Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Mrs. Beasley

I LOVE Mrs. Beasley. Who remembers her?

When I was a little girl, I loved the show Family Affair and the little girl Buffy had a doll she called Mrs. Beasley. (which Buffy claimed talked to her, often making very funny comments)

Growing up, we didn’t have a lot of money and it was a big deal to be able to go to the city to a department store. Once while shopping - I spotted waaaay up on the top shelf - a Mrs. Beasley doll. I could hardly contain my excitement and I asked my dad if he could reach her down for me. I couldn’t believe my eyes; a Real Mrs. Beasley! I said, “ohhhh, Can we buy her?” My mom replied, “No… I’m afraid we can’t, she’s too much money.” Then I heard my mother quietly exclaim to my father, ‘It’s $30!”

“I know. I'll ask Santa!!”. My parents just looked at each other.

Closer to Christmas my mom would ask me, “What do you want from Santa?”
“Mrs. Beasley”
Well, what else do you want?
“Nothing. Just Mrs. Beasley.”
“Well, you must want something else.”
“Nope. Just Mrs. Beasley.”
"Come on, there must be something else."
"Nope. Just Mrs. Beasley."

In hindsight, I remember my mom getting others to ask me what I wanted. I only ever replied, “Mrs. Beasley”. No matter how many times anyone asked, that was the ONLY answer they got.

I woke up Christmas morning and Mrs. Beasley was sitting in a little wooden rocking chair. She was waiting just for me. I couldn’t wait to pull her string to listen to her many sayings:

Do you want to play?,
Gracious me, you’re getting to be such a big girl!,
If you could have three wishes, what would you wish for?,
I do think you’re the nicest friend I ever had!,
Would you like to try on my glasses?
You may if you wish, It would be such fun to play jump rope, don’t you think?,
If you were a little smaller, I could rock you to sleep,
Do you want to hear a secret? I know one!,
Speak a little louder dear, so Mrs. Beasley can hear you,
You may call me Mrs. Beasley, would you like to play?,
Long ago, I was a little girl, just like you!
Last year I was shopping one day at a fabric store and saw blue material with white polka dots. I knew EXACTLY what my Halloween costume would be. It was a hit.

This year, I entered the Mrs. Beasley costume in the fair. I took a photo of Mrs. Beasley's face and enlarged it to fit on a cardboard cut out and hung everything together on a hanger to display. Much to my dismay though, when they displayed Mrs. Beasley they didn't actually hang her up, they just sort of flopped her in the corner as if they were propping her up like a doll. However, all you really got to see was a clump of blue material with white polka dots with a face sticking out the top and two huge yellow feet. Poor Mrs. Beasley got ripped off of her coming out debut. Oh well.... The costume still won 2nd place.

I can’t imagine, nor do I even want to think about what my Christmas would have been like if Mrs. Beasley wasn’t under the tree that morning. $30 was a lot of money in 1967 for my parents to come up with, but they somehow managed, and I am forever grateful. I still have my Mrs. Beasley. She lost her glasses and she can’t talk anymore.

My kids think she is one of the scariest things they have ever seen, but I can’t even imagine ever parting with her.


Tina said...

OMG I loved Mrs Beasley...even growing up in Germany we had Mrs Beasley...great funny.....

Catherine said...

I love it!!! Did you have a pull string on your costume??

Jules said...

I remember Mrs. Beasley! I even had a cat named Mrs. Beasley (her name was Beasley, I added the Mrs. to it) a couple years ago.

Awesome costume!!!

Diane said...

I loved Family Affair! I had such a crush on Johnny Whitaker :) and I wanted Sebastian Cabot to be my nanny and read Winnie the Pooh to me!
My younger sister had a Mrs. Beasley doll. I don't know what ever happened to it.

Bonnie said...

Yes, the costume had a pull string. All it was, was a retractable measuring tape. It gave the effect perfectly. I seriously considered taking the voice box out of the doll and seeing if I could find a way to make it work, but I was too afraid to take her apart. Perhaps someday I'll get up the nerve. Thanks for all the comments; glad you enjoyed the story and costume. Brings back memories doesn't it?

Keith Knight said...

I still restore Mrs Beasley if youe ver want to hear her talk again jsut let me know... I love Mrs Beasley....

Anonymous said...

OMG! I don't usually post comments, but just had to. Maybe I'm a little too nostalgic but reading your blog about Mrs. Beasley made me teary-eyed. I took my Mrs. Beasley everywhere, and I mean everywhere with me. Even swimming at the beach. The following day poor Mrs. Beasley was hanging (in parts) from the clothes line to dry. My mother had to resew an entire body for her. I still have my friend. She's partly bald, missing her clothes, glasses and can no longer speak. But I LOVE her. I told my daughter when I go Mrs. Beasley goes with me. No one else is going to love her like I do. Thanks for listing her sayings. I had forgotten some of them. One day I'll make a costume like yours. Wonderful idea.

maisymoo said...

Hi there,
I am in need of a Mrs.Beasley costume for an upcoming charity event. Would you be willing to rent yours to me? I am an honest, trustworthy mother of two. Please let me know! Thank you.

Leanne King said...

Good morning!! Love Mrs. Beasley.. I am hoping to be in our High School parade next year and want to go as Mrs. Beasley.. My challenge right now is that I cannot find a pattern for her outfit. Would appreciate it if you can tell me what you used to guide you through the making of yours.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you.

Bonnie said...

Dear Leanne - Who doesn’t love Mrs. Beasley?? LOL

I really didn’t have a pattern – just did it out of my head. – I’m not a sewer of clothing – mostly just craft stuff but I figured it was worth a shot.
I made it so long ago, I might have laid down a pair of pants and just got a basic outline for the hip width/crotch area etc – I cut out extra material on all sides because you want it full and loose.
And I did the same for the top. Another thing I did was I got a measuring tape from Fabricland (they sell them at the cashiers) – and I made a little pocket for it to sit in. then I pulled out a little bit of tape and looped it around a plastic ring to make the pull string she had. The tape I got was retractable … and it made a little clicking noise when you pulled it out so it was kind of cool.

I’m sure if you found a clown costume pattern – some of them come in two pieces – that would probably help.
If you go to a $ store and find a cheap pair of black frame glasses and pop the lenses out – that would be cute too.

I hope that was somewhat helpful. Good luck and enjoy the parade!

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