©, ReadingEagle, 2012

Suzie Garlow at Opportunity House, 2/2012

So beautiful in their tenderness, one and all...

Big-eared toys bring big smiles to preschoolers

Mike Urban 
Reading Eagle

Twenty preschoolers walked into the Second Street Learning Center empty-handed Friday. When those 3- and 4-year-olds walked out, though, each was carrying a new friend.

The youngsters attend day care in the Opportunity House facility while their parents are at work, and most come from families in need.

Suzie Garlow of Sinking Spring supports the organization and thought the children would enjoy receiving Little Reps, which are dolls created by her friend, Denise Garlow of Atlanta.

Denise's daughter Grace inspired the dolls with a drawing she made, and Denise helped bring them to life.

The colorful Little Reps have huge, fuzzy ears, which makes them good listeners, Suzie said. They also have hidden golden pockets, a great place to hide prized keepsakes.

Since the toys are not yet in full production, Suzie gave the children Little Reps that were part of an initial run.

They were a big hit. The youngsters immediately hugged them, played with them and were excited to learn they could take them home.

When Suzie asked how the children felt, "happy" was the unanimous response.

"They are for any day when you need a friend, need a hug, or need someone to listen," Suzie told them.

Friday didn't start real well for the children, with the cold, rainy weather putting many in grumpy moods, said Laura Noah-Stevens, head school-age teacher at the learning center.

The Little Reps, though, were a welcome gift, she said.

"Every one of them is walking out with a smile on their face," Noah-Stevens said of her students. "They already have an emotional attachment to them (the toys). It's something new for them to bond with."

Contact Mike Urban: 610-371-5023 or murban@readingeagle.com.


Preschoolers at Opportunity House's Second Street Learning Center in Reading playing with the Little Reps toys they were given Friday are, from left, Jahil Wall, 5, Kendra Rojas, 4; Jasmine Zaragoza, 5; and Anesha Brown, 4.

Little Rep toys were recently donated to Opportunity House in Reading, Pennsylvania. Suzie had a great day singing and playing with the children.  Here is a teaching song we made up. (sung to Frere Jacques)

Are you listening?

Are you listening

to your heart,

to your heart?

What is it saying?

What is it singing?

Tell me now. Tell me now.