My Grandma, Philomena Vandecar, was among the oldest of 13 children. She learned midwifery from her mom and helped birth many babies in the St. Lawrence Seaway valley of northern New York State. She “wrapped ‘em up in a tablecloth” (the cleanest finest cloth in the house) to keep them warm, and cared for the rest of the family while the mother recovered.
I was the first of eight children. So, I saw a lot of babies come home from the hospital in mom’s arms! “Grandma Van” was always there to help, and especially to be with the displaced youngest child so mom could attend to the infant.
Grandma Van had a quiet way, a comforting presence that was at the same time, clear and confidence-building. She would take the toddler’s hands in hers and admire them with a pat. “Look at those little hands! Oh, what those little hands can do!”
We could see the toddler grow inches right before our eyes under her spell. With great respect, she would hold hands to dance, to wash, to chant “Here’s a Ball for Baby…” She also loved to sing and dance in the kitchen doing dishes or preparing food.
With fond memories of my Grandma Van’s love and respect for small children, Little Hands began some 17 years ago. Little Hands aims to love and respect your child just like Grandma Van did. We want to bring out the song in your child and exclaim, “Look what those Little Hands can do!”
On behalf of Little Hands,
Photo caption: Grandma Van with Sarah, Beth’s first child