Here in Florida we seldom go anywhere without a cooler/icechest with cold drinks a damp cloth and some kind of snack or snacks, especially during the warmer months. Those commercially available gel packs and hard plastic icepacks are expensive and take a while to refreeze. This super inexpensive alternative refreezes quickly and keeps drinks cool and candy bars unmelted for several hours. I can't claim credit for the idea, I saw it on the internet and I tried it immediately. It works great and I thought I would share it here.
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Step 1: Supplies
I went to the Dollar Store and bought a bag of sponges and a box of ziplock baggies. Total cost, $2.14us
( you see where this is going don't you!)
Step 2: Build It
take one or two sponges and get them wet, wring out most of the water, you want it wet and full but not dripping, place the sponges in the baggie and stick them in the freezer
Step 3: CHILL!
One thing I've found really convenient about these "icepacks" is the way you can mold them around bottles and cans and when it is REALLY hot and humid (102 w90%humidity today) you can squeeze some of that cold water on your neck or neck rag. This idea would probably work just as well as heat pads by simply microwaving the wet sponges to keep things warm in the winter ( of course I haven't tried that yet)