I spent my afternoon strolling through Carriage Crossing with Adam and Dad. A pit stop at the Starbucks inside of Barnes and Noble hydrated us for our walk. The pumpkin spice Frappucino was disappointing [#firstworldproblems], which surprised me seeing as how I guzzle the latte version. Adam thoroughly enjoyed his strawberry lemonade so my overpriced drink venture wasn’t in vain. It’s been years since I stepped foot in Delia*s— huge mistake. Although I’m embarrassed to admit this, my five year old literally had to drag me out of there. Quirky tees and lacy skirts and studded boots, oh my! Typically Sephora is my biggest vice. Yet it was considerably easier resisting the temptation knowing I had my first delivery from Coastal Scents waiting on me at home.
A year ago I wouldn’t have thought an afternoon like this would ever happen. How grateful I am….
[[ HINT: Take your woman to Carriage Crossing, Z. It should be one of your first dates upon your return. She’d love to eat at Firebirds, score some snazzy new wardrobe additions from Delia*s, and make a Build-A-Bear. Please and thank you. ]]
The above photo is a book I found in the children’s section at Barnes and Noble. It made me very uncomfortable. A pretty princess dress with a sparkly crown is one thing….a white gown with a bouquet and veil is an entirely different ballgame. What sort of message does this send to my daughter? That she should aspire to be somebody’s wife and start churning out babies? That her marriage ceremony should be the pinnacle of her existence? Granted, this is not the first [and certainly not the last] offensive product I’ve seen targeting the youngest members of our community. But something about this really rubbed me the wrong way. I voiced my thoughts to the two other moms in the play area. Like me they found the bridal motif quite disturbing.
Dress up and pretend play serve an important role for kids, allowing them to use their imaginations and dream about their futures. But the toys and tools associated with these endeavors plant the seeds of gender inequity in the most impressionable of audiences. Deviating slightly, one of my biggest pet peeves is the McDonald’s Happy Meal. Being asked if I want a ‘girl’ or a ‘boy’ toy frustrates me to no end. Ask me if I want the car or the doll. I know that our society is not equal– there are preconceived gender notions and expectations that date back to the beginning of time– but we as a society need to be cognizant of the messages we’re receiving. Talk to your kids. Use these experiences as teachable moments.
My lone purchase for the day was a book: Not On Our Watch by Don Cheadle & John Prendergast, which examines the world’s complacency to the genocides in Rwanda and Sudan. Don’t I feel like a disgusting human being as I bitch about my seasonal coffee and express my desire to supplement an already overflowing wardrobe. Time to go read about things that actually matter.
With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,