Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Green Bay, WI
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I think that as long as you don't go with commercial princesses and all the movies then you will be fine. Magic Cabin has some nice fabric crowns and silk capes. I would stay away from anything Disney though.
Just wanted to second all the books mentioned...my girls are WAY into the princess stuff, much to my dismay. : I didn't realize the Disney stuff was such a trap when they were first introduced, now we're back-pedaling big time!! Shrek is awesome, too.
My answers FOR US...don't know if you can pass on to your family or not:
- Encourage princess and dress-up play that is not character based, to let them create their own stories. (read: CHEAP, generic dress-up clothes!!) MANY OF THESE HAVE BEEN GIFTS THAT THEY LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!! My girls love all different kinds of wands with ribbons (there are some great ribbon arm/wrist bands from A Toy Garden)....there are beautiful wands and wings out there...even tie-dye ones!!
- To read them the (sometimes altered) original fairy tales, including the ones outside of Snow White and Cinderella (Frog Prince, Ugly Duckling, etc) that have to do sometimes with beauty and stories with a "people aren't what they seem" theme. (GIFT IDEAS: Beautifully bound original fairy tale books mixed with some of the fun picture books mentioned). She may not truly appreciate the bound books until much later, but at least she'll be introduced to the creative beauty of the original stories instead of the watered down movie versions.
- To introduce them to OTHER STRONG or just plain FUN female characters....Little House on the Prairie books (book sets are my thing, can you tell?), Wizard of Oz, Sarah Plain and Tall/Anne of Green Gables). GIFT IDEAS: any of these classic DVDs (if they watch movies) or books. I just found Wizard of Oz BARBIES : FUN, though! They have Dorothy, Glenda AND the Wicked Witch!!! :yay I've thought of giving a themed gift to a little girl to include the movie and the Barbies. (They're $$$$, though...$29.99/ea.) I'm drawing a blank on other characters...but there's TONS, most of which I've gotten hints from other mamas on here.
Hope *some* of that might help. You said she's 4. My girls are just 5 and they pretty much love "all that glitters". They've recently created their own "treasure boxes" from boxes they found here at our house and have everything in there from glass candle beads I've had, painted rocks, broken necklace pieces, broches, etc. They SERIOUSLY play with these EVERY DAY and go through them like they've just hit the jackpot!! I think the trick is anything that has a lid...line it with velvet, glue in a shiny little mirror and hoila!! Hope that doesn't sound too junky, but really....it's the simple things. You could put a few little things together to make a really WONDERFULLY girly gift that she'll treasure without turning her into a DIVA!! Something all of us with girls are working our ASSES off to avoid!!!
Okay...that's all I got for now...
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