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Christmas Countdown

December 4, 2012 - Jen Zbozny
Here's an update and an idea from our Christmas countdown. 

Yesterday Ben was delighted to have such great weather. It allowed him to put Christmas decorations up outside on the front of the house. Given that he is a magical stuffed dog who comes alive in Decmber to help imp and elf for Christmas, you'd think he would be unmoved by his prior years of outside decorating in freezing cold snowy weather in the middle of the night. Ben, like the rest of us, is getting older and likes to be warm and comfy and get his rest too. Hmmm...

Yesterday's event was meant to be a trip on the Christmas train at the mall, but Eve decided we had elf work to do too. We spent time making gifts together. In keeping with Ben's appreciation for warmth and comfort, we are making some nice warm things for gifts this year. Here's an easy idea that your kids can help with too:

Make microwaveable rice-filled bed-warmers! These are the equivalent of hot water bottles, except they're filled with rice. With a few dollars of fabric, some thread, a sewing machine, and some rice, you can make a lovely , handy, homemade gift!

Here's how: Supplies for One "Hot Bean" as we call them

2-3 cups of uncooked rice

I rectangle of muslin for the inner rice bag. Rectangle should be 12" wide by 22" long.

1 rectangle of fleece for the outer bag. Fleece works really well as you don't need to hem them open edge of the bag since fleece doesn't fray at the edge. Rectangle should be 16"wide by 28" long.

Needle and thread.


Fold the muslin in half, forming a 6" by 11" rectangle. Using your sewing machine, sew along the two long sides and one of the short sides of the rectangle using no larger than a 1/2 " seam allowance. This will be your rice bag. There should be an opening at the top so you can pour the rice into it. Set it aside.

Decide which side you want as the outside of your fabric. With that side as the INside, fold the fleece in half forming an 8" by 14" rectangle. Using your sewing machine, sew along the two long sides and one short side of your fabric. When you've finished sewing this piece, you will have your "pillow" into which you will slip your muslin rice bag.

Get your muslin bag. Pour desired amount of rice into muslin bag. Turn over the top edge and hand (or machine stitch) the bag closed, such that the rice stays in the bag!

Now, slip your rice bag into your fleece outer covering and warm in the microwave for about two minutes. Then curl into bed or onto the couch with your nice, soft, warm new best friend! Enjoy!

Also, please remember to act surprised if you receive one of these from us.

I hope you're enjoying the balmy weather!


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