Horsman Babs

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The Importance Of Being Earnest

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The diminutive Babs

Below is the story of Babs and how she came to be put up for adoption this very week.*

You can see Babs adoption page HERE.

“All right, girls! I’ve called this meeting to make an important announcement.” They all collectively groaned. I think they knew what was coming. This certainly wouldn’t be the first time.

As I talked, I paced slowly back and forth in front of them like a Sergeant. “As you may or may not know – ”

“WE know!” they interrupted.

“…I’ve been doing “Simplicity” dolls for the past several weeks so that I could finish the book…” I continued, as if they hadn’t spoken at all. A small arm was waving from the crowd. “Yes, Petunia?”


Little Babs finally gets her marching orders.

She quickly lowered her arm and lisped, “I thought you finished it two years ago.”

I opened my mouth to speak again.

“I thought it was two months ago!” Jean cried out – without raising her hand, mind you.

“No, no, no, no,” said Elaine. “It was ‘xactly one month ago today…”

“Actually, you’re all right,” I spoke softly, and everyone quieted down to hear. “But with each passing, the story gets better and better. My goal is for everyone out there to love you and all the wonderful things you represent as much as I do. So while it does take away from you for right now, it will help us all in the future. Right?”

The sea of small faces nodded back at me quietly. “Therefore, I regret to say that none of you will be put up for adoption this Sunday. I’m sorry.”


These are my favorite pajamas to date. Nice and cozy. Just in time, too! It’s in the 40s here in Iowa as I write!

I was greeted with silence. For a bit.

“No!” A small voice cried out from the back of the crowd. I looked but didn’t see anything. I did, however, hear a fiercely hushed conversation coming from the same direction as that no. And then I did see an arm raised.

“Yes? What is it?” I called out.

A rather large doll stood up, and as soon as she did, she promptly bent down again and re-emerged, a smaller doll hoisted up into her arms. “This is Babs,” the larger girl explained. “She can’t raise her arm because she’s a little too tightly strung, but she would like to have a word with you, if you please.”

Little Babs comes with a LOT.

Usually the O.L.D.s (Once-Loved Dolls) accept what I say with a little groaning, yes, but without question. To have such a bold move come from one so small was a novel situation. Rather than speaking from her position at the back of the crowd, she made her way up front and motioned for me to lean down. She was only about a foot tall, from what I could tell. There was no way I could get down that far and maintain my dignity! I picked her up and lifted her to my ear instead. And listened.

When she finished, there was no way I could let another week go by without putting her up for adoption. Other things would have to wait. With so many girls to choose from, and new ones showing up on my doorstep, it’s hard to remember them all, but little Babs reminded me: She was supposed to be O.L.D. number 4. Number 4. But I have to go where my inspiration moves me, not from callousness, but from necessity, and she was set aside. I always say you have to listen to that still, small voice, and in this case the small voice came from a very earnest Babs, who felt that now the timing was exactly right, and that while she may be no one special – a Horsman doll made to compete with the very popular Patsy – her new little human was waiting in the wings for her. Not a year ago, not next week, NOW.


I have no idea how I was able to say no to that earnest little face the first time around. It wouldn’t happen again!

And so, without further ado, I present O.L.D. No. 53, Babs, the little girl with the very earnest request.

The next O.L.D. won’t be this Sunday, she’ll be up for adoption this WEDNESDAY at 6:33 instead. That book’s not going to write itself. I left a pen by the computer and everything. No dice. With each pass it gets better, and we’re still going to publish this fall.

Pretty in purple Penelope was adopted by the lovely Linda L. of Portola Valley, California. Thank you so much, Linda!

And with that, I leave you! Have a great weekend, you’re my favorite!

*My brothers tell me that this kind of post makes me sound a little insane. It would – IF – it hadn’t actually happened. HAH!

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