Thursday, September 29, 2016

ELMO for Halloween

                My granddaughter loves Elmo.  So I needed to make her an Elmo costume for Halloween.  I went out and found a bright red onesie with a 4th of July theme stitched on the front. Would you believe I found it for $1.20 on the clearance rack!  It was impossible to find a plain red onesie at any local store. Everything has some sort of cute decoration.
 So I improvised.....

         I sewed a piece of red felt with a zig zag stitch onto the onesie. Then the white eyes with black pupils were stitched on. Next, the big orange nose and the smiling black mouth.

         I purchased 3 yards of red tulle to complete the costume.

       A two layered, four inch strip was cut off of the the entire 3 yard length. Now I had two pieces, 4 inches by 3 yards. This was folded in half, lengthwise, to make a 2 inch piece with four layers. I ran a basting stitch the length of the material  1/2 inch from the edge.  The thread was pulled to make the ruffle around Elmo's face. * The ruffle was then sewed in place by hand.  I had to made sure that it was not sewed too tightly or the onesie would pucker. 

     The remaining piece of material was folded in half fold to edge. This piece was about 12 inches by 3 yards. Again, a basting stitch was sewn about a half an inch from the folded edge. The thread was pulled to gather and make a large ruffle for the skirt.

    * Actually, the skirt was sewn onto the onesie first and then the face ruffle was added after so the face ruffle would overlap the skirt ruffle. 

        A child could wear this with red tights, leggings, or pants if they needed to cover their legs in case of cold weather.  You could leave off the skirt if it is intended for a boy's costume.

     This was so much fun to make. I looked a a lot of Elmo pictures on line to get inspired.

      Happy Halloween to All!

Please leave a comment if you have the time.  I'd love to hear from you.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Hardtack - A tasty treat on an explorer's ship

          My 5th graders were learning about early exploration of the 1440 and 1500s.  We read about the food that was eaten on these long voyages.  I found a very easy recipe online for hardtack.

Today I am linking up with Doodlebugs Teaching for a Five for Friday Linky Party. 

The recipe for Hardtack is very simple!
       4- 5 cups of flour
       2 cups of water
       3 tsp. salt
Mix the three ingredients into a dough. The dough will be on the  side.  Roll out dough to a thickness of 1/2 inch.  Shape into a rectangle.  Cut into 3X3 inch squares.  I cut mine a little smaller.  Poke holes into both sides.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. Turn each piece over and bake for another 30 minutes.   You are done!  Let the hardtack sit out all day until it is dry.  It will be hard as a rock.  Store in an airtight container.

       Parents and students made the hardtack at home and sent it in to school.  I soaked the hardtack in milk for a few hours in class.  Everyone  had a taste test or two with butter. Yum! It tasted a bit like Saltine Crackers only much harder.  Some of the kids enjoyed the treat.  Some were not as excited and put it in the trash after a bite or two. 

     I couldn't help myself when I saw some gummy worms in the candy isle one day.  I told the kids that sometimes bugs and worms got into the food supply on the sailing ships. The sailors would soak the hardtack in water so the bugs and worms would float to the top.  The these unwelcome friends could be removed.  So I handed out the gummy worms to get the point across.   It was a big hit.

         I received an email from a parent.  She said her son had been watching a post- Civil War series on AMC.  Hardback was mentioned.  Her son was so excited that he knew about the hardback and how it tasted.  It brought history to life.
    I guess that is why we are teachers.

Thanks for reading my blog. I hope this article can help you in some little way. Please leave a comment and come back again soon.

Enjoy the rest of this glorious day.