Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Wintry Wednesday

It's another snowy day in West Michigan. We've been stuck in quite the winter weather pattern for most of 2013. It's unbelievable that we are still below average snowfall for the season, since we just get wave after wave of new snow. It's like we're living in a snow globe. I guess having virtually no snow in December got us majorly behind.

There's plenty of snow out there now. We got several inches of heavy, wet snow on top of what was already there last night/this morning, which caused lots of 2-hour-delays for area schools. The roads are very sloppy, according to Mom. It would be good snow for making snowmen and snow forts in, but it's awfully deep for us dolls. Maybe I'll still be able to convince my sisters to venture outside later. 

Speaking of snowmen and snow forts, are some fun snow creations I just had to share. I hope they brighten your day!

Monday, February 25, 2013


Let's take a closer look at Saige Copeland, Girl of the Year 2013, shall we?

Saige doll, meet outfit, and book: $110

American girl describes Saige as having "bright turquoise eyes and long auburn hair." She also has freckles and pierced ears. Pretty doll, I'd say, though when I heard the doll was going to be from New Mexico, I was kind of hoping for more of a Mexican-American look (dark hair, dark eyes, and medium skin). Maybe AG thought this'd be too much like Josephina? I think Saige's indigo meet outfit is very cute. I love the turquoise ring and the geometric belt. I wish the outfit was sold separately from Saige so that we could add it to our collective AG wardrobe. Oh well.

I'm not a huge fan of her name. Spelled like it is, it seems less like "sage" as in the herb or as in a wise person and more like somebody with too much time on their hands took the name "Paige" and started rhyming. I've always thought the name "Paige" is lame. Who'd want to be named after an errand boy or a sheet of paper?  At any rate, "Saige" is a billion times better than "McKenna" *shudders*. I have a few choice words for whoever started the Ma/Mac/Mc + Whatever naming fad for girls. Like: What. Were. You. Thinking? 

The clock's a-ticking, McFelicity. Save your first name rants for your own post, why don't you?

Will do, Malily.

Anyway, when I first saw Saige's picture, I was surprised at how much she looked like me. Here are 2 photos from that compare a clone of me to Saige and to Nicki, GOTY 2007.

Felicity clone and Saige
As you can see, we do share a strong resemblance but are nowhere near identical. My hair is a slightly different shade of reddish-brown, I have those little pin curls by my face, my eyes are green, and my face is freckle-free. You can't tell from this photo, but when my hair is down, it's not nearly as curly/wavy as Saige's, either.

Felicity clone, Saige, and Nicki
Saige looks similar to Nicki as well, but their hair colors are quite noticeably different. Nicki also has a side part instead of a center part and blue eyes rather than turquoise.

Saige's Accessories: $28
I think these are all cute items! It'd be fun to mix and match them with Saige's various outfits. However, I don't think earrings in general are the greatest idea for AG dolls: talk about hair snags waiting to happen, and with us hair doesn't grow back. I bet young girls would have trouble keeping track of such small pieces too. The asking price for this seems rather aggressive to me, but the reviews on the AG website agree that they're good quality, at least.

Parade Outfit: $54 with hats, $34 without
Of all Saige's outfits, this is by far my favorite. The hat and helmet jack up the price of this outfit, but it's also sold without them. I like the helmet more than the hat, though I wouldn't really want either at these prices. The jeans, boots, and patterned shirt are awesome! Maybe I can get Mom to ask for them for her birthday.

Sparkle Dress: $30
This is outfit is okay, but it doesn't really speak to me. I like the length and fullness of the skirt, the gold sparkles, and the defined waist. I don't really like the asymmetric neckline or how the pattern of the sparkles up top is different from the pattern of sparkles on the bottom - they don't even try to make the two patterns flow together. It makes sense for a girl from the southwest to pair this dress with the cowboy boots, but I'm not a big fan of them. And even though I know mixing metallics is all the rage, it looks off to me to add a silver necklace to this ensemble.

Pajamas: $24
I like the color palette of this outfit - unusual but fun. The only thing I'd change would be to do away with the ruffles on the cuffs and neck of the shirt. I think they look out of place on casual sleepwear.

Sweater Outfit: $34
This one definitely gets the thumbs-down from me. The tank underneath is okay, but the rest... ugh. Unless you're in an English riding competition, pants don't need to be that tight. I'm aware that hermetically sealed pants are "in" right now, but I think it's one of those looks we're going to look back on in a few years and mock like crazy. The sandals: rather blah. The gladiator look will never be for me. And finally, I've got to be honest about the elephant in the room here: the sweater. I think it's atrocious in both print and cut. There's something almost violent about it. Seriously, I may have nightmares about this sweater chasing me down and eating me tonight. 

Picasso, Saige's fleabitten gray horse: $132 with tack, $94 without
I think it's cool that AG went the extra mile to make this horse a fleabitten gray with off-white mane and tail. From a far-away look at the Saige book cover, I was expecting a solid "white" horse (that's light gray to horse people). The moveable head and foreleg are also neat, though I wonder if having one non-weight-bearing leg would make him more prone to tipping over. The price is... yikes. AG is selling the palomino and chestnut non-poseable horses for $75 each - that includes their tack. Does adding posable joints, swapping simpler English tack for the flashier Western, and throwing in a scarf, clicker, and tiny "horse treats" bag justify a $57 increase in price? AG apparently thinks so.

For the record, Mom is not drooling over Picasso the way she was over the chestnut horse. He would look out-of-place next to our quartet of non-posable beauties. Talk about a big relief! (A 5th horse would be fine, but a 5th doll to go with him? No way, Mom. No way.)

Hot Air Balloon Set: $150
I think it would be great fun to fly in a hot air balloon, so I like the idea of this set in theory. I think it's rather impractical, though. How often would it really get used? And it would take up a ton of space even with the balloon part deflated. I like the accessories, especially the binoculars, bag, and camera. Too bad they aren't sold separately (though even if they were, they'd probably be $28 or something ridiculous like that.) 

Painting Set: $48
It'd love to have that easel and the painting supplies! I think Saige's paintings and drawings are gorgeous. My favorite is the one on the easel of Picasso. However, I wish this set included some blank canvases and/or a blank sketchbook. If you want to inspire creativity in girls, why only include already-finished pieces of artwork?

Rembrant the Border Collie: $24
Aww. What a cutie. Border collies are such elegant, athletic dogs. I'm not sure I could handle the typical intense, high energy border collie personality, though. The Rembrant in the Saige books probably had a ranch to run around in to keep him busy. =) The only negative thing reviewers have to say about Rembrant is that his leash is permanently attached to him. That could get annoying for him, poor guy. For $24, you'd think AG could afford to invest in a leash clip of some sort...

This concludes our review of Saige and her accessories. We hope you enjoyed it! Time for us to go to bed. MacBeth over and out. =^)

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Wow, I never thought I'd be the one posting today. Valentine's Day isn't a holiday I get excited about. It doesn't get us out of school, and if you don't have a "significant other,"it seems rather pointless. At least it's a good excuse to eat candy. My personal favorites are those heart-shaped Reese's. Yum!

It's also an excuse to post some cutesy photos!

First, I challenged my sisters to find me the cutest Valentine's Day stuffed animal photo they could. Here are the entries:
Bethany's pick
Julie's pick

Lily's pick

My pick
Cute, indeed. Don't they just make you want to hug something? Now to put you into cuteness overload, enjoy these 14 heart-themed photos for the in honor of February the 14th:















The end!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Dream On

All of this cold and snow makes a vacation someplace warm sound wonderful. Felicity and I were lucky enough to go on vacation with Mom to Florida many Februarys ago, and it sure was fun. But think beyond Caribbean cruises, Orlando, and Hawaii.  If you could go on an all-expenses-paid vacation anywhere in the world at any time of year, where would you choose to go? I asked my sisters this question this week. Here's what they told me.

Bethany: Australia and New Zealand. You might as well get your money's worth by going pretty much as far from the U.S. as you can get, plus it's warm, has beaches, and people speak English with awesome accents. In Australia, I'd want to see all the cool wildlife, like brumbies, koalas, dingos, wombats, and walabees. In New Zealand, I'd feel like I was in Lord of the Rings, so that would be awesome. I'd also want to go snorkeling by a reef (and hope no sting rays or sharks showed up!).

Felicity: Alaska! It looks breathtaking from photos, and I've always wanted to see the Northern Lights. I'd like to go hiking, kayaking, whale-watching, dog sledding, and take at least one nail-biting flight in a tiny plane to scope out wildlife from the air. Obviously, I wouldn't want to go to Alaska right now, in the dead of winter. I'd want to wait for it to warm up some.

Lily: I would choose to take a trip to the Ireland! Even though I'm proud to first and foremost be an American, I do have Irish roots as an O'Malley. Ireland looks so lush, old, and magical. I would love to visit a real castle, ride through the beautiful country on horseback, and glimpse some wild Connemara ponies.

Me (Julie): My choice would be to take a vacation to the western U.S. to see mountains, mustangs, big open spaces, and starry skies. I'm most interested in visiting Montana, Wyoming, Utah, and Nevada, though I'm sure many of the other western states are beautiful too. Yeah, it's not a super exotic choice, but there's so much to see right here in America - I don't have a strong desire to venture off elsewhere. It would be fun to visit some of the national parks, though what appeals to me most would be to stay on a ranch where I could explore open country from horseback. I'd plan to take my vacation in spring or fall to avoid scorching temperatures and gobs of tourists. 

So, how about we visit...

Australia and New Zealand in winter,
Alaska in spring,
Ireland in summer,
and the western U.S. in fall?

Sure sounds good to me! Now if only we had a vacation genie to grant us our vacation wishes...