A separate subject.
To my displeasure, Frances has lately been obsessed with American Girl Dolls. Do you know what these things are? They are overpriced and absurd, the hot thing now for at least the last decade. Because of their expense, they seem to be a sort of status symbol among girls, though Frances can't know that yet at 4, can she? They promote consumerism at its height, providing a catalogue carrying any kind of accessory you can imagine. The want is bottomless. I ended up on the American Girl Doll mailing list somehow, and when the catalogues come I rush them to the recycling before Frances can see them. Over Christmas, however, Frances got ahold of one and perused it at leisure with her grandmother. Oh well. So now an American Girl Doll is the goal.
Our eight year old neighbor got one, and she told Frances you have to be eight before you can get one, and I appreciated that. So I had my line: When you're eight, we can talk about it. Then Frances went to another friend's house for a playdate and at the end, while I was gathering up her shoes and coat, she appeared with Bitty Baby Twins, the American Girl Doll for the younger set which costs $100, two of them off all things, naked. "Maia said I could keep them," she said. Hm. I was saved by Maia's father, who said that "actually, Maia was given those by a special friend, and they need to be here when she comes to visit." Maia doesn't like dolls at all, and she was perfectly happy to hand Frances both dolls and their suitcases overflowing with pajamas and bunny slippers and blankies and several other outfits. "You can borrow them, though," said her dad. I tried to insist that we had enough doll clothes already and we'd just take the dolls, but in the end it all came with us.
We've since returned all of that, and at another playdate with a different girl, Frances came home with a full size American Girl Doll. Holy crap! How did she do that? She said she wanted one, and here one came. I have to say, she did seem to love it more than any other doll. She brought it to the grocery, to the library, and she buckled her securely in the seat beside her in the car. And, average sucker mom that I am, I did love seeing her joy with that doll. It's gone back now to its owner. This morning Frances asked how long it is til christmas because she knows what she wants to ask santa for. Her list was impressive; two specific American Girl Dolls, a bike for one, mugs and drinks and clothes, a pet for the other. She drew this picture to illustrate.
Much as I hate them, I wonder if she'll end up with one, and before she's eight. She certainly knows what she wants and does whatever it takes to get it. It's rather impressive.