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It’s starting to get cold here in Alabama. When that happens, it usually means sickness is approaching and will hit us at least once in the coming months. I started thinking about how we want to handle sicknesses in our house and what traditions we might want to implement with our young kids. That got the idea brewing for this Stuffed Comfort Cuddle Dino Tutorial that I’m sharing with you today.
My son likes to sit on his knees when he is at the kitchen table. I think he gets some height from that but it makes his legs fall asleep. The first time it happened, he was crying and didn’t know how to describe what was going on. I cuddled with him on the couch and wrapped him in an Alabama football blanket and helped him pump his legs until the sensation passed. We are constantly reminding him to sit on his bottom and not his knees but occasionally his legs will fall asleep. He always asks for the Alabama blanket when that happens. I am constantly amazed at how my kids remember the slightest details and latch on to things that bring them comfort, even when I never intended for the Alabama blanket to become “a thing”.
I wanted to capitalize on that tendency with him and create a stuffed cuddle comfort item. Something that comes out when he is feeling sick and he can associate with getting better and being comforted. Since my kids are so into dinosaurs right now, I thought what better comfort item than that?
I am not a sewer; I can do a semi straight line and I know very little in the way of sewing terminology but even these guys were easy for me and only took me about an hour to complete both of them.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Sewing Machine
- 1/2 yard of fabric (I used Jersey Knit that I had leftover)
- Poly Fill stuffing
- Felt for dino spikes – optional
- Scotch tape
2 – Trace the patterns onto your fabric. I recommend using a big black marker, it went on the fabric more smoothly, just make sure it doesn’t bleed through to your table/workspace. Since I used Jersey Knit and the pattern was the same on both sides, I didn’t need to worry about which way I traced the pattern on. If you have a front side to your fabric, you’ll need to make sure to flip your pattern over when you trace your second, back side piece so the design of the fabric will be facing outward on the finished stuffed comfort cuddle dino.
3 – I added some embellishments on to my dinos. I tied a little bow that matches ones I’ve made for my daughter. I hand stitched that on to the single cut out fabric before making the dino.
4 – Place your two front pieces, facing each other, together and pin together. I drew out some spikes for the t-rex on felt. I put that in-between the front two pieces and pinned it altogether.
5 – I sewed around the edges with a 1/4″ allowance. I left a 2″ inch opening on the bottom of the appataosaurus and on the belly of the t-rex to allow me to flip it inside out. Once it was sewn and back stitched at the end, I cut some little slits on the rounded edges (to help keep everything smooth when it’s flipped) being sure not to cut the seam.
6 – Then I stuck my fingers in the 2″ inch opening and pulled the fabric out to flip it out right side. I used a pen with a cap on to push out any edges, like the tail, until I was satisfied with it.
7 – I then grabbed small handfuls of the filling and stuffed each dino. I pressed down on the filling to even it out and got it to where it felt full enough. I then closed up the opening with a needle and some thread by hand. I could have just folded that in and stitched around the edge of the whole piece but I liked how it looked without that.
That was it. I’m sure sure someone with more advanced sewing skills would be able to do this faster than me but my kids loved it and it holds up well. This could be done for any shape or animal your child is interested in.
I am totally loving the way they turned out!
Since this project was on my mind and I was in “prepping” mode for the times my kids will be sick this season, I started thinking of other things I could get ready. While I was out running errands and at Walgreens picking up some mascara, I figured it was the perfect place and time to stock up. Whenever I can be more productive and reduce store trips, it saves my sanity!
Soups – check. Tomato soup has been a favorite of mine, but chicken noodle is always a good idea to have on hand. Lots of crackers – check. A new thermometer – check. We keep one in both bathrooms, the kids’ room and now also in the diaper bag. Always a good idea to have handy. Small water bottles – check. My kids resist water, especially when they don’t feel well but the small, cute size and the specialness of not having them everyday, helps get them to drink those fluids they need as they rest and recover. Apple juice – check. You know, for when they still won’t drink enough water. I also zipped down the pediatric aisle and grabbed a bottle of Children’s Advil® – check. They have a lot of flavor options but I picked the Children’s Advil® in sugar-free, dye-free berry flavor. One thing that I love about Children’s Advil® is that it brings fever down faster, and it keeps it down longer with less medicine than Children’s Tylenol®. I’m all about giving my kids less medicine whenever possible but at the same time getting them relief.
When I got home, I read the carton of the Children’s Advil® and then took a black marker and noted the date, my son’s weight, age and current dosage, right on the carton. (My daughter isn’t old enough for children’s medicine so no need to add her info yet.) I always get flustered when my kids aren’t feeling well so little things like that help make it easy and less stressful later on. I put the medicine in our kid’s basket I keep high on the shelf in a locked closet and tucked the stuffed cuddle comfort dinos in. I put the soups, crackers, water and juice in the back of a shelf in the pantry where they won’t be pillaged so we still have them on hand when we need them. Now we are all set to take on sickness! Less to worry about when it hits and being prepared helps me feel better able and confident to comfort and take care of my kids.
I always want to call my mom and have her take care of me when I don’t feel well. There is a great connection there and such comfort. It’s so strange to think that I am now that person to my kids. Be sure to check out how Children’s Advil® can help reduce your child’s fever and provide you both relief when your little ones are sick. I’d love to hear about what things you do to prep for sickness and provide comfort to your kids!