nesting and giving and what a dollar can buy

There’s a fine line between “nesting” and insanity. As I found myself pinning 1.5×2 inch rectangles of fabric to a piece of rick rack for the third time last night (because the first two times weren’t quite right) I realized I had crossed it. I originally thought this nesting compulsion was the domain of physically pregnant moms. Not so.

A few weeks ago I gave a donation to one of my favorite groups, Shona C*ngo. I gave it because one of the ladies in the group is pregnant and I wanted to help with her medical expenses. A few days later the stateside rep wrote me an email telling me what the money would be used for, and I can’t get it out of my mind. You see we didn’t really give much in the grand scheme of things, and the amount isn’t important, the point is she told me how far the money would go. How long it would provide for this sweet mom’s time in the hospital. It blew me away. That so little could go so far.

We’ve given that same amount and more multiple times in the last months, but it’s usually to a larger organization and while I know the money was well spent I also don’t know quite what happened to it. There’s nothing wrong with that of course but this time it was so personal. So intimate. This time I knew exactly what the money was doing. And it’s shaken me. I think sometimes we don’t see how much of a difference we can make, but really it’s huge. It’s huge because it’s someone’s life we’re touching. And not because we’re amazing or wonderful or fancy ourselves the next Mother Theresa but because we happened to have the dumb luck of being born in a country where nesting can mean sewing tiny pieces of fabric  to a piece of white rick rack and not trying to find a hospital that will be safe to deliver our baby in while we live in a refugee camp.

(For the record I’m going to repin those rectangles for the fourth time soon because the blue one happens to line up with the blue of the whale in front of it. Totally unacceptable.)

I’m sitting in K’s room as I type this. Sitting in the rocker my husband bought off of Cr*igslist for me because buying things from strangers stresses me out too much. In one of those happy happenstances the yellow matches the yellow accents in this room perfectly. And I mean perfectly. It makes me smile. I love beauty, I love that I look around this little nursery and I see love in every corner. I see the quilt my mom sewed, the hat she crocheted that looks like the flag of K’s birthcountry, the crib my husband set up and the decoration he held up to the wall while I said “up, no down, now over, now up”. My phone is sitting on the table (that still needs to have the wobble in it fixed because it’s a garage sale special) next to me and it’s been buzzing at me the whole time I’ve been typing. I know it’s my siblings and parents and friends writing back about the good news I texted to them this morning. Love. I feel it all around me.

And it’s love that should compel me to keep giving, to keep helping, to keep loving. Love is something we all have extra of. There’s a never-ending supply of it in the universe. You can’t give it away fast enough.

And now I’m off to buy a new diaper bag from Shona C*ngo, and I’m going to think of that other mother whose nesting looks far, far different from mine but which I know shares one powerful force: love for our babies.

If the above links don’t work for you, you can find out more about Shona C*ngo here:!/pages/Shona-Congo/112885348272 and here: and buy their beautiful handiwork here: Please “like” them on Facebo*k and get the word out about their products.


{{On the right is a beautiful piece I bought from the ladies of Shona C*ngo and which hangs in K’s nursery. On the left those tiny pieces of fabric I’ve been working on, also for K’s nursery.}}

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