Favorite Colors, Mermaids, & Finding Your Voice

Jill loves all things The Little Mermaid.
She loves the songs, the fish, the crabs, the ride at Disneyland…but above all else, she loves Ariel.
That red headed princess is her favorite. It’s the princess she gets most excited about, the movie that makes her bounce up and down excitedly when we put it on. In fact, I will contend that there is just about nothing cuter than hearing Jill try to sing “Part of that woooooooorllllldd…..”  
Also, she can do a pretty killer dance move when Under the Sea comes on.


The other day, I wandered into a Disney Store in the mall. I really don’t even know why I did. I mean, we have annual passes to Disneyland, so we’ve seen it all before…besides, let’s be honest, my kids need another ANYTHING like they need a hole in the head.
Even still, when I saw this little plush Ariel doll, I immediately gasped and clutched it to my chest as if I had found the lost treasure of Tutankhamen or something equally dramatic. As I stood in line to pay, I thought to myself “Why on EARTH am I buying this?”  The girls have millions of dolls, gazillions of toys.  In fact, if I’m being super honest with myself, if this was something Henry or Lucy was asking for, I would have said no without a second thought.  And yet, here I am, waiting my turn to pay money for something simply because it’s Jill’s favorite. And I kept thinking this through…mulling it over…trying to figure it out…because, so you know, my brain is always and forever thinking and mulling over SOMETHING.  It never stops.  Ever.
Mama Guilt creeping in at the thought that not only was I not also buying something for the others…but I would tell them to take a hike if they begged for a toy.  Was Jill secretly my favorite?  What the heck?
And then it dawned on me.
  Jill is non-verbal.  Truth be told, there’s a lot we don’t know about her.  
In fact, we don’t even know what her favorite color is.  
Henry adores all things green.  And there is no such thing as Too Much Pink for Lucy.  Actually, if Sparkle was a color, that would be Lu’s fave.
But for Jill, she can’t tell us which is her favorite color.  And honestly, that realization, that I don’t even know what color my four-year-old daughter loves most…just killed me inside.  Knife.  Twisting.  Heart.
Such a simple everyday thing that you take for granted. I about lost it in the middle of the Disney Store.  I did that thing where you hold your breath, nonchalantly wipe tears, and recreate Lamaze breathing. It was a harsh reality to suddenly discover.  It put her needs and disabilities in perspective in that moment.  
Don’t even get me started on the fact that I have yet to hear her say “I love you, Mommy.”  I know she does.  And she snuggles and kisses in a way that is undeniably Love.  But the words…I cannot wait.  I hope I get to hear them someday.  It will be an awesome day.
“Mommy I love you.  And by the way, my favorite color is blue.” 
But you know what?  You know what we DO know? We know she loves Ariel.


Sebastian.  Flounder.  Scuttle.  Even King Triton.
I may not know what my girl’s favorite color is, but I know who her favorite character is. And you know what else?  Maybe that means I’m a sucker for all things Little Mermaid.  Maybe that means I jump up and down, cheering and clapping, looking like a fool outside of the Ariel’s Undersea Adventure.  Maybe that means I’m seriously considering buying the movie soundtrack and playing it on loud for my girl. I don’t really care.


Because this? These little arm gestures when Ariel is singing?  Copying her movements.  Humming along. IMG_9727 This grin.  Rapt attention. Smiles. Ariel may have exchanged her voice for a boy…but my girl is showing us her voice in a different way.

And I love that we get to figure it out.  Together.

* * * *

All of these things are true.
In fact, this was a post brewing in my brain for a few weeks now.  
So imagine how quickly I jumped at the opportunity to tell my readers that Disney’s The Little Mermaid is being re-released for the first time on Blu Ray and HD Digital on October 1st.   Planets = aligned. But there’s more!

Leave a comment in this post telling me “How do you encourage your children to follow their dreams?” (even if you have to interpret what those dreams might be!), and one winner will be selected to win a $50 Visa Gift Card and a Little Mermaid Diamond Edition Blu-ray Combo Pack.
I mean, really?  
That’s pretty awesome.
Besides, if Jill loves it…it’s gotta be good.      


No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “”#SweepstakesEntry””; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post”
c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 9/9/13 – 10/15/13.
Be sure to visit the Disney’s Little Mermaid page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!


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I'm a mom to four. A wife to one. I believe in story. I love telling you about mine and would love to hear yours. There's really no sense in wasting our suffering and not sharing in each other's joy. We're all in this together...even if it doesn't always feel like it.

Latest posts by jeannett (see all)


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    Buddy Garrett says:

    We encourage our daughter to explore and pursue the things she is interested in. We want her to do that we are interested in the things she is interested in.

  3. 154

    I try to teach them that it is OK to be just who they are.

  4. 155
    Michelle Tucker says:

    I help them achieve those goals by gently helping them out when needed.
    michelletucker at baconnation dot net

  5. 156
    Michelle Tucker says:

    tweeted: https://twitter.com/iiiyadirf/status/390164744000118784
    michelletucker at baconnation dot net

  6. 157
    Amanda Sakovitz says:

    I encourage them to go for what they believe in

    pokergrl8 at gmail.com

  7. 158
    Amanda Sakovitz says:
  8. 159

    I was soooo excited to find out that little mermaid was being released out of the vault again. It’s such a great movie and I can’t wait to get my #teamjilly shirts :)

  9. 160
  10. 161

    I don’t have any kids. But I’d try to encourage them by helping them find ways to actually achieve what they want, and supporting them however I could.

  11. 162
    Thomas Murphy says:

    I tell my kids to do whatever makes them happy.

  12. 163
    Thomas Murphy says:
  13. 164
    Caitlin McClure says:

    I plan on unschooling, letting them learn what they like and focus on their passions instead of forcing them to do things they aren’t interested in

  14. 165
    Jennifer Sims says:

    I encourage my kids to explore and try new things but when they find something they love I try to open opportunities to contiue doing that activity. If it sports or dancing etc.

  15. 166
    Christian Alejandro says:

    I do my best to help support them in their dreams.

  16. 167
    Christian Alejandro says:
  17. 168

    I encourage my boys to follow their hearts and try to achieve their dreams. I let them know it’s okay to fail sometimes, because the only true failure is to never have tried.

  18. 169
  19. 170

    I don’t have children but keeping a positive attitude helps tons

  20. 171
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  22. 173

    By helping them to believe in their self and that with a lot of practice and hard work they can accomplish anything

  23. 174
    tina reynolds says:

    I let them know anything is possible if they believe in it and that I believe in them and will always be behind them.

  24. 175
    tina reynolds says:
  25. 176

    I teach them and support them.