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float like a butterfly; sting like a bee

This morning while I was sewing the Halloween capes, Harvey discovered a pair of bee wings left over from a costume Dan was forced to wear to work 5 or 6 years ago. Harvey immediately put them on and started flitting around the house. Zion for his part demanded a turn in tones that became increasingly frantic with each bee-ish flit.

I was afraid the fabric of the universe might suddenly come apart if there were not an equal distribution of wings in the house. (My personal distaste for negotiating "turns" is a parenting flaw that I'll readily admit.) So I suggested we take a trip to Marshalls to look for a second pair of wings. Marshalls is a discount shop a few blocks from our house, and it's right next to Whole Foods where I was planning to go anyway. The boys quickly agreed, though I had to promise them I would let them EACH pick out a pair of wings if they turned out to be cheap enough.

Parenting flaws all over, I know, but they found my spot of weakness. I LOVE costumes.

Well, it turned out that stand-along wings were not on offer at Marshalls. Costumes WITH wings, on the other hand, were a darn good bargain.

Zion declined to wear the matching dress, but insisted on wings and his cape at the same time.

I justified the purchase by reminding myself of the three little girls who come to our home every week for Small Group. They love playing dress up with the boys, but have complained recently about the lack of "girl" costumes in our arsenal. With these two new dresses plus a tutu I got at a rummage sale last week, there should be ample pan-gender choices now.

The cashier looked at me a little oddly when she saw my two boys and the two pouffy dresses I was buying. Not only that, but I picked up two pairs of little girl tights as well. (The tights were for their KING costumes — so haha, joke's on her I guess.)

Or maybe she was looking at my kids wondering why I dressed my little girls in blue. After all, it didn't really match their headbands and pearl necklaces.

a normal outfit for discount store shopping

Perhaps it goes without saying at this point, but I give my kids a lot of freedom with their self-presentation (though I do make them wear clothes to church). Gender representation goes along with that. I love that my boys ask for necklaces and hair clips and unabashedly describe themselves as pretty. Maybe I love it more because it happens less frequently than stereotypical "boy" behavior. After all, they fight and wrestle and lose chop sticks all over the house because they're standing in for swords or guns or drumsticks. So I don't have worries over their future masculinity (whatever that means). I'm just happy to see them act like plain old kids.


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