Jul 5, 2011

an enlightened princess is what we're hoping for...

(Side note:  I know today is the day for 4th of July recap posts, but I don't have one.  We had a blast, but we didn't take any pictures.  It's a little hard to chase a toddler around a pool and wield a camera anyway, and I think we were having too much fun to even think about it.)

Cara had her first Disney movie experience this past week, and she is now hooked.  We took her to Disney World last summer, and for being only a year old, she had lots of fun, but I doubt she really remembers all that fun.  She does recognize herself in the pictures we have on the fridge of her sitting in Belle's lap, but before she saw Beauty and the Beast, I don't think she knew what that was all about.

Cara with Princess Belle last summer

We bought a set of Disney princess CDs to help us entertain Cara in the car on our very long drive to Florida, and she really liked them.  They have a few songs from the movie and an audio version of the story, and Cara likes to listen to them while she plays in her room or takes a nap.  Since she liked them so much, I added a few Disney princess movies to our Blockbuster queue, starting with Beauty and the Beast (one of my personal favs). 

I didn't really think Cara would sit still for an entire movie, but she amazed me with her attention span.  And now, she is OBSESSED.  It's actually pretty cute, because she will tell us what is about to happen while we watch the movie and she has sort of her own running commentary.  "Bye-bye, Papa."  "Belle crying."  "Belle's yellow dress."  "Oh no, movles!"  (We have to remind her that "wolves" involves a "w" sound, not an "m" sound, but man, is it cute.) 

I have little twinges of guilt over letting my turning-two-on-Friday baby girl watch an entire movie.  We probably watch too much TV around here as it is, but movies add a whole new element to TV time...it's an hour and half pretty much uninterrupted TV.  Is that bad?  There's a part of me that says "YES," but there's another part of me that delights in the conversations we have about the movie while it's playing and at random moments throughout the day.  I don't think Cara understands the entire story, but she's got a lot of it down.  She recognizes Belle's emotions and remembers the sequence of events, and she loves Belle's yellow ballgown.

And then there's the whole "princess" concept.  Am I teaching her to base her value on her beauty?  Am I teaching that her goal in life should be to bag a prince?  I like that Belle looks past the Beast's appearance to love him for his heart, and I also like that Belle loves to read even if the town thinks that makes her weird.  Look at the inside for true beauty?  Be yourself? 

Am I overthinking this a bit?

6 comments:

  1. Oh dear. I know that lately a lot of people have huge issues with princesses and what that "teaches" your kid, but I grew up watching classic disney princess movies (beauty and the beast, little mermaid, etc etc) and it didn't teach me to value my beauty and all those other concerns.

    However, if YOU have an issue with it, you can certainly limit it.

    Good luck! This parenting job is a tough one!

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  2. I LOVE Disney movies. They always have a good moral to the story and are fun and entertaining for the whole family. I, also, grew up watching them and thought of myself as a princess. But I don't think that made me vain. Instead, I felt like it gave me a boost of self-confidence, a much needed boost. TV and movies are always hard for parents. But you are the parent and you have to decide what is best for your child. We go through spurts. And if I really feel like we have had too much TV, then we have tv free week to get us back on track. That's what works for us, you have to find your niche! :) Way to go mom!

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  3. Of all the princesses, Belle is definitely the best role model, but don't worry--Cara isn't going to be looking up to cartoon princesses--she'll be looking up to you!! So just keep doing what you're doing and she'll be fine :) The fact that you're even thinking about these things shows that you're doing great!

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  4. Ladylike Post. This transmit helped me in my college assignment. Thnaks Alot

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  5. I think your fine. You are her biggest influence so as long as you aren't reinforcing her to bag a prince or look at only her beauty, she'll be able to appreciate it for what it is... a great story.

    That's my two cents anyway :)

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  6. Enter Disney Princess phase. I think I wrote a post about it when we entered this phase. It was even before Blair had seen any of the movies, too! The toy shelves and snack boxes are inundated with princesses. Pretty, pink, glittery, princesses. What's not to love? We watch movies around these parts. Rapunzel (Tangled) is our favorite at the moment. My motto is anything in moderation. . . "You want a movie? Then no TV shows for the rest of the day." Works over here anyways?!

    PS) I need to go look at your new dress. . . I see a strap from my current position on your blog. :)

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