Thursday, April 2, 2009


Are you familiar with 'Olivia'? She is an absolutely adorable little pig created by Ian Falconer, in honor of his niece, also named Olivia. (Purely coincidental, I'm sure).

I fell in love with this precocious little creature since the moment I first laid eyes on her. I'm sure that, largely, is due to the fact that my daughter's middle name is O'Livia.

By the time I had discovered Olivia the Pig, O'Livia the Girl had discovered college and sorority life.

I'd just missed the age where I could buy all the Olivia books, dolls and paraphernalia that comes with a child's love for a literary character. (I'd just finished packing away all the American Girl books and toys from a few years before.)

Or it's very possible my love for Olivia comes from a deep-seeded, unfulfilled childhood fantasy. You see, I have always wanted a baby pig. I still want a baby pig! If I had a dollar for every time I begged Daddy for one I'd be a millionaire. Of course if I had a dollar for every time he said 'no', I'd be a multi-millionaire. And you know that old saying about how we grow up to marry our fathers?...yup - you guessed it. Still no baby pig for Kathie.

But don't feel sorry for me. This story does have a happy ending! You see, last night at the Kennedy Center before the ballet performance of 'Peter Pan', Mama and I browsed through the gift shop. And right there on the shelf smiling back at me with that sweet little 'I-know-you-want-to-buy-me' grin, was Olivia herself, performing her own ballet routine of leaps and pirouettes.

My heart leapt with joy! Why, I'd almost forgotten about her!

Without a moment's hesitation I paid for the book. Clutching it tightly against my heart I almost felt as if Olivia herself had reached out to me. For that evening during the ballet performance, all I could contemplate was a sweet little girl that would (in a few years) be perched on my lap, eyes wide with wander as she watched her first performance of the Washington Ballet.

What better way than to allow this charming little character, Olivia, to plant that first seed of interest.

And you can guarantee, that if Sophia ever decides she wants a baby pig - it will be hers for the asking!


Lisa Ann said...

Aw...I bet grandma will give her anything she wants. I'm excited for you to meet Sophia and I bet she will love Olivia.

~Crystal~ said...

I have always wanted a pig also.
I have the Olivia books, but really don't have a need for them. I want to read one now! I'll have to check some out at the library for my niece.

Kate said...

I love Olivia. The show is cute too but not as cute as the books!

Coffee with Cathy said...

It was the part about browsing the gift shop before ballet at the Kennedy Center that got to me -- you're a lucky, lucky girl!

ADG said...

I've built so many great memories with LFG...some of which include reading the Olivia books over and over and over and over and over and over...just like, I think, Olivia herself would expect them to be read.