Happy Halloween, 2016

Baguette has never been that into trick-or-treating. From her perspective, Halloween is when you knock on your neighbor’s door, and they answer it–but then they don’t let you in. What’s the point of that?

It’s always been a struggle. Not because it particularly matters to us whether she wants to, but because we want her to understand what it is, and see if she can find a way to make it fun for herself. There would be a parade at her day care that she had to be wrangled through–the teachers made those costumes–and then in the evening we’d try to get her out into the neighborhood.

Each year, it was harder than you’d think. There was the time she refused to wear layers (shirt and tights were fine, but not the elephant part of the costume). After many tears, she decided to wear all of her Elmo clothing. It worked. The next year, she rejected the costume we’d bought her AND the one from day care, finally settling on my shirt worn backward. The year after that, we laid out every costume and clothing item we could think of, and she chose soccer ball fleece PJs–although once she was done with her abbreviated neighborhood circuit, she added Anna’s ball gown from Frozen.

This year, we looked at the restrictions required by the school and settled on gray leggings, gray t-shirt, and elephant headgear (we bought two headbands with ears and a hat). But yesterday I pointed out that she’d spent the week saying “I am a fire fighter” and “I am a doctor,” following a LOT of viewings of Elmo’s World DVDs. And I remembered that at some point, someone had given her a doctor costume. So I unwrapped it, and she instantly fell in love with the idea. She wore it all afternoon, and tried to sleep in it, and put it back on enthusiastically for this morning’s parade at school.

Small girl in scrubs costume running
Paging Dr. Baguette

She was still wearing it when Mr. Sandwich picked her up, and didn’t take it off until they were in the store looking at fire fighter costumes. They brought one home, but its velcro fasteners proved unacceptable. Out of all of the costumes we’d spread across the couch, which one did she pick?

The elephant-ear headband.

So we headed out with our elephant for trick-or-treating, but it turned out that Baguette had no interest in that–she just wanted to go for a walk around the block.

The whole point is to have fun, and for the first time, Halloween was really fun for her.

I couldn’t be happier.

Mixed Messages

As you can see, these were displayed next to each other at Target.

Carters pajamas - boys and girls

I know that the one on the left is sold in the boys’ section of the Carters store, because that’s where I bought them for Baguette. (I don’t know who makes the one on the right, but let’s face it, it could be anyone.)

It’s true, Mommy does like sleep mode–particularly with a child as sleep-resistant as Baguette. But this juxtaposition raises a number of questions for me, as I think it should for all of us.

  • Why, exactly, do princesses not have bedtimes–particularly if Mommy likes sleep mode?
  • Why are girls encouraged to stay up late while boys are encouraged to go to bed?
  • Why is this (as far as I can tell) gender-neutral robot only for boys?
  • Why does Carters stock their gender-neutral clothing only in the boys’ section?

We are not a princess-friendly household. In fact, Mr. Sandwich and I have agreed that we are only willing to use the word sardonically. So when you read the following line, imagine that Han Solo is saying it:

Trust me, Princess, you have a bedtime.