Cherub 5 cried and cried for her favorite stuffed toy, Bob the Tomato (but she used it as a pillow) after our fire. Of all she had lost, THIS was the only thing she truly wanted with all her heart (esp late at night). She had been using "Bob" as a pillow since her 2nd birthday ... and that's a long time when you are nearly 8yo.
So, of course, being good parents, I called and wrote to every store and manufacturer known to mankind (or nearly) ... and DadToCherubs scoured the internet nearly daily ... and still we came up empty. We had just nearly given up hope of finding a giant FLANNEL "Bob The Tomato" pillow (stuffed toy). The company still makes them, but they have changed to a plush fuzzy fabric. It was NOT the same, so it just would not do (we asked Cherub 5).
Well, in July I found an IDENTICAL item on ebay - FINALLY !!
So - we placed our bid IN SECRET, without telling Cherub 5 or anyone else - and of course that brought on a bidding war. YIKES !!
In the end ... we won ... and since it was a complete surprise to her ... Cherub 5 was sooooooooo excited ... WILD would be a more appropriate word to describe her reaction when she opened the box. (and MomToCherubs and DadToCherubs got tears of joy).