AtoZ Letter S~Sister's Sears Crib and The Swinging Ring Test

It's the first thing to get ready for the arrival of a new member of the family.
Unless....that Sweet Baby arrives before the Crib!
Then a Dresser Drawer is where you keep that Sweet Baby warm!
Such was the case when my Baby Sister was born in September 1957.   I was ten years old and even though I was a TomBoy, I did love baby dolls and was quite excited that a real baby was on the way.  It didn't matter if it was a boy or a girl....back then it was always a surprise...unless of course you believed in the 'Swinging Ring Test'.  Here's how it was done...
...take off your wedding ring, tie it to a piece of string, and hang it over your belly. 
If it swings in a circle, you are promised a boy;  back and forth indicates a girl. 
I remember my Grandmother Minnie making the trip from Iowa to be with my Mother for the birth of my third sibling.  I already had a younger brother and sister...yes, I was #1....so it really didn't matter to me if the new baby wore pink or blue. 
 Mother was prepared for either one with saved baby clothes from us first three, and new baby things were yellow.  After three babies and twice that many moves,  the first crib didn't make it for baby number four.  A new Crib was on order from the Sears catalog.  It was late and 'Baby Sister' was early.  
Thankfully, Grandmother Minnie's solution of a Dresser Drawer worked out perfectly.  Especially when you wanted to muffle the crying baby...close the drawer...just kidding!  She didn't cry all that much, and when she did I was right there. 
Here we are 56 years later...and I'm still right there...playing dress-up and keeping her CRIB warm with Quilts.  Thank-you Minnie for this memory, and Mother...I'm so glad your 'Swinging Ring' swung back and forth.


  1. Close the drawer - LOL Thank heavens for older wisdom - I imagine not having a place for the new baby to sleep would have been a nightmare.
    Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

  2. We did the swinging ring over my friend's daughter and it worked too -- a girl just as predicted.

  3. Neat story and pics. I'm 10 years older than my sister (my brother is inbetween). We did have a crib for her, but it was like having a live doll to do stuff with. She got more interesting by age 5 and I was 15 - like having an adoring servant at my beck and call. (just kidding, but not completely).

  4. Hello Sue! I have missed seeing you and yet everytime I come by I feel like I just saw you. You are such a memorable lady and I so love knowing you here. I love your stories that you weave so beautifully and tied up with awesome photos. I remember that ring test and my grandmother did it too! She was blind but we would hand her the string/ring and she would know by the feel of that string swinging about. What fun! I was just a kid back than but you have reminded me of a very precious memory. My grandson and his Tarrah are expecting baby number two. Today they have gender reveal parties and we found out last month another boy is headed out way! I love them healthy and perfectly pink with those ten fingers and toes. But I went shopping and laid away so much for the new lil fellow that our precious grandboy Jayden states he will name "BatMan". Soof course, you know I found all the Batman clothing on sale and stocked up! Before we found out the sex of this new baby Jayden told me, "Grammie, I will have a sister so she can be a superhero like me!" The boy is a precious wealth of information. That swinging ring was right nine times out of ten in my phamily! Thanks for the memories Hugs, Anne

  5. That's a sweet story. I like the image of Sister sleeping in the drawer, and the temptation to close it when she cried. :-)

  6. I love this story as well as the idea of keeping a baby in a drawer. I remember reading about how in Finland babies would sleep in special cardboard boxes given to all new parents. :-)

    Cait @ Click's Clan

  7. What a sweet story :-)
    I didn't know the story of the ring. But one of my sister's workmates always guessed if a boy or a girl was going to be born, provided she could see the mother in the first months of the pregnancy. My sister says she's never been wrong. And she herself couldn't explain how she knew, she just said it was something in the shape of the belly.
    I think it was magic ;-)

    The Old Shelter - Roaring Twenties

  8. Oh yes, the swinging ring said I was to have a girl. I named her Anna Elise until the instant I heard the doctor say, "It's a boy" - my, my. Thank you for your story - such a wonderful storyteller!
    PowerofStoryBlog - Every Hero Has a Story

  9. I laughed out loud for this post! What many mother's with colicky babies would give to shut them in a drawer! Thank God doctors still prescribed paregoric when my son was an infant!!! Love the photo! You look like true Southern Belles!!
    Visit me at: Life & Faith in Caneyhead
    I am Ensign B of Tremps' Troops
    with the A to Z Challenge

  10. Hi Sue - there's always a way isn't there .. and the drawer would be a perfect crib ... bet your mother was pleased to have her mother's helping hands for the new baby with three of you already around. The picture of you and your sister is perfect .. delightful .. cheers Hilary


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