It’s close enough to Christmas that I feel like I can share this story without being one of those people who listen to Christmas music all year and decorate their homes for Christmas before Thanksgiving. This is the story of my Barbie Dream House–both of them.
Santa Claus brought us three things and some small stuff. Well into parenting myself, I can still recall some of the things my sister and I received on Christmas mornings past. And, really didn’t think about the things, as small children, we asked for and did not receive. We had two sets of grandparents and were the only grandchildren on my father’s side of the family–Christmas Day at our house was great fun!
A year before His Lordship and I married and just before Christmas, my parents took my sister and me off to Asheville and the Grove Park Inn. We enjoyed a car trip that didn’t involve dividing the backseat in half and fighting. Unbeknownst to my sister and me, our mother steered the conversation to Christmases past in hopes of getting us to remember certain memories that might help her order photos in a photo album that was to be a special gift for us that year. Somehow, I remembered a toy that I had always wanted, but never received. You guessed it. My Barbie Dream House.
I had wanted the Barbie Dream House. I had coveted a friend’s Barbie Dream House. I asked Santa for the Barbie Dream House. And, it wasn’t under the tree. And, it only took 20 years for me to notice I didn’t get it.
So, I asked the question any self-respecting 24 year old woman would ask her parents. “Why didn’t I get the Barbie Dream House?” What did I do wrong?”
At the mention of the words Barbie Dream House, my father launched into a tirade of profanity I had not heard in years. “That blankety blank Barbie thing. I stayed up half the blankety blank night trying to put that blankety blank thing together. Blankety blank, that piece wasn’t anywhere in that box.”
Gentle Readers need to remember that 40 years ago, there was no Amazon Prime. In rural Georgia, a broken toy two days before Christmas meant dashed hopes for little believers. I don’t know what my parents did that year to make up for the broken Barbie Dream House, but I never missed it. Don’t remember even asking about it.
I have a Barbie Dream House here in Athens. A house I’ve wanted more and more with each drive by. I have wanted to buy that house for years. And, it’s on the market. I almost wrecked the car on Halloween when I saw the sign in the yard.
Don’t get excited. His Lordship and I aren’t going anywhere. We have new neighbors across the street that are super fun and I’m finally getting to some projects in our own house. This isn’t the right time. But, I am going to see the Barbie Dream House. I’m going in it and am going to close my eyes and figure out where all my imaginary furniture can go. Then, I’m going to figure out how to remodel the kitchen and where my Wolf range will go in my imaginary kitchen. Then, I’m going to look in the bedrooms and think how I can reconfigure them and where my imaginary chandelier will hang in my imaginary closet.
And, then I’m coming home. And, I might put the Barbie Dream House on my Christmas list this year. Because, if you still believe in Santa, he will come. And, if you’d like to see the inside of your Barbie Dream House, give me a call. You and Santa can work on the rest.