By Kim Shepheard

Since having kids have you noticed that you almost never shop for yourself anymore? I have! My child outgrows her clothes at such a rate that it is difficult to catch up. I’m forever buying a size up just to make sure we won’t find ourselves dressing her in pedal pushers in the winter. I find shopping for her clothes fun, as well as an extension of my own expression. Yet, I also see her clothes as a representation of her personality, even though I’m still technically choosing them. She hardly ever protests a certain color or style, and though she’s an active kid, she sometimes surprises me. I recently put her in a nightgown for bed instead of her usual footie pajamas and two-piece sets. My two-year-old responded by saying “Like princess!” and loved it! Who knew she could be that girly sometimes?

  • Some things I cringe at, yet find adorable and give in to, are:
  • Her preference for wearing jellies with patterned socks.
  • Her refusal to wear sweatshirts or jackets when it’s chilly outside.
  • Her complete disregard for “matching”.
  • Her talent for getting breakfast all over her clean clothes before getting dropped off at daycare (and subsequently making me look like a parent with no time to do laundry).
  • Her insistence on “helping” me with laundry and streaking it all through the house so it attracts dog hair and needs to be washed again.

I’m not one of those moms who saves her child’s first “everything.” Maybe I should be, but I believe in being somewhat practical and sharing. We don’t usually receive hand-me-downs, but I always try to mail some of her good used stuff to family or pass it on to local friends or even Goodwill occasionally. It never occurs to me to sell anything or do swaps. I always feel that we look for deals, buy ahead and then hope that someone else can get some good use out of it.

My husband has a different style of clothing that he buys and dresses her in. It is called “boy clothes.” I’m not a big fan of always gendering my child in pink and princess-y things, but let’s just say that we’ve had more than our share of punk rock t-shirts to pass on to her cousin Enzo in New York. She does look cool in her Ramones shirt and plaid pants with a ponytail on top of her head, I must admit.

One thing I can’t get used to is finding that some clothes she has never even worn yet don’t fit her at all! I know that kids’ clothing brands are all sized differently, but this isn’t even reasonable given that we are so conscious of her growth spurts. Well, apparently it happens to us all. And when it does happen, all you can do is sigh and pass it on.