'Little Baby,' big problem

Enjoy an entertaining story of how separation anxiety was eased by a man in Brown.

By Jerry Ross, a UPS healthcare communications manager on 3/25/2013


Her name is Little Baby, and she's one of the least attractive child's dolls ever seen. Her hairless head is too big, her skin is too pink and one eye spends more time closed than open, giving her the appearance of perpetual paranoia. But despite imperfections, she means the entire world to our Kate.

Little Baby originally was one of a pair of nearly identical (but identically unattractive) doll sisters gifted to Kate when she was 2 or 3 years old by a relative with a twisted sense of humor. One doll was large, one small. All these years later, we don't recall what happened to Big Baby, but we believe she was quietly "recycled."

Somehow Little Baby became Kate's most comforting toy. The little girl and her plastic pal were for a time inseparable and, at bedtime, still remain so. Inquiries into the nature of the relationship inevitably produce much the same response: "Well, I know that she's really just a doll, but she's just like a real person to me."

If Kate takes a trip, so too does Little Baby. What's more, this pair is well-traveled. A journey across the Atlantic to see family is more or less an annual event, and Daddy's biggest fear is that, amid the tumult of traveling, Little Baby might remain on a plane, and end up forever abandoned deep in a European landfill.

Over the years, which incidentally have not been kind to Little Baby, "If lost" contact information has been Sharpied on her body. She also has had a hole drilled through her upper arm through which, when traveling, a stout nylon cord passes. It's connected to a parent's belt loop, so that when the family leaves an aircraft, so too will Little Baby. We hope she's loss-proof.

Separation anxiety  
Of course, much the same thing was assumed about the Titanic, so that's not to say that separation could never happen. And it finally did. When Kate arrived at her grandmother's house for a weekend stay, it was discovered that Little Baby had somehow remained at home, several hundred miles away, reclining on Kate's bed with her fearsome head resting comfortably on the pillow – with one eye open, of course.

There were no tears as the challenge was discussed by phone, but they probably weren't far away.

"But how will I be able to sleep without Little Baby?"

"Well, Nana has a dog, Kate … what about that?"

"But a dog's not a person; it doesn't even look like a person."

"I think a dog looks more like a real person than Little Baby does."

"Can I come home please?"

Now that was a problem. Mommy and Daddy had been focused all week on a child-free Saturday night involving Beef Wellington, Bordeaux and plenty of bonhomie at Café Alsace, including a taxi ride home.

"We'll have Little Baby with you tomorrow morning, OK? Just hang in there."

"Are you bringing her here?"

"She'll be there, don't worry."

Just-in-time delivery  
Time: Fifteen minutes later.
Location: The UPS Store® located conveniently opposite our local pub.     
Purchases: Little Baby-sized box, UPS Next Day Air® with Saturday Delivery.  
Event: Little Baby shipped.

Time: Fifteen minutes later.
Location: Our local pub located conveniently opposite The UPS Store.      
Purchases: Two adult beverages.    
Event: Phone rings.

"Daddy, how exactly is Little Baby going to get here tomorrow?"

"The UPS driver is going to bring her."

"WHAT? You gave Little Baby to the UPS man? Did you tell him to clip her to his belt loop?"

"Of course."

"Is she going on an airplane?"


"Whose belt loop will she be on in the plane?"

"The First Officer's."

"Where does he sit?"

"The pointy end."

"Will the UPS driver have her clipped to his belt loop, too?"

"Well, only until he's right around the corner, and then he'll have to package her up again. That's the rules."


The next day, several hundred miles away, I was told that an unwitting UPS driver rolled up to Nana's home mid-morning, and a 6-year-old ran to meet him, closely followed by the homeowner.


"So I guess you're Kate Ross?" asked the driver.

"Yes! Did you keep Little Baby on your belt loop like Daddy said you would?"

The driver, nonplussed, looked at Nana, who had stationed herself behind the recipient of the package.

"Yes," mouthed Nana silently to the driver, nodding her head. "Say yes!" she mouthed. He did. And as Kate ran into the house to unwrap Little Baby, Nana told the UPS driver, "It's a long story; I'll explain next time." 

That evening, one kid slept tight, two parents enjoyed their night and one UPS driver probably wondered exactly what he'd done right.

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Reader Comments

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What a great story. UPS to the resue again. WTG guys and gals!!!!!
Jan S
What a wonderful story and what a great Dad. I could see our UPS man going along with Nana, he is as great as that delivery person was.
What a great story. I would have loved to see a picture of the driver's face. It would have been priceless.
Great Story.
My now 21 year-old still remembers when she lost her "blankie" at the Balloon Fiesta in New Mexico when she was six. We were not able to find it or have it shipped, and she's still a little miffed at me. It was fun to read a success story!
This story amused me a lot because a lot of people buy my older dolls, beanie babies, and teddy bears for just this reason, a favorite toy getting lost or left behind. I have spent my share of time rushing off packages of this sort, so I was greatly amused. I've even gone shopping and searching for favorite dolls for adults who had a favorite toy sold at a yard sale or otherwise disappear. Sometimes the dog eats it.
Cat Lady
Rock on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thank you God!!!!
Retired folks sure do need blankets ijs
What a great story, really enjoyed it. To one little girl, that driver was a hero that day :-)
Marjai B
Beautiful heartfelt story wtg guys
My son, when he was little, had a blankie that his aunt made him and he slept w/ it every night & took it w/ him where ever he went. Until one day when we were leaving Childrens Hospital in Seattle, WA & we stopped at a gas station to use the bathroom. I was not feeling well so I let him go in the men's bathroom by himself. We didn't realize he had left it in the men's bathroom until we were back on the road & his grandma didn't want to turn around to get it. I was really as upset as was he about losing it. Him having to sleep w/ out it when we got home was a sad thing until his aunt that made the first one took his curtains which were made another one. It just wasn't the same because it wasn't worn & loved like the first one was. But at least he had a blanket to sleep with!
I had a similar thing happen. I had a stuffed gray kitty and I had left her at home while I was at my grandparents, in a different state. They had my dad ship it to me.
I'm 70 years old and little baby reminded me of Poopsie Bear. Poopsie Bear was born in 1947 when Santa (alias Uncle Mike) brought a bag with toys. Most were wrapped but as Santa reached into the bag and pulled out the bear there was an oopsy poopsy sound. I forever called him by that name. He was my everywhere companion. I was totally shocked when I couldn't take him to school. Poopsie shared all things sad or happy. His final scarfice was to a little boy who was very ill. After seven months, Charlie died but Poopsie is still keeping him company.
Great story...Reminds me of my daughter, now 27, who never went anywhere without her little stuffed bear she called bear bear. We never left the house without it. It has now been handed down to her daughter who loves her bear bear just as much as her mommy did...
Self-praising propaganda from a tyrannical corporation.
normaanna lomax
I understand that parents feelings when a child loses or leaves behind their favorite toy. My parents bought my 6 month old baby girl a doll and at the age of 2, she named her doll after her grandmother, Pauline. That doll went everywhere with us. While in Hobbs, New Mexico, visiting family, my daughter left Pauline at mom's house. When we arrived back home in Texas, she realized Pauline was gone. I called my mom and asked her to send pauline U.P.S. Mom said yes. UPS arrived with Pauline and my daughter told the UPS gentlemen that Pauline tried to stay with grandma. My daughter is 28 years old and still has Pauline in her own house... Peace and Merry Christmas America
Lighten up Scrooge!!! This story is for inspiration and fond memories for a lot of people whether it is true or not!!! You are a very cynical person!
I drove 75 miles round trip to find Baloo the bear after my daughter left him in a store we had shopped in. She had told me she would never sleep again. So I called all the stores we had been in with no luck. But an hour later a wonderful woman from the candle store we had been in said she found him and would leave him on the front porch, as they were closing. When I saw Baloo sitting on the bench I jumped out of the car! Great memory.
Mary Landry
When my daughter had her second daughter, I as the grandmother, took the the oldest granddaughter shopping to get a special gift for her new sister. Went into the store to the baby section looking for the right gift. Of course, she found her special surprise for herself too. A baby that she named minky. Just a plain stuffed baby made out of minky material. This doll became her special toy that she carried every where she went. This doll still sleeps with her today. She has been lost many times. The first one went missing, never to be found. After this we bought two extras which we put away. We were so lucky in finding more. I do know what it takes to hold on to those special toys of the past. Thanks for your story. Brings back the past for me.
Judi Thompson
How sweet was that.
That was a wonderful story. I know the importance of these attachments. I'm a mom, my daughter has a baby blanket. It was knitted by her grandmother when I was pregnant. It was misplaced, dragged on the ground and lost in a hotel, but it was found! My daughter is now 36 years old and the worn blanket is still cherished and important to her.
Sam smith
Christmas Eve and all you can do is be negative. Regardless if it is a true story or not. You will be visited by the 3 ghosts of ups tonight......loser!!!!
Aww, that is such a sweet or perhaps bittersweet story.
Debi Ott
That was a awesome story!
As a Mom.... I would have done the same thing. As for the grandmother telling the UPS guy what to say... Thank UPS for playing along! I wished all children were as loved and doted on as Kate!
Kay Canupp
UPS is awesome!!
What a beautiful story Bonnie.
Patricia Pallon
Very heartwarming story! Hope the UPS driver gets to read it!
Eleanor Harkness
Loved the story. UPS has brought much joy over the years to many people. This was just one beautiful example.
What a sweet story and one I can definitely relate to as a mother of three well traveled girls who ways have their favorite dolls in tow as well. I also had my favorite dolls with me everywhere I went when I was little. As a side note, the photo of this doll looks very much like the infant doll from American Girl Doll called "Bitty Baby". My girls each have one and she is their most treasured AG doll!
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