A colleague of mine requested an updated photo of Baby Jill, a weighted doll I made for my oldest for her seventh birthday. So, since we had to dust off our modelling skills, Jill came out in front of the camera, and the little one wanted in on the action as well. This doll was extremely well-received, and her mommy sleeps with her every.single.night. As in, if Jill is somewhere else (i.e. living room, under a basket, etc) she won't go to bed until she is tucked in with her. Good times. I, of course, being her mother and creator of Jill, couldn't be happier at this relationship. It makes my heart swoon!.
Both my daughters actually have very deep relationships with their dolls. They talk to them, dress them up on occasion, mostly fiddle with their hair (or lack there of, there are some bald babies lying about...) and interact with them on a daily basis. Some days the communication is short, a brief hello. Other days they spend hours and hours, moving them around the house, making them food, checking their vitals (doctor in the house!), and reading them their made-up stories. They co-create worlds together, they have fun, they dream.
I cringe a little when I hear people get rid of their kids' toys. I mean, I do it too, but with their permission (or let's say a little negotiation!). Some of the dolls are not played with in months, like in seven or eight months, and then one day they become "extremely necessary" and important, part of the activity of the day. The girls haven't forgotten them, they are just not needed as much as the legos, or the watercolours, or the box full of trinkets for a few months. They know the dolls are going nowhere, they know their dolls are their dolls, so they play with them when they want to. No pressure. No one is coming to sneak them out of the house, there is no monster under the bed threatening the security of their flock. Their dolls are here to stay (now those darn legos...if I step on one ever again...!).
These two dolls however, I am not sure why, but they are extremely needed. On a daily basis. They bear the marks of their mothers' love. They are smudged, have some stains, are so gentle-looking because my girls' grubby fingers pe them constantly. Baby Jill for example, is always a baby. She is mostly sleeping, every day, every hour. Some times her mommy wakes her up, feeds her, makes sure she doesn't have a soggy nappy, and off she goes. To read herself a book or tickle her sister. But Baby Jill is mostly on her bed, under the blankets, tucked and safe.
Princess Tiny on the other hand is pretty much the side-kick and partner in crime of the force to be reckoned pictured above, in the name of my littlest one. Tiny goes on all sorts of adventures: the bathroom diaries, inspect closets for roaring dragons, hikes up mountains of pillows and cushions, battles dust bunnies under beds. It is all fine and dandy to her, clever girl. She is so tiny that we really have to dig to find her, out of the situations in which her mommy leaves her when she is called upon fulfilling a boring chore, or interrupted from her imaginative play. I hate to say it, but at some point they gotta eat!.
Seeing their play blossom to these heights, now that they are home with me all day, is something that I wish I could properly translate. Is like they are opening up. I try not to get in the way of their machinations, and I pretty much listen and observe (as much as I can) without interrupting them, trying not to meddle too much into their quarrels, and letting them sort their games for themselves. At first, leaving school and its routine, we were feeling a little lost and with no point to look to. But these brave and curious girls are leading the way with their crazy imagination, and their love of play. I am in for a ride!.
And in case you didn't notice, they required to wear the same clothes as their dolls. Dear lord. Tiny and her mommy are sporting the dresses I made for them this past Christmas, as per my daughter's request. The other two jail birds, well...they are silly like that. Off I go now, there are dolls, new dolls, that need to be dressed and photographed as well. See you soon!.