Meet Didi (Dee-Dee). He's the constant companion and best friend of my 2 year old, S. He is a flatout bear, made of sheepskin and super cuddly, and as you can see, very well loved. Since S was 4 months old he has slept every night with his little friend. He named him Didi because he couldn't say "Stinky", which was our name for his bear.

fur missing, eye missing, and a horrible odour

Now, we have a little secret in our house. This Didi pictured is actually Didi number 2. The first Didi had an unfortunate situation with his leg. S liked to chew on his leg, until it came to the point where he had essentially eaten it when he was 1. When I did the switch of the first Didi, I explained that I had cleaned him and sewn his leg back on. My oldest child, then 6 years old said "Wow Mum, you did a great job!".... whereas my then 3 year old daughter eyed the new Didi suspiciously and said "but Mummy, how did you sew on his leg when S had eaten it?". A quick change of subject and it was forgotten about, but I knew that the next time we had to switch a bear it was going to be tricky..... for one, S. was older and could well reject a replacement bear. Secondly, his older brother and sister also had to be convinced that it was the same bear for a switch to work.

hole in the back

In preparation of the switch, I told S that Didi was going to the Teddy Bear Hospital, where they would sew his fur back on, fix the missing eye, and make him all clean and fluffy. S was very enthusiastic about this. Finally, a nearby shop had a bear in the right colour in stock, and I picked it up and started the preparations.


For 3 hours this morning, I managed to separate S from his constant companion, telling him that Didi would be in hospital, and would be coming home in time for S's nap after lunch. To convince the older two that it was in fact the same bear, a hospital record was produced, and the new and revitalised Didi was put on S's bed, with the ratty coloured ribbons (to help us find Didi when he is lost in the garden somewhere as he is the same colour as dirt) threaded through the label as always. 



My other two have also had a special friend for bed. My oldest, H has "Dear" (his word for bear), and has Dear 1 and Dear 2.... he had a replacement as well, and after finding the original in our cupboard 6 months ago, now sleeps with both of them. My daughter E has "Bubba" (her baby word for bear) and is also on her second. I'd just say that a white bear is not ideal. All three of them have taken their bears everywhere with them until they are around 3... which means that Didi's days should be numbered, but S shows no signs of leaving him on his bed for the day just yet. And who can blame him? Didi is a very soft and cuddly bear.


Dear 1 and Dear 2

I had a bear as a child, one of those Koala's that are sold in tourist shops, made out of kangaroo fur, imaginatively called "kwalie". I used to chew his paws, so they were all bald from the fur being sucked off. Sadly, I left him on a train in Scotland when I was 4. He was never found in lost property, and the bear I was given as a replacement was just not the same. He hadn't had the vigorous love of a 2 year old to soften the edges - there was no history.


Bubba

So, how did the swap go? Well, S walked in, spied rejuvenated Didi on his bed and squealed with excitement. He had an absolutely beaming smile on his face and shouted "Didi - you're all clean and fluffy, and you smell good!". Total acceptance. Tonight he is tucked up with Didi in his bed, clean and fluffy and very happy to be reunited with his special friend.


Pyjama'd up and ready for bed

So tell me.... what did you have as a child? Blanket, Bear or thumb?  

17 comments:

  1. This is the loveliest most charming post ever Heidi! The hospital admission record is wonderful! Hmm, I wasn't into fluffy toys/animals, din't suck my thumb or have a blankie, I just leeched onto my dad non stop.

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    1. I was always keen to get them to have something to attach to, other than me... I have friends that can't go out anywhere as the child needs them to get to sleep!! I think his bear makes him feel brave when he is out xx

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  2. What a lovely story - they are going to love this as a memory when they get older. Lucky they have you as a mum - mine would have just said - tough and not even replaced it!!

    Don't know how you do it, it truly is something I respect - family, renos, blog, and doll hospitals with hospital invoices - I don't have kids and yet I can still barely handle myself..!

    I had a baby doll that was apparently stolen - who would steal a doll?? But nothing could replace it apparently though I have no recollection. But I now have a blanket...Am I too old to do a Linus?? xx

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    1. Lots of balls drop all the time - I'm certainly not superwoman! The hospital invoice only took a minute, but did have a great impact. He took it to school to show the older children when we went to pick up the 7 year old.
      Can't believe your doll was stolen? You have a blanket? Well, better than a bear... I have heard that there are adults that still sleep with a bear. xx

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  3. Very clever idea Heidi - I must say the new Didi is looking mighty stylish. Jo xx

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    1. Fingers crossed he doesn't give the new Didi such a beating as the other two... although I'm not holding my breath! xx

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  4. I am definitely saving this for my daughter - such a great way to get a new lovey. My 18 month old grandson has a well loved blabla (cloud) that he sleeps with every night, and I had a bunny that I carried by the ears by day and slept with at night...just love Didi (the new and old)!!

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    1. We had a problem finding a replacement for the Dear (my oldests bear) as they'd stopped making them - I finally found one on Ebay in the UK after an exhaustive search, so after that I made sure that the thing they got attached to was easy to replace! xx

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  5. What a lovely thing to do! The hospital record is a work of pure genius!
    Both of my children have 'special' toys that have had to be replaced. M (nearly 12) has a flower toy, now so elderly and patched up that it bears no resemblance to its original self. It has been replaced 2 times, but the 2nd replacement was rejected, so is still in pristine condition! D (now 8) has teddy and sleep. 'Sleep' is an old Bonds blue sleep suit with cosy cuffs that he became attached to when he was 1 and a half. Needless to say, Sleep has been replaced several times too. Teddy, however, is still an original. He is known as 'smelly' by the rest of us, as he is pretty putrid these days. He gets a wash from time to time, but is looking very decrepit these days. I have promised to get him re-stuffed one of these days.....

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    1. That's so funny that D became attached to a Bonds wondersuit!! They do get pretty stinky, at first Didi smelt like sour milk (he had very bad reflux as a baby), and now it's kind of animal like instead. He loves the hospital record. He keeps making us read it out to him! xx

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  6. Awwww. Loved this post!!! You are the best mum Heidi!!!

    B

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  7. Farmboy who is 8 now had a small toy cow called "Missy". Even now if he is a bit stressed he will find Missy at night.

    Farmgirl has a selection and seems to rotate through them. Definitely no constant though. Current favour is a fairly unattractive purple unicorn pillow pet. She has now seen an ad on the TV for a pillow pet that lights up and wants one - I have said no!

    Love the hospital record - also love the flat bears. I often buy them for gifts when friends have babies as they are so gorgeous.

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    1. E has recently abandoned Bubba in favour of her doll Lulu, but when very upset, she will look for Bubba over Lulu which is interesting.
      The light up pillow pet sounds horrendous!!
      Flatbears make the best gifts - I give them to friends all the time too. xx

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  8. oh how sweet, what a nice mother you are. I had various things though I still have my terry towelling light blue dog called David Jones ..yes after the Sydney shop.

    I wish though I still had my 1960s Barbies..complete with Chanel type suits

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    1. That's very funny that you named your bear after DJ's! The Barbie collection sounds Fab - love the vintage Barbies, how sad that they're no longer yours smr! xx

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  9. So loved this post! Took me back to when 'teddy' (yes, original I know) went missing with child # 1 . The fairies returned her (thank God!) and she was clean as new!!! Lol! At 17, my daughter lost her again. I was so distressed at my daughter's heartbreak (though found 4 weeks later under her mattress ! ? ) that I purchased 'the' teddy again. $155 on ebay. From the US. Rare and collectable apparently. It's in a drawer now for her to-be-babe. Best Nanna ever award? In time...LOL....one day....
    x KL

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Architect & Interior Designer. Mother of three. A sometimes Cook, Baker, Reader, Gardener, Fashion Lover, Renovator, Writer of random things in South Australia email me on anadelaidevilla@bigpond.com
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