There's something about that family beach vacation that is indescribable--a blur of sun-drenched days and breezy nights, a Mary Cassatt painting come to life. One way that my family celebrated our vacation this year was with an activity that my sister and I always loved as girls, painting rocks. The collecting is just as much fun as the painting, every single person in the family can participate, and the resulting product is something that can be a paperweight or rest in a dish back home.
Now, when my sister and I used to do this, we used giant conch shells and day-glo tempera paint. This time round, I selected inexpensive, non-toxic acrylics in a range of colors and a set of brushes that came in a variety of sizes.
We collected the rocks together at the beach and washed them in salt water. The kids had a ball finding their favorites. Back at the beach house, we covered the dining room table in a few layers of newspaper and got to work. Some people chose to commemorate something specific, like a caught flounder or a jellyfish sting, others chose general themes, and the youngest members of our family went "abstract" (though they can tell you exactly what it is they painted!).
We dried our masterpieces on the front porch banister--also on several layers of newspaper--where they were the rightful subjects of much admiration. What a wonderful reminder of these perfect summer days.