We were so lucky to have customers who became friends over the years. We still cast for some of them every once in a while. One of them I hear from every July. He is a veteran Little League coach in our community. His name is John and he makes a “Smiley Baseball Player” for every new player to his team. He personalizes them also. They are the A’s team of his league and he paint them in the green and yellow A’s colors. The best is the personal touches he adds, like their name on the jersey, hair color, and eye color.
Sometimes he has to paint 6-8 of them and some years all the players return and he only needs 1 0r 2. He has expanded his ceramic gifts over the past 10 years. The returning players receive a handpainted trophy or baseball mitt depending on the number of years! This year, he drafted his very first girl onto the team! Lucky for me, I got to help him turn the very male looking baseball smiley into a convincing young lady!
John wanted to add a pony tail, so I put a hole at the back of the cap to accommodate this. When he dropped her off for me to finish the eyelashes and ponytail, I was so thrilled to see he had bought real hair the same color as his players!
Once the hair band was around the pony tail you couldn’t even see the hole anymore! I left it longer so the young lady could trim it to the right length. The face was definitely male , so we added rouge to her cheeks, wisps of hair under the brim of the cap, and eyelashes.
I wish I had known if she had pierced ears, that would have really added to the feminine factor. I think John does a wonderful job! The amount of time invested in these mementos is expansive! I know the amount of time and love that goes into these beauties! I just couldn’t resist showing off his work. This little girl is going to love her Smiley and treasure it for many years to come!
Oh heck yeah, there are still adults out there that create a safe and wonderful learning environment with fun in the sun to boot! Baseball is after all a GAME foremost and there should be fun while you are learning. It’s always a bonus when you win, but there is so much value in learning to lose graciously and the perseverance to dusting yourself off and trying again! I am so proud to call this man our friend!