Friday, December 7, 2012

Emma's Entourage: Knots of Love

I wanted to share a story that is very near to our family's heart.   It is an incredible story of courage, strength and miracles.  Billy's cousin, Julie, documented the details her daughter Emma's journey on Emma's Entourage Facebook page, but this video captures Emma's triumph so beautifully. Grab a tissue before you hit the play button...

Emma's Entourage was created by Julie as a way to give back.  The current "give back" campaign is Knots of Love...handmade blankets to bring comfort and security to NICU babies this Christmas. 

The blankets are very simple to make if you'd like to help Emma give back.  I made one blanket in under an hour just sitting on the couch watching TV.  I've outlined the details on how to make one below. 

If you have a little time this holiday season please gather your friends, church group, mom's group or even your girl scouts and make a blanket or two. To make things even easier I will come pick up the blanket(s) from you anywhere in the KC area and make sure they reach Emma by the December 19th deadline!  
Christmas is a time when miracles seem much more possible.  Knowing that this small blanket I made is going to be wrapped around a precious tiny baby in the NICU at Lurie Children's Hospital in Chicago makes my heart happy.  I hope it brings warmth and comfort.  And I hope that it might turn into a threadbare security blanket many years from now when that little baby becomes a healthy toddler at home.  I can only pray.

Here are directions for a Knots of Love blanket:

- Cut your yard of fleece in half, trimming off any imperfect edges.  Lay them on top of each other so they stretch in the same direction and have their most vividly colored side facing out.

- Cut out a four-inch square from each corner of the blankets.

- Cut both layers of fleece into a 1.5-inch wide by 4.5-inch long "fringe" along the edge, using the measuring tape to guide you. 
- Tie together half of the fringe in square knots (or just use a regular knot), skipping every other knot, as you work your way around the edge of the blanket.

- Turn over the almost finished fleece "blanket" and tie the remaining pieces of fringe together to complete the throw. Using this tying technique helps to create a more balanced look so there is not a definite front or back to the blanket.

**Note when you purchase 1 yard of fleece it is doubled over. Cut it in half so you will end up with 2 pieces of identical fleece measuring one yard each. It's cute when you use two coordinating patterns (ie. stripes front and picture back). If you purchase 1 yard of two different patterns you will be able to make 2 blankets.

Emma's Entourage will be wrapping to distinguish between boy and girl so feel to do pink princesses or a sports theme. Also, neutral is needed, too. Specific sport teams or holiday themes are not recommended but otherwise anything goes!
Billy and Emma on Thanksgiving.

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