I know girls dressed up as princesses when I was a kid. I know many of the Disney princess movies came out when I was a kid. But I'm offended by the marketing machine. Because of all the toys and books-- some of them aimed at infants-- little girls now know all the Disney princesses before they've ever even had a chance to see the movies. I find their appearance hyper-sexualized, and many of the messages are counter to those we teach our girls. Appearance and size are overvalued, strength of character and independence (except in the most recent of characters), hardly seem to matter at all.
For these reasons, we've tried to limit the princesses-- particularly the Disney princesses. We try to find a balance between what she loves and what we are trying to teach her. We have been only modestly successful at this.
So we decided to collect baby care items for a local non profit and asked our guests not to bring gifts. Mirabella was surprisingly excited about choosing baby clothing for our donation and about our overflowing basket at the end of the party.
The girls loved adding sticker jewels to their tiaras and wands and coloring with glittery crayons
We also talked with Mirabella about what makes her friends unique, and Daniel suggested, "They're sort of like superheroes, huh?"
"Yes! Let's make it a Princess Superhero party!" Mirabella cried.
Being unaccustomed to being in charge of entertainment for a party, we weren't sure how it would go. But after an initial few moments of just looking around at each other and asking several questions like, "Mirabella's Mom, what do we do now?" our little guests seemed to settle in and enjoy playing freely.
So the homemade, at-home princess party was quite an undertaking. Maybe we over thought the character aspects of princesses. Maybe the princess' mama is a bit of a feminist, even when it comes to child's play. But all things considered, based on feedback from our little princess, I think it was a success!