The Christmas Doll

We lived in a quiet little town in western Minnesota. The year was 1946 and I was 8 years old.

Our church always had the children put on a Christmas program for the parents. I had a piece to memorize. My sister was an angel. She was pretty much perfect so she fit the part.

The treat at the end of the evening was a paper sack filled with peanuts in the shell, an orange and hard ripple Christmas candy.

My sister and I had a competition on who could make the candy last the longest. She had the discipline to still have some left in January. I don’t think I ever won that contest.

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This was the year after World War II was over. During the war, you couldn’t buy anything rubber. Getting new tires for cars was nearly impossible.

The reason I remember the 1946 Christmas is that I received my first and only doll. She had rubber arms and legs. Her porcelain head had blue eyes which opened and shut. I named her Carol after Christmas carols.

In those years children didn’t receive many gifts. We were given maybe one or two things.

Taking care of what you got was a high priority because you know there would not be a replacement.

Thus I took very good care of my doll. In fact, she is now 73 years old and sits in a corner of my living room. And I am now 81 years old.

Luann Rice