Thursday, September 20, 2007

100 Good Wishes Quilt

To welcome and celebrate a new life, there is a tradition in the northern part of China to make a Bai Jia Bei, or "100 Good Wishes Quilt." It is a custom to invite 100 people to contribute a single square patch of cloth. The 100 patches are sewn together into a quilt that contains the luck, energy and good wishes from all the family and friends who contributed a piece of fabric. The quilt is then passed down from generation to generation.

Now that we are in the last stretch of the adoption wait, I've decided to begin the "100 Good Wishes Quilt" in hopes to finish it by the first of the New Year. We have specifically chosen over 100 families to participate in this project, friends, family members, neighbors and those we have met along the journey of our adoption. What a wonderful treasure for our daughter -- a quilt made with love and from the hearts of many special people in our lives.

This is how it works (I got these instructions from another site). Ask family and friends to do the following:


1. Choose any 100% cotton fabric that you like. It can be from a piece of old clothing or from a fabric store. It just needs to have a design and color that you like. After washing the material, cut two (2) 8" squares from the selected fabric(s).

2. On the wish card, place a small swatch of the fabric and include your "good wishes note." Please include your name and city/state and country if outside of the USA. The fabric square will be used to make a quilt, and the note (with the small bit of matching fabric) will be placed in a keepsake box/book which we will give to our daughter when she is older.


· Select a fabric that is meaningful to you or that, for some reason, causes you to think of our waiting daughter.

· 100% cotton fabric is best, as it washes and wears better.

· If there are several members in your family, please feel free to send more than one good wish note and squares of fabric. In China, these quilts were originally made from the garments of family and friends, in order to surround the child with luck, warmth and good wishes.


What would you wish for our waiting daughter to have in her life? Some ideas are good health, perseverance, compassion and a sense of humor. Use your values as a guide for your good wishes note. There are no right or wrong answers – let your personality, beliefs and values guide you! We asked you to be part of this project because we value your place in our lives! Sometimes people choose to incorporate into the wish:
· a favorite quote from a famous person;
· a cherished Scripture;
· a proverb or popular saying that resonates with them;
· or an excerpt from a song or poem that especially touches their hearts.

I have several quilts that my grandmother made, along with help from her mother, when I was younger. They are a beautiful token of her gifts and her love for her family. I hope that this "100 Good Wishes Quilt" will serve the same purpose for our daughter, Elyza.

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