Like a girl

My daughter has taught me much about being a girl. Before she was born, I was adamant that she not be pinkwashed, as girls tend to be these days. And the joke’s on me – she’s the girliest girl I know. But that doesn’t sap her power; in fact, she draws upon her girliness. It is one of her greatest strengths.

So today’s post is a tribute to her. Girl power FTW.

Loving:

Anya has started pre-emptive complimenting. It’s been a progression: First, she started using compliments as damage control; after finger-painting the bathroom counter with toothpaste, she’d tell me “I like you shirt, Mommy!” in an effort to mitigate my anger. Now she compliments me when she thinks I may get mad. Which is simultaneously amusing and worrying. When she tells me “I like you hair, Mommy,” my first instinct is no longer to say “Thanks, baby,” but “What’d you do?”

But I have to admit, the compliments are appreciated. I don’t get many compliments on my appearance these days.

Reading:

A great article by Kristen Bell on what’s good about girliness. I hadn’t looked at the topic in quite this way, but she makes some really good points. I see my daughter in this article. She is tough, but gentle. Empathetic. Loving. Above all, she’s charming and considerate.

I’m a fan of Kristen Bell. Frozen, of course, is a popular film around here. But like a good little marshmallow, I’ve also introduced the kids to Veronica Mars. (At this point, Kai is more into it than Anya. Though Anya does love Veronica’s clothes.) I think V is an excellent role model. It’s nice to see that the actress that portrays her is similarly strong and smart.

And then there’s this adorable feministy rant against bro dogs in children’s literature. Which goes hand in hand with this post from one of my new favorite blogs, about how I’m a grown-a** woman and I’ll wear what I want. Not that Anya needs any reminders that she can dress however she wants (within reason; flip-flops and t-ball don’t mix). But I sometimes do.

Watching:

I discovered that Bones season 11 is available in its entirety on Hulu, so I’m back on gooey dead bodies. For the record, I think Brennan is an excellent role model, as well, but I don’t let my kids watch Bones. It’s just a bit too gory for littles. And thanks to all of the deaths we’ve had in the family since she was born, Anya is already more preoccupied with death than I’d like.

Listening to:

I’ve been trolling the suggestions on Spotify, trying to find some new favorites. And it occurred to me that my playlists are chock full of white men. Which isn’t a bad thing – I rather like white men. But perhaps a little estrogen would improve my playlists. So I’m checking out Lori McKenna’s newer stuff, and getting to know Dar Williams. I think we’re going to be good friends.

Working on:

I’ve been using Exist and RescueTime to try to get a handle on my patterns. I’m hoping that with greater understanding will come greater mastery over myself and my time. I’m also using the Big Stretch app to try to tame my knotted shoulders and aching hips and knees. I’ve been working 14+ hours a day lately; I need the reminder to stop and stretch periodically.

Anticipating:

Next weekend is my great-aunt Isabel’s 90th birthday, and we’re going to her birthday party. I can’t wait to see her (and my cousins) again.

Anya drew her this picture:

20160616_115113.jpg

According to her, this is Aunt Isabel (bottom left), with a baby in her belly. The large shape to the right is a dinosaur. I can’t tell if she is walking the dinosaur or fighting it, but judging by the smile on her face (and the scowl on the dinosaur’s face), Isabel clearly has the upper hand here.

Girl power, indeed.

Making me happy:

Watching my daughter work a room. She has a compliment for everyone. A kiss for every baby. She makes eye contact, introduces herself, and speaks her truth with utter confidence. She is not deterred by naysayers and grumpbutts, but simply moves on to the next person with a kind word and a smile. I will do everything in my power to see that she maintains that confidence and cheer into adulthood.

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