My parents, farmers on the rain-starved plains of eastern Colorado, rarely had a crop that paid more than enough to feed the livestock and to buy a few groceries.
The rare exception was the year, 1934, when I was six; the pinto bean crop that year was a good one.
Mother, so excited she was able finally to give me a gift, woke me while it was still dark on Christmas morning. “Look, Wilma, here’s a doll for you.”
And wonder of wonder, she handed me the thrill of a doll wearing a lovely dress, and teensy socks and shoes that I could put on and off. I clutched her to my chest.
Unfortunately, after two or three days my 3-year-old brother wanted to hold her and Mother insisted I share. He slammed her down on the concrete step, breaking her head - and my heart!
She was the only doll I ever got as a child.