Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Long Time No Write: Christmas, and Star Wars the Force Awakens. Don't Worry,No Spoilers!

  Whoa! I didn't even realize how long it had been since I last posted until I looked at my last post: December 2nd! The last thing I posted was my Christmas list! I was really busy this season. Once again I didn't get a chance to do the Christmas photostories I had planned last year! I didn't even get to post the Christmas pictures I took for a quick 'Happy Holidays' post. What I did do was overhaul a couple of rooms. Took me three days to clean up Fuzzys old room. He left a huge mess behind when he moved out in September. Eventually I want to use that room as my supply room for all the stuff I use to make things. Most people call that a 'craft room' but as my family knows, I balk at calling what I do 'crafting', being a bit big headed about it and preferring to call it 'art'!
  I had a wonderful Christmas. All of our kids were here, which is most of what I ask of a holiday. Although Emma just lives down the street, she works so much that we don't get to see her as much as we would like. It was nice to have her here for the day. We haven't seen much of Fuzzy at all since he moved out. He spent most of the day with us, along with his girlfriend Shanna. It was nice to spend a little more time with Shanna and get to know her a little better. I hope she felt like part of the family. Ivy is our last child at home. I don't look forward to the day she moves out too. My favourite part of the day, other than the fact that Fuzz wasn't here, was the 2 or 3 hours the rest of us spent crammed on to the couch, watching Star Wars Revenge of the Sith, just being together.)
  I got quite a few things I was wanting for Christmas, but, as Ken said, it was a 'doll-light Christmas'. In other words, it was light on dolls. Ken bought me the Bunny Blanc Ever After High I wanted, and Emma bought me the Irish Madame Alexander Travel Friends doll. (She wasn't on my list, but I did want her.I mentioned that back when I reviewed the India Travel friends Doll.) Ivy also gave me a beautiful miniature china tea set.
  As for Star Wars, Ivy and I rewatched all 6 of the earlier movies in preparation for seeing the new one, The Force Awakens. I managed to not hear anything about it before we saw it, the day after Christmas. Although the big reveals weren't that big a surprise this time, (Not like The Empire Strikes Back,when, just days before I was finally going to see it, 3 year old Unsentimental Niece unceremoniously announced "Darth Vader is Luke's dad." "Whaatt?! Nooooooooo!!"), it was nice to at least have the chance to guess first. For the record, I thought The Force Awakens was pretty good,was true to the old characters, and had that wonderful sense of humour the originals had, without giving up the drama. It was nice to see female pilots and generals, and even the female lead character. It was a bit weird to watch this new movie, with the original cast, and think that I went to see the original Star Wars when I was 15! I was younger than Ivy, my youngest child, and here I am at almost 54, watching the latest Star Wars movie, and they still have the same people playing the parts I saw them playing back in 1977! How many movie franchises have had such a long and continuous history, especially with the same cast?! It's even stranger than seeing a new Harry Potter movie in 2039, still cast with Daniel Radcliff,Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and even Robbie Coltrane and Alan Rickman.(It's hard to find a comparison to Anthony Daniels as C3PO and Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca. Maybe if Scabbers the rat and Crookshanks the cat had been played by actors in costume?) The main Harry Potter cast was a lot younger than the Star Wars cast when their movies started.
  Anyway, I will be back more often now that the holidays are over. I have some posts already planned.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

My Christmas List for 2015

  It's time for my yearly Christmas list. It may seem a little early, but this is for my husband Ken's benefit, (and so, ultimately, mine...), so that he has time to...ponder. 
   Some of the things on last years list found their way to my house for my birthday, if not for Christmas, so they're not on this year's list. Some of the things were on last year's list. Keep in mind I obviously won't get everything on my list. So what do I want this year?

The Beatles 1 CD/DVD.
   Whoo hoo! Lost Beatles videos!Of course some are the same ones that have been floating around in bootleg form for the last umpteen million years, and more recently have been found on Youtube. But even the familiar ones have been remastered and supposedly look so much better now.

This one is the special edition version, which has TWICE the number of videos! This one has TWO discs of 27 videos each, including a bunch a rare stuff, and also comes with a big book. I want this version...

...instead of this version.
Next,the DVD "Monty Python Live (Mostly) One Down Five to Go"...comes in BluRay.

A film of the live shows that I did NOT get to go see last year. You know, shortly before the Kate Bush concerts I ALSO did not get to see...

Ken, it can be obtained for 12.22 with free shipping.
  The Danny Kaye show has been getting released in dribs and drabs over the last few years. Apparently they're up to a third DVD now. The latest one being...
Danny Kaye Legends
One of the other two was this one.
I can't find the other one at all unless it was the Christmas one.

  One of my all time favourite series is Frasier.

Ken keeps saying I don't need the DVDs because it's on Netflix, but it won't always be there! Besides, it was recently re-released and it's cheaper than ever.

Another DVD I want, and don't judge me, is Hey Arnold! the Complete series.

 Yes, I watch kid's shows and I love Hey Arnold. I am Helga. Apparently the complete series on DVD is a Walmart exclusive, so you have to buy it there Ken.
 Ok, I watch kid's shows, but I also read. Here are some books I want:
 The book "Red, A History of the Red Head" by Jacky Colliss Harvey
My people.

   I read Johannes Cabal Detective by Jonathan L. Howard after finding it at Dollar Tree. It was good: clever and funny. I keep hoping they'll have more of them,because I'm cheap, but so far no good. I'd like to have the other Johannes Cabal books, especially the first one, since I started on number two or three.
  Here are the others.

I think this one is a short story.

  That Charles Dickens biography at Ollies.If you read my vacation post you'll know I love Charles Dickens.

I don't know if it's this one, but it's big and blue.
And yeah, ok, I also read kid's books, and I still don't have that last Doll People book:
"The Doll People Set Sail" by Ann M. Martin and Laura Godwin.
Say what you want, but I started reading this series of books with Ivy when she was little and we loved them. I want to know what happens.
  And now what readers of this blog will be more interested in, my doll choices for the year. They come in two catagories:
First  is Possible Doll Wishes.
  Recently when we were out for Ivy's birthday celebration we came across a booth in the mall that sold little figures with 3-D printed heads of the customer. The smallish ones were affordable, and I have always wanted dolls of my family since I saw some custom figures on line years ago. With 3-D printing such things are now affordable by puny average people like us. I told the kids I'd love to have had 3-D printed figures of them when they were tiny, to save the moment forever. It's too late for that, but I can hold them as they are now. I'd love one of each kid, plus Ken too. You can't leave anybody out. That wouldn't be the family, and that wouldn't be right. Each one of the kids could get me a figure of themselves, and Ken could get me one of him. Although I know getting Fuzz to do anything is too much to ask, as well as expecting him to spend any money on us. Last year he insisted he wanted to get me a new comforter for the bed. Instead he spent about $1.49 on me. Oh well.  
 Next is a doll I saw in England but have been having a hard time finding over here. She's Ever After High Bunny Blanc...this one
She's almost the only Ever After High doll based on Alice in Wonderland characters that I really love, which is  shame because there are a lot of them, (The whole Way Too Wonderland line.), and I love Alice in Wonderland. For the record, the other one I like, but nowhere near as much as this one, is Lizzie Hearts.

The other Ever After High doll I really love is  Duchess Swan...this one
I think she's just about the most beautiful doll the line has ever done. She's an older one, so she won't be easy to find. I've only seen her in a store once probably. That was Meijer, but it was ages ago.

 If Ken can't find her, which he can't, I also love this doll:

She's McKeyla a Project MC2 doll. These dolls have lovely faces and beautiful inset eyes. There are two McKeyla dolls in this line. I want this one, because she's articulated.
  There are also dolls I like that I'd happily take, like the Tinkerbell friends Rosetta or Zarina,which, Ken, they have at TJ Maxx.

Now for the dolls there is no chance of me getting because they are out-of-the-question-expensive. I call these the Purely Fantasy Wish Dolls:
First of these is Creamsicle Lark by Helen Kish 

Of all the Lark doll by Helen Kish, I think she's my favourite.It's hard to say though. I wouldn't turn down  My First Heels Lark
I think she's the only side glancing one.
or Lark of the High Seas
Lark of the High Seas is more recent than the other two, but that isn't going to make her any cheaper. They also made blonde Larks, but I like the red heads.
Of course, from last year's list there's still Savannah from Maru and Friends dolls.

I think she's my favourite. Actually, I think my real favourite would be if you put Savannah's hair on Jamie...

This is Jamie. They have pretty much the same face, but Jamie has green eyes, instead of blue.

I'd even take Maru herself if I really had to.

I love them all,but red haired Savannah would be my first choice...I think...
And of course I still want a Hamish doll, friend of Amelia Thimble by Wilde Imagination. But none of these are still sold on the site.
This Hamish was a limited edition of 300, so he's expensive.

Cute little freckles and...teeth!
 Little Gardener Hamish was a limited edition of 125, so you can imagine he's even harder to get.
I wouldn't turn down Hamish as Peter Pan, but I don't like the cupid Hamish or Trick or Treat/dead looking Hamish.
And then there's Garden Patience from Wilde Imagination.

She's not sold any more either.

And as I also said last year,Ashton Drake's Dianna Effner dolls Little Red Riding Hood, or Mary Mary Quite Contrary. (The jointed vinyl ones, not the porcelain ones.)
Here's Mary.

And here's Red.

There's also Ashton Drake's Dianna Effner doll Sunshine and Lollipops.
This vinyl one, and not the porcelain one wearing a flowered dress.

  Since I'll never afford a Dianna Effner Little Darlings doll, even more than I can't afford the similar looking Heartstrings Simply Rusty, I'll take Rusty.(If you've ever read The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy that will make more sense to you. "They hung in the air in exactly the same way that bricks don't.")
Here's Simply Rusty.The 'Simply' dolls are undressed, in only their little undies. I want the Simply Rusty  because he's cheaper that way. I hear he can wear some Bratz Boyz shirts, which I have. As for pants, that will take some searching.As far as I know Heartstrings dolls are available exclusively from Jo's Doll Shoppe, from which I borrowed this picture.

  So that's my list for this year. I'm sure I'll keep thinking of things, but I don't expect to get most of the stuff on the top half of the list, or any on the bottom half. I'm just giving Ken choices.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Top Ten Reasons You Have a Blog...

...Because nobody at home cares that you found that really cool 1/6 scale Shogun helmet at the junk store...

Apparently these were given away when you flew Japan Airlines.
It came in this little plastic base, but was made to be removable.

It HAD to load sideways! This is a reproduction of a helmet that belonged to Ieyasu Tokugowa. He was a pretty famous guy. He even has his own Wikipedia page which you can see HERE, although everybody else, including Wikipedia, seems to call him Tokugowa Ieyasu.

...not even when you tell them it actually fits on a doll...

That orange thing is supposed to go under his chin, but there was no way that was happening.

...or when you tell them you only paid $2 for the whole bunch of stuff...

... that also included a complete set of 'Tiny Tray' coasters that will make great 1/6 scale trays,a tiny version of the gauze angels you've been buying,and other stuff that matches stuff you already have.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

More Cool Thrift Store Finds: Miss Ginger and Mattel Modern Furniture

  Happy Halloween!

  It's that time of year again. I'm once more locked in that struggle with the yard waste guys. I have been really good about getting my leaves raked this year. Since my shoulder has been so bad I knew I could never rake them all at once, so I have been raking them a little at a time. That means I have only spent about half an hour every Tuesday while I'm here alone because Ken's at work and Ivy's at play practice and stage crew, instead of a whole day spent breaking my back, (and my shoulder). So of course, I fill three cans with leaves and the branches Ken and I cut this week, and the yard waste guys don't come.I think they only come when they feel like it. I can't have my trash can tied up all winter, plus I still have two more piles of leaves in my yard. (I didn't dare load up all my leaves and fill all my trash cans, because the chance of the yard waste guys not coming was too great.) I didn't want to put all my leaves in the tree line, like they actually tell you you can do, because there have been too many years they never came and sucked them up. Then all my grass there dies, and the rotted leaves make the ground all lumpy and hard to mow with my little non-motorized mower.

  I am still pretty proud of the two Fall/Halloween photo stories I did a couple of years ago, so if you haven't seen them yet you can check them out
"The  World Family at the Pumpkin Patch"

and HERE
"The Halloween Party"

  I found some cool things at Salvation Army the other day. First was this Miss Ginger doll.

Miss Ginger was made by Cosmopolitan. There were other incarnations of Ginger,including a childlike doll that competed with Vogue's Ginny, a taller version of my doll that competed with Miss Revlon,and an 8" version called Little Miss Ginger, similar to Little Miss Nancy Ann. This version is 10 1/2" tall and premiered in 1957.  She's in pretty nice condition.She could do with restringing because she's a little loose, but at least she's still together.I'm not sure exactly what to do with her hair.Is it supposed to be one of those bun things?

Anybody know? I know there were Miss Ginger's with ponytails. But this isn't supposed to be a ponytail, is it? One thing's for sure: it's not meant to be worn down!
That's not a case of empty plugs. It's rooted that way. By the way, she's marked 'Ginger' on the back of her head, just below her hair.
Her dress is too big for her. I'm not sure if it's homemade.I love the belt. It's sewn on in the front, which is why it didn't get lost.I think these are her original shoes though.When I bought her she was only wearing one shoe. I'll tell you where the other shoe came from in a minute.

I also got a bag containing this Mattel Modern Furniture!
There is supposed to be a cushion in the chair.

This other unidentified piece was in the bag too.

The Mattel Modern Furniture is really hard to find and really expensive.

It was actually made a year before Barbie, in 1958.

It's hard to see, but that's a Mattel logo.
The boxes it originally came in said it was for dolls 10" to 10 1/2" tall, like Miss Ginger and Little Miss Revlon.

Miss Ginger and the Little Miss Revlon I found at Goodwill recently.

And it is perfectly sized for them. People still use it for Barbie though, and it works well for her too. It's popular with collectors, especially now that Mid Century design is having a resurgence.

The other Modern Furniture included a couple of different styles of couch, lamps, a stereo cabinet/credenza, dining table and chairs,a bedroom set with bed, clothes rack,and dresser with mirror.

And where did I get the other shoe for Miss Ginger? It was in the middle drawer of this piece of furniture!

 Along with the little plastic guy, who was obviously originally driving something.

His steering wheel was in the drawer too. Must have been some accident.

  So this must have been Miss Ginger's furniture. I went back yesterday to see if any more of the furniture had shown up. If it had it had sold the day before,when I didn't go back. I'm wondering if the Little Miss Revlon and Barbie and Midge I found at Goodwill the last couple of weeks are another case of someone donating half their stuff to Goodwill and half to Salvation Army. That has very obviously happened before. (Like with the zillion Crissy dolls both had at the same time.)
52 in this Goodwill batch. Salvation Army had 42.
You can read the posts about that HERE and HERE.

  I hope everybody has a safe and fun Halloween.This is the first year I have been in the position of handing out candy on Halloween, with no kids Trick or Treating, and I totally didn't think about it until the Trick or Treaters went by! Now I feel guilty! Next year I'll be ready. It's hard getting out of the idea, 'I won't be home on Halloween. I'll be out taking the kids Trick or Treating.' Sniff!