I learned to sew when I was in the 5th grade not because I wanted to but because I was made to. My grandma signed me up for sewing classes, I wanted to play basketball. My mom made me take sewing lessons and apologize to my grandma for my embarrassing out burst on how I didn’t want to take stupid sewing classes. I also took Home Economics in Junior High (absolute disaster! My sewing partner ran over his hand with the sewing machine and my cooking group left the oven on over night when I was out with strep – we almost burnt down the school.) I came out of Home Economics with a C-/D+, I did get an A on my zipper install, since my sewing partner ran over his hand, I ended up getting a D on my final. My cooking skills weren’t much better, I tried really hard but my pretzels were not edible (burnt and doughy.) I hated cooking but I hated sewing even more. Then something happened… it was called college. I lived 2,000 miles away from my mom and grandma, so if I needed something sewn I had to do it.
Fast forward 20 years later… I am eternally grateful my grandma and my mom making me take sewing classes. I remember my first button I sewed in 10 years took me 2 hours and 4 band-aids (yes, I was that bad!) I slowly regained my memory on sewing. I started small… a button here, a button there, then a hem or two – at the time I hand sewed everything. I was then given a Singer sewing machine from one of my dear friends. I made a quilt, a skirt, some curtains and some other things. My sewing machine died a slow, painful death about 2 years ago. I was in the market for a new sewing machine, my grandma offered to send me hers. I jumped on it, it was a Memory Craft 6000 that she never used because she has 2 black Singers and never got use to the “computerized” sewing machine. It arrived a couple weeks before Christmas and I started sewing. In a way I haven’t stopped since I got the sewing machine, as much as I like my sewing machine I still love sewing by hand, especially felt.
There are several reasons why here are my top 5:
1. I don’t have to drag the sewing machine out everytime I need to sew.
2. I can watch TV while I sew.
3. It is easier to sew smaller pieces of felt by hand than to use a machine.
4. It gives the pieces a little more personality.
5. I can lock myself in the bathroom for 5 minutes and sew a square on something. It makes me feel like I accomplished something during the day.
So why have I blabbered on about sewing, sewing machines, and my Home Economic days? Because my Travel Checkers and Dominoes were reviewed on One Day At A Time Blog I am extremely honored and humbled by this. Kozy Kiddo also put a shout out on her blog (thank you!) When I first came up with the idea of the Travel Checkers and Dominoes I was thinking about several things:
1. A game with no magnets – Magnets are bad if swallowed (I have young children, I don’t want games with magnets.)
2. Want to be able to stash it in a purse (i.e. my purse, I carry a small purse.)
3. Fit as many games into 1 bag as possible but still make it affordable
4. Fit in a glove compartment of a car.
5. Fit in a storm kit (i.e. Hurricane Kit)
I thought of many games that would work but settled on Checkers and Dominoes because it reminded me of summers at camp. My family sold our camp when I was in the 3rd grade but I still remember the screen house and playing checkers (and losing horribly) with Auntie Alice or dominoes with Grandma Helen. Checkers and dominoes was what I played at camp and will always hold a special place in my heart, even when Auntie Alice kicked my butt at checkers (meaning I lost several dollars a day to her.)
I have been slowly (and I mean slowly plugging) away at making more felt items for my Etsy Store. I have finally completed an Ant Game, a Monkey Game, and 3 more Checker Games. I took pictures and just need to put them up on the store. Being that everything is hand sewn (or almost) everything is hand sewn it takes quite a bit of time.
Here is the Checker Board with checkers and dominoes. I have modified the bags a little bit I added ribbon instead of the Velcro to close everything because I thought it would keep it closed better and a little bit better presentation. The inside pocket still has a Velcro closure and there are two little pockets (one for dominoes and one for checkers) with Velcro closures.
Today was my happy dance day and I once again want to thank Alena with Creating Childhood Memories One Day at a Time and Lauren at Kozy Kiddo for all the nice things you ladies have said about my Travel Checkers and Dominoes.