Polly Pocket has invaded my home. Her tiny feet leave no prints on the carpet, but her wee rubber clothes are everywhere - between sofa cushions, strewn across tables, tumbling down the hall beneath the cat's paws, dangling from the fingers of a younger sister as the older one shouts that they're HER toys. Polly herself just keeps smiling, her plastic blonde hair in perpetually perky ponytails. She's not alone, either. She's got an accomplice – a dark-haired, mysterious girl named Ana, dangerously sophisticated in her strapless purple evening gown and go-go boots, a purple flower tucked into her molded hair.
And they're not the first wave. The Groovy Girls arrived months ago, insinuating themselves into our lives with their sweet smiles and funky clothes. They've got their own diner booth, bed, sleeping bag, sofa, snowboard, pets, and bean bag chair. Not to mention a wardrobe any adult would envy. There's even a Groovy Boy, who inhabits a corner of my two-year old daughter's crib, where his single jacket/shirt combo is continuously removed (by her) and put back on (by me). Poor guy only has the one outfit and he can't even keep it on.
It all began innocently enough, years ago, when Winnie the Pooh invited over a few friends from the Hundred Acre Wood. Were we fooled by his vacuous, honey-addled eyes and self-proclaimed lack of brain? Piglet seemed small enough, of little consequence, and Eeyore, well, he could just mope quietly in a corner without bothering anyone. But then came Tigger, bouncing and pouncing and TTFNing all over the place, and we were quickly outnumbered.
Now, I stumble from room to room, dancing around Polly's carrying case, stepping over Groovy Angelique and her friend Myra the mermaid. I shove their clothes into bins, bags, boxes, and try to push them out of sight, at least for the few hours when the sun has gone down and so have the kids. When I plop onto the sofa to catch my breath, something soft taps me on the shoulder. There's Pooh, forgotten in the rush to bed. I nestle him into the crook of my arm and smile.