Alphie the ElephantYesterday, I decided I needed a little visual help in promoting my book, Eating an Elephant: Write Your Life One Bite at a Time, so I ventured into a Toys R Us store for the first time in my life and searched until I found just what I was looking for—Alphie the Elephant.

Alphie is so soft and huggable that I couldn’t bear to put him in a plastic bag for the trip home. I carried him to the car and sat him down in the passenger seat, but I stopped short of putting the seat beat around him.

Those few moments of holding that stuffed elephant turned me back into the little girl I was who loved stuffed animals. All shapes and sizes of dogs, bears, turtles, monkeys, tigers and other creatures covered my bed and lined the shelves of my bedroom wall. I loved the looks in their little plastic eyes, the plush fur, and their squishy soft insides. My favorite was a wire hair terrier that stood tall and proud, given to me by Uncle Benny. I named the dog Oscar Popkins.

So, what about you? Did you like stuffed animals as a child? Did you have a teddy bear or some other favorite? Who gave you this beloved friend? Was it a gift for a special occasion? Set the timer for ten minutes and write about stuffed animals. Go.

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