Monday, December 19, 2011

Just Thinking...

We had a discussion of how much is too much for Christmas when it comes to grown-up kids. I put a halt to Christmas stockings this year for both of my kids and Mr. Ednurseasauras. They are fun, but I invariably find the contents of the stocking stashed in a bag in March (or June, or September). I found several years of assorted stocking stuff for K in a box recently which didn't make me happy. At least J always takes his stuff with him.

Sherry has two married step-kids in their mid to late 30's, one of whom has a young child. She also has a daughter with her first husband who was recently married who is in her early 20's. Sherry's plan was to get some kind of bigger ticket household item for the one couple with the kid, and knit a Christmas stockings for the other. Since Sherry had just hosted her wedding, the recently married kid was getting nothing. Sherry thought this seemed equitable. Her rationale was that she was putting a lot of time and effort into the Christmas stocking

"Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wasn't the older kid just saying last week that she didn't feel like a close family because she felt like you and your husband excluded her and favored your daughter? And wasn't this after she had a lovely wedding of her own last year? Jeez, she's nearly 40! Of COURSE she's not going to think a Christmas stocking is equal. Sad but true"

Sherry: "You're probably right. (I have learned that this response is code for not necessarily agreeing with me). When she was growing up the older one's mother didn't allow to have Barbie dolls. When Ella got one, she went ballistic. She was 13 and Ella was 3. She's never forgiven us for it"

Ah, the Barbies. I wasn't allowed to have one either. They were too....grown up. I had a "Tammy" doll, which I never knew until recently was only made for a few years and is considered very collectible. Tammy had more innocent features and a body that looked like way less of a Ho than Barbie's. That also meant that Tammy could never wear the more glamorous Barbie outfits.

 I never really quite "got" playing dolls, dressing and undressing them for hours seemed like a pointless activity, and I quickly tired of playing "prom", "date" and "wedding". Me and my Tammy were perennial wedding guests, never even a bridesmaid let alone the bride.  I would rather have read a book.

If I had a choice of playing dolls or poking needles into my eyes I would play dolls, but not graciously.

In the 1960's, girls didn't have multiple Barbies. They had one. If they were really lucky, they might have a Ken. The thing I coveted most of all was the little sister Skipper doll because she had long, brushable golden hair.   I would have traded Tammy and both of her outfits, as well as the homemade poncho and scarf in a heartbeat to be able to play with Skipper.  There was some scandal about someone's brother's cutting off  dolls' hair to make hay for the horses when they were playing circus, but it wan't any of mine.  I didn't have that many dolls. 

My daughter K had lotsa Barbies, which have found a permanent home in an old gym bag in my basement.  J, or course, didn't play dolls.  But he inherited a big trash bag of Master's of the Universe figures from that Beckett kid who lived on the next street.  His whack job father simply decided he didn't want them in the house anymore.  Dad probably should have been paying more attention to the fact that Beckett was, at 6, regularly peeing in the bushes in my back yard.  They were....odd people. He would have played with Barbies I think, but would have been the one to pull the legs off and bury them in the garden.