Some of my most precious gifts are the cheapest.
These gifts are special not because of what they do but because of the love and memories associated with it. A day before my wedding my mom gave me 25 such gifts – one for every year I’ve been her daughter. Amongst them was a quilt made of all the cards we had written each other, my first doll, and a diary of mom’s thoughts and advice to me as I became a married woman. Five years on, I still wrap myself in the quilt when I am missing her heaps and flip through her diary whenever I encounter it in the back shelf of my cupboard hoping to glean some new wisdom I can use.
I wanted to give such a gift to my newborn.
Something that he would treasure but also something that he could practically use and make memories with. A gift of love that showed him how special his arrival in the world was to me.
So, I decided I would knit him a blanket.
I hadn’t knit anything since the hairband I made in fifth grade so going from hairband to blanket was quite a big leap. I knew the basics of casting on and doing a knit stitch but that was about it. Luckily for me there was You Tube and a gazillion different videos on making your first blanket.
No one in my family (except for mum) could quite understand why I would take on such a daunting task when a blanket was quite easily available at any baby store and weren’t that expensive either. But, once I started, the clickety clack of my needles and the tangible piece of cloth appearing in front of my eyes was addictive. I skipped many a walk in favour of sitting on my arm chair to knit and ate dinners in a rush so I could get back to my needles. After all, I had to knit more than 300 rows and I had less than four months to get it done.
While I found it weird talking to my baby bump I had no such qualms talking to my blanket in progress. I shouted at it when my border wouldn’t come properly, I petted it when the colour shading I had dreamt about became a reality and I even cuddled with it before Baby M was born and I wrapped it up for him.
It may not have the greatest design or be the softest blanket I’ve come across but it’s a gift made with love.
In just the three months that Baby M has used the blanket its already helped us make great memories. From the time that we both snuggled into the blanket (it became super stretchy after its first wash) to the time that I used it when he was just born to the day that he played peek-a-boo using the blanket with me. Each occasion is made special thanks to the blanket.
If you’re pregnant and thinking of a gift your baby would treasure, I would highly recommend making something with our own two hands. Whether the gift is a knitted blanket or a cap or even a wooden toy that you’ve carved out. Because, gifts made with love will never go out of style – no matter how fancy its factory made counterparts may come to be.