Sunday, September 14, 2008

Baby quilts

I love quilt month. It has given me the opportunity to blog about many of the things that make our daily lives rich and unique. Here is one such example.

The women in our neighboorhood have a tradition. Everytime on of their daughters or sons has a baby, a quilt is made. It is mostly coordinated and constructed by the mothers in the neighboorhood, but Ten Finger Workshop and I have been in on making a few too.

We come from a close knit community with very talented and loving mothers, all whom have become friends too now that we are having kids of our own. It is hard to explain what it means to receive on of these quilts upon the birth of a child, but it means a lot. Everytime I was frustruated about colic, unable to sleep or navigating some such parenting trial, I only had to look at these quilts to know that many families have gone before me, and lived (rasied wonderful kids) to tell about it.

Each quilt is unique and the individuals invited to contribute squares vary from family to family. I recieved two quilts when the twins were born and a third when Madeline arrived. Below are some of my favorite blocks, but they are all special, unique and made with love.

Essentially, when a daughter or son is expecting, one of the mothers from the neighboorhood sends out an invitation for squares. They go to family members, friends (near and far; many squares are sent internationally) and the neighboorhood women. All who can contribute, do. Once each block is complete it is sent to one of the the neighboorhood women that has volunteered to do the sewing and then the magic happens. Little elves pour over the squares and find just the right background and backing fabric. The quilt is assembled, pillowcase style, and finished off with hand ties. Don't they look amazing?

However, it isn't just the uniqueness of the squares that makes me speechless when I glance into my kids' rooms and see these quilts strewn about, no doubt from some recent make believe adventure. It is the love, time, attention and care that went into making them that means the most. People stiched love, care, their thoughts and prayers for me and my family into each square. That is what makes me speechless.

I only hope that I can do the same for my babies one day, when they have babies of their own. This is a tradition worth carrying on forever.


Frogdancer said...

What a fantastic tradition. I want to come and live in your neighbourhood!

Anonymous said...

I love it. I love them. It's what quilts are all about. It ties perfectly into the historical significance of quilting bees and quilting for necessity. I agree with frogdancer about wanting to live in your neighborhood (except I spell it the American way). I guess in some small way, it's what we are all striving for in our little virtual quilting blogging world.

Alexis said...

How lovely!