Well, fall is certainly here, and there's a chill to the air. In my house, that means it's time to make rice cozies. Rice cozies are a great way to keep warm, especially when you don't want to turn up the heat, and they're super easy to make. Hey, I can make them - that should tell you something!
I made eight of them Sunday, and sent three over to Thistledew. The remaining five were claimed immediately, and the boys were clamoring for more. I guess I'll make several more this weekend, and maybe put together a few more for Christmas gifts. Hey, if you can only make one thing, it's nice if it's something everybody loves!
So, do you want to make your own? Start with a two pieces of all-cotton fabric (the all-cotton part is important - cotton won't catch fire in the microwave) cut to the approximate size you'd like for your finished cozy. Four by eight inches is a good size to start.
Put printed sides together, sew around three sides. This makes a cloth "bag" which you are going to fill with rice. I fill it about 2/3 full, because you want to be able to shift the rice about and mold the bag a bit. Then stitch the bag closed.
Heat the finished cozy in the microwave and the rice inside will hold heat for a long time. Start with 45 seconds of heating time, and go from there. Microwaves vary, and the size of the cozy and the amount of rice in the bag also affect heating time. I've had cozies that took one minute to get warm, and cozies that took three. It just depends.
You can also used dried corn, dried wheat or dried barley in the cozies. I've tried corn, and it has a pleasant "popcorn" odor. If you want a scented cozy, dried herbs can be added to the cozy before it is stitched up. Lavendar gives a nice, relaxing scent.
*******As with ANY heating device, use with caution. Anyone with potentially reduced sensation (babies, diabetics, the elderly) should only use the cozy if someone with good temperature sensation has ensured that it is warm only, and not hot to avoid severe burns. Test it on your inner elbow - if it is at ALL questionable, err on the side of caution and don't put it on your loved one!!!! *********
Diamond Threadworks has a good visual tutorial and patterns if you need further instruction. She also shows you how to make a nice cover to keep your cozy clean - we tend to use them for one season only because the kids are so rough on them - after that, they can be cut open and placed, cloth and all, into the compost pile. In one season, they don't get terribly soiled, so I usually don't worry about a cover. However, most of you are probably quite a bit calmer than my boys, so it might be worthwhile to make one.
Don't forget our giveaway - go to Brandyanne's Candles and Prims, find the "Clay Hill Scents" under the "products" list and come back here or to Thistledew and tell us what scents you'd like. If you win, we'll send you a 12 oz soy candle AND three Prairie Prim Pantry Melters! We're drawing the winner November 1st, so tell your friends to come on over and enter!