Monday, January 7, 2008

Saturday's Mail

On Saturday, I received some mail that got me excited about baby stuff again. One was Pottery Barn Baby. I usually don’t like PB Kids because it seems slightly unimaginative for the price, BUT I really do like what they are doing with silhouettes and birds and dotty fabrics.

Next, my Cookie Magazine, which I always like, but I often find myself rolling my eyes at some of the articles. Case in point is this article about a boy who wanted to (and was allowed to) wear a pink embroidered sundress to preschool. Ok, wait a sec until I can climb onto my soapbox…there. Here’s where the eye rolling comes into play. I am not an uptight mother with gender roles, so that isn’t the issue. My whole thing is that kids are kids, not mini adults. I do not want to teach my child that they can do or say whatever they want whenever they want. There is a fine line between this and encouraging independent thinking. It should be also stated that I am not going to be one of those parents who let my kid wear orange pajama bottoms, a tutu, and a purple shirt out of the house. I don’t care if I have to strap them down and force them into regular clothes, tough sh*t. I’M the mom, YOU’RE the kid. Ok, off my soapbox. Hope I didn’t offend anyone.

I do love Cookie for their love of Etsy and vintagey things. Found this article on nesting. And also their Family Paris Travel Guide is loverly. Although France was stressful enough for the two of us alone, so I don’t know how people do it with kids in tow, but more power to ‘em. Loved this picture of a carousel in the courtyard of a Paris hotel. Sigh.


Sarah and Jack said...

Ok, is it just me or did you think the parent calling to ask if her kid needed a t-shirt or a dress was actually being snarky and not considerate?

Anyway, I am not letting Jack wear a dress to school. Period. He can wear pink shirts, or even pink shorts (if they are pink boy shorts, in the boys section, there I said it), but my kid is not wearing a dress to preschool.

Sometimes I think that parental permissiveness has gone WAY too far. LOL said...

My Jack went through a pink phase,too - we bought him pink polo shirts and I seem to recall a pink hat or something. Having an older sister, Jack would want to dress up in her princess costumes and wear nail polish just like the person he adored most in the world - his big sister. It was all he knew (though he didn't go out in public dressed like that). As he's grown up, his preferences have turned more towards the socially approved "masculine", but I was never too concerned about it (although his daddy had a slightly different opinion on the matter!). Even in a tutu, he's always been all boy!

Anonymous said...

I've questioned the dress thing back and forth and haven't come to a conclusion. My little boy loves pink-- probably because his older sister does and he thinks she is just great.

As for the tutu, orange pants and purple shirt? Why not? Part of being a child is coming into your own identity and what better a way to express yourself than through dress?

In our house, as long as it is weather appropriate and appropriate for the occasion (the tutu would not make it to a funeral, that's for sure), I think it is in harmless fun.

royaloaker said...

Anonymous, I don't bite! I welcome other's opinions. :)

As for tutu/orange pants/purple shirt, my kids will have ample opportunity to express themselves throughout their lives-- they don't need to look like they just stepped off the turnip truck. Would you let them wear a tutu/orange pants/purple shirt to school? Because I think that would just as distracting as a dress.

It's just my thing-- Q doesn't leave the house without her hair combed or with mismatched clothing. Another thing-- I never leave the house without makeup! We all have our things-- it's just one of mine.

Anonymous said...

Love your blog!
I skimmed the article and thought it a bit crazy. But, I don't think there's anything wrong with letting a child decide what to wear.
My four year old daughter chooses her own clothes. To me, it's part of learning to be think for herself and not be too caught up in what everyone else wants her to wear/look like/etc. If she's looking for my approval at age 4, I don't want that to translate into looking for a peer's approval at age 12. (That said, when she's a teen, I will certainly veto inappropriate clothing!)

I think that's different from a child leaving the house "unkept". Our girls are always clean (their clothes and theirselves), hair and teeth brushed, etc. But, my oldest often wears crazy pink tights with a red skirt and a purple shirt. Why not? It certainly doesn't cause a commotion at her (Montessori) school. Most adults just laugh at her "creativity," and the other children don't even notice her clothing--unless it's to compliment a sparkly tee. I'll admit I resisted at first...or at least cringed...but now her sense of "style" makes me smile.
I don't know that my permissiveness has gone too far (no dress up clothes are worn in public), but I've decided to choose my battles.

All of that said (pardon the soapbox!), if I had a boy, I wouldn't let him wear a dress to school. There's a certain stigma in society I wouldn't want to expose my small child to. It's one thing for adults to grimace at a child's creative color combinations, quite another for an adult to sneer at a boy in a dress. At least, I think that's what I would think...if I had a boy.