OK so today is the first day of preschool……
Well in preparation for preschool we needed a few things. Especially since this will be Bella’s first year. Grandma Fish got her a backpack and matching lunchbox but she still needed a nap mat. Last year we sent K with a 3 dollar roll out mat that looked like a yoga mat and her dora blanket and a small pillow. This year I was determined they would have something more practical, simple and pretty. So I started doing some nap mat research. There seemed to be a few types ranging from ugly blue on one side red on the other plastic folded up ones like I had as a kid 20 something years ago all the way up to adorable built in pillow and blanket pretty fabric ones that rolled up and had a carrying handle. OK, so the practical, simple (all-in-one, mat/pillow/blanket) and pretty was best represented by the most expensive ones out there. These ranged in price from 40-80 dollars each! Now with two girls that are almost twins (10 months 3 weeks apart) who want everything their sister has…. the price would be 80-160 dollars… plus shipping! OK well if you don’t know, minister’s families have tight budgets, and youth minister’s families have tighter budgets. So I knew trying to convince my husband that these were a-dor-a-ble and simple and practical wasn’t worth my breath for that price. Also I couldn’t justify the price to myself either :( so I was sad and frustrated by it all. Until I saw that some crafty moms had attempted sewing their own. I sew! It looks semi-difficult, but I’m always up for a challenge!
I was now a momma on a mission! I decided I would not spend more than 10 dollars per child to make them and do my best to use some materials I already had. So off to Hobby Lobby I went and found the sweetest corduroy in a chocolate-brown with bright flowers all over it.
I was in love with the soft pretty corduroy but not in love with the price, 9.99 a yd. and well I needed 3 yds of this. Thank goodness I got 40 % off though because it was a seasonal (fall I guess) fabric so it was really 5.99 a yd and cost 18 dollars total. So with very little of my 20 dollar budget left I got a roll of matching hot pink/magenta ribbon (half off) for a dollar to make the ties with. Now down to zero money left I had to come up with everything else from my craft supplies. So I went home and found a fleece blanket in the same bright green as the fabric I’d bought cut it in half and used it as the attached blanket. I found a barely used bag of polyfil, to stuff the pillows with and took two old baby blankets from the girls boxes of baby stuff and used them as the liner for the mat part. There were a few more things like buttons, thread etc. but you get the idea. So after many hours measuring, cutting, pinning, sewing on machine and by hand, a little seam ripping, and stuffing…. the girls have cutesy, made with love, not-so-professional-looking nap mats for preschool.
I am happy with them all in all. They aren’t perfect, but they only cost me 20 dollars and some time. Total savings 60-140 dollars! The girls love them and know I worked hard on them out of love for them, that is more important than buying them any day even if we could.
Happy napping to my girls….