My own Raggedy Ann story

In today’s DYK, Daniel Friedman writes about the 95th anniversary of the Raggedy Ann doll. When we first learned about the occasion, I told him that I still have a hand-sewn Raggedy Ann doll, a gift from my mother’s maternal grandmother.

I brought my doll to the office so he could photograph it. As soon as I walked into the art department, Art Director Michelle-Renee Adams pointed out something that never registered in all the years I’ve had my Raggedy Ann.

“She has blonde hair!” Michelle said, her artist’s eye immediately seeing the obvious. Before that moment, it had never dawned on me that “Nanny” had created a Raggedy Ann to look just like me.

She also created an exact replica of the dress. My mom still kicks herself for the fact that she didn’t save it. (My family moved a dozen times while I was growing up. Who could blame her?) But she did make sure that I was wearing it for a rare, professionally photographed portrait.

Mom, who lives in Green Valley, Ariz., was in Phoenix last weekend. I told her what I’d finally realized about my Raggedy Ann and she, too, was surprised and touched.

Why didn’t we notice the significance of that yellow yarn hair before? Maybe we were too distracted by a sense of awe at the careful thought and meticulous stitches that went into creating this special gift. Regardless, almost 50 years later, we both sensed Nanny wrapping us in her love once again.

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