Here#039;s to the kid in us this Christmas

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 6, 2003

When I was a little girl, I loved dolls – baby dolls, Barbie dolls, Chatty Cathy, Dawn dolls, bride dolls – you name it, I probably either had the doll, or deeply coveted it. (I also had quite a fondness for stuffed animals.)

I may be a middle-aged woman, but all these years later I still have a soft spot in my heart for such childish pleasures.

If I pass a display of soft, furry toys, it’s inevitable I’m going to pause to pick up one of the benign beasts so I can give it a quick stroke and cuddle. When I go to the mall in Montgomery, I have to stop and browse a bit at the kiosk filled with pretty dolls.

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I can’t help but admire their wide, long-lashed eyes, dimpled porcelain smiles and shiny tresses, just begging to be touched. I guess some things one just never outgrows.

Personally I think there is something in all of us (no matter how old our ‘outsides’ grow) that still loves the toys of our childhood. My husband can’t pass a display of GI Joe dolls or model airplane kits without a certain gleam appearing in his eye (oh, the happy memories of all the little green plastic Army men he and Allen Phelps once blew up together).

Over the past few years, we have re-connected with our inner child, you might say.

Benny started it one Christmas when he surprised me with a lovely doll, all decked out in blue velvet and lace. As I stroked her long, blonde sausage curls (not unlike the ones I once sported to church many moons ago), he smiled and said softly, &uot;It’s kind of an ‘Angie’ doll.&uot;

Funny, I seemed to get something in my eye about that time. You know how it is.

Turn about is fair play. Benny now has a collection of GI Joes once again, replicas of those original 1960s models that brought him hours of pleasure.

They may or may not become valuable ‘collector’s items’ one day. However, they put a smile on his face when he unwrapped his gift on Christmas morn, and that’s what counts.

On Christmases past, I’ve given my sister Sara a Barbie doll (complete with her own Barbie dog) and a certain literary pooch named &uot;Wishbone&uot; with his own assortment of cute doggie costumes. She was delighted. I was gratified by her glee.

Benny and I conspired with my dad to surprise Mom with her own lovely white holiday teddy bear one year, sneaking it out after all the other presents had been opened.

I wish you could have seen the look on Mama’s face. It was just like a kid’s at Christmas.

Here’s to the kid in all of us this holiday season.

Angie Long is the Lifestyles reporter for the Greenville Advocate and can be reached at 382-3111 or via email at