Since buying their Just Like You dolls, Campster and Sher Bear have been very excited about all things American Girl. When we were in Chicago, a Facebook friend mentioned the American Girl store there. While we didn’t have a chance to get to the store while in Chicago, I did see that there was also a Boston store.
I made a reservation online for the American Girl Bistro. And this afternoon, after Aquarium School, we headed over to the store in Natick, just outside of Boston. The girls had been saving their money, and planning their purchases for weeks.
Well it was worth the wait. The girls were in heaven. And, surprisingly, even Jor Man found the place delightful. There were two levels of dolls, books, clothes and accessories. So much to look at. Much addition and subtraction was done. “If I bought this, could I still buy this?”
We came in time for tea, but the tea menu (though lovely) was not accommodating to my new gluten-free diet. So we ate dinner. Dinner was $16.95 per person for all but Sher Bear, who was able to eat from the $9.95 4-year-old and under menu. Yes, it was expensive. And the portions were mostly doll-sized! But the smiles on the kids’ faces were worth every penny.
The dolls were able to join us at the table thanks to special doll seats that attached to the table itself. The waitress brought out little chocolate chip muffins for the dolls to share with the girls. Everyone who works there was very warm, friendly and willing to listen to my kids’ endless stories with enthusiasm.
I enjoyed the décor. Little details like doll hangers in the bathroom stalls made me chuckle. It was a little girl's dream come true.
I snuck and bought each girl’s doll a new t-shirt with American Girl Boston on it. I hope they will have the dolls for years to come, and will remember our trips to Boston when they see the shirts in the future.
We have watched several of the American Girl Movies - and they are a great jumping off point for discussions of history. I am hoping that when Campster is able to read chapter books, she will enjoy reading their books. I think their historical fiction is, while not great literature, a fine start for historical study that may ignite an interest in the child that can then be followed up with other books. I do not care, however, for their other books which are more "how to" books - as I find them to be too modern and self-indulgent.
Sher Bear bought a hair care kit for her doll, and can't wait to try it tomorrow. Campster bought roller skates for her doll, and slippers for herself. The doll sized puppy that she had intended to buy was sold out. We had an opportunity to discuss how we handle such disappointments.
But my very favorite moment of the visit was when Jor Man pulled me aside. “Mom,” he said, “I want to spend some of my money to buy hairstyling for the girls’ dolls. Do you think that is a wise way to spend my money?”
“I think it is a kind way to spend it.” I said. So Jor Man went and told the girls that he would pay for each of them to have their dolls’ hair done. Many hugs were exchanged. And the decision-making began. What color ribbons? Which hair-do? They have a whole section of the store for hair styling. Little barber chairs line the counter, with mirrors overhead to give a full view of the styling process. The girls were quite pleased with the results, and with their brother.
Wish you were here!