Jan 13, 2010

Doll Clothes. Friends? And Sweaters.

If you have ever had a possession that you deeply loved and someone decided to make fun of your treasured possession or say negative things about your treasured possession raise your hand. I know it's tough. It makes you stop and re-evaluate. It rocks your world. Sometimes you continue loving the treasured item no matter what and sometimes you drop that item like a hot potato. It looks like the Baird children may be the poster children for the, "dropping the item like a hot potato plan." Let me tell you all about it.

For Christmas this year Natalie finally got an American Girl Doll. It took me a LONG time to decide to purchase it. The hardest part was knowing that due to funds I could get the doll but no extra outfits. I thought she would play with it more if it had a change of clothes. Luckily, I have a sister named Sarah who has three boys, can sew like nobody's business, and happens to love doll clothes. I knew she was the YW president. I knew she had a very important dinner at her house. I knew she was flying from Atlanta to Park City to ski but I asked her anyway if she would consider sewing Natalie some doll clothes. She did not even hesitate and said yes. So I purchased the doll. The clothes from Aunt Sarah arrived before Christmas, they were beautiful. Aunt Sarah had even gone to the American Girl Doll store in Atlanta for me and purchased 4 pairs of shoes for the doll...including pink Uggs. We were all so excited for Natalie to open the doll and the clothes. It was the highlight of Christmas for all of us since we all knew what she was getting. She of course was excited and carried the doll around for the day, changing it's clothes, tights and shoes.

The part Natalie was most excited about was showing the doll and clothes to her friend. Who also has a doll. Sometime during break Natalie and this friend got together to play. I did not listen to every word they said while they played. I just opened the door, let the friend in and never saw them again :) After the visit I noticed that Natalie put her doll back into the outfit she had originally come in and did not change her clothes anymore. I then noticed if I told her to go get the clothes so we could play with them ( yes, I know the doll is hers but I can not resist the clothes :) that she did not want too. I noticed it but did not dwell on it. A few weeks later I said something out loud about it to the other kids and Joe then declared that he had heard Natalie's friend telling her that the beautiful clothes from Aunt Sarah were dumb and ugly. And apparently that had changed everything for Natalie. I talked to Natalie sometime later and asked her if she liked the clothes from Aunt Sarah and she declared "yes," I then asked her if she thought they were pretty and she said "yes." I asked her what she would do if someone told her they were dumb and ugly and she looked at me like kids do when they realize parents really are magic and know everything :) I did not wait for her answer we just chatted a little bit more about getting hurt feelings and letting our friends decide what we like and don't like......I mean grown ups never do that :) A few days later I noticed Natalie was back to changing the doll's clothes.

I am having the same problem on a different level with 13 year old Joe. Joe hates to wear coats and when I was shopping for Christmas this year I found a really great black sweater with a half zipper and a small stand up collar. All the sisters approved it and so I purchased it. He put it on on Christmas Day which is always a good sign. He wore it a few times during break, a really good sign that I could possibly have a career as a sweater purchaser for 13 year old boys. I was pretty pleased. But then public school started back up. And Joe went off to school in his plain, possibly preppy looking black sweater. When he came home I noticed it was no longer on his body. I did not ask about it but on the paper route Joe told me that a couple of kids had made comments about his sweater. I asked him if he liked the sweater and he said yes.....and you know where I am going with this don't you?

Our whole lives our views, our likes and dislikes are always changing but I just want my kids to change them for the right reasons not simply because another 7 year old girl or three other 8th grade boys out of a whole world of people declare something is so. Am I unrealistic? :)

The picture on the left is some of the outfits from Aunt Sarah and the picture on the right is the doll in another handmade outfit....but I have been scolded for not combing the dolls hair for her debut on my blog...I regret the error and any trouble it may have caused the family :)


Danielle said...

Wow... those doll clothes are really nice! Your sister did a great job on them! I read your blog with a smile on my face because even as old as I am, I still get my feelings hurt when somebody doesn't like something I've made or done. So I can relate. It's sad that how people view us or what we do is so important. If you come up with any ideas how to get around that, let me know. :))

Mama Parker said...

The clothes are beautiful! This is one of my biggest parenting fears...that my children will be hurt or influenced just because of what others perceive as "cool" or "in". I don't want my kids to go without, but I don't want them to have everything and be materialistic. I want them to know that when they are 30, what someone said when they were 7 won't matter. :( I also want them to appreciate hardwork and handmade!

Karin said...

We deal with the same thing in our house. And its true, it affects girls as well as boys and (when we allow it) adults as well as children. I'm glad I'm not the only one.

Sarah Jones said...

Well we will just see what that neighbor girl thinks when the spring collection for Natalie's doll arrives!