Wedding Anniversary: Mrs. Newlywed’s Labor of Love!

by Mindy Lockard on July 8, 2009

In the spirit of wedding anniversary season I’ve asked Mrs. Newlywed, of the very popular blog Misadventures of a Newlywed, to share her first anniversary gift for Mr. Newlywed with you.  In only the most appropriate fashion, her gift is from the heart, it’s a sacrifice (as we know the key to living happily ever after is our willingness to make sacrifices, even when it entails crafting) and it’s the traditional first anniversary gift: paper.  After reading this, pop over to her blog and you’ll soon learn why Mr. Newlywed loved her so much he popped the question. Enjoy!

Mrs. Newlywed attempts an arts & crafts project…

By, Mrs. Newlywed

Let me just come out and say it. I avoid arts & crafts projects like cheap paper towels. In most situations I would rather be forced to clean the bathtub with a tooth brush, and I hate cleaning. My crafty side is completely limited to scrapbooking, counted cross-stitch, and sewing.

I am glad we just got that out in the open.

So, how does my arts & crafts hating self end up making a homemade gift for our one year anniversary?

Two words: Mr. Newlywed.

Second major confession? I am married to a professional illustrator. As in someone who makes money drawing and inking pictures for the world to see. Someone who thought it was a great idea to make homemade first anniversary gifts. Yeah, good idea for him. The man with no less than 9 bazillion professional writing utensils from $30.00 pencils [yeah, for one] to markers that remind me of the ones that have been banned in schools.

My art supplies? Crayola crayons and a glue stick. Left over from my sorority days, and those ended a few years back.

So I sat there thinking what can I make with this? Should I dare touch his expensive paper? Oh! I can make a coupon book. Or not.

After weeks days of pondering, I decided to make a little book. All I needed to buy was something with enough pages to say what I wanted to say, but not so many that I would lose motivation and not finish the project. I finally settled on index cards on a spiral. So now I was armed with Crayola crayons, a glue stick, index cards, and some magazines. I decided I would really play on the whole 1st thing and make it look almost comically youthful.


Here is the cover. I took a green note card I found in my closet and used scrapbooking photo tape to adhere it to the front. Yes, I am aware the whole thing isn’t covered. I didn’t have anything that fit exactly, and in the end I decided I didn’t care.

I pulled out the crayons and wrote on the front. On the inside of the front cover I used a blue Crayola marker to write a little personal note to Mr. Newlywed. I let the cover sit for an hour or so while I took a wine break.

On the very first card I attached another green note card and wrote I love you because…


Next I wrote something I loved about him on the backside of all of the cards. Some were funny like you know the name of almost every movie in less than 10 seconds of viewing it. Others were serious like the one shown above. It gave it a very Mrs. Newlywed feel. I don’t do serious very well.


Next I went through my magazines. I did not dare touch Mr. Newlywed’s collection. I cut out a ton of pictures that were related to things I wrote. Some weren’t really related, but I made them work anyway. I attached them where they were most relevant as shown in the ice cream picture.


This is what the final product looked like. A collage of pictures related to the statements in crayon.

It was a lot of fun, but it wasn’t as simple as I expected. It took a few bottles of wine days for me to finish it. I expected it to take a few hours tops.

In the end I really liked it. Even though it wasn’t a huge masterpiece, it had me written all over it. Simple. Done at the level of a kindergartener. Lots of pictures of wine.

Mr. Newlywed really liked it. I believe his exact words were This is hilarious. I can’t believe you spent so much time going through magazines for pictures of things that made you think of me!

So there you have it. A great project for any occasion. Something personal but it doesn’t take itself too seriously. Perfect for your 4 year old artist or when you need something fun to make for your husband!

Thank you Mrs. Newlywed for sharing your labor of love!

I’m a huge fan of giving gifts off of the traditional and modern Anniversary list.  It’s a tradition among our group of friends, that when we get together to celebrate an anniversary we give a group gift from one of the lists.  We’ve been known to give gifts such as: a copper watering can (Seventh: Traditional, Copper), an ice cream maker (Eighth: Traditional, Appliance), and a Leather Guest book (Ninth: Modern, Leather). It’s a wonderful way cheer our friends on during one of the most amazing and trying marathons in life; the marathon called marriage!

Here is the *list for your shopping pleasure.  Remember these are just suggestions!

I will tell you this, friends, this bride is holding out for those diamonds!


*After much research and cross referencing I developed a list that I believe to be the most accurate and current.  My resources ranged from The Amy Vanderbilt Complete Book of Etiquette, Peggy Post’s list in Emily Posts Wedding Etiquette book,,,, to Emily Post herself.  The only item that I couldn’t find multiple references for is the traditional no. 4 that came from Amy Vanderbilt: books.  I kept it as I believe there is something very intimate in exchanging literature. How wonderful to build a library together!


{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Elizabeth Coleman 07.08.09 at 9:14 pm

Love ! I think I will have to have my kiddos make this book for Mr. C… They will make it sweet and sincere. Also, thanks for compiling the list for anniversaries, very helpful!

admin 07.08.09 at 9:31 pm

Hi, Lizzie, Isn’t the book adorable! It takes me back to college when I wrapped a shoe box and filled it with love letters for Ty. Thanks for stopping by! Best, Mindy

Molly Lou 07.09.09 at 3:20 am

LOVE THIS! What a great idea…I am a big fan of craft projects (former elementary school teacher), but have zero ability. YAY to Mrs. Newlywed for owning her skills and sharing her fab project.

Thanks for posting and sharing!

Preppy Pink Crab 07.09.09 at 3:29 am

This is so cute…

Carol M 07.09.09 at 3:57 am

Thank you so much for sharing this! It goes to prove that it is gifts from the heart that matter most. I read Mrs. Newlywed daily; she’s awesome! If we could all learn how to keep that sweet, child-like love of our first few years of marriage!

Jen E @ mommablogsalot 07.09.09 at 6:00 am

Now there is a craft project I think even I could pull off – if only the third anniversary were a paper year, too. 😛

Chelsea 07.09.09 at 6:48 am

For Valentine’s Day a couple years ago I gave my hubby a journal of 365 reason why I love him. I started the previous Valentine’s Day and wrote in it every night. Some were a couple words. Some were a couple paragraphs. He loves it. So did I. It’s fun to reread.

Rachel 07.09.09 at 8:18 am

What a lovely gift idea !:)

Lil' Woman 07.09.09 at 10:34 am

Last Valentines Day, I made my boyfriend, a 52 reasons why I loved him on a deck of cards…you think it will be a cute easy tasks, but it is VERRRYYYY time consuming! 🙂
He loved it tho!

Legallyblondemel 07.09.09 at 11:12 am

Fun feature idea!

Like this gift idea. That is, I like watching Mrs. N. do it; as I like to say, I’m only crafty in the diabolical sense, so I’m impressed with this & that she even knows how to sew!

The Preppy Princess 07.09.09 at 5:25 pm

This is such a fun, beautiful post! Thank you for sharing the gift and the process with us Miss Newlywed, and thanks also to Miss Mindy, for being wise and requesting that Miss Newlywed do this post!

This is going to sound so corny but I shall say it anyway: there is a purity about the post and the gift that makes my heart smile. It is just so very cool. 🙂

admin 07.09.09 at 5:43 pm

Thanks, Preppy Princess for stopping by and for your wise (not corny) words! I couldn’t agree more! I’m so thankful that Mrs. Newlywed graced us with her presence and her gift! I have heard from many people that they were inspired by it! It has been a true pleasure working with Mrs. Newlywed and meeting her fabulous friends! Best regards, Mindy

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