So this came in the mail yesterday:

American Girl

This is the kind of thing that I would normally hide from Annabel immediately, but yesterday I was carrying James and some groceries and I asked her to grab the mail. I should know better than to let her get the mail at this time of year. It’s a ticking time bomb of toy catalogues.

So Annie sees the AG catalogue and is like, “OHMYGOSH AN AMERICAN GIRL DOLL BOOK!” And I was like, “…Yes. It’s a book.” But she realized immediately it wasn’t a book and was, in fact, things to buy. Damn her teachers for teaching her how to read.

Since I had a bunch of groceries to put away and needed to start dinner, I handed her a pen and told her to circle all the things she wanted to ask for at Christmas and her birthday (you know, so Santa and the Birthday Fairies could order the knock-off versions at Target). It worked – she went over every detail of that catalogue for over an hour. She spent so much time on it that I joked that she should have drawn an X through the things she didn’t want. But later, after she went to bed, I looked through the catalogue and was pleasantly surprised.

Well, okay, I wasn’t surprised that she circled the most ridiculous (and ridiculously priced) item in the entire catalogue:

a horse-drawn carriage, nbd

A horse-drawn carriage. $275 for that bad boy, and don’t forget the $98 horse, because you can’t have a horse-drawn carriage without…a horse. Spoiler alert, there is no Target rip-off for this because it’s INSANE.

After I was resuscitated from the horse/carriage price tag, I started flipping through the rest of the pages. I expected every single item to be circled, but the majority of the pages had no pen marks at all. I also expected her to choose a bunch of doll clothes, and she did, but the kind of clothes she picked was interesting:

sporty stuff

All sports stuff (and books)! I like it. And apparently she anticipates her doll suffering a terrible sports injury because she also wants all of this:

doctor stuff

But this is my favorite:

nerd alert!

I can barely handle the adorable nerdiness of this! The lab set, and the books, and locker (and…the classroom door?)! School is cool, Annie.

She also circled this girl, which…I dunno, does she think she’s for sale? Does she want the outfit she’s wearing? The doll she’s holding? So many questions.

This person is not for sale

I went through the whole catalogue (I like the historical dolls), and then I got to “Doll of the Year,” Isabelle. Isabelle is a dancer who apparently excels at many different dancing styles.

she's a dancer

And she has perfect hair. She also has great clothes that, surprise! She designs and sews herself, in her spare time.


Isabelle is an overachiever who makes me feel bad about myself.

Don’t get me wrong, I do love (the idea of) American Girl Dolls. I love that Annie still absolutely adores her doll, and she does all sorts of imaginative role-playing games and stories with it. I also love that Annie doesn’t know the difference between “brand” and “knock-off.”