I’m pretty sure third grade is when Barbie dolls were all the rage. I may have even had one stuck in the middle of my cake at my roller skating rink birthday party. Most of my gifts were dolls and rarely did any of them look like me. Did I care? Nope.

I played with the dolls until their limbs fell off, and sometimes even long after. I brushed their hair and styled them in the bathtub. I didn’t realize it at the time but a lot of those toys, along with the people I was surrounded by at school, influenced the way I saw myself.

My curly hair seemed unruly and messy compared to the slick shiny hair of my dolls. My eyes seemed so dark and boring. The “pretty dolls” I was gifted looked nothing like me. Therefore, was I not pretty?

While I didn’t take it to that literal equation (though self-conscious, I was always a pretty confident child) I altered the way I looked to match beauty standards. I straightened my hair, and even wore contacts–not to see better, but to change the color of my eyes.

As an adult, connecting all the dots, and becoming a mother to a little girl, I knew right off the bat we were going to do things differently. She’d see herself represented in books, movies and toys in ways I never did. I’ve made this a priority.

Apple Park Organic Toys Review

I applaud companies that also recognize the need for more diverse toys. Apple Park has long been a brand promising products that are safe for children, better for the environment and always beautifully green. But beyond creating soft baby clothes, and toys made from organic materials, they’re also aware of the importance of creating more toys that represent a wider rainbow of children.

Their newest Best Friend’s doll named Mia has a dark skin tone, braidable pigtails and to my daughter’s delight–a removable dress.

Apple Park Organic Toys New Mia Doll Review

Apple Park sent us one of their new dolls and Lil’ J was so excited to open hers, and a matching one she insists is for her baby sister. I explained how this was a new doll, and their first that looked like her, to which she interpreted to mean it’s a special doll made in her image. I haven’t had the heart to tell her otherwise yet. But I do love watching her embrace dolls, toys and characters who look more like her than most toys I played with as a little girl.

In the 1940s, a study looking into the effects of segregation by psychologists Kenneth and Mamie Clark found that black children not only overwhelmingly preferred white dolls, but they also had negative perceptions of black dolls. I saw these dolls in the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, TN. It broke my heart reading how children didn’t want to play with the dolls with darker skin. The “doll test” was cited in the 1954 Supreme Court caseBrown vs. Board of Education, which led to desegregation.

Apple Park Organic Toys New Mia Doll Review

It’s important for every child to see themselves in a positive light, and to see the beauty in diversity in the world. That begins with the toys they play with and the books that they read. I’ve seen the difference it’s made in my daughter’s life and it gives me hope that we’ve come a long way and that things will continue to get better.

Our little girl on the way also has a super soft and snuggly first baby doll ready for her and I hope it’s a gift she cherishes a long time.

Apple Park Organic Toys New Mia Doll Review


What a week you guys. Not one, but two giveaways for you! First off, Apple Park has a slew of adorable baby and children’s toys and items from books and blankets to dolls and backpacks. Use my code JB20 to get 20% off your Apple Park purchase from May 22nd until May 31st.

Now for the giveaway. One reader will win an Apple Park Prize pack filled with the sweetest goodies. This prize pack has a retail value of $150 and will include these items or items of a similar value:

To enter just leave a comment with a link to an item you love on their website. Giveaway closes next Thursday night May 31st at 11:59pm.

Big thanks to Apple Park for being today’s blog sponsor.

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How about a good old fashioned journal entry today. It’s been a minute right? I’ve been trying to share more of my useful thoughts lately but sometimes you just need to brain dump. And I think there’s something to be said about recording an experience when you’re right in the middle of it, unknowing how… read the rest.

The women who inspire me on a daily basis, help me when I’m in a bind, respond to my texts at the wee hours, and let me drop in for a playdate or weekend getaway… These women are my Mom Tribe. It’s so easy to name them, but it’s not easy to get them all… read the rest.

Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget

I'm a part-time journalist, full-time wife and mother striving to make the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day.

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Inspiring Moments Positive Parenting Spreading Joy
Apple Park Organic Toys New Mia Doll Review
Why I Want My Kids to Have Toys that Look Like Them
All the Things I Meant to Say When I Won Blog of the Year
Our Family is Rollin Up On a New Adventure!
Family Travel Food & Culture Homeschooling
My Top 10 Favorite Vacation Photos Plus Tips to Capture Your Own
When you Hate the Kitchen and Have a Daughter Who Loves to Cook
Disney World for preschoolers #DisneyKids
Tips for Doing Disney on a Budget
Creating With Kids (DIY) Disney Motherhood Pregnancy & Baby
Newborn shopping list. Getting ready for baby. Munchkin must-haves.
Preparing for a Baby When Everything Has Changed
This is What Happens When You’re Pregnant for the Third Time
They Say it Takes a Village: Where Would I Be Without My Tribe?
Interracial Marriage Multiracial Parenting Our Family History Photography & Videos
Apple Park Organic Toys New Mia Doll Review
Why I Want My Kids to Have Toys that Look Like Them
Birthday letter to my 5-year-old-son
An Open Letter to My Now 5-Year-Old Son
interracial family photo
This is How Far I’m Willing to Go to Get the Perfect Family Photo