HJ-ED-DHJHerald Journal Columns
October 1, 2007, Herald Journal

How to properly spoil a child

By JENNIFER GALLUS

I’m not sure why I received a particular catalog because I don’t have any girl children, but I thumbed through it anyway.

The catalog is called “My Twinn, the just-like-me doll.” I found its contents fascinating.

A lucky little girl can have a custom doll made to look just like her, and the price isn’t cost prohibitive – it’s around $140.

The parent is instructed to send one or two photos of the child along with a form that goes into great detail about the child’s facial characteristics.

Hair color swatches are provided, a variety of eye color variants, skin color choices, hair length and hair style options, hair texture options, and facial profile outlines for parents to draw any freckles, moles, or birthmarks that are on the child’s face.

The catalog is full of examples of little girls and their matching twin dolls. Of course their hairstyles and clothing match, but the examples are quite impressive.

A parent could spend a small fortune on accessorizing both the doll and the child in matching attire. That’s where the bulk of the expense would come into play.

Everything from matching pajama sets can be found, to casual and formal wear. Eyeglasses can also be purchased for the doll.

Other accessories include doll casts, crutches, hospital gowns, and wheelchairs for those girls who get injured. I think that would immediately cheer up any injured girl.

The doll company’s web site is www.mytwinn.com and phone number is 800-469-8946.

I know my husband is thankful, just about every day, that we don’t have girls because he knows my clothing and accessory expenditures on a girl child would be out of control. He is correct!

I do have a lot of nieces so birthday gifts are often very girly items – that’s how I get my shopping fix.

Cute boy stuff is not nearly as readily available as cute girl clothing. However, I can do some financial damage when shopping for my boys, and I wouldn’t trade my boys for anything.

Of course, to properly spoil a girl or a boy, material items are not necessary. Providing a safe, loving, and happy home for children is the top priority in raising emotionally happy children.

Giving children plenty of attention and one-on-one time is extremely important. I struggle with this at times. I often make myself take time out from my unending list of projects to just sit down with my kids and play, talk, or read.

I love to listen to the radio in the car, but I will often turn it off just to give the boys a chance to talk.

I don’t think it’s possible to overly spoil kids with positive attention. We need to train ourselves to take the time to do it.

Kid-isms

This one really got me laughing. The boys were talking about souls that go to heaven. My 6-year-old asked, “If it’s just your soul, then how do we see each other in heaven?”

I told them what I believe, which is that you can still be seen how you looked here on earth, and that even though your body stays on earth after you die, you can have another “copy” of it in heaven.

Then my 8-year-old said, “It’s (souls) like hostas. They can get ran over – like by a skid loader – and then come back to life.”