Eleanor has half a dozen baby dolls, and a bin chock full of stuffed animals.
But what does she play with instead?
The bear started out life as one of those backpack-with-baby-leash things, used to ease my mind during that early toddler stage when outings meant the constant danger of twins darting in opposite directions. Instead of arms and legs, the bear has woven straps and plastic buckles. Eleanor can tell the difference between her bear and Henry’s identical one, because hers “has a happy face.” The bear’s name has evolved from Baby Bear Backpack to Baby Bear to Teddy.
Teddy gets tucked in every night with his special “circle blanket.” Teddy is currently sleeping in a doll crib pulled up right next to Eleanor’s bed. Teddy is brought along on nearly every trip, and errands involve Eleanor/Mom negotiations on whether Teddy comes into Target with us or stays in the van. Teddy was sent with Daddy and Henry to the barber shop (“because Teddy is a boy”) and gets pulled in the wagon when we walk the dog.
Teddy plays outside and gets tricycle rides and gets his back pocket turned inside out and chewed on. Teddy sits on the potty chair when Eleanor goes to the bathroom. Teddy gets pushed around in a doll stroller and sits in a doll highchair at breakfast. Teddy is watched over by Mom while Eleanor is in preschool.
Teddy is perhaps the weirdest security object ever (seriously, Eleanor, it’s a BACKPACK), but our girl loves her bear, so Teddy is part of our family.