The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

Banner by Free Pretty Things for You.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Warmth and comfort.

When I was little I remember how Mum got so sick with migraines. It was awful. And I inherited it and came to understand her pain.

Now I am much better than I used to be and mostly I will get a bad headache without the full migraine. I think this comes from learning your triggers, learning to act the very second you feel a sign one is coming on and also there is a factor of many people do improve and have less as they age. 

One of my biggest helps is a heat pack. My pain will start usually in my neck. And a heat pack gives me more relief than anything else at all. But any pain, back, legs etc I will apply a heat pack. 

We all know if anything hurts the cold makes it worse. In fact the cold makes many people ache badly. Keeping warm and comfy is just so important. 

Yesterday I made a few new heat packs. I have been making them for years and I will usually make a couple of new ones a year. But I make them for Mum and the girls, all avid users. Chloe is the only one that doesn't get the headaches but she still loves her heat packs.

I began making them because you do need to replace them. I am guessing I heat mine up hundreds of times but eventually they deteriorate and you need new ones. 

In our local chemist they are about $30 each. This is what started me making them as they cost a couple of dollars to make and you can make them nicer, softer material etc.

I used some velvet to make this lot. They feel so nice.

Like anything with heat you need safety instructions. For a gift I write the instructions on a tag like above. Or you can print them, for both and for your own information google printable heat pack or wheat heat pack instructions so you have covered the safety aspect. I have used them for over ten years as have Mum and the girls with nothing but pleasure and no incidents of burning etc. The key is to not overheat. Here is a link for safety instructions, print them and add to your card if you make them as a gift.

They are heated in your microwave. Usually it is a 2 or 3 minute heating time depending on the size of the bag. I make largish ones because they stay hot longer and mine are 4 minute heating time.

To make one you can use clean wheat. I buy organic from a feed store in a giant bag as I make so many. I say for a large size one use about a kilo of grain. You can use barley ie pearl barley like goes in soup or rice. A smaller size would takes two packets of pearl barley or a pack of rice. The cover needs to be something lovely and soft but thick. 

The first time you heat some moisture is felt. That is just normal. If you have made a smaller one the first time I would heat 30 seconds at a time and heat until it is lovely and warm. Note how long this took and you will then know exactly for the future times. You must not heat too hot. Too hot and it will burn and is dangerous. Also microwave heating means once finished it can continue to heat inside so always set it aside for a minute and feel again. For children you would want to exercise extreme caution and er on the side of softly warm not hot. We grew up on hot water bottles which I still use if away with no microwave. But overall I think heat packs are safer.

You can make them any size or shape. I like a long shaped one as I can wrap it around the back of my neck. I think a guide is whatever you make fill it to about three quarters, you want it to be mouldable and moveable. It will then fit against your body beautifully. 

If you have tried one you will know. If not and you have aches and pains try it. Oh my goodness they are nice!

For me they save me a lot of pain and provide a lot of comfort. They save me money too. I take less pain killers due to these. They keep me warm and comfy. I have never used electric blankets either or bedroom heating, I always had a hot water bottle and now a heat pack. 

You can also make small ones to keep your hands warm. On pinterest I saw these in heart shapes, make to fit in your pockets inside your hands, for when you are waiting for the bus in the early morning and awfully cold times like that. If you do this I think 30 seconds or a minute would be the heating time, try in small increments. But how lovely. It reminds me of a story that in Ireland women heated potatoes for their childrens' pockets and hands to keep them warm in the freezing mornings.

If you like lavender and find it good for your headaches add a few drops. That can also help you settle down to sleep.

A no sew emergency version is to fill a large sock with a packet of pearl barley and tie a knot in the end. Heat for 30 seconds, shake, repeat... until it is lovely and warm. You can try the comfort factor this way. 

Here is a website that sells them and in hand sizes to give you the idea of options...

and here super cute ones for pockets...

Winter is coming and it's so much cooler at night already so I thought now is a good time to top up all our supplies. I really hope you find great pain relief and comfort from a heat pack as I do. For those of you thinking about it,  the relief is amazing, I can't describe it. 

I am baby sitting Houdini Chloe' budgie. He sure is chatty. He has an opinion on everything! I really love him, he is hilarious and sweet. And it's Monday, I have quite a list.

Have a wonderful week leading up to


  1. Those pink velvet heat packs look so comforting and touchable! Lovely ideas as always Annabel...x

    1. Thanks Mimi. I couldn't be without my heat packs. Thank you!xxx


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