View from my window: This is the scene in a lot of places these days.
Cold weather inspires some people to bake, because it also warms the house. The cake with orange sauce, served with Yorkshire Gold tea was very warming during this fierce ice storm, raining ice crystals that made quite a noise when it landed on the roof, porch and ground. ( I am imitating pictures of tea time at hotels in winter.) For more photos, type in "tea time at small hotels in UK in winter" and click images.
Easy Stitch 'n Save McCalls 9201 (M9201)
The flannel at Walmart is so nice, I brought home a whole bolt of it. The brand may be Waverly. A flannel nightgown will last a long time, and when it thin, can be used for a petticoat.
Covers made for hot water bottles are quite pretty and clever, shown by these Pinterest pictures. Above: quilted fabric; below: hand knit covers. These make the bottle soft and comfortable; not too hot for your feet. There is no need to remove these covers, as the bottle is filled at the top where the spout is.
Here is my quick and easy version of the hot water bottle cover, sewn from a piece of worn-out towel, leaving the top open. You might be able to do this using a small face or hand size towel, sparing you the cutting and measuring. Just fold the small towel, machine stitch two sides, then turn inside out.
The local power company suggests if the power goes out in the night, get under the covers with a hot water bottle at your feet.
If you do not sew and need a soft cover for your hot water bottle, insert it in a flannel pillowcase and wrap the fabric around it several times.
Make them more supportive for your feet if doing housework, by wearing thick wool socks.
Ps. I know a lot of people who use electric blankets with no adverse affect on their health, thankfully. I used to have one but was not comfortable with the type of warmth it provided, finding that I felt better with the weight of blankets and comforters. I also like a heavy coat on top of the blankets, at the foot of the bed. I was also cautious about having electricity so close to the body so many hours.
Here is something to read about electric blankets http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/02/24/is-your-electric-blanket-safe.aspx