Stinker started life as a soft doll with a velour-like covering. Her hands and face were pale peach. Her hat and bodysuit (both non-removeable) were candy pink with satin trim on the sleeves, feet and hat. The trim was in pink, yellow and green - stripes for the sleeves and a swirly pattern for the feet and hat. Stinker's hair is straight now, two narrow, faded yellow ribbons hanging down over her face, but it used to be curled in corkscrews. Her once-vibrant blue eyes and pink facial features have faded to less distinct shades.
Over time, Stinker has taken on a dinginess. She is sort of grayish all over now, but that doesn't bother the GB. She comes up with the most interesting situations and scenarios for Baby Stinker. Above, Stinker is seeing a doctor, who wears Ziploc sandwich bags on her hands and uses the handle of a jump-rope to administer crucial medical treatments. It has been interesting to watch their relationship evolve. Stinker is more than just a soft thing to cuddle. She is also a conduit for many of the GB's thoughts and feelings and fears, and the GB often speaks through her, telling us when Stinker is worried about something and reassuring her about new experiences.
Stinker was a woman of action when she was younger. Both small Bears played with her a lot. She was thrown across rooms and dangled over stairwells. She raced at high speed through the house, strapped precariously to a doll stroller. Noses were wiped on her. She was vomited on. Back then, Stinker took rides in the washer and dryer, tied inside a pillow case, until she became too delicate for such adventures. Now, she is gently hand-washed in a basin with warm water and a drop of Woolite. She has given up the dryer altogether.
Thankfully, Stinker stays cleaner in general nowadays than she used to, but she still gets plenty of attention. Stinker is so deeply loved that she often develops holes and tears in her seams. We try to mend her as soon as possible when this happens, so as to preserve her for good playing and sleeping. She has stitches on most parts of her body. It's actually the Bear who mends her most often, getting out his own sewing kit to repair these injuries to dear little Stinker. Here, he repairs Stinker's hat earlier this summer; the little satin piece at the top had torn and the stuffing was starting to come out.
He really enjoys the opportunity to fix Stinker for the GB. He talks to Stinker while he works, telling her each step of the way as he threads his needle, prepares to make the first stitch, closes up the hole with tiny, neat stitches, ties the thread and cuts it off. The GB watches raptly, looking a little nervous and listening carefully, knowing that Daddy will fix Stinker and make her as good as new, or almost. She tells Stinker not to worry. When he's done, he gives Stinker back and they hug and hug. I love that he does this for her, and that he does it cheerfully and with imagination and kindness.
|Christmas Day 2008|
It's just my own personal theory, but I think Stinker and the GB get along so well because they looked alike when they first met. For the GB, it must have been like looking in her (plastic, somewhat distorting) toy mirror. No wonder they fell in love so fiercely and enduringly.
Don't forget to visit the other Color Collaborative blogs for more of this month's posts. Just click on the links below:
Annie at Annie Cholewa
Sandra at Cherry Heart
Gillian at Tales from a happy house.
CJ at Above the River
Sarah at mitenska
What is The Color Collaborative?
All creative bloggers make stuff, gather stuff, shape stuff, and share stuff. Mostly they work on their own, but what happens when a group of them work together? Is a creative collaboration greater than the sum of its parts? We think so and we hope you will too. We'll each be offering our own monthly take on a color related theme, and hoping that in combination our ideas will encourage us, and perhaps you, to think about color in new ways.