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Rice Mice

The wife of one of my professors wrote this book for her 3 small children in 1978 when she was terminally ill, to share some of her memories from her childhood in Denmark.  Her husband, Sam Refetoff, gave me a copy when my children were very young and I made Rice Mice for them.  In the book every mouse is accompanied by a poem and my children wrote poems to capture their individual mouse's personalities.  


Some time during the ensuing years I made two Christmas Rice Mice and every year they are part of our table decoration.  They are approximately 5 inches high and filled with standard white rice.


I sketched them last year for my journal page on December 24th and then again last evening.  This year's painting is more accurate because I took the time to put in the polka dots!  Since I didn't post the journal page last year, here are both 2007 and 2008.  This year I painted a shiny gold acrylic background around the mice - wish it could be scanned and look that way!





Several years ago I made Rice Mice (singular is Rouse Mouse!) for my 3 oldest grandchildren as stocking stuffers, using scraps from quilts that I made for them.


I think it might be time this morning to make one for each of the baby grandchildren for their stockings.  Those for the children have embroidered eyes instead of buttons - which is not nearly as cute, but much safer!



These are as adorable as they could be!!!! And what a great idea for your grands!! Be sure to post them!! Merry Christmas to you and yours, hon!

How utterly charming, fun and memorable, the actual mice and the accompanying history. A terrific tradition as well. Thank you for sharing - and as our last name is Rice, this would be a fun addition to my Grandchildrens Christmas traditions!!

Love the drawing of the rice mice...the grandkids must have loved them!

I love your rice mice and I love sewing too. Can you share the pattern for the rice mice, or can I purchase a copy? I would love to make some for decoration next year.

I'm so far behind on sketching this week. It's been a whirlwind of activity. I hope to settle down some while I'm off from work for Christmas vacation and do some more sketching.

I too would like to know how to make the adorable mice. Is the book still available?

Your rice mice are adorable - I'd love to make some as well. I can't find the book in print anywhere on the internet - would it be possible to purchase a copy of the pattern from you?

wow, these are delightfully charming! as are the sketches :))
please add my name to the list of interest in the pattern, though i would prefer to know more about the -book-: do you know where a copy can be found? i've been internet ferretting for a few hours, and though i can find the title, i can't find available copies. any info you can provide would be wonderful!!
thank you,
~christi :)
virginia beach, VA

these are absolutely adorable. As a survivor, diagnosed in 1975, I applaud the author's courage to leave a legacy of love and whimsy. I, too, would like to find the book/and or pattern for purchase.

I am an old friend of Shirley Levine's and in an e-mail this morning she told me about this. What an utterly strong woman who initiated this, and the resulting Rice Mice are so meaningful, fun, and cleverly made. I would love to gift my two granddaughters with them and also my great nieces. It would be pure pleasure to be a small part of this.


I am making Rice Mice again. Over 30 years ago...made for my daughter. They are fun and delightful. I found the book on my bookshelf and couldn't wait to get to the sewing machine.

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