Really, it just looked like a big, odd-shaped blanket. Hmmm...blanket. We could use more blankets. But would the material wash? Bedding around here really needs to be able to survive the washing machine. Figuring it couldn't hurt to try, into the wash it went. And it came out beautifully.
So, I measured and discovered I could get two throw sized blankets out of it. These are a particularly useful size because we often add throws on top of beds for really cold days. Plus, people can curl up in them to read books or watch a movie.
But, they were kind of dull. Useful, but dull. So I thought I would bind the edges. I really didn't have to because fleece doesn't ravel, but I thought it would look nice. I looked in my fabric stash and discovered two pieces of fabric I had found at the thrift store and turned them into yards and yards of binding.
And then I edged the blankets in them. I like how they turned out. I really, really like how they turned out. The fabric binding brightens up how they look and the prints make me happy when I look at them. Lots of other people really liked them, too, and there was much clamoring for a chance to curl up in one. Even though it was around 70 degrees. I'm pretty sure they will be well used.
Ironing yards of fabric to turn into binding and then sewing loooong straight seams isn't terribly complicated and it gave me some time to think. Would it be far-fetched to say that these blankets can represent all that I really love about homemaking?
First, I love being able to provide the things we need for our home. And we did need blankets. With three more people in beds this winter than last, our bedding was running a little low. These blankets fill a much needed hole. Next, I was able to fill that need with the best use of our resources. The fabric was passed on to us and I was able to use it in the way that made the most sense. Since the binding fabric came from the thrift store, I possibly spent a total of 50 cents on the whole project.
Third, at its core, I believe that homemaking is a creative endeavor. I loved finding fabrics that would work, figuring out how best to carry out my plan, and then actually making them. God is a God of creativity and I believe that one of the ways we are created in His image is that we are also creative beings.
And isn't there just something about an appealing, warm blanket that says home and safety to you? Being wrapped up in a blanket is comforting. Think of all the images you've seen of a person wrapped in a blanket. That blanket is a tangible object of someone else's love and care... a mother tucking in a child, a firefighter offering a blanket to a victim of a fire, a rescue worker caring for someone who had been lost. They are a powerful symbol. One that we look at and immediately associate with warmth and care.
I love that I have the opportunities to create these types of memories for my family. There are very few memories associated with these blankets right now, but I hope that someday, when my children are grown, the sight of them will trigger a series of memories... of being tucked in and cared for, of quiet moments reading while embraced of its warmth, of fun times together watching a movie together. So not only was I creating something useful, I was creating a tangible object by which my family can remember my love for them.
Continuing to advocate for the children in Bulgaria. Their files were sent back which means that they cannot be advocated for on Reese's Rainbow or have any funds donated towards their adoptions. It means they are essentially invisible and unwanted. It tells the government and the agencies that yes, indeed, their initial assumptions were correct. No one wants a child like these. They are not worth it.
But they are! They are created by God in His image and we are called to care for them. They are truly the least of these. I cannot let them go; I think about them in nearly every free moment that I have. I'm going to post one of their pictures here at the bottom of each of my posts each day. Would you join me in praying for each of these children? Pray that a family would come forward who is willing to adopt them. Love them. Pray that they will know they are not forgotten? There is still hope for these little ones as their files can be specially asked for, it just adds time to the process.
This is Chad. He is 9 years old and has always lived in an institution. An institution with severe neglect. No one has ever even asked to look at his file and now it looks as though they never will. Pray that God will not let this little one become invisible. Pray that his parents will find him and show him what it means to be loved.