156th Anniversary of the Battle of Athens

I live in Iowa and therefore experience virtually no Civil War-related local history. However, on August 5th and 6th of 1861 the one and only battle along the Iowa border took place, the Battle of Athens. Athens is a town in Missouri right across the river from Iowa. It was also the northern most battle…

Meet Sarah!

Meet Addy’s best friend, Sarah Moore! Ever since I got Addy, I knew I wanted her to have her best friend Sarah. Sarah is such an important character in Addy’s books. She is the first person Addy meets in Philadelphia and becomes her most loyal friend. Sarah is patient, kind, encouraging, and always wears a…

American Girl Benefit Sale 2017

This past weekend I attended the Madison Children’s Museum Benefit Sale for the third year. We had a blast, as always! We had 8:00 tickets, which was the absolute perfect time for us. We had to leave the house at 3:00 am, so really we don’t want any earlier than that! We also got in…

Kirsten Visits Swedesburg

I recently took Kirsten to visit Swedesburg, a small town that was originally founded by Swedish immigrants, not far from where I grew up. I remember visiting as a little girl at the height of my infatuation with Kirsten (and therefore all things that related to Sweden or pioneers), but I decided it was time…

Behind the Scenes: How I Created a Setting for Josefina

One of my favorite facets of doll collecting and photographing is creating scenes for my dolls, particularly ones that convey a specific location or time in history. Some are definitely easier than others: Molly’s bedroom, for example, is easy to set up because I have her big Pleasant Company Scenes and Settings book as well…

Meet Clara!

Recently my mom made a very special addition to her collection: a custom doll she created to be Clara, Josefina’s sister! She bought a very TLC Josefina on eBay and re-wigged her with a Marie-Grace wig she had removed from another doll during a customization project. I think she looks just like the book illustrations!…

Addy Observes Memorial Day

Today Addy helped me observe Memorial Day. The origins of Memorial Day go back to Addy’s time, when people decorated the graves of soldiers killed in the Civil War. Before it was called Memorial Day, it was called Decoration Day. Many sources estimate the number of soldiers killed in the Civil War to be around…

Kit Finds a Story

“It’s so rainy and gloomy outside,” sighed Kit. “I really wanted to write a newspaper today, but I don’t have any stories. What I am I supposed to write about, the awful weather?” “We’ll think of something!” said Ruthie cheerfully as she handed Kit her notebook. “We just need to be creative.” “Ok,” agreed Kit…

Happy Easter from Melody! 

Happy Easter! Melody is enjoying the perfect spring morning with an egg hunt.  Yay, a pink one!  The flowers everywhere are my favorite part of spring. I think Melody agrees!  I spy an egg…. I made this dress for my sister for her birthday this week (21st birthday, whoohoo!) using the Liberty Jane Aline Dress…

Ivy’s Sundress

Julie and Ivy look so sweet in their sundresses in this illustration in “Julie Saves the Eagles”. Poor Ivy has such a small collection provided for her from American Girl, so I am always looking for fun outfits I can sew for her. I decided this fun and summery sundress from the illustration would be…

Emily’s Recital

In Emily’s book Brave Emily she and her classmates learn to play the flutophone, and then perform them at a class recital. Through a series of mishaps, Emily ends up having to play a solo. As a music teacher, I really love that this book’s subject is school music, but I will say that I am…

Rebecca vs. Daylight Savings Time

Rebecca yawned as she read her script. She was so tired. She had stayed up late last night practicing, and still wanted to make sure everything was perfect before dress rehearsal this evening. She yawned again and shut her eyes. She had time for just a quick nap…. A while later, Rebecca bolted up and…