the American Girl madness begins

Last week, my two year old daughter and I were lucky enough to be invited to an after-hours private party at American Girl Place New York. It was a benefit for the Children’s Cancer and Blood Foundation, and next year I will be sure to do all my readers a favor and tell you if this benefit happens again, because there were seriously about 35 people in the entire store. I gather that is not the usual feel of the place.

Maggie is too young to really know anything about American Girl dolls, but after about five minutes in the store, she looked at me with a raised eyebrow and said, “I get dolly?” (Another word of wisdom for future visitors: bring a doll from home with you, even if it’s not Matilda or Bathsheba or one of the actual American Girl varieties).

I was not going to get a two year old a hundred-dollar doll, so we found the Bitty Twins area (two for $95 and they allow split orders). We picked out the blonde chiquita pictured above and we were good to go. Since Bitty Twins don’t come with preassigned names, Maggie quickly christened her baby “Dora Buffalo,” after her favorite TV show and her favorite large, shaggy-haired sort of wild ox.

And then we took Dora Buffalo to the tea room, where she sat in a special doll booster seat while Maggie had two helpings of chocolate mousse.  Maggie was starry-eyed by the entire experience, almost as dazzled as I was. It was definitely exciting, after raising two little boys, to escort my young daughter to the Girly-Girliest Place on Earth. And although I am appalled at the idea of spending $38 on “Lulu’s Turn of the Century Bathing Costume,” or whatever, I have a feeling American Girl will be receiving a few more of my hard-earned dollars.