Friday evening, I took Larkspur and Beatrix to a dress rehearsal of The Nutcracker. Their friend, Istra, was a mouse in the performance and we were excited to see her. We ended up arriving about an hour and a half earlier than necessary, but thankfully I had supplies to start a new knitting project with me. I cast on a little red cardigan. December is oftentimes a season of doll clothes knitting for me, though I hadn’t anticipated it this year.
Last month, my dear friend, Grace, mentioned that for the first time in many years she was making a handful of dolls to sell, and could I possibly help get the word out? I’ve long hoped for one of Grace’s handmade dolls for my girls and was sad that it likely wouldn’t happen, so when she told me this news I had to work hard to play it cool. Yes, I want one! Yes, I’ll help! Of course, of course!
Then, about a week ago, she sent over a photo of the doll I named Bridget. My girls and I crowded around my phone squealing with excitement. And I knew that it was time to start knitting doll clothes because this was really happening! Grace put Bridget in the mail and told us that she was scheduled to arrive on Monday.
Sunday afternoon, a few innocent snowflakes started to fall. We were all charmed, December snow not being a common occurrence in our part of Virginia. The forecast said an inch or two, but we weren’t counting on it. It probably wasn’t going to stick anyway. We thought back to the snow predicted the previous week that never materialized. But these innocent flakes started building up momentum, and it appeared that the forecast might be wrong again, but in the opposite direction. Sure enough, the weather site now said we could expect 3-6 inches. We ended up with close to six. You can imagine that the children were overjoyed. The house descended into further chaos as snow pants and gloves were dug out of basement bins and the endless trips in and out of the cold by a houseful of children began. My current laundry situation is staggering.
But more worrisome than the laundry was the absence of mail on Monday. Where was Bridget?
Tuesday morning, while I was out taking care of goats and chickens in the snow, the mail carrier pulled down the driveway uncharacteristically early. Our mail usually arrives in the evening. I breathed a sigh of relief as I saw my children carrying packages into the house. But then the report came, “There wasn’t a package from Grace! The mail lady says she will be back later if there is more mail for us, but her truck was too full to fit anything else this trip.”
I pulled up the tracking number, and according to the post office website, “action was required.” I needed to drive to our main branch and pick up the doll myself. I texted Grace and told her I was heading to pick Bridget up, and I would let her know as soon as I got her. I arrived at the post office in time to listen to a woman ahead of me give the poor guy at the counter a really hard time because she hadn’t gotten mail on Monday and she was convinced that it was only her and that they were holding her mail hostage, or something along those lines. That last part is a bit of an exaggeration, but I did feel really bad for the guy who was trying to explain that things just got held up because of the snow. I eventually piped up that we didn’t get mail either, that it wasn’t only her. “My doll didn’t arrive!” I told her. No, just kidding, I didn’t say that. I try not to come across as crazy in public. She went on her way, and I eagerly handed the man my tracking number, telling him that I was there to pick up a package. He indicated that I likely couldn’t pick it up, that he would never be able to find it, “back there,” but he would go look. What??? I texted Grace again, telling her that I was practically shaking with nerves. Where was Bridget? The man returned to tell me there was no way he could find the package, that there was just too much mail, but that my mail carrier was there and she would be bringing us more mail later that day. I nodded in resigned understanding, sighed, and headed home. The situation couldn’t be helped, there was no one to blame, and nothing to do but wait.
So, there we sat on Tuesday night, well after dark, reading library books about Christmas on the couch when I saw headlights coming down the driveway. The mail!!! Amongst a few other things, there was a priority mail box from Grace. And inside was Bridget, and she’s perfect. And her sweater fits. Now she just has to wait patiently on a shelf in my closet for Christmas, when we will surprise Mabel with the doll I didn’t think she’d have, the doll that she’s honestly not quite old enough for, but I had to take the opportunity while I could! We may never have another chance at such a treasure of a doll!
**Grace made seven dolls to offer in her shop, and she is offering a few other things such as beautiful beeswax nativities. She asked me to share a coupon code with all of you. You can receive 10% off your order with the code GINNY10 through January 1st. There is still time to receive your order in time for Christmas if you are in the U.S.**