also known as: Mom or Tami
I've written a little bit about Nana's many gifts, but it doesn't truly do her justice. As anyone who knows her knows, this woman is amazing! She raised five kiddos of her own, who all turned out pretty darn good (if I do say so myself).
I often refer to her as, "The Baby Whisperer." She is a walking encyclopedia of all things maternal. I noticed it first when I was in high school and my soccer coach was having some complications with pregnancy. Even though they weren't friends, my mom and her talked for a long time. I didn't know what, in particular, they talked about, but I knew afterwards, my coach was much more at ease and comfortable. I then noticed how often pregnant women talked to my mom-- people we didn't even know seemed to strike up conversations with Mom in the grocery store and eventually get around to telling her about their pregnancy, and no matter what the worry, by the end of the conversation, the pregnant woman walked away feeling a little lighter. (Which, for those of us who have been or are pregnant know, is no small feat.) When I was pregnant, I called Mom endlessly.
Did you have Braxton-Hicks?
Why do I want to eat a hot dog for the first time in ten years?
I had the weirdest dream last night...
She always knew what to say. And she still does.
Wondering what to do with a colicky baby? Ask Nana. Helpful tips on breastfeeding? You got it, Nana. Sleeping? Eating? Yes, folks, even pooping... Nana either has an answer or will sympathize with you until you feel better. And, there is surely nothing more important to a new mom than feeling like you are doing a good job raising that precious baby. That's exactly how Mom makes you feel.
Not only is she The Baby Whisperer, but she also makes beautiful quilts. (I'm working on getting some pictures uploaded to show you!) Again, this woman is talented! Her fabric choices are always just right. Her patterns are perfect. And, the hand quilting, always complements the piecing to a "t." Words don't do her quilts justice.
The best part about her quilts though is the weight that they have. Not the physical weight, but emotional weight. Each quilt has a history and a meaning that goes deeper than its layers. It may be part of a family tradition- such as the family quilts she makes for each of us when we get married. Or, it brings with it a promise of new beginnings and new traditions such as the storybook quilts she makes for each family upon the arrival of a new baby. Some of the quilts evoke memories of spending hours in various quilt stores picking out the perfect fabric with her. For other quilts, the meaning is straightforward, such as the Family Tree quilt she made for my grandma. Each of the leaves on the quilted family tree is a handprint of a child or grandchild (or now, great-great grandchild). Nana's quilts are family heirlooms that will be passed along for generations to come. And, as they are passed, so too will stories of the wonderful woman who made them with sew much love.