In the meantime…

The guys are keeping busy repairing trucks, checking tires, fixing air conditioners, changing oil on everything in sight! It’s been pretty quiet this week, but that’s all about to change.  

In the meantime….#3 Son and DiL go to hospital tomorrow morning early for the delivery of their 4th baby! Funny thing is…this is as exciting as the first grands, even if there were 2 of them! I keep thinking that with each expected grandchild, the whole affair will become more…what’s the right word? Mundane. Normal. Common. Not sure any of those fit, nonetheless, I get pretty revved up about each new baby and we haven’t had a little one in a while. I did do a bit of looking at baby clothes the other day but decided to wait. If this is another girl, she will have no problems in the fashion department as her big sisters will have plenty of hand-me-downs! If, however, this happens to be a boy, some outfits must be sought out. Reminds me of a section in Shellie Tomlinson’sbook, “Suck Your Stomach In and Put Some Color On”…

The Hospital Homecoming is a big event in the South. When it was my turn, she brought Jessica Ann, my infant daughter, the ultimate pink traveling outfit: a Feltman Brothers ensemble to be sure-the only name in classy baby clothes. It was complete with a matching smocked bonnet, a coordinating receiving blanket, and personalized bloomers. Lesson given and received: Proper Southern Mamas spit-shine their babies to a fare-thee-well before taking them out in public. FYI: Receiving blankets are critical, regardless of the weather. One can find receiving blankets of varying weights for this reason Sure, they’re meant to ward off the little one’s chills, but they also double as a sign of affection. To see a newborn not wrapped in a receiving blanket is to witness a sad state of neglect the almost warrants a 911 call to the proper authorities.

I almost yelled out loud when I read that paragraph! Someone else had the same and very definite ideas about baby apparel! It was almost as if Shellie and I were long-lost sisters. She nailed it! Somehow, it made me feel less crazy to know that there were other moms out there who insisted on matching outfits from birth. Imagine my three daughter-in-laws’ dismay when I presented them with Feltman Brothers newborn clothing (instead of Baby Gap!), THE clothing line for fashionable babies since…a long time back! Further, they were given various receiving blankets that my mother had made for my babies. They were nice about it tho, but weren’t quite sure what I was up to! But I diplomatically explained that not only do they keep Baby warm and look nice, but they also keep everyone’s nasty hands off of Baby. Important things I’m telling you here.

You see, in my day…my babies were dressed up for their maiden voyage to their new home in nothing but Feltman Brothers. Well, that’s not exactly true..the first son had something close to Feltman…a white romper with tucks, but his receiving blanket was a cotton, baby blue blanket, made by his grandma. The second son was lucky as his mommy had discovered FB by then and he had a baby blue cotton romper with appliques and embroidery AND a white cotton blanket trimmed in blue, made by his grandma. Son #3 wore a cute FB yellow romper with a train appliqued across it. I had bought it early enough that I talked my mother into making a white cotton blanket and requested an appliqued yellow train to match. Details, people, details.

Now had they been girls, I had that totally under control…each pregnancy, I would carefully wash and iron a beautiful white dress my mother had made for me many years ago. (And then just as carefully, wrap it back up in fading tissue paper and return to my hope chest/cedar chest.) It was sewn from cotton handkerchief material, trimmed with tiny pintucks, bought lace and then embroidered. The buttonholes were hand made and tiny French seams hide on the “wrong side” of the dress.

French seams and teensy stitching for the hem…no machine stitches.

A matching slip had the same lace and embroidery on it, only the hem was scalloped.

and a slip to match

And Mother coordinated the outfit years later in anticipation of the first grandbaby (which turned out to be twins!  And boys!) with hand crocheted booties and a pink cotton blanket trimmed with handmade tatting. We weren’t quite on same level as Martha Pullen of the “Sew Beautiful” fame. But we were close. Darned close!!  

Anyway, the first granddaughter got the pink blanket and booties and I still have the dress. Actually several of them, They are amazingly intricate in design and structure. One of these days, I’m going to have them framed. Or not. That just seems almost wrong to put them behind glass. I don’t know. I’ll have to think on that one. Busy day ahead for sure. Think I’ll wash some windows and clean the kitchen…seems I have the nesting thing going on too.

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9 Responses to In the meantime…

  1. servetus says:

    Will pray for health and wellbeing and blessings.


  2. judiang says:

    My mother dressed me like a doll. After 2 boys, you can imagine she went coordinated pink crazy. Not sure if she had FB, but later she single handedly kept Buster Brown shoes in business.

    That dress is gorgeous. Hand made you say? Wow.

    BTW, what exactly is a receiving blanket?


    • The Queen says:

      I’ll bet she did! My mom made all of my clothes until about 15 years ago. She’s still sews but mainly aprons, quilts and occasional things for her great-grands.

      A receiving blanket was a less utilitarian blanket, usually lightweight like cotton and it’s main purpose besides being “pretty” was to keep baby from “being handled too much”! Did anyone else ever hear that too many folks handling a baby would make it “sore” the next day? Often a cotton receiving blanket was used to line a shawl, which was a heavier woven blanket either knitted or crocheted.

      The science of wrapping babies just right was complex obviously. When my pediatrician told me to lose the blankets, I almost fainted. Seems that he considered wrapping babies up too warmly was the cause of many minor infant maladies. What’s the first thing a granny will do when she greets a newborn? “Now you get that child covered up before he gets a chill!” I rest my case. 🙂


      • servetus says:

        I thought the point of wrapping babies up tight was to keep them from thrashing around and upsetting themselves.


      • The Queen says:

        That would be swaddling. Often swaddling is used to comfort an unhappy/ colicky baby. I had really never heard of it until we moved north. Not many people use it…that I know of. More utilitarian blankets are used for swaddling.


  3. Wow! Very pretty. I always thought I was a southerner being from the south part of my state but I must be from another planet as I have never heard of the brand. Coming from the NW must make me a real outsider. 🙂 I did make sure my two babies were dressed in matching attire and all the accessories too. Now that they are grown however they don’t quite understand Mom’s obsession with being color coordinated.


  4. The Queen says:

    And I found a new one several years ago…Strasberg brand. Oh my gosh! Carriage is another good one. Almost makes you want to get the sewing machine warmed up and whip up a couple of outfits. Almost.


  5. servetus says:

    Hope she’s okay and everything worked out all right. Pls update w/r/t prayer requests when you have a chance, okay?


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