This post is full of gender stereotypes. As a mother of girls and now a boy, I gave up long ago on staying gender neutral when it comes to toys. You see, they know from birth that they are boys or girls. I gave my oldest a toy drill and she used it as a hair dryer. Hank loves to flip the baby doll stroller over and play with the wheels. Of course, I do have my limits. Our house is a Barbie and Bratz free zone.
About three years ago, my daughters begged me to buy them Snap 'n Style dolls. I resisted as long as I could because we already had Madeline, her friends, babies, and American Girl dolls. But, Grandma bought some and I eventually caved. I really thought they were too babyish. So, they've sat in the basement until this summer. Goldie and the neighbor girl, she's 8, play with them everyday. I love this toy because Goldie doesn't need any help. She can just be one of the girls, enjoying her dolls. The clothes snap onto the front of the dolls with one finger, or several fingers if you happen to have some low muscle tone. The hat and shoes are hard for her to put on, but she doesn't seem to care and it gives her a challenge.
Now, I'm not a huge princess fan, but when I saw this styling kit at my sister-in-law's house, I knew Goldie had to have one. It has a flat iron and a curling iron. The flat iron works like tongs, which the OT has been using to help Goldie develop pre-scissor skills. The curling iron is similar, but you only need to use your thumb to open it. After a couple months of play, Goldie can use the flat iron. She's only doing straight hairstyles, for now! I picked it up at Wal-mart for around $15. I think. I'm sure it was under $20, so don't buy it from Amazon for $35!