Sunday, 15 April 2012

The "Bear" Necessities ...

And some bears ARE necessary. Those bears that are picked up by babies and held on to, tightly, as that baby grows and grows.Well I say bears, but it could be anything really as long as it's fluffy, cuddly and provokes a heart-rending wail if you forget to take it with you EVERYWHERE you go.

And it's not something that's going to go away as that baby grows either, that scrap of fur becomes part of the family. Always there at the end of your child's arm; they play together, they sleep together, they holiday together. It sits up at the tea-table or shares the sofa, it travels with you or it waves at the window when, finally *sigh,* you've convinced the child that it's safe to go to school without them

So meet the, um, extended family:

Pink Bear mk2 belongs to TeenTwin1. The original Pink Bear was, unlike Pink Bear mk2, actually pink and abandoned in a Mothercare about ten years ago. TeenTwin1 was never a big fluffy lover, preferring her thumb as a constant bedtime companion, but when she eventually noticed the bear was missing all hell was unleashed. Mothercare was returned to, fruitlessly searched and the staff given a grilling worthy of Marathon Man but Pink Bear was apparently lost in the field of combat.
After a suitable period of mourning, Pink Bear mk2 arrived as a replacement. He's a replica of Pink Bear mk1 in every way except colour and so for several years, he was regularly dyed pink but TeenTwin1 is 16 years old now and pink is very much the last colour on her spectrum. (I'm still waiting for a request to dye him black).

The T-Bears - Sniffy Foot (on the right) and Sniffy Ear - are almost the oldest inanimate members of the family arriving into our lives when the twins were a day old. The intention was one bear per girl but it didn't quite work out that way and TeenTwin2 has monopolised them from that day to this.
One of the bears has a threadbare ear and one a threadbare foot where TeenTwin2 used to hold them to her nose to sleep (no, I don't know why either) but it means it's easy to tell them apart if, um, you ever had occasion to.

Yabbit is not a rabbit or a bear or an anything readily identifiable, though at one point I was strongly of the opinion it might be a sheep. In a dress. The Third Girl calls it Yabbit presumably because of some early confusion about rabbits (this has since been rectified). He (yes, despite the dress) was a present to the Third Girl that I instantly hated and she, of course, instantly loved.
Many much more pleasing, attractive and easier to recognise fluffy things have been employed in an attempt to lure her away from the Yabbit and all  have been scorned. The Yabbit reigns supreme and we have had to reach an uneasy truce; I sneer at him and his dress and he pointedly ignores me.

Pen Pen is quite clearly a penguin, a great big penguin that was about the same size of The Boy when he got it. As The Boy has grown, Pen Pen has shrunk a little while displaying a worrying tendency to lose his stuffing in times of stress. So every few months or so, I have to perform yet another life-saving Penguindectomy to save him.
But he's surviving, if shrinking, and has fathered a whole tribe of penguins (nine at the last count) that live on, under and around The Boy's in varying states of neglect and abandonment.
(Note to self; stop buying fluffy penguins.)

And no family would be complete without the Matriarch, and while this particular one might currently live at the bottom of a wicker hamper of jeans, she is no less loved for that.
Called Candy, she's the same age as me *deep sigh* and has had a rich, widely travelled and varied life. She survived a university education and the odd times she was employed as a drug mule (though we don't like to talk about that these days).
A no more indentifiable creature than Yabbit, I have always thought of her as Sweep (from Sooty fame) with legs and, er,  female but perhaps not.
Now nearing 50 (and looking it, unlike me OBVS), she is completely and utterly devoid of any of the cream fur that I vaguely remember from childhood, her stuffing leaks from vast wounds and her neck is only nominally attached but, well, she's still lovable. To me.

And these are our necessary bears, the things that we'll be reaching for just after children and just before photographs if ever the house bursts into flames (though I'm hoping it won't obviously).

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