Nothing Fills Me With More Mom Angst And Loathing Than $78 Bunny Nightlights
Every day it happens. I receive numerous paper catalogues in my mailbox and numerous electronic catalogues in my inbox. When Restoration Hardware recently sent out 17 pounds of paper catalogues to their customers (And I am a Restoration Hardware customer, owning both a sofa and dining room table from the amazingly expensive, perfectly-art directed aspirational lifestyle brand that I purchased on sale after scrimping and saving for eons, thankyouverymuch) I was livid. What a waste of paper! How amazingly ecologically wasteful!
And then I took the Baby and Kid’s Sourcebook and almost wept at how adorable all the children’s rooms looked.
And I feel this way constantly. There is a certain type of feeling you get when confronted with items that you want for your children, adorable, beautiful, precious, perfect items that you somehow think would make your life better, or their life better, or that tie into this whole sort of mystical ideal we have of childhood, especially when your own childhood didn’t have these elements of whimsy or beauty.
I grew up poor.
And I don’t mean poor in the sense that I didn’t have enough to eat or gifts under the Christmas tree, but poor in the sense that my parents would have never considered buying me a $78 nightlight.
Because, and any rational person gets this, a $78 nightlight is stupid. But I refuse to believe I’m the only parent out there who doesn’t see items like this, the $35 cardboard houses:
The $48 Monster Blocks:
The adoringly designed Land Of Nod Playrooms and WANT these things. The things aren’t just beautiful to look at, but signify something greater: creativity, organization, and fun.
If I had these things my kids would be happier. They would have better memories. They would magically keep their rooms cleaner. I would like looking at these things.
I think all of these things and then some when looking at what I can buy my children.
It’s cool and beautiful and fun and it shows that I’m the sort of parent who likes nice things. This is basically all about me. Or you. Kids don’t care.
And it’s terribly stupid. We all know kids don’t give one wit about $78 nightlights. Any Pinterest board can show you a kid would be just as happy with a three dollar Christmas clearance string of fairy lights on their ceiling. Any kid would be happy to sit with mom and dad and make their own cardboard doll houses from discard boxes and markers. We all get that you create memories with your kids by doing things with them, and not by buying them things.