Little Mama

Found this photo of Anna today. I can’t help but smile remembering how many shots it took to make that years valentines. So glad I have so many photos, even the outtakes.

anna hearts


Along with the valentine photo I found these photos of Anna and her baby dolls. All were named by their mama and all have had a very love drenched life. I think about how many times Anna would come home after a weekend away with her dad and head right upstairs to make sure her babies were okay.

I would sneak up the stairs and just listen to her sweet voice. She would sing to them, change their clothes, feed them and nurture them. Watching her you knew that someday she was going to be the best mama ever.

anna's babies

Anna loved her dolls, each one was personally named by their mama. Baby Jesus was my doll when I was little and named by Anna the minute she held him in her arms. Baby Obama was named after the President. He was acquired in 2009 shortly after the inauguration was aired on TV, I really didn’t think Anna was paying attention. Baby Louie came at Christmas time and was adored by his mother. He was the perfect size for her little arms. Baby Stella came named but Anna said she would have named her Stella anyways. Anna loved all of her accessories, especially the magnetic bottle that stuck to her mouth.

baby mary

Baby Mary was Anna’s all time favorite. She arrived at our house after Anna’s very first doll, Baby Ella, disappeared out the window while driving on Highway 26. Anna was holding Baby Ella one minute and the next she was pointing out the window and Ella was nowhere to be found. It was a sad day and I wanted Anna to learn the lesson that when you throw something out the window it doesn’t necessarily come back.

My mom had other plans and immediately ordered her granddaughter another doll, exactly like Baby Ella, and it arrived a week later. Anna was thrilled thinking that Baby Ella had returned but after explaining that this doll, although it looked identical to her first, was a new baby she quickly named her Baby Mary.

Since Anna’s been in Heaven I’ve been taking care of Baby Mary. She sits on my bed all day wrapped in Anna’s favorite blanket and is dressed in the clothes her mama put on her before we went to church on October 20th. I can’t imagine her ever leaving this spot in my room. Anna would be proud that I am taking care of her baby.

I miss seeing my little girl nurture her dolls. I miss how she loved to carry them around in her old car seat, bring them to Susan’s Cafe for a snack and how she just started to sit and actually read to them. She was very excited that she could actually sound out the words of her old baby board books.

I miss seeing how this love for her dolls extended to real life babies and other children younger than herself. She could sit and hold her younger cousins for hours. She loved to “babysit” the younger siblings of her friends during playdates at the park. She adored the little ones and always did what she could to make them feel loved.

anna holden

My girl had an amazing heart and she knew how to share it.  I love her so much!



14 thoughts on “Little Mama

  1. I love her baby doll stories. Gracie was one of those little siblings Anna”babysat” and Gracie went on to name all of her dolls Anna- she impacted her that much with her love and beauty!


  2. Such a big soft and loving heart on such a tiny little girl….
    What wonderful memories.
    Love You. ❤


  3. I have such fond memories of you sharing the stories of the naming of baby Obama and baby Jesus….and of Anna mothering Madison’s babies when she visited on Fridays…Anna brought so much joy and laughter to so many of us!


  4. I love seeing these happy pictures. Thank you for sharing them. I am glad that you are able to mother Baby Mary for her, in just the way she would.


  5. Such wonderful memories I have of Anna and her babies. She loved and nutured her babies just like you did when you were her age. This is why when you were blessed with being Anna’s mom you did it with such happiness and grace. I must admit, as your mother I was apprehensive about you being alone and so far away from family, but all you really ever needed was each other. It is a beautiful love story that continues as you share your love of your girls. I am so poud to be your mother. I love you.


  6. Those dolls are very lucky to have a mama like Anna, as is Anna to have a mama like you. ‘Baby Obama’?! lol


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