Saturday, June 18, 2011

Dian Thomas Rules!

My Homemakers Journal would not be complete without a list of Dian Thomas' church magazine articles and books.  Sister Thomas helped to shape my idea of a homemaker, mom, and Scout leader.  She taught preparedness in a clever and interesting way.  Most of the ideas recorded below have been field-tested by my clan and me (and the folks at church and scouts who participated in these activities with us).  I start with great outdoor dinner tips, and then a short sample article.  There's also a list of articles to read, bio articles and her books.

Tacos in a Frito's Bag
I love Dian's Instant Taco idea in "Backyard Dining," (New Era article sourced below).  Southern Living magazine had the same idea and used single-serve Frito's eaten directly in their little pouch--so cute! 

Dian has a great idea for using embroidery hoops and plastic wrap to put over bowls of food and keep the insects out, and to blow a fan on the food to keep insects away and the rest of us cool.  I can totally visualize her Wheel Barrow Salad Bar--I can't wait to try it!  Plus she includes recipes like apples on a stick--tastes like apple pie--great for autumn fires.  And everyone has to try making icecream in a can even if you're not a scout :0)

"When Children Play Indoors," Ensign, Feb. 1981 (scroll down some)
Do children challenge your normal good nature on a stormy day by whining, "What can I do?"  A few well-planned activities will help restore order and good cheer.
Sit-down Scavenger Hunt:  Give each child an old catalog or magazine, a pair of scissors, and an envelope to organize his "finds."  Then give each a list of ten to fifteen specific items to find.
If not all of your children read, divide into teams with a reader on each team, or give the group as a whole o ne list of items that everyone must find, and have the older children read the list aloud.  The first child to cut out pictures of all the items on the list wins.
Front Room Olympics: Hold a series of indoor games.  Some activities might include--
Discus throw, using a paper plate
Shot put, with securely tied, blown-up paper bags or balloons
Javelin throw, using a plastic drinking straw
Fifty-yard dash, blowing a ping-pong or cotton ball a designated distance
Relay, using two foot-sized pieces of cardboard. One person "runs" by hopping from one piece of cardboard to the next, while his partner moves the pieces into place as fast as he can.
Collage Decorating:  Let children cut pictures and words from magazines that express their interests, and arrange and paste the cutouts on pieces of butcher paper.  For a permanent remembrance, shellac or frame the collages and hang them on bedroom doors or walls.

More of Dian's Church Magazine Articles
Dutch Oven Cooking,” New Era, Jul 1974
"Tall Can Grill," New Era Sep 1974
"Rock Cooking," New Era July 1975
"Non-utensil Cooking," New Era May 1976
Stick Cooking,” New Era, Jul 1977
Backyard Barbecue,” New Era, May 1979
Backyard Dining,” New Era, Jun 1985
Tin Can Cooking,” Ensign, June 1974
Tin Can Date,” New Era, Jul 1982
Tricky Treats,” New Era, Oct 1982
Make-It-Yourself Christmas,” New Era, Dec 1982
Pizza with Pizzazz,” New Era, Jun 1984
Incredible Edible Valentines,” New Era, Jan 1985
Creative Birthday Cakes,” New Era, Mar 1987
(Plastic) Bag of Tricks,” Ensign, Feb. 1980
All-Family Shopping Trip,” Ensign, July 1979

Dian's Bio
"Unusual as Usual," Ensign Dec. 1990
"The Combustion Point," Ensign June 1984

Dian's Books
Backyard Roughing It Easy
Many of those who enjoy the outdoors are already familiar with New Era contributor Dian Thomas’ Roughing It Easy series. Her latest work, however, will open her world of creative cooking to a new crowd—the backyard, back porch, and patio picnickers who can’t always break away to the hills. The volume is full of recipes, ideas for cleaning up, and tons of energy savers (both for the cook and the pocketbook), as well as thoughts on unique party ideas and family activity suggestions. Imagine ironing a burrito or pizza made with pocket bread for your father on family night, or using a wheelbarrow as a charcoal grill! Those are only two of hundreds of ideas in this exciting cookery guide.

Roughing It Easy, II
She’s done it again! Dian Thomas has written another fun, informative, timely book about the art of outdoor living. It’s called Roughing It Easy, II.What the first Roughing It Easy didn’t have (and we thought it had it all), the second has. It includes sections on car camping, recipes for different sources of heat, how to create sanitary living situations, the preparation of TV dinners in the out-of-doors, and the latest method of cooking: solar heat cooking. Dian has collected ideas that are easy, fun, and practical, making out-door-living living rather than constant work. With her suggestions you can spend your time enjoying the scenery instead of fighting to survive. Roughing It Easy, II is written with humor and is easy to read. Even if you have Dian’s first book, you’ll probably want her second, too.  ("FYI," New Era Nov. 1977)

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