About Me

I started this blog as a celebration of some of the things I enjoy most. Some may find it odd that at thirty-four years of age, I have a blog about dolls and Disney characters. I've gotten some strange looks even when talking about it to some of my family and friends. That's okay, maybe I am a little bit odd. The original "Beast's Belle" was too, you know. :)

I've loved dolls for as long as I can remember, whether they were Barbies or AG dolls. I fell in love with every Disney movie that came out during my childhood, from "The Rescuers Down Under" and "The Little Mermaid" all the way up thru "The Lion King". It was always a big part of who I was, but as my elementary years ended and junior high began, it was harder and harder to share this with others. Everyone else was growing up too fast. No time for Barbies...they were moving on to lipstick and nylons!  

As a young tween, I let the comments and opinions of others influence me so much that I stopped playing with dolls and packed them away. Junior highers aren't always the most sensitive of human beings, and I was slightly over-sensitive, to put it mildly. :}

High school was slightly better than junior high, but not much. I was one of those people who would call around to all of the different McDonald's restaurants in town to see which Disney or Pixar toys they had in their Happy Meals that week, determined to get the whole collection. But I died of embarrassment if anyone from school saw me with a Happy Meal. It didn't matter if I knew them personally or not.

Then came college, and suddenly, it was okay to still be into toys. I think I've related this in a blog post before, but my second year of college was the "Disney Princess" year. There were five girls living in the dorms (it was a small college), and I used to go visit them every day. We assigned a Disney Princess character to each of us and finished out the year with a Princess Party with all of the trimmings. That was the year that I realized that "Beauty and the Beast" had been my favorite all along. I brought my old Beauty and the Beast dolls out of storage and started collecting things from the movie. My college friends taught me it was okay to be a kid, even when you were growing up on the outside.

My love of American Girl and other 18" play dolls comes from seeing the beautiful dolls at our school book fairs in the school library (and let's not forget those tantalizing Pleasant Company magazines that came in the mail). I was about ten or eleven when Felicity came out, and I was hooked. I was a major horse lover at that stage in my life, so I loved reading about Felicity and Penny. I wanted a Felicity doll more than anything, but it was never a financial possibility for my parents.

So I guess in some ways I'm reliving my childhood. Collecting dolls, toys, and Beauty and the Beast stuff brings back all of those special memories from when I was a girl. It's so wonderful having girls of my own, too. Now I get to share all of these things with them (and not look completely weird to everyone around me). :)

What other things should you know about me? I'm happily married to my high school sweetheart. I have three beautiful girls that fill my life with joy...and a lot of stress and frustration at times, too. Just being honest here. :) I will say that they are 100% worth it, though. :)

I'm a Bible-believing Christian, saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone...which is a good thing, because I royally mess things up on my own. I have a wonderful church family that I've been a part of since I was a little girl.

I love to sing. Most of the time, I sing at church on Sundays, although I've also sung at weddings and funerals as well. My dream would be to sing on a big stage, either at a community theater, or anywhere, just once...just to experience it. :) I love singing hymns and songs about the Lord. I also love singing Broadway and Disney songs, as well as songs from Rogers and Hammerstein musicals.

Okay, I guess that's enough babbling for now. Wow, if you made it all the way through this page, I applaud you for your perseverance! :) To sum up, I'm a thirty-four-year-old wife and mom who NEVER GREW UP. :)

37 comments:

beachbabydoll1 said...

Thank you so much for your testimony! It's so good to hear real stories of real people being saved by Christ's Grace. Me too, Sylvia

beast'sbelle said...

Thanks for your comment, Sylvia. It's always nice to meet another sister in Christ. :)

Elliebob said...

I never want to grow up either. :) I love your blog!

beast'sbelle said...

Thanks, Elliebob. :)

Anna said...

I am a child and I never want to grow up! :) I want to continue my prayers to Jesus through my whole life though

beast'sbelle said...

Thanks for commenting, Anna. Whether you want to grow up or not, prayer and daily fellowship with Christ is definitely a vital part of life. :) My day is always better and more productive for Him when I've spent time in the Word and in prayer.

Carolyn said...

Wow... i stumbled upon your blog & so happy i did :) I'm glad to know i'm not the only one who felt this way growing up & still loves all these things as an adult. I'm 27, so i was just the perfect age during the "disney renaissance" & lucky to experience the greatest time to be a child. I miss those days so much! Between all the stress that adulthood brings... it's easy to forget what used to make us happy. I live in NYC & saw Mary Poppins on broadway in September... wow, there is something about disney that just envelopes you in magic!

I also recently took my first trip to Disney World in November for my birthday... & i was in heaven! I could pass for a teen, so it was fun to be called "princess" for an entire week :) It brought back all the memories from when i was little & made realize how magical this stuff really is.

I would watch "Beauty and the Beast", "The Little Mermaid" & "Aladdin" all the time. I remember getting a beautiful Belle barbie & the Beast for Christmas that year & everything else B&B too. Add it was sad to find out that i was the only girl in 6th grade who still loved her dolls. But it was wonderful to be in design school when designer toys became popular & it was cool to collect vintage & vinyl toys. Like you, Belle was always my favorite... i really related to her, especially now as an adult. Now i've gradually started adding little disney touches to my apartment (even a few stickers in my sketchbook), to remind me to keep believing in my dreams & that i don't have to let go of what makes me happy just because i'm grown up.

Thank you so much for sharing! Take Care :)

beast'sbelle said...

Thank you so much for commenting, Carolyn. :) It was great to hear your story. That's what I love about blogging: meeting new people who have so much in common with me.

We definitely did grow up in the best Disney era, in my opinion. :)

How exciting that you got to go to Disney World! I've been to Disneyland 3 times, once when I was 6, once when I was 13, and once when I was 4 months pregnant with my oldest daughter. Disneyland is a lot closer for us than Disney World, so I don't know that we'll ever make it there. We'd love to take our girls to Disneyland, though. Hopefully, our budget will allow a trip in the next year or two. :)

It's nice when you're around people who make you realize that it's okay to like toys even though you're grown up, isn't it? :) I know that's how I felt in college.

Have a wonderful holiday season and a Merry Christmas. :)

beastsbelle said...

Hi Cindybin. I'd love to respond to your comment, but I'd prefer to do it through email, where it will be easier to have a full conversation. Would you be willing to email me at nevergrowup.beastsbelle@gmail.com? Thanks. :)

Amelia said...

I love your blog!
I love AmericanGirl, too, even though I'm a little 'old' for it.
Your blog shows that you're never to old to play with dolls, Thank You!

beastsbelle said...

Thanks, Amelia. Glad you're enjoying the blog, and I'm glad I could help you see that you can play with dolls at any age. ;)

sweetharmony said...

Hi! I love that you blog about dolls! I too am in my 30's and still am fascinated with dolls, barbies, and toys in general. I recently found your blog and am loving it! Every time I get a new doll, I get that same intense joy like when I was a little girl!

beastsbelle said...

Hi, sweetharmony. :) Nice to meet you. It's always great meeting another "kindred spirit". :)

Thanks for stopping by!

P.S. I'm the same way with my new dolls...I feel like a little girl on Christmas morning. :)

Happysuz said...

Hi, I just stumbled on your blog. I was a Barbie fan as a child (AG wasn't around then) and like you, put them away in Jr. High. My DD is almost 6 and now has my Barbie collection. I'm in love with AG and other dolls like them. I am now buying dolls for me too, not just my DD and having a blast.

Oh, I'm also a singer in church. You should totally do some community theater, it's such a blast. I have done it my whole life and now am artistic director of a high school musical theater program. I'm hoping to launch a blog next year about my doll crafts, other crafts and my creative theater projects.

Blessings,
Happysuz

beastsbelle said...

Hi Happysuz...it's great to meet you! :) Sounds like we have a lot in common.

I would love to do some community theater if the opportunity arose. Right now, I've got a little too much going to add something else, though. :}

Let me know when you start your blog...I'd love to check it out! :)

Thanks for stopping by. :)

ssneed said...

Hi! I just discovered your site and I have always been a doll fan too. I am 50 years old, divorced with no children. And, when I was 14, my mom told me that I was too big for dolls and that it would be my last one. Sigh...

Unfortunately, none of my dolls survived childhood because my younger sister loved to destroy them -- Urgh!!! However, I could never get over my love for dolls. I hid the desire by making doll clothes, etc., for friends children. I even began sculpting dolls which is an acceptable way to collect dolls. I've sculpted ten dolls and haven't sold any of them. Yes, they are all mine. But when the Twilight craze hit, I exclaimed that I no longer cared what other people think so I bought myself a few of the Twilight dolls.

Finally, the best thing occurred in Christmas 2011. Although on a fixed income, my mom always managed to give each of the kids and grandkids, $50. As an adult with my own money, it wasn't alot of money but I always tried to get something that I could say came from her. Well, in 2011 Christmas, I purchased the Bella and Edward Wedding dolls that arrived in February 2012 and I told my mother about her present to me. I even reminded her what she told me when I was 14. She didn't remember but she also told me that she was wrong, I would never be too old for dolls. They are a part of who I am. My mom passed in June 2012.

Thanks for sharing and allowing me and others to share as well.

beastsbelle said...

Ssneed, thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. I love hearing from my readers about their own experiences.

Thank you for sharing your own touching story. I'm sorry to hear about the passing of your mother, but I'm so glad you had that conversation with her beforehand.

My hope is that this blog will encourage others like me and you to feel the freedom to enjoy dolls no matter what their age and remind them that they're not alone. :)

discodiva1979 said...

WoW! I really enjoyed reading your blog & all the comments! In my fifties I still enjoy Barbies, they brought so many memories of good times. Now that I have a 2 yo granddaughter we spend time role playing with Barbies & she enjoys every second as do I. Not only do I have my childhood collection but have collected a ton & each year I plan to pass them on to her. My philosophy is you are NEVER too old to play with dolls.

beastsbelle said...

Thanks for commenting, Discodiva. :) I'm always happy to meet another doll lover who hasn't outgrown her dolls. ;)

Anonymous said...

I love dolls also, as a mother of 5 kids, my youngest and only daughter is 5,I started to look at Disney movies and then I fell in love with disney toys and then I discover American Girl store and my life change forever:)

beastsbelle said...

Thanks for stopping by, Anonymous. It sounds like we have a lot in common. :)

Jessica M. said...

Hi Belle. :) I find it so exciting to see there is someone else out there as doll crazy as me. Like you, I hid my little doll secret in middle school and tried not to like them so much, but they were always there still; Barbies, My Little Pony, Strawberry Shortcake, etc. It didn't matter.

I admit I am a little ADD about dolls. Sometimes I collect one kind and sometimes, another. My mom has always gotten on to me about it saying I am too old for dolls and I need to save my money for other things. I used to get by that by sneaking a few home from Goodwill that I could fix up under the rouse of regifting them. I have regifted a large portion of my CPK collection and I passed a lot of Barbies on to my cousin, but that was just so I could free up some more space for more collecting I think. ;) Now I just sneak them into my apartment... what Mom doesn't know can't hurt me! lol I suspect there are more doll crazy women out there than we would think. ;)

Also, I want to commend you on your courage to stand up for Christ and share your faith. At 35 I am still patiently waiting for the Lord to bring me the man he has for me. I am so happy for you in all His blessings to you. Thank you for sharing yourself with us. :)

beastsbelle said...

Thanks for commenting, Jessica. It's great to "meet" you. :) It sounds like we have a lot of common interests. It's always nice to know we're not the only crazy doll collectors out there, right? ;)

I'm thrilled to learn you're a sister in Christ, too. :) My faith is a huge part of who I am, so I definitely wanted that to influence my blog, even though it's primarily about dolls and toys. I'll be praying for you as you wait for His leading regarding your future husband. :)

Cris said...

Gee, it was so much fun reading your profile story. I thought I was alone in loving to "play" with dolls. I have always loved dolls since I was a child. I now have 3 AG dolls and another on the way. And the greatest thing is that you are a born again Christian. I am so excited to fine a blog of someone who has my interests. My age: 62!!!!

beastsbelle said...

Thanks for stopping by, Cris! Like you, I love meeting people with similar interests. To meet another sister in Christ is an added bonus. ;) I hope you enjoy the blog! :)

BlueyedBelle said...

I had to stop and see if I had written this! Our lives are sooo similar! Everything including having 3 girls (and I named the youngest Belle in honor of my favorite princess!) I loved finding your site and finding an adult that is like me. Makes spending my hard earned money on AG dolls and monster high dolls acceptable!

beastsbelle said...

So great to hear from you, BlueyedBelle. :) It does sound like we have a lot in common! :)

Sorry it took me so long to get this comment up...it had been redirected to my spam folder for some reason. :(

Angel31295w said...

This is awesome! I'm still only 18..but still I haven't grown up yet haha. I love my AG dolls more than anything...well that and Toy Story haha. I have 26 as of right now. All from different places such as holidays, good wills, my own money, and yes, even the garbage XD. I hope to be like you and never give up my passion :)

beastsbelle said...

Hi, Angel31295w. Nice to hear from you. It sounds like we have a lot of similar interests. :)

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Dawn said...

How exciting to find your wonderful blog! All these years i've put myself down instead of accepting that I like what I like, which are toys and dolls. I just got my first AG doll ever in May 2013. I was hooked. The clothes, the accessories. I would watch the you tubes of loot kids had gotten at the stores and their AG doll houses. I was like "I want one" LOL. I thought I was the weirdest person on the planet. Really. I thought what is wrong with you? You are supposed to be spending your money on hair and handbags and customized drapes, not dolls. But today I feel a kindred spirit here. I am not weird or at least bad weird like I thought. Here I am a normal happy balanced 36 year old woman who likes what I like. *Hugs* to you all.

beastsbelle said...

Aww, Dawn, welcome to the club! ;) I completely understand what you're talking about...I used to feel the same way. Isn't it a relief to just be able to enjoy what you enjoy without feeling weird or guilty? ;)

Hope you enjoy the blog and find many kindred spirits here! :)

AngieBelle said...

Hi! My name is Angela, I just came across your blog while looking at Disney doll related sites, and wow- you sound just like me! We are about the same age- I saw you mention being 10 when Beauty and the Beast came out and in 3rd grade for Little Mermaid, same here. Beauty and the Beast is my absolute favorite! I've used the screenname AngieBelle since I was 15. I have a collection of well over 50 Disney dolls, and at least 30 of them are variations of Belle! I'm also a hardcore fan of American Girl. I got my first for my 9th birthday and now have 21, and they have more clothes than I do. I even have an AG sized dollhouse made from two IKEA wardrobe units! :)

beastsbelle said...

Wow, we do sound like two peas in a pod! ;) Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment, AngieBelle. It's great to "meet" you! :)

beastsbelle said...

P.S. Can I come over and play sometime? ;)

Anonymous said...

Im 65 and still love dolls. Your never to old.

dkinley said...

Hi! I just discovered your blog - love the 18 inch doll comparison posts. Very helpful in creating clothing for them.

ElsaIcySnowflake said...

I just wanted to say I nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award.:) http://dollsdisneyrollercoasters.blogspot.com/2017/01/the-blogger-recognition-award.html