Whenever I have an illustration that involves toys, I tend to work in some variation of this little stuffed bear. It's based on the little bear I bought the day we found out my wife, Terri was pregnant with our daughter Hayley. I got the call at work and at lunch, headed over to the local Toys-R-Us. I found this little bear -- a "Nosy Bear" that had a clear plastic, snow-globe sort of snout. You squeezed its tummy and airflow would make a little windmill in the nose turn. The one I got had a red balloon inside, so when you squeeze the bear, the nose turns red.
Hayley still has the little bear. And he makes cameo appearances on Kid Scoop and other places. The one shown here was on our Toys for Tots page last December.