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What's the right age?

My grandma sent over some things for me to give to my daughter, including an ornate wooden doll bed that her dad, my great-grandfather, made for her when she was a little girl in the 1920's, and a fancy quilt she sewed for the doll bed herself. I put the things away in a box on a high closet shelf, afraid that if my daughter had them now, she wouldn't take good care of them. They'd be just more toys in the pile, and it would be tragic if they got broken or had something spilled on them.

But two of my aunts came over today, after having taken my grandma out to lunch for her birthday. She just turned 93. I told them I'd put the doll bed and quilt away to give my daughter someday, and one of my aunts said not to wait too long to let my daughter have them. She said she and her husband had been given quilts for their two kids' beds. The quilts were made by a great-grandmother and passed down. She said she always kept the quilts packed away instead of letting her kids sleep with them because they were beautiful and she was afraid they'd be ruined. She said now the quilts are stuck in boxes somewhere and the kids have no emotional attachment to them.

So what's the right age?


Asked by Ballad at 12:13 AM on Jun. 17, 2013 in General Parenting

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Answers (7)
  • have them to remember when they were older. I told him I would rather they made memories with these quilts and if they wore them out I would make them more. I was astonished that I would do that.

    Mine were not intended to be heirlooms. I doubt that originally the cradle and quilt were meant to be either. The fact is that they have lasted this long and now they are and quite possibly worth dollars as well as sentiment. That puts them in a whole other category.
    The problem is that if she gets them too late she will not have the fondness for dolls (more than likely) and sadly your grandmother may have passed. If that is the case she will not be able to tell your daughter how it was given to her and how she loved to play with it and maybe other stories. She may hardly remember grandma when she receives it and it will be just another piece of old junk. A hard decision, indeed.

    Answer by Dardenella at 12:31 AM on Jun. 17, 2013

  • I think it really depends on the child. Some kids really care about things and take care of them, while some totally destroy their stuff.

    Answer by JulieJacobKyle at 12:15 AM on Jun. 17, 2013

  • I do not know but certainly at an age when she can still play with dolls. Maybe it could be for special play with you together and you put it up each time afterward until she is a little older.

    I like to make quilts. I have made them for every family member over the years.
    Many years ago we went to see DH' sister and family as well as his parents. We had a small early Christmas with us giving the gifts to the children because we wanted to see if they had liked them instead of maybe hearing later. There were quilts. My BIL said for them to look at them and then he would put them away for them. I was upset by this remark and told him that the quilts were made to be used. They were not intended to be heirlooms but slept under and dragged around. The kids were 6 and 8.
    He quietly argued that he knew how much time and money goes into a quilt, which was a little flattering, and that if the wore them out they would not

    Answer by Dardenella at 12:24 AM on Jun. 17, 2013

  • When I was five, you could have given me something like that, and I would have taken immense care for it.

    If I were to give something like that to my 6 and 7 year olds, they would have it ripped apart, colored on, in a general mess by the end of the day. They don't care and won't take care of the stuff they are given.

    If you believe she is too young right now, wait till she's 6 and see how you feel then.

    Answer by hopeandglory53 at 10:43 AM on Jun. 17, 2013

  • You know your child best. When my dau was in 1st grade, I decided she was ready to play w/ the doll my mom gave me. It was hers when she was young, came in a case & had a lot of homemade clothes that my G-ma made for it. I loved that doll & knew my dau would get a kick out of being the 3rd generation to play with her. When they know something has some special meaning, they will be extra careful with it. :)

    Answer by mrsmom110 at 7:35 AM on Jun. 17, 2013

  • I would think 5 would be a good age, but I would explain to her how very special they are and that she needs to take good care of them.

    Answer by missanc at 1:46 PM on Jun. 17, 2013

  • She's pretty good for a five-year-old. Not as bad as some I've seen. But still, she does her share of things without thinking, and stepping on one thing to get to something else--I really don't think five is the right age.

    Comment by Ballad (original poster) at 12:20 AM on Jun. 17, 2013