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/ Source: TODAY
By Donna Freydkin

Savannah Guthrie's daughter, Vale, has the most epic Halloween costume in the works. Or perhaps a better description is "multifaceted."

"When you have kids who are 3, they change their minds all the time," said the TODAY co-anchor. "She wants to be a princess and she wants to be a doctor and she wants to be a ghost. So I told her she can be a ghost princess doctor. I'll combine all those things. In a way, that's the message of the book. You don't have to be pigeonholed."

The book in question is "Princesses Wear Pants," a best-seller Guthrie co-wrote co-with Allison Oppenheim. It's a fun read aimed at teaching girls (and boys) that while your exterior matters, it's truly what's on the inside that counts. No, the book is not a "women's studies seminar," said Guthrie, but has its own strong message for all genders.

"This book is for girls and boys. Boys seeing girls in positions of leadership and substance is really important," said Guthrie. "In parenting it's never about what you say. It's about what you do."

And even if your kids seem oblivious, they're not. They model the behavior they're witnessing.

"They're learning all day, every day, from their surroundings," agreed Oppenheim. "They're seeing strong women doing important things."

So the key to raising boys who appreciate and respect girls, say Guthrie and Oppenheim, is to practice what you preach. And yes, it will sink in.