American Girl Dolls Really Need to Get Back to Their Roots
by @emmaladyrose

“…The storylines that I remember best from the American Girl books are the ones where the characters interacted with the big issues of their times. Samantha marches for women’s suffrage and demands better child labor laws, Molly knits socks with her classmates for the war effort, Felicity eschews gender norms in Colonial America and Addy grapples with racism and segregation. The beautiful outfits and fun (overpriced) accessories featured in the catalogs were likely part of what drew many of us to these dolls. But it’s the stories and the bravery of the characters that stayed with us after we stopped wanting to dress up like them.

It’s not often that young girls have the opportunity to see themselves in stories of U.S. history. Growing up, American Girls gave us a reason to learn about and relate to topics that might be hard for an elementary school child to connect with otherwise. As a white 6-year-old reading about Addy Walker’s journey on the underground railroad, I was able to connect with the cruelty of slavery in a way that I wasn’t in my classrooms.

The American Girl books didn’t shy away from unpleasant time periods in U.S. history – they forced young girls to confront them and think critically about the world. Somehow I doubt that a doll who is fashioned only to "look like me” has quite the same impact.“

Read the full article.


7 Books that Celebrate Girl Power
via @blogher

“Here are seven books that remind us all that girls can achieve anything they set their minds and hearts to.

1. Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women by Catherine Thimmesh

Did you know that a woman invented windshield wipers? Liquid paper? Chocolate chip cookies? Learn the inspirational stories behind some of the most ingenious women ever in this colorful, informative collection of biographies. Readers will also be encouraged to dream up some of their own inventions and will learn how to take their ideas from the lightbulb in the brain to the patent office.

2. Grace for President by Kelly DiPucchio and LeUyen Pham

"Where are all the girls?” asks a puzzled Grace, when her teacher shows her class a picture of the U.S. presidents throughout history. Determined to change the face of politics, Grace presents herself as a candidate for President in the school’s mock election. Follow along with Grace as she discovers more about what it means to be a leader and learn more about the U.S. electoral system along the way.

3. Zephyr Takes Flight by Steve Light

Does your daughter dream of flying? Little Zephyr loves everything about airplanes, and sneaks away into a secret world where she can pursue her dream of piloting a plane. This beautifully illustrated book is ideal for the dreamy yet strong-willed girl that lives in in all of our daughters.

4. The Girls’ Book of Wisdom: Empowering, Inspirational Quotes from over 400 Fabulous Females by Catherine Dee

Over 400 famous women, from Maya Angelou to Eleanor Roosevelt, share their words of wisdom in this inspirational tome. The quotes are grouped in 44 categories such as confidence, creativity, friendship and happiness. These inspiring quotes also make great mother/daughter discussion topics, and might just make you laugh, cry or even inspire you to take that next big step. Each quotation also features a brief bio on the author.

5. Bad Girls: Sirens, Jezebels, Murderesses, Thieves and other Female Villians by Jane Yolen and Heidi Stemple

Beloved children’s author Jane Yolen and co-author Heidi Stemple introduce readers to the more infamous women of history in this collection of bios. Twenty-six notorious women are profiled, from Tituba to Mata Hari. Readers are encouraged to consider these women in the context of their times before passing judgment on their dastardly deeds, and at the end of each chapter, the authors appear in comic format to discuss the guilt or innocence of each alleged villain.

6. Rachel: The Story of Rachel Carson by Amy Ehrlich

As a little girl, Rachel Carson loved to explore the environment around her. She translated this passion into her work as a biologist and environmental advocate. Many say that Carson’s book The Silent Spring spurred the environmental movement, and this book will inspire budding ecologists or indeed any child who loves and cares about the health of our ecosystem.

7. Don’t Kiss the Frog! Princess Stories with Attitude by Fiona Waters

Seven writers have teamed up to offer alternatives to the usual fairy tale endings in this charming and hilarious anthology. The princesses represented are anything but demure, and they use their intelligence, wit and strength to make a mark on the world, encouraging all tiara- and tutu-loving readers to do the same. “

Read more here:

Pop musician Grimes attacks sexism in the industry
via @TeleMusicNews

“Canadian musician Grimes has criticised sexism and disrespect in the music industry and said she is taking a break from her career because she doesn’t want "to have to compromise my morals in order to make a living”.

Grimes, who is 25, achieved critical acclaim with her third album Visions, released last year. In a 600-word statement posted on her Tumblr account last night, Grimes wrote about her experiences of being molested and judged on her body.

She also commented on men who have patronised her professionally, writing: “I’m tired of men who aren’t professional or even accomplished musicians continually offering to ‘help me out’ (without being asked), as if i did this by accident and i’m gonna flounder without them”[sic].

Grimes added that her comments weren’t aimed at all men, writing she was “sad that my desire to be treated as an equal and as a human being is interpreted as hatred of men, rather than a request to be included and respected”.

The singer posted two dictionary definitions for the words “waif” and “cute” - words that are often applied to her – suggesting they mean “homeless” and “sexually attractive”.

Grimes concluded by saying that she had “the best job in the world” but was tired of being disrepected and that she was “taking the time to overhaul everything” now that her tour and album promotional cycle was over.

Last summer RnB musician Nicki Minaj was recorded discussing a lack of respect in the industry, saying that women had to be “a beast” to be treated fairly as a musician. She said: “When I am assertive, I’m a bitch. When a man is assertive, he’s a boss.”“


Lady Clementina Hawarden, one of Britain’s first female photographers
More photos here:

Some of the earliest photos of Victorian women have come to light in a revealing album of prints from the pioneering days of photography. The set of pictures taken by Lady Clementina Hawarden, one of Britain’s first female photographers, is set to fetch £150,000 at auction.

Sir Patrick Stewart calls on ‘one million men’ to promise an end to violence against women
via Yahoo News

“NEW YORK—Sir Patrick Stewart stood in the center of the Diplomat Ballroom at the UN Hotel here on Friday, pounding his fist methodically against a podium, each thump punctuated with a number ("One … two … three …”) until he got to nine.

“Every nine seconds in the United States a woman is assaulted or beaten,” Stewart said. “Every nine seconds.”

The 72-year-old British-born actor, best known for his roles in “X-Men” and “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” served as host for the launch of “Ring The Bell,” a global campaign calling on one million men to make one million “concrete, actionable promises” to end violence against women.
“Violence against women is the single greatest human rights violation of our generation,” Stewart said.

“This is a call to action—not an action that will make things better in six months’ time or a year’s time,” he continued, “but action that might save someone’s life and someone’s future this afternoon, tonight, tomorrow morning.”

The event—coinciding with International Women’s Day and the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women at United Nations headquarters—was attended by about 200 assorted actors, activists, politicians, filmmakers and musicians, including Michael Bolton, who fought back tears while talking about his work lobbying for the extension of the Violence Against Women Act passed by Congress earlier this week.

“We will continue to battle,” Bolton, a father of three daughters, said.

Later, Stewart received a standing ovation after recalling the repeated violence he witnessed as a 5-year-old child at home.

“I became an expert,” Stewart said. “I knew exactly when to open a door and insert myself between my father’s fist and my mother’s body.”

He said his father was “an angry and unhappy man who was not able to control his emotions—or his hands.”

“My mother did not do anything to provoke my father,” Stewart added. “But even if she did, violence is not the answer.”

Dallas Mayor Michael Rawlings, who in January launched an initiative to combat domestic violence in his city, suggested “dialing up the shame” for men who commit violent acts against women.

“You can call a man who hits a woman a lot of things,” Rawlings said, “but you can’t call him a man.”

Don McPherson, a former NFL quarterback and college football hall-of-famer turned feminist, agreed.

“We don’t raise boys to be men,” McPherson said. “We raise them not to be women, or gay men.”
McPherson compared the fight to end violence against women with the one to end racism.
“White people confronted white people to fight racism,” he said. “Men need to confront men.”
In a videotaped promise to act, Sir Richard Branson relayed a recent, troubling anecdote from a humanitarian visit he made to Africa:

“Yesterday I was at a clinic we run in Africa called Bhubezi Clinic and there were 40 women in the room. Somebody asked the women if any of them had been raped, and there was laughter amongst the women. We asked why they were laughing. The women said, ‘Ask the question: Has anybody in this room not been raped?’ Not one woman put up her hand.”“

The original article includes a video. You can watch it here:


10 Celebrities Who Aren’t Afraid to Use the F Word by @garnethenderson

“I dare you to say it. The F word.

Ok, I’ll go first. I’M A FEMINIST. Odd as it may seem that “feminist” is such a loaded label in 2013, the fact is that there are a lot of misconceptions out there about feminism. Let’s start with Exhibit A, commonly known as Taylor Swift:

“I don’t really think about things as guys versus girls. I never have. I was raised by parents who brought me up to think if you work as hard as guys, you can go far in life.”

Woah, nelly. That’s what Taylor said when The Daily Beast asked her if she identifies as a feminist. Now, here’s the thing. I’m not the feminist police. Though I am a feminist personally, it’s fine with me if a woman doesn’t want to identify as a feminist. But the issue here is that Taylor Swift’s idea of feminism is way off. Feminism isn’t about “guys versus girls.” Feminists aren’t by definition man-haters – though people often label them that way. Feminism is about empowering women, and ensuring that women and men receive equal treatment and equal opportunities.

And here’s the other problem: Taylor’s statement that working “as hard as guys” will get women far in life also misses the mark. First, it implies that guys all work really hard and that women need to work to get on their level. I think any woman with life experience knows that’s a load of B.S. And second, women often don’t get as far as men even if they work just as hard, or harder. Because women rarely get paid as much as men, and are often passed over completely for jobs and other opportunities simply because of their sex. So it’s cool with me if Taylor Swift doesn’t consider herself a feminist, but the problem is that what she’s talking about isn’t feminism.

T.Swift isn’t the only celeb who has shied away from the F word. When accepting Billboard’s Woman of the Year Award in 2012, Katy Perry said, “I am not a feminist, but I do believe in the strength of women.”

Again, if Katy Perry doesn’t want to be a feminist? That’s cool with me. But you know what? I think she just might be one. Because she’s a smart, successful, self-made woman, and that in and of itself is quite a feminist feat. Say what you will about her music or her overtly sexual image, but Perry knows what she’s doing. She knows how to turn out hits and keep herself in the public eye, which is what it takes to be hugely successful as a pop star. She’s openly talked about her support for Planned Parenthood, and as she says herself, she believes in the strength of women. I would call that feminism. I doubt she would like it if she were getting paid less than a male artist just because she’s a woman. So why do women like Katy Perry and Taylor Swift shy away from the label?

I think the fact that these successful women don’t want to label themselves feminists shows that there is a lot of power in the nasty stereotypes of feminists that misogynists– or anti-feminists, if you will – like to create. Feminists hate men. Feminists are ugly. Feminists want to control men. Feminists are crazy. You know what? Bull. Shit. Feminists are people who believe in equal rights and opportunities for women. That doesn’t involve taking anything away from anyone else.”

There’s also a great slideshow with quotes by feminist celebrities at the bottom of the page here:

How often have you wondered what exactly it is your friends do at work all day? Sure, you know Taylor has a degree in Health Administration and works at a hospital, Lauren has a job in communications, and Sarah does social work, but what do any of those things actually entail? And what about their career paths? How did they get to where they are now, and where do they see themselves going from here?

Our family, friends and co-workers are excellent resources for career-related information – from jobs we may want to pursue to professional development choices we may want to make. Yet too often our conversations about work begin and end with a job title.

This week The Pink Dinosaur is launching a new series aimed at providing insight into the lives of working women. Each post will feature one professional lady’s answers to the questions: What’s on your To Do list today? What’s on your To Do list for the future? If you created a To Do list for getting to where you are now, what would be on it?

Check back on Tuesday, January 21st, for the first post!

Anybody want a cookie?

Hello Lovelies! It’s me again. 

I sure have had a lot of time to think lately, and for me, thinking usually leads to writing. So here I am again actually writing something to you, rather than reblogging our favorite gifs and cackling loudly to myself while I devour the huge plate of Reese’s brownie cookies I made over the weekend.

Here’s what I’ve been thinking:

-What am I doing with my life? 

-Should I be doing something else with my life?

-Why am I so angry all the time?

-Do I need a therapist?

-Should I eat fewer cookies? I should probably eat fewer cookies and then maybe also quit grad school. *eats more cookies*

With all these stellar thoughts swirling around in my head, I started perusing the Internet (as one does) hoping to find some lovely lady-related writing to remind me that, if nothing else, in addition to cookies, I do love blogging lady-things for lady-people like you. 


Why I Left My Job - a blog by a 28 year old mom who left her job without having another job lined up (She’s still looking)


How to Write a Resume, You Magnificent Creature, You - a lovely post about eating pizza (among other things)


What To Do When You Don’t Like Your Job - a great post on what is quickly becoming my new favorite website 

AND THEN I realized what authors mean when they say that the key to being a writer is reading a lot, which is really that the key to being a person is listening to other people a lot, because there’s nothing like other people to remind you what it is to be human, that everyone is human, that you are human. 

…No, there was no pot in the brownie cookies. Yes, my epiphany makes it seem like there was some magical substance in the cookies that suddenly made me see what has been obvious all along (there isn’t, but I wish there was). I’ve just been so caught up in all the garbage and all the self-improvement nonsense lately that I forgot to take my own advice and cut myself a little slack for not being someone else’s idea of happy or productive. And as a result, that very simple fact that we are human and messy and not perfect and confused and confusing slipped right out of my head. …Oops!

Anybody want a cookie? I’ve got a few left.


Happy birthday to me!

Happy birthday to me!

Happy birthday to my bloooogggggggg!

Happy birthday to me!

*deep voice* (And many mooooore…)


The Pink Dinosaur turned one this weekend (!!!), and I celebrated the way I celebrate most things: with a good book, crappy television and lots of junk food, all consumed in a horizontal position on the couch. 

It’s been a great year, the awesomeness of which speaks for itself, specifically through all of you guys, who help make this my happy place :-)

In honor of the milestone, I will share with you the most important thing I’ve learned from Tumblr over the last year (30 seconds):

Never, ever, for any reason, search the “birthday” tag - people are gross!



Time to get back in the game after my Big Christmas Adventure! Well, it wasn’t that big or adventurous but it did involve a lot of driving and eating, so I am more than ready to get back to my regular routine. 

I did want to let you guys know about one particular Christmas present I got this year:

Having my own URL makes me feel super fancy schmancy, and I hope I can live up to the responsibility of the .com. For now it just redirects to my tumblr page, but we’ll see what the future holds. 

Hope you all had a wonderful week! xo


The 10 Weirdest, Wackiest and Most Weirdly Good Songs from Eurovision 2013
by @megsokay for VH1

Whether you missed Eurovision last week, have never heard of Eurovision until this week or don’t care what Eurovision is, I still recommend you watch some of these videos. They will make your Monday better.

Plus @megsokay is awesome and she made this list.
Creative Ladies: Sarah Maria Griffin

I’m very excited to feature Sarah Maria Griffin as today’s Creative Lady! Frankly, her long list of accomplishments is pretty impressive. Take a look at her bio: Sarah Maria Griffin is a writer from Dublin, Ireland, based in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in The Irish Times, The Rumpus, and The Stinging Fly, and… Read more »

Watch on

Camera issues mean a short video today. Also, Merritt Wever is amazing. 

Watch on

For the Love of Monday - Labor Day

Hope your day was as random as mine was!

Watch on

Of course I posted my first weekly “For the Love of Monday” video on a Tuesday. Of course I did.