Saturday, July 19, 2014

The thrill is in the opening

I have the blog Livings a Doll's Life saved in my favourites, and if it was a phone number I reckon I would have it on speed dial. Rhonda just loves her American Girl Dolls and really appreciates the collections of the characters she has.  I have a confession of almost living vicariously through her videos of the opening of her purchases.
Recently to support my Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh I got to experience it first hand.


aren't they gorgeous? Julies Roller skates

her skating outfit

and swimsuit.
I was so lucky to find an Ebay seller that had really looked after their things, they had even kept the boxes.
Llewellyn hasn't tried them on yet, its way too cold, but she can't wait till warmer weather.

I found another ebay seller, who I suspect actually made this mix and match set - skirt, pants, long sleeve shirt, vest and blouse.
I've been so lucky lately.
I think I'm going to need more wardrobe space

Crafting with Llewellyn

Llewellyn (aka Julie) arrived preloved, she did however come with amazing clothes, of which included part of her original meet outfit. One of the items missing is the braided/beaded belt

We ordered some leather straps and beads, and they arrived during the week, so whilst we were outside, Llewellyn, with Miriam's help made herself a belt.

part of the trick was keeping the tension right

whoa - standing up might not be the ideal solution

Albert the cat photo bombing.

While the girls did the belt it was my job to try and replicate the hat. I'm still not satisfied  with the tension on that, but so far Llewellyn  is happy enough.

Miriam by sunlight

Friday, July 18, 2014


I'd thought of these names even before they arrived, and I think they still suit them even after their arrival, so without much further ado, I am proud to introduce you to ...

Llewellyn July
(loo ellen. It's apparently a boys name, but I don't agree)

Miriam Cassandra

I'm still working on surnames and profiles and stuff, but a name is a good start I reckon. They were outside on the rug last Sunday enjoying some sunshine - Winter sunshine.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The eyes are the windows to the sole! - the shoes of July

I know these are glasses but they were selling them with Shoes close by - shoes by association?
Our Generation "Be Speckled" (hee hee I love some of the names they are giving the OG stuff)

3 pairs of reading glasses and a pair of sunnies, ooh and a glasses case.
The black rimmed ones have a little red bow on the left frame, reminding me of Hello Kitty.
A purrfect pair for Brooke-Lyn.
They are made of plastic but look so good. This pair has red arms.
I think I bought/received actual shoes in July, will have to think about it, mind you I have nearly a fortnight left to acquire.

The new face of Journey Girl

Waiting, waiting...
TRU Australia decided to have a sale to coincide with the school holidays, and of course it was to get rid of old stock,....
but the waiting was over and the malls emptied of school kiddies yippee, the sale ended Tuesday, and I ran in there at lunch time Wednesday to discover.....

new face on Kyla!!! 

It is rounder,

the line up of the London series - she definitely looks older

her right hand is different

and definitely a different face - that is why she came home with me.
I'm yet to check her over entirely, but she is to me a whole new doll, no repeats except for box name.
TRU also had Meredith from the London series. I thought at the time her face had changed also, but I'm not quite certain now.


Sunday, July 13, 2014

My day in Sydney, by Maddie Foster

! and another ! just for emphasis
Catherine's been a little strange of late, nothing unusual there (Hey) and beside that she keeps giving me little things, when its not even my birthday - not that birthdays are the only time for gifting nor are they gifting compulsory, even though I like them.  She's not offering any explanation for it though, well she wasn't, and it was getting a little embarrassing, what would my friends think? But they keep grinning everytime - I think they know something and their keeping it secret.

So the latest instalment was this...

a wetsuit - a short one at that, a boogie board and a pair of sunnies.  Catherine it's the middle of winter, there might be some good intent here, or insanity - the short wetsuit really wont help though. It's starting to feel a little like Xmas - the 12 days song where the poor fellow in one version is exclaiming at the absurd generosity of his true love until it gets out of hand - be very wary of partridges, geese and leaping lord is all I can think.

So anywho, boogie board and wetsuit stowed, I did decide to wear in the sunnies - they are very comfy.

Last week Catherine's sister Roothie invited her to go to Sydney on Tuesday the 8th. They were going to go to a museum or two, opshopping and visiting a Toys r us down there. It sounded good, there was even a ride on a train!  It was a last minute invitation, but Catherine asked if I wanted to go Monday afternoon, cool I thought, but I did have some reservations considering my size vs the rest of the world. Roothie was all for my coming, and Catherine offered to take a bag so I could sit in it for her to carry me if the crowd got too much.

It wasn't until a little later that she tells me I've got to be ready to go by 5.15 - in the morning!!  We've gone for walks in the dark of a morning before, but its been a least 6 ish, and there hasn't been the butterfly nerves then to compete with a sound sleep. I could tell though that Cath was counting on me so, with much apologies in advance to my roomies I set my alarm so I would be ready in time.

The morning - the brightness is not sunshine - it is flash and the laundry light, and well I had to wear my sunnies. Man it was cold, the scarf was just the thing, and a jacket and tights and ugg boots, lucky the jacket had pockets. This is me actually waiting for Catherine.

Finally we made it into the car, I must admit though we were out the door and in the car by the time Catherine had suggested, hmm I did keep the sunnies on a bit longer, a little bleary of eyed myself, even after the car internal light was turned off.
Theres not much to see on the bit over 3/4 hour drive down to the Train station, but we did see Foxes near the chicken farm at the other end of town - we caught them for just a moment dazzled by the headlights of the car, and then they were off into the bush, naughty boys I reckon. Its kind of an odd feeling seeing them in the wild, when the two naughties in Catherine and Jason's care are just outside the backdoor of their house.
We made it to the station. I think it was even colder there, but it could have been because we'd been in the car with the heater on, on the way down.  We got there maybe 5 minutes before Roothie, so it was perfect time for a photo.  That's the station behind me. Its perched on the side of the hill, with stair or lift options for getting up to the access to the platform that you then have to go down to.
It was still dark, but it was quite amazing that the carpark was almost full already, more cars than people on the station too, they must have got up really early.

 A few train station selfies.. we took the lift up to the access platform

in the lift
buying tickets, wow there's a lot of places to go to. Our train route according to Roothie was once called the Flyer so it would only stop a couple of times on the way to Central - which is Sydney's major station. Our train actually comes to a full stop there, and all the passengers have to get off as it can't go any further. Most often it just makes the return trip back to Newcastle. It was going to take about 2 and 1/2 hours one way.
The seats on the station were made of steel and way too cold to sit on
So I went for a run down the platform, the train wasn't due for about 10 minutes or so. Catherine reckoned the train would be long enough for me to get on another carriage if I wasn't back to them in time, but she doesn't realise I can run quite fast.
The train did come, I was back with heaps of time - it was awesomely long, I reckon it went from one end of the station to the other. It was silver, and a double decker.
Theres a gap between the train and the station platform, just big enough for me to fall all the way through - I didn't photograph it as I was concentrating on jumping the gap.
We picked to go up stairs. There were not many people about at the time, so I got to sit on the seat opposite Catherine and Roothie and look back at the scenery as we passed it. It was still fairly dark, so it was mostly the shapes of the skyline and the lights from streets and houses and shops. 
 A few on train selfies...

These pictures were about 1/2 way on our trip. The scenery as you get to the Central Coast is so beautiful. There is a water way, twisting through National Parks. There are even little houses perched here and there and you know you'd have to have a boat to go anywhere as there are no roads to be seen. There is the train of course, but even still, you'd need a boat to get to the station. There were tunnels too, they were exciting and almost frightening especially when a train came the other way.
The crowd picked up shortly after this, and I ended up having to share seats with Catherine and Roothie.
I tried to get some pics of the scenery as it changed from forest of gums to backyards and railway lines, but was not so successful. It was awesome once we started to get closer the number of train lines criss crossing everywhere, we'd certainly hit peak hour by the time we arrived, there were people galore.

 This was us at Central, me and Roothie after a much needed toilet break. This is the end of the country lines for the state rail, I think it is less busy here above ground where we country bumpkins alight, but down below there are more stations, and the rush of the working day. We found a Hungry Jacks and had a yummy hot breakfast before we went any further. It was just after 9 o'clock.

We noticed the battery power on the camera was starting to run a bit low already, so we tried to conserve it a little by waiting until we got to our first sight seeing place.
Roothie had the day all mapped out

500 m
2000 ft
Powerhouse Museum
500 Harris St, Ultimo NSW
Now this was a cool train.  The one we came down to Sydney in was electric, this was steam powered.


The carriages were set up like the olden days. I think this was the carriage for animals - there was a pretend chicken in a cage

This is a model of the Strasburg clock, we decided not to wait the hour or so before it would do its thing, but took a pic anyway and moved on.  Majorly liked the staircase, I think it was just my size, and that railing weeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Old cash register, in pounds and stuff

Its a shame this pic didn't turn out better, it was supposed to represent the surface of the planet Mars, there was even a section for some students to work on a robot.

Not these robots, they're old mechanised toys

human battery (sounds a bit cruel actually)

Electricity - cool

steam ferry

Russian lunar explorer

And one of the coolest things - a moon rock

Inside the engine of a steam train

sail power

the cafeteria for people power.
It was our intention to go to the Australian Museum after this. Catherine had thought it was like a natural history thing - animals and stuff. We were going to walk, and after a little while realised we had no idea where we were, despite the map. Also the size of the map to real scale was deceiving, Roothie thought a cabbie would be best option for direction, and we got a ride to the right place.
When we got there however, there was a Tyranasoarus (big dinosaur) exhibit going on, and being school holidays, everybody else was going there as well. We decided we'd skip that this time and go to Oxford street to do a little retail therapy at the Op Shop.
Well, you know that map size thing again, but we did eventually make it, and on foot.
We decided to go to another opshop with more variety (as described by the cashier) and thought, as we were a little lost to catch a cab again.  We had to laugh, as the shop was actually only a street away from the train station at Central.
Not peckish enough to eat yet, we went to Central and caught a train to Chatswood. This was like a step towards making our way home.  Chatswood was packed. It was well into lunch time which would have added to the throng.  We decided to stop for lunch, in an outdoor cafe, rather than the eatery in the shopping centre.  MMMM burger.

and a drink
We made it to Hornsby station with about 20 minutes spare for our connection, so a quick dash for a hot chocolate, and a sit in the afternoon sun.  Thanks Roothie for a lovely day.

One more selfie

Catherine and me.
I think I fell asleep on the way home. Catherine had to stand up for the first hour as the train was overcrowded, but she was still grinning when we got off at Cardiff.  She might have been grinning at me being a bit drowsy.
On the way home I was almost nodding off again when Catherine asked if I thought I could go travelling for more than one day? And with her? I nodded and yawned. What about Hawaii?
What!! had I heard right? I was definitely awake, asked her if she was kidding, apparently not, well that might explain a few things.