The Fancy Dress

Getting dressed for school is always a  disaster, debacle, rage inducing experience challenge.

Parents everywhere are spitting out their coffee yelling, “YES!” in solidarity with this statement.

First, when your child is still young enough to not have an opinion about what to wear, there is the issue of tiny buttons. Tiny buttons for big adult hands or too small fasteners for aging eyes. It is impossible. There is yelling and crying and cursing and shouting.

Then, when your child has opinions and wants to choose her own outfits, you get something like this:

Or this:

Or this:

There was a time when my kids would match. There was a time when my kids looked put together. There was a time when I would care. That time has passed. I don’t care if it matches or is even appropriate for the weather. Whatever they have on when it is time to leave, that is what they are wearing. Halloween costume in March? Be my guest. A dress AND a skirt? Sure, looking great.

But one thing I drew the line at was The Fancy Dress.

My girls, believe me, have plenty of clothes. They have choices up the wazoo of dresses and clothes that are fine to wear to school, get dirty, get torn, get lost, etc. So I started hiding the fancy dresses, the ones saved for “special” events, in the back of the closet. I would hide packages that came in with fancy dresses. I got play dresses and day dresses and I don’t care if this comes back covered in mud dresses.

But all Sarah wanted were: fancy dresses. Fancy dresses that are pretty and beautiful. And twirl. They must twirl.

So. I bought fancy dresses. Fancy dresses that twirl. Fancy dresses that are a step up in price from Target but made well enough that when they are washed from all the getting muddy, they will not fall apart.

From a child’s point of view, EVERY day is a special day deserving of a fancy dress. Now I have a certain special little person who fancies herself a fancy dress every day who is VERY happy.

Thanks to Zulily, my favorite discount website, these super cute Llum dresses, that are typically far beyond my “these are everyday fancy dresses that are most likely going to have a short shelf life” budget, were affordable.

Now my sassy Sarah can flounce off to school looking super fancy and feeling super happy. And I’m not going to be stressing over her getting her “special outfits” dirty.

It’s time we ditched saving fancy dresses for special occasions. Let them wear dresses with snow boots when they go geocaching. Let them wear tulle on a regular ole Tuesday. Crazy, you say?

Yep. That is my life.


Have a great crazy day!




The Independent Streak

Sarah did it.

That is going to be what is indicated as “cause of death” in my obituary.

She will not have ACTUALLY physically caused me harm. She’s as sweet as they come. But if I lose my sanity and die an early death, it will be because of her.

SJ standing

Sweet, right?

Don’t let that cutie pie face fool you. Come by any morning when we are getting ready to leave the house. I don’t need to give you the address, you’ll hear us when you get within a mile. Trust me.

In typical “second child” fashion, Sarah has a stubborn, independent, “tempestuous” streak a mile long. She wants to be 10 years older and do all the things without any of my help, thank you very much.

Gone are the days of getting up, throwing a diaper and some clothes on her, grabbing a snack and heading out the door. I used to get her up 10 minutes before it was time to leave the house. That gave her as little time as possible to be distracted by all the things she would rather be doing than leaving the house, like rearranging the crayons in the crayon box or making sure the magnets are JUST RIGHT on the fridge. It worked like a charm. Have her snack visible as soon as she rounded the corner and we were out the door. Worked like a charm.

She was dressed up, cute as a button. She had matching skirts and tops, fun colorful pants and whimsical dresses with tights.

Then she got an opinion when it came to fashion and wanted “choices”.

Choices that one would describe as “eclectic”, “eccentric” and “unique” on a good day.

And these choices are not made lightly. OR quickly. No, not quickly at all. With a commute that even a 5 minute delay can be the difference between smooth sailing and dead standstill, I do not have time to waste.

But apparently the artistic choices of my pintsized Fashion Plate cannot be rushed.

Oh, and help is not wanted. Nooooo, no help. She needs to do it. “I do it myself!” In a state of frustration, one time (maybe even this morning) I took her pants off after she, for 10 minutes, declared she wanted to do it herself. I pointed out to her that she was, in fact, doing nothing herself so I would help her. I am sure you can imagine how that went.

There was flailing about, tears, throwing of things, and she was even worse.

She finally got her pants and put them on.

Just not the pants she needed to put on for school. She put back on the pants I took off of her. Looking at me defiantly she declared, for the 100 bazillionth time, “I do it MYSELF.” She then took those pants off and took another 3 years to put on the rest of her outfit.

I love her independence. I love she wants to do these things herself because at times it really helps out. On the weekend she is dressed and ready to go before I even get her out of her room. Standing there sweetly, “I did it myself!”

Then she demands I make her breakfast, like a little tyrant.

I know some people can’t stand their kids going to school in outfits that don’t match, isn’t appropriate to the weather, or don’t fit quite right.

I understand that. Sometimes my daughter looks like something belonging on the Island of Misfit toys. But I love it. There will be a time she will be all to self-conscious about what she is wearing, wanting to look like everyone else. I am going to enjoy her being entirely 100% true to herself, in all of her colors, prints and patterns.

Even if it means I will be pulling my hair out.

Sj outfit5

Strips and multi-flower patterned items do, in fact, look adorable.

SJ outfit4

Burgundy and gold are always a hit with me, the purple plaid pants just add some much needed pizazz.

SJ outfit3

Florals tend to be a fan favorite, and go quite well with the famililar plaid pants and accompanying snowman bag.

SJ outfit2

Catching on to the one up/one down trend and giving it a spin all her own.

SJ outfit1

Her star cardigan really pulls together the floral and polka dots.

SJ outfit6

Comfort or fashionable? Who says it can’t be both???

Have a great crazy day!