Saturday, April 19, 2014

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Adventures in Motherhood: Diaper Cover Update

So we ended up getting a diaper service from Green Diaper Babies in Chicago and so far so good!  I really like being able to change diapers with wild abandon where when using the disposables...I keep like a running tally of money in my head every time I switch one.  I don't know why. We are still using disposables when we leave the house for any amount of time just for the ease of things and I occasionally toss him in one at night when I am changing the diaper at 3am.  He tends to hate diaper changes and anything to make the screaming stop as soon as possible at 3a is a good thing.

So the diaper covers I made are working great.  I could have skipped the newborn size and gone straight to the small size though.  I also did not need to put the "flap pockets" on the inside because I never use them to hold the diaper in place.  I use snappis to keep the cloth diaper on.  So I will skip that step when making the next size.  This first batch uses velcro closures.  The velcro is fast to get on and off but when I am undoing it, the sound sometimes startles the baby leading to more crying.  The 'male' side of the velcro is also making the elastic a bit of a mess by catching on it...but that is fine really.  You also have to be sure to close the velcro before you toss it in the laundry bag.

The PUL fabric has been washing well but I have found that you can't just leave #2 on it and expect it to come out in the wash.  I keep a can of lysol wipes right next to the tub of baby wipes and use one of the lysol wipes to wipe down the inside of the diaper cover whenever there is a blow out before I put it in the laundry bag.  If the diaper is just getting a little smelly but not soiled, then I have been giving them a rinse in the sink and hanging to dry.  I am not putting these in the dryer.

I did break down and buy the snap tool and a bag of white snaps to use for the next round.  I thought they would be useful to general baby-clothes making as well.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Adventures in Motherhood: Birth Story and `Packing the Hospital Bag Part 2: Electric Boogaloo!' I had that baby back on February 26th...and I am only now getting around to updating things!  Crazy times.  But awesome fun times.  Anyhow, here is the lowdown on what worked and what didn't and a new updated list.

But first I need to explain the circumstances of the actual birth.  I was a couple of days past my due date and had my morning NST scheduled for 9a followed by the weekly visit to my obgyn at noon.  My mom wanted to come with to see an ultrasound and also to figure out where the hospital is and parking etc.  At this point it is still CRAZY COLD in maybe 5 degrees, so we were still not keeping the bags in the car.  Plus this was my mom's car.  Brian had ours at work down in River North.

NST's were boring as usual and the quickie ultrasounds showed everything was peachy. I had to schedule another NST for friday as I was at the 'twice a week' point.  Based on discussions with my doctor the week before, we figured that if labor had not started by friday, we would induce as she did not want me going past a week overdue.  After the NST, we went to the Golden Apple to carbo-load on pancakes which ended up being a VERY good thing as I would not eat again until close to 7p!  YIKES.  So after breakfast we headed to the doctor and all was fine until they took my blood pressure which was gonzo.  I normally have low low blood pressure and this was nutty.  So, the doctor said I had to turn right back around and head over to the OB Triage at the hospital just to get checked out.  At this point we thought about going back to the apartment to get the bags, but we figured if they did admit me, Brian would have to go back to the house anyway and he could grab them.  I had knitting with me so I knew I could wait for a while and my mom had her Kindle so we headed to the hospital AGAIN.  
Triage was eternal.  The cot was uber-uncomfie.  After like ten billion questions, three dozen monitoring devices, and a supremely uncomfortable hospital gown, they decided to admit me and induce labor asap.  ASAP however, turned out to be a very long time.  I got there just after 1p and was not able to get a room in Labor/Delivery until after 9pm.  My phone ran out of juice around 6p.  Once they put the wretched IV in my hand, knitting proved to be pretty uncomfortable.  I could do it for a little while and then had to rest. I watched a Rizzoli and Isles marathon and tried to nap when possible.  I sent my mom back to our apartment at 4p and my husband got to the hospital at 7p.

So at this point, the three things that I needed the MOST that I did not have were: 

  1. lips were sahara dry within an hour of being there.  I had left mine in the car but I knew there was some in my bag...which was not going to arrive until my husband got off work. 
  2. A tank top or sleep bra or even a tube top...they made me take off my underwire bra which was a big mistake.  Those hospital gowns are far from soft and within an hour, my boobs were not pleased...a barrier was definitely needed.  I finally gave up and put the bra back on leaving the strap off of one shoulder so I could later take it off and pull it through the arm of my gown when it came time to PUSH (so that we could do the skin to skin thing and nurse easily).  When it came time to nurse, I was already raw and uncomfortable which made for a rough and painful couple of days.  Grumble.
  3. Magazine...something mind numbing and distracting would have been great.  I only had my phone and my knitting...which both ended up not working for me.  I guess I could have sent my mom to the hospital gift shop to get me chapstick and magazines, but honestly it never occurred to me in the moment.
Okay, so once we got admitted, the bags came into the room.  Our labor room was pretty big but there was not a closet in which to stash bags.  We had to stuff them under a chair.  There were a few hooks on doors from which things could be hung...which might have been a better storage option had a packed in an upright tote. The duffle ended up being in the way a lot for Brian.  So this would be something to look for when you do your hospital there a place to stow things?  Tailor your bags to the space you get as much as possible.  

Now some of the things I packed were immediately negated due to my preeclampsia.  Because I was on an IV drip, taking a shower to deal with the impending labor pains was out of the question.  Grumble.  I was also not able to easily walk around and pound my feet or do things like get on the floor and use the birthing balls etc.  I had several interventions to get labor going (pitocin, balloon thingy) and the pain was fine...then they broke my water and shit got real.  Barfing and screaming ensued.  For a while I managed...doing the breathing, and vocalizing, stomping feet in bed, and squeezing or pounding the birth balls.  I used the heating pad a bit too.  I tried the birth ball but it was too weird and unruly having to deal with the iv and the wretched blood pressure cuff on each arm.  By 5:30a i had only dilated to 6cm and I knew I was not going to make it to 10cm without the dreaded epidural. I waved the white flag and the anesthesiologist was there within the half hour.  

The epidural was scary and horrible but done in a flash and things became more manageable instantly.  The instant relief from the mega pain far outweighed my dread.  Evidently, I should send flowers to that doctor because it was maybe 15 minutes tops and most women I know said it was much longer and harder for theirs. At first it was only working on one side, but a nurse propped me on some pillows and both sides went numb.  Brian and I both got a two hour nap in.  It was glorious.  A nurse came back to check on my at around 8a and bam 10cm!  All I needed to do was relax.  They said to expect deliver around 11 or so.  I shared the info via text with my mom who in turn thought she could take her time getting over to the hospital.  At like 8:30a, the obstetrician came round to introduce herself and check my progress and she was like..."um there's the head".  What time is it?  GAMETIME! 

I sent a text to my mom updating her to get her sweet fanny over here ASAP.  There was some scrambling around the room with lots of people and lights and scrub gowns and gloves etc.  I was keeping pretty calm and Brian, well i don't know....he seemed to be keeping it together. It was time to put all those things I had read to good use.  I had made a facebook post earlier that instead of reading all those baby books in prep, I really should have just hung out naked in front of a lot of strangers.  That was one of the harder things to deal with initially...there is no such thing as modesty in childbirthing.  Also, you can't control all of the things.  Shit happens and it is better to roll with it instead of crying over it.  Do what you can to be prepared and have a plan in place, but also be prepared to have all of that thrown out the window   

We were pushing by 9a.  The doc said I was a pro at the push.  I told her I was using theatre breathing exercises and the "coffee plunger" visualization that I got from the Juju Sundin Birth Skills book (which I totally recommend btw...even though I was not able to have a natural childbirth, this book helped in many ways).  I pushed like four times and at 9:21a.  My mom got there at about 9:31 in time to see him on my chest.  He was a big boy and beautiful and healthy with hair and giant alert eyes.  All was right in the world.  I only needed one stitch and there were no other complications. The epidural wore off at the perfect time (again flowers should be sent) and I was able to get up to use the loo about a half hour after the doctors had finished with my business.  We were transferred to mother/baby recovery by noon.  

Sadly, we got one of the tiny tiny rooms...we are not small it was crowded.  I was fine.  The bed was liveable and the bassinet with baby joe was right there.  The couch/bed thing for Brian was likely going to kill him though and I knew he was going to be a hot mess if he slept on it more than one night.  I sent him home for a part of the day to get a shower and a nap and he came back later that night.  Before he left, I packed up eveything that we no longer needed and sent it home with him which was an EXCELLENT move.  One less bag to deal with when we checked out and less clutter in the room (FYI..this room did have a closet!) 

I finally was able to take a shower and get into my own clothes on thursday morning.  It was glorious.  Brian had an audition that afternoon and then he came back in the evening for awhile.  I sent him home to get a decent night's sleep and he came back on friday morning to pick us up and take us all home.  

Over those days, I attempted to knit some more (again it was hard because of the IV...which they left in until thursday and was then sore for almost a week after).  I read magazines occasionally.  Mostly though, there was not much free time really.  Between feeding the baby and the constant stream of nurses and then feeding myself and diaper changes and bathroom breaks etc...I just wanted to nap or watch tv...not very exciting I know.  

So If you made it through the saga...then you are rewarded with the list again. I bolded the neccessities, added some notes, and put a strike through on the stuff I should have skipped.  I definitely think two bags was over kill.  Yes the winter was messing with things, but one bag and a small train case with toiletries would have worked just fine and kept me from overpacking.

Bag #1...a duffle with a pull out handle and wheels:

-For Brian: sweats to sleep in, two t-shirts, a hoodie, slippers, a change of socks and underwear, and a bath towel. 
-For Me: Bath robe, nursing tank, maternity bra, disposable nursing pads, old pair of cut off sweats I won't miss, old huge t-shirt I won't miss, pj pants, slippers I won't miss, ankle socks, festive stripey knee socks, black sweatsuit and top, boyshort undies in one size up.
-For Baby: Newborn winter sleeper, socks, knit hat, 0-3 months sleeper with matching hat, cuddly blanket for the car trip home, and a receiving blanket.

-Random Other Stuff: A waterproof disposable mattress pad thingie my sister nabbed from her hospital.  

bag #2:

Entertainment: a couple of magazines, BBC Pride and Prejudice on dvd, a small knitting project with all the needed items to keep me busy, spare cell phone charger, a small notebook and pen
Snacks:  goldfish crackers, granola bars, and three of those GoPicnic packaged meals.  
Toiletries: simple men's travel kit at target for $6 with soap, deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, a razor, and shaving cream for Brian.  spare pair of glasses for both him and me. For me, I packed a simple self contained Benefit travel makeup kit, smashbox bb cream, travel cleanser, travel moisturizer, pre-moistened face wipes, contacts, lip balm, cocoa butter cream, deodorant, razor, a really really fancy set of travel shampoo and conditioner to treat my hair nice, a brush that both brian and I can use, a headband, ponytail holders, and toothbrush.

Randomness:  A little plastic massager thingie, a bedazzled backscratcher, my trusty heating pad, ye olde stool softener, and a fold up reusable grocery store bag to bring anything extra home from the hospital, flask of whiskey.

*optional...meaning it was nice to have but we could have easily lived without...
BAG #1 A Duffle with wheels 

-For Him: sleep pants, t-shirt, underwear, socks, slippers, sweatshirt/hoodie*. (Your husband can go home and get more to wear...or since he is a man, he likely has no problem wearing the same thing for three days), phone charger (if different from yours).
-For You: Bath robe*, nursing tank, maternity bra*, old pair of cut off sweats, old huge t-shirt, slippers, ankle socks, black sweatsuit and top, boyshort undies in one size up.
-For Baby: Newborn sleeper with feet, plain white onesie with long sleeve mitten hands, knit hat, 0-3 months sleeper with feet, cuddly blanket for the car trip home, and a receiving blanket.

-For Him: deodorant and a toothbrush or a simple men's travel kit at target for $6*, spare pair of glasses or contacts and a case.
-For You: hairbrush, basic makeup, moisturizer, cleanser, LIP BALM, shampoo, conditioner, razor, toothbrush, toothpaste, headband, ponytail, glasses, and contacts. ***I really recommend bringing really nice stuff in travel sizes.  This will be the best shower or your life...bring the good stuff.  And makeup will make you feel better. Also, braid your hair and then take it out when it is dry for photos and you will have pretty waves.  

-a couple of magazines, (you can always send someone to get more), a small craft project or a puzzle book, spare cell phone charger, a small notebook and pen to jot down memories and important stuff

-goldfish crackers, granola bars, dried cranberries.

Randomness:  A fold up bag for extras to bring home. Quarters and dollars for the vending machine. an itzbeen....we love it.

New Jem/Pizzazz "In Stitches" IT DIrect Gift Set! GORGEOUS

Not sure why I haven't posted about this yet because OH MY SWEET LORD IT IS AWESOME!!!  So this was a surprise to IT Gift Set!  I was stunned and so very pleased to be getting this set.  It is really a great idea to do the paired designs in different colors for the dolly frenemies. Unlike the Who is he Kissing Gift Set which was and still is available in most doll shops and the IT store, the In Stitches Gift Set is only available through IT.   The set was available first to club members at a nice discount and is now available for all.  I got my set before the confidential time period was even over!  It was difficult not to spam everyone with pictures because the set is killer and even better in person.  I took some time the other day to comb our and style the hair on them both.  With a little water and combing, Jem's hair is nice and long in soft curls and would make a great rock and curl Jem stand in.  Pizzazz is FIERCE.  Both of the outfits are highly detailed and there are some great mix and match pieces here.  Many have noticed that Jem's yellow dress would make a great City Lights with only the addition of a belt, necklace and tights! 

Item # 14048  

In Stitches
JEM™ / Phyllis "PIZZAZZ" Gabor™ Duet Gift Set 
Limited Edition of 750 Dolls Worldwide
Approximate Ship Date: In-stock (Should ship shortly after payments are received) 
Price: $185.00 US (General Public) / $165.00 (W Club Members Special Price) 
Doll Tech Specs:

Body Type: Color Infusion / JEM
Head Sculpts: Jem and Pizzazz
Quick Switch Feature: No
Skin Tones: Jem/FR White and Pizzazz/Japan Tones
Hair Color: Curly Pink and Neon Chartreuse
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand Applied

Dressed in never before released looks from the hit 80's TV series JEM AND THE HOLOGRAMS by HASBRO, the In Stitches Duet Gift Set has everything truly outrageous rock stars need to take the stage!

JEM and Phyllis "PIZZAZZ" Gabor are 12-inch fully articulated vinyl dolls with glamorous rooted hair styles and hand applied eyelashes. Produced for the first time in doll form, each lead singer's look meticulously reproduces TV-show inspired costumes and the Integrity Toys Design Team spared no details! This fantastic set comes complete with two dolls, each wearing their own version of SHANA ELMSFORD's rockin' fashion, microphones, miniature reproductions of Shana's fashion sketches, shoes, earrings, alternate hands and each comes with her own doll stand. For adult collectors ages 14 and up. 

2014 W Club Doll- Victoire Roux Le Grande Seduction

We finally got a look at our first club doll for 2014: Victoire Roux Le Grande Seduction!  Collectors were thrilled to see the return of STORIES for the dolls and hope this continues into the other line reveals for this year. I love the color, the stunning jewelry, and find the dress design interesting but I am going to pass on this beauty.  The reveals of the new lines are coming and I am happy with the Montreal Victoire and the Victorious brunette from convention.

La Grande Seduction (The Great Seduction)

During Europe's darkest hours, Victoire Roux not only fought valiantly to save the lives of her compatriots, but as a patron of the arts, she also worked tirelessly to protect the magnificent cultural heritage of France. Swiftly salvaging and hiding world famous paintings by the likes of Van Gogh, Monet and many others from would be conquerors and other miscreants in an ultra secret hiding place, Victoire successfully saved these irreplaceable treasures from almost certain annihilation.
In order to maintain a shroud of secrecy, only a few key members of the French Resistance knew the exact location of the "ark of beauty" (as it became known). As the conflict finally neared the end and rumors of the ark's actual existence started circulating in the allied underground, the hope that beauty and art might have survived the ugliness of war immediately acted as a morale booster, leading everyone to fight harder for the freedom that they believed in.
Many subterfuges were used to explain the art's disappearance from galleries and museums during the occupation. From swiftly moving the pieces mere moments before a building's destruction to simply declaring them stolen in the aftermath of various skirmishes, miraculously, the enemy never came close to discovering any of the resistance's clever subterfuges.
Once the war ended, Victoire immediately revealed the location of the ark and a ceremony was held to return every single tableau to their rightful owners. Organized in collaboration with the Hotel de Ville de Paris, the restitution ceremony was a grand affair with the entire who's who of France and many allied dignitaries all present to honor the courage of Victoire Roux and her valiant friends from the resistance. This ceremony set an indelible mark on history- the moment the world officially acknowledged the heroics of Victoire Roux. All in attendance stood in awe at the prowess of her achievements. All were under her spell, utterly seduced by our hero's incredible determination and resolve. That night, Victoire Roux was the real star, easily outshining the great masters that she had fought so hard to preserve!
About your first W Club exclusive doll of 2014
Item # 76017
La Grande Seduction (The Great Seduction)
Victoire Roux™ Dressed Doll
2014 W Club Exclusive
Limited Edition Size:  TBA 
Special W Club Suggested Retail Price: $115.00
Estimated Shipping Date: Approximately Late Summer 2014
Doll Tech Specs:
Scale: 12-inch / 1:6 
Head Sculpt: Victoire Roux
Body Sculpt: Integrity / Victoire Roux
Skin Tone: FR White
Hair: Deep Brunette
Quick Switch Feature: No
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-Applied
La Grande Seduction Victoire Roux™ is a 12-inch fully articulated vinyl doll with deep brunette rooted hair perfectly styled in a sophisticated chignon. Our glamorous hero is ready to be in the spotlight along side the great dignitaries of her time dressed in an intricately layered azure cocktail gown, which features an over sized bow detail at the waist and a contrasting black lace accent at the hem. A pair of long "pleather" gloves, an elegant jewelry set and shoes completes her flawless appearance. A doll stand is included. For adult collectors ages 14 and up.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

MIA Collectibles...Documenting your Collection

I think every serious collector has done it at some point...misplace something from your collection. Often it is one of your favorite things too that you are sure that you put "some place special"!  Clearly it was so special that you you have out-foxed your future self.  It can really make you doubt your sanity the longer it takes you to find it..assuming that you do find it. You start to wonder if it even existed at all? Did you sell it? Was it stolen? Did the movers leave it behind? Etc...nightmare...etc...

I moved to my current apartment in August of 2013. It took a month to get around to unpacking the dolls as I added some new shelves for my ever expanding Integrity Toy collection. I would slowly do a couple of boxes when I could and had to be clever about stashing the boxes in a closet, under beds, and in the storage room in our new basement. So for awhile, I assumed I just had not come across the boxes that had my DC Stars custom Joker and Lex Luther. I also noticed that my Poison Ivy Women of Power version was missing too. I wondered if I had sold her? Maybe?

I did not really start to worry until Christmas when I had clearly been through all the boxes that I could see and nada.  So I kept myself from going nutty by convincing myself that they must be in one of the boxes at the bottom of the pile in the storage unit.  During the baby's nap on Wednesday, I rigged up the video monitor and headed down to the basement for battle but was devastated to find nothing.  Crap! Maybe they really did get left behind?

So then Friday, I was moving things around in my sewing/guest room so the Roomba could do its business and noticed the HUGE box from the Tonner Sydney Masquerade doll slipped in at the side of my desk between a book shelf...wait? Where did that come from? Sure enough, the three dolls where in there along with my beloved Wonder Woman/Diana of Themyscira! I did not even realize that one was missing!

It was a bit like Christmas but also reminded me that I really need to get a list started and maintain it. The list should document all the dolls that I currently own or are on pre-order, the price I paid, date acquired or expected to acquire, where I bought it, and location (On shelf? In storage? At the doll hospital? Etc...).  The list would also document when something leaves the collection: sold/traded/donated, price, to where, etc...  The list can be helpful in figuring it what to charge when selling and also bring your collecting habit into greater focus..i.e. "I spent how much on GIJoe collectible plates last year?" You get the point.

This would also prevent doubles. I am sure we have all bought something twice..not remembering that we already have it. This is super easy to do with lipstick, yarn, comics, and doll outfits. You could have this list on your phone or print up a hard copy to take with you to conventions. You might also add a section for "Wanted" items and include the original retail price and whatever the current Ebay or internet selling price is...that way you don't overpay while at a convention for something you could get for less online.

Lastly and likely most importantly, this list is exactly what you need, along with some photos, to get your collection insured. This was brought up on the W Club recently that most homeowner or renter insurance only covers collections up to a certain point. Otherwise you need to get some extra insurance to cover it. This applies to fancy jewelery sometimes or even things like a handbag collection. The point is...think about the things in your house that you love...and then think about how much it would cost to replace! Besides, it could be both fun and therapeutic to go through your stuff to document.   Then once the list is complete, maintaining it should be much easier to keep up if you enter the things as acquired. There are also some apps to help with this and at least one online collecting community...cllctin? For yarn there is ravelry. I wonder if ether is one for makeup and sewing patterns?

Happy Spring Cleaning!


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Tonner Convention- Lady Action Lunch Open Registration

Tonner has opened up the Lady Action event to everyone.  They have also dropped that the special souvenir outfit for Lady Action is for Wonder Woman!!!  Weeeee!  I wonder what it will be? I would love one of her soldier outfits like this one...if it is just another version of her regular wonder undies...I will be miffed unless it is a retro version with the shorts or skirt and the lace up sandals.

So if you aren't one of the regular convention attendees, you can now just sign up for the breakout event for the crazy price of $60!  That gets you food, a chance at door prizes, the lecture/program part of the event, and whatever random table favor they cook up.  You will then be able to purchase a Lady Action doll and the souvenir Wonder Woman fashion for her.  If I had to guess, the outfit will be anywhere from $60-$99) and Lady Action will be around $149-199.  Once I found out the price to attend, I opted to hunt down a proxy instead.  Convention goers can attend the breakout event for $99 and the outfit is included so clearly that is a way better deal.

Lady Action has a facebook page fyi...

Initially I was lukewarm on Lady Action....BUT if they decide to be true to the spirit of Lady and Captain Action, then it would mean getting a bunch of superhero OUTFITS which would be awesome!.  I do love the Tyler 2.0 sculpt as well.  So if they made like a basic Lady Action in different haircolors or a wig version, then they released outfit versions of different characters...I would be very pleased.  Same for Captain Action!

-Join us for a LADY ACTION Launch Party
at the Tonner Collectors Convention - 

British Superspy Lady Action - spun out of the nostalgic Captain Action comic book series with adventures all her own - takes TonnerCon by storm, along with special guest Ed Catto!

In 1966, Captain Action leapt into action as the original super hero action figure that had the ability to change into other superheroes, including Superman, Batman, Captain America, etc.  This was accomplished by DC and Marvel character costumes to fit Captain Action sold separately.  The character was the latest concept from toy and idea man Stan Weston, who just two years before had helped Hasbro create the G.I. Joe line. Weston had been the first to propose the idea of an articulated figure in the form of a soldier. From there, Hasbro's Don Levine and his team brought to market America's movable fighting man, and the first modern action figure for boys.

So, too, is Lady Action a woman of the times with the ability to become other superheroes via costumes.  Witness the transformation for yourselves at this Action-packed luncheon, with the incomparable guest speaker Ed Catto of Captain Action Enterprises. 
The fee is for the meal event only; however, a special LE Lady Action Character Figure, and also a Wonder Woman outfit for Lady Action will be available for purchase at the event.  The time for Action is near!
Entry to this event also includes entry to the 
Tonner/Wilde Salesroom.

You need not be attending the Tonner Convention to register for the Launch Party.  Come one, come all!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Tonner 2014 Mainline Release

Well...yeah.  So that happened today.

Use the code MAINLINE14 to get 10% off and free shipping until 4/9.

Absolutely nothing for me here.  Frankly I don't get why they do releases and offer discounts with expiration dates when more than half of the dolls don't have images!  Unreal.  They want us to pre-order sight unseen? Not likely.

Lots of little girl dolls including more Patsy and Patsyette on the Tiny Betsy body and a new line called Half-Pint. Half-Pint is a modern cutesy whereas Patsy is retro cutesy.

I could care less about Big Bang Theory but I would love to get Sheldon's outfit at some point.  The sculpt looks good actually and I like that they used the teen body for Amy.  We have to wait to see the sculpt for Amy (unless you saw the forbidden photos from Toy Fair).  I also noticed it said "first edition" for Sheldon so I wonder if there will be a "second edition" like maybe an Comic-Con exclusive version with an alternative shirt and bonus accessories?  It would make sense and likely be a popular exclusive for SDCC.

They are making a Twilight Reneesme using the WI Patience body.  So she can wear those clothes but they are mostly ridiculous.  I wonder why they didn't use the Marley body?

The DC Stars line will get Adam West Batman and Julie Newmar Catwoman.  This is cool but I will be passing on these..though it gives me hope for a Linda Carter Wonder Woman!

There are some gorgeous new American Models this round for those of you with TONS of SPACE and MONEY.    Also some new Cami & Jon dolls which are cute enough...but I am waiting for more Tulabelle in the upcoming Integrity Spring Release.  Also more Tiny Kitty.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Late to the Jem Party? You can still get in on the fun!

A variety of prices here...some less than retail!  It is not too late to get almost ALL of the characters.  Your trickiest fins will by Synergy, Astral, and the Countess (but I imagine once released there will be a window where she will be available for a decent price...).


Raya and Jetta:


GnG Rio:



Custom Jem Outfits/Accessories for Integrity and more!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Wilde Virtual Factory Sale- A Bumpy Ride

After a frustratingly long day of error messages, the virtual sale is finally a go.  There was a collective grumble heard round the doll world when the shopping cart system crashed and much groaning on the internets.  But it seems like these virtual sales are destined to crash when you have that man people hitting a site all at once.

I missed out on two things that I wanted:  the Rufus Totally Natural outfit and the creepy franken-rufus which I wanted solely for the outfit and boots...(hopefully I can get those loose from someone).  I was able to get the leopard cardy, the striped cardy, the black frills tank top, and the other rufus totally casual outfit.  I thought the boutique pieces would work nicely for Tulabelle.  The Rufus outfit is a great deal and I love the pieces.  I was tempted by the black parasol but I realized that it does not close.  I can likely get one that actually closes if I wait for hobby lobby to put out the christmas stuff again (which knowing hobby lobby is like in a week or so).  I have seen parasol ornaments before and for less than $13 dollars.  I would love to get one for the steampunk couple.

Sale ends on Tuesday...

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Doll Musings: Lottery Success and Jem Accessory Sets

So I am happy to report that I got both the Night Strike and the Red Strike ITBE dolls! Woot.  Go me. hat sort of takes the sting out of losing the Montaigne Market Elise doll.

Also, my Jem and Misfits accessory sets arrived! These are really fantastic!  The jackets are gorgeous and the instrument cases are fantastic.  Pictures coming...


Monday, March 17, 2014

Doll Musings: Know when to hold em and when to fold em...

Well poop.  I did not get picked for the Montaigne Market Elise lottery.  le sigh.  At least the Jem dolls arrived to distract me.  Then Integrity released picks for the next wave of ITBE girls.  This round of dolls is exclusive to W club members.  I threw my hat in for Janay and Monogram.  The forums were all excited about the AA Vanessa and AA Kyori as well.  Both cool but I had to stick with the two I liked the best. I am a sucker for platinum hair!

My Jem and Misfits accessory packs should arriving any day now.  I am hoping I will be able to pick up one more of each jacket for the bands loose or on ebay.  I also anticipate the announcement of another Jem soon.  Integrity dropped hints about a Jem with long curly hair seen in the Raya promo shots.  Speculation abounds as to what she will wear...I am hoping for a flipside fashion set.  The curly hair could mean Rock and Curl Jem...but I am hoping for something more exciting.  The mention the song Who is She Anyway? which is a Misfits song from the episodes Broadway Magic and The Fan.  Jem wears a purple dress in the video...but I hope this is not what we are getting.  The hint also mentions that the box is really big.  I am hoping that this means a giftset and/or a playset.  The popular opinion is a Synergy computer to put together.

Then of course we are fast approaching the spring Integrity line release...if there is more of the Urban Safari look as seen on the upgrade Vanessa and MM Elise...then I might be in trouble.  I might try to get some of the line to keep the fashions and sell off the dolls nude.  We shall see.

Meanwhile there is still Tonner.  I am still not going to the convention as of now.  The breakout events are for Lady Action (souvenir is an outfit...I assume I will be able to pick it up after the convention on and for Carmen Dell Orifice fashion doll.  It is a fashion event hosted by Tyler, so one assumes that they might actually have a Tyler companion doll or something.  I am interested in the Carmen doll but I prefer to wait and see her before buying.  I have not seen more details about the actual included events and what the souvenirs may be.  One assumes a Deja Vu doll (maybe as the ultra basic) and then something on an Antoinette body as the convention doll.  After the Cami-Palooza of last year, I have my money on Daphne, Lana, or Glinda as the convention doll sculpt.  Maybe we should start a pool.  I have not seen anything on the competition categories or workshops yet.  But then again, since I am not going I am not on the lists for these things.  I have mixed feelings about not going...I am sure I will be moping around the whole weekend on the convention, but not laying out all that cash and then stressing about selling off the stuff I don't like (which usually is the bulk of it)...and also not being run ragged by the salesroom hours will be a nice change.  I have ended up being really sick during and after almost every hopefully I can dodge that bullet this year.  

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Astral and Jetta

Picked up my dolls from Gigi's Dolls today...and I have had the chance to debox two of them. So far I am super pleased with them.  Jetta's heels are a sparkle black vinyl...very cool.  The Jetta sculpt is great. She has a bit of an Agnes vibe to her with a more square jaw. If I can get my hands on another one on sale, I would love to reroot her with silver steaks.
Astrale's hair is gorgeous and get makeup is really nice. I can barely tell that this is a reused sculpt. 

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Yo, meet Baby Joe!

He is my little sack of sugar.  8lbs 14oz...21 inches.

Evening in Montreal Victoire Roux is Perfection!

Totally in love with this doll.  She is gorgeous in every way.  I am particularly in love with the color of her hair as it works with the champagne fur shrug and the chocolate cocktail dress.  She is going to make a fantastic hat model.  I am contemplating making a similarly styled dress for the Workshop Victorious Victoire doll from the 2013 Convention.  They both have similar hair styles in opposite maybe a silver dress with a black shrug?  Then I would have a warm and cool version.

My best craft project ever: Baby Joseph Dante!

Photo Card
View the entire collection of cards.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Knitting: Sailor's Delight Socks

Just finished these. The yarn is the self striping sock yarn from Knit Picks knit on size 1 kollage needles using the Sailors Delight pattern from the 2-at-a-time socks book by Melissa Morgan-Oakes.  I am pleased with the results. These match the little baby legwarmers I already made for baby sir. 

Now I am starting on another pair from the same book. Here's to plowing through the yarn stash!  I even frogged two half done socks that weren't working to try again. It helps that I am now on maternity leave and also dreadfully sick with a cold and pretty much unable to get off the lots of time for knitting.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

My first box from Citrus Lane

I am pretty chuffed. The first box arrived today...only a few days from my due date..and after a horrible day at work. Inside was a sunny yellow tissue wrapping and some great goodies.  There is a cute bodysuit in size 3/6 months, juice beauty hand cream, a boon silicone feeder, and a story board book with an owl on it!  So the feeder seems neat...i guess you put mushy fruit or veggie pulp in it and it will ooze out holes while the baby holds it in his mouth.  I bet some cold mushy fruit pulp in there might be nice for teething babies too.  The board book is cute and goes nicely with my owl theme nursery. Bodysuits are totally useful and the print is really adorable on this one from the Tea Collection.  And I love the Juice Beauty line already...and hand cream is totally needed with all the constant washing I will be doing.  Plus some coupon codes for discounts from some of these same brands...all in all..nice stuff and I am pleased.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Knitting: a wee Katniss cowl

So since seeing Hunger Games Catching Fire...I became obsessed with the Katniss Cowl (like the rest of the knitting world). I also bought a Tonner Katniss doll in order to make tiny versions of the film fashions for myself and to sell. I worked up a bunch of patterns based on the film clothes and plan to sew them up this week.

I am planning a cowl for me and thought I would test out some theories with a mini version  for Tonner Katniss instead. I have made three now and I think I have it down for the doll size.  For human sizes I think I will use a combo of crochet and knitting with a focus on the herringbone stitch and and using some short rows for shaping...maybe even a cable to mimic some of the textures.  I tried both for the doll and decided to stick with crochet for the whole thing.   I used a size D hook with knit picks palette fingering weight yarn in silver. And the cowl part is a drawstring cord core with the yarn crocheted around it.  

Now onto the leather hunting jacket. I have not decided if I will make the pants and t-shirt to sell as well. It seems like a lot of collectors would already have similar pants and a fact the original Tonner Katniss outfit pants and shirt would work for to complete the outfit.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Ipsy...another Birchbox makeup sampler thingy to treat yourself....

So I got Birchbox and so far it has been fun.  I have had two boxes now and I am not disappointed.  The last two boxes have not had much makeup in them though...and I was sort of hoping that these little treats would keep me from going crazy on ulta or sephora on a regular basis.   My sister had just signed up for Ipsy and I decided to try that service as well.

It seems like Ipsy is more makeup driven while birchbox seems more about luxury hair and skin products.  I like that the Ipsy surprises come with a little makeup bag too....definitely a nice bonus.  So expect a review at some time in the future.

Chicago Knitting Magazine Kickstarter!

This sounds like an awesome idea....

Integrity 2014 Event Doll: Victoire Roux Evening in Montreal!

We got a sneak peak at this gorgeous doll at convention and most of us have been waiting with baited breathe.  She is finally here!  A lottery doll (which of course I entered) and with an edition size of 600, fingers crossed that I get her.  I love platinum hair girls and I think she will be an amazing hat model for my little millinery creations.  I am also wild about the combo of the platinum hair and the chocolate dress...just stunning.

Item # 76009
Evening in Montreal
Victoire Roux™ Dressed Doll
IT Direct Exclusive
Limited Edition of 600 Dolls
Estimate Ship Date: Approximately the Third Week of February 2014 
Suggest Retail Price: US $99.00 + Shipping and Handling*
*(+ applicable sales tax for Maryland residents only).

Doll Tech Specs:

Body Type: IT/Victoire
Head Sculpt: Victoire Roux™
Quick Switch Feature: No
Skin Tone: FR White
Hair Color: Platinum
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-applied

"Evening in Montreal" Victoire Roux™ is a fully articulated 12-inch vinyl doll with a stunning bright platinum rooted updo hairstyle, topped with a newly designed gilded hair bow ornament covered in faux-diamonds. This edition of the ever so chic retro fashionista is sumptuously dressed in a sassy tulle overlayed cocoa cocktail dress, jazzed up by little fur bolero and matching elbow length chocolate pleather gloves.  Always a girl with the perfect finishing touches, Miss Victoire's look is completed by intricate gold earrings and matching gold patent open-toe pumps. A doll stand is also included. Recommended for adult collectors ages 14 and up only.

Integrity 2014 Reveal: Dynamite Girls Love Revolution

Man...adorable abounds in the new DG collection.  Integrity really knocked this one out of the park.  First, the boys are great AND they kicked up the edition size to 750 so more people were able to get their hands on them...but it seems like they have still sold out even with the larger size. The prices have gone up but I still could not resist Auden with his Gaultier sailor vibe.  I think he will go nicely with my Baby It's You Chip doll with his brunette pompadour hair!!!

Tooka was the surprise runaway hit of the bunch and darn near impossible to find now.  That owl dress is the cutest and her hair is fabulous.  I think its fun to see R&D Susie in the mix and I am in love with that red leather jacket.  She will be a R&D/IT Direct Exclusive and available for pre-order from IT soon.  I have not been collecting the DG Girls since I have been focusing on the Jem dolls (and their different size body) as well as the newer FR girls and the latest body update for them as well.  If they could share clothes and shoes easily....I would most certainly be in trouble.