Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Leave Barbie alone

Today on Facebook a friend recommended a blog for moms of girls. There were some interesting posts about raising girls---how to boost their self esteem, teaching them modesty in their dress (because really, do 5 yr olds need to have low rise jeans?? I kid you not!), knowing who their friends are, encouraging their talents, etc.

I was on board with a lot of what was said until the blogger started in about Barbie.

There’s Barbie who retains the title of most-physically impossible physique after fifty years. If she were an atual woman, her breasts would be so heavy she’d be forced to walk on all fours! (I’m not kidding.) . The only thing bigger than Barbie’s…ere, figure…is her sales “figures.” (Oh, how I wish I could change that!) Here’s the deal: when our daughters play with cute, non-sexual dolls they tend to let imaginative play loose. They role-play and create, giving muscle to their executive function (which controls value formation). But when our daughter’s play with dolls that have a more seductive nature, they tend to be more confined in their imaginative play. It generally leans toward “seduce the boy.”

While I agree that Barbie's figure is physically impossible (unless you're Heidi Montag), I honestly don't know anyone who has played with or who is currently playing with Barbie, that wants to look like her. Maybe girls want silky straight hair like her or a closet filled w/trendy clothing like Barbie, but her figure? Come on, give us a little credit here.

When Barbie came onto the market 50 years ago, there were very few options for women. You went to school, got married, had babies. End of story. Maybe you worked for a little while. Very few women had careers.

Along came Barbie & suddenly little girls had a doll who was a flight attendant. Raise your hand if you had the Barbie Friendship airplane. I did. It wasn't until I had friends who were flight attendants did I learn the job really wasn't glamorous.

Barbie was an astronaut, a veterinarian, a teacher, a doctor, a fire fighter, a chef, scuba diver, animal trainer, a nurse, a dentist, an ambassador, a presidential candidate, a life guard, a Royal Canadian Mountie, a ballerina, a photographer, and a new anchor. She's also represented the Army, Air Force, Marines & Navy. (Thank you, Wikipedia, for your oh-so-thorough list!)

Sunshine's at an age where she's aware of romantic love. Well, as much as a 6 year old can be. Her Barbies have "married" Ken or the Prince dolls. They have children. Have I missed something or is it so awful for children to play "family"? I know when I was little my cousins & I would play family. Since I was the youngest (by 6 months), I was always the baby. Is it wrong to emulate what you see at home when you have two parents who hug & kiss one another & their child? BTW, Sunshine's dolls? There's no seducing going on. Sunshine's friends dolls? No seducing there either.

What's next? Disney Princesses? Doesn't every little girl want to believe in princesses when they're little?

Monday, August 30, 2010

New projects

Sadly none of them are knitting.

When Sunshine was a baby I saw this doll house book case in the Pottery Barn kids catalog. So overpriced but so cute. Hunter started this in the spring & got it finished (with help on the painting from Sunshine) in late May. Here's how it looked when it was finished & now as it's being used.

It's a home away from home for Sunshine's dolls. The Barbie townhouse is in her room so her dolls "travel" to the dining room to visit this house.

Our next project is to repair some damage that was done to Hunter's grandparents china cabinet. Luckily, it's just on the right hand corner of the top of the bottom but will require removal of some paint, sanding & refinishing. I love this piece & am excited how well it coordinates with our kitchen table & chairs.

The dining room is our last room to be updated. If you look at the first pic of the doll house book case you can see striped wallpaper below the chair rail, as well as a border above it. We're in the process of removing the border & wall paper and will paint the walls a similar burgundy. I think *wink*. I keep thinking that I'm going to repaint the living room & might use the same color in the dining room.

Hopefully we'll be putting hardwood flooring in the dining room, use it as a dining room & use the breakfast nook as an office area.

And lastly, I'm on a quest for the perfect tv/media stand. Hunter got our tv mounted on the wall so the tv stand we'd been using is suddenly too small & out of proportion. I found one at pier 1 that I liked but Hunter doesn't share my love. It's more money than I'd like to spend so I'm scouring all the thrift/antique stores in town in hopes of finding something that we can refinish. The Bassett sideboard that I bought last Christmas @ Gina's junk & thrift store (so totally the best kept secret for amazing pieces of furniture) has been refinished & looks great. I'm hoping to find something equally as awesome for below the tv.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Star light, star bright

last star I see tonight.

Since we moved into this house, I discovered a star right outside one of our bedroom windows. Each night as I'd close the drapes I'd see it up in the sky shining down to the top center pane of our window.

Lately, it's been so cloudy and/or hazy at night that my star's not visible. Is it on summer vacation? When will we have a clear night again? Does it miss seeing me looking up at it?

Come back little star, I miss you!

(obviously this isn't the view from my window, but it is lovely!)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Hair today. . .

I had my hair cut yesterday while I was shopping south of Atlanta. Total impulse thing----I've been rough with my hair this summer. The heat/sun, chlorine & salt water from the pool, styling tools & not enough deep conditioning. While Hunter sweetly says my hair looked fine, I felt it looked awful. Fried awful.

I stopped into an Aveda salon in Newnan & was looking at some products that I wanted to buy when it struck me to ask if they took walk in appointments. They did & I was lucky enough to get a great junior stylist.

Now, I know some people cringe when they hear "junior" stylist. They don't have the experience, they don't know what they're doing, NEWBIE! They don't really bother me because in a lot of salons, they're still under a lead/training stylist's wing and their work is inspected. Let me just add, that for straightening services, I definitely want someone who's done then for a good long time & on many, many, many heads! But a hair cut? I'm fine w/ the junior stylist.

As we were discussing the Aveda products I use we took a little trip down memory lane to the list of hair products past. The first Aveda products I used: madder root shampoo & conditioner in the late 80's/early 90's. The Sap Moss, Clove shampoo/conditioner Brilliant, & Shampure lines followed.

A jump to Redken, Sebastian, Alterna, Vidal Sassoon (the cherry smell always got me!) Artec, Chi, Biosilk, Tigi/ Catwalk, Joico, Nexxus, Paul Mitchell, my salon's in house brand. Phew. Now a return to Aveda. The funny thing, I can remember where I lived when I used these brands. And when I went back to some of them. If I thought really hard, I could put them in chronological order. But that would be really weird.

Sunshine's winding down her 2nd week of school. The other night as I sat with her at the kitchen table as she did her homework, I was wowed by how much she knows already & how she worked to solve the problems (we were doing math). Her penmanship is improving, although since she's my child she could be doomed!

Hunter started classes on Monday so I have 2 in school! He had sticker shock when it came to buying text books (why don't people listen to me about things??? I told him they were spendy!) He's getting used to his schedule after a couple add/drops & is in the early stages of earning his RN. I'm so proud of him & think he'll make a great nurse!!

Today I'm getting my clothes (Sunshine's old ones) ready for the Just4Kidz consignment sale next month. Everything's been entered on their website so now I need to hang them & when we get the okay, print out my price tags. Then it's lunch w/ the girls & heading to Fresh Market with Sushine after school. It's incredibly humid & we're supposed to have thunderstorms, so we'll see!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

It's sign up time!

Sign ups have started for the Revenge of Dish Rag Tag! I've done this challenge the last couple years & it's very fun. Sign up today!!


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The early bird gets a lot done!

Just because I personally don't eat worms!

There might be something good to this 8 am school thing. Before leaving for school I started the dishwasher. When I got home, I walked Smitty, did 2 loads of laundry & entered about 50 items onto the just4kidz consignment website for next month's sale. I also ran to the post office & commissary. Had a treat of sushi for lunch & some time to watch Flipping Out reruns on Bravo.

Tonight we have our 1st grade orientation---basically what to expect from the school year & to meet again w/ the teacher. Who we already really like as she was one of the kindergarten teachers last year. And is super nice!

Fresh Market is opening a new store here tomorrow & I'm supposed to go check it out w/ a friend. Perhaps Publix will have some competition for my love?

Monday, August 9, 2010

1st day of 1st grade!

Here is Sunshine this morning as we left for her 1st day of 1st grade. We walked her to her classroom and found several friends from last year in the hallway waiting to go into their classes. After a few pictures inside her class, she told me "Mommy, it's time for you to go". I'm proud to say that I haven't cried today. After uploading some pics on FB, I went to meet some friends for coffee & 1st day stories. We started the tradition last year as weepy Kindergarten moms. This year, all eyes were dry.

As I was uploading our 1st day pic, I thought about other 1st day pics. Here they are:

Sunshine in Aug. 06 going to Pre-school for the very first time. She cried a little that morning (mostly because of the other kids who were crying) and I know I did. I remember sitting the orientation & thinking "What are you doing??? Go get her & bring her home!" It turns out preschool was great for her, and for me as it would become the only time I would have to myself when Hunter deployed in spring '07.

Sunshine in Aug. '07. Hunter had been deployed for 5 months so he missed this first day. Sunshine made so many friends in this class & we absolutely adored her teacher. She was wonderful with the children & took the time to work w/ Sunshine after Hunter came home for R & R (and went back to Iraq).

Pre-K in Aug. '08. Again, we were blessed with great teachers and with a great, great, super wonderful group of parents. Both Pre-K classes did so much together outside of school. We had almost-weekly play dates, mommy lunches, you name it. Even the teachers commented on how involved everyone was & what a sense of family there was between the classes. Ironically, this was the first year that we didn't walk Sunshine to her class. She requested to use the car line from the first day.

Kindergarten, Aug. '09. SO much drama before this day. Sunshine didn't want to leave her pre-school, her Pre-k teacher, her old friends, you name it. The first day she found a friend from pre-school & held his hand as she walked into school. Parents were encouraged not to go to the classrooms so we didn't. Luckily, we didn't need to.

Here's to a wonderful year, regardless of whenever your 1st day is!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Phineas & Ferb lied!

There is not 104 days of summer vacation. There were 74. Here's how we spent them:

Taking a ferry ride from VT to NY on our way home from our Vermont trip. Sunshine lost her 2 front teeth while we were in Vermont. Good thing Mommy had the sense to bring her little tooth box from the Tooth Fairy!

Playing on the beach & in the waters of Lake Champlain. Chilly, chilly Lake Champlain.

We also spent a lot of time at the pool where we saw some friends from school & made some new friends. Sunshine's swimming improved so much this summer. No need for floaties, she swims underwater like a mermaid, & dives down to retrieve things. Yesterday she lost a swim race b/c the boy she was racing against realized he was losing to her so he reached over & pulled her hair. His cousins told on him & his grandfather put him in time out for close to 30 min!

Reuniting with an old friend & discovering that you both love sand boxes, squirt guns, cartoons & hot dogs.

Being bummed that he doesn't appreciate a pink bedroom, barbies & doll houses.

Deciding ballet camp is a lot of fun & that you do want to take lessons (again) in the fall.

Tomorrow is the first day of first grade. Friday was spent doing some back to school clothes/school shopping with a friend & her girls (Sunshine's friends). Today we're enjoying a lazy Sunday morning & will go swim this afternoon. Hopefully Sunshine & I can get in a back-to-school manicure as a treat for her.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Happy Birthday to my sweetie!

So why the pic of Hunter as a present?

Out of all the gifts I've received in my life, Hunter is among the best. He puts up with me & my nuttiness (my boycotting Winn Dixie over the prosciutto incident of '07, my refusal to eat tomatoes in sandwiches or salads, my love of all things olive related, etc).

He's a wonderful husband & a great daddy to Sunshine. I feel safe in his arms & his hugs can make the day sunny again. I'm willing to bet Sunshine would say the same. When he puts her to bed & sings to her my heart melts & I fall in love with him all over again.

He's a gentleman in the truest sense of the word which is rare these days. Sunshine & I are lucky he's ours.

Happy Birthday, sweetie. You are loved more than you will ever know! xox