Let’s just say she did NOT, “Say Yes to the Dress,” when we got dressed this morning.
Sometimes you buy a dress four sizes too big, because there was something about it you just HAD became infatuated with, like this one, and some outfits you buy two sizes too small because they SPEAK your thread language, and you PRAY they fit at least once or twice, like the peanut outfit on Lo the other day. These are fashion girl probs of a mama with girls. I am so blessed I even get to have the opportunity to dress them for the few years I have eeked out so far!
I already see their tastes and opinions taking hold! Mostly though, we all agree and LOVE their closets, but they have their favorites and I have mine. Of course I bought all of it, so I LIKE everything, but for some reason when they play favorites, over and over, and OVER, and resist more fashion-y pieces it drives me bonkers. Well, it used to. Since Rem started pre-K last year, I have somewhat surrendered the fashion card. NEVER dress them in their best for school days, UNLESS you know it’s a meeting or event or YOU will be present, or don’t care!
I am having fun with the challenge of shopping for Rem now that she is in KINDER and I can see she is maturing and they all just want to dress like the other KIDS at the end of the day. Hearts, unicorns, glitter, pink, purple. I get it. Whenever I see tots her age in Blog Land, or Instasphere, wearing linen ballooned trousers that look like bed sheets wadded up and a matching elf cap bonnet, bonnets shouldn’t, needn’t, be worn past the first couple of months, and that’s IF you live in a cooler climate that requires the extra head warmth, clearly I am not, nor ever was a BONNET mama, and I think to myself, does this child REALLY love what they are wearing? Can they play in THAT? Is that FUN for a kid? No. I know because I HAVE TWO TODDLERS and NO, they don’t want to wear buttons or pleats or jumpers or jeans, or anything that needs to be dry cleaned, well maybe some dresses, and NO they don’t have YOUR style and TASTE. They’re KIDS! So what do I do about this dress below? The dress that I personally find something very interesting about, and my mom is probably icking at right now because she and I have different opinions on clothing choices too? Well, I decided to archive her. The dress, not my mom. Document her. Photograph her. Enjoy her for myself for thirty minutes, and then retire her. Sigh…
I didn’t have a plan on WHERE I wanted to go for the thirty minutes spare I had in between picking up Rem before Lo today, but when I passed these sparkly yellow leaves glittering in the wind, and this long white fence, I pulled over for an impromptu photo shoot/nature walk with my love. YES, I wanted to get this dress pixelated in some way, but was NOT planning on ever finding such a perfect little place to highlight her. My girl, not the dress.
We found these MAGIC cards! The game Magic, not a trick. I KNOW this card game because my brothers and Dad used to play this growing up! I can’t tell you the premise or rules anymore, but we had so much fun walking along and finding these MAGIC cards in the weeds today. So random. Treasure!
Further on we came across these big rocks holding back water. My little adventurer had no qualms about hopping from one boulder to another. She kneeled down at one point and was nearly head first in this trickling runoff water. I hopped onto the one across from her and she said, “Ew! What kind of bug is that?” That “bug” looked like a craw fish or scorpian or SOMETHING- GROSS! It was the same color as the rocks that the water was running over. That little guy got us both moving out there in a jiffy! We found Pussy Willows standing in the reeds nearby! I pointed them out to her and she laughed and said, “they look like hotdogs! It’s my first time seeing these!” She’d never seen them before, only in book illustrations, so we both shared that first together!
Well, this dress was fun while it lasted! An entire six hours! It was back to the two-way glitter kitty tee and biker shorts when we got home; we ALL LOVE getting into cozies as soon as we get home!
Grabbing moments like these with each of my girls when I can, even if it’s in a random turn off on the side of a road for twenty minutes finding cards and spotting water bugs, means so very much to ME. I know we get some fun photos out of it while we play and discover, but my FAVORITE is to pretend to be a little leaf on the tree and just let them lead as I shutter away. At one point Remy plopped down in the sad and was poking around in it and she put her tiny palm against the warm grains. I let her get down in the sand. I try not to stop them from being themselves, unless it is UNSAFE, and I like to let them have a longer leash to get into things. We point things out to each other that the other might be missing. I hope that as they grow older they continue to have JOYFUL, curious, creative spirits. One tricky lesson we have recently ran into, one month into Kindie are boundaries, and spacial awareness. Social development and growth.
There are so many unforeseen things that pop up once your kiddos start school. MORE than just the wardrobe rebellion. All of a sudden, your HAPPY, unguarded, FREE adventurer is being bridled and restrained and defined. Slowly. No more crafting. The art projects sent home stopped cold turkey for us. Homework trickled in like a leaky faucet, and it doesn’t ever stop. For a few hours a day, indoctrination of ideologies of a “school system,” start to seep in, whether or not you permit it. My JOB as their mother is to delicately and gracefully, DO THE DANCE, of playing both advocate, cheerleader and protector of who they ARE as tiny people, and YET, you are also now in a very vulnerable, challenging role where you also have to support and understand their care takers, instructors and educators and be empathetic that they are trying to teach your child, and twenty-some other kiddos, certain curriculum and bench markers, all the while also having to stay within rigid confines and perimeters that may also interfere with their teaching as much as it has the learner. SUCH conflicting messages, for your child and for YOU and for everyone. I am still flashing it all out. On one hand the banners are slathered with encouraging and peppy mottos of self awareness and pride, “Be YOU! You are SPECIAL! You are Fabulous! Share who you are!” And just across the hall staring that peppy pink paint in the eye are the antagonistic banners warning the pep to keep in step. “Line up here! Return this book back by then or… This needs to be done by Friday! Can you lower your voice? Please sit down. Please sit on your bottom. Let’s save that thought for AFTER class.” In so many ways we muffle, we silence, we quiet their ideas, their thoughts, their flow of energy- verbal and physical- and we change them. I am not sure I am drinking the Kool Aid on it, guys.
Anyway, a little deep for a style post, and you probably think I am a monster for forcing her to wear this dress, and maybe even a big hypocrite after you read that last paragraph, if you made it that far, but the truth is, Rem actually did end up owning the look and WEARING this dress and she made it her own. If I knew she’d have a bad day over a dress, I wouldn’t even try to sway a little.
Who knows, she may end up wanting to keep her in circulation like she has with a few of my other faves…. Oh my sweet, free Rem, mommy loves you as much as the disrupted state of that wonky, egg-shaped number we talk about at night!
And ending with- it’s FINALLY falllllll!