Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Pack Rat

I am a pack rat extraordinaire. Throw something away? Never. I might need it later, for some project. Of course, if you'd ask me what I was going to use it for at the time I decided it needed to be squirreled away, I probably wouldn't be able to tell you. However, I've used saved wine corks to plug our spurting water filter, ripped up jeans to mend another pair of ripped up jeans, the shiny insides of Puff's Plus boxes for Valentines, old onion bags to put wet lettuce in to "spin" the water from...
Other people even know this about me, so when my mother-in-law was going through her mother's odds and ends of fabrics she knew I'd want them and brought a big bag of vintage scraps for me. She even included some half-sewn quilt squares and pre-cut pieces that had been her grandmothers.
This Christmas, much to my self-satisfaction, I found the perfect use for them.
After a trip to Mountain Farms, I came away with a 1 gallon bag of lavender leaves and buds. You have no idea how much this is until you see it. And seeing it is nothing compared to opening the zippered bag and smelling it.
Then, I started combining the pie-shaped pieces and sewing them into little sachets. The kids helped me spoon lavender into them and then I stitched them up by hand and gave them away with presents.
Note the hand stitching on the beginnings of a hexagonal pieced quilt top. What a lot of work!
I also purchased a few yards of soft flannel from the local fabric store Needle Me This and sewed rectangles that the kids filled with a combination of rice and lavender. Once I closed the top, they could be put in the microwave for about a minute-and-a-half and -- wa-lah a portable heating pad. I used one like this constantly after the accident so decided to make about twenty as gifts.
The bonus of this adventure is that I learned Mountain Farms, aside from making about the best goat cheese around, has a labyrinth made from lavender plants. I can hardly wait for the summer to try it out!

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