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This morning started out as any other, aside from being a brisk 28 degrees.  The alarm clock went off, I turned it off and went back to sleep.  Ten minutes later, the alarm clock went off, and again I turned it off and went back to sleep.  Finally, the third time it went off, I rolled out of bed, put on my cozy birthday bath robe and went to wake up the crew. Maya is always first on my list because it takes her the longest to pick out her clothes.  In the past, I have laid out choices for her and let her pick from there.  These days she is old enough and fashion savvy enough to pick out her own clothes.  She typically does a great job.  This morning was no different.  She happily picked the silver velour sweat suit with the pink hearts.  We call it silver because she refuses to wear gray.  Go figure.  We did all the typical morning stuff: breakfast, hair, shoes, and socks. Then IT happened, Maya’s inner fashion diva reared her head and arrived with a vengeance.  The tears, the shouting, and the looks of death, mixed with a deep hacking cough painted an image that were unsetteling, even to me.

What warrants this type of demonic meltdown at 7:50 in the morning when school starts at 8:00? A jacket of course. More specifically, a beautiful down filled Columbia parka.  The problem, it was purple. Just know that jackets are a problem every morning.  California kids are not used to wearing so many layers.  It tends to make her feel like she is being choked out.  Today was special though.  After days of angry searching and finally buying a lesser quality replacement coat, I had found Maya’s parka. The movers had carelessly stuffed it into a box of wrapping paper to fill the extra space in the box.  The box was simply marked “Office.” We had put it into storage and not thought twice about it. I hate movers. 

Anyway, the purple parka apparently was so unpalatable to Maya’s sense of fashion that it almost made her head explode.  The fact that it did not match just crushed her.  I finally had to give her a good incentive (threaten) to get her moving.  I thought as quick as my morning brain could about a suitable consequence for being late for school over a jacket.  My list of options was not very good, it started with death by purple parka (just kidding). I finally decided that the best consequence would be for me to revoke the right for her to pick out her own clothes.  One day for every minute we would be late and one additional day for every minute that I had to listen to the howling and whining of a 5-year-old diva. Maybe a little harsh, but truly effective.  This seemed to get her attention quickly.  Needless to say we were not late, but she still owes me a few days for the tantrum. 

I am pretty sure that she inherited this fashion sence from her Dad and Grandma. It’s a good thing she got it from somewhere, because she wasn’t going to get it from me.  Both her Dad and Grandma always look good and have much better heads for fashion than I.  As far as I am concerned, jeans and a cozy sweatshirt are almost always appropriate for anything that I have going on.  Not to mention you can dress jeans up or dress them down.

When Maya finally arrived at school she was greeted in the hallway by a well-meaning yet unexpecting Paraprofessional (Teacher’s Assistant).  She kindly smiled and told Maya how cute she looked this morning, and how pretty her jacket was.  Maya just  scowled at her.  The final comment from the Paraprofessional: “Maya, I am surprised that you didn’t pick out a PINK coat.”