Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Susan mentioned my love for making quilts on her blog. So today I'll tell you the story of why I love Quilt making.
I was 10 months old when Pearl Harbor was bombed and the United States entered World War II. While there was no fighting or bombing in the US where we lived, I knew that other places were being bombed because some of my first memories are of blackouts. When the sirens sounded we practiced closing all curtains and turning off all lights so that if an airplane with a bomb was flying over they couldn't see where the towns and cities were. They didn't have all the radar and equipment to find targets that we have now. When I was about 18 months old my brother, Bill, was baby sitting my sister and me while our parents made a quick run to the grocery store. While they were gone the lights went out and the sirens sounded. Since the lights went out without us turning them off and the sirens were blaring Bill was sure that an airplane with bombs really was coming. So he opened the blanket compartment under the sofa bed and had Naty and me crawl into the foot high storage place so that if a bomb fell the sofa would protect us.
As we were crawling into the sofa Mom and Dad came home and said everything was all right--the power plant had caught fire and the electricity was off and the sirens were calling the fire department. By the time the war was over when I was 4 and a half I had seen many newspaper pictures and newsreels of the devastation caused by the bombing in Europe.
After the war Ezra Taft Benson toured Europe and documented the terrible condition of the Latter Day Saints and the rest of the people. The Church sent out letters to the wards and branches asking for donations of food, clothing and blankets for the people in Germany especially. Our small branch of the church decided to make baby layettes to send. I remember playing at the little old building behind the City Cafe where we met for church while the ladies in Relief Society crocheted around receiving blankets and tied quilts and made nighties for the babies. Each layette had 2 quilts, two receiving blankets, two nighties, two saques (shorter nighties) and 4 dozen diapers and some booties. Naty and I got to go to the 5 and 10 cent store to buy Diaper Pins and baby bottles to go with the layettes.
And so the layettes were finished and sent to Salt Lake so they could be taken to Germany.
And I was there when the thank you letter came from somewhere in Germany telling us about how happy the people were to have them. They had made each layette do for 4 babies. They wrote, "you have made our babies so pretty and so warm. We were wrapping them in old newspapers and rags or anything we could find. Thank you so much."
I have never forgotten that letter and cannot even think about babies being wrapped in anything but nice warm baby quilts and that is why I love to make quilts.

3 comments:

Adams Family said...

I'm so glad you started blogging. I'm excited to get my ultasound so I know which color blanket to chose. Kait still loves hers at 5.

Cowboy mom said...

um Don't tell anyone but I think I got three quilts for each of my kids. shh shh...

Boy Mom said...

I have blankets for the girl baby I've never had. Fun to know where the baby blanket passion comes from.