Home » A Wasted Life » Wants Of Christmas Past

Wants Of Christmas Past

I had planned to do a post about things I wanted for Christmas as a child and noticed that my friend Brian Lageose@Bonnywood Manner had posted one.  It was the same way with the 12 days of Christmas, although his was about “the 12 shots of Christmas.”

I didn’t want to be accused of plagiarism, so I mentioned it to him.  I thought “dad burnit! He beat me to the punch!” We agreed that we must be on the same wavelength and therefore, meant to be friends so with his blessing, I submit the following.

My earliest memory of lusting after something for Christmas was when I was seven years old.  I wanted a “Sleepy Baby.”  I wanted one of those little dolls more than I had ever wanted anything.  There were boy ones dressed in blue and girl ones dressed, of course, in pink.

They were little floppy dolls, made in Japan with slits for eyes, a button nose and rosy cheeks.  They came in their own little box and were sold at Woolworths’.  I begged my grandma and grandpa for one but they cost 99¢.  Back then, that was a lot of money and certainly not money to be wasted on a doll.

I never stopped wanting a Sleepy Baby.

The second thing I lusted after was a Barbie doll.  Mama said “those dolls are ugly,” not to mention that they cost $3.00.  I knew I wouldn’t be getting one.  All the girls came to school after Christmas with their Barbie dolls and a vast wardrobe of clothes and shoes.  I got to hold one of them for a few minutes before the owner took it back.

My sister got a Barbie and immediately lost her shoes.  She asked me to steal a pair from one of my friends, which I did because I thought maybe she would start liking me.  She didn’t and all I did was get a little closer to Hell.

My sister also got a Miss Revlon doll.  It was a beautiful doll.  When she would beat me up, I would threaten to tell on her so she would quickly say “I’ll give you my Revlon doll.”
I never got the doll and I never told on her.  If I had, she would have denied it and then I would have gotten whipped for “lying.”

I never stopped wanting a Barbie doll.

The third thing I lusted after was a “dam doll.”  They cost $1.25.  That’s what a weeks’ worth of lunch cost.  Again, all the girls brought their damn dolls to school, running their long colored hair through their hands as they walked down the halls on the way to class.

Dam dolls were created by a Danish man named Thomas Dam, who had nothing to give his daughter for Christmas so he carved a little doll out of wood.  When the other little girls saw it, they wanted one and a popular toy was invented.

I never stopped wanting a Dam doll.

Six years ago, I was living alone in North Carolina.  Loser had just visited me and treated me like shit so I was feeling blue.  I don’t know why but around midnight, a Sleepy Baby popped into my mind.  I had recently discovered Ebay and since I couldn’t sleep, I thought I’d give it a go.

I looked up Sleepy Babies and lo and behold, there was one for sale and it was only $9.99!  It looked like it had never been taken out of the box.  I was the only person bidding on it so I won it.  When it arrived, I held it for what seemed like hours.
I told my sister that I had finally gotten a Sleepy Baby and she immediately started searching for one.

In the meantime, now having mastered Ebay, I looked for a Miss Revlon doll.  I probably have fifteen or twenty now and they’re packed up in the garage.  I told my sister that since I never got hers, I bought my own.  She immediately went on Ebay and bought one.

Having found my own Miss Revlon doll, my search for Barbie continued.  I had, through the years found a “bubble cut” Barbie, but what I really wanted was a “ponytail” Barbie.  I had all the different hair-colored Midges and even a flocked haired Ken but the prized Barbie still eluded me.

I finally found one and it came dear.  I bought a special case to put her in.  Loser saw it and said “what’s the significance of the doll?”  When I told him that he knew I had always wanted an original Barbie doll, he said “oh, yeah. Pftttt.”
He had never paid any attention when I talked about my youthful wants and dreams, so the idea that I would still want something from my childhood was completely lost on him.

The last thing on my “lust” list was the Dam doll.  I searched and searched.  There were lots of knock-offs and it was important that I find one of the originals.  I even mentioned to Loser that I was searching for an original “Dam doll,” thinking that maybe since we had a friend who lived in Denmark, he might make a call and say “find one.” He never took the hint, so it was back to Ebay.

It took a few weeks but soon, my “new” old Dam doll was on its way.  She had blonde hair, just like my Barbie and my Sleepy Baby.


My collection was now complete.  Those things brought back not only my childhood but it meant that after all those years, some of my dreams had finally been realized.






29 thoughts on “Wants Of Christmas Past

    • Yeah, but I’ve got them now. I actually took my little Sleepy Baby out of her box last night and looked at her and I got Barbie out. I couldn’t remember if she had the hoop earrings…but she does! My dam doll is on a chest at the foot of my bed. Every now and then, I knock her off..but I always apologize when I do it. LOLOL

      Liked by 1 person

  1. A great post, Lauren. A good friend of mine, who also happens to be a former boss, shared with me a few years ago that he spends many a happy evening searching on eBay for things he never was able to get as a child. I’ve done the same — it’s a kind of clarifying, uplifting moment when you actually buy it. Good for you. I hope you continue doing so! – Marty


    • I don’t search anymore. Just those three things were enough. The man I bought the Sleepy Baby from said his dream was a 1965 Ford Mustang. He was 60 years old and has just found it. I could hear him beaming through the Internet. LOL


  2. Another lovely piece, Laurel. It’s never too late to get the things that you want, with a few exceptions of course. I have a history of going into a collecting frenzy about having certain things, and then suddenly moving on to something else. The oddest obsession was probably my “mixing bowl” fetish. I have sets of them crammed everywhere in this house. I don’t know where the inspiration came from, but they made me happy for awhile, even though now I keep going back to the same worn-out set when I cook. And as we discussed, I might have to start collecting vintage typewriters next, but I’ll probably have to get rid of some of these bowls before I can do that… 😉 (Oh, and thanks for the shout-out!)


    • I have an old mixing bowl that belonged to my grandma. Who knows how old it is…but it is very dear to me.
      I can’t think of anything else I wanted from childhood….except what I would never find on EBay.
      And…you’re certainly welcome for the shout. 😊🎄


  3. Barbie taught me not to peak at presents. I wanted one soooo bad. When my G-Ma showed up for dinner, I suspected that’s what she’d got me. I was stealth about opening a corner to confirm I was getting my Barbie!! But having to act surprised, when I no longer was, caused me to never ever, in my entire life, ever peak at another present.

    I know I’ve done some of those ebay purchases to reconcile my childhood but don’t currently recall any specifics.


  4. I hope more of your dreams will come true, glad you found something you’d wanted for so long and went ahead and bought them, so at least they couldn’t take that away from you.


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