(Photo Courtesy: Ehow)


Dear Diary,


When I was a little girl, my father braved the freezing cold and stood in line for hours to purchase an African-American Cabbage Patch Doll named Dickie, which coincidentally is my dad’s nickname.  Dickie wasn’t my first child from Babyland General, but he was the first one who had brown skin like me!  It was love at first sight.  I loved his crinkly brown hair and his deep dimples.  My grandmother made a leather jumper and jacket for him–an outfit I fought over when I little girl threw him in the snow.  I retaliated an pushed her down on the ground. Dickie was special, especially since retailers weren’t cranking out many brown babies on their assembly lines.


Although I loved my blonde-haired and blue-eyed dolls, the connection to Dickie was different.  He was “really” a part of my family.  I took him everywhere.  I was proud to carry a doll that looked like me.  His hair was coarse, and his brown was beautiful.  I didn’t know about self-esteem or confidence at the time, but I did know he made me feel good about myself.  After college, he moved with me to Lexington, Kentucky, where I worked as a television reporter.  I didn’t play with him as I did a decade prior.  Nonetheless, he had a special place in my room and in my heart.  (OK, he may have lived in the closet, but I still loved him dearly!)


As a first time mom, I want to give my daughter that same experience.  Fortunately, times have changed, and I don’t have to stand in long lines in winter weather to buy a brown baby.  Store shelves are now stocked with not only Black baby dolls but ones ranging in all skin colors.  You may have to search and shop a little harder to find them.  I’ll still purchase dolls of all colors for my child and will let her select which ones she wants.  She should have a diverse collection to reflect our diverse world.  But I will make sure the dolls reflect who she is–a pretty brown girl.  Here are five dolls I recently added (or plan to add) to her collection.


Sweet as Me Doll by Little Mommies



This doll is absolutely adorable!  It looks like my little girl who always sports two Afro puffs and tutus.  My daughter loves this doll.  She always wants to take the shoes off.



Baby Alive Doll by Hasbro




I haven’t bought this doll yet, but the Baby Alive Collection comes in various shades and styles.



Princess Tiana by My First Disney



I ordered this doll online to go with a matching Disney Princess Pram.  I was very disappointed to go to the Kohl’s Store and find every doll in the line on sale except Princess Tiana.  Perhaps the store ran out.  Not sure, but when I returned, I didn’t see her on the shelves.  I ordered it on Amazon.  I’m looking forward to Disney producing more movies with brown princesses.




Marvelous Maria by Positively Perfect



While writing this entry, I came across this doll.  Every doll represents positive statements, such as “I am proud,” “I am smart,” or “I am beautiful.” They are lovingly designed to show the beauty in our diversity, from curly to straight hair and buttercream to chocolate skin.   What a wonderful way to encourage a healthy self-esteem!



 Bitty Twins by American Girl Dolls






I cannot wait to take my daughter to the American Girl Store in New York.  I think I’ll take the trip for her third birthday.   I imagine this to be the ultimate doll shopping experience.  I bit pricey, so I better start saving my pennies now!


Hey DFTM Fam–What dolls would you add to the list?  Send us a link or a photo! 




About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

7 Responses

  1. Joyce@MommyTalkShow

    I’d add the Kenya doll to the list. It was re-released last year in versions for little girls to grown ups.
    There are even action figures for boys for Kenya’s band mates.

    • newmom0608

      Joyce, I just googled the Kenya doll. That’s for letting me know about it.

  2. Chasing Joy

    Cabbage Catch kids were my favorite. I had brown ones (a boy, girl with yarn hair, and girl with curly hair) and white ones (with red yarn hair and blond hair.) When I have a daughter one day I hope to give her a diverse collection of dolls too.

  3. Hanifah Munadi

    My girls had collections of Barbie dolls from all over the world. Little by little they were taken by people. It really saddens me when I think about it. Beautiful article. Thanks for sharing. Such an adorable article and informative.

    • newmom0608

      So to hear about the kidnapped Barbies:( I think I ended up giving mine away. Or they may be in a bin buried in my parent’s basement…lol

  4. Janeane Davis

    As a mother, I am happy there are more brown dolls being sold. I never played with white dolls as a child and I never gave my girls white dolls. I think it is important to have dolls reflect the child because playing with dolls helps a girl develop self esteem and a positive self image.

  5. Tomika B

    I love dolls an actually collect them. I still have my very first cabbage patch that my mom sought hard to find me. My husband bought me one as a gift, and I am so delighted to share my collection with my daughter. The AG store is our favorite. We make a special trip there twice a year. I would add Baby Alive to the List!


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