Everyone's favorite domestic goddess has proven she knows her stuff once again. In the midst of her holiday cleanup and trip down memory lane, Joanna Gaines posted the perfect keepsake idea for her kids' baby clothes. Rather than throw out the entire lot or hoard boxes of baby clothes in the basement, Gaines opts to save a few important pieces for each child in a compact case with something special to go with them.
Along with being practical, sorting through baby clothes and family photos was a chance for Gaines to get nostalgic over the holidays. She posted a couple of old photos to Instagram, along with a description of her day. “I finally packed my favorite baby clothes and shoes for each kid,” she wrote. While not included in her Instagram post, a Pinterest post of her idea included in an article by Scary Mommy shows a small set of keepsakes neatly stored in what looks like travel toiletries bags.
This method wouldn't work for those parents who wish to hang out on an entire year worth of adorable tiny outfits, but it would be perfect for keeping a crisoning gown, the dress hand-knitted by grandma, or another special outfit that comes with memories attached.
Along with the outfits, Gaines shared that she also includes a message to each child in the pack, "in case they are sentimental like their mama.” Her children will probably appreciate getting a peek at their teeny, tiny clothes, but the letter from mom will certainly hit home.
Gaines is no stranger to family memories. She and husband Chip have four children together — 11-year-old Drake, 9-year-old Ella Rose, 8-year-old Duke, and 7-year-old Emmie Kay. The children live surprisingly private lives considering their parents public image. Chip and Joanna have made a point of keeping their little ones out of the limelight and it appears to be working.
Joanna spoke with People about how she and her husband are raising their family and how the show fits into family life. "They're so young and we want to give them the chance to have a normal childhood," she said. Although they aren't regularly featured on the show, the children are never far from set. In order to stay near their littles, the couple never films more than 40 miles away from their hometown of Waco, Texas, according to Country Living.
Finding a balance between a private family life and a borderline cult-like following (no judgement here, guys. I love Magnolia Market as much as the next millennial) has to be difficult. However, their effort seems to be paying off. Joanna told People that she and Chip are strict parents and their kids prefer "the simple things" because of it.
The four kids are still far too young to appreciate something like baby clothes keepsakes, but there will come a time when they are glad to have the memories. In fact, nostalgia serves an important mental health purpose, according to Scientific American. Researchers in several different studies found that nostalgia "boosted self-continuity by increasing a sense of social connectedness." The sort of sentimental recollections associated with feelings of nostalgia tend to involve memories of loved ones, which can remind people of the social web that connects them to people and fights off feelings of isolation.
Gaines was probably not thinking so technically when she put together her little memory kits, but her kids could reap the benefits nonetheless. If little packs of clothes don't tickle your DIY fancy, there are a number of creative options for hanging on to those adorable baby clothes — such as memory quilts and baby clothes memory bears. No matter how you choose to reminisce, you and your family will enjoy the memories for years to come.
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