Christmas Wishlist 1981

Christmas Wishlist 1981

This past summer, my family sold the home that belonged to my grandparents, a place I spent some very happy Christmases in. I even wrote a blog post about it back in the fall.

While it was obviously a sad time, it also had it’s bright spots. One of them was discovering the woman kept everything I ever drew or wrote in her home. It was a really warm feeling to be honest.

Seeing as it’s Christmas, I thought I’d share my  wishlist from I’m guessing 1981. Every year I’d cut out pictures from catalogs and present it to her so she’d know what I’m on about. I had posted one from 1979  but  I totally forgot about this one.

As you can see Star Wars was my big thing that year. 

Smurfs? That was total peer pressure, every kid in my class was into them that year and I felt kind of like the odd man out for not having any on my desk.

I did get the At-At from my folks (and it was EPIC!) but I’m not sure I got any of the other stuff, I certainly didn’t get any Smurfs.

Fond memories like this is why I started this site and I really wanted to share it. Thank you.

About The Author

AKA Brian Heiler author of "Rack Toys: Cheap, Crazed Playthings" and co-editor of "Toy-Ventures Magazine". Co-Host of the "Pod Stallions" podcast. Host of the Brick Mantooth Youtube channel, painter, designer, writer, mental health advocate, toy collector, Mego, and Mego Knock-Off enthusiast. I have large feet, ADHD and I live in Canada. Talk toys, not others.


  • Jamie Ghione on December 22, 2017

    Smurfit ! I was totally not them. This really brings back memories.

  • Jamie Ghione on December 22, 2017


  • Wendyvee on December 22, 2017

    You were quite the little "marketer" … included graphics and everything 🙂

  • Anonymous on December 23, 2017

    Motivated by their love, the best parents and grandparents do heart-warming stuff like this. It's a gift to have relatives like this. Found a similar cache three years ago while clearing out my dad's estate… he'd saved every Christmas card I'd ever, ever given him all the way back to the first ones "I" gave him written by my mom.

    Smart move cutting out the ads, btw. That can mean the difference between getting Shockwave, the Decepticons' Military Operations Commander or stuff like Radio Shack's "Galactic Man" aka. KayBee Toys' "Robot Pistol".

    Little kids can be awful franchise junkies and, in their defense, classic Transformers had incredibly cool box graphics.

    While they're both great toys, Galactic Man's trigger location was… embarrassing… to say the least, particularly when noticed by older and more worldly cousins. After that, it's "can't unsee" in the worst possible way. The photographers working for Radio Shack moved heaven and earth, used every trick of perspective to minimize the damage on the box art, but they weren't there on Christmas morning.

  • Hauntedheadful on December 23, 2017

    I am 50 years old and the Missing link I got for Christmas in the 80's is sitting on the coffee table in my den.I have never solved it 100 % but I never really tried too hard.I don't recognize the 2nd item was that a catalogue exclusive maybe?

  • Anonymous on December 23, 2017

    I loved my missing link. And my pryaminx. I think I received them both the same year I got Run Yourself Ragged too. That was a great Christmas!

  • Alan on December 24, 2017

    This was great, Brian, thanks for posting. Every year I find it difficult to get into the Christmas spirit (life is always hectic and moving so fast) but this helped. 🙂

  • Anonymous on December 27, 2017

    This is great, awesome to see what you wanted way back then, please post more next year if you have found other lists or nostalgic stuff… We did have it really good back in the 70's aside from a gas crisis and economic issues here and there, really good memories for me too.

  • JEN on December 28, 2017

    THis is just fantastic.

  • Kevin P on July 27, 2018

    Your penmanship as a child would put most adults to shame today.

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