So I recently abandoned some pre-parent feminist proclamations about not giving my future children toys that feed into stereotypical roles. A daughter wouldn’t be bathed in pink and frills and dolls and a son wouldn’t get a fishing pole and truck and baseball. They wouldn’t get these things, anyway, without some sort of counterbalance. So a daughter would get a big ol’ truck and my son a dainty doll. You get the idea.
It must have been some sort of reincarnation of Mrs. Cleaver that recently crept into and possessed my body when I wasn’t paying attention. Before I knew it, I was on the hunt for a kitchen set for Maeve. Although some Gloria Steinem-like voice was telling me this wasn’t the direction I thought I’d be taking with my young, impressionable daughter, I was having so much fun looking for the secondhand set that I knew she would love, complete with plates, cups, plastic foods and condiments, that I simply didn’t care. The set we scored has a cupboard, refrigerator, sink, stovetop and oven, dishwasher and microwave.
Well, it seems that this anti-Barbie mama might have less to worry about than I feared.
She and I recently were “cooking” up a storm, using the pretend ice dispenser in the fridge door, and sharing mixing bowls and spoons while we stirred up something “licious” (that’s “delicious” for those of you not schooled in Maevespeak). I took a hot dog from the fridge and explained I was hungry and we could cook it for dinner. I pulled out a little saucepan, filled it with imaginary water from the fake faucet and placed it on the stove.
She looked confused. Alarmed, actually.
Maeve dipped her hand into the saucepan, retrieved the hot dog from its invisible simmering water and literally tossed it into the fake microwave. She pushed a bunch of buttons, said “beep, beep, beep,” and waited.
I had to keep from laughing out loud as I watched the little chef at work and realized she’d never seen me cook a hot dog — or much else — on the stovetop.
She opened the door, grabbed the dog, gasped “hot!” and handed it to me.
Yeah, methinks mamagigi has made her own impression after all. Thanks, Mrs. Cleaver, but your lacy-apron services won’t be necessary.