Saturday, August 17, 2013

Celebrating Childhood Memories with the Little Brother

My little brother, Jimmy, is probably my favorite person in the whole world.  While growing up, he was known as Bucky, Bucket, Bucket of Fudge, Chub Chub (in reference to his chubby cheeks as a baby), and a multitude of other names. 

After not seeing him for over a year, I was pumped to fly home to Wisconsin, even for just four days.  My brother is a very quiet guy, who is very funny, but also somewhat shy.  However, once you know Bucky, you have one of the greatest friends a person could ask for.  Although he's my little brother he is now significantly taller than I am and has definitely been there to coach me through heartaches.  I often think that some very wise person was reincarnated as him because he is so wise beyond his years.

When Jimmy was a little kid, we went on a trip to Chicago.  While on the train, he realized he left his trusty companion, Mr. Bear behind.  You would have thought that this little boy had neglected his own child.  He was completely distraught and my dad came up with an idea.  When we got to the hotel, my dad took hand towels, hair ties, and rubberbands and created a human-like figure which we dubbed Towel Buddy.  Of course, this looked nothing like the bear he toted around but my brother was and has always been a caring person.  At that young age, he was disappointed at not having Mr. Bear but could appreciate that our dad took the time to fashion a towel friend for him.  He was thrilled and would ensure that Towel Buddy was safely tucked into bed or placed on the table before we would leave.  He became an excellent substitute for his furry friend.  Towel Buddy has become one of our most favorite stories to tell at family gatherings.

When I went back home to visit, we were reminiscing on childhood memories when Towel Buddy came up.  While in Chicago, we stopped at a Build-a-Bear and decided to recreate our Towel Buddy friend.  At 15 and 23, I'm sure the Build-a-Bear associate we were working with was incredibly confused, but we had a ton of fun. 

We picked out a white suit, complete with bow tie, and dubbed him Mr. Towel Buddy.  He flew home to Montana with me.  It seems juvenile and silly, I know, but Towel Buddy and the newly created Mr. Towel Buddy symbolize our childhood.  To us, they represent having a friend when you've seemed to left them behind or you feel alone.  Although Mr. Towel Buddy currently resides on a shelf in one of my spare bedrooms, I know it's something that my future children will definitely appreciate as a bond between me and Bucky.

If you liked this post, share it with others! If you feel particularly moved by it, leave a comment because I love feedback and discussion. Social media links are provided below and thanks for reading!
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  1. I worked at a Build-A-Bear for a few years and loved when people came in with such special stories! I've been waiting for this post since I saw your last picture of the bear - I had a feeling he was a Build-A-Bear and had to hear the story :-) Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks for leaving a comment! Clearly I should have made this bear with you ;) Even though I'm a real "adult" now, I still love making Build-a-Bears for special occasions or just something important and memorable for me. I think the best part is that my brother, who is at that age where you're too cool for everything, was willing to make this with me :)

  3. Super cute! I think Build a Bear is adorable and how fun for your and your brother to go!


  4. So, so cute! What a special bond you have with your brother! This was a great story. Thanks for sharing, Kim!

  5. I think Build-a-Bear is so cute! They've started leaning more towards cartoonish stuffed animals, which I think the classic teddy bear look will always outweigh the bears dedicated to pop stars.

  6. Thanks Jessica! My brother is an amazing person and I've been really blessed to have him as a sibling :)