I have posted this before but love it! Also, we have an important meeting today and I don’t have time to write a Shannonigans article for this week but I don’t want to keep putting it off. So here you go…

olivia-by-Ian-Falconer Before we had our daughter my husband and I were against letting our future child watch television. When we had an actual child we realized we needed something to occupy our daughter’s attention when we were doing things like cooking dinner or just taking a break. Our main problem with television is the advertisements and the way that children’s physical appearance in most cartoons are depicted. I have talked about the thin waisted and big chested Princess Merida of Disney’s Brave. Unfortunately, this is true of many heroines on television.

One day while my daughter and I were at our local bookstore a book by Ian Falconer with minimalistic drawings and a pig in a red dress caught my daughter’s eye. She sat down and looked at the pictures for a good thirty minutes so I did what any parent would do, I bought the book in hopes that it would continue to entertain my active toddler. Luckily, the pig in the red dress has continued to captivate my child.

I soon learned that her name is Olivia and she is a six year old pig who loves red. When asked if she wants to be a football player she says no she wants to be the coach so she can be in charge; she then says she wants to own the football team so she can be in charge of the coach. This kind of “take charge” attitude is something you don’t always see in books and programs directed towards young girls. My husband and I recognized this and because of Olivia’s attitude we have encouraged our daughter’s obsession with her. We even let her watch the Olivia television show which she LOVES.

Now 10 months after we first met this pig my daughter has had an Olivia themed birthday, owns every book, and dances whenever she hears the Olivia theme song. My husband and I know every episode by heart and, to be honest, are getting a little sick of Olivia. But even on days when I can’t get the Olivia theme song out of my head I am still truly thankful for her. She is one of the few girl cartoon characters that bucks trends and doesn’t have an over sexualized body. Olivia doesn’t have much of a waist and she doesn’t have breasts because she is six. She looks her age and her body is realistic.

In a world full of Barbies and Disney Princesses I am proud of my daughter’s fondness for this little piglet. I hope she continues to enjoy her television programs and if she grows out of them finds a new role model with just as much character and with a body that is age appropriate and realistic. Well, it’s realistic if you don’t count the pig hooves, snout, and ears.

And that’s been this week’s Shannonigans!

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