Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The "Circle" of Life

Back in the 70s some time, I decided my girls were at an age where I could get them each a nice doll that they would take care of and that I could then hand down to their children. Fisher Price had just the thing...My Friend Mandy and My Friend Jenny. One Christmas I got the Mandy doll for Jodi and the Jenny for Jessica. Then I got the "official" patterns and made lots of clothes for them.

But it wasn't long before reality bit. One day I discovered that Jodi had cut Mandy's bangs! (Did she think they were going to grow back???) And not long after that, Jessica was playing with a smurf stamp and decided Jenny's forehead was a good place to try it out! Getting ink off of a vinyl doll's face isn't easy...and in trying many types of removers I managed to remove not only the smurf, but Jenny's painted-0n eyes as well!! So then I decided to keep the dolls anyway to show my girls' children just how awful they had been. I still have Mandy and Jenny and they are still friends. That's Mandy - on the left - having a perpetual bad hair day...and Jenny - on the right - who sweetly doesn't seem to "see" any flaws in her dear friend.

Skip forward (so quickly) 30 years and I'm glad I kept the dolls and all the clothes I had made for them. For now I have a granddaughter! :) Delight of my life, but a girl who really has never been interested in playing with dolls. :( What she loves is animals. Stuffed animals, plastic animals, pictures of animals. If it has four legs and makes strange sounds she's in love with it and will imagine it to have all kinds of personality. Her very favorite and closest friend is Meo. Aunt Jessica gave it to her when she was a baby and it has been her constant companion for these last 6 years. It is a little lamb and we have no idea where the name came from...except from Savannah's imagination. Jess got the lamb at the gift shop where she works and Savannah has come to call that place "the Meo store".

No way to make this long story short, so I'll continue. The other day I was talking to Jodi on the phone and she said, "I meant to tell you that the dress for the Mandy doll fits Meo and Savannah loves to put it on her". I said, "Well, then, she's in for a real treat because there is a box with more of them in the basement." She told Savannah that and now Savannah is so excited about coming over here this weekend. For Christmas this year, Jessica got her a blue lamb (Fluffy) and a pink one (Bubblegum) just like Meo and now she's wanting to dress them all. So today I dug out the doll clothes and washed them all up. They are now ready for Savannah to get excited over on Saturday.

Looking at them again brought back memories. It really is amazing how quickly the 30+ years have gone by since I made those clothes. And in my imagination they would be played with again by a little girl who was fascinated to have her mommy's old doll to dress up. But in reality they will be worn by a pastel plethera of sweet little lambs by their even sweeter friend. Sometimes the circle of life isn't a circle at all, but more of an ellipse. But it still just keeps rolling merrily along.


Amy said...

I love this! My girls love playing with all of our old toys. It is so fun to see them come to life again. Maya just got an American Girl from my parents for her 7th birthday, and she is in love with it. My mom is planning on making some clothes for it (the clothes at the store are SOOO expensive!) I just blogged about it if you want to read more. :-) Oh, and we made SURE when we gave it to her that she knew that she could not cut this doll's hair, mark on it, or otherwise alter it in any way! So far, so good, but it's still early ;-)

Anonymous said...

Well, the doll picture was just plain scary, but the story and the idea of Savannah playing with the clothes was so sweet!

Anonymous said...

and don' forget the other two little girls who got dolls a few years ago as well! mcd loves baby dolls and all things stuffed AND barbie, but not the in between dolls! go figure. enjoy playing dress up and take lots of photos to share! we are now into our new violin and childhood has changed since i was little! miz b