It all started 33 years ago, when I asked (well, actually begged) for a Pink & Pretty Barbie. I was three years old and knew exactly what I wanted. My mother had no way of knowing I was not your average fickle little girl. I held true to my heart’s desire and every year around Christmas my desire for a Pink & Pretty Barbie never waned.
My undying Christmas wish has even been documented on this blog on multiple occasions, (here, here, and here). Never mind that I’m in my mid-thirties and don’t really play with Barbie dolls anymore. I do, however, collect Barbie dolls, (see The Barbie Shelf) and my collection will never be complete without one Pink & Pretty Barbie.
As the years (and years and years …) went by I never gave up hope, even though the situation was looking bleak. Over the last few years, the collector’s market has heavily favored play dolls from the 80s. Dolls like Crystal Barbie and Peaches n’ Cream Barbie started to soar in price as collectors sought to regain childhood memories.
Pink & Pretty Barbie fell into the same ranks sending her price through the roof, especially if she was still in her box. She was going for as much as $250. Yikes! I would’ve seriously been mad if my mother or anyone else spent that kind of money on a gift for me.
Still, I kept wishing. I had to believe that one day Pink & Pretty Barbie would find her way to me. Somewhere out there she was sitting on a shelf or inside the closet of a person who no longer wanted her. I should mention that this amount of wishing over such a long time takes an extreme amount of faith and persistence.
This year, a Christmas present wrapped in pink and white polka dots had my name on it. I wanted it to be her so much, but I was too afraid to dare to believe that Pink & Pretty Barbie could really be inside that polka dot box. I ripped open the paper and found ….
PINK & PRETTY BARBIE!!!!!
I’m pretty sure I squealed, jumped up and down, and hugged her. Then, I hugged my mother, who quite possibly gave me the most perfect Christmas gift ever. Aside from the doll itself, the fact that it came from my mother makes it all the more meaningful. She never forgot and had been looking for this doll for as long as I’ve been wishing for her.
My Pink & Pretty Barbie is pretty amazing. She’s never been removed from her box. The wire twist-ties and plastic fasteners are still factory mint. The box has one dent and one tear, but is still in pretty great shape – the plastic front is still crystal clear (no yellowing), and the top and bottom flaps stay closed. Not bad for a 33 year old box! However, the best part of the box is that fact that it has an original price sticker of $10.60.
I cleared out a space in my curio cabinet where Pink & Pretty Barbie can sit in the front. In many ways, it is surreal that she is sitting on my shelf. Sometimes I touch the box just to make sure she’s real and not just a figment of my imagination.
It’s funny how one little thing can mean so much. To most people, she is an old doll that isn’t even that pretty, but to me she is a reflection of my childhood and an incredibly special and thoughtful gift from a mother I love very much.
– – –