Parenting Bucket List

first daughter with her cousins
My sister in law and I had our first babies about a month apart. Eighteen years later, she is the mother of 11, while I am blessed with a scant seven. The major reason for this is that she has more faith than me. You see, I have a bucket list of things that I imagine good moms do. Read the entire Little House on The Prairie series to each child. Sew each daughter a dress. Bake sugar cookies from scratch every holiday and decorate. Commemorate every history time period with a project. The list is really quite long, and now as I get older and the possibilities of having more children diminishes, these must do projects don't seem quite so important, and I wish I had packed in a few more babies and a few less projects.

However, the projects, and what they mean to the children, are still important enough that I was delighted last week when I made steps towards accomplishing another of my "small child" parenting goals. You see, I had always wanted to sew a cloth doll like the one Laura had in Little House on the Prairie. A cloth doll with button eyes which Laura treasured as her one toy.

Then, I became even more inspired when another of my creative sister in laws made matching muslin dolls for her daughters for Christmas. After finding a book on projects for children at the library, my second daughter and I cut out fabric and stitched together the body, legs and arms. The doll then got stuck in a drawer for months as we went through a home remodel. Finally we had a sewing day to help a friend sew a blanket for her expectant child and I took the opportunity to finish the doll. I had a picture from a recent Martha Stewart Living Magazine of folk artist, Jess Brown and her lovely dolls. Mine did not turn out quite like hers but nevertheless, Ella and I are delighted!


  1. awwww.... do you remember the cloth doll I made for Amanda?... I had a great book, but it's disappeared.

  2. You are such a faithful woman Jennifer and God wants us to follow the path he sets for us, not for someone else. Your doll and your precious Ella are gorgeous!