Tag Archives: cinderella

New Way to Princess

We had two full years of nothing but blue dresses in Rose’s world. I thought we’d finally moved past the wardrobe crisis when on her fourth birthday she agreed with my assessment that 4 year olds wear all the colors. Since then, blue has definitely still been a prominent color but other colors are tolerated. In fact, on a recent shopping trip she actually CHOSE a pink shirt and JEANS. JEANS! Pants used to be strictly protested! My mind was blown.

I was happy Rose’s blue period was over, and then we went to see “Frozen,” which is perhaps the best Disney movie of all time. Rose was really into it and started acting like the ice queen everywhere and saying she needed to wear a crown. Quickly the crown became an all-the-time thing. It took a few painful tangles for me to convince her not to wear the crown to bed.
(Oddly, this is the only recent picture I have of her in this crown.)

She started wearing crowns to school everyday and insisting on wearing them in public.

“I’m pretending to be a princess all the time! I’m Cinderella AND Elsa the Snow Queen AND a kitty princess right now.”


The crowns were in such heavy use that we were plowing through our latest dollar store supply of plastic crowns. Every year only at Halloween, the dollar store has plastic crowns for, of course $1. These crowns usually run at $3-5 at other stores, so I stock up on at least 10 $1 crowns at Halloween and we slowly go through them. Well, this year, thanks to “Frozen,” we’re already down to our last plastic dollar store crown. Those things break if you look at them funny. Since dollar store crowns are out of stock, our crown budget was going to put us in the poorhouse if I didn’t take some serious action.

My choices:
A) Be super tough. Once the crowns are broken, no more crowns until next October! You need to learn some more responsibility with your highly breakable crowns, 4 year old.
B) Set a crown limit. “You can only have ONE crown a month and if you break it, TOO BAD!”
C) Switch to metal tiaras and see if they hold up better.

I chose C.


I was willing to spend up to $15 on a metal tiara, which seemed to be what they were going for online. I figured I’d come out ahead at that price if the tiara could manage to last even 3 months. To my delight, I discovered the child-sized ones at Claires are only about $6! Assuming it makes it 6 weeks, I’m definitely coming out ahead here. We should have switched to metal tiaras ages ago! Plus, it fits her better and actually holds her hair back.

Now she can wear a tiara everyday and live out her princess fantasies even more obnoxiously than ever before.

And why not? She’s 4.

At least she’s wearing all the colors now?


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“Then She Won’t Be Her!”

Rose turned 4 years old today. The first thing she said when she woke up, after exclaiming that there were balloons in her room, was “Am I 4 today? That means my favorite color is red!”

For months, Rose has made it clear that she expects turning 4 to be a big transformation. At 4, she would magically no longer need a potty seat, her favorite color would turn to red and she would like wearing colors that aren’t blue (or red). I’ve told her all along that she doesn’t need to change ANY of her favorite things, but I heavily encouraged no potty seat and wearing other colors.

This afternoon, Rose made the following declaration:
“Now that I’m 4, red is my favorite color and Ariel is my favorite princess. Not Cinderella. And I don’t like pretending to be a kitty anymore. When you are 4, you are not a kitty.”

Upon hearing this, Lily burst into tears. It took her a while to voice what was wrong. “That’s not Rose!”

She was worried that if Rose had all new favorites, Rose wouldn’t be the same person. She wouldn’t know or like this new Rose.

I explained that no matter what Rose liked, she would still be Rose. I also told Rose, again, that just because she was 4 didn’t mean she had to like new things. She could still love Cinderella and blue and being a kitty even if she was 4 (but she couldn’t use the potty without a potty seat or wear only one color).

It wasn’t long before Rose was meowing again. Then she asked to watch Cinderella.

I’m sure someday she’ll move past Cinderella, kitties and the color blue, but something tells me that her announcements today were a bit premature.


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Sweet Potty Seat Bag Freedom!

Most of the last 4 years, I’ve been a bag lady. A potty seat bag lady.

That’s right, everywhere I go, I have to carry not only a giant diaper bag and a baby and hold two bigger kids’ hands, but I also have to carry a potty seat. In a bag. Just like people do.

My first two children had strong public toilet phobias and refused to even try sitting on a toilet without a portable potty seat ring. I have tried every conceivable method to get Rose to go in public without a potty seat, including letting her have an accident, but nothing has worked. She would act like she was dying whenever I tried to hold her on the toilet without a seat. It was a battle too messy to fight.

A few months ago, we stumbled upon a Cinderella bike that was perfect for Rose and didn’t want to wait for her birthday to give it to her, so we decided to use it as a potty seat bribe. We bought that bike in July because we thought for sure it would be the perfect temptation. I mean, if I were a little kid with a Cinderella obsession as large as hers, I’d do just about ANYTHING to get that bike, but we were a no go. In fact, Rose started saying she didn’t want the bike at all. She would walk up to people, show them the picture of the bike I carried for bribe reminders and say “See this bike? I don’t want it.” She even stopped riding the bike she already had in an attempt to show how much she didn’t want a Cinderella bike.
Which, of course she wanted a Cinderella bike! Who wouldn’t? I want one! The bike is AMAZING.

All along, Rose has said she wouldn’t go potty without a potty seat until she was 4. She said “people” COULDN’T until they were 4. I assured her that most kids DID and pointed out all her 3 year old classmates at preschool who used the potty without a potty seat. She was the only kid using a potty seat at school!

Then last week Rose was in a bind. She had to go to the potty really badly while we were at gymnastics. She had left the potty seat in the car and I have a hard and heavy rule with her that if she wants to use the potty seat, she is responsible for carrying it wherever we go. This “responsibility” was put in place to encourage her to stop using the damn seat, but of course it didn’t work and half the time I still ended up carrying that stupid potty seat bag.

When Rose said she had to go potty, I said I had no potty seat so she was going to have to go without because she was almost 4. She would be 4 in 2 weeks so she could do it.

I have used this line many times before and it has never worked before, but for some reason it worked that day. Rose used the potty without a potty seat and was SO proud of herself. She hasn’t used the potty seat in public since. I told her we would wait a week to give her the bike, but on Monday she came home from preschool and announced that she had gone to the potty without a potty seat. We hadn’t even reminded her to try to go without the potty seat at school and we hadn’t asked her teacher to encourage her to do this! She thought to do it all by herself! As we drove home from school, Rose said “I’m so proud of me!”

Me too, kid! Me too!

That night, Rose finally got her magical Cinderella bike, the bike she “didn’t want.” She has been riding it non-stop ever since.

But the real happy ending here is that I don’t have to carry a potty seat bag anymore.

Not for another year at least.

And we did get to give Rose her bike before her birthday like we wanted. One whole week before her birthday. When that kid said she couldn’t use the potty without a potty seat until she was 4, she really meant it!



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“I Don’t Want It”

We recently bought Lily a new bike. It’s one of those fantastic princess numbers with a carriage and streamers in the front. She lucked out and got the bike for no reason at all. We discovered Rose was big enough for Lily’s old bike, which triggered our “should-be-a-birthday-present-but-we-need-it-now” purchase of Lily’s new princess bike so both girls could ride bikes at the same time.

Lily’s old bike is a pink number with ladybugs on it. I bought it at a garage sale and the previous owner had pasted Hello Kitty stickers all over it. It’s a perfectly cute bike, but it truly doesn’t compete with Lily’s new princess bike. Lily’s new bike is especially appealing for Rose, the little girl who is so obsessed with Cinderella that for most of the past 18 months she wouldn’t wear any color but blue. Rose was pretty jealous when we bought home Lily’s new bike. She’s ridden it a few times. Actually, she’s ridden it more than Lily has because Lily is scared of the oh-so-tall height of the new bike. We’re working on it.

I felt bad about Rose not getting her own new bike, but hand-me-downs are an important life lesson. If there’s something perfectly good available for you, you need to use it. Just because your sister gets a new bike doesn’t mean that you also get a new bike. Still, I felt a little guilty that this other bike was so appealing to her. I promised to jazz up her old bike, but then I discovered that this bike existed.

Damn you, Disney. Are you trying to kill me? You just want us to go flat broke, is that it?

When we saw this number, we decided Rose MUST have it. We were worried it was limited edition and ordered it right away. We figured we could give it to her for her birthday, but we didn’t want to wait that long. Her birthday is not until October and my husband and I are SO excited about this bike that we want to give it to her now.

So, we came up with a plan. Rose still uses a portable potty seat in public. It’s driving me crazy, but she refuses to go potty without it. I am still carrying a freaking potty seat bag wherever we go. It’s extremely inconvenient. Any attempt to get her to go potty without it is met with hysteria. She has a real phobia about using the toilet without the potty seat because she once tried to go without it on her own and fell in. No matter how much I promise her that I won’t let her fall in if I’m there to help her, she is still terrified.

I’ve been trying to bribe her with various Cinderella items for months now, but now we have the ultimate bribe. If she stops using the potty seat in public, she gets the Cinderella bike.

We showed her a picture of the Cinderella bike and told her the plan. At first she was very excited, but when it came down to it she was still too scared to use the potty without the seat.

Now she walks around with a printed picture of the bike and shows it to everyone she sees. She goes on and on about how cool the bike is. She asks people if they want the bike. The fact that she loves and wants this bike is undeniable. It was made for her little Cinderella soul.

But here’s what she says “See this bike? Isn’t it beautiful? Look at how it has Cinderella all over it? Do you want this bike? I don’t want this bike because I like my potty seat to keep me safe.”

Come on, Rose! I really really want to give you this bike! It’s sitting at Walmart for Site to Store pick-up RIGHT NOW. Use the potty without a potty seat so we ALL can enjoy it.


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Little Red Dresses?

Earlier this week, the girls watched “Annie” for the first time. Like me, the girls are suckers for musicals and absolutely loved it, especially Rose who is my future drama club girl. Today she told me that Annie is her favorite.

Wait? Her favorite? What about Cinderella?

“I like Annie even more,” said the girl who won’t allow me to dress her in anything but blue because that’s what Cinderella wears to the ball.

Does this mean I have to buy all red for her now? Because I already bought her blue dresses for spring/summer? On top of the large non-blue hand-me-down wardrobe that already existed?

If she wants red, she’s SOL.


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Princess Bunk Beds

Dressing up like Cinderella is not complete without a nap at our house. These days the girls fantasize about their future bunk bed.

That’s one way to build a bunk bed!


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The Hair Crisis

They had a hair salon role play station at preschool this week. Usually these stations have little effect on our home life, but Cinderella-worshipping, dress-wearing Rose was VERY interested in it. She kept coming home saying she wanted her hair cut and that she wanted it cut “short” like mine.

Rose has thick beautiful dark long hair. It falls a few inches below her shoulders. It’s one of her best features. Every single day I look at her hair with envy. It’s beyond anything I’ve ever been able to accomplish with my own thin, fine, straight brown hair. I firmly believe that kids should be allowed to choose how they dress and do their hair (within reason), but I do NOT want her hair cut right now. I feel like we’ve been working toward getting SOMEONE’S hair to look like this for years. Why destroy perfection? Why?

Not the best picture of Rose, but for some reason my latest pictures don’t do her hair justice. This one shows some of the volume and length I love.

I know hair grows back and I would get her hair cut for her if she really wanted it, but NO! NO!

So I called my mother to complain about this. She was also against cutting Rose’s beautiful hair and plotted with me to figure out a way to convince Rose not to get a haircut. I know I’m the one who has to drive her to the salon and pay for it, but I don’t want to keep her from a haircut if that’s what she truly wants.

My mom said I should point out that Cinderella has long hair. The trouble is, Cinderella doesn’t actually have long hair. Her hair is shoulder-length like mine. When Cinderella is dolled up for the ball, she puts her hair in a bun and it looks even shorter!

First I showed Rose that my hair is getting longer and is almost as long as hers. For most of her life my hair has been chin-length, but now it is just past my shoulders. Rose was slightly swayed in her haircut obsession, but said she still wanted it short. Then I told her Cinderella has long hair.

“No she doesn’t! It’s short when she goes to the ball!” said Rose.

When I told her that Cinderella’s hair was just pulled back for the ball, she was really surprised. I showed her how I could pull up my own hair and make it look short and offered to do the same for her.

And suddenly the girl doesn’t want a haircut.

I almost cut off my daughter’s beautiful hair when all she really wanted was an updo.

Phew. Crisis averted.


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“It’s Perfect for Her”– the Conundrum

Yesterday I was walking through Meijer when suddenly I saw something that was “perfect” for Rose.

I mean, how could I walk away from a hooded Cinderella towel considering how gigantic her Cinderella love is? We need new towels anyway and this towel just had “Rose” written all over it.

The trouble I had when I saw it was what to do about Lily. Do I have to get her a towel too? And which towel? There were other characters, but no other princesses. This towel was so obviously perfect for Rose’s Cinderella passion, but there is no such obsession in Lily’s life. In fact, Lily has no favorite anything. If you ask her what princess she likes the best, she will answer “all of them”. If you ask her her favorite color, she says “rainbow”. Who is her best friend at school? “Everyone.” It’s a wonderful personality trait of hers that she doesn’t play favorites, but it also makes it really hard sometimes. There is no perfect anything for Lily (aside from an $80 Lego kit she’s been eyeing).

When I see a blue dress or Cinderella anything, I want to buy it for Rose. There is nothing parallel to that that ever makes me discover a toy or outfit and think “OMG, Lily must have this.” when I had absolutely no plans to buy a treat that day. And I don’t know what to do with that.

It’s not fair for me to constantly come home with blue/Cinderella stuff for Rose, but never come home with stuff for Lily because nothing practically jumped off the shelf yelling “LILY MUST HAVE ME!” I mean, I understand that both kids don’t always have to get presents at once. Sometimes you find something for one kid but not the other and the kids have to get used to that. That’s part of life that they need to understand, but the way things are going Rose would get constant presents while Lily got nothing.

When I found the Cinderella towel, I just didn’t know what to do. An occasional treat for just one kid is to be expected, but every time the kids take a bath Lily would be reminded of any jealousy she might have feel over this towel. We could say “it’s just a towel”, but look at that thing! It’s awesome! I thought about coming home with one of the cheaper Lego kits as a token prize of my finding something perfect for Rose, but that seemed unfair. If my sister had a hooded towel that awesome, I’d probably want one too even if I usually preferred another type of toy.

I ended up coming home with nothing for Lily and explaining that she could have something of equal or lesser value if she wanted. I explained there were other characters she could choose from OR other toys. She immediately said she wanted the exact same towel as Rose. Phew!

Now that works for this time, but what will happen next time? Will I ever see something in a store and think “LILY!” right away? It just seems so unfair that all these perfect things exist for Rose, and Lily gets “treats” to make up for it. I wish I could find a way to fix this.

I hope that someday there is something “perfect” for Lily. Until then, I guess I’ll just do my best to keep the random gifts fair?



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The New Cinderella in Town

Rose lives, breathes and dies for Cinderella. Everything she does, wears, sings, says or plays all relates back to Cinderella. Occasionally she will express a split loyalty for another Disney princess, claiming that Merida or Rapunzel are her favorites, but it always comes back to Cinderella. I suppose for now this is a good thing. I just purchased 14 new/used warm-weather blue dresses. I’d hate for her to back out on Cinderella and her blue dress obsession NOW when I already have the wardrobe problem taken care of for the next 6 months. And yet there’s a new toddler idol in town. That idol goes by the name of Maria Von Trapp.

My husband has to be the world’s biggest heterosexual male fan of “The Sound of Music”. He owns two copies of the movie, two copies of the sheet music for piano and at least one copy of the movie cast soundtrack. I love the movie too, but he’s the devoted enthusiast in this house. Or at least he WAS. Now we have two little girls who are probably more obsessed with the movie than he is. Since we introduced the movie last month, they have watched it repeatedly and listened to the soundtrack non-stop. They constantly sing the music, especially Rose who somehow has known almost all the words to every song after only watching the movie once or twice.

Now Rose wanders around pretending she is Maria. She dances and sings and tells me that she’ll be Maria and I can be “the children” (which is an interesting feat).

While Cinderella is still No. 1 in her world, Maria is definitely challenging her dominance.

There may be a reason why this is happening so easily.

“Maria has yellow hair just like Cinderella! And the captain has black hair just like the prince! That’s why Cinderella marries the prince and Maria marries the captain.”– Rose

So, Maria may just be a substitute for Cinderella because Julie Andrews kind of sort of looks like Cinderella? Maria is just Cinderella in disguise? Maybe the children represent the mice and birds and the nuns are her stepfamily?

Hmmmm… I wonder how she’d feel about Mary Poppins?


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Cinderella Wants You to Go Potty

Lately we’ve had a major potty training problem, but then when DON’T we have a potty training problem around these here parts? I know there will be a time in my children’s life when trying to prevent accidents and cleaning them up when they occur will no longer be the norm. Right now that time seems so far in the future that it’s on the verge of being fictional.

Anyway, ever since Rose was apparently mortally wounded by the sound of the toilet flushing at the park, she’s refused to use public toilets. Often she can get away with this, but sometimes she can’t. Lately she’s had a streak of bad luck and bad timing with her attempts to only go potty at home. Keep in mind, she is refusing to use pubic toilets even though I’ve gone to the trouble of carrying a potty seat with me wherever I go, have promised to NEVER flush the toilet while she’s still in the stall and have promised to protect her and make sure the potty would never ever hurt her.

No dice for forever. Rose was getting so upset about the prospect of having to use the potty in public or have an accident that she didn’t even want to leave the house. We’d have massive blowouts just to get out the door. It was absolutely ridiculous.

Finally after one particularly bad public accident, I had absolutely had it. I was ranting on and on about how public potties were FINE and she would be safe and what else could we do to make this better when it occurred to me that my thoughts on the matter had no effect on her. Who cares if Mommy wants her to go potty? I’m just nobody. There’s somebody in Rose’s life FAR more important than me.

So I called in Cinderella to help me to convince Rose to use the potty in public again.

“Cinderella wants you to use the potty!” I said. Her potty seat is actually in a bag with a picture of all the Disney princesses on it. I made the bag move to have Cinderella talk to Rose in a high-pitched voice. “Please use the potty in stores, Rose! I’ll be so proud of you! In fact, I’m going to give Mommy chocolate to give to you if you go to the potty in the store.”

Rose was intrigued and agreed to use the potty at the next store we went to. Even though we raced across a giant store to get to the bathroom, when we finally got there she was still apprehensive. Cinderella had to speak to her several times, but eventually she finally sat on her potty seat.

Unfortunately, it was too soon after her massive pee accident. Rose’s bladder was completely empty! She burst into tears and refused to leave the toilet!

“It’s ok! You can get down! You still get chocolate just for sitting!”

“NO! I HAVE TO STAY HERE!” Much wailing followed.

We were in that bathroom a LONG time before Cinderella and I finally convinced her that it was ok if she didn’t pee just now. The important thing was that she TRIED to use a public toilet again.

Then Cinderella slipped me some money and we bought her a big bag of Hersey’s Kisses.

“Cinderella is so proud of me!” Rose triumphantly announced when we got back to the car.

Though public potties haven’t been all sunshine and roses since this event transpired, she hasn’t had another accident and is using public potties again. She even admitted to me that maybe the flushes weren’t so scary after all.

“Flushes can’t hurt me!”

This has been your second public service announcement that even though it seems totally safe to send your two small children alone into a single stall bathroom while you stand right outside the door with a sleeping baby, you WILL pay for it. Shortcuts never pay.


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