Betty the Baboon and Potter the Otter

betty and otter black dress


journal entry:

Betty is a Baboon. It is very clear that she is not ordinary. She is life-sized and I thrifted her. I found her face down behind lots of other big animals and I clearly heard her ask me for help. She is so life-like that she actually startled me.

I washed her and cleaned her up. I added just a spritz of cologne.

Somewhere under the pile of animals I heard another voice.  It said “oh, please . . . don’t forget me.”

“And, who are you?” I asked.

“I am Potter the Otter.”

“Oh. Come along.”

Betty, however, wanted a girl. She was glad to have a soft friend like Potter the Otter but she really wanted a little girl. A noisy, busy, sweet and soft little girl. That is because Betty loved to play dress-ups. She had watched little girls in their twirling skirts and fancy hats while she sat in a tree at the Zoo. Betty wanted to be just like them.


I thrifted some clothes for Betty. Dresses and skirts, hats and purses.

And, jewelry.

She could barely contain her excitement.

I told Betty that I knew just the little girl for her.

The little girl’s name was Olive.


betty earmuffs close up


Betty wanted to know when she could meet Olive. I told her that I would take her to Olive’s Birthday Party. Olive was turning three. I told her that she could wear whatever she wanted to wear to the birthday party.

“Will Olive want me?”

 Oh, yes . . .

She will squeeze you and kiss you and take you home.

Ohhhhhh. Could it be true?




betty crown and tutu


It seemed to me that Betty changed her clothes a million times during the next few days. She couldn’t decide if she wanted to be fancy or plain or interesting or something else. She couldn’t decide which hat went best with which vest or which necklace looked best with which dress.

Potter the Otter was very patient. In fact, he didn’t say a word.

Betty the Baboon was not.


betty says hello


Olive’s birthday finally came. Betty settled on her red glitter skirt and her striped sweater. She wore her alligator bracelet, her herringbone hat and carried her little black and white striped purse with the tiny zipper.

Then Betty sat down with a sigh, to wait for the party.



Grandma made a book about Betty and tucked it into the bag with Betty’s clothes.

(This page shows Betty with her favorite storybook which is called Once There Was a Monkey)


“In a world, where things can be quite ordinary,

it is nice to create as many magical moments as you can .



(A grandchild’s favorite word)




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