It’s no surprise that Chuck wanted to play with her magnetic paper dolls this week. Not too long ago, she was handed down a set from her cousin, and she just got two new ones for her birthday. She’s been obsessed with clothes and dressing lately. During one not so supervised day this past week, she decided to play store in her room. The first time I went to see what was up, she had taken all her dresses out of her closet and hung them up on every doorknob around her room. She said she was playing store, and I thought it was pretty cute, so I left her to play. We had recently been to a clothing exchange where clothes were set up everywhere, maybe that was her inspiration. I kept seeing her sneak out of her room with a suspicious look and grab bags. It was too quiet, and I knew I needed to check in again. This time, the contents of her dresser were removed, some placed in bags. The dresses were taken off their hangers, and there were piles of clothes all over the floor. For a moment, I was inspired to do the same with my clothes and finally create one of those capsule closets that everyone seems to enjoy…but I’ll wait until I can fit into more than 3 outfits again. Postpartum is not the time for a closet overhaul.
On this particular morning, Charlotte got out her slip and asked to watch the video of her cousin’s recent ballet performance. I think she’s trying to memorize the moves. She keeps talking about how she is going to be in a “barret show” soon. When Charlotte was getting ready to put on the slip, she was already wearing some frog pjs. She first said she was going to put the slip on over them, and then said, “no, that would be silly,” somewhat reluctantly trying to convince herself it wasn’t a good idea. Chuck was much more deliberate than I would have expected when dressing the dolls; she kept checking the back of the box to either get inspiration or see what articles of clothing were “supposed” to go together. I’m really enjoying watching her play this game with her own clothes. I’ve decided that for the most part, she can choose what she wears. Of course, I have already picked out what clothes she has in her drawers. If we need to get ready in a rush in the morning, I will pick out her clothes the night before (maybe giving her a choice). She can have veto power to whatever I pick out for her, but I also get veto power for anything she picks out for herself. So far, so good. Sometimes her outfits make me cringe. Sometimes my outfits probably make her uncomfortable. Most of the time she’s naked, so that helps (she had a fleeting idea to watercolor during this observation…and I told her that if she wanted to paint, she had to take off her slip…it never got put back on).
When Winnie, who was sleeping on me, woke up, I set her down on the ground so she could watch Charlotte playing. Winnie has been eating non stop and is working on differentiating her cries to be more effective. She’s developed this adorable high-pitched shrill that she lets out in moments of sheer disappointment that is the most perfect pout. Charlotte asked me to sit her up so she could play with the dolls too. She was seriously disappointed to learn that Winnie would not actually be able to help dress the dolls, no matter how much she assisted the process. Chuck loves Winnie, and is always wanting to be with her. There’s not a bath, diaper change, nap, or nursing session, where Winnie doesn’t have an audience. Charlotte’s constantly requesting to “see her face,” which usually includes a little jerking of the face in her direction. The excitement in Charlotte’s voice when she thought that Winnie was going to actually play with her was everything that I hoped for in having another child. Charlotte tried to include Winnie in her play but eventually ditched her for a doll that I will let her carry around. She got up, said it was time to go, strapped April (her doll) in the carseat and left. Soon enough Winnie will be able to play with you, Charlotte.