You may not struggle with buying presents, but I do. My mind goes completely blank, and I often turn to the traditional Chinese gift – an angpow or little red envelope filled with money. It’s an ultra practical gift, but are there special gifts for grandbabies?
But what if it’s a new grandbaby?
Some background … I am privileged to know some wonderful women – they don’t strut the world’s stage, head multinational corporations, nor are they rich and glamorous (well maybe one or two). Instead my friends are women who have looked after their own grandmothers, or are caring for their 7 grandchildren, or women with fearsome intellects who also knit, sew, cook and clean. One of them is Pat, Emeritus Professor at Griffith University, who knits a teddybear gift for each of her grandbabies. Take a bow, you multi-tasking ladies!
Getting to know you …
Little Felix at 4 months is just getting to know “Dumpling” a crotchet bear, made with love before he was born. He isn’t quite sure whether Dumpling is friend or foe.
Like me, you might be so excited about grand baby’s birth, and need to channel that excitement somewhere. In my case, we didn’t know whether the baby would be a girl or boy, so I made Dumpling in gender neutral colours. Dumpling can be thrown in the washing machine because he’s made with acrylic fibre and hypoallergenic stuffing. I used a pattern from the internet – downloaded free.
Pat tells me that her grown up grandchildren still treasure their teddy bears so I’m hoping Felix will do the same.
“Hmm, your hand looks different to mine”. Felix with Dumpling and a much loved hand-me-down bouncinette from cousins Jonny and Rose
“Anyhow, let’s just have a nibble of your hand”
What other homemade presents can you think of?
There’s lots more. You may have made shawls, which come in handy especially in the early months, or bibs made with cross stitch, quilts, pyjamas…
Wee Felix in shawl made by Aunty Megan.
Note the hearts design!
What if you are not arty-crafty?
I’m not especially arty-crafty, and hadn’t done any crotchet for 20 years. You’ll come up with something special that comes from your heart and that’s the most important thing.
Any other special presents?
Hand-me-down presents from cousins and friends are very special. These bring with them such a warmth of feeling. It may be my over-active imagination, but the memory of other happy childhoods are imprinted on these gifts and send lovely vibes to the young ones. Felix has clothes, books and toys that his older cousins have grown out of, and these mean his parents were well supplied. His cousins take special pride that their items are now in good use and that builds good relationships.
Little Felix sleeps in “Miffy” sheets that his mother used, and maybe they can be passed down yet another generation!
Hello! Looking happy in preloved sleeping bag and bassinet sheets
What about far-away grandbabies?
We are often continents apart from grandbabies, and not all grandmas have the time to make gifts, so cash presents often work best. Felix received money and lots of snazzy clothes from loving grandparents, friends and relatives. Money towards “big ticket” items like prams, cots, car seats is practical and much appreciated, I’m reliably informed. Back to that red envelope!
If you have suggestions for special gifts, please let me know!
Sweet dreams grandbaby,