Wanblee March News and Another Simple Project

I have been working on my bags over the last week and a half and have made about several bags for the kids, some backpacks and some tote bags. They are easy, quick ,functional and colorful . Each pattern I have tried has a few things I would change but in general are patterns that work. Love to know how many of you are making bags for the kids and for what age. Certainly bags can be bought too. Bags will be used to collect the eggs in but also for many other uses. And remember the environmental impact of using cloth rather than plastic!

I also mentioned in the last blog that you could make some kids’ toys if you preferred instead of a bag, kids love to have cuddly toys, especially the younger ones. Or design an activity for a child. Young moms need some tools(toys, activities,  books ) so they have something to use to interact with their child, to quiet their child, and kids need to have lots of different kinds of stimuli to develop their brains. And of course, a toy is something that belongs to them and is used in many instances as a comfort item for a child. Lots of ideas out there on our SFK pattern page and many are on my Pinterest site  and the Sew For Kids Pinterest site. And of course, adding a few books to your box will certainly be welcomed by a child.  Kids can not learn to read if they do not have books. Summer is fast approaching and books are needed to maintain skills they learned in the past year.

I was talking to Jerome High Horse last night and asked him what day the Easter egg hunt and party will take place. Easter is April 20th but because families and relatives like to spend the day together that day, the egg hunt will take place on April 11 th . So items for the party need to be mailed by the end of March/early April so they have an idea where they have to fill in the gaps or do without. The party is scheduled to be held in the community park that several community members are building. They have a baseball field near the park and a team of kids that practice there. Two Rez men volunteer their time and pay for gas and food for the kids to get them to the games. Jerome hooked up with a past professional player and has asked if he could help with some uniforms for the kids. The community eventually wants to build a basketball court for the kids to practice their hoops but that has to wait until money comes in for such a project  They have a volleyball net set up, a gift from a supporter of SFK , from the last 4th of July party. Currently they are building picnic tables for the site from pallets that come off the NAHA truck each month. Only some nails, screws and a few more hand drills and some stain are needed and hopefully volunteers coming to the Rez will help with that need. Jerome has a table saw. The young men want to build them and Jerome is willing to show them how to build them since he has a background in construction. The good thing is that the community is working together on the project. And since spring break happens the end of March , volunteers who come will help them build the tables as well. There will be games set up for all the participate in at the party after the hunt and food.

Worldwide Hunger Relief in WI  is providing  all the food for the Easter party which will be a barbecue. Some people will come down from WI and bring the food and help with the party.  There will be brats, hot dogs and hamburgers, buns ,condiments and drinks. And they will provide the candy to stuff in the plastic eggs. Monetary donations are accepted on their site if you wish to donate. That is to help with gas to transport the food and the cost of the food. Also they usually bring down other needed items that people in their community donate. Plastic eggs are still needed so if you can include a package or 2 in a box which you send that would help them get to the 5000 they need. Cheryl T sent along 500 , a good start to that total. Last year the hunt was held in the snow! Always items like paper plates, napkins and plastic cutlery are needed so if you have any throw them in the box too.  And watch for them on sale in the future.  Remember they now have a storage truck. Carol M just sent 1000 paper cups along so that need has been fulfilled. Thank you Carol. Also they would like to do as done in the past , provide 2 -16 inch bikes and 2 -20 inch bikes for 2 boys and 2 girls at the party. Donations are welcomed for those as well at the WWHR site . Total cost for the 4 bikes is $200. Jerome buys them in Rapid City at Walmart. The bikes are dependent upon the donations but the kids do love them.

The  unpaid heating bill at the Kennedy Hall has been paid by a group of great volunteers of the Pine Ridge Elders group who make and send warm items and other household needs to the High Horses to give out locally , but  also to anyone across the Rez who has a need. The building management will now be overseen by Jerome and the fee for using the building will be collected faithfully each time it is used so that the heating bill gets paid and on time. The community needs this building for many things such as NAHA deliveries, parties, movie nights,  the women’s sewing circle, police meetings, education, bingo, funerals, give aways etc. Without this building there will be no place for people to meet for events that bring the community together so good management is the key to making that happen. Ideas are being looked at to earn money for the activities and the heat. Ideas from all of you are also welcome .

This past week, 6 inches of snow fell on the ground. Jerome and his Woodchucks had to get out and cut more wood as the pile had dwindled to next to nothing and they were receiving calls from the local people who were out of wood. The days are longer so Jerome and his crew were able to work until 7 pm. Thankfully they have the warm items sent to the Rez, many made by several of you. Yesterday I got a call from Kidz Quiltz, a group from CO, and Wilma Hamilton, the Director, said they  have another 30 warm quilts to send to the High Horses. That will go soon and will be given out when a call comes in.

I was talking to Theresa the other day about getting the women and girls’ sewing club up and running especially now that the Kennedy Hall issue has been solved. In talking to her, I was sad to hear that some of the moms who want to breastfeed are having trouble maintaining their milk supply due to their nutritional status. Having the women’s group will be a place where young moms can come and maybe get some tips and recipes that work for the foods they can buy with food stamps or get in the commodities so that the babies get breast milk for 6 months or more. It offers so many benefits to the baby. Might be a project we can think about , making a recipe book. The Kennedy Hall does have a kitchen so hands on instruction is possible. Nurse Debbie is also starting a breastfeeding support group for the moms in the community, something she feels called to do. They want to meet the Baby Friendly hospital guidelines set out by Michelle Obama in her Let’s Move campaign.

A request has gone out from Hearts of the Sacred Spirit for donations to buy garden tools, fencing and chickens/ feed for  community garden area. Seed packets are certainly welcomed as well. The pallets are going to be used to build the chicken coops. Again volunteers will be recruited from the community and from visitors looking for ways to help the people. So if you can make a small donation to Hearts gardening project or send a packet of seeds that project will have a chance of success.

That is the latest news from the Rez. If you can help with any of the needs that I mentioned in the blog, that will help ensure programs are successful.

Please send your bags and any other items here. Please either enclose a SASE or your email address in the box as they like to acknowledge your gift. Share your photos with us and do let us know if you have made any bags for the kids for the Easter project.  As always thanks from Sew For Kids.

Photos . We want to add your photos of your projects on our site. Send them along and will post them here. I will post some of mine soon as well so check back here this week.


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