Posts Tagged ‘american girl’

This post is very late coming; I was so busy with the Scotland website (which didn’t even seem to make it into the contest–I’m not sure what went wrong with my entry).  But here we go!

On Labor Day weekend, I went to Washington, DC.  I had a long weekend and I googled about good places to visit, and Washington was on the list.  And I got a really good rate on a hotel, and we had a blast.  I brought Melody because she was so shiny and new, and I knew I was going to buy her clothes during my visit!

Our journey began with a rainy ferry ride


And a bus to the airport


Here’s a photo of my favorite bathroom stall at the airport.  The bag hook smiles at you!


We flew Alaska Airlines and I earned a lot of frequent flyer miles flying from Washington to Washington!


We landed in Washington (actually it was the Ronald Reagan airport which is in Arlington, Virginia) at nighttime and took the subway to our hotel.




Our first morning started off early with some Krispy Kreme.


We were headed to the zoo!




We arrived when it first opened (8am?) to beat the crowds and maximize our tourist time for the rest of the day.



And I’m pretty sure a zoo that does not charge admission would get pretty crowded on a Saturday during a holiday weekend. There’s no way I would have gotten so close to the pandas if I had gone later in the day.




I really do love pandas!



After the zoo, Melody went back to the hotel. I wanted to get in as many museums as possible, and I didn’t wanna waste a minute with bag check. I went to the Museum of the American Indian (and ate a yummy Navajo taco for lunch), the National Gallery, and the Museum of American History. I’m not a huge fan of taking photos in museums, but I couldn’t resist this celebrity sighting:

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And then I picked Melody back up and we went to a fancy steak dinner…


…before our evening at the theatre!


We saw Come From Away at Ford’s Theatre!


Come From Away is a musical about Newfoundland. I saw it in Seattle last December, and now it’s coming to Broadway! Love it!

I got an early start the next morning too. Today was all about cute photo ops.

White House:


Washington Monument:





WWII memorial:





Lincoln Memorial:







Korean War Veterans’ Memorial




Martin Luther King, Jr Memorial (Melody’s favorite):




FDR memorial, which I found oddly crowded. Turns out it was a Poke-stop or something and that weekend was at the peak of Pokémon-go Mania!







Jefferson Memorial:



Anyone who has explored Washington knows that we covered a lot of ground, and all before lunch! Next I put Melody away for a while and went to the Holocaust museum. Very thought-provoking. I do have one dolly photo from the museum:

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It’s from the section of the museum called “Daniel’s story” and it’s targeted to young people. Daniel’s diary in the photo says “My mother says to hurry with our suitcases. We are being sent to a ghetto far away. I wonder what a ghetto is? My father says thousands of Jews are being sent away. Erika is crying.”

After the museum, we got on the subway and went all the way to…


…American Girl at Tyson’s Corner! Melody tried out Maryellen’s sofa bed and the then-brand-new camper. I bought all the new Beforever outfits, including the rest of Melody’s wardrobe.


And we met friends! Friends that I’ve met online. Other adult dolly fans. We shopped until the store closed, then got dinner.


Melody was excited to put on her pajamas before bed that night:


And we flew home early the next morning!

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We took some time in Seattle to eat lunch with my sister before heading to the airfield. We took a little airplane back to the island!



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And that was the end of our little adventure. Long live long weekends!

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Did you know that I also have a Lego addiction?  Yup, so when I heard about American Girl Mega Bloks, I had to jump on them.  I found 4 sets on toysrus.com, and bought Saige’s Art Studio, Isabelle’s Studio, Grace’s 2-in-1 house, and Nicki’s Horse Stable.  Here’s the box for Saige’s set:


I was super excited to get to play with Girls of the Year who have been retired. Even their original outfits!

The box opened over the face. I dumped the pieces inside while I built.


And here’s a photo of the instruction book. It’s bound instead of stapled, and it has some pieces from the character’s story and ideas for play.


So far I’ve built 3 of my 4 sets, and I’m pretty pleased. I still like Lego better, but the sets exceeded my expectations, until I think about how they cost as much as Lego sets of similar size. But if I put a price on using the American Girl brand it evens out. I’m ready for more sets. I think Kanani’s would be pretty awesome.

And look how cute these sets look in my current Lego town:


Clockwise from the top, that’s Anna and Elsa’s Arandelle castle, Saige’s Art Studio, Grace’s Patisserie, Grace’s room, the Big Bang Theory living room, Isabelle’s Studio, and Sheriff Woody’s office. In the center is a Lego Friends market and Jungle treehouse, with Grace ziplining across the street to her room.

I think I’m gonna go build the 4th set! Bye!

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I did it again! I tried Maplelea clothes on American Girl dolls. This time I took the clothes from Saila’s collection.

The first photo is of 3 outfits that fit perfectly, with no surprise. They are Saila’s swimsuit, Saila’s pajamas, and a knit dress called Katajjaq Giggles.

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Next up is a photo of 3 outfits that had fit issues: Sweet Saxifrage, Tunic Time, and Ptarmigans Rock.

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The Sweet Saxifrage dress fits fine, but when Emily wears the shoes she has unsightly toe cleavage:

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Sonali looks pretty cute in the Saila’s tunic sweater, but she cannot get the leggings on over her feet. If you are interested in buying this outfit for your American Girl dolls, it wouldn’t be a big deal to cut a little snip at the ankle to be able to fit.

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And Mia was able to get the Ptarmigan pants on, but they didn’t quite stay closed at the waist and legs:

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And I’ve saved the best for last. These 3 outfits not only fit well, but they also look adorable. Here are Jess in Nunavut Now, Isabelle in Artfully Inspired, and Rebecca in the clothes that come on the Saila doll.

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I absolutely love Isabelle in this outfit. I imagine fashion designer Isabelle painting and blanket stitching this top herself, to commemorate a Canadian vacation. And, it looks cute with her pink extensions.

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I didn’t put Saila’s amauti on anyone today. I just wasn’t in the mood to mess up dolly hair with the amauti’s traditional over-the-head fit. I’m pretty sure it will fit, and I highly recommend the coat to all dolly owners. Did you know it is actually made in Nunavut?

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I have recently declared myself Maplelea’s biggest fan.  I have all 7 characters and a Maplelea Friend doll, and a whole bunch of outfits.  My American Girl dolls love having these Canadian friends, but for the most part, these 2 groups do not share clothes in my house.  They just don’t have a need to.  The American Girls have their clothes, and the Maplelea girls have their clothes.  The end.

But I realize that there are other people who want their doll clothes to fit their entire dolly family, so I thought it might be a nice time to have the American Girl dolls try on the Maplelea outfits, and share my results.  It will take me a while to get through all the outfits, but here’s a start.  Let’s start with the smallest Maplelea collection (so far), that of the newest Maplelea character Charlsea.


This first photo shows McKenna in the outfit Charlsea comes in (sadly not available without the purchase of a Charlsea doll), Chrissa in Charlsea’s Sea Otter Sleepwear, and Lea in the wetsuit from Charlsea’s West Coast Waterwear. These 3 outfits fit wonderfully, including Charlsea’s pink rainboots! The Maplelea feet are entirely different from American Girl feet, so most of the time when the shoes do fit, they still look silly. But the pink rainboots work really well. McKenna is not wearing Charlsea’s tights, because I didn’t want them to stretch out, but they will probably fit fine too because they’re stretchy.

Let’s put in a photo of Lea in Charlsea’s kayak, because that definitely fits dolls of many sizes.

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I didn’t have anyone try on Charlsea’s two-piece swimsuit that comes in the set with the wetsuit, but it’s stretchy, so will fit fine.

Let’s move on to the other 2 outfits not in that first photo: Charlsea’s snowsuit called Weekend at Whistler and Charlsea’s fun outfit called Gulf Island Stylin. Well, they’re not pictured because they don’t fit. Both outfits come with pants with a slim fit, and Maplelea legs are significantly thinner than AG legs. So both pairs of pants are a no-go on American Girl dolls.

Here’s McKenna trying to put on the Gulf Island Stylin pants:

and the snow pants from Weekend at Whistler:

She also tried on the jacket from Weekend at Whistler, and the sleeves didn’t quite fit:

but the jacket still looks pretty cute on McKenna:

And that’s all for the Charlsea outfits I had last week when I took these photos! This week I got Charlsea’s newest dress called Granville Island Groovy (and last weekend I went to Granville Island…if the outfit had arrived earlier Charlsea totally would have accompanied me, but it didn’t, so she didn’t!) Anyway, it’s a simple shift dress made with a stretch knit, so it will fit a wide variety of dolls. The outfit’s flip flops are another story. I’ll get you a photo of this dress eventually, probably the next time I go to Granville Island!


I think I’ll close with photos of Charlsea’s outfits on Maplelea dolls, because what’s a post about Maplelea without some Maplelea faces?

Taryn in Gulf Island Stylin:

and Charlsea’s swimsuit:

and Charlsea’s pajamas:
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Portia in Weekend at Whistler:
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and Charlsea wearing her wetsuit backwards:
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Cute Diner Photo

The Seaside Diner has found a potentially permanent home in my bedroom under the window!  The light from the window shines through the top of the diner and makes it look like a real neon sign.  I love it!

Just a quick post to brighten your day.  Have a good one!

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Last weekend I went to the Big Island of Hawai’i.  It was my first time to the Big Island.  It was my first weekend trip to Hawaii.  And it was totally awesome.  I wish I could go to Hawaii every weekend.

Kailey joined me for the adventure.  We scored 1st class upgrades!  I say “we” because on the first flight, they couldn’t find anyone to sit next to me, so Kailey got her own first class seat!  I imagine that is extremely rare for dollies.

On these short trips, I make it a requirement to get to the destination as early as possible.  In this case, it meant a layover in Oakland.

I got to sit in first class for the next, longer, flight, but Kailey had to sit on my lap.  We could see the cockpit!

I learned that they lock the pilot and officer in the cockpit when in flight, and when one of them wants to get out to stretch their legs or use the facilities, one of the flight attendants acts as bodyguard and passengers are not allowed to pass.  I doubt a 92-pound flight attendant is much of a match for a terrorist, but I suppose if she can lift 50 pounds over her head like it says in her job requirements…

Also from this seat I was required to listen to flight attendant gossip.  I don’t wanna stereotype all flight attendants, but this particular one was not the sharpest crayon in the box.  I am now considering investing in noise-cancelling headphones.

The flying is the unpleasant part of a weekend in paradise, but even that isn’t so bad.  We arrived safely and on time, and were soon at our hotel, the Royal Kona Resort.  It used to be a Hilton or some other big name property, and you could tell that it used to be quite fine.  Now it’s really showing it’s age, but for the price I paid it was amazing.  Here’s the view from part of our balcony:

I say “part of our balcony” because I scored a gigantic corner room with a king-size bed.  I booked a volcano-view room, which is the cheapest room choice available, but I got a balcony that wrapped around the corner of the building.  One side had a volcano view (which for most of the trip was a fog view), and the other side had a partial ocean view!  The above photo is looking straight ahead, at the neighboring hotel, and our hotel’s swimming lagoon.  Turn your head to the left and lean out a teeny bit and you could see the entire ocean!

As hard as it was to get off the beach chair on the balcony, we headed out for a late lunch, stopping for a photo at the koi pond.

After lunch, as I was deciding what to explore next, I fell asleep.  Work the day before was really awful, so I kinda needed it.  But I woke up in time to watch the sunset by the lagoon.

There aren’t a lot of sandy beaches on the Big Island, so it was nice that our hotel had a private lagoon.  The water was sheltered from the surf, nice and calm.  It was super hard to walk along the bottom, but I doggie paddled my way along to a rock on which to sit and watch the sunset (Kailey watched from a nice dry lounge chair).

I considered eating dinner after sunset, but went to sleep instead.

The next morning we embarked on a guided tour to Volcano National Park.  It’s about a 3 hour drive from Kona (can you say boring?), but we made several stops along the way, and the guide told stories, so it wasn’t boring at all.  Our first stop was lunch at a coffee farm.  As a Mormon I have zero interest in coffee, and lunch was super boring, but the farm had a lovely view.

Next stop was a black sand beach.  It was pretty awesome.

We eventually made it to the volcano.  We took a short hike through the forest and through a lava tube (which is a fancy name for a cave) and then got dinner.

After dinner it was dark out, so we went to watch the volcano glow in the dark.  It was really hard to photograph, and not quite as spectacular as I imagined.

And that was it.  The next morning I had to head to the airport.  And I had to leave much earlier than I would have liked because the shuttle company made me.  I had to wait at the airport for 3 hours before my flight.  Which was totally lame because the airport was super small.  No good food.  No good shopping.  But a cute sculpture:

I was totally bummed that I missed out on 1.5-2 hours of beach time (or perhaps lunch time) and spent it instead at an airport.  But as one of my facebook friends says about Hawaii, “two days are better than zero days”!

And here’s one final photo.  Bon voyage!

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The time has come for the last day of me and Maryellen in Disney World.  I’d be sad if I didn’t just book my next trip!

Here are the links for all the Disney World posts:

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

And now I’ll give the blog back to Maryellen, who will take you through our last 2 days of Disney World.  And oh boy, Day 6 was pretty fun!

Hi everyone!  It’s Maryellen again!  Our last full day at Disney World was pretty awesome.  Do you know why?

Because it’s Halloween Party day!  Yup, on Thursday, Oct 1, Marjorie and I went to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.  Final verdict: it was pretty fun, but kind of crowded, and kind of expensive.

The party didn’t start ’til evening time, so we took some more Magic Kingdom time in the morning.  We ate lunch at the Polynesian Village (way too many vegetables in the stir fry!), and took an afternoon break at our last hotel, Pop Century.

Marjorie has stayed at Pop Century lots of times.  It’s a “Value Resort”.  She thought I would like it, and these photos show why!

We couldn’t score a room in the 50s section, but the 70s section was closer to the bus stop anyway.  Here are the simple decorations in our 70s room:

After Marjorie put her costume on, we got a lot of “Of course you chose Pop Century!”

Some special characters appear for Mickey’s Halloween Party.  The Winnie the Pooh friends put on Halloween costumes!

And we got our photo with Lotso Huggin’ Bear from Toy Story 3.  He smelled like strawberries and was kind of sticky.

The Monsters, Inc Dance Party was pretty awesome:

They had trick or treat stations all around the park.  It was cool to get free candy, but we definitely got way less than the other kids.  I guess we weren’t cute enough!  Here’s a picture of me carrying our trick or treat bag:

And at the end of the night we watched the special firework show and the stage show with the witches from Hocus Pocus and the parade.

By the time we got a bus, we didn’t get back to Pop Century until long after midnight!

The next day we had just a few hours before we had to head to the airport.  We rode a few Epcot rides again, then we ate at the restaurant in Epcot’s giant aquarium called Coral Reef.

It was fun to eat next to the huge aquarium.  I think we were lucky to get front row seats.  But the food was average; you’re definitely paying to eat with a view!

After lunch it was back to the hotel to grab luggage and catch the bus to the airport.  Here’s a photo of me at the Orlando airport…

…and watching the sunset at the Detroit airport

We didn’t get all the way home until 1:15 am.  I was fine and slept a lot on the flight home, but poor Marjorie had to go to work the next day.  She was so tired!

Disney World is exhausting, even for someone who’s 18 inches tall.  If any of my dolly friends are thinking of going to Disney World, I want them to know it’s hard work.  I was lucky to go with someone like Marjorie who could make me one of her top priorities.  There’s a lot of heat, humidity, and walking involved in a trip to Disney World, and a lot of humans will complain, especially if they have to carry 18 inches of vinyl around.  But Marjorie didn’t complain, and I loved going back to Florida, and playing around all the Disney theming.  In summary, I only recommend going to Disney World if you’re going with someone who’s very attentive and dedicated, and if you don’t mind your hair getting mussed.  It’s a hard trip for a doll, but I think you’ll agree we got some cute photos!

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