Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A tiny gown, 33 years old

If I told you I was holding onto something made of yarn you’d probably shrug your shoulders and say, “What’s the big deal?” And then if I told you that the yarn was white and was 33 years old you’d probably think I should sign myself up for the show Hoarders. I mean, if I am holding onto some old ball of yarn that is over three decades old, I must have something wrong with me, right?


This is the heirloom. A baptismal gown crotched by my Great Aunt Lorraine.


She made it in 1976 before my sister Kate was born. Just a few weeks old, my sister was the first to wear the gown when she was baptized. bap3

Three years later a tiny baby with a big head of red hair wore the same gown for the same purpose.


After the baptisms were complete my mom carefully wrapped the beautiful gown in special paper and placed in the cedar chest. Like a woman's wedding gown, she had high hopes for the future of this dress. As carefully as she tended to the details in making sure the gown stayed crisp, clean, and as white as snow, she hoped one day her granddaughters would wear the same gown on the day they were baptized.

Twenty eight years later, the gown was taken out of the chest, unwrapped, and in its like-new condition, was worn yet again. I was lucky enough to baptize Mallory in the same gown I wore so many years before.

malbap malbap2

When the ceremony was done and the pictures were taken, I carefully wrapped up the gown in the same blue tissue paper to preserve the color. I then packed it away carefully, only to wonder if another little baby would be lucky enough to wear the same little dress in a few years…

Sunday we will have Mikayla baptized.


The gown is hanging in her closest waiting to be worn for a baptism, for the fourth time in its 33 year history. The blessings it bestows are grand and the memories that envelope it are even bigger. When her ceremony is complete and the Priest has blessed our final little baby, I will take the gown and carefully pack it away again. This time, it will sit for far longer, most likely a few decades. Then, when the timing is right, and one of my daughters has a baby of her own, I will take the dress and pass it down to her, hoping she can continue the blessings and traditions of a ball of yarn that was crotched into a beautiful, tiny, gown.


Amy said...

That is so sweet and special. Linnea got to wear the one my brothers and I wore. I think my mom made it. I should know this but I'm not sure. My nephew tried but he was too big. I sure hope it gets worn again by one of ours or a niece or nephew! Happy baptism Mikayla! Enjoy your special day!

Lexie said...

Sniffle Sniffle! You always know how to get me all emotional!!! Actually I laughed pretty hard when I saw the picture of trish and gar-dog!!! Happy Baptism Mikayla!