When my son Ben was little, he drooled . . . a lot. At first, I snapped little terry cloth bibs around his neck to help protect his outfits, but he outgrew the bibs before he stopped drooling, and his little shirts and the bibs of his overalls were always soaking wet. So one day, on a whim, I tied a navy blue bandana around his neck to catch the drool.
He didn't mind wearing it, and it was easier to change the bandana than the shirt, so for the next two and a half years, he almost always had a bandana tied around his neck. We collected bandanas in all the colors we could find, and I usually tried to match the bandana to his outfit.
Sometime around Ben's third birthday, he gradually stopped needing the bandanas. Our second son used them for a little while during his first year, and our daughter didn't use them at all. So when kindergarten rolled around for Ben, I used some of the bandanas to make his kindergarten nap mat. Long after kindergarten, Ben and the rest of us used his bandana blanket to wrap up in on cold days. It's now stained and thin in spots, but I can't imagine getting rid of it or of the rest of the bandanas that are stacked neatly in the corner of my top dresser drawer.