When we started talking about Maisy’s third birthday party a few months ago I asked her what kind of theme she’d like for her party. Originally she said she wanted it to be all her favorite color: brown. Yup, for as long as she has been able to express “favorite color” it’s been brown. I’ve never met anyone whose fav was brown but that’s what it’s remained ever since. She always chooses it when it’s an option, I work hard to find brown clothes and at ECFE she was gifted a baggie of brown markers because there were always extras of that color!
As her day got closer, in typical three-nage fashion, she changed her tune. Then it was a Star Wars party, she wanted of course Chewbacca (he’s brown, after all!) and all the R2D2 and BB8 things she could find. Not my favorite but she and her dad LOVE Star Wars. I, on the other hand, have yet to watch an episode or movie of it. But then she changed her mind AGAIN! Now she wanted a princess party. If I could insert a gif here it would be the one where Ryan Reynolds slowly brings his hand to his head (this one!). A princess party, really? To me that was too cliche and I was not interested. Nevertheless, she persisted. So I eventually had to embrace it cause there was no stopping it. She decided Aurora was her jam this month so that’s what we are going with. She LOVES Disney princesses. Like loves them. She constantly pretends she is one of the princesses, Paul is often a prince and most of the time I’m assigned the villain character. Go figure. We are told exact phrases we are to say (and deviating just one word from the dictation is not tolerated.) It’s kind of funny - some kids are dinosaur or animal or space experts but Maisy is a princess expert. She knows the names and faces of tertiari-est of tertiary characters. We get her to eat meals by giving her obscure clues about a princess and she has to name them. (She now knows words like “aquatic” and “equestrian” and “reptile” because as soon as we would say “she lives in the sea” or “rides a horse in the wilderness” or “her best friend is a chameleon” she knew who we were talking about. If you can tell me in the comments who the princesses are in those clues I’ll have her give you a high five next time we see you!) She plays with figurines and has many varieties of them: sparkly, as babies, Little People, live action and cartoon, some random ones she finds and HAS to have from garage sales. Seriously this girl is obsessed. So I embraced it.
I primarily photograph weddings now. I shoot at many venues in the Twin Cities and have made great connections with people. I was at an event the other week and asked my friends at The Van Dusen if I could photograph Maisy in her princess gear for her birthday portraits in their castle. I was so excited to bring Maisy and show her around AND get to take photos of her. I scored a $30 spinning wheel on Facebook Marketplace that added to our shoot. Side note, when Maisy saw the spinning wheel her face lit up and she said “is this real life?” Back at the shoot we used the beautiful room where brides get dressed in all its natural light glory as well as the ballroom, front entrance and courtyard for Sleeping Beauty photos. She saw the grand staircase and was happy I brought her Cinderella gear so she could pretend to lose her glass slipper when the clock strikes midnight. A few people have asked me how I got her to do some of the poses. There was some guidance from me but honestly, this was all her just playing. This is how Maisy plays and she had a blast! That’s what I love most about this session. Knowing I helped my daughter feel special and important and beautiful and powerful and imaginative. Those are all things she absolutely is and I hope she always will be!