The Ultimate in Doll Therapy
We are taking orders for Serenity Babies, dolls that promise to take doll therapy to a whole other level. These dolls are handmade, and at the risk of sounding clichéd, by craftsmen using only the finest materials. Here are some of the specifications that qualify the Serenity Babies as newborns:
- Sculpts (the head, arms, and other parts of the doll that show and look like skin) are made of heirloom quality soft German vinyl.
- Hair is alpaca or mohair, and micro-rooted. Micro-rooting is a meticulous process whereby individual strands of hair, or a few strands at a time, are rooted into the dolls scalp. (Alpaca is so fine that it would be almost impossible to root one strand at a time.)This method ensures the most realistic results. Hair can be gently washed, brushed and styled.
- Multiple coats of a special heat set paint result in very realistic skin tones (you can see that from the pictures) — the heat-setting makes the finish extremely durable.
- Each doll is carefully weighted with glass beads to feel and move just like a real baby when held. The sensory feedback derived from this feature adds a dimension to doll therapy that is not possible from most other dolls.
The above is not a list of the benefits of doll therapy; this is a list of why these dolls provide a more realistic therapy experience. Read more about doll therapy.
Following is a letter from Mark W. to Cindy, creator of the Serenity Babies. Mark had just received a doll that he was going to gift to an assisted living residence. Baby Doll therapy for people with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God I said the more I stared at this little angel and noticed all the details. The bare foot in one hand and a sock in the other is so cute and childlike. The residents at the assisted living home my grandmother spent the last year and a half of her life at will be so blessed to hold and admire this beautiful angel. She will have the gift to mend a moment of loneliness and spoil a feeling of sadness. To each that hold her will pretend she’s real but the feelings thoughts memories and emotions they experience are genuine. I will be honored to gift her to a wonderful home for its residents and staff. This little girl runs on our imagination and not on batteries. That’s what makes us feel young again. Thank you Cindy for the picture and the updates. Is it a possibility that all 3 dolls could be finished by May 1st? I have relatives coming from Washington May 2nd to sprinkle my grandmother’s ashes in Duluth. I would like to show off the dolls before family heads back home.
Serenity Babies are Not to be Believed!
If you have any questions, please call us toll free at 877/300.3021! (U.S. and Canada) or Contact Us.
These Dolls Are Not Mass Produced
Because each Serenity Baby doll is made special, it takes about three weeks, maybe four, to get once the doll is ordered. Think of it as a short gestation period rather than a longer-than-normal wait for your order. We will start carrying a limited selection of these that will be available immediately, but you will not be able to choose features; on the other hand, they will be very cute!Also because each doll is made individually, by hand, no two dolls are the same. The dolls pictured in the store are representative; each one pictured is similar to the doll that will come to you when you select that doll to purchase.
The following is a partial transcript of a recent television interview, Feb 27, 2013. Trish Van Pilsum of KMSP-TV in Minneapolis, MN, talks to Cindy and Daryl Lindbloom, the makers of the Serenity Babies:
Peace comes from calm cuddling of one of the babies born at the Loving Hearts Nursery in St. Joseph, and something magical happens each time one of those babes is brought out into the world.
They are so convincing that they can fool a genuine model — and his mother. They’re so surprisingly realistic that few realize they are actually lifelike dolls.
In fact, the serenity babies are so like the real thing, it’s hard to resist the urge to talk to them.
“Hi sweetheart,” said Florence, who lives at the Johanna Shores Senior Community in Arden Hills. “Do you see me?”
While Florence knows she is not holding a real baby, that doesn’t matter.
“Let’s see if you can do a little patty cake,” she coos at the baby.
The therapists at the elderly care facility, which bought five serenity babies for the residents to share, say it only takes an instant for the babe to bring out joy.
“The instant you put it in their arms, they are cooing and awing,” Nancy said. “It reaches down in them somewhere and it pulls out that feeling of joy.”
But that joy gestates slowly. Cindy and Daryl Lindbloom build the dolls in what they call a nursery, not a studio — even though what they create is art.
“Some people call it a craft,” Daryl Lindbloom said. “I think when you take it to this level, it’s art.”
The man who is more inclined toward engines paints with precision that tickles just to watch as he creates what he calls 3-D interactive art. He starts with the skin tone. After drying in the oven, the detail will come on another day.
Little veins in the skin get blended as layers go over it, and it’s so precise that your eyes will swear the doll is a real baby until you touch it.
Even then, the weighted limbs make the dolls move in a lifelike way when they’re scooped up. The Lindblooms use fine glass beads inside nylons to create the effect, and each one is unique.
“No two of them are alike,” Daryl Lindbloom explained. “It gives each one their own little personality.”
Little personalities are something the Lindblooms know a lot about. They had three of their own children and fostered many others. In the 80s, the couple cared for infants of teen mothers until the babes were ready to go to permanent homes.
“You cry when they leave, but you know they are going to a great place,” Cindy Lindbloom said. “Just seeing the happiness on the adoption people’s faces, that made me happy.”
It’s a bit like that with the serenity babies too.
For some at the Johanna Shores Senior Community, memories don’t come so easily any more — but something about the babies in the memory care unit that revives something special.
“There is a change and they start reminiscing about their babies, about when they were babies, when their siblings were babies,” Nancy explained.
Though Roger can’t recall whether he combed his hair in the morning, seeing the serenity baby helps him hear sounds from long ago.
“The baby songs my wife used to sing to my five kids come back to my memory,” he said. “She made it up, I’m sure.”
The therapeutic potential is clearly there.
“For women, it raises our oxytocin, and the oxytocin level is known as the ‘happy hormone’ or the ‘comforting hormone,’” Cindy Lindbloom said. One woman who had lost a baby was drawn to the dolls, along with a young man.
“The guy got tears in his eyes. He said it’s just so touching,” Cindy Lindbloom recalled. “He goes, ‘Yeah, we can’t have any more children.’”
While some see the dolls as collectibles, the Lindblooms really love to see their work delivered to the arms of those who need the feeling only holding a baby can bring.
“It’s hard to describe,” Daryl Lindbloom said. “I think it’s something inside us, just the need to nurture something.”
The Lindblooms know that feeling is a very real thing — even if the baby is not.
You can order your Serenity Baby at our store, but because these precious dolls are all made to order, it’s best to call us (toll free in the U.S. and Canada) at 877/300.3021. If we don’t answer, please leave a message. You can also send us a message by filling out this form. Either way, leave your contact information and we’ll get back to you. In fact, if you place an order online we will contact you anyway by phone or email. It’s important to talk with you before we begin the process.
A big part of the reason that we absolutely insist on having a conversation with you about your Serenity Baby is that you can choose the characteristics you want:
- Sculpt – that’s the head, hands & feet
- Hair Color
- Eye Color