Homemade Pinecone and Sawdust Firestarters
Thanks Lois! Tawra
Hot Pads With Aroma
Cut two seven inch by seven inch squares of material. Put the squares together with the right sides together.
Sew around all four edges of the square. Leave a two inch space open.
Turn the square right side out. Fill the square with two cups of rice, two ounces of whole cloves and two cinnamon sticks. You could also just scent the rice with cinnamon oil.
Fold the raw edges in and pin together. Stitch the opening closed with a sewing machine. When setting a hot dish on the pad, it will give off a pleasant aroma. I used cotton fabric, with a double layer of white fleece as extra padding, then sewed around, leaving a 3-4″ opening, turned right side out, poured rice between the two layers of fleece, added some potpourri oil and sewed the opening shut.
Potpourri Spice Mix
(A loving little gift to include with cards or to give neighbors)
Contents of package:
1/2 – 1 tsp. or more of each spice of cloves, ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon.
Directions: Simmer contents in a potpourri pot or in a small saucepan on the stove, along with about 1 tsp. cooking oil and a cup of water. Continue adding water as it evaporates.
(Note: Spices bought in bulk at a natural foods coop cost as little as a tenth the amount as in a grocery store!)
Pinecone Fire Starters
Melt paraffin or old candles in a coffee can placed in a pan of hot water on the stove. If color is needed, add old crayons. Add a few drops of scented oil to the wax – cinnamon, cloves, orange. Dip each pinecone into the melted wax. You can do that by tying a candlewick or heavy crochet thread to the top of each pinecone to make it easier to dip into the melted wax. Allow the wax to harden, while holding or resting it on wax paper between dips. For gift-giving, arrange pinecones in a basket with a note of instructions: Add 2-3 pinecone fire starters to kindling wood when starting a fire in the fireplace. Light the wicks.
Another version of this gift is to dip pinecones into melted wax several times, without the wicks, using tongs. My one adult son and I gathered pinecones and made these one year over Thanksgiving vacation. He used the nicer ones on his Christmas tree branches and they looked really good!
Sawdust Fire Starters
Fill muffin tins with cupcake liners. Fill each with sawdust. If your husband doesn’t do woodwork, anyone who does would be thrilled to give you as much sawdust as you want. Melt old candles in a double boiler or in a candle warmer. A small amount of candle fragrance would give off a nice aroma. Carefully pour melted wax into each cupcake liner, by pouring into a measuring cup first.
Allow to dry thoroughly and remove from muffin tins. Package into cellophane bags to give as gifts, with instructions attached – “Fire Starters – Toss one or two fire starters into fireplace with logs to help ignite a good fire.” Add the name of the fragrance used – “Cinnamon Fire Starters.”