Kidding Around: My love of dolls
Everyone had that one favorite toy when they were little. Whether it was the stuffed animal that you slept with every night or that one army man that always made it through the day without being stepped on, they were always there for you when play time came around.
I do have a favorite stuffed animal. It's a dog named Baby Teddy. I got her for a present when I was little and named her after the Cocker Spaniel that we had at the time. I actually still have Baby Teddy. She is waiting safely in my apartment, because I clearly could not move to Rutherford County without her.
Aside from Baby Teddy, the toys that I loved were always dolls. My very small room was always full of them. My momma told me if she had known beforehand how many toys I was going to have, she would have requested that my room be bigger when they started building the house. I guess you could say I was spoiled.
Having a daddy that was interested in antiques, some of the first dolls I had were porcelain. It was always an exciting day if he would come back from an auction somewhere with a new, beautiful porcelain doll for me. Most of the ones he gave me were blonde, like myself, and wearing pretty dresses. These dolls were more for just holding though. I was told I had to be careful when I played with them because they were very fragile.
Yes, I was that girl that had to have a new doll all the time. For every holiday and birthday I always had the latest one picked out and was prepared to tell anyone who would ask which one I wanted. Most of the time, the ones I wanted were Barbies.
I was a true Barbie girl. I had a Barbie house, a Barbie convertible car and a Barbie cruise ship. The Barbie house was from 1979. It was so big that when my brother Andrew was little, he could lay down and fit in the bottom floor of it.
I had the teacher Barbie, the mermaid Barbie and the Barbie whose hair grew back when you cut it. If you can think of a Barbie from the 1990s, I probably had it. I also have some older Barbies that daddy would not let me get out of the box. He always told me they wouldn't be worth any money anymore if I took them out to play with them. I still love Barbie and aspire to be just like her one day.
When I was very young I would have what I called doll parades. I would bring all of my dolls out of my room and put them in a line in the living room. I wanted to display them all for the imaginary people who attended the parade to see.
I also played school with them, because little Erin wanted to be a teacher when she grew up. I would divide them into classrooms and the dolls that misbehaved had to go in the bathroom where Principal Andrew was waiting to discipline them. I don't know if Andrew was the best man for the job though, he never seemed to take it seriously enough.
The American Girl dolls were also some of my favorites. The first one I received as a Christmas gift was Samantha. I was so excited because they were the thing to have among all of my elementary school friends. After that, I had to have the magazines, the outfits and more dolls.
One Christmas, my grandma sewed me an entire box of outfits for my American Girl Dolls. I don't even want to think about how long that must have taken her. But my friends and I put those outfits to good use. I even got a doll customized to look just like me. This "Erin" doll had her own softball and Girl Scout uniform just like the real Erin.
I still have several of my dolls. I guess I can save some of them just in case I ever have my own daughter. I can only hope that she loves dolls just as much as I do.