Donnell Wisnieski

My first dolls were taken from the trash in our local trailer park by my grandmother. She would wash them, curl their hair and make them complete new wardrobes on her little black Singer.

One year my half-sister came to visit from California and she had a brand-new baby doll, Tiny Tears! Oh, that was a wonderful doll - with eyes that were blue like the ones I wished for, and a trunk full of clothes. My parents spent all that they could that year on my Christmas birthday gift - a Tiny Tears that was all my own!

Not very long after that, as I was playing with the doll on the concrete patio, my great-grandmother became angry with me and threw my doll on the ground. Her little hard head cracked right down the center and she was like that forevermore. She now leaked when I gave her a bath and was prettiest when I put a bonnet on her. Still, she was and is my favorite doll.

Just yesterday, my sisters took me to a doll exhibit and sale with the convention in Kansas City and let me pick out a new doll. This one cost a lot more than my Tiny Tears - a reproduction Bluette with a red wig. Now I have a new little one to play with. I have already begun making her a pretty little dress with smocking from a magazine article I picked up on my way home from KC to St. Louis I will surprise my sisters at Christmas time with sweaters and smocked dresses for their Bluettes.

You're never too old to play with dolls!