Maryellen Dreams of a New Dress

Words are from The One and Only by Valerie Tripp.  I have abbreviated the story.

Maryellen held the plaid dress up in front of herself as she looked in the mirror.  She sighed.

Maryellen Larkin Plaid

“Mom,” she said, “don’t you think this hand-me-down dress is sort of old and worn out?”

“Umph,” said Mom.  She was holding a pillow under her chin as she slipped a fresh pillowcase onto it.

noexif_IMG_6667_private“I sure would love a brand-new outfit to wear for the first day of fourth grade,” said Maryellen.  She got carried away, imagining herself in a chic, fashionable, grown-up-looking outfit like the ones girls wore on TV shows.  Oh boy!  Everyone would be impressed!

Maryellen Larkin Our GenerationShe said eagerly, “Mom you and I should go shopping and—”

“Maryellen!” Mrs. Larkin interrupted in a no-nonsense voice. “Carolyn’s plaid dress is perfectly fine for your first day of school.”

“OK, Mom,” . . . As one of six children, Maryellen had long ago learned the sad but true lesson that parents had only a certain amount of patience and energy and attention to give, and you couldn’t use more than your share or your parents got mad.

MaryellenShe’d save the shopping conversation for later.


19 thoughts on “Maryellen Dreams of a New Dress

  1. Xyra

    Nice story. I always enjoyed getting hand me downs from my cousin. I still like getting cast offs. many times they are in good shape.

    I’ve nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award. Check out Tea Time with Melody Q January 13, 2016 post later today for more details. (It’s not quite ready yet, but soon.)


    1. Jen Post author

      Thank you Xyra! We look forward to reading your post ❤️
      I would take some hand me downs too! I think having two older sisters like Maryellen would make hand me downs not so appealing, especially when you want to be “the one and only” like Ellie.


  2. grammagump

    I just read that part of the book today! We were at the dentist and I had to wait for my turn. It is fun to relate my childhood to the book!


    1. Jen Post author

      That’s great. I think Maryellen is a very sympathetic character and I like that Valerie Tripp helps us understand why she does what she does. And Scooter… He’s a great character for a dog. Ar-roo!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Laura Beth

    I’m slightly obsessed with your blog now. I’ve been a huge fan of American Girl for over 20 years now. I’ve always loved the books, reading and re-reading them. My husband bought me the beForever Kit for my birthday, and I’m over the moon excited!


    1. Jen Post author

      Oh, I’m so glad you have Kit! Her story, and Aunt Millie, is just the best. I have to admit I was slightly disappointed in Melody’s book. To me, it’s not as good as “The Watsons Go To Birmingham”… Same story, better characters. I do think Valerie Tripp hit a home run with Maryellen though.
      You need to come to WI next summer for the Madison Doll Sale!



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s