The Great Stuffed Animal Contest

My husband and I are quite competitive. Typically, our competitions are about goofy things: fastest washing dishes, first to finish a came, loudest burp, etc. Our latest competition was about whose stuffed animal choice would become Hell’s favorite.

Most people had that one stuffed animal that was sacred to us as a child. Some people still have that stuffed animal (yes, Scampurr will be buried with me). It is what we played with, cried with, and often had taken for random by evil siblings. It is an essential aspect of childhood.

My husband picked up a random stuffed bear. Of course, it is cute; however, I feel like it is not sacred stuffed animal material. It is too stiff and has no character. He did have the time advantage. He gave her the bear a few weeks prior to me even finding one I thought was good enough.

Seeing his choice inspired me. I created a list of essentials for a sacred childhood stuffed animal. Am I over thinking this? Yep.

  1. It has to be medium size. No larger than 2 feet tall. I think 1.5 feet is a good height. This would make it large enough to cuddle and cry with. I felt if it was too small it would just get swallowed during hugging cries, and too big would not fit on her bed.
  2. The color must be bright. A pastel or white would look gross after a few years. Even frequent washes don’t hold back the unavoidable color warping of time. Bright colors would fade better.
  3. The fabric and stitching must be heavy but not too stiff. I want her to be able to carry this stuffed animal for the rest of her life. It needs to last. None of those cheap claw stuffed animals that fall apart after one washing.
  4. There can be no external bows or flourishes. These will fall off, and if they are accidentally ripped off could effect the integrity of the animal’s stitching.
  5. The animal in question should be a classic animal: bear, cat, rabbit, etc. No snakes, hippos, or anything exotic.

After determining the requirements for her sacred stuffed animal, I went to four or five different stores, online shopping was too risky. Finally, at a Hallmark store of all places, I found the perfect animal.

It is a orange stripped cat. Yes, it has a bow; however, the bow is not sewn into the seams of the actual animal. It will fall off eventually, but not effect the integrity of the animal. It is sturdy, yet huggable.

I was so excited when I found it. I rushed home knowing I had won. Hell would love it, and my husband would have to swim his own tears of defeat. Win Win. I showed it to her. She reached for it, put a paw in her mouth, and dropped it. She went back to playing with her teething beads.

Every chance I got for the week, I would give it to her. She would take it then drop it. At first, I figured she was too young. Surely, in a few months Hell and the cat would be bonded. Then she got a hold of an ugly old stuffed animal my mother sent her. I had stashed the stuffed animal after washing it, because it was some random brown bird my mother had picked up from a thrift store somewhere.

It is the ugliest thing in my house, and Hell will not be without it.

My husband and I both have to swim in the tears of defeat. Hell has spoken, not literally. She is already defying logic. Maybe I should have pretended that I hated the cat. Hmm. For now, I will just admire her hipster choice in sacred stuffed animals. She is already way cooler than me.





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