Tuesday, January 23, 2018

I Want to Challenge You to Knit Something Itty-Bitty

My youngest son turned twelve last week. When he was in the NICU, one of my online knitting friends sent us this tiny sweater. It came with instructions to alter it for a teddy bear after it was outgrown, but there was no way I was going to change anything about this perfect little knit. 

It fit him for about thirty-seven seconds after he came home from the hospital and has been hanging on my sewing room wall ever since as a reminder of my thoughtful friend. I don't look back fondly on our NICU days, but this little sweater always makes me smile.

Babies grow fast. That's what we're all told. Make something they'll be able to wear as a toddler. Something that will fit them for years to come. Everyone else is going to give the parents to be tiny little things, so you shouldn't.

Every time I hear that advice, it bugs me. My daughter was full term and the not-so-little outfit her paternal grandmother sewed for her was miles to big. By the time it would have fit her, it would have been a completely inappropriate choice. Not all babies grow out of newborn sizes in the blink of an eye. And even if they do, what's wrong with having something like this little sweater that fit for an instant but can be cherished for years to come?

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Sunday Stitching

I've been spending lots of stitching time sorting through my floss for whichever shade I need. This project has a manageable number of colors, but there are lots of similar blues and browns and pinks. Hopefully winding them all onto bobbins and putting them in numerical order will help with that. 

My progress came in fits and starts last week. I was busy with the quilt and the shawl, then I spent two days stitching as much as I possibly could, then there was some not-huge-in-the-grand-scheme-of-things stress that left me with a nasty tension headache that wouldn't go away. 

My hope was to finish this quarter of the chart by the end of January. Whether I get in every last stitch or not, I'm close enough to be happy with my progress.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

{Estate Sale Temptations} Old Stuff in a New House

There was a sign for an estate sale and I had a few minutes more than I needed to get where I was going. The house was really new. My guess is that it was built in the 1980s at the absolute earliest, which didn't bode well. As far as estate sales go, it was absolutely minimalist. But they had all the tattered old quilts...which I somehow didn't get pictures of.

 I love this vintage piece of crewel. 

And I think I have the same kit up in my sewing room, or one that's very similar, including the bright blue background. Now I want to go dig around to see if I can find it.

Stamped cross-stitch piggies...

And a cross-stitched Last Supper. I was intrigued, but not tempted to bring it home and hang it on my wall.

This one is gonna haunt me. I've been on the lookout for one of these, but on that day I didn't have the time or the room in the back of the van. Or the teenager to load it for me. There will be another one, though, if we're patient.

With so many quilts and pieces of stitchery, there were almost no left over supplies. One partially finished Oregon Beavers needlepoint project, a couple of books, and a tiny box of nondescript fabric scraps. I'm guessing that whoever lived in the house wasn't the person who did the stitchery. 

Friday, January 19, 2018

Let's Make Baby Quilts! {1/19/28}

If I hadn't spent time in the NICU with my two youngest sons, I never would have imagined how much those little quilts and handknit hats could lift my spirits. So often, we make and donate quilts and knits and don't know what becomes of them. So I asked some members of an online parenting group if they had memories that I could share with you.

Angel Coleman, who blogs over at Purely Unorthodox, was kind enough to share her experiences with us.

Has your life ever had such a surprising turn of events that you weren't prepared for? Most people have. A few life events for myself, that was both a blessing and terrifying was when two of my children, my son, and daughter were born at 31 weeks of pregnancy. I had vaginal bleeding, placenta previa with both of them and I ended up delivering both via C-sections.

Salina was my first preemie. She was only 3lbs and 3 oz. Even still my little preemie was strong and had a hospital stay of 3 weeks.
With Cayden, he was born at 3lbs 13oz and did well almost directly after birth. My little fighter as his name suggests, had a 2-week stay.

I had them both at University Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital, and I was blessed to have them there as the care was amazing and the set up of the hospital was baby friendly as well as family friendly. Well if you don't know preemie clothes are hard to come by. Salina was born in the spring so it wasn't cold anymore, but Cayden was born in November. Having a preemie baby can be hard as you are often unprepared. My babies were two months early and I hadn't even had my baby shower yet. I had friends and family, pitch in with clothes, and honestly, it all meant so much to me. One of the things that really warmed my heart was the little-knitted hats, that was were given to them.

I remember when I was in the hospital with Salina a friend and someone walked into our hospital room with a basket of clothes. They were knitted hats and booties! They told us we could take what we needed and that they were hand knitted items for our babies. They were so cute! I took a bright pink and white hat, with a pom pom and a pair of booties.

With Cayden, I remember walking into his hospital room one day and he had on a little hat. I asked the nurse where they had gotten it from. They told me about a program that made little hats for the babies in the NICU. I remembered the hat Salina had gotten, and I smiled. His hat was so cute! He had a tiny little head and they had a tiny hat for him. I went back to the family room and got a few more. They try to keep preemie babies very warm, and it was so cool to see a cute little warm hat on him, and it helps them stabilize their body temperature, which is an important factor, in preemie babies.

It's so awesome to think, that somewhere in Ohio, someone sat down and took the time to knit a hat for the little ones in that hospital. Several that my own children got to wear. I pray that God blesses that little deed, as it meant a lot to me and my children.

I have one hat that I kept, and it was Cayden's. I was going to donate it but thinking about this story, I will keep it to show, him, how tiny and little he was, and how it helped keep him warm, so he could eventually go home! It really is the little things that can help someone. Thank you for the little things.

Check out Cayden's and Salina's Preemie story!
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Let's Make Baby Quilts Linky Party Rules: 
Link directly to your post or specific Flickr photo. Your post can be about a baby quilt that's finished, or in progress, or you can be writing about what you have planned,  as long as it's about baby quilts. You're welcome to link to baby quilt posts that aren't brand new, but please don't submit the same post or picture more than once. I'd love it if you linked back to my site, either with a text link or the Let's Make Baby Quilts! button.


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