Jack of Many Trades

Rescuing the Princess

Originally posted: 2014-06-04

[caption id="attachment_6353" align="alignright" width="231"]Toddler Ariel just before being accepted into her new home Toddler Ariel just before being accepted into her new home[/caption]

Something must be in the air - Lupa has written a number of posts lately about the value of scavenging, and just the other day there was a thread on pagan shopping ethics. Between the two, I've been thinking about her posts in the context of my own work.

I've talked about the whole Secondhand Paganism gig before, mostly in the context of what how I get things for my altar, but Lupa's posts have helped me get into focus the fact that it's more than just cost-savings or even Mara's opinions on big name capitalism.

I think I have a stronger animist component to my beliefs than I originally realized, especially when it comes to certain things like toys. I've always felt bad for the toys that turn up at thrift stores, especially the ones who are in bad shape and unlikely to find new homes. I've started collecting certain dolls, mostly secondhand because they're much more affordable, and that made me a lot more aware of the toys I was passing.

The Ariel shown above was actually a freebie at a yard sale I visited the other weekend. Her hair was a tangled rat's nest and her dress has seen better days, but otherwise she was in perfect shape... so she became the first doll I tried the Downy Dunk on.

In case you have a doll whose synthetic hair needs detangling, the way the process works is pretty simple. You mix half a capful of Downy with 4 cups of water. You put the doll in so her hair is all underwater and let her soak for about ten minutes. Then pull her out and brush her hair with a sturdy brush, ideally a wig brush. When you're done, wring out the excess and let her dry.

Once I figured out what I was doing, the process went very simply, and Ariel was deemed a successful test. Today my spouse took her along to playgroup and Ariel went home with a young boy I'm told was extremely excited.

I don't do it for him. I do it for the toys. But I'll admit that hearing it made me feel a little better, too.