Thursday, March 10, 2011
Funky and fabulous!!! (picture heavy post)
About two months after Rick passed away, I was at this crop that a friend of mine had convinced me I should attend. I think she was trying to get me out of the house and also where she could keep an eye on me, because she was worried about me. So, I reluctantly agreed to go. I'm glad that I did. I met a sweet bunch of ladies who were so compassionate and understanding of my teary eyes and rather withdrawn behavior (can you imagine it...ME, not talking much?!?). One of the ladies had recently lost her father and she was talking about memorial bears. I had seen them before, but I guess grief had fogged my brain and I wasn't thinking of them. That's a bit shocking, since I collect bears and other animals. I have a huge collection of Steiff, Hermann, artist and other bears (not to mention the hedgehogs, tigers, cats, horses, dogs, birds, etc).
Once I got home, I went to my trusty pal Google and started checking out sites for memorial bears. I found Tammy Bears and I am so glad that I did. All of her bears are so unique, full of character, and made with such thought and care. Unfortunately, I just could not decide what articles of clothing I wanted to use for my own special Rick bear. It took me forever (over a year!), but I finally figured it out. You see, Rick used to wear this bomber jacket everywhere. As soon as it cooled down even a little, he was in that thing. He even had various wool scarves to wear with it. While I could not fathom cutting up his bomber jacket, I figured I could leave one scarf hanging with it, and send the rest off to Tammy, so that's just what I did.
I told Tammy that I love funky bears that are different than anything else. Then I told her what a prankster Rick was, and how he was always up to something mischievous. I even sent her a picture of him in the process of pulling a prank on one of his buddies in Iraq. I happened to send the bear request right at the height of her Christmas rush. Knowing that, I told her not to hurry and that if I had the bear by my birthday in March, I'd be happy. Tammy made it happen. He arrived today. He's fun, he's funky, he looks a little curious and a little serious, too. I think he's waiting til I fall asleep to start his next prank, but he sure looks like he's plotting it now.
Now, just look at him. Isn't he cute? He's got those ears off to the side that always make bears look so curious (at least, I think so), long, soft "fur", and even leather paw pads that remind me of Rick's bomber jacket.
The little heart on his chest is embroidered with a number that was one of our little private things we signed in our cards and notes to each other. His body is made from Rick's scarves.
As Rick would tell me, he was calling my name from inside that box. That's what he used to say when I would see a bear I wanted in the store. He'd tell me that bear was calling my name. This one definitely calls for me. In fact, I think he's screaming my name pretty loudly.
I hope you never have need of a memorial bear, but if you do, please visit Tammy. Read her inspirational story, check out her amazing work, and support a fabulous artist. And if you're not a bear person, she makes dogs, too. Some of the dogs she's made look so realistic that I figure they might even bark. Even if you don't want a memorial bear and you just want that special bear that's handmade just for you, you might want to give her a call.
Now I've got a fabulous bear to make me smile every time I lay eyes on him, and to make me remember how Rick always pushed me to get any animal I wanted for my collection. Thanks, Tammy. You made my day. Heck, probably a lot longer than just a day!