Last week, while storing away last season's coats, sweaters, hats and gloves, I was frustrated to find that just about every pair of gloves and mittens was missing its mate.
Instead of throwing out the orphaned gloves and mittens, my kids and their friends came up with an idea.
They attached the gloves and mittens to their favorite small stuffed animals to make snappy hand puppets.
Stuffed toys that work especially well for this project are the creepy-crawler type like spiders and worms. Or, use sea creatures such as a crab or fish.
For each puppet, cut a 1-by-1-inch square of a hook-and-loop fastener. Sew one side to the underside of a stuffed figure. Sew the matching piece to the top of a glove or mitten. Inexpensive stretch gloves are perfect for hands of all sizes.
To put the puppets in action, slip a glove on your child's hand and attach the stuffed toy to the glove where the hook-and-loop fastener pieces meet. If the toy is too wobbly, sew additional pieces to the glove and toy.
Your child's fingers become the creature's legs, tentacles or fins, depending on the stuffed toy you choose. Let the show begin as you and your kids create new worlds of imagination.
To share your comments or ideas for family projects, write Donna Erickson, Features Department, The Sun, Baltimore 21278.