23 August 2011

Sewing and knitting for the babies

I don't remember doing any knitting for my own babies. I didn't sew for them either. My mum knitted beautiful booties and jackets for them, and I remember when I lived in Germany, just after Shane was born, mum used to send a couple of letters per week, and in each of them was a pair of booties. It seems like such a sweet and quiet thing to do and I doubt I appreciated it as much as I should have when she sent them, but I love the memory of it very much. My sons were both born in July, just 12 months apart. It was very busy in those early years. I started sewing for Shane and Kerry when I had more time. I guess they were around 5 and 6 by then and I made shorts, tops and marble bags; easy things like that.

So it surprises me how compelled I feel now to sew and knit for my grandchildren - Jamie and Alexander. I am enjoying the planning of each project and when I went to Spotlight yesterday and found very good quality polar fleece for $2.50 a metre, then got 20 percent of that because it was a little bit dirty on the edge, I felt like I'd won the lottery. I scooped up those fabrics and took off out of there with a smile as wide as the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

This is Jamie, he's almost six months old now. I hope to get more photos of Alexander when we visit next time.

It's tough and a little bit sad to be too far away from our family to see them regularly. We try to get there every month and there have been visits here but still, I feel like we're not really close enough to be of help if we're needed. That is no one's fault, it's just how it is, so knitting and sewing lets me feel a little bit closer to all of them. I focus on how my project will look on them, or help in their care and that makes a difference.  It's not as good as being there but it's better than not being involved at all and it makes our visits something really special. That is when we see not only how much the babies have grown but also how much their parents have grown into their new roles. I am one proud grandma and mother.

Both babies have a lot of clothes - mainly second-hand, or lovely organic garments, so there is really no need to make clothes. But all those little pieces, the wipes, fleece and wool covers, bibs and little hats, they're all mine to make. :- ) The babies will never remember how I sewed for them, and knitted little bits and pieces, but it's an important part of grandmothering for me and I'm enjoying every stitch and every needle I thread.

I'm looking for more tutorials or patterns for all the little odds and ends that make this first year of life a bit easier or more comfortable - for the babies and the parents. If you know of anything that you used, or think is really cute, or a must-have, please leave a link so I can see it. I have a large stash of fabric, organic cotton, alpaca and wool yarn and I'm all ready to go.

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