Before you read today’s post, please take a moment to look at our Christmas Crashers post! You, our readers, are helping us make Christmas magical for 30 families!
Two weeks ago, my husband loaded four large trash bags into the back of our Jeep. The bags don’t contain trash or recycleables. They weren’t headed for a landfill or even to the large bins at Goodwill that are overflowing with donations. No, these bags contained the precious fabrics that swaddled my babies for the first weeks and years of their lives.
I started with at least nine (NINE.) plastic tote boxes filled with clothes, size newborn up through the summer season 18 month clothes. At end of my work, I had filled two bags for one family with an older baby and four bags for a family expecting a baby very soon. The empty totes were then filled with clothes for the next sizes or off-season clothes for the boys. It helps me sleep at night to think of the 3 large tote boxes that are crammed full of the next size up for Miles and the drawer and box full of Miles’s current size that will be ready for Spencer when he outgrows what he is wearing now.
Let me for a moment give a heartfelt word of thanks to our friends who have blessed us with the gift of hand me down clothes through the years. I don’t know how we would do this without used clothing. We don’t have the income to spend on pricey children’s clothes and shoes, so we absolutely get by on items we get from friends whose children have outgrown their clothes. I’m always amazed (though I shouldn’t be) how we are always blessed by a bag or clothes from friends at the precise time we need them. Thank you, friends, for your generosity.
Here’s a look at what I ended up keeping for memories:
The boys’ “going home” outfits, Spencer’s on the left (a February baby) and Miles on the right (born in July)
A sweater, purchased by my mother in law as a Christmas present for Miles just a few weeks before she unexpectedly passed away in 2008.
A pair of tiny Converse sneakers, bought for Miles but worn by both boys
(If I were really awesome, I would have done a side-by-side with photos of the boys wearing these items and put that into the post…But I’m going to blame the coffee-soaked Macbook again for that one. And I’ve been too busy making some parents very happy with their $50 Christmas Crashers gift cards!)
I was surprised at how difficult it was for me to send the clothes away to their new homes. Especially as I went through the box of newborn clothes, I held up a few items and breathed in the newborn baby smell. I thought of how tiny my boys were when they wore those outfits and how much love those sleepers could hold. I couldn’t help but cry as I said goodbye to those sweet little jammies.
For the record, I’m not saying we’re done having children. I would love to have more children…in a few years. And there’s no sense in hoarding unused clothes on the off-chance that a future baby might be the same gender and need the same season/size as my boys did. And because I’m working on living in faith of God’s provision these days, I know that He will provide for our needs.
“Bye bye baby clothes” and “Hello more organized closet”!
How long do YOU plan to hold on to your baby’s clothes? What did you do with yours when you were done? Have you had the blessing of hand me downs?