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  • Writer's pictureBetty Girardeau

Christmas in the Mists of Time #6

I still love dolls. I have had many wonderful dolls over the years and I still have most of them as well as the German bisque one that my Mother received when she was a child. The picture above was probably the Christmas I was five and received one of my favorites. I named her Fuzz because of her wonderful REAL, soft, curly human hair. I was told that my Father had picked her out, probably at FAO Schwartz in New York when he had to go to the city on a business trip. My mother made a complete and gorgeous wardrobe for her. When I received her she was wearing a beautiful organdy Christening gown, slip, and bonnet. Other clothes that she came with and which my Mother had also lovingly made were a cute pair of footed pink flannel pajamas, and an every day dress. The following Christmas I received another baby doll. As much as I loved Fuzz, my friends had gotten Betsy Wetsy dolls the year before and I wanted to have one, too. As I grew up, my dolls kind of did, too. My first Madame Alexander doll was called Maggie, and she had red hair. Mother made a lot of clothes for her, too, some of which matched dresses that I had. When I received Alice in Wonderland a year or two later, since she was the same size as Alice, they could share wardrobes. I have a whole suitcase full of clothes and a tiny cardboard chest of drawers full of shoes of various colors and socks for them. These were not inexpensive dolls at the time, and I guess could be equated to today's American Girl dolls. I am sure Mother told me that they were expensive dolls and I should take care of them, though I could play with them. And I did both. When I finally had my own daughter I hoped that she, too, would love having dolls, but the only one she ever really wanted to have was a "hard faced" Cabbage Patch doll. We had "adopted" an original soft faced one several years before Mattel bought the rights, but Anne had to have what her peers had. They are cute dolls, even the "hard faced" ones, so not only did Anne have one, I bought a boy one for myself. I had fun making a lot of clothes for both of them. I used to teach doll clothes making classes when I lived in Virginia, and added to my doll collection at that time so that I would have one that would be the same size as the American Girl dolls. But continuing love affair with dolls really started that Christmas of 1947 and Fuzz.

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