Made with heart: Baraboo family makes stuffed animals for community children
BARABOO, Wis. — You’ve probably heard “if walls could talk,” how about “if your dining room table could talk?”
Well, you’d want to hear the stories from the Gorder family table in Baraboo. The family of five: Teri (Mom), Rob (Dad), Alyssa (18), Lexi (16 — she just got her driver’s license, YEA!), and Katelyn (13) come together for more than just “breaking bread.”
When the girls were little, Teri and Rob talked about what values they want to instill in them. One thing stood out, they wanted them to know about the world that existed outside of their home – their community and the people.
They wanted the girls to understand that there are kids who need help; kids who aren’t as fortunate as them. They came up with something different — handmade stuffed animals. Yes, that’s plural. That was about eight years ago and they’re still at it.
Every year, the girls come up with the “stuffed animal of the year.” Together, the entire family, including Roxie their 3-year-old Beagle, gather at the dinner table with the sewing machine, pins, fabric, stuffing, everything they need to create the plush toys.
The stuffies have gone to a wide variety of organizations such as Hope House in Baraboo, Safe Harbor in Reedsburg, River Haven in Portage, DAIS in Madison and Gio’s Garden in Middleton. The Gorders have also been known to drop off stuffed animals at homes where the family may be going through a rough time.
These aren’t your typical stuffed animals though. These all come with a reminder — that there are people out there who love and care for the recipient. See for yourself in this special Do Something Good video.
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