I’ll never forget the way my eyes welled up with emotion when I opened her gift.
I have been married for eleven years now, yet my wedding day is as clear in my memory as if it happened only two weeks ago (my anniversary). I recall being surrounded by my new husband’s family in the most beautiful garden on a cool autumn day. I didn’t know them very well at the time as they all live out of state, but they clearly were happy about the occasion. I felt like a princess, dressed all in white, and flowers in my hair. My mother-in-law and her two sisters brought their mother up to see me, a large package in hand. They explained to me I was about to receive a very special gift, and I needed to open it in person. It could not wait until later, and of course I could not refuse my husband’s grandmother who had been nothing but sweet to me.
The three younger women were holding their breath. This was some sort of family tradition. Their own daughters would know and expect this gift, but I was an outsider. Would I understand the love and thought that was put into this gift? I could sense that even my husband knew what was coming.
So far the day had been like a dream come true. My family had made things happen I had not expected, but there was one thing they had missed, and here it was, right in front of me. For years, I had been in love with counted cross-stitched pictures of brides and had wanted one of my own. The picture was beautiful, every stitch taken perfectly, made with love. I ran my hand across the glass protection, marveling in the workmanship of every stitch. My eyes welled with tears and I looked up at the expectant elderly woman, and asked her how she could have possibly known how much I had wanted one. Apparently, she had made one for each of her grandchildren.
To this day, I consider this to be one of our most treasured wedding gifts. I know that every stitch was made with my husband and his future bride in her heart. I knew then that my new family took crafting as seriously as I do.
If you are married, have you received a special handmade wedding gift? Or, what handmade items have you given as wedding gifts? Do you think handmade gifts are better than say toasters? I’d love to hear your thoughts.