Sunday, December 9, 2012

Going through the Baby Boxes

Being a mother of four children, two of whom are grown, and one who is well on her way, I can honestly say that that the kids really do grow up so fast!  It seems like yesterday that my two boys were running around the house in their Underoos, asking for the latest video game to go on their Christmas list.  Now they are grown and out of the house, and both have told me, "I don't want anything for Christmas this year, Mom," when I asked them what they wanted. WHAT?!  lol

Of course, I'll be shopping for them both, but times sure do change right before your eyes, and truthfully even before you know it's happening. 

For each of the four children, I have a baby box.  It's nothing fancy, a big plastic bin that has items from their childhood I thought were important enough to keep. There are report cards, year books, trophies, ribbons, programs from school events, sports shirts, pictures they've drawn, letters they have written, and the like.

The oldest three all have a hand-knit child-sized afghan in their baby box that my grandmother made for them (just like the one she made for me that I still have).  Sadly for us, she was no longer with us when the youngest was born.

My grandmother made blankets for my children that are cherished memories for us now.

Just a sampling of what's in the boxes... my oldest was active for many years in martial arts (he still is, in fact). He also was a regular participant in sports (almost undefeated seasons in wrestling, and he played for his high school football team too).  So, I have newspaper articles about those things that have his name listed, in his baby box.  I also have his very first football trophy out for this picture (we're talking waaaaaaaaaay back, when he was in grade school still).  His favorite book from his childhood is in there, as are the blanket he came home from the hospital in, and a piece from his baby crib set that I painstakingly sewed and quilted by hand (I was very young, and we didn't have a sewing machine, the sheet is in the picture, but I went the whole nine yards and did a complete set).

Sampling from the oldest child's baby box.
He was always so gentle with his little sis.  

My second oldest played the violin for a few years, so his very first learning CD is in the box.  The baby blanket the hospital gave him, and that we brought him home in, is in there too.  He started ball playing early, and his first T-Ball trophy is in this picture.  His favorite book ("If You Give a Mouse a Cookie,") a scrapbook of his entire childhood, and his graduation cap are also included.  He's also got a few coins in there from his great-grandfather that are dated and put in cardboard (from the country his grandfather grew up in).

Sampling from the box of the second oldest child.

All geared up to help bring his newborn sister home from the hospital

My daughter had a prayer book (the button still works that recites the main verse) that she loved for years, and that's in her box.  She was/is also very active with all things dance, so she has moments from that in her box too. She has her Shutterfly memory books from each year...and her "One Fish, Two Fish," book which she could recite by heart even before she could read.  And she has three scrapbooks in there filled with things from her childhood.  My favorite thing, which isn't in this particular picture, is the outfit she came home from the hospital in...the little ruffles on the rear end of the bottoms that matched the dress still make me laugh.  She was such a beautiful baby!

Mommy and Me drawing.  :)

The youngest doesn't have a big box yet (he's only 5-yrs.-old) but he's on his way.  In his box we have the hat, outfit, and blanket we brought him home from the hospital in, his first Christmas Santa Suit, and his favorite crib toy.

From our youngest child's baby box.
Never mind the mismatched wood, that's driving me bonkers, but is totally temporary.  Hubby just purchased a trio of homemade wooden tables that we have to stain, and while I love them, I will love them even more when they are the right color!  Our other tables though, have been moved to the family room, and it was in the library where I had the boxes all unpacked, so it is in there the pictures were taken (mismatched wood and all ;) ).

I took the boxes out this weekend because we will get to see my oldest and his wife over the holidays (they are out of state, so that is always a treat!), and he's about to have his own his box will go to him.  It will be bittersweet to hand it over.  He's at that age now where he's getting nostalgic a bit, and has started asking for things from his childhood.  I love that...but it also means he's not a baby anymore (something I've known for awhile, but you know how it goes when they're your own).

It was extremely enjoyable to go through the baby boxes (of course once I got into one, I had to go through them all).  The treasures in those boxes wouldn't mean a thing to anyone outside of the family, but to those of us in the family, they mean the world.

So now I'm finished going through the baby boxes that belong to my children, and I am curious:  What kinds of ways do you document the precious memories from your children's youth?  I'd love to hear about it!


  1. I absolutely love this post! I go through my mom's baby boxes she has for me whenever I think about it. I can't wait to show Reagan the things my mom kept!
    She has all our stuff in a hope chest.
    So fun!!

    Thank you for linking to Raising Imperfection. Please come back Friday to see if you were featured :)


  2. you are way more organized than I am..I have everything thrown together in one box! But, like you, it is so fun to go throughout that box. sometimes I wonder how we even did it!

  3. Like Annmarie, I've everything thrown together in several boxes! It's fun to go through them every once in a while!

    Happy Monday!

  4. Every week, I am doing cleaning at home and just like what you do, I organize things in many boxes.
    I make sure things are properly in order.

  5. Aww, I adore this post. Violet is only 9 months old but I know I will do something like this for sure. I have a shadow box that I have been working on for her hospital hat and things like that.

    Thank you for linking up to Raising Imperfection!
    We love having you link up each week.

  6. A baby box is such a great idea! I'll have to keep this in mind for when I have children someday :) I bet it is bittersweet to look over the items now that they are grown. But so nice that you have treasures to look back on and remember the times gone by.

  7. I really love this! As a first time mom it's good to be reminded to hang on to some special things to keep for the day when she grows up!

  8. I kept everything in a trunk in the basement - are you ready for this? Until we had a flood and everything inside of it was destroyed - I could just weep looking at all your precious memories - especially the drawings for me - ( I even kept their little foot prints from the hospital in that trunk - clothes - now you've done it Rosey - I'll be in a guilty funk all week :(
    Beautiful post though - and beautiful photos!!!
    And my advice to fellow followers?
    Sad Suzy

    1. Oh my gosh, my mother-in-law lost so many things in her basement too. It really was sad!!! But I don't want you to feel bad coming over here to visit!!

  9. Awww, I've got tears in my eyes as I read. They do grow up so quickly! It seems like just the other day mys on was begging me to play army men with him and now he has a little one of his own! I have a few boxes of items from their childhood as well but nothing as organized as yours! I have such a hard time throwing out their papers and drawings, I need to go through the boxes of them again and sort them out ruthlessly! I have two boxes with their baby things too. Such sweet little memories!

  10. Awwww sweet post. One of my plastic bins is pushed under Christopher's bed and it has a lot of firsts outfits and those that were too adorable to give away. I love looking through there also. His papers of this and that are in a file cabinet and then we have one of those pre-school through 12th grade books that we fill in and it has pockets for things. I was pretty good about doing an annual photo book but last year I didn't do it. So this year I will do a 2011/2012 book. That is A LOT of pictures to go through. In some ways the 35mm days were easier.

  11. Love those memories...I miss those times mine are 13 now

  12. I have boxes too! I am worried I'll have too much in them:) I guess I shouldn't be huh! ;)

    These are such beautiful memories and it helps us to enjoy them over and over again too.

    Gosh I miss the baby stages too.
    Hope I'll be able to have more.

    You are such an awesome mommy!!!

  13. Rosie,
    I have a box for each of my kids too. And sort of scrapbooks, though they are hit or miss. :)

    Each year, we get the kids an ornament from our family vacation (lots of Disney ornaments on my tree) and I know the time is coming when I'll hand that box over to kid one -- whew. Not sure I'm ready.

    Great post.

  14. I love this post Rosey! My mom always kept baby boxes for us. She still has ours though. I have started some for my children too. It's always so fun to go back down memory lane, reliving moments in time when those items meant a great deal to us. I think saving those items are just as important as family photos. They all bring such great memories!

  15. Awww... little memory boxes. How sweet. I wish I would have thought of this when my Daughter was young.

  16. I too have baby boxes for my four blessings. I love going through them and seeing all those precious pictures of their lives!

  17. Going through baby boxes makes me cry every time!

  18. What a beautiful idea to store these things. I'm sure your children enjoy going through the box from time to time... I should do the same.

  19. This is such a lovely idea - I'm sure your kids will appreciate it now they are grown. My son is only 15mths but we've already started a little box with some of the more precious keepsakes. I'm looking forward to adding to it over the years :)

  20. Oh Rosey this is such a precious idea! I am so going to do this for my wee ones!

  21. You clearly picked things that were extremely relevant because you remember the details of each! This is wonderful!

  22. I have mementos tucked all over the house. Hidden in drawers and stuffed in the back of closets. I love your boxes. I need to get some for my two and get all their stuff together.

  23. It is so wonderful that you have these boxes with things from all your children. So cool! A lot of special memories. Very interesting post mail4rosey!

  24. This reminds me that I should get a box. My paper bag full of memories is not going to last much longer! I do love the idea of passing along a bit of history and nostalgia to the next generation.

  25. What an amazing collection of treasures you have!! I save EVERYTHING of my kids. I have a big box with all their report cards, school projects, etc. Plus cards they've received, the candles they got from their baptisms and just about everything else they've ever gotten. My most prized possession is my oldest son's "sheepy" doll that he carried around with him everywhere. That thing actually smells like a real sheep these days, but it's something that I will always cherish.

  26. This is such a great post Rosey! I love how you kept a box for each of your kids with special items from their childhood :) Reminds me of what my mom did for my sister and I and what I plan on doing for Sofia :) I bet it was very nostalgic going through them and remembering your kids as babies. Those afghans--how precious. Thanks for sharing this! Hope you have a wonderful weekend mama! xo

  27. You know, I was just in my basement cleaning and I found a box of the kids crafts they did and gave us. I am going to give it back to them so they can remember what they did.

  28. I needed to read this. I'm a hoarder when it comes to my children. I save everything. I thought by saving these items that I would pass my bad habit but I now feel reassured that I'm doing the right thing :)


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