Wednesday, December 24, 2014

A Pre-Christmas Memory

I'm thinkin' it must have been about 40 Christmases ago... (Which is completely impossible, of course, because there's no way 1974 was actually 40 years ago. My math must be off somewhere.) Anyway, somewhere along in through there...

My mother, an accomplished and professional seamstress, sewed many of our Christmas gifts when we were growing up. Her project that year was to make five large rag dolls... one for each of us, boy dolls for my brothers, and girl dolls for my sisters and me. This was the pattern:
These were very large floppy dolls... about 2 feet long... so you can see it was quite an undertaking too make five of them, including the clothes. It seems Mother was sequestered in her bedroom with the door closed for days. We children had strict instructions not to go in there because she was working on "Christmas presents." Once our Christmas break from school started it was so hard to obey and not bother her.

One morning, shortly before Christmas, a friend of my mother's stopped by our house. Janie brought with her five large, flat wrapped gifts... and five much smaller ones. Even though it wasn't yet Christmas we were allowed to open them! Each of us received an over-sized Christmas coloring book and a box of crayons! We didn't even have to share our crayons with our brothers and sisters because we each had our own!

Probably a little birdy had told Janie that the preacher's kids needed something to do while their mother sewed. In any case, we happily gathered around the dining room table and spread open our new coloring books. I don't know how many days or hours that kept us occupied, but my mother still gratefully remembers the thoughtfulness of her friend that year.

I'm pretty sure I still have my doll from that Christmas packed away somewhere, along with other cherished rag dolls my mother made over the years. I would have liked to find her and take a picture to show you... but "ain't nobody got time for that" today. (I just Googled the pattern picture above.) But here's a snapshot from that era that I already had scanned. Obviously, it wasn't taken at Christmas time... but oh-so-definitely mid-1970s!
And yes, dear friends and readers, I do have good intentions of getting back to blogging! Maybe that will be a good New Year's resolution!

Merry Christmas to all!


nannyteaches said...

My mother made dolls like that for my sister and me. Mine got a cold so I put Vicks under her nose and my sister washed her dolls hair. Mom must have cried after the long hours it took to make them. We loved them and spent hours playing with them - good memories!

Jan said...

My mom made me Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls. I still have them. Two of my most prized possessions.
Nice to see you blogging again.

Farrah said...

Enjoyed your story and glad to hear you plan to get back to blogging! Been missing your posts!! (Not that I've been great about it this month, but I caught up a bit with 9 posts yesterday. Heh heh.)

A Romantic Porch said...

I remember those dolls!