Paper Dolls At Christmas Time


Little Miss Christmas and Holly Belle Clothes

No matter how old I have become, how sophisticated, liberated, or technically astute, there comes a moment during Christmas when I miss my mother. Especially, the little girl will need her that remains apart of who I have become. I’m never sure when my tears will give that fact away. Perhaps in hearing a favorite Christmas song, or seeing the look that passes between a small child and her parents that are sitting in the pew in front of me at Church. Sometimes it happens when I reach for a piece of my mother’s china to set a pretty table. Today, it happened when I found Christmas paper dolls on Pinterest. (I loved paper dolls as a child. Now I collect them on a paper doll Pinterest board.)


As grown up as I have become, I can close my eyes, and remember Christmas on Asbury Avenue in Evanston, IL. There I can find my father setting up the Christmas tree in the music room, the packages piling up beneath the tree since his own childhood Christmas’ were meager and he always over shopped at Christmas.

I will find my mother in the breakfast room where she will read to me if I bring her one of my Christmas books. All of us have within us the memories of Christmas’ past. The crunch of snow beneath our feet, the taste of egg nog, of peppermint ice cream that we still love. a9c1b4c8b923245bb34d4780cd297561We can remember the beauty of the first Nutcracker Ballet we saw, or snuggling close to our mother’s warm fur coat. Christmas dresses and new Mary Jane black shoes are still accessible. It is allusive, having to squeeze our eyes tight, to find the right image that might give us back that time when all was well, merry and bright. As a writer, I look for ways to give others a new language that will help them remember their life through these reflections….this time about Christmas paper dolls.


About Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin grew up in Evanston, IL. and is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. She is an author of two novels: The Greening of a Heart and Facing East. She lives, writes and gardens in NC. Visit her:
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6 Responses to Paper Dolls At Christmas Time

  1. johnvic8 says:

    A sweet, sweet picture of your past you painted so well. I still think of gumdrops strung on a miniature tree. Have a blessed Christmas.

  2. noelleg44 says:

    What a lovely picture you painted for us with your words! And I LOVED paper dolls when I was little. Merry Christmas, Stepheny!

  3. Ah, this is lovely Stepheny

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