Today is Ellie's birthday. She is 59 years old.
What can I say about Ellie?
I got Ellie from Nana, my father's mother, at the time of my first Christmas. I was six months old.
She has been with me ever since. She has undergone exploratory surgeries to removed bits of plastic in her foot that at one time had been a squeaker. She has had one leg partially cut off in search of an appendix, then reattached. Her eyes were long, long ago replaced with buttons. Her plush body has been worn bald. Wherever I have gone, Ellie has gone with me. She has never complained about being dragged around the country or sleeping in strange places. She knows all my secrets and has kept them to herself. She has been made wet with my tears and been hugged for joy. She is the guru of the toy box. She has the Zen of toyhood down.
Every year at Christmas she gets the seat of honor under the Christmas tree.
She is Ellie, the Red Elephant. Because she's become modest about her aged body, I made her a dress. The first time I read The Velveteen Rabbit I wept because it reminded me of my Ellie. When I die, I want her cremated with me. I just can't stand the idea of her being tossed in the trash.
Happy Birthday Ellie. Do you see it? That little sly, knowing smile?
What Christmas present from your childhood to you remember most, or still have? Today is the day to honor and remember them.
Jimmy John - by Stanley and the Ten Sleepless Knights. The Twelve Days of Christmas, West Indian style. A Jimmy John is a large jug. Please note that the first present given is Jimmy John of guavaberry!