Warning: session_start() [function.session-start]: Cannot send session cookie - headers already sent by (output started at /home/chris/public_html/wp-includes/version.php:10) in /home/chris/public_html/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wordpress-automatic-upgrade.php on line 119

Warning: session_start() [function.session-start]: Cannot send session cache limiter - headers already sent (output started at /home/chris/public_html/wp-includes/version.php:10) in /home/chris/public_html/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wordpress-automatic-upgrade.php on line 119


June 15, 2006

What Would Cinderella Do?

With a three year old in the house everything is a negotiation. Most recently we have moved on to the Cinderella Standard.

Everything that needs to be done is gauged by what a princess, namely Cinderella, would do in the same situation.

The short list:

Princesses do: wear dresses, wear tiaras, wear jewelry, eat candy

Princesses do not: wear stupid ugly clothes (this has a wide latitude that may or may not change from minute to minute), do not brush their hair, do not take baths or wash their hair,

Those princesses, they are a slovenly bunch.

The do and don’t lists are constantly evolving. And I find myself engaged in conversations that I never imagined I would have.

“I don’t want to take a bath.”

“Well, I’m sorry, you need to take a bath.”

“Princesses don’t take baths.”

“Yes they do. Princesses aren’t dirty.”

“No princesses not take baths.”


“Cinderella not take a bath. She take a shower.”

“Do you want to take a shower?”

“Cinderella has birds in the shower that pour the water on her.”

“Cinderella is a cartoon.”


“yes she is.”


At which point I question if I am really arguing about reality with a three year old.

Another day:

“Can you clean up your toys?”

“Cinderella not clean up her toys.”

“Cinderella had to clean the whole castle. And clean up all the stuff belonging to her mean step sisters. Remember the song? (here I sing the part of the song about Cinderella being very very busy) I think you can clean up your own toys.”

“Cinderella not clean when she had on her pretty clothes. I am the pretty Cinderella.”

I wonder if I can apply this to my own life.

“Sorry, no dinner tonight. I’m pretty Cinderella tonight.”

“Oh, too bad all your clothes are dirty. I was pretty Cinderella today.”

“Not tonight dear, pretty Cinderella doesn’t do that.”

The possibilities are endless.

Posted by Chris @ 7:43 am  

RSS feed for comments on this post.

The URI to TrackBack this entry is:


  1. owlhaven says:

    Hmmm…Cinderella mommy…ya think your hubby would buy that excuse?

    My 4 year old has a similar Cinderella obsession…

    Mary, mom to many

  2. Roxann says:

    I love it! WWCD! My new moto, I think! I love your site, you are an excellent writer, and obviously an even better mom. I enjoy what you do.


  3. Mir says:

    Who knew princesses were so grimy??

  4. Jamie says:

    First of all, I love the new blog look and the contrast of the baby shoe in the muck and grime. And I may have to use the line, “Princesses do not live in houses with overgrown shrubs” to my husband if he doesn’t break out the gas trimmers this weekend!

  5. Fold My Laundry Please says:

    Ah, to live the life of a princess! I think I’ll apply that principle in our house, too!

  6. Kristen says:

    I have two boys and no girls, so it’s always funny to hear about the negotiation tactics that pre-school aged females use (not too different from pre-school aged males, really, as long as Cinderella is replaced with Buzz Lightyear, I suppose).

    The new site looks great. Off to change links and bookmarks and bloglines subscriptions…

  7. Katie says:

    Princesses need pretty shoes, especially Cinderella. Can we go shoe shopping please?

  8. InterstellarLass says:

    My princess doesn’t like being a princess for too long. It gets itchy. Then she turns back into a tomboy.

  9. Meg says:

    Is Pretty Cinderella coming to NYC? ;)

    I can’t wait for this stage…

  10. Annalise says:

    Do you think you could make this work for you by focusing on all the scrubbing and mending and cleaning that the pre-Prince Cinderella did? ;-)

  11. Jen says:

    Ahh, I too have a 3yr old princess living in my house. Thank god she hasn’t asked to wear her princess outfit (tiara, dress, wand, and strange little shoes with more of a heel than I can wear).

    Apparently, princesses as a whole do not like to wash her hair. She likes her princess baths, but feverently opposes any form of pouring water over her head(I guess it would irritate her tender princess eyes).

  12. wookie says:

    At least your daughter is identifying with a human character. Mine wants to be a baby dolphin.

    On the plus side, I did get her to eat sashimi this way (it’s dolphin food!).

    But dolphins don’t put their laundry in the hamper, or their cups in the sink, or eat oatmeal. Dolphins seem to like orange juice and maple syrup though.

    Is this disconnect from reality normative?

  13. Suebob says:

    The girl has it all figured out, LOL. You get to be a Princess AND a slob. I don’t think that has ever been tried in a Disney movie but maybe you could get a screenplay out of this.

  14. Cmommy says:

    I wanted glass slippers to wear as a bride, but never found them, alas…

    the new blog colors are WAY COOL & SWEET! (yup, I’ve been parenting a 13 yr-old and singing with a 21 yr-old. My language skills are minimal!)

  15. rachel says:

    we have a bunch of books about princesses doing things that aren’t stereotypical - “princesses aren’t quitters” is one great one. Another is “I am really a princess” There’s a great one about a princess who does soccer too. I bet your librarian could help you find the cool princess books that will help her be a princess and yet still do the things you need her to do.

    My almost-3-yo will NOT wear pants (um, neither will the older ones with out a massive fight) because princesses wear dresses/skirts. I haven’t found a book to help with that yet.

  16. Danielle says:

    I want to be a pretty princess too!!

    I’m so scared of that age. My son was all about Thomas and that I could deal with but Marley is all about princesses and she is only 18 months old.

  17. moe says:

    You can keep the tiara, I just want the fairy godmother.

  18. Gwen says:

    At least the princess obsession hit your daughter. My 3-year old boy had a thing for Cinderella not too long ago. The only thing that made it okay for me was that he “manned it up” by calling her Cinda-gorilla!

  19. Eli's Mom says:

    How nice to be a princess all day! Ah the joys of toddlerhood!

  20. Daisy says:

    Have you read The Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munch? Every family with a princess needs to read it. Own it. Love it. Memorize it.

  21. stacey says:

    ok, that is just too funny. Can i play too?

  22. Blaine says:

    “Not tonight dear, pretty Cinderella doesn’t DO that.”……HA!!

  23. Mary says:

    How funny is that?

    My 2 year old thinks she is a princess too.

    She will ask from time to time,
    “Mommy, Me a princess?”

    To which I must reply, “Yes sweetie you are a princess”

    Maybe I should nip it in the bud now?

  24. Carola says:

    You made me laugh, once again…I think I’ll adopt the “pretty cinderella” phrase on my daily routine.

  25. peepnroosmom says:

    So funny-I’m gonna try the “not tonight, dear…” thing. Once again, you made me laugh out loud!

  26. cheeriobutt says:

    I love this post! I think I am stuck in the Before-princess mode as I always seem to have people screaming at me and I’m constantly scrubbing floors. Maybe if I twirl around in a pretty dress I won’t have to do that anymore and I can say “princesses don’t do that” the next time there is a poopy diaper waiting for me. But with my luck everyone will be just like those stepsisters when Cinderella came down in her 1st dress! “That’s mine! No it’s mine!”. By the way, ever heard of the game called “Pretty Pretty Princess”? You get to dress up in beads and necklaces and whoever has the most jewlery wins! Well I got a picture of my sons playing it! Ha! So I guess we’re not the only one who want to be a princess!

  27. Christine says:

    oh, oh, oh…I want to be pretty Cinderella. Can I tell my boss, “I can’t do that today. I’m pretty Cinderella.” I’m sure she’ll love that. ;)

  28. Lena says:

    Imagine how pissed the real Cinderella was when Prince Charming got her home. Five years later she’s a SAHM looking around thinking “What the hell have I gotten myself into AGAIN?”

  29. txmommy says:

    cinderella lives at our house too. Only I call my girls that when they complain, I’m nice like that. I say “oh poor cinderjenna, she has to do all the work” or whatever name is complaining at the time.

    Another princess we had living here was Rapunzel. DD #3 would only answer to that name during her hair growing up stage, and would eat or do things we told her Rapunzel did. Too bad that doens’t still work :)

  30. Coot says:

    I used to be a preschool teacher and one of my students would only answer to “Spider Man.” I was forever hearing about how Spider Man didn’t have to help clean up or finish his lunch.

    I think you could make money off a WWCD t-shirt!

    Love your website.

  31. Nohe 5 says:

    I have the same arguments with my princess. I also have to fight the reality game with my son over Thomas the Tank Engine. But at least there is a whole show about the trains taking a bath.

  32. Suburban Turmoil says:

    I love your new site, Chris! Princesses would have a site like this one. :)

  33. ben says:

    The only Princess we have to live up to is Fiona.

    Really, really.

  34. amanda says:

    Have you seen this rave review of your site?

  35. Melissa says:

    Good to know our house isn’t the only one with a “princess” who doesn’t want to wash. My daughter pulled the whole “birds dumped water over her head in a shower” thing too. I’m creative but I just can’t get the damn birds to cooperate with me on that one.

  36. jody says:

    LOL! We are so there. Derella this, and Derella that! “Derella” only wears satin nightgowns at our house.

    But, to my advantage, Derella makes poop on the potty, not a diaper. Princesses do NOT crap their pants. Whoo hoo!!!