Before my younger sister Gwen was born, my father was really against buying a lot of toys. He thought that you just threw kids outside to play and they entertained themselves.

So my brother Shawn and I played a lot of board games with Mom. And read books. (So many books that Mom’s voice actually gave out and the doctor told her not to spend more than two hours reading out loud a day.) And played with a bunch of Mom’s toys from when she was a kid. And played with my great-grandmother’s minks.


But we didn’t have any dress-up clothes. Even when I was in senior kindergarten, and Shawn was in preschool. We had to learn about playing dress-up at school.

One day, Shawn wanted to play dress-up at home. But we didn’t really have anything to do that with.  Shawn started to get upset because he really wanted to play dress up. Mom had to improvise.

Back then, I only wore dresses. (I know I’m wearing pants in that drawing.  Drawing a kid kneeling in a dress is hard.) Shawn was very much a stereotypical little boy who loved wearing T-shirts with trucks on them. So Mom gave Shawn some of my dresses to play with, since dress-up is all about wearing different clothing than what you’d usually wear.

Shawn and I thought it was hilarious, and we even put on matching dresses.

Mom took photos. And showed them to Dad.

Suddenly, we had real dress up clothing. And Shawn got a bunch of toy trucks, dinosaurs, and this awesome mountain-crane thing.