Friday, October 9, 2009

Seeking Advice


I need some advice, some girlie advice. No it is not what you are thinking. I'm still happily married and don't need THAT kind of advice. I need advice on what do you get a 3-1/2 year old girl for Christmas.

What got me started down this path was a recent trip up to Boone, Iowa where they have a 1920's train that you can ride for a couple hours through the Des Moines River valley, including a 170 foot tall bridge. We went up for that in particular but it just happened to be Thomas the Train weekend and they had a mini carnival for kids set up outside the depot complete with a tent packed full of Thomas the Train sets for the kids to play with. Little Abbey spent a couple hours just endlessly playing with various train sets and having the time of her life.

Little Abbey doesn't have a particular fascination with Thomas the Train, at least not like she has with Dora the Explorer but she is fascinated with trains in general. I thought I would research train sets but just about every advertisement has a picture of a smiling boy and every product reviewer talks about their son. This got me thinking about what do people buy a 3-1/2 year old girl for Christmas?

Out of curiosity, I checked several well known websites for kids toys like Fisher-Price and Little Tykes. On the latter site, you could add a filter by gender and what do you suppose came up for little girls and pretend play toys? Shopping carts and kitchens. Are we still in the 50's with the June Cleavers? Other sites have dolls, doll houses, dress up and art related stuff. My daughter has some Barbies and art stuff and though she does play with them, her favorite toys are the Legos, learning computers, books, and a big old cardboard box that I turned into a house.

So what do you give a 3-1/2 year old girl for a present? Is a train set going to scar her for life or do I need to get a doll house? Any advice out there?


P.S. Remember, only 78 more days until Christmas!

11 comments:

geri said...

Ed, I was into dolls as a little girl but my best friend wasn't, she was into what boys were into and she turned out fine, (what do you know, became an engineer :). Now she has 3 year old little girl who seems to be into what Evan is into (male super heroes and stuff) and lamenting to me about it and I told her, "well, she just takes after her mother." I think you already know what Little Abbey would really want for Christmas :) Maybe they have a pink train set? hahaha (btw, my best friend's little girl's favorite color is blue, just like mom)

R. Sherman said...

My daughter had a zillion Brio railroad parts and loved 'em, as did my boys. (To be fair, I enjoyed playing with them and kids, as well.) Also, you can never go wrong with Barbies and picture books.

Cheers.

(PS. You should have saved the backpack for Christmas.)

Cheers.

TC said...

That picture you have at the end? That train set is GREAT!!!!!!!!! My nephew has it and loves it.

I think it's just fine to give a girl a train set. Toys are still super sexist. I say go to Little Abbey's interests. If she likes trains and legos better than Barbie and kitchens, then by all means, buy her those things.

Eutychus2 said...

Ed...
I agree with geri ......... get her a train set; only remember, kids are notorious for going thru changing what they like, so I wouldn't spend too much on the first train set, but enough to keep her entertained for whatever time she enjoys them. You might also want to purchase a few buildings, etc. to go along with the train ... sorta build a little village?!

Murf said...

See I immediately drooled over that house. I always wanted the Barbie Townhouse with working elevator but Santa never brought it. They make a cute Little People house/castle as well but I digress...

Get her both. I actually preferred my brothers Hot Wheels track and cars. Not over Barbie, minde you, but almost as much.

sage said...

Get her the train set--my daughter may even have some to sell, but I'm not sure she's ready to depart with the wooden Thomas collection she has... btw, there is a nice hardback book of all the original Thomas stories in it

Beau said...

What does she like? What is she attracted to? Colors, activities? 'Course you could always wander around a toy store/aisle with her at some point and see what gathers her attention. Fun times!

Vince said...

If she is an only child, Lego. While I would get the Train Set, lets be honest here, you are going to get way more fun out of than she will.
I have a bunch of cousins that are breeding at the moment and one of the most hilarious things is after handing every girly product they can find they then wonder that the girls act like girly-girls.
FYI, in the early days Blue was the colour for girls, it is only since the 60s that odd shade of pink came to the fore.
For me, she is of an age where a Shetland or Welsh pony, if you have the time and space. Or a Lab pup if your better-half has the time.

edifice rex said...

Well, Ed, I had a train set that I loved. I also had a GI Joe doll (and a couple of girl dolls) but loved tool sets and such and you see how I turned out. Whether that is good or bad I'll just leave up to you! haha!
Despite having such boyish interest I was and am still very much a girl. When I got older I liked makeup and dresses and men! just as much as the other women. So, I don't think toys and such when you are young have much to do with that. I think it was a good thing that my parents didn't try to persuade me to be more 'girly', they just wanted me to be active. I was never taught that I should not do certain things (because of being a girl) and so I have always believed I could do whatever. And have done most everything I set out to do.

Ed said...

Everyone - Thanks for your input. I'm pretty sure that a train set is now in L.A.'s future.

PhilippinesPhil said...

Ya only got ONE kid for Krisakes... buy her all of it ya cheapskate! Ya see, this is why i always wait til everyone else has had their say... and by the way, i'm used to being ignored... hehheh