For a few Craftin’ Monday posts I’m going to focus on the underutilized essentials we have in our pantries and unconventional ways they can be used. Rice, for example, can do so much more than we give it credit for. Not only is it one of the main staples of many nationalities diets. It can also evoke warm memories and keep you from freezing on a cold winter’s day. Below you’ll find a collection of links to some of my favorite ideas as well as a recipe from me and a few anecdotes::
Rice socks- http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Rice-Sock My mom is the Rice Sock Queen. She used to make us these every year and would even embroider pretty designs along the tops to help designate whose sock was whose. I like to warm mine up until super warm and then place it at the foot of the bed and draw the covers up about 15 minutes before I get in so that the bed gets nice and toasty. Super nice on a cold Winter’s night.
Along the same lines as rice socks, but involves a little more sewing than I’m capable of until I finally figure out my sewing machine… Rice bags- http://www.ehow.com/how_6467112_make-rice-neck-warmers.html
Stuffed animals: http://www.ehow.com/info_8417366_ideas-sewing-stuffed-animals.html I love this idea and fully plan on doing something like this for my children. BooBoo loves his stuffies and I think it would be awesome to make him one for his 3rd (eek they grow too fast!) birthday in Auguist.
Sensory Rice: http://www.powerfulmothering.com/how-to-make-color-rice-for-sensory-play/ Originally an idea I saw on eLeMeNO-P Kids (a favorite WAHM of mine who is also a genius when it comes to teaching kids. Just check out her sensory play Pinterest Board) I can’t wait to do this with BooBoo and Goofy Girl! As a former ParaProfessional in a Life Skills classroom, I know how important sensory play can be for kids of all abilities as it can help stimulate senses and encourage their imaginations.
Homemade ‘Rice-a-Roni’: One of my own inventions and a great go-to when you’ve put dinner off until the very last moment and the masses are clamoring for food. The amounts here will vary depending on how many people you're serving. Saute uncooked rice in butter until golden brown. Pour in enough water to cover rice then cook over medium high heat until water is out then add milk to cover rice and 2 TB butter with flavorings of choice (I love Italian seasonings, but Creole, Greek, or Mexican flavorings are great too), turn heat to medium low and cook until liquid is gone.
McGee and I first bonded over our shared love of Hiyao Miyazaki films and anime, so the Japanese culture holds a special place in my heart. I have not yet been brave enough to try to make these, but I love eating them! Rice Balls-http://www.instructables.com/id/Simple-Rice-Balls/
Please feel free to add your own rice ideas in the comments and I'll add them here!