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Shortly before my oldest daughter turned two, my husband and I decided that we wanted to make a gift for her birthday. We ended up building a toy kitchen for her. Despite it being a big project, we had complete joy and satisfaction when we presented it to her.
As her third birthday approached, we decided that since her love of Mr. Dressup was so great, we would make her a Mr. Dressup tickle trunk (filled with costumes and hats of course). My husband built it and I painted it. My daughter, of course, loved it!
Then my daughter’s fourth birthday approached. Her love for Mr. Dressup was still great, so I painted a picture of the Wise Old Owl
We are now less than a month away from my youngest daughter’s first birthday. We of course want to make her a homemade gift. After some planning and discussion, my husband and I decided that a Waldorf doll would be a great gift for a first birthday. However, since my husband can’t sew, this project has rested 100% on my shoulders. He’s been the design advisor but I am in charge of the creation and assembly.
As the days go by, I am getting increasingly nervous. I quickly made the body, but I am struggling to make the doll’s head.
The other day, as I was working on the doll’s head, I began to contemplate just why exactly do I feel the need to create birthday gifts for my children. Yes, homemade is nice and all but why this NEED to create. As I asked myself this question, the answer came to me just as quickly….
Making my daughters’ gifts is therapeutic for me. As the needle plunges in I remember carrying her in my womb… her kicks, her nudges, her hiccups… and as the needle comes out I think about her birth and our first few days in the hospital. As the needle plunges into the fabric again, I reminisce about milestones that have been met and as the needle comes out, I marvel about the inches my daughter has grown. As I create, I think about the laughter, the tears, the quiet moments and the loud ones. For me, it’s not just a gift, it is a time to recall memories of a year that has passed. A moment to reflect on the past and embrace the future. For me, it’s a gift from my heart, soul and mind.