Friday, February 3, 2017

Northeast Ohio Rocks #MyMuttRocks

Way back in September, Barley and I found a rock with the word read and an image of the book hidden beneath a shrub outside the library. I almost missed it as we strolled by, but it caught my eye--we stopped, moved it out a few inches, took a picture (it was Banned Books Week after all), and then slid it back to where it had been.

A photo posted by Beth (@eedevore) on
Over the next several months, we found painted rocks all over our neighborhood. We started stopping and taking pictures with them. It was like finding hidden treasure every time we left the house.





We even found a Christmas treasure in December.

A photo posted by Beth (@eedevore) on
As we posted pictures of them, my friends and family started wondering what the story behind them was. I was also curious, but also enjoyed the mystery of the rocks, so I didn't really try to find any answers. A few family members decided to start painting their own in various states because everybody needs a little more joy in their lives and finding treasures is any easy way to do that.

Then last week, we went to agility class and our trainer walked over to get a sip of water and started laughing: "There's a rock over here! It has a note saying to re-hide it!" I was so excited and told the class about the treasures we'd been finding for months. Our trainer said someone should re-hide it, so I picked it up and took it home for our next adventure.

What was this cat doing in an agility gym?! 

The rock had a little slip of paper sealed onto the back that said "Find us on Facebook at Northeast Ohio Rocks. Post a picture and re-hide me." I visited the Facebook page and was amazed by how many incredible rocks people had painted (seriously--there are full landscapes on rocks. Check out the page and be wowed!) and all of the different stories that were being shared by the people who found them.

Rye was acting silly right outside the frame--Barley was not happy.

By the time we got home from re-hiding the cat rock, a newspaper article was going around about the story behind the rocks. They started as a sort of random acts of kindness activity and now people all across our area are participating.

Once I knew what the story was, I wanted to be a part of it, too, so I ordered all the supplies I needed from Amazon and anxiously awaited for them to get here! 

The supplies trickled in all week and last night I sat down and got to work. I knew I wanted a few lines of Emily Dickinson poetry on my rocks. I also wanted a few that felt kind of valentines-y to be a bit seasonal. Some of the rocks also just seemed to be calling for certain designs. I ended up with 10 rocks to hide in our neighborhood or on our adventures.




The girls were not happy that we were not playing, but eventually they settled down and let me create. Hopefully, they'll forgive me when I take them on adventures to distribute our treasures. 

Can we please stop crafting now?

The group suggested creating a hashtag that ends in rocks to put on your rocks with the instructions on the back so that you can easily track them (with several thousand people in the group, it would be easy to miss your rocks' pictures when they're found!) if people decide to use the hashtag. I decided to go with #MyMuttRocks, so if you want to follow along on my rocks' journey with me, you can search #MyMuttRocks on Facebook (and it looks like some people share the rocks on Instagram, too, with #NortheastOhioRocks)! There's no guarantee that whoever finds the rocks will post the pictures or use the hashtag--and I really just want people to feel the same joy I've felt finding the rocks--but I do hope that I get to see where at least a few of the rocks go on their journeys!

If you want to spread a little joy around your state, too, you don't need much! All you need are rocks (I ordered these because I'm too impatient to wait for them to dry after cleaning mud off ones I find, but any rock will do), paint, paint brushes, modge podge (if you want to attach instructions on the back), and a waterproof sealant to protect your art.  I also got some paint pens because I don't have the patience to write full things with a paint brush. 

We'll hopefully be heading out on an adventure this weekend to hide a few of these, so stay tuned for more stories!

21 comments:

  1. Those are super fun. They kind of remind me of a thing my town does every summer, putting pianos outside, that are crazily painted, for people to just sit down and play all around town. That kind of thing always makes me smile.

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    1. That sounds incredible! Our old town did different fun decorations in the downtown area (painted wooden snowmen, scarecrows) for different seasons and we always loved seeing those on our walks. These are extra fun to me since they're unexpected and you never know where they'll turn up--but I'd LOVE to see pianos around town.

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  2. I've also been wondering about these, and the explanation doesn't spoil it!

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    1. I know! It makes them that much better! At first, I was really sad when I'd see that the ones we'd found had disappeared, but knowing that they've moved on to make other people happy makes me happy!

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    1. Finding them has been the highlight of our walks the last few months! Painting them has been equally fun, so I can't wait to see if people are able to find the ones I hide!

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  4. Hi. How wonderful a thing to do. And something everyone can do and take pleasure in,whether finding or painting. Thanks for telling us about it. Purrs ERin

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    1. It is really fun to be on both sides--the hiding and the seeking!

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  5. How fun to find AND create! When I was in treatment for my eating disorder, the facility had a tradition that patients paint rocks much like these ... some just pictures ... some words ... inspiring quotes ... and they all ended up in a rock garden. We were free to take or trade or gift rocks that we found that spoke to us at a specific time. Such a simple concept, with such healing and connecting implications! Thank you for linking up to the Showcase!

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    1. What a wonderful tradition at that facility! We've found some--like the be happy and the wish rocks--that were on days when I really needed a pick me up, so I can totally understand the healing aspect!

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  6. This is SO COOL! Now you have me wanting to do something like that where I live.

    Off to check out your links. Thanks for joining the Pet Blogger Showcase Linky Party!

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    1. You totally should! It's so fun for everyone!

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  7. This is brilliant! We live in an older neighborhood and everyone has dogs that they walk so hiding (and painting) rocks is such a great idea! What a fun project for the community and I like that you didn't know about it - like a pass kindness campaign! So glad you posted about this.

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    1. Not knowing was definitely fun! It made it more of a mystery--but now that I do know, it's just as fun! Let me know if you end up doing it in your neighborhood--I'd love to hear about how it turns out!

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  8. We've seen some of the rocks you found on Instagram, but didn't know what it was all about. How fun that is!

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    1. I was so excited to be able to have an explanation to share with everyone!

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  9. What a fun idea this is! It's a great way to make what might just be an every day walk in the same places into a little bit of a treasure hunt!
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

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    1. It has definitely made our normal walking routes more exciting when we've found them in our neighborhood! From the posts in the Facebook group, it sounds like it's also making people more excited about getting out of the house and exploring!

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  10. Oh my gosh! I love so much about this! What a great way to spread a little joy and kindness. We really need this right now! I think I may do a few of these myself!! Thank you for joining the Pet Blogger Linky party.

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    1. It is a wonderful way to spread a little bit of happiness around--and it's so easy to do!

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  11. I loved this so much I picked it as one of my featured posts for the Pet Blogger Showcase and I bought some rocks and can't wait to do the same thing where I live.

    Thanks for joining in the Pet Blogger Showcase!

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