Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Christmas 2016: Potholders, A Hot Plate and a Book

For this installment of "Christmas 2016" we have a gift for one of my sister-in-laws; two pot holders, a hot plate (basically an extra thick pot holder) and the gift of a book.

I was at the used store earlier this month and was just glancing at the craft section when I saw some what looked to be quilt blocks that someone had pre-cut and were all pinned together for sale.  I then did a quick mental check on what I'd seen and went, "Wait.  Who cuts batting when making quilt blocks?" because it was obvious there was batting in with the blocks.  So, I looked closer and stumbled onto a really nice find.  I found that someone had actually pre-cut out pot holders, complete with thermal reflective material in with the batting (that stuff ain't cheap!) and the blocks were on sale for .25 each!!!  I had been planning on making my sister-in-law some pot holders out of some thermal material I'd purchased on sale with a coupon on Jo-Ann Fabric's site a while back, but this was way cheaper, so I used my pocket change to pay for the pot holder blocks, got home and switched out the outer material to something that wasn't going to show food stains easily (I realized the mistake early on in my cooking career about buying light colored pot holders...they always look dirty!).  I put different fabric on either side so they were reversible (in case she didn't like one pattern I hoped I'd at least double my chances that she wouldn't mind ONE of them *laugh*).  I put some extra batting in with one pot holder (the one that has quilting like pie slices instead of the diagonal cross hatch design) to use for a hot plate or for things like moving a cast iron pan from oven to stove and such as I wanted to make sure she wouldn't burn her hand using them.

The outer material I cut from fabric I had been given to me, the quilt binding was left over from previous projects I'd done (and I think originally gifted to me by my step-mom).  So all totaled the project cost me .75 to do.

I don't have a picture of it, but I am throwing in a book Keeping the Harvest: Preserving Your Fruits, Vegetables and Herbs (Down-to-Earth Book) (associate link).  I got this as a good, basic beginner guide to canning, dehydrating and just general food preservation as my sister-in-law showed some interest in it earlier in the year.  I got mine used (you can get it for .01 used plus shipping) and used a gift card I got from redeeming Swagbucks to pay for it.  It's a good book that breaks down things like canning into simple to understand terms and steps.

Total time to make gift:  2 hours for the pot holders I'd say between sewing and cutting.  The book I think I spent about three hours on Amazon searching through reviews until I found the book I wanted to get.

Total cost to make gift:  .75 for the thermal reflective fabric squares.


  1. What a great score and a lovely gift!

  2. What a great score and a lovely gift!

  3. That sounds like a lovely gift for your sister-in-law. I hope she really likes it! Can't beat the price for that gift.

  4. They are so bright and cheerful looking, I'm sure she will love them! I know I would.

  5. The pot holders look great. That was a great find. So how many more presents do you have to go?
    I am slowly feeling better and have been up doing things again. I am not up to normal but definitely on my way to being better. It feels so good to feel good again. Prayers answered.
    This weeks savings:
    *Son #1 came home for the weekend. He brought an assortment of broken computers which he tore apart (on the kitchen table, floor, counters and all over the place) and reassembled to make a new working computer for Son #3. It was geek speak constantly – of which I could understand very little. After he downloads programs to do...stuff and then adds updates to do...stuff it will be a fantastic fast, and powerful computer that will do great...stuff….I am proud of them for being CHEAP!
    *I cooked and froze at least 25 meals and frozen raw milk for Son #1 to take back with him. He can't cook anything and won't learn. He always paid Son #3 to cook for him growing up when I was not around. Oh well, he can build computers.
    *FINALLY! The weather has broken. Sunday we had a high of 94 and then on Wednesday night it dipped down in the 40s. I have been able to get out in the garden and do a little work. Hubby plowed the last part of the garden to be planted for this winter so hopefully I can get it planted now. My collard, lettuce and spinach seeds have not germinated. I think it has been too hot so I have replanted. Hopefully it won't suddenly turn freezing cold but will stay cool for a while so the plants can grow a bit. What a long hot summer it has been.
    *Harvested from the garden: Lima beans, yard-long beans, okra, tomatoes, cabbage, paprika peppers, bell peppers and onions greens. Herbs harvested: basil and St. John's wort and andrographis (medicinal).
    *I learned to make pesto from “Becky at Home” when she replied to my post here last week. It was so good and I have made more batches and frozen it.
    *Survived a disastrous colonoscopy this week. Two days shot, one in preparation and one in the hospital. Everything was fine so I will not do it again for ten years.
    *Went to Goodwill's $.99 Wednesday and got two blouses, three tee shirts and a pair of pants. They are discontinuing this special sale and today was the last one. I am not worried. It is a cycle. From time to time they cancel the good sales or raise the prices then the stores get overloaded with unsold merchandise. They figure it out then either lower the prices or start having good sales again. They will still have other sales but I will need to change the way I shop. I have been just dropping in on Wednesdays while out running errands and quickly walking the store. If I see something, I will snag it. My trips will now be fewer and further between with planned lists. It is a good thing. I think I will spend less money.
    * Also, did all the usual money saving activities like washing out baggies, using less detergent by stopping the washing machine and soaking clothes overnight, cutting out coupons, closed three bedroom doors during the day to save on electricity and we have even opened the windows since it is cool at night, fixed lunches for son # 3 plus driving to the Amish to get milk.
    I have not done as good as usual but I am slowly getting back up to speed.