Dolls are a silent reminder of happy times
By RACHEL SCOLLAY
WHEN asked to pose with her favourite doll, Cissie Page makes a grab for her two-yearold great-granddaughter, Kellie.
"This is my favourite," said the 90-year-old who is still full of energy and helps out with the babysitting.
The dolls were part of a vision Cissie shared with her daughter, Thelma ? to open a doll museum for young chil- dren.
But Thelma died two years ago, aged 57 and that's when the collecting stopped.
Nobody knows exactly how many dolls there are but they take up two rooms of Cissie's North Lismore house. A rough guess puts the figure at over 1000.
With the museum plans abandoned, the dolls sit silently on the shelves or in prams and bassinets, each one a reminder of the happy times Cissie shared with her daughter.
"I can remember where we got every single doll," she said, her eyes filling with tears.
"And we were always together. When I lost her, I lost the interest. I've just kept hold of them."
Despite the fact that many are antiques, her 22 greatgrandchildren are allowed to play with the dolls, just as her granddaughter Carrie-Anne did a generation before.
"Ever since I can remember Ciss has always had a roomful of dolls," said Carrie-Anne who is now 25 and a mother of two. "We used to get scared, with all those eyes looking at us."
So what kind of dolls did Cissie have back in her day?
"I never had a doll as a child," she said. "That's one of the things you won't believe. I didn't even know when it was my birthday."