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Official Article

Have a Plush Christmas!

By: MissM

What happens when a fast food restaurant has a special set of Christmas themed stuffed animals? A frenzy, that’s what happens. At least that is how I recall it when McDonald's and Burger King released cute Christmas themed plush animals in the 80s.

 

We’ll start with McDonald’s first. In 1988 the Muppet Babies show was a really big deal. I grew up with the Muppets and I certainly loved them dearly, but the idea that they had their own adventures as babies was just everything. Realizing that the world needed cute Muppet Baby stuffed animals in Christmas gear, McDonald’s answered my dreams.

 

Baby Kermit is missing his clothes, but he originally came with a vest and Santa hat. These were medium sized stuffed animals. The detail was nice on them as well. Kermit has plastic pieces for eyes and the coloring of his material has held up pretty well throughout the years. These were promotional items and I don’t believe they came in Happy Meals. I feel like they had to be purchased separately. The reason I say this is because I remember my parents getting angry that they had to spend extra on these things. Also, the fact that I made my parents hunt them all down was probably the biggest contributor to said anger.

 

Up next is my favorite. I remember wanting an outfit just like this. I loved Baby Miss Piggy. She was high maintenance and a bit bossy. I was able to relate as a kid. I’m not so bossy now, but when I was a kid, get out of the way! I was a terror. I love this plush though. Her curly hair and faux fur trimmed hood are just splendid. These plushes still get me in the Christmas spirit. I have a Fozzie too, but I could not find him in time for this article. There is always next year though, right?

 

One important part of Christmas is of course the reindeer! Rudolph may be the most famous reindeer ever, but in 1987 Rodney and his friends were certainly ready to give old Rudolph a run for his money. Hallmark and Burger King teamed up and released a series of beanie plush reindeer that had a great deal of charm associated with them.

 

I recently came across these in my parent’s attic this past summer and I am so glad I did. They are a further reminder of past Christmases and how I actually held onto them throughout the year. Normally Christmas decorations get put up once the holiday is over, but I used to have these on my shelf all year long. Until they were placed in the attic, hey, stuff happens.

 

We’ll look at Ramona first. First off, I love the name Ramona. I have just always liked that name. Anyways, Ramona Reindeer is in Swiss dot pajamas with a ribbon on her head. She is a younger reindeer out of the cast. Check out some images of her tag.

 

I am actually very surprised that her tag has stayed on her after all this time. That’s a Christmas miracle if there ever was one.

 

Flipped open there is the lovely vintage Burger King logo. Goodness I loved eating Burger King back in the day. Anyways, Ramona Reindeer has a brief little bio:

 

When it comes to rascals

Ramona’s the one!

She’s a mischievous reindeer

Who’s chock-full of fun!

That Randy’s her twin

Is not easy to see,

For they’re just as different

As two reindeer can be!

 

It’s a cute little bio. I believe there were four of these released: Ramona, her twin Randy, Rodney, and Rhonda!

 

While Ramona and her brother are the younger reindeer, Rhonda looks to be older as her antlers and body are larger. She also has the shape of a heart for lips. Unlike Ramona whose pajamas cannot be removed, Rhonda is wearing a removable festive dress with Swiss dots and wavy trim. She also has a larger bow on her head.

 

She is missing her tag, so I am not sure what her bio says. I was never truly certain of the back story of these characters, but I would pretend that Rhonda was Ramona’s mom. In terms of back story though, I recently saw a Rodney and Friends comic on eBay.

 

These were just charming little reindeer stuffed animals with a beanie type feel. I thought they were cute and I enjoyed collecting them as a kid. It’s funny how we hold onto certain things that instantly transport us back to retro holiday celebrations.

 

I wanted to share this group of old stuffed animals with you all, because they really meant a lot to me growing up. Stuffed animals have always been a bit different for me than dolls or action figures. There really isn’t much play value in a stuffed animal, but I loved adding these to my collection. There is a lot of personality with a stuffed animal. Particularly one with a holiday theme!

 

Well folks, this will probably be my last article before Christmas. I had intended to write some other stuff this week, but there has just been so much to do and not enough time in the day. I wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas. Stick around though! There have been some lovely Christmas themed articles around here so be sure to check them out. There’s always retro fun going on.      

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arizvega Posted on Jan 07, 2014 at 02:59 PM

:)

MissM Posted on Jan 05, 2014 at 08:42 AM

Oh wow, Vaporman, I really enjoyed this comment. I love that you shared about your plush cat Meowwy Wowwy and that your children can carry on the fun of playing with him. That is so cool. As much as I loved the licensed stuffed animals of my youth, I do agree with you, there is something to be said for the plush animals that didn't come from a license. There was something exciting about naming and creating a story for something that was essentially a blank canvas of fun. Thanks for sharing that, and I hope you have been doing well!

Vaporman87 Posted on Dec 23, 2013 at 03:28 AM

A great deal of my stuffed animals had special meaning to me growing up. They came into my possession by various means, but I don't recall any of them coming from a fast food joint.

I had stuffed animals from small shops to large box stores, but the ones I cared about the most had no brand or property affiliation. They were just "animals". Cats, dogs, bunnies, mice... just animals. It was the personality I gave them that made them extra special. None more so than "Meowwy Wowwy". A cat nearly as old as me, who still gets played with today (thanks to my children's interest in him - as played through me). He's pretty unique, as I have only ever found one other of his kind, but it was white instead of grey.

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