I too had a "Woody" of mine own growing up - it was a cloth rag doll with a yellow rattle in her stomach which was stuffed who I called Lolly. My Lolly dolly was originally a bright pink, but over time her color became more a worn purple and eventually grey as she faded with time (as seen in the photo, taken yesturday - Lolly at age 25/26 - she hasn't aged as well as me!).
I took that doll EVERYWHERE with me - wherever I went, Lolly had to go with me. We slept together, had adventures together... for a time I even took her to school with me, keeping her in my backpack for safe-keeping.
I too lost her a few times, accidentally leaving her at a store and having my mom call and pick her up the next day (those nights without her were tough and I in her absence I had to sleep with ALL my other stuffed animals just to make up for her lack of presence). The worst was when we were traveling home from visiting relatives in Pennsylvania (a 13 hour drive we often made at least once a year back then) and I accidentally left her in a McDonalds at a truck stop along the highway in Ohio! I was devastated and scared I would never see her again, that she was gone for good! Luckily, my parents were able to track down which truck stop McDonalds I had left her at and got the number for it as soon as we got home (how, I have no idea as the internet wasn't really around back then). Within a few days a box arrived and there she was! I was soooo excited to have Lolly back!
A lot of people were sympathetic when they found her whenever I would lose her, citing they couldn't just toss her away as she looked too worn and loved and they knew someone would come calling or looking for her. And they were right! I loved that doll so much!
In the Rookie Mom's post, she talks about having a back-up or a substitute, but that never worked for me. I had relatives who had a bunch of these rag dolls - both girl and boys (the boys were blue), and I had one of each, but they weren't Lolly - instead they were Lolly's siblings and just weren't the same. There was no replacing Lolly.
When it came to cleaning her, as I would sleep and snuggle with her even when I got sick, we eventually had to resort to washing her in a pillow case so she wouldn't break in the washer or dryer, that's how delicate and worn she got to be!
I loved that doll so much! She currently resides safely in my closet at my parent's house, on a shelf with my stuffed Rainbow Brite doll collection.
Joining my stuffed animal posse elite was Thumper, from Bambi.
I recall getting him from one of the Disney vendors when we saw Disney on Ice one year when it came to my town. It wasn't Bambi on Ice, but for some reason they had various Disney character stuffed animals and I wanted Thumper.
With Thumper and Lolly, we had many fun times - I would set up my playroom like a classroom and use my easel as a chalkboard and the 3 of us would play school, with them being my students.
I remember my grandma made him a blue jacket to wear too, one that matched a jacket she also made for my best friend's stuffed raccoon named Rackie. We pretended that Thumper and Rackie were best friends and would often do sleepovers with them - Rackie joining Thumper overnight at my house and Thumper joining Rackie overnight at my friend's house.
Thumper is a bit dirty, but he's still in decent shape - he currently resides on my old dresser in my bedroom at my parent's house, jacket and all!
So, growing up did you have a toy that you would consider to be your "Woody" like Andy did in the Toy Story movies?