Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Garden Maintenance

Besides American Girl dolls, one of my passions is gardening. Whether it's indoors or out. I really love plants, trying to understand them and most importantly, making them grow. I'm lucky enough to have some boxes which I'm able to garden in freely and I have really taken to enjoying them. I thought I'd share some pictures of my herb garden box, and also what I've learned in the two seasons that I've been able to enjoy it's bounty.

It must have been late spring 2007 when I planted my herb box. I had been keeping an herb garden in pots and I had noticed that as the season progressed the herbs weren't doing as nicely as I had hoped. I knew that it was much better to put them in the ground and let come back stronger and better the next year.

The layout for the garden was simple enough. The box was square and I wanted the garden to look tidy so I planted 9 herbs. Three rows of three containing: 3 types of Lavender, A silver leafed and also lemon Thyme, a Spearmint, Sage, Oregano and creeping Rosemary. This year they all returned and I decided that I had enough room to increase the number of herbs to 13 with three new Rosemary Plants and one new Lemon Verbena.

The biggest change I've contemplated with the herb box is removing the Spearmint entirely and relocating it to its own container. I was readying the beds for winter, doing a little last minute trimming and weeding and discovered that the spearmint had sort of secretly taken over the herb box with its web of underground roots.

Luckily I think I got to the problem in time, and was able to remove most of the excessive root growth before it started to harm the root systems of the other plants. But now that I know this little booger grows with underground roots, I don't want the same problem to happen again next year. Which leaves the new problem of where to put this lovable pest? I'll let you know how that goes, but for now you can see how nicely the herb garden has filled in this year and also just how invasive the underground roots can be!

This box filled in so nicely, but it really is time for a trim, you can see how the thyme is starting to cascade over the edge of the box, but you can also see it's woody growth, not very attractive.

Nothing is more pestilent than underground roots, because you think you've got them all and them wham bam there's waaay more for you to pick. Look at how the roots just moved right over and tried to snuff out my beloved lavender (which I like more than Spearmint by the way).

Sunday, October 11, 2009

It's been a day.

Well, you might recall my excitement for a certain white bodied American Girl Molly, MINT in box, I might add. Well it turns out, sadly I was outbid in the last of seconds and did not win.

I should explain my eBay strategy. As soon as I find an item that I want, if it doesn't have a Buy It Now option I watch it in my Watched Items page, and patiently wait until the time comes to win it. Everything had gone as planned and the auction, which in this case was 7 days long, finally came its end. I just watch right up until the very last minutes of the auction. Truly the last 25 seconds. It is then that I put in my bid, and win (usually) the item. Sadly such was not the case this time.

This particular plan of attack leaves the bidder vulnerable for a few seconds at the very end of the auction. If someone else bids, and it's higher than yours... well it's almost impossible to rebound and win the item. This was exactly the case with me. As soon as I put in my bid, I was outbid. I scurried desperately trying to get in a higher bid, but it was already too late. And for a meager 5 dollars my coveted, beloved, white body Molly was gone.

The shock has yet to cease. At work I angrily shake the sanding sugar onto the blueberry muffins and still I search the pages of eBay hoping that maybe the winning buyer will pull out, or not pay up and she will become available once more. Sadly my searches have been in vain and I will eventually have to come to terms with the fact the Molly is gone.

Until the next White Body in Mint Condition with all of her original packaging comes up, I will sit and wait patiently and know that next time I won't be outbid

Saturday, October 10, 2009


Because of the rarity of some of the items I collect, it would be very difficult for me to have gotten them without eBay! Daily perusals are best if you have something that you really want, and finally it seems like a real gem has popped up

Enter the world of white body American Girls. The first ones, the best ones, from 1986 to 1990 before they released Felicity and had to change the body color because of her low cut gowns.

Anyway it seems like there is a NRFB MIB WB Molly McIntyre. Translation New In Box, Mint In Box, White Body Molly. Whenever I see the letters NRFB my mind travels to a memory where Dexter from Dexters Laboratory has mistakenly placed himself at a Doll Convention rather than the Star Trek convention he was aiming for. Anyone who has seen this episode knows what I'm talking about. It was a great representation of the crazy world of doll collecting!

Back to Molly, this one is all original, braids still shucked off at the ends and not dry. The earlier maroon box with the paper ribbon. Even the book holder to hold the book is there. No silver eye and it looks like the only thing missing would be the piece of tissue that originally hid the doll from the anxious recipient. Soon to be mine.. Hopefully!

This Molly was a 7 day listing, which wasn't fun because when you see something you really want, you have to wait 7 days to get a chance to win it. Finally though the seven days have dwindled down to mere hours and soon the battle of the bidders will commence. There has been little activity with this auction and I feel like the price will drastically go up in the last minute of the auction. However there is still hope, and I will keep you posted! Wish me well, and don't try to outbid me!

Thursday, October 8, 2009


It's no secret that I love the American Girls Collection, so I thought I'd put on my best Martha character and make this video to showcase the archived character Samantha Parkington, and the soon to be archived Kirsten Larson's school story. Plus there's a few little tid bits of information you might be interested to know.

p.s. Don't make fun of my editing skills, I don't claim to be a pro :-)

also, it has been very difficult for me to upload, this video, it has finally worked but the video quality isn't what I had hoped it would be, I'll keep trying to get a better version of this up

Saturday, October 3, 2009

A Homeless American Girl?

It seems that one of the American Girl dolls has been creating quite a stir lately. Meet Gwen Thompson one of the side characters to Chrissa, the girl of the year 2009.

The Chrissa character was released with a special focus on "bullying" In the books Chrissa and her friends are constantly the objects of bullying by the other girls at school. But Chrissa manages to persevere and, much like the title of her book, stand strong.

It seems however that Gwen has fallen on hard times and is forced to live with her mother out of a car. Some seem to think the story is too real for children. Others think that the cost of the doll is too outrageous in itself.

I think that the American Girls Collection does the best it can to expose some facets of real life, in an age appropriate manner for its customers. It's true that the dolls have always been expensive. It's also true that if taken care of, these dolls will last for years to come. As a child who was lucky enough to get: Samantha, Molly and Kirsten, it would be impossible for me to put a value on the countless hours of play and adventuring that came with them.

Introducing a "homeless" character in the form of Gwen will introduce the idea of homelessness to young children in a much more understanding light. Especially with Chrissa's focus on anti bullying it's interesting to see that one of her friends would be in such a compromising situation. A situation that has no effect on the status of Chrissa's friendship with Gwen, it seems like in the American Girl world friends are there for you, no matter what. Wait, isn't that how it's supposed to be?