Explain a Lost Stuffed Animal’s New Appearance With This Story

Photo: Vital9s, Shutterstock
Photo: Vital9s, Shutterstock

Every parent of a child with a dearly beloved “lovey” lives in fear. Lovies — a favourite blanket, stuffed animal or other soft toy — tend to go everywhere their toddling owner goes. Which means they have a way of getting lost in the most inconvenient of places, such as the gas station you stopped at during your road trip, a campsite, that Airbnb at the beach, or simply into thin air.

If you’ve already got a duplicate that you’ve been washing and rotating with Lovey #1 every week or two so the lovey twins wear evenly and less noticeably from a toddler’s discerning eye, I applaud you. But it’s hard to guess whether it’ll be the stuffed penguin, the floppy-eared bunny or the soft blanket with the duck stitched in the corner that will capture their heart. And you can’t stock up on two of everything.

By the time you realise which lovey you’d better try to duplicate, the first one is probably already missing an eye, has a few swipes of pen or marker in various places and is sort of dull-looking overall. This is not a post about how you can locate a duplicate lovey — that post is right here. This post is about how to introduce Brand New Lovey after Dirty Original Lovey goes missing. And the answer, of course, is magic soap.

That’s the advice from Reddit user u/SteffyJeffy on this post:

I hear you can add “magic soap” to the washer and it instantly restores the old toy to brand new!

Most toddlers or preschoolers will be so relieved to see Duck-Duck return that they’ll embrace this explanation with ease. If you think your child will want to test that theory on every ragged stuffed toy they own, however, you’ll need to explain the magic only works on the most special, most beloved toys that get lost and find their way back home.

Other options? Oh, Mrs. Cuddles was away at the spa, dear child! She just forgot to tell you she was going! Look how refreshed and relaxed she looks now, though. Or, huh, Bear must have gone to the groomers, just like the dog does. It’s the only thing that makes sense! (Put one of those little bandanas around Bear’s neck like they do at the groomers, for extra effect.)

If the switcheroo tactic isn’t your style, you could also let your kid in on the whole dupe situation, and have a lovey for home and a lovey that travels outside the home — you probably know whether truth or magic will work best for your child.

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