Advent Calendar Day 7: A Christmas Kodak Moment By Tara Paray

Tara's number 7 from Pixabay
Image Source: Pixabay

A Christmas Kodak Moment By Tara Paray

Ever have a Christmas ugly cry? I have, and, yay for me, it was caught on camera!

Picture it: sometime in the 80s. Cabbage Patch Kids are all the rage, and that means they can’t be found anywhere! Once a toy store got them in stock, they were gone in mere minutes! The news of their arrival spread, not like wildfire as this was pre-Internet. But quickly, by word of mouth (oh, how I miss old school things sometimes…).

I didn’t care. I was little and I wanted that doll! They were soooooo cute! And everybody had one! And… and… I don’t understand supply and demand. I’m a kid!

My father apparently took that to heart. I’m not sure how it all came about, but his sister the seamstress came across a pattern… for a CABBAGE PATCH KID! So she made one for him and my mom to give me that Christmas. It wasn’t the official one, but it was as close as they could get. Nothing would stop them from getting me what I wanted!

Christmas morning. I know there’s no kid from the Patch in my boxes. I dutifully and, yes, still happily, open my presents, happy to have received them at all whilst learning to live with true disappointment. Oh, the angst of being a girl!

Then! When I thought all the unwrapping was done, my dad pulls out this big box and hints that maybe it’s for me and I just didn’t see it. Another present? What could it be?

I shook it – that’s required.

I felt around the outside – just felt like a box.

With no idea what it could be, I started tearing off the wrapping. A big brown container with no writing on the sides revealed nothing as to its contents. Curiosity’s got me now! So I rip open the top. Then this happened:

Tara and Cabbage Patch Kid 48.6 kb

(And I have to live with the fact that’s on film for eternity.)

It wasn’t an official store bought doll. It was BETTER! Made just for me. Awwwww.

I named her Mary Ellen after my aunt who made her. I still have her, too, on a shelf with other special keepsakes from my younger years. I did eventually get my official doll, too (his name is Reggie Wally). The way I got him and how my dad struggled to get him is for another time (and hopefully the book I’m writing). I still have him, too. He sits near his handmade sister, two reminders of what love looks like in material form.

I hope your holiday and winter season is filled with reminders of love!

About the author: Tara Paray shares smiles across the miles at She’s also on Twitter @TaraParay. Her ugly cry still looks like that, too. Her hair, thankfully, does not.

21 thoughts on “Advent Calendar Day 7: A Christmas Kodak Moment By Tara Paray

  1. This is a wonderful story! And sadly a gesture of love most modern moms can’t easily replicate. All the wished for toys are so electronic and complicated now.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I guess an electronic toy cannot be made by hand, which is too bad. I too received a handmade doll from my grandmother for my 3rd birthday, and she is still loved and cherished. I was never fond of plastic dolls, and so proud to have her, because she was unique. But then I never wanted to be like the other kids (or adults now) I wanted to have different and unique things.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Awe, what a sweet post! I’m glad they captured the moment (even though it may not have felt great back then – it makes a great story!). I love how you keep those signs of being loved. Sweet, so very sweet.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. This is a true Christmas story! And the true shout for joy of a child…. Why would you be ashamed of being photographed? On the contrary, this is great memory captured and kept. 🙂
    (Now, just in confidence between you and me, I have no idea what the true thing might have been – never heard of it before.) But the story is universal.
    Happy, loved child!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. What a fabulous story and your aunt and parents were incredible. I never had my own Cabbage Patch Kid as I was just a tad old for them. What I do remember is inheriting my aunt’s old Barbie doll which seemed pre-historic at the time. It was bald and came with a series of wigs she could wear with different hairstyles. I took her to school and someone stole her wig, which just left her bald. Cindy had just come out and she not only had luscious blonde hair but she also had bendy arms and legs and my Barbie could have been a stick.Is hate too strong a word? Did not like that barbie at all! My parents could afford a doll for me but I’ve since found out that my mother never played with dolls and couldn’t see the point. She had two younger sisters and I think the youngest was her doll. Strangely, I have bought my daughter a couple of truly beautiful dolls. They are called the Australian Girl Doll
    My sister-in-law had a doll deprived childhood and adored dolls and she’s become a serious doll collector. She loves them!! Evidently making up for childhood deprivation.
    xx Rowena


I won't bite, seriously!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.