Sunday, January 31, 2016

January - A Retrospective

Can you believe January is almost over? Feels like the other day I was celebrating the start of the year. If only I could get into the swing of writing 2016, just the other day I wrote 2015 on something. Oh well, takes me a little while to get into that habit.

So this month was kind of up and down with my successes and non-successes. I did manage to curb my spending a great deal. Overall I think I spent a little over 100 dollars for my entire doll and fabric purchases for the month. Ideally I'd like it less, but in December I was dropping 100 dollars per shopping trip easy, any improvement is a good thing. And that is including Sweet Tea even though in reality she almost cost nothing and that Purple Rock Fairy that I sent back to Mattel (still waiting for my voucher in the mail). I'm hoping to keep my expenses low, but I'm not sure if I can do that with all those new dolls Mattel just announced. I'm trying to keep my wish list practical, but it keeps growing and growing!

I did have some things sell this month over on E-bay. I have a very successful month with 9 sales! Some of them were things that I'd had listed for a long time, so I'm thrilled to see them move on out to someone who will appreciate them. Didn't have too much success in getting new things listed, I tried the last few days but I fell into a funk and it's been hard getting motivated. I just been feeling so glum/tired/worn out lately. I did spend a good chunk of time working on listings I had finished that E-bay wiped from the system. I have about 50 listings or so I need to recreate. Luckily I still have the pictures and texts. I did work on that for a bit today hoping to get them back on the site, but E-bay was so glitchy I had to give up on it. I want to make some actual progress in February. I want to get a good chunk of the old listings recreated as well as some new ones. Hopefully I have enough free slots, there's a lot that need to get listed.

I did end up joining the Barbie Collector club and am I'm still not sure if that was a good decision or not. One of the reasons was to get access to the forums. The way that people talk about not being able to get into them on other groups made it seem like it was something special but .... they're really not that impressive. A few sections, very few people actually chatting, a clunky set up, and there's so much negativity! I know I complain as much as the next person, but the level of how much people don't like anything or feel like Mattel owes them is out of this world. And they're so dramatic! The free shipping promo still hasn't come back, so I'm going to wait and see how much value being a member really is to me. Even with half of the quarterly rewards getting used up by shipping, I'd still be getting 40 dollars for 25 dollars. However that only works out if I find something I want to use my rewards on. I'm not a huge collector Barbie person, so while I may end up using my rewards it all depends if what I used it on has value. At least the chair we'll get in March should be cool.

Time will tell! 
Hope everyone had a good January!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Another one off the list

I bought a doll today. I know I'm trying to be better about dolly spending but at least it was something off my wish list and if you look at it, it practically cost me nothing. Speaking of wish lists, I'm thinking of either starting a new one or adding to the one I already created. I think I'd prefer making a second one. I'd like to be able to compare what my list started out at to where it ended, so I think making a second one would be best. Sad thing is, I started the list to keep me from getting dolls and here I am making a second list and it certainly hasn't stopped me from shopping (but I have dialed back a great deal).

I finally broke and bought Sweet Tea. I was hoping to buy her from Mattel when I joined the Barbie Collector club and use the first of the four quarterly discounts on her, but with the new Silkstone coming out I decided to use it on that doll instead. I was thinking about buying both of them the first time since they had a spend 75 dollars and get free shipping, but that promo seems to have disappeared so I'm not really sure what I'm going to do. Way back when the Roman Holiday Audrey Hepburn doll was on sale I got a shipping estimate for her, it ended up being 10 dollars for just the one doll. The 80 dollars in rewards sounds decent, unless you're losing 40 dollars of it in shipping charges whenever you use it. I know that they do free shipping promos and whatnot at certain times but I just hate waiting for them to get a sale going to buy what I want. I'd much rather spend 75 dollars or slightly more including some things I don't really want than spend 65 dollars on stuff I do want and have to pay 10 dollars or more on shipping. So right now I'm thinking my Collector club stance. I can't join right now either way since I'm waiting to get a replacement pin number for my debit card. It's been a huge hassle (somewhat created by myself), but I'm been working on getting a new card/pin reset since before the new year.

Since the Silkstone has yet to show up in my regular retailers, I decided to buy Sweet Tea. The real push for that decision was that I remembered I had some items I had gotten at Christmas that I needed to return. I didn't have the receipt and I knew it was going to be a hassle (and make my social anxiety go through the roof), but if I returned them I could use the money to get something I wanted and get rid of three things I didn't want and get something I've been meaning to get done, done. (Win, win, win!) 

I decided to buy Sweet Tea from Amazon since it was the same price as Walmart, but came with free prime shipping. I'll hold onto the Walmart card to use on normal things I would have otherwise paid cash for. I thought it would get here sooner from Amazon, but the joke's on me. I ordered it late on Wednesday and it's not due to get here until Monday. I did put an add on item of a water bottle (I've decided to give up bringing disposable water bottles with my lunch to work) but even alone the doll wasn't getting here until Monday so it wasn't the water bottle slowing it down. I even checked other prime listings, all said they wouldn't get here until Monday. I'm not sure what's going on, I bought it and hoped for the best. The item already shipped  but they shipped it parcel post. What's going on Amazon? That is not Prime "Two Day" shipping. So I'm a little concerned about that. I'm curious to know if this is a one time deal or if it's the new norm. Hopefully it's not, the fast shipping is the only thing I get out of having Prime. And it that goes away, I don't see any real reason to continue paying for it.

So while Sweet Tea is on her way, I'm not crossing her off the list until she arrives. With the way Mattel's quality control has been she'll have some weird issue and I'll have to send her back. However I can be hopeful she's doesn't have any issues and I don't have to return her. Although I'm not sure if she's a new doll, a body donor, or even just a spare articulated body. That all depends on if I like her when she arrives. *Shoulder shrug*  

Friday, January 15, 2016

So people have been getting the new Articulated Silkstone

So people have been getting the new Articulated Silkstone, and boy are they not impressed with her.

The doll first showed up on E-bay from a dealer a few days ago and that caused a little flurry of new information and people hunting it down elsewhere when that seller sold out. Then it started showing up at a few dealers, some had it for pre-order and some had it in stock. There's still no official release from Mattel for the doll as of yet (and I'm sure they're thrilled all these dealers are selling it before they are). Today I did see a review of it on Youtube. I think the person who posted it has a deal with their doll dealer and they got it sent to them early so they could review it, and someone over on In the Pink showed their real life pictures of the doll after it arrived in the mail.

The biggest complaints I've been see with it are; the elbows seem weak, the torso is more like the belly button body than the original Silkstone torso, the boots are made out of plastic, and the doll doesn't come with any underwear. These are all valid reasons why not to like something, it's funny how quickly the tides have turned. When the dolls first started showing up people were going crazy for them, snatching them up whenever they showed up I was beginning to wonder if there were going to be any left when I was able to buy them (I do want one, but I refuse to pay inflated prices so I can be one of the first to get one). Now I'm thinking there's going to be plenty available when they're actually released since people's opinion of getting them has soured to "I'm not getting them" or "I'm selling them when they arrive!".

I read one person bemoan the fact that the new bodies are like the belly button body, claiming those bodies only look good when dressed as "hoochies". At first I was offended, then I laughed and shook my head. That's one of my favorite bodies to sew for! And while I do agree that the Silkstone body has better proportions for 50's silhouettes, I wouldn't so far as to say the belly button body only look good dressed provocatively. Charlotte's on a belly button body, and while I fully admit she loves showing a little leg, she usually tends to dress pretty conservatively. (Just don't go and judge her current since right now she's topless).

The fact the doll doesn't come with underwear isn't a huge deal for me, I can just make my own but I understand why people are bothered by her not wearing any in the box. She does have a full skirt that you can (to quote Dorrie) "see up clear up Broadway" even when the doll is still in her box. The Silkstone line was known for it attention to detail, so something as minor as underwear being omitted could annoy people who are already upset and saddened over the loss of quality in the line. The boots however I'm a little less forgiving for people being upset about. Lots of people are complaining how they should be made out of a more realistic material. Mattel very rarely makes shoes other than molded plastic ones. I do think that boots don't really work with the doll's stock outfit, perhaps a pair of classic black pumps would be better, but all of the Silkstones I've purchased new have come with basic plastic shoes. And yeah, you may not like them, but it's the easiest thing to change. I am a self identified doll shoe hoarder, but it's not that hard to get shoes that fit the Silkstone foot, especially since they can share shoes with the Model Muse bodies.

The elbows I can't comment on until I see one in person. I'm sure they do feel weak, hopefully they are sturdier than they seem. I'm still excited for the articulated Silkstone, but I'm waiting for her to arrive at a regular retailer before getting her. The Barbie Collector club has opened the 2016 membership for returning members, the new members have to wait until the 19th to sign up. I'm still waiting for my replacement debit card to arrive in the mail so I can join. I'm not sure if I'm willing to wait that long for either doll, but if I do become a member I would like to use the quarterly rewards on both The Look Brunette doll and the Silkstone. But that all depends on lots of things including how impatient I can be.

And we should all know how impatient I am. 

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Well Shut Me Up Universe, Shut Me Up

I went off to Walmart today after work in the search for the Hasbro Disney Princess dolls, I also stopped in to stock up on bread since I am in love with the garlic herb bread my store sells.

Carbs are second to dolls in my life. 

My store finally did get some of the the Hasbro dolls in stock. They had Ariel, Cinderella, Mulan, Elsa, and Anna. I did a random price check on Elsa and she rang up as 8.88. I was sort of tempted to get one of them, but then I checked the Barbie section and found THE ACCESSORY PAKS I've been looking for! They had the sushi date set and the baking set! Just after bemoaning the fact I'd never find them, I find them. I'm super shocked since there's practically no information out there regarding them. They also had a cleaning set, an acoustic guitar set, and a dog with accessory set, but none of them really called to me so I left them there. I had the guitar in my hand for a while, but the main reason why I wanted it was so that Joe could use it and the guitar was covered in a huge sticker that was very "Barbie-fied" so I decided I didn't really need it and could find something better elsewhere. I also decided to wait on the Disney doll. I had the opportunity to examine Anna, Kristoff, and Pocahontas recently and ... color me unimpressed. I was surprised with how big they are, I thought they were vintage Skipper sized but it turns out they're teen Skipper sized. Their heads are HUGE though. I was hoping to rebody them to Barbie sized bodies, but their noggins are huge. Bigger than the Disney store I think. Right now I'm still curious to see who can wear their shoes, but for the most part my interest in them has lessened. I still want one to see what they're like, but I'm willing to wait until they're on sale.  I wasn't really expecting too much, but it feels like same old dolls, different manufacturer.

I did leave Walmart with the two accessory paks that I've been wanting to find and they are so cute! I haven't gotten the chance to use them with Charlotte yet, but Joe's been playing with them. A little annoying thing, on the bottoms on a lot of them there's an extra ring of plastic. This is designed to go with a play set so they can click into place and be easier to play with. A great idea for the play set, but I don't have it nor do I want it. This leaves me with an extra bit of plastic that makes items uneven on the bottom. Luckily I'm proficient in using a nail file to sand off what I don't like.

So it's only the 13th and I get to update my wish list again! I also added a new item to the list, the pivotal Silkstone since real life pictures of her leaked and I think she's stunning. I love the cat eye she's got going on. I'm wondering if I should update the Purple Gem Fairy cross out, I contacted Mattel and they asked me to send her back so they could look at her issues in person. I can't really X her out if I don't have her any more, can I? Especially since I'm not sure if I like her enough to get another one.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Purple Gem Fairy Barbie Pictures

Here are the picture I promised of the Purple Gem Fairy Barbie doll from Mattel. They took longer than I expected since I had to recharge the camera battery. I'm going to have to contact Cannon about it. I just charged the battery last weekend and hadn't used it since then. This camera is less than a year old, the battery shouldn't be failing this quickly.
The doll arrived late last week, but this particular doll not going to be staying. When she first arrived I noticed some flaking at her neck before I even removed her from the package. I was hoping it was just misplaced hair gel, but it turns out it was a gouge and a cut to her neck. The flaking was the damaged vinyl lifting up. 

That was bad enough, but I also noticed she has a weird mold line that circles her right eye (which is hard to photograph, but noticeable in person).

 But even though her damage keeps her from sticking around, I can still photograph her. The doll does come with a headband that's been plastic tabbed to her head and with her hair in a high ponytail. I couldn't find the headband for the pictures (I know it's around here somewhere), but once you take it off you can't easily put it back on. The doll does have a center part in her hair which is nice since a high ponytail can be limiting. I did have to spend some time fixing the part, but with a pin it's easy to put the hair on the correct side and cover up any bald spots. The hair is very silky and soft with a vibrant color. I believe the doll uses the new face like on the Teresa Made to Move doll.  

The majority of the doll's clothes are molded onto her body except for her skirt. She has an odd construction in front. It's mostly painted details except for those three blue stones that are erupting from her chest. They're made out of a translucent blue plastic so they look like they should do something (like light up), but they're just decoration. It's weird.
Her shoes are cute. in the promo pictures it looks like they might be recasts of the Cinderella shoes, but they're very different. They are designed to look like faucet cut stone, but these shoes have a different shape. They remind me a lot of the 80's style pump, kind of a hybrid of the Cinderella shoes and 80's pumps. They're hard to see when they're on the purple plastic feet, but look killer on a regular doll. They're lovely shoes, hopefully Mattel starts making more delicate looking shoes again. Lately everything's been so clunky.

The doll does come with wings and she has a hole in her back for them to rest in. They're made out a thin plastic and just have the design on the front side. I'm not sure if they're supposed to click into place, there's plastic bits on mine that look intentional to the design to keep them from snapping into place on the doll. I think it's smart they can be removed, that will keep them from getting damaged, but they're going to be easily lost or fall out during play.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Cross one off the list...

So I made it to day 5 of the New Year without a dolly purchase.

Just after finishing my wish list, I get to cross something off it! Today I found the Purple Rock Fairy on sale at for just under 10 dollars. It's a relatively new doll that so far I've only seen on Amazon. They have it listed for 11.99, which is more than I wanted to pay. I've been watching it in the hopes it would go on sale, but now I can cross it off my list since I found it cheaper elsewhere. And actually I didn't end up spending any money for it. I had earned some Shop Your Way Points from Sears/Kmart's loyalty program in December that were due to expire in a few days so I was able to use them on the doll to get it for free! Can't knock that. It's due to arrive on Thursday. I really just want her for the shoes but I am curious to see how the doll looks in person. I'm not going to write a review on her, but I will take some pictures of her in case people are interested in seeing real life pictures of the doll.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Day three down....

Today's been a bit of a bummer day. I haven't been sleeping all that well these past few days. Falling asleep late, waking up a lot during the night, sleeping in late, and still being tired during the day is the new norm. I hate it, I wish I slept better. You'd think being so tired after being on my feet for hours when at work would tire me out, but clearly it doesn't. (Not that I've worked the past few days, but lately when I have, I still sleep poorly).

I also had an unfortunate incident with E-bay. Yesterday late at night I had someone do a buy-it-now on one of my auctions. Today I get a blunt message on that site from the buyer ordering me to cancel their purchase. I did it since A) I don't want someone to buy something they're not happy with and B) pressing the issue would just have them return it for some made up reason and I'd be out shipping both ways. I do not understand why they would buy something only to turn around and cancel it and I really do not understand why they had to be so rude! They could have at least said please. I'd be a bit more understanding if they had been a little nicer to me. For someone who has "Duke" in their user name, they certainly are common. But what's done is done, they've been refunded and have been added to my blocked bidder list.

Those two reasons and a few others I won't delve into put me in a bum mood. So I found myself window shopping, see how quickly I fall into old habits of buying something to put me into a better mood? I was over on E-bay looking through the vintage listings when I decided I needed to stop. I forced myself to click off the page. Seriously, it's been 3 days since the start of the new year, I need to have a little more self control. Instead of window shopping I .... window shopped. I made a picture of all the dolly things that I have on my current "wish list". It's mainly pictures of dolls but a lot of them I just want for their shoes (to the surprise of nobody).

Here's where we stand as of right now:

We have the following: 

1. Disney Store Rosetta doll, the first doll I just want for her shoes. She should be readily available since I buy from the Disney store lately twice a year and I've already bought her fellow Fairies Tinkerbell and Periwinkle HOWEVER in their infinite wisdom Disney store has only released her in Europe (and I believe Japan) and right now I refuse to spend over 50 dollars for a play line doll just to steal her shoes. I wish they'd just release her here. I don't know anyone overseas who can get her for me at a reasonable price.
2. Grace Kelly doll. One of the few dolls I regret not purchasing when they were originally released. For some reason Grace Kelly has skyrocketed on the secondary market. The "value" doll from the line in the blue dress goes for well over 100 dollars. I don't understand it since Audrey, Elizabeth, James Dean, and Marilyn dolls can be purchased for a lot less. Even the original black dress Audrey Hepburn goes for less than her. I really just want this doll's head since I'd want to redress her and don't care for the model muse body. 
3. Star Light Adventure doll, don't know her name. I just think she's super cool looking. Lately I've been getting more and more into dolls with fantasy colored hair. I like her bold blue hair and light purple skin tone. I do hate her body and I know that she'll be impossible to get a replacement body for, so she'll most likely be an admire from afar doll. 
4. Made 2 Move 2016 doll. I've already purchased the Lea, Barbie, and Teresa M2M dolls and honestly, don't really like them. I think some of the joints are rather clunky looking and I'm not a fan of the new torso shape (I'm just not ready to give up the belly button body). I do really love the double jointed elbows, even so much as to thinking about modifying a fashionista body so they can be used on it. I'd love to get Charlotte those arms but Teresa even though she's the darkest skin tone is far too light for Charlotte's early 90's tan. I think this is going to be too dark, but I can at least check it out. If I did get it, I'd swap out the hands. Those Hula Skipper hands remind me too much of Fashionista Ken's hands. 
5. Game designer Barbie. Brown glasses, 'nuff said. The doll is actually very pretty, but I don't plan on keeping her. I want her glasses and her green jacket. She and the rest of her clothes will most likely be re-sold.
6. Endless Hair Kingdom Barbie. She's got a big ol' noggin and hula skipper's hands, but I'm oddly compelled by her. I don't think I'll end up getting her, but there's something so interesting about her. She reminds me a lot of Lady Lovelylocks (a series before my time that never really garnered my interest). I am curious to see how articulated she is below the waist and what kind of body she has. I also like her face mold, it looks like a younger Barbie, she'd make a cute Skipper.
7. Hasbro Cinderella. I really just want to get a Hasbro Disney doll to see what they're like and who can wear their shoes. I was excited to see the new line up from Hasbro but I can't say I'm terribly impressed. They seem to have a lot of the same design issues as Mattel's dolls, just from a different company. I just picked a picture of Cinderella since she's my favorite and I think she looks the best of the bunch. Ariel's got a scary look on her face and Snow White looks more like Drizella. (Fairest in the land, not so much at Hasbro).
8. Barbie Gem Fairy Doll. Another one that I just mainly want for her shoes. They remind me of the live action Cinderella's shoes so I want them! I do sort of like the doll and her bold purple hair, but her face mold feels rather bland and the majority of her outfit is painted on. If I do get her, she'll be sold off.
9. Sushi pak set. I love this pak set, these little bagged clothing and accessories have been a great addition to the Barbie line! (Although I liked them better when they were 1.50 instead of 2.50). I've bought most of the shoe paks, and a few dresses. I was thrilled when I found this sushi accessory set and dreamed of Charlotte and Joe's sushi dinners. However I have yet to see these in stores and can hardly find them online. The only place I've found them is overseas, so I'm not sure if they've been released here in the States.
10. Baking pak set. Another accessory set that I adore. The little heart shaped measuring spoons make me giddy with their adorableness. As with above, I'm not sure if they've been released over here. So I'm not sure if I'll ever get either of them.
11. Purple pak top. This comes from the same line as the two above it. I don't usually like 80's styling, but this one purple peplum top is rocking my world! It just screams Jem to me! (Specifically my Clash doll) It looks stretchy so it should fit her easily. I even want to make a pencil skirt to go along with it. This one is in stock at Amazon for 6.99 so I guess it will end up in stores, I just have to find it. Which is easier said than done since I rarely find the time to go to Walmart.
12. Sweet Tea Look Barbie doll. The final doll on my wish list, Sweet Tea was originally there because I like the Laugenfield head mold and wanted to get one. Since then I did get the Tokidoki doll and like her a lot(but she will get re-rooted). I still want to get Sweet Tea since she's articulated (hopefully she's as pale as Tokidoki, but I doubt it) and I love her accessories. I'm a sucker for a little tea cup. She's one of the dolls I want to purchase from Barbie Collector if I become a member. 

I know it's a conflicting situation to pat myself on the back for not buying anything when I'm looking at stuff I want to buy, but at least I'm using the time to think about what I want to buy and compile it on a list. And really, none of these dolls are done deals, I still have plenty of time to talk myself out of buying them before the majority of them make it to store shelves. 

Hopefully tomorrow will be better.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Where do I go from here?

So I've been doing a lot of pondering lately about my collection. December was an expensive month for me on a variety of levels except for new vintage dolls. I will freely admit that I did spend a fair amount of time shopping for new vintage dolls, but I really didn't see anything that caught my eye. I've come to the conclusion that I think I have enough vintage dolls for now. I will always love them, but I think for right now I have enough of them to satisfy me. I do have a wide assortment of vintage dolls, whenever I was shopping the majority of the dolls I was seeing I already had one similar enough to make me not need this other doll. I know that there will be dolls that I find too cheaply to pass up and there are a few expensive vintage dolls I'm still hoping to add to the collection but for the most part I'm cooling down on vintage Barbie (for right now).

I did spent a fair amount of money on some Integrity dolls this past month. On their website they were selling off some extra stock at decent prices. I managed to pick up several dolls I liked for prices that I found affordable. I do like certain Integrity dolls, the original Vanessa face mold is lovely and I'm amassing a modest collection of Homme dolls. However, I'm not terribly impressed with certain aspects of the dolls. For dolls that are so expensive several of the ones I've gotten have had some pretty shoddy factory flaws. I know I got them for a deal, but for the prices they charge originally I should not be having such issues. These are things that I'd gripe about Mattel doing and the dolls I buy from them are usually a third of the cost of what I paid at Integrity. 

Speaking of Mattel I have been looking at what's coming out from them for the upcoming year, from both the collector and play lines. I'm hoping to join the Barbie collector club this year, there's a couple of higher end dolls I'm interested in and getting 20 dollars each quarter to spend at their shop sounds good even if I'm just using it to buy an articulated body for a different doll. The play line looks interesting this year, but I'm not sure how many of them will come home with me. From what I've seen so far, three dolls are getting released with glasses (now that Joe wears glasses full time I will always buy a doll with glasses). Out of the three only one looks to be actually different, and that's only because they're in a different color. It looks like the Game Developer Barbie is wearing the Eye Doctor glasses just in brown. Mattel's already released these glasses in light blue with the Ice Cream romper Fashionista doll (which I've already bought). The other two dolls look to have the same glasses at previously released dolls that I already own. But you'll never know what catches my eye and what I just have to have from Mattel. Sometimes a doll will just come along that I can't live without and a doll that I thought I'd like I end up not and she moves out, or never moves in at all.

I am a little worried about having too many dolls. I have been buying a lot the past few years and I'm concerned about running out of room and time. Sometimes there's a fine line between collector and hoarder and I do not want to cross it. I know people who live on their own and have so many doll things they have to rent storage units to keep everything in. And I worry about getting to that point. I want to have a collection that I like and enjoy, not have so much stuff that it can't even fit in my space. I'm going to try to focus on what I already have instead of focusing on my next accusation and having my collection be a focus on what's coming next in the mail. Also, I really do need to save my money for better things. I'm hoping to move out on my own soon and I'd be much better served not buying dolls and selling off what I don't want.

Watch, after I said this I'll be spending a ton of money tomorrow on dolls because I "need" them.

Because I love contradicting myself.

A (Fashionably) Late Christmas Post

Sheesh, it's been since mid-November that I've posted anything here! 

Sorry about that everybody. 

Now that I'm working December is just a blur. Since I'm working retail that's our busiest time so they just piled on the hours. I went from working 4 days a week at around 25 hours, to 5 days at almost 40 hours. And that's not including the week where they asked me to work 6 days instead of five. I ended up working 8 days in a row in that stretch! If I wasn't at work, I was resting from work, or preparing to go to work. I was also dealing with a (luckily minor) cold during that time. I'm glad I got a good head start on the families Christmas shopping. I got most of it done early and just had a few straggler presents that needed to get purchased before the big day.

Other aspects of Christmas weren't so lucky. I really didn't get a chance to do any Christmas decorating this year, not even the dolls! I got a grand total of three of them into their Christmas clothes, the rest of them spent their (luckily warm) December's nude. I had grandiose plans of even doing some holiday sewing and bought plenty of fabric but the only thing I made was a Christmas tree skirt for my mini-tree to cover the new wooden base of it since the original plastic base got broken in storage and was no longer keeping the tree upright. I do keep blaming work, but my Christmas eyes are always bigger than my Christmas stomach and I always have bigger plans than I accomplish. At least now I know if I'm still working retail next December that I need to get started on Christmas as early as possible. If I hold off until December I just won't have time to get it done! For me (personally) Christmas will have to start after Halloween!

While the pre-Christmas season was a bit of a rush and had plenty of irate customers, I still love Christmas. My family had a good Christmas, again a low key one. I didn't even put up the tree! I used the mini-tree instead. It wasn't a doll heavy Christmas this year. I got an X-box 360 (that I mostly paid for), a pair of glasses for Joe, a pair of Grocho Marx glasses that mostly fit Joe, four large golden plastic shoe decorations specifically from my father, a Disney Barbie from my sister, and a display made from images cut from a film of Sleeping Beauty also from my Sister. It was a good Christmas.

Now that it's over, I'm hoping to get back into my normal routine. Work has dialed down considerably, the past two weeks I've only been working three days. Which is a lousy paycheck, but it does give me time to work on things outside of work for the first time in weeks. Lately I've been working on cleaning up the mess. In December things kind of just piled up around here. I just did not have the time or the energy to deal with them. So I've been working on cleaning up, putting away, and throwing out what I can. Hopefully I'll be getting back into dolls and dolls sewing before too long. I still want to do my Christmas sewing. I'm thinking that if I start in January, I might actually get things done before Christmas 2016! I'm also going to be getting back into E-bay. I have lots of stuff to list. I'm setting myself a goal of 10 new listings for this month. I took December off, but I think that goal is reachable and will get me back into the swing of things. 

I hope everyone who celebrates had a Merry Christmas and is having a great 2016!