Wednesday, July 24, 2013: Dressing a toddler.

Dear Babies,

I didn’t know a bathing suit could make that sound, but I guess with that speed, and tulle catching the wind velocity like that, yes, your bedroom did sound like the set of a Kung Fu movie.



It was seven a.m., and I feared I might lose my eyeballs to the tutu of a hot pink bathing suit being sliced through the air like a samurai sword.

“STOP,” while blinking.


“I’ll put it on.”


“I’ll put it on.”

“YOU PUT IT ON???!!!”

“I’M PUTTING IT ON! JUST HAND IT OVER!” {blink} “STOP IT!” {blink, wince} “STOP!” {blink, wince, duck} “GIVE IT TO ME.” {tug} “GIVE IT!” {tug} “GIVE IT!” {pull it and fall backwards onto my behind, clutching the pink suit of death in my paw}

Ahh, victory. 

“Come on, let’s get a cover-up.” Because we need dignity, right? Why walk around camp with your behind sticking out like the tiny female wrestler you actually are? “Mama, I wear beautiful dress?” Beautiful dress being code for a drag-queen-worthy dress-up costume in the basement, complete with tiara, wand and feathers. God damn I mean bless you, darling Disney princesses. “You can wear something over your bathing suit.” “Mama, I wear beautiful dress?” Because if at first you don’t succeed, keep asking until you get the answer you want to hear. “You can wear something over your bathing suit, yes.” “MAMA, I wear beautiful dress?”  I tried hard to sell a more innocuous one, at least something cotton on this 197 degree day. “Like this one, with the flowers! Or how about this {with a hard-selling GASP} I LOVE this! With the sparkles and the pink flamingos?! {clap, clap, clap, clap} “MAMA,” I was scolded. “I. WEAR. BEAUTIFUL. DRESS.” In the end, we settled for a frilly Hello Kitty skirt that could be worn to camp or the ice capades. Don’t you just love a compromise?

“MAMA! I wear a beautiful braid?”

“If you sit and let Mommy do it, I’ll braid your hair.”

“Mama? You do beautiful braid? In my hair?”

“Yes, come sit here.”

“You do beautiful braid? {GASP, mimicking mine from before} So beautiful!”

“Yes, come sit here. I’ll do it.”

“You do it? Mama, you do beautiful braid?”

I leap for you, trying to hook one of your legs. Catching a toddler is like trying to catch a mouse. I need one of those canes from  an old-time show used to yank a bad act. When I finally catch you, and do the world’s quickest, most crooked french braid in between wrestles and squeezes of my knees to keep you still, then came the dreaded part, because everything else was just peachy: Hair bows. Opening up the accessories drawer is opening Pandora’s box, literally.

{GASP}, you say spying the pink and purple explosion , “SO BEAUTIFUL!” We negotiate for the next few minutes as I talk you down from a combination of five, four, three, okay, maybe two hair accessories. A headband and a bow? Great, let’s move on.

“Mama, I wear my sparkly shoes?”

“No, baby, not to camp. You don’t want to get those all dirty and wet, right? Let’s wear our Crocs.”


“No, baby, you can’t wear those to camp. You want to go to camp, right? And see your friends, right? How fun. I love camp. You won’t be allowed to go to camp if you wear those shoes. Don’t you want to play soccer?! How fun is soccer? (*noting I never played soccer a day in my life) Come on, put them down. Put those back. Put them back. No, back. Back. Back. Back. Put them down. We’re wearing our Crocs. Go get your Crocs.” {I get the Crocs.} {I fake GASP} “So beautiful! Look at these flower Crocs! How awesome!” {Crocs get ripped from my hand and tossed through the air ricocheting off the sliding glass door.} (Who knew Crocs could catch air like that, but I guess with those holes?)

{Oh, effin’ shoot me, sunscreen.}

“Okay, come on, let’s get our towels. Everybody out the door. March. March. March. March. That’s good, keep it moving. Down the stairs. March. March. March. March. Get your towel. Thanks, Baby Boy, good listening. I like that one with the surfboard, very cool. Come on, Baby Girl. Pick your towel. Pick your towel. Get your towel. We’re going to be late. Get a towel. Here, I’ll get you a towel. Look at this awesome pink one–”

“NO, I DO IT!” And a towel from the bottom gets snatched sending the whole pile crashing down, forming a mountain at the bottom of the stairs you proceed to roll around in, to the point where I could no longer see you, just the shape of what had to be a rabid, seething animal thrashing around under terry cloth, crying, so angry, over what? You wanted to hold the towel? Carry the towel? Pick the towel?

Who gives a shit about a towel?

It’s going to be a long life, you guys. Pick your battles. Look at me, every morning I admit defeat.

everybody was kung fu fighting




9 thoughts on “Wednesday, July 24, 2013: Dressing a toddler.

  1. Melissa Swedoski says:

    Well I don’t know why on earth I haven’t been stalking you before, but you’re stuck with me now. See? That’s me across the street in the minivan. Although it’s hard to pay attention with my kids running in the street.

  2. chicachicababies says:

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha! Lordy. My two aren’t so conversational yet (still getting that talking business down), so the dressing adventure is a wrestling match over the low whine of the boy one and the shrill screech of the girl one. I’m loathing the day my daughter asks for the “beautiful drag queen dress.”

    • amydenby says:

      …and when we were in the low whine/shrill screech days, I couldn’t wait for them talk. And everyone said (as everyone always has something to say) “just wait…” But oh yeah. They were right. Just wait 😉 Thanks for reading!

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