"Look at those poor suckers!"

"Look at those poor suckers!"

That's what I thought taking a short cut through the American Girl store at the Mall of America in Minneapolis. 

I was coming from the bar on the third floor to the amusement park rides on the bottom floor and decided a quicker way down would be by escalator through the American Girl store. While I was going down the escalator I saw something that made me laugh -- a dad sitting at a tiny table sharing a fake cup of tea with his daughter... and her American Girl Doll. 

It wasn't one dad, though. It was an entire store of dads. 

At the time I had two boys. My brother in law, Jim, who was with me, also has two boys. To us, those dads looked like they wanted to be ANYWHERE else in the world than sipping empty cups at the Mall of America. 

And then, a short time later...as life would have it... my wife announced she was pregnant. And yes, as life would have it, we had a daughter. It was then and there I realized I was about to become one of those dads. 

It took a few years, 3 to be exact, for Kathryn to get her first American Girl Doll, and it took that long for me to get it. Watching her take care of that doll, or any doll (even a $4 doll from Target), is a pure joy to watch. She talks to that doll, encourages that doll ("Oh you're getting so big"), dances with that doll, dresses the doll, and as you can see, sleeps with her 'best friend.'

Raising two boys has been amazing, but raising a girl is one of the most unique and incredible experiences of my life. So, yes, I will become one of those "suckers," and take my girl to have fake tea one day at the American Girl store... and I can't wait.  

Dave Kent

Dave Kent

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