You don't want to eat. After nine months, you want to drink. In lieu of a big bottle of Three Olives vodka (grape flavor, please), we'll take one of those "cakes" they make at Babycakes of Scottsdale. These smart folks obviously understand the challenges of new mothers: All you really need, to go with your cocktail, is a crapload of blankets, onesies and socks, since Junior will go through a basket of laundry faster than you can say, "Make mine a double!" And because you'll be weepy (after catching a glimpse of yourself in the mirror), your own personal "babycake" will distract you, constructed of useful baby accessories but covered with flowers and jewels, festooned to look just like that cake you wouldn't dare touch a bite of. Ah, but a girl can dream. And a good visual never hurts.
No, really, we mean it. Have you been to the mall lately, walked by a certain shop that offers your 6-year-old the chance to romp like Christina and Britney, complete with long wig, platforms and micro-mini? And the makeup? Oh, it's enough to make us want to home school. (Well, not quite.)
But we don't want to push Annabelle toward a nunnery, either. If we've learned one thing, it's that as soon as you forbid your kid another M&M, you've created a chocoholic.
What's a mom to do? Head to Lollilocks, our favorite new kiddy salon. The kid haircut concept is nothing new, and those other spots are cute, sure. The kids can watch videos so their bangs won't come out too crooked, but we needed a little pizzazz. That's where the "Spa Buddies" package comes in. For just a little too much money, Annabelle and Kate got an afternoon of pampering a seat in a teeny-tiny hot pink spa chair, feet soaked, toes painted, flower decal applied. Same for the fingers. The girls were delighted, and we all loved the candy-themed décor, the yummy line of marshmallow- and orange-scented lotions and bath products, the cute hair accessories.
The girls felt like princesses, we were out of there for under $50, and no one looked like a streetwalker.
But before you beat feet to the closest pet store and purchase your own tiny tail-wagger, we recommend perusing the bundles of spastic joy available through Arizona Puppies. Unlike many of the so-called "puppy mills" stationed in malls throughout the Valley, this cooperative of "ethical toy dog breeders" ensures the AKC-certified Chihuahuas they're selling are completely disease free and are bred in a humane manner. Their selection is also quite staggering, offering a variety of different Chihuahua breeds and sizes, including longhairs, shorthairs, deer types, appleheads, and teacups. (A sister site, www.aztoydogs.com, offers such other breeds as Pomeranians, Shih Tzus, and Papillons).
Pricing is a little steep, starting at $500 and going as high as $1,650. But, hey, no one said living the sweet life was gonna be cheap.
Dizon, daughter of a Filipino tailor, moved to Phoenix with her family when she was 5. After graduating from Phoenix College's fashion-design program, it's been nothing but award after award for Dizon, culminating in 2006 with a couple of fashionista biggies: Designer of the Year honors from both the Arizona Fashion Foundation and LabelHorde. While Jenny's still something of a regional phenomenon, don't be shocked when you see her beguiling creations bust a move onto the national scene. We think you'll be delightfully surprised. Well, most of you.
On one wall of the 10,000-square-foot orange-and-cream themed erotic emporium read the store's motto, "Relax... it's only sex." And while Flynt signed books and body parts, it was clear that the reason folks were so enthused was that Flynt had brought a touch of Hollywood decadence to Sand Land, and made that decadence as uncontroversial as an ice cream parlor, though no less titillating in the process. Even more than the magazines and the books that Flynt's Hustler empire mass-produces, the Hustler Hollywood stores are his ultimate triumph over America's prudes. Somewhere, Jerry Falwell's 300-pound corpse is rolling over. Of this, you can be sure.
But think twice before putting that thing in your pocket. You wouldn't want to risk a misfire.