Sneakers to Stilettos? But she's in 2nd grade!

It happened two years ago. Sierra crossed the aisle.

I was digging out a few more boxes in the shoe store when I heard her say "These are too tight! My toes hurt."

"No way."

They were size four ballet flats. Already up from the threes we bought two months earlier. This meant that we were about to leave the land of mary janes and shoes with cartoon characters and enter - - the stiletto zone.

Most people don't worry about these things, but I have a daughter with an unhealthy interest in shoes with a certain glam factor. Shoes with glitter and rhinestones. Shoes that scream Liberace and Elvis meet Imelda Marcos.

It's something she inherited from her father. Not that he likes his shoes with glitter. He just has no sense that these are not options for 2nd graders. I had sent them off to the mall with these instructions:

"Sierra needs shoes good for running around."

She came back with gold lamé wedge heel mules. With sequins.

Perhaps I needed to provide a better definition of "running around." Perhaps I needed to point out these were supposed to be for running around with her classmates, not one of the Village People.

Needless to say, Daddy is now banned from shoe shopping.

So crossing the aisle in the shoe department is crossing into dangerous territory with my girl. She headed for the red pumps like a woman with a charge card. I quickly steered her to the triple-priced size five shoes suitable for swings and slides, which, thank goodness, are still the main form of outdoor entertainment for her.

Something has happened this year. Someone has hit the accelerator and both my kids have gone from a nice, steady development course to a rocket ship out of clothes that end with the letter T for toddler and are hurtling head first into T for Teen.

Of course it doesn't help that all the clothes for girls in this size range do tend to be better suited to gold lamé wedge heeled mules with sequins than mary janes. By third grade, apparently, I'm supposed to dress my daughters like extras on a Disney music video. (Yes, even Disney has gone bare belly on us.)

With any luck I'll be able to keep Sierra in tennies and cowboy boots a few more years. But they'll have to have sequins.