Today we remember Li'l Blankie. Li'l Blankie was born at Target and was brought into our home in 2002, just before Joy and Grace were born. She began her tenure with us as a useful servant, being used to swaddle Grace, and, later, to cover her at night to keep her warm. She soon grew into a trusted friend, faithful confidant, and ever-present companion to Grace.
Grace christened her "Li'l Blankie" during her second year. (We think she was trying to say Yellow Blankie, even though Li'l Blankie was pink!) But the name stuck, and she remained Li'l Blankie all her life. In addition to sleeping with Grace, Li'l Blankie went practically everywhere with her: friends' houses, church, stores, doctors' offices, dance class. Grace loved Li'l Blankie even when her pink color turned dingy and she developed larger and larger holes. In fact, I think those things may have made Grace love her even more.
Li'l Blankie accompanied us to Family Camp this year. Sadly, during play time with her friends, Grace set Li'l Blankie down and forgot to pick her back up. By the time Paul and I realized she was missing, it was too late. We prayed, searched the camp, asked the staff, announced our loss to our fellow Family Campers, and prayed some more to no avail. Li'l Blankie was gone! We believe someone unacquainted with the ways of young children threw her away, believing her to be a rag, rather than a beloved friend.
Li'l Blankie is survived by her beloved Grace, by her sister blankies, Grace's Yellow Blankie, and Joy's Yellow Blankie, and an assortment of cousin blankies.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests all parents to carefully guard their children's comfort items, lest they befall the same fate.
Of course, Grace mourned for her lost friend. I think we all did. Her sisters rose to the occasion, offering to let Grace have their blankies either temporarily or, in one case, permanently. Grace was consoled by the addition of a new blankie purchased from Gymboree on our way home from Family Camp. In fact, Grace hasn't cried about Li'l Blankie once since she got her new blankie, which she has named Squirrelly because of the squirrels printed on her. God has graciously allowed Squirrelly to take Li'l Blankie's place in Grace's affections.