A Very Felix Christmas


Card not in my collection


Pam’s Pictorama Photo Post: Christmas is hard on our heels and how better to roll up our sleeves than these two amazing photos of epic toy hauls under a glittering tinsel-wrapped Christmas tree? (That’s back when tinsel had some heft and you would reuse it each year – and the cat always wanted to eat it, but that is true of tinsel today too.) Unjust as life can be at times, I was beat out for one of these cards on eBay so they have now gone their separate ways after all these years and I am pleased that at least this electronic record keeps them united. Admittedly, I put a slightly higher bid on the one I purchased as Felix plays a larger role, and I thought the composition was marginally better.

At first I thought that these were two different children and even that one might be a boy, but looking at them for a bit I have decided that it is the same little girl in both. The bonanza of toys has been arranged differently and as I mentioned, Felix gets more of a close up portrait shot in mine. The little girl also seems more engaged with her loot in my photo too. Kim speculated that the toys and scene are all props which is sort of heartbreaking if true. How could they possibly plunk a child down among all that and then yank her away? Oh no! Talk about childhood trauma. I prefer to believe that these were taken post gift opening at home.

I believe our man here is a Schuco Yes No Felix and you could move his tail and his arms (and maybe head?) would move. I came close to purchasing one earlier this year, although he no longer has his movement. (A toy-minded friend told me that it was silly not to buy him since he personally hadn’t moved the arms on his Yes No Felix in years and I was unlikely to miss it.) Perhaps I will find him under my tree one day.

The patina of photo tricks notwithstanding, the sense of childhood wonder on Christmas morning is well captured. Although my memories of childhood Christmas tend to blend together a bit, certain bits and pieces of memories do stand out – my first bike one year (pink and white with a basket), a house for Barbie another, the acquisition of Squeaky the stuffed dog. (I cover some of this in my prior posts found at A Girl and Her Toys and Felix on an Outing.) While my parents have always been big on reading (I swear my younger brother was so frustrated by how much reading went on in our house that as a pre-schooler he memorized the books read to him in a form of faux-reading, and then immediately mastered the skill upon entering school; he was reading the New York Times in no time) so books were always a part of Christmas. However, my folks were not overly intellectual about toys and were easily maneuvered into purchasing us all sorts of indulgent toys of the day. I had an Easy Bake oven and my Barbies lead a very upper middle class life with clothes, homes and cars. They dated GI Joe as well as Ken and a strange doctor doll. And of course there were stuffed animals – as recently examined in Toy Cat. We had racing cars and trains – even before Edward was born. My father did not discriminate. All this to say, I am not someone who collects toys because she was deprived as a child.

Here I am with Squeaky, a photo I have shown before. Although I remember my father taking photos every Christmas morning, I do not have any others at hand. A Merry Christmas to all and let the Christmas toys begin! I know I am hoping for a certain Felix toy this Christmas myself…


A very little Pam and Squeaky the Dog on Christmas morning, Pams-Pictorama.com


Happy Hen


Wonderful chicken toy can be purchased here!

Pam’s Pictorama Photo Post: (Christmas shopping tip included!) As I have said occasionally in prior posts, sometimes it is hard to explain why a given photo attracts me, but when I see them I have to have ’em if at all possible. This photo postcard of a chicken is one of those. It was never used, no clue as to when it was made or why – or why it was kept pristine all these years. What a perfect looking little hen! Proudly perched on this cage. There’s just something very right about it. Reminds me of stories my mother has told me of people she who keep them as pets – yes, in the house. Evidently they are smarter and more charming as a pet then you might think – and live longer. Regardless of whether or not we want to live with one in our tiny Manhattan abode, there is something undeniably proud and perfect about this chicken. Makes me pleased to know I am a vegetarian.

This put me in mind of several years ago when I first purchased a stunning stuffed beaver toy made by the Hansa toy company. I don’t remember how the beaver originally came to my attention, but it was clearly a very exquisitely made toy. I was deeply interested in beavers and scooped it up. Once I saw how beautiful it was I located the toy company online – a stuffed animal paradise. Following in the tradition of early Steiff, Dean’s, and Chad Valley there is beautiful construction, but also a look of intelligence and life in some of these toys – they have knowing eyes. They tackle animals from the everyday and domestic to the exotic – even extinct.  Each is perfectly executed – need a stuff wombat, flying squirrel or nice executed life-size German Shepard? These are your people. This hen just seemed extraordinary and Kim purchased her for me. She has a prime spot in our living room. (A quick look on the site today left me imagining a young Pam begging for a 40 inch ride-on reindeer, on sale for $591.92, or life-size buffalo for $2,495! Mom, Dad, look! Free shipping!)

So during this holiday season, I leave you with this top notch helpful hint for that hard to buy for person on your list.