Today my mother took the kids shopping for their birthday presents. I told Lucy she could pick out whatever she wanted and then run it by Grammy. And then I told her no nail polish, no high heels, nothing Bratz, nothing with buttons that sing when you push them, no more baby dolls, no tarty costumes, nothing with lead or magnets or trampy innuendo and preferably no more princess castles with 500 removeable pieces because I'm running out of vacuum cleaner bags.
So Lucy did what she does best and picked out a whole bunch of things in the Under $8 Range. Studley picked out a book and some footie pajamas. My mother piled all of it in the cart and away they went. It took us an hour and a half. And then we came home and within minutes of unpacking, Studley cut the hair right off Lucy's Cinderella paperdoll. She took it bravely. Cinderella has sort of a Sinéad O’Connor thing going on now.
Because I am also good at these things, I threw some stuff in the cart while mom wasn't looking. I got Hop on Pop and a game called Charoodles. Charoodles will have to wait till the kids are older (although I love the idea of rigging it so Chris and I are sitting on the living room floor playing something like Pretty Pretty Princess by ourselves when unexpected visitors show up. He'll be wearing the tiara).
Hop on Pop is for now, because Lucy's reading a bit and I thought it would be fun to read together. She could read the big words and I could narrate the little ones. It would be like a duet.
Lucy: THREE TREE
Me: Three fish in a tree. Fish in a tree? How can that be?
Good, right? Except that she's just learning to read and although she's doing great it takes about 20 minutes for her to read "all tall, all small" and by page 27 I was ready to throw myself on the floor.
We decided that Hop on Pop is a chapter book.
It almost made the Glamor Booty Call Makeover Salon look like it might have been a good option. Except here's the weird thing - although she's been asking for all those Barbies and Ponies and Plastic Princess Mermaids that her friends have, when it came right down to it she wanted books and puzzles and paper dolls.
The subliminal tapes are working.