Friday, January 23, 2009

Are Your Freezing? Keeping Warm the FVM Way

I've been marveling at the adaptability of my family lately. We've been heating with a woodburning stove for a few years now. In the past, we always had the heat set to 60 degrees as a back up in case the fire died down overnight. When oil prices went wacky last year, we opted to not turn the heat on at all. So this entire heating season, we've heated exclusively with the woodstove. (We did compromise and move a small space heater that had been in the garage into the bathroom to make that room toasty while showering. We figured we'd wind up showering longer if the room was cold in an attempt to warm up.)

The thing that amazes me is no one complains, everybody takes it in stride. We all have a gazillion blankets on our beds and some have taken to wearing sleeping caps to maintain body heat. (In fact, Leen made sleeping caps put of fleece scraps for her father and sister for Christmas.) On exceptionally cold nights, we'll set an alarm to remind us to add wood to the fire in the middle of the night.

The boys crack me up the most. They really don't remember a time when life wasn't like this so they don't think twice about being asked to refill the log ring that sits outside our back door. They both know that they need to close the curtains to keep the warmth inside at night. Just this morning, Rob asked how much the yarn I was unraveling from a thrift store sweater would cost if I bought it at the store. When I told him what I thought it would cost he said, "That's ridiculous, why would anybody spend that?"

Even the girls have a slightly skewed view of things. Yesterday, Leen announced she was going to cook more often because she liked standing near the warm stove.

So what's the point? I guess if you do anything frugal long enough, it stops seeming odd, even to the family members who may have been your most vocal opponents in the beginning.

BTW, if you're curious about the fleece sleeping caps here's the basic instructions. This is a super simple project, especially if you wind up using fleece since the edges won't fray out.

Leenie's Keep Your Head Warm Sleeping Cap
1.Start by measuring the person's head and adding an inch to this number for seam allowance. Divide this number in half. This is your final measurement

2.Pin together your fleece with the right side facing in. (This will allow you to cut out both sides of your hat at once.) Draw a line across the bottom edge of your fabric the length of the final measurement you came up with in step one.

3.To create the body of the hat, draw a line up from the edges of the line you just drew:
8 1/2 inches for a man's head
6 1/2 inches for a woman's head
5 3/4 inches for a child's head

You should have something that looks like a football goal.

4.Now you need to decide how long you want your cap to be. Find the center of the first line you drew and draw another line straight up from that. This is the line that determines the length of your cap. There are no right answers on this one, it's purely aesthetic.

5.Draw a line from the center line you just drew down to each of the lines that create the body of the cap. Pin along the lines to hold your pattern together. You are now ready to cut your cap out.

6.Sew along all edges EXCEPT the bottom edge, that's where your head fits in.

7.Now turn the bottom edge under and sew all around to give you a nice finished edge. You're all done except for any embellishing you choose to do. Leen added a flannel edge to the one she made for her dad. She did a plain egde for her sister but used two different colors of fleece. Get creative!


Taradactyl in a Modern World said...

There is a theory that it takes 21 days to make something a habit. It is pretty useful when you want to start a new habit. Just give yourself 21 days of doing it and then it will become a habit and you won't need to try or struggle at it any more.

Anonymous said...

hahaha i never knew that you put me in your blog and showed off my amazing sleeping caps. ahhahahahha (=

AnnMarie said...

I finally made some hats with this pattern. Thank you! It's also the first sewing project with my daughter (almost 5). Making matching purple and green fleece ones. And she's loving learning to sew. This is a nice simple way to get started.