Tuesday, 6 April 2010

A Child's Favourite Thing








I was recently reminded how important it is, not only for an adult, but for a child to have one or numerous special favourite things. Over Easter I read a lovely paragraph in the book Home by Anita Kaushal;


You’ll never know which thing will become the best-loved, can’t-do-without, the night-time necessity. It might be a hand-stitched hand-me-down, a bright new soft toy, or a well-used blanket. Whatever they choose, it will mean security to your children and bring a sense of personal belonging and wellbeing. And you’ll end up treasuring it almost as much as they do.


Our Harry has a special ‘can’t-do-without’ friend he affectionately refers to as Duckie. Duckie was found on Harry’s first Easter Egg Hunt when he was 1 and has remained his most-loved and most treasured cuddly friend who {not so much these days now that he is a big brave 7 year old} would accompany us absolutely everywhere. There has been many a tear-filled night when we have driven onto the barge to go to our house at Stradbroke for the weekend and it was discovered that Duckie was not on board!

Due to major concerns from all that Duckie might one-day disintegrate, he has only had 3 baths in his lifetime - a drop into the washing machine and then a dash in the clothes dryer – always fearful that the opening up of the dryer door might just reveal the absolute end of Duckie. The slightest sign of wear and tear anywhere on Duckie signals Brad’s mother to quickly whip out the sewing basket. Complete relief is thankfully restored once she has worked her magic on our special duck.

We have all {my parents and my brothers and brad’s parents and of course Brad & I} loved Duckie just as much as Harry…well almost as much as Harry!

I think it is wonderful to encourage our children to embrace the love of a special thing. Just like we have special things which we keep and hold onto {something I have talked a great deal about here on ABT}, a child should feel the comfort and re-assurance of having their very own special things around them. With this in mind, I think we should decorate a child's room filled with the special things they love and encourage them to collect, collect, collect!!

It makes me wonder what it will be that our next child treasures. What special thing can’t your little one live without?


Here are some little cuddly creatures I placed into a nursery I decorated for some clients a while ago. I wonder whether their little boy now treasures any of these little friends we placed into his cot before he was born?!



An old photo of Harry with his treasured Duckie...


image 1,2,3 - via children's spaces from zero to ten and babies rooms zero to three by judith wilson, image 4 - via
interior divine blog

37 comments:

Emma said...

Bless! He is adorable. Emma

Jane said...

What a beautiful photo that last one is. Nothing more divine that a little child sleeping.

And it is funny what they love, you can't force them to have a favourite toy and it is often not what you would pick yourself! xoxo

Irene ~ RE~VINTAGED said...

Both my boys have had 'Blankies' and both are ragged and worn, repaired and darned, backing replaced etc but the absence of blankie is a major disaster akin to the end of the world!
I have driven back to shops on a number of occasions (thankfully sucessfully) when 'blankie' has not arrived home with its owner!!
I'm sure Duckie will be with your Harry all his life too.God bless Blankie and Duckie!

MB said...

What a sweet post! My parents have a box in their attic with my childhood blanket in it and even at 33 its nice to know it's there:)

pve design said...

My daughter has a special "bunny" which has been well loved. So much love that the fur has been worn down to a thread. The pink satin ribbon is tattered too but the love it shows from all the wear and tear is priceless.
I did have to replace him, after he was forgotten on an outing.
Heartfelt "absolutely favourite things" deserve a dedicated book!"
pve

Kimberlee said...

Hope you had a lovely Easter Anna. Harry and Duckie? Priceless x

Urbanstems said...

Thanks for such a lovely post. I agree 100%..you cant decide for them which will be that special item. Its all down to the child. My son has a piglet and a teddy and a blanket!!?! ..obviously he must be like his mother and loves to collect!!

shopgirl said...

Absolutely adorable photo of your son!

And I quite agree. It's something that they will remember forever.

SweetPeaknits said...

Such a lovely post. I love that paragraph you refer to and I totally agree with it. Which is why I have a chest in my attic of my childhood treasures and have started making one for each of my children. I find it sad that my husband doesn't have one that he can share with his children.

Hamptontoes said...

All special toys for a little one's room and what a lovely photo at the end!

Ness Lockyer said...

Oh how cute! Our boys both have beloved treasures. One is a blue soft as ever chenille bear called...bear. It was given to our three year old when he was a week old by my Mum and he goes EVERYWHERE with us. Our nearly 6 year old has a chenille dog called Puppy that was given to him by my Sister when he was 21 weeks old and he still sleeps with him now. I wash both of them in the machine in small lingere bags and they have had new insides a few times to fill them out. I cant agree with you more about these special things...it is so sweet.
Ness xx

the NEO-traditionalist said...

What a sweet post! I have a Duckie blanket in storage somewhere at my mother's home that was my most prized possession as a child. Your little Harry is adorable! xo katie

Richie's 2ts Inspires said...

My daughter have her baby blankett and after almost 19 yrs old since I purchased, she complained that it's tearing apart and she was very sad. The other treasure is her bunny which she got since she was 3 yrs old when she finish her first ballett term.

Harry looks so angelique in his pix.

Happy mid-week.

Erin @ SYL: Slipcover Your Life said...

What a fantastic post! I actually dug out one of my favorite books that my parents still kept for me while I was home for easter. The last picture of Harry with Duckie is precious...

A Perfect Gray said...

beautiful.

sarah, flourish design + style said...

Adorable! My youngest who is 2 is attached to her " mine ". It was named mine when she could hardly talk and was looking for her.. mine. So now it is falling apart, with holes, can't get it clean, but it's mine and she has to have it! xo

Georgia said...

I have two ducks i sleep with every night (well not when my bf is there obviously). One is yellow and one is/was pink.

They are sooooo trashed. one eye between them and no fur left. They have patches where my gran has tryed to stich them up to keep them but they are still fraying and empty of stuffing nearly.

I will be buried with my ducks no joke.

I love that he has a duck too :) mine look the same but slightly smaller.

xxxxxx

A-M said...

My 7 year old has 'Bun-Bun' a Peter Rabbit bunny head with a little square of poplin for it's body. It has a little rattle in it's head and I still see him reach for it and listen for the rattle when he is asleep! It was put in his hospital crib and has never left his side. Beautiful post Anna, you must be so excited anticipating your impending arrival. As an 'old girl', who wished she'd had 'just one more', I couldn't think of anything more exciting. I always said I had one more boy in me. My hubby just rolls his eyes!... A-M xx

Barb Fisher said...

My 3yo girl has a tiny little sheep, imaginatively called Sheepy. She cannot be without him at sleep time - and like you, he has only been washed about 3 times for fear of disintegration. Looking much more like a little rat than a sheep these days, but life without Sheepy is not worth contemplating!

acoure said...

What a gorgeous blog post! Just reading it and seeing the beautiful images took me back to my own childhood. The last photo is especially lovely and makes me think of my four year old niece and how peaceful she looks, when she's asleep with her favourite toy!
I love those little toys in the image before the last one. They would make great gifts!

Ashley L. said...

Such beautiful photos! So well done!

Vivi said...

What a beautiful quote. Makes me remember my own treasured things when I was little... :)

Acanthus and Acorn said...

Oh, thank you for a really lovely post and Harry is precious!

My once little boy had a favorite yellow stuffed dinosaur with a brightly colored spine...like a rainbow. He loved it so much. I was fortunate that it did wash very well and now lives in a "save" box.

My son is heading off to college in the fall and I'm so very glad to have kept this cherished memory!

GLENDA CHILDERS said...

We once left for a 2 months trip to Europe without "Beasly", my daughters teddy bear, which she had chosen to leave at home. After many sleepless nights ~ he arrived in the mail. Bliss!

Carolyn said...

Love the ideas for your new home and can't wait to see some pictures once you are done. My children's rooms could be described as ecletic and they are my two favourite rooms in the house. I go and lie on their beds and look around at their things and try and decorate from that perspective so that everything they can see is amazing or colourful or fun or interesting - oh and yes they both have gallery walls.

Sally J said...

I've just become a grandmother in the last 5 month, and I have another grandson due in 20 days! Such love, I've never known! Very different than the love one has for their child. I can't wait to see what sweet thing they grow attached to. I still have the lamb and the baby doll that my kids loved to death. Enjoy this sweet time.
Sally
www.divinedistractions.blogspot.com

ceo said...

SO adorable... I often wonder what Sophia will be attached to as she turns a year old.....


xxx
CEO

Twenty Two Flamboyant Street said...

Bless it! What a lovely story. Thanks for sharing.

Terri said...

This is such a sweet post. My oldest has a yellow & white checked blanket that she can't sleep with out. It started out as just a simple flannel receiving blanket that we got as a gift when she was born... now it's her security blanket.

Becky said...

what a sweet post. I completely understand. Both of my little girls have lovies. Which I fearfully put in the "hand wash" cycle. Lately I've noticed White Bear seems to have some atrophy occurring in his left leg (stuffing seems to be disappearing from it). I'll be thinking of Duckie next time I put White Bear in the wash.

Style Court said...

Anna,

What a beautiful post. I think you are so sensitive and smart to think about the objects kids become attached to. Many designers might overlook that. Being a mom probably makes you all the more in tune to your little clients :)

Melissa @ The Inspired Room said...

This was such a lovely and meaningful post, thank you Anna!!

Melissa

Lauren said...

My brother had a "blanky" that he couldn't live without, he carried it around like Linus from The Peanuts. We once left it at our lake house and had to double back to get it because wouldn't stop wailing. Now at 20, he still has a thing for blankets, all the throws in our house somehow end up in his room. And though he doesn't carry it around anymore, he still has the original blanky, it's all white now because he loved the color and design right out of it.

Charlene @lanfranchi family said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Millie said...

I 54 I still have my beloved teddy Enoch Bear. He's a little thread bare, but still in pretty good condition considering his advanced years. He has a special place on a comfy chair in our bedroom, just watching the world go by. My childhood dollies Susan & Fiona are still with us too. After 5 sons, I sure do hope that somewhere in my future is a little girl to share them with!! I have all the boys favourite bedtime buddies tucked away, ready to whip out should they ask for them!!
Millie ^_^
P.S. Is Brad having to paint your toenails for you yet Anna?

FlowerGirl said...

My daughter, Annick, who is now 19, has a special doll, JJ. JJ was a very ordinary looking doll, a plush body with a plastic head, hair, arms and legs. I think my husband picked her up at Toys R Us without much thought when Annick was an infant and she became Annick's great love. JJ was mended many, many times over the years until, one day her arms fell off and couldn't be reattached. Well, Annick wound up just taking the arms to bed! It was a little weird and distressing but JJ remained a comfort even dismembered. Annick relied on JJ even through high school, she was a comfort in times of stress.

Well, when it was time to leave for college, I asked Annick if she was taking JJ. She said no and it made me sooo sad. However, when Annick comes home for breaks I see her sometimes holding JJ's hands. It warms my heart.

Jayme Edens said...

My son has a treasured friend, "Marty Monkey", he received him from the ladies at the hospital, when he went in for a surgery he had done. He's been the best friend ever since. We too have the teary, sleepless nights when Marty isn't in tow. I adore the love between my son and his monkey. It really brings a smile to my heart.