For Easy Napping
When baby quilts are made for a new baby in our family, my daughter and I make two alike. One is kept at my house and one at hers. Then when the child naps at my house, the favorite blanket is already there, waiting. When the favorite blanket at my daughter’s house is worn out, the less worn one from my house fills the need.—, Mt. Vernon, Iowa
My bulletin board is by no means ordinary. It is a blueprint for the practical side of my life. Covered with colored cards, held in orderly rows by bright tacks, it has drawn the attention of many a passerby, who reads its contents in surprise.
For many years I formulated goals, made plans, and listed ideas that accumulated in stacks by the telephone, in the clutter at the head of the bed, in lost notebooks, or in my head. Soon these various interests and responsibilities were enormous and seemed to pursue me. I ran to accomplish important things before I forgot or lost my multiple notes.
Then inspiration struck. It is a basic fact that before you build anything you must plan it out completely. “For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost?”(Luke 14:28). The result was a bulletin board that freed me from the snare of good intentions, that got me organized without chaining me. It now keeps me aware of daily, weekly, and long-range chores and goals, including a few dreams not yet on the drawing board.
I used colored cards of varied sizes, inscribed with major headings, and tacked to the board. Under each heading is a small sheet listing specifics. Some of the entries merely serve as reminders. But commitments and goals are reinforced when they are written down, so on some of them I have inserted deadlines. As I complete a goal, I cross out that item or replace the sheet.
My bulletin board is subject to constant change, allowing for my strengths, weaknesses, and current interests. A sampling of entries might include:
Reading: A list of about ten books I am reading or hope to read soon.
Sewing: Particular items needing attention—curtains, pajamas, a baby quilt.
Daily schedule: Reminders of certain chores—Tuesday, polish the bathroom; Thursday, mend. I change it, bend it, and it doesn’t restrict me, but it does give me something to work from.
Long-range goals: Classes I’d like to take, skills to develop, dream house plans, etc.
Weekly weight: My husband and I weigh each Friday and log our weight on the board.
Weekly goals: This one really untangles the week for me. It includes guests coming, visits to make, projects to finish, errands.
Special thoughts: Gems from talks or articles, letters to write, etc.
Current marriage goals and commitments: Items from our projects together, such as daily reading, vocabulary building, or a commitment not to eat after dinner. It is security for me to see these things in print.
My bulletin board is for the practical side of my life; more personal goals are not for public viewing. But my life must become a life of order, and my bulletin board is disciplining me in that direction.—, St. Cloud, Minnesota
Add a cup of crushed pineapple to eight cups of apple pulp when making applesauce; add spice as usual. The pineapple gives the applesauce a richer flavor but doesn’t overwhelm it. Proportions may be varied, depending on personal taste.—, Salt Lake City, Utah
Storage: Dry and Humid
Ideally, every home should have two food-storage areas—one of high humidity for fresh foods, and one of low humidity for preserved foods.
Fresh fruits and vegetables need a humid storage place so they do not give up moisture to the room. Apples and other produce will thus stay fresh and moist. Brown sugar also fares better in a humid place. Root cellars or winter storage pits qualify as humid areas.
On the other hand, white sugar should be stored in a dry place or it will turn lumpy. The sugar should also be put into tightly closed containers. Foods stored in the utility room with the washer and dryer will need protection from the extra moisture. Dry storage areas are usually inside the home: closets, cupboards, and bedrooms.
Foods that store best in a dry place are canned or bottled foods; wheat, corn, rice, and other grains; flour and all cereals; dry beans and peas; dry milk and dehydrated foods; white sugar; and salt and seasonings.—, instructor in Food Science and Nutrition, Brigham Young University
Stitch and Doublestitch
Seven-year-old Christine pulled a dangling thread and the entire hem of her dress came unsewed. Her brother Richard pulled a thread and a button flipped off. We watched open-mouthed as our dentist pulled a thread and the sleeve of his uniform came unsewed from the jacket. These were all ready-made garments, not home sewn.
One of home sewing’s greatest merits can be minimizing future mending problems. Remember:
1. To avoid frayed seams, which eventually pull apart, run a row of machine stitching near the cut edge of each seam allowance then overcast by hand or zigzag machine stitching. If the fabric is quite firm, zigzag machine stitching will suffice.
2. To prevent seams from breaking in armholes and in the crotch of pants, use a slight zigzag stitch. If you do not have a zigzag machine, stitch the seam a second time about one-sixteenth of an inch beyond the seamline, using short stitches.
3. To reinforce seams on a one-piece sleeve and bodice, such as a kimono, use twill tape, a narrow strip of selvage, or woven-edge seam tape. Raglan sleeves can also be reinforced with narrow tape.
4. To prevent ripped-out dress hems, blind hem them by machine when the fabric type permits. On lightweight and sheer fabrics, a hidden slip stitch by hand will prevent wear of the thread.
5. To reinforce waist seams, sew woven-edge seam tape or a half-inch strip of selvage over the waistline seam, stitching the seam twice.
6. To prevent rips under buttons and around buttonholes, interface all facings with a sturdy, lightweight fabric. (Use zippers instead of buttons wherever possible, especially for blouse and dress backs.)
7. Sew buttons and snaps on by hand instead of by machine. The machine needle goes back through the fabric in the same place each time, thereby weakening that area.
8. Leave lined coats open at the bottom, even in ski-type jackets. Then you can get inside to mend the seams, particularly the armhole seams that are under the most stress.—, Aurora, Oregon