Aug 9, 2012

Muppet Fan's Muppet Collection Chronicle: Ceris Thomas

Ceris Thomas - I don’t have as large a collection as some Muppet Fans and for that I blame two things. Funds and my location. I grew up in a smaller town in Alberta and there was nary a Muppet item to be found, and most definitely no Disney Store to patronize. The same holds true for where I now live: London, Ontario. I could never collect any Palisades figures as there were none around to purchase but when I do find items of a Muppety nature, that I like, I try to snap them up. Most of the favourite things in my collection I’ve owned for years and I don’t even remember where or how I got them, as quite a few were gifts. I’m a lucky girl. I’m also lucky, in that now, I have a Muppet room. It is partially under construction as one wall needs to be rebuilt, but when complete it will be my office/sewing room and I’ll be surrounded by things I love. Missing from these shots are my Muppet Christmas plush and my Kermit the Frog phone as it hasn’t arrived from it’s ebay seller yet.

My Muppets 2011 poster. This greets you as you enter the room. This was a birthday present from a very good friend and devoted Muppet Fan. I bought him Muppet Monopoly for Christmas. At the time, I did not know that he was also a Monopoly collector. Score! I’ve not pinned the poster to the wall as I think I might like to frame it one day.

My Muppet puppets. All these guys here (except for the Gorilla - he’s just another plush who likes to hang with the Muppets) are puppet forms. The Fraggles are small on my hand, meant for kids, but I love them anyway. I hope to have the major 5 one day. Before they sell out.
My other plush. As you can see, there are several of Kermit. The rather unusual one on the right was made for me years ago by a dear friend and he’s the first Kermit I ever had. Like I said, there were none around to purchase. So it was thrilling to receive him. The others I either bought or received as gifts over the years and the Animal was a recent Kijiji find. I figure I should branch out a bit in the plush world... (wait there are a few more to come...) You can also see my Kermit notebook and a watercolour that I did, based on a scene from The Fantastic Miss Piggy. I’m trying to do one drawing a day - I’m not good, but I hope to one day be acceptable in my own eyes. I’m no Dave Hulteen or Amy Mebberson, but I’m inspired by them.
This is the start of my bookshelf that holds the bulk of my collection. We’ll start at the floor. Three old VHS tapes. Fun. I still have a machine I can play them on - so why get rid of them? The box is from my Whatnot kit that I ordered from Amazon - again they were available at Toys R Us, but only in the states. You’ll see him in a moment. The Frog lamp is not strictly Muppets, but I’m sure you can see why I had to have him. And I figure that Babe has enough of a Henson connection to live on this shelf. That’ll do pig. That’ll do.
Shelf #2: Most of the books are here. Of Muppets and Men is not on the shelf right now as I’m reading it, but here you cans see: No Strings Attached, The Muppet Show Book, Jim Henson’s The Works, Tale of Sand (love it!), Doodling with Jim Henson, (also love it, buy I haven’t made a mark in it yet, it’s too beautiful), The Art of the Muppets, a Muppets comic and a Fraggle rock comic, then Jim Henson’s Doodle Dreams. Behind that you can see my sheet music of Rainbow Connection, and a Muppets song book, plush the Fraggle Rock DVD set and a VHS copy of Muppet Classic Theatre and Muppet TI. Hours of enjoyment on this shelf.

Shelf #3: More childlike, shall we say? First off - My Life as a Furry Red Monster - purchased for me for $1 by a good friend. Seems to be the jumping off point for Being Elmo - a lovely read. Behind it is a punch out book to make the Muppet Stage - but I’ve not punched it out and I probably never will. Also my program from Carnegie Hall, (sigh...) And the other book is a music book for Muppet Christmas Carol. I searched for that for years!!! And then in front you can see all manner of little collectable items, mostly Kermit, but also the Muppet Babies and a delightful singing Cookie Monster. Push his tummy and he La, La, Las for you.
Shelf #4: Another area devoted to Kermit. The People magazine was purchased after Jim’s death and I’ve kept it all these years and I will keep it. Of course you can see Frogs are Funny, It’s Not Easy Being Green and Before You Leap. The Kermit drinking bottle snapped the clasp, so I don’t use it, but rather display it. The little box that has Kermit’s face on it is a Kermit in the box! I don’t remember where I got it. Some gift shop somewhere and I remember it being expensive for me at the time. As you turn the handle, music plays and eventually Kermit pops out. I wish it played The Muppet Show theme or Rainbow Connection or anything Muppety, but instead it plays the typical Jack in the box music. Ah well. You can’t have everything.
Top shelf: The media shelf. With Rowlf - love him. Had him for ages. The funny little frog there is a wind up toy. I thought this a good place for him to live and there’s the Kermit pez. :-)
On the top of the bookcase are a few more plush. My Walter & Gonzo - who traveled from the NYC Disney store to live with me, My Whatnot puppet - with no hair at the moment - his exchangeable parts are behind him and one little cat sock puppet made by one of my students. This was one of the best and simplest puppets made this year and she said I could keep it. I was so pleased.
My Muppet Movie Album and GMC glass set. Like my Muppet Show Book and Muppet Babies, these are items that I once owned and had to reacquire due to loss, breakage, or sun damage. Muppet Baby Kermit used to ride in my car on the dash - until his skateboard was no longer red.
Muppet Scrabble charms. These are lovely and not expensive. I hope to have a silver chain for each one of these one day - I can wear them to school to show kids my mood for the day. Animal when I’m dangerous, S & W when I’m grumpy, K & P when I’m feeling loving... you know? I wore Kermit recently to the Just for Laughs Festival in Montreal!
Some Muppet clothing. The boxers and Animal shorts are my husband’s, but I bought them for him, so I include them in the collection. It’s still stuff that’s around me, right?
Muppety Make-up, etc. 2 items from Piggy’s Mac Collection. I didn’t order the false eyelashes as they were so expensive, I felt. And how often would I wear them? And then, of course, the OPI Muppets Collection in it’s entirety! That was not easy to acquire. But I love each and every colour and I’ve used them all. Rainbow Connection (on the right end) was worn to JFL in Montreal. I’ve got to use these things to justify their purchase!
Muppet charm bracelet - incomplete as of yet. This is delicate and special. The artist will make these charms and I’ve currently asked her for four more: Piggy, Dr. Teeth, Walter and Rowlf. I’m not sure who after that, as I need to see how crowded it gets.
Then there’s this. Sorry it’s a little out of focus. My husband made this for me. It’s a simple little coffee mug that allows you to put in your own picture
He made two pictures for me. I love it.
And to give you an idea of the Muppet room - here’s a shot from the stairs that need to be removed so a new wall can go it. It’s a cheerful place to work, I think. I hope to find just the right Muppety floor rug one day. I think that would finish it off nicely. The large blank wall is just crying out for some Muppet art work - but that will have to come over time. In the mean time, there’s always Kijiji and ebay.





The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier, muppetmindset@gmail.com

2 comments:

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