Reprinted from the May 1994 issue
Little girls like to imitate their mommies, and play house with their dolls. The Editor was greatly alarmed one day when she realized that little girls no longer knew how to play (the Editor was probably babysitting at the time). So this instructional piece was written to help any little girl out there who does not have a clue about how to play dolls!
First of all, you will need a baby doll. I would not recommend that you get one that does something, it proves rather useless in real play. You will need one that is all plastic or all rubber, because they are really easy to clean if you get them dirty or if you want to give them a bath. You could also use a doll with a cloth body, if you do not intend to bathe it or get it wet. Try to find a doll that will be easy for your mother or grandmother to make clothes for.
Dolly can only be taken outside if it is good, and will sit still when you tell it to, and not try to climb out of the carriage and climb trees or play in mud puddles. Here is a typical day with dolly:
1. When dolly awakes, pick it up gently and kiss and cuddle and coo. Then feed it. If it is a small baby, then you feed it with disappearing milk from a bottle. If it is a bigger baby, you feed it baby food or applesauce. I recommend INVISIBLE brand baby food. It comes in a pretty jar.
After dolly is finished, you fold a blanket or towel neatly and put it over your shoulder, and burp the baby. This is done by patting baby doll on the back but not so hard that you knock the stuffing out of it! Then you put the baby down, and wash the dishes. Dry them with a towel and stack them neatly in their shelf. You must make sure to do this when dolly is watching, because if you didn't wash the dishes or put them away, your baby will not learn to put its toys away and the whole nursery will be a mess!
After all this is done, make the baby's bed. Then dress the baby in a warm outfit and put it in the carriage for a morning walk. Make sure to tuck in some extra blankets.
2. Bring the baby doll inside, and lay it on the floor and play with it. DO NOT BOUNCE THE BABY ON ITS HEAD! It is extremely harmful. It will make the baby doll very dizzy! Play gently with it, then put it in its cradle and set the mobile in motion. A mobile can be made with a paper plate, some yarn, and pretty paper shapes. Ask your mother to show you how. A mobile is extremely useful during baby's naptime. While dolly is napping, you can clean the house.
3. When the baby wakes up, it is time to change its diaper. If you have a rubber doll, use baby powder. If you have a cloth doll, they are extra sensitive so I would recommend using EMPTY BOTTLE brand baby powder and baby oils. You may give the baby a bath, if it is rubber, but DO NOT GET THE DOLL'S HAIR WET! If you do, you will regret it forever. Use a soft washcloth to wash the baby. If you have a cloth doll, use a cardboard bathtub and no water. Use EMPTY BOTTLE brand soap. Now get the baby out and dry it gently with a towel, and dress it.
4. Now put dolly in its playpen while you cook dinner. Let it have a soft toy to play with. Then feed it a dinner of INVISIBLE brand vegetables. After dinner you read dolly a story or sing it a song until it falls asleep. Then you gently lay it in its cradle and say goodnight.