Sunday, August 13, 2006

in which I admit to harboring lots of licensed merch (or, a post in blue and orange)

This morning Iris and I went to the playground, then to a nearby café, where we ran into our friend Lois and got to share a lovely lunch with her. Lois is a terrific writer and an inspiring craftstress. When we got home, I told Iris, "I want to show you something special," and I led her upstairs to my bedroom where this blue bunny resides.

He's the only one of the random toys J and I had before we had Iris that has not been relinquished to her. Lois made him several years ago, and I hugged myself with lucky glee when I won him in the Gist Street raffle.

After we talked about how Lois made the blue bunny (and clarified once more that Iris may visit and hug him, but he is Mama's blue bunny), she said, "I want show you something special. C'mon, Mama," and led me into her room. There she picked up one of her stuffed animals, a white cartoon rabbit in an orange shirt, and carried it back to the blue bunny.

"See?" she said. "They are same! White rabbit and boo rabbit!"

You won’t believe how many things Iris has with this little white rabbit on them. My stepmother has been piling it on since before Iris was born, apparently having assigned her to be Iris' personal cartoon mascot. In the US, she’s called

But in Holland, where most if not all this swag came from, she’s

So that’s what we call her, though I suspect we butcher the pronunciation. The storybook actually touches some raw nerve in Iris. When we read it to her, she weeps uncontrollably, then begs us to read it over and over until she spirals into a heartbroken sobfest, so we’ve had to put both versions away.

But that’s okay because we have plenty more, non-weep-inducing Nijntje in our lives. This is just a sampling:

iris' wonderful world of nijntje, originally uploaded by aoneko.

My stepmother also gave us this by Dick Bruna, Nijntje’s creator:

Aside from the obvious perfection of the title, it is a wonderful little book. The subtitle seems to mean "a book without words," and it is comprised entirely of pictures which tell the story of a girl who makes her friends happy by sharing her toys (including a rabbit Iris recognized immediately as Nijntje – coincidence or a little bit of product placement on Dick Bruna's part, hmm?). So great for non-scripted, interactive storytelling.

Does Miffy/Nijntje have a TV show? We know her only by the gifts we've received.


Blogger Ali said...

I love Miffy, and I'm sure she doesn't count as nasty branded merchandise because she's vintage!

(Loved your post about the pants!)

5:16 PM  
Blogger shizzknits said...

Yup, there's a Miffy tv show on one of the kid channels. It's either Sprout or Noggin...most likely NOggin. We watch it sometimes.

Love all the colors and the swag. So cute.

10:53 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home