04 March 2010

Unrestricted Self-expression

For all of you who live in the area and see Annalia on a regular basis, you have probably noticed that she is not one for wearing pants. In fact, the only time getting her into pants is NOT a fight, is when we have a jammie day. (Apparently pj pants are ok - I haven't introduced her to nightgowns yet.)
When I had girls, I was actually pretty excited at the chance to dress them up in cute/trendy outfits while I take them for outings and people say "oh, look at those adorable girls, aren't they just so cute." Actually, I have noticed that people are nicer to you when your kids look presentable.

Well, now that Annalia likes to have a say in what she wears, I have had to decide just what is important. Do I want to argue over whether her legs and arms are covered, or whether the shirt under her "cold" dress matches the tights she is wearing (let alone the dress.) Often I am able to suggest or manipulate her into at least a decent combination.

Last week, I decided to let her have at it. I told her that she could pick out whatever she wanted to wear (the rule of covering shoulders and legs still applied - it is cold out there!) and that I wouldn't suggest or change anything. Enjoy.
I think this was day 2 of Self-Expression Week. I had great intentions of taking pictures and blogging each day. But really, who are we kidding. I am lucky if I post a blog once a month.
(I told her to smile, I guess it was opposite day.) I was so glad when she picked out this dress. It was the first time she has worn it and I thought "Oh, yes! A simple black dress. How could she possible find a shirt that DOESN'T match?" Well, leave it to Annalia.
She also likes to pick out Naomi's clothes. But, since I had made no promises regarding Naomi's wardrobe, I vetoed the red sweatpants she had picked out for under this "dress".
She was thrilled with the rules this week. Normally, this is an "at home only" dress. But, she tested me, and I did say she could wear anything. So, this is what she wore to preschool. At least the shirt matched this time :) (Notice the ribbon around the head? Yeah, that was her idea too.)

1 comment:

Elise said...

Hey It's Elise, I saw this post through facebook and could not help but comment. Until first grade I also refused to wear pants and had quite the selection of dresses. My mother had a much similar rule in the fact that I could dress myself as long as it was sensible for the weather. I went to town with it. All sorts of crazy combinations, including a decision at four years old to stop matching my socks in the conventional way. The mismatched socks would, however, match the greater outfit. This is actually something I continue today it is often subtle but there.

But the point I was getting to is the fact that my mother let me be an individual with my clothing choices which cultivated my originality and self confidence. My outfits were a point of pride and I eventually learned to match and found a unique sense of style that is my own. I gained a lot of confidence from the fact that my mother had enough confidence in me to let me choose. So keep it up! The outfits may be crazy but she will thank you for it later.