Everyone needs a place to put their treasures

When my daughter Gabi was in first grade (she just finished her freshman year of college!) she made me a treasure pouch at school.  I loved it.  I would occasionally find treasures in it–stones, little bits and pieces that Gabi liked, an occasional piece of jewelry.  I was so touched by her beautiful work and her thoughtfulness. Although its been a while since I found a treasure in my pouch, it still makes me smile whenever I look at it.

This is the treasure pouch that Gabi made me
This is the treasure pouch that Gabi made me

It also reminded me of when I was about that age–probably 8 or 9–I used to make wishing boxes for my mom.  I would take a box from shoes or a store and transform it into a wishing machine.  Then I would give it to my mom, tell her what it was and that it would make her wishes come true if she told it to the box, then I would hide around the corner to listen to what she wished for.  She would always wish for something like, “I wish I had a pillow to rest my head on.”  I found this very disappointing.  I wanted to know what her real wishes were, her heart’s desire.  I know she wanted to make a wish that I could make come true, and of course I would get the pillow or whatever she wanted for her.  I don’t know what I would have done if she wished for something she really wished for.  But I wanted to know and I wanted her to have what she wanted.  Anyhow, that was a long time ago.

A few weeks ago, when I was thinking about what I wanted to make with the families in my classes, I decided to make treasure pouches.  I had bought some nice white wool felt that I wanted to dye somehow.  I had the idea to color it with spray bottles filled with Kool-Aid.

spray bottle filled with kool-aid and food coloring
spray bottle filled with kool-aid and food coloring

It was harder than I thought to find the colors that I wanted in kool-aid.  I ended up with blue raspberry, grape and cherry, then I got some food coloring for green and yellow.  I put about 2 cups of water in the bottle with 2 regular sized packets of kool-aid or most of a small bottle of food coloring.  At first the smell of kool-aid reminded me of my childhood.  We drank lots of it in the summers when I was growing up.  At first it did remind me of my childhood summers, but after the first couple of days, the smell got kind of annoying.  But anyhow, we had great fun spraying the strips of felt with the colors.  We also had some white yarn that I had handspun to either spray or use to soak up the extra color on the plastic cafeteria trays we used for the spraying.  I let the felt sit for a couple of hours, then I squeezed out the excess and hung them on the drying rack to dry.  It was fun to look at all the different ways the children and parents sprayed–some were totally saturated, others had just a few squiggles of color.

strips of felt hanging up to dry
strips of felt hanging up to dry
felt and yarn on the drying rack
felt and yarn on the drying rack

 

 

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I had bought some large t-shirts for the little ones to wear for painting this year. I put them on the floor under the wet felt to catch the drips and they have become quite beautiful.
Anyhow, here is the pouch that I made, front and back.

front of the finished treasure pouch
front of the finished treasure pouch
and back
and back

As always the ones that the parents made are beautiful and varied.  I wish I had taken some pictures of them, but I didn’t.  But I have heard that many of the children are really enjoying them–and why not?  A treasure pouch is a handy thing to have!

Coming soon!!!I used the extra colors to dye some wool fleece that we have been using to make butterflies.

I am a writer, handworker, artist and teacher (a WHAT!), and a mom of two beautiful daughters who are amazingly 17 and 21. I am working on getting my first book, a fantasy novel for young people, published and am busy spinning on my new spinning wheel. I have been a Waldorf early childhood teacher for 10 years now, and before that, I was a lawyer. Teaching is much more fun.

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