Monday, February 22, 2010
Friday, February 19, 2010
Friday, February 12, 2010
It’s been so cold and damp here that I immediately thought of the soothing relief of hot packs. Simple enough!
There are many “how to’s” across the internet about how to make microwavable styles with either rice or dried beans. One thing I have learned is that the legumes (because of their larger size) tend to hold the heat longer.
If you decide to whip a few up for yourself, be sure to use only all cotton fabrics and threads (since microwaves and polyester don’t play well together.
I made small packs, for a sore neck or shoulder, beginning by cutting 20” x 5” strips of muslin. Fold in half, bringing the two short ends together. Sew along the long sides, so that the piece is connected on three sides, and open at the top (short end).
Fold in thirds lengthwise, and sew along the two folds (which results in three “tubes” open at the end).
Roll an index card into a funnel to direct the slippery little beans into the tubes. Don’t fill all the way, since the pack will be more comfortable when flexible.
After the tubes are full, fold the opening end over twice, an stitch down securely. There! now you have the heat pack itself finished. Easy, huh?
But we have to make it a bit prettier, don't we? Next comes a little slipcover that can be removed for washing. You can even choose material with motifs that reflect the personality of the person who will be receiving this cozy gift. The one above made out of pink Girl Scout try-it material is for my Brownie daughter.
The cover fabrics should also be cut in a strip, just a bit larger than the muslin. I cut mine 21" x 6". Then, even with the seam allowances, it will still have plenty of room to slip over the pack.First, fold the two short ends of the strip over twice and stitch to make hems. Then, with right sides of the fabric (design side facing design side) together, offset the ends and stitch up the sides. Think of an eyeglass case with a fold-over flap. Overlap the ends on one side of your case, and finish stitching the sides together.
Turn case right-side-out, and slide your hot pack inside. (See the lil' guy peeking out?) Fold the last flap closed, and you're ready for gifting.
Remember to attach a tag letting the person know that the hot pack can be heated in the microwave for about one minute, and that the cover is removable for washing.
I think I'll test one out right now....aaaaaaahhhhhh!
Have a cozy Valentines Day.
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
I've been seeing this project posted all over the internet the last few weeks, and just had to try it for myself. Luckily, the first time I saw the post was just after Christmas, so I was able to scoop up a couple of boxes of mini candy canes on clearance at Target. And I love that they are "fruit flavored" (yes, I tried them...they really are), just in case anyone is still burned out on peppermint from the holidays.
Monday, February 8, 2010
Saturday, February 6, 2010
Just for fun, I found some other ideas across the internet.
Since bear hugs are a good thing to share for Valentine's, you might consider this happy little bear from Making Friends.
But my absolute favorite (so far) this year is the hardy pirate ship by My Party Bug. Can't you just imagine your little swashbuckler beaming with pride when carrying this into the classroom? http://www.mypartybug.com/blog/?cat=6
Whatever design they choose (even if it's stickers on a bag) Valentine's is a great chance for kids to show their friends they care. Have fun, and Happy Heart Day!
Friday, February 5, 2010
Thursday, February 4, 2010
Please forgive the lack of posts lately. I hope to share some of the projects with you that I have been working on in the next few days. There is just so much inspiration out there with all of your creative ladies...it's difficult to decide what to try first!
On my way home yesterday, I decided that I deserved a few minutes of down time. I thought that poking through an antique shop was just the thing to do the trick.
Winding through the maze of rooms at “Hole in the Wall Antiques”, I happily browsed through cabinets of china, bins of costume jewelry, and stacks of ne
w and old books. I filed through a small basket of antique photos, looking for any identifying names on the backs…but no luck. It always makes me a bit sad to think of pictures like these that should be with their families.
Just as I was about to leave (shockingly empty-handed!), I spotted an old yearbook. Oh, no. I have a weakness for them. And it was from a small Texas college in the 1920’s. How fun is that? I flipped through the pages, trying to talk myself out of buying a book that I had no personal connection to, but it was no use. To me it seemed to be page after page of mysteries to be solved. It’s the genealogist in me. It’s a sickness.
So up to the register I marched with this thin brown book.
“Buying ancestors?”, one of the ladies behind the counter asked.
“No, I have quite enough of my own. I just couldn’t resist.”, I replied.
I pointed out to the shopkeepers that it was from Tehuacana, Texas, and asked if either of them had ever heard of it. After exchanging a good laugh, they admitted that not only did they not know where it was but they couldn’t even pronounce it.
No matter. My friends don’t call me the Google Queen for nothing. I knew that I would find out exactly where it was (or had been) as soon as I got home to my laptop.
Tehuacana is in Limestone County, Texas at North Highway 171 and FM 638. 6 miles northwest of Mexia (pronounced “ma-hay-a” for those of you unfamiliar with the quaint town), 6 miles east of Coolidge, 41 miles southeast of Hillsboro, 46 miles east of Waco and 36 miles south of Corsicana. In 2000, the population was 307. So there! It does still exist. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for the college, but more about that later.
So here I am: a strange yearbook in my hands and lots of little mysteries to solve. I hope that you’ll want to come along on the ride (however short or long it may be), and perhaps…just perhaps…someone out there trying to climb their family tree will find some little tidbit I run across to be helpful.