This is a REPOST from TAMARACK IDEA FACTORY, originally published on September 19, 2010.
I fell in love with this book, about a little girl (Fanny) who wants a “Connie” Doll – (they’re all the rage) but her Mom says, “absolutely no!” Which prompts Fannie to make her own doll. Then her Mom gets her a sewing machine for her birthday and she makes a bunch of clothes for her doll, Annabelle. The heroine is inventive and ingenious, despite the fact that her friends don’t understand why she doesn’t have dolls like theirs or why she got a weird sewing machine present.
I love that it teaches creativity and a mother’s belief in her daughter.
When I was young, for whatever reason, my mother believed in me. She would ask me to be creative and have me do all sorts of things for the family: from decorations for the holidays, to writing plays, to costumes. She encouraged me and helped me to believe that what I did was special and unique. The work was always flawed, but her belief in me was genuine.
Perhaps that’s why this book resonated so much with me. To tell you the truth, the story-line that I gave you was only a small part of
the book, but it was the part that I empathized with.
I think that it is so important as a parent to find out what our children are interested in, or have a natural talent for and do what we can to help them naturally succeed at it. Not by pushing them or coercing them, but allowing them to have opportunities to develop their gifts and talents and giving them support and encouragement along the way.
Interestingly enough, Holly Hobbie, the author also wrote the Toot and Puddle series, and did the Holly Hobbie series that was so popular when I was a child.
I also recommend part two, Fanny and Annabelle in which Fanny writes a book about her doll, Annabelle. Again, it’s a sweet story but even more than the story which is so cute like the first book, it is rich with creativity. I LOVE reading books like this to my children because it makes them want to create.