The first toy that I remember is the bear I am holding in the above photograph. Her name was Beatrice. She wore a frilly, light blue pinafore. In this picture she looks quite fresh. Maybe I received her for my first birthday. I had her for a very long time. I don’t remember when she disappeared or was thrown out.
Here is collage of me with a variety of my early toys. They included a wagon, old pots and pans, a wooden push mower, plastic records, a ball, a tin dollhouse, a little Beauregard doll with a bottle that emptied and refilled, little flat plastic cowboys. I had several buggies and strollers and an endless supply of dolls. Books aren’t really toys but I had many little golden books during this time. The swing that Pearl is putting a doll in, was made of wood and blue. The tin ferris wheel was also hers and took many a little doll for a ride until it was no longer around.
After my sister Pearl was born when I was 2.6, I played with her most of the time because she was always there. And, of course, she was a delightful playmate. One of the best addition to any playthings we had during those years was our imagination. I remember in later years making bows and arrows from sticks, strings and bottle caps, riding on saw horse and playing endless imaginary games with our cousins. We had a good supply of Little Golden and Wonder books.
The first board game I remember was “Sorry”. We played it often in the evenings the summer that we spent at my mother’s parents. My grandfather, Poppy, played with us while eating his snack of grated cheese and ritz crackers and a glass of buttermilk. Later I remember playing cards on the basement stairs of my cousins, endless games of “War”.
When we were older one of our gifts at Christmas would be a board game and we would play it over and over during that Christmas. Some never saw the light of day again but some we played throughout the years. Monopoly was popular for awhile. Chess was a staple. The summer of 1966 when I met my future husband at Wayne State University, we played chess almost everyday. He also taught me to play Solitaire.
We still play a lot of games in my family. “Five Crowns” is popular with my grandchildren. My husband and I play “Sequence” a lot. When I play games with my grandchildren I never let them win or make it easier for them than I would an adult. I don’t try to crush them, but if they win, they really won.
There is a toy trunk in the collage that I received as a gift one Christmas. That is as close as I could get to the well packed travel case below. Next time I go anywhere, I’m going to take a picture of my suitcase.