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Learn the ABC's with Little Darling Ana and her Dolltown friends!
Little Darlings at the Beach
Xennia and Tink. Rosa and Birdy
(Okay...backdating now that I have a laptop, with my photos available. Catch up on life in Dolltown!)
Lula and Pearl headed out to the Fall Tree early. Half dressed! They couldn't wait to meet up with the other girls!
We are coming with your shoes! Wait up!
And Lula can't stay. She is off to represent Dolltown at a community event. Shoes required!
All the girls dressed up for a Dolltown Halloween party...
Well, the party was lots of fun, but we didn't take photos that night. But the girls loved their outfits so much they asked for some individual shots.
We complied...Stay tuned.
In between Dolltown stories, the girls wait patiently for the action to start...
A glimpse into the inner workings of Dolltown itself.
It's the Little Darlings!
During my Hiya Dolly hiatus, the girls had the run of Dolltown. Of course they had their caregivers running after them, making sure they were safe and didn't eat too many caramels francais, or climb too high in the trees...
After a while, as the weather turned cool, several of the girls decided it was time to change and get ready for school. So, with a little help, they dug through the boxes and found the sweaters, shirts, and plaids. And they convinced even the reluctant, the hold outs (can anyone say Tink and Xennia?).
And when they were all dressed and ready they came to me and asked, in their polite way, for photos before they fill their lunch boxes with balogna sandwiches and settle in with their books, atlases, and math counters.
Now, that all sounds very...responsible. And I was understandably impressed!
But I noticed that, while the fall clothes were gathered, every possible Halloween outfit was also sorted into a neat pile, ready for action. And I overheard discussions of how I was to be convinced to buy them some orange tights...
(I can't remember ever wearing orange tights! Do you?)
Zoey, those glasses give you a studious air, I must say.
Here they are together! The Dolltown Little Darlings all dressed for fall and school!
(Two of our girls have gone international and continue their time in other countries.
Maggie is still with her doppelganger, Tasya, in London...where she shares a flat with a cat.
And Conner continues her internship with April in Detroit (and soon back to Paris),
where she attends Fashion Doll Stylist's Design School for Girls.)
Will we pull off a Dolltown Halloween event, after the girls begin their studies for the year?
(I have a policy of "No promises", even when appealed to by the appealing Little Darlings!)
Here's Zoey, with an art piece by Leonard George, in an acrylic painting style he calls "basketweave"...
We have taken a break!
For over two years, the inhabitants of Dolltown have led busy lives, recorded by me with help from Miley, Dolltown reporter...
Over the last six months my life has taken a turn, a positive turn, and the changes require more of my time to look after.
Just as I oversee Dolltown and the action here, I am involved in real time with real people, and record the action through photos and videos, posting them to social media: Facebook, Instagram, and websites.
In June, I retired and took on the Art Gallery position in our small town in Gold Country, BC.
I arrange monthly art exhibitions. My friends and I put on monthly Coffee Houses, and weekly Open Mic Nights. With friends and supporters, we create and carry out art classes, teas, receptions, and community events....
I am part of an exciting initiative called Route Blue, connecting rural communities through music and art. And besides Hiya Dolly (one of my "artistic" expressions) I created and maintain the Nicola Valley Arts Council website, and manage my own arts and music (etc) Facebook page, Bluebird Country.
After keeping up a way-too-busy pace, I stopped my Dolltown.News weekly newsletter and sent all my dolls off to their rooms and into the garden to amuse themselves. Or let the enthusiastic learners set up school classes with each other while I got busy with other things.
That's the nice thing about dolls... Very independent.
And while the Dolltowners managed their own lives, and looked out for one another, I got to spend evenings watching reruns of my first grandchild, born late July, 13,203 km (8,204 miles) away in Melbourne Australia. And chat with my youngest daughter about her Nuna Leaf chair, and her supportive Mom's group....
And now I am focused on getting ready for baby Jasper and his parents' month long stay in our tiny house, come December.
So, under my present circumstances, I am evaluating how I will continue with my Dolltown story reporting...
Stay tuned, but at a slower pace...
I can tell you the Little Darlings all got themselves dressed for fall when the weather turned chilly
and are clamoring for a photo shoot!
Mitch is watching out for Becky, his best friend.
Becky has been here forever. She's an original Dee an Cee from the 60's, and was brand new when she arrived in my life.
But a couple of years ago, when I was gathering friends for my vintages, all the others buddied up and Becky couldn't seem to find a friend of her own. She just tagged along with other bff's...
Until one day when I ran across this vintage boy in the Bailey House basement. I almost passed him by until I noticed how tall he stood, and what a babyface he had, just like Becky! And Becky was tickled pink when he came home. She wasn't expecting a boy friend, Well, none of us were!
expecting that for Becky.
But they are inseparable They act like an old married couple actually.
So maybe it's not too surprising how this story turns out!
In this story, Mitch and Becky are joined by a real Galoob BabyFace, from my children's toy trunk. She is so funny!
Well, it wasn't so funny when she knocked over the Eiffel Tower.
This is what I overheard as Mitch and Becky watched Babyface's antics...
I think the bff's think Babyface would benefit from a mature point of view.
And no one would argue that Becky and Mitch aren't responsible.
Adoption? Are you sure, kids? That's pretty serious!
And Babyface is a handful.
But don't let me stop you! I can use all the help I can get!
I'll get you her blanket for you.
And she likes Fruit Loops for, well, breakfast, lunch, and dinner...
What is Xennia doing here at the Eiffel Tower by herself?
Well, by herself with a bunch of trolls!
All the other Little Darlings are either beach ready, or getting changed.
Xennia is often a straggler. She lingers...
We depend on her buddy Tink to move her along.
But Tink gets distracted, and goes with the noisiest, happiest crowd.
And it was a noisy, happy crowd of Little Darlings that headed to the wardrobe room.
Meanwhile, Xennia noticed a quiet group of little, colorful haired trolls heading for the Eiffel Tower.
And we know Xennia likes little things...baby animals, babies, and I guess, little trolls!
Wow! Way to go Tink!
In case you missed it, Tink did four things...
1. She joined Xennia and enjoyed the trolls with her. That's smart!
2. She left and managed to scoop the Maggie and Kate froggy short set. That's amazing!
3. She also brought a bag big enough to bring back all the trolls! Who would think of that?
(Oh dear. What do we do with them now?)
4. And she tucked the tiniest trolls into Xennia's hair bow, and her own...
Xennia loves accessories! What is better than a tiny troll hair bauble!
Tink, you are the best!
Next time, don't leave without her in the first place! I'm just saying...
Okay it didn't come together afterwards as easily as we hoped...
The trolls scattered as soon as the bag was opened.
They are all over Dolltown as we speak.
We hope the big one has a troll call!
And Xennia ran around half undressed after them.
I had to go back to the Eiffel Tower to find her again.
And this time I just picked her up and brought her in and dressed her myself.
But I had to bribe her with chocolate.
The chocolate that Auntie Maryann brought me because I am a grandma of a real baby now.
I bet that baby isn't running around after trolls!
Xennia, Xennia, Xennia...lucky you're cute!
Now, can I get some work done, please!
And Xennia, if any trolls show up, you are NOT allowed to give them my chocolate.
Well, maybe one piece. But that's all!
Hey April! French chocolat!
The little knit dollies enjoyed their sleepover!
The neighbors across the street let the little dollies come for a fun night in Dolltown. Soon they will be packed up and travel to another country to bring comfort to the children there...
Our Little Darlings, Scout, Lula, and Evie, were allowed to bring them home And they showed them a movie, fed them some popcorn, and snuggled with them before they all fell asleep.
The next day the little knit dollies met some more of the girls at the beach.
Rosa and Birdie, Tink and Xennia came to meet them just before Lula had to take them back across the street.
Not only are the knit dollies traveling to other countries!
There are piles of handmade toques, like the blue one here, being packed in bags to go too.
And Evie brought a very cute baby hat to show us too.
A yellow hat with little ears, and matching booties!
The knit dollies and the baby hats are made by Diane Magnusson.
The toques are made by Andy Bisson, and his wife Joan packs them up ready to go.
We have to get everything back to our neighbors so they can be shipped out very soon.
The non profit organization Canadian Food for Children will be sure they get to their destinations...
Scout fell in love with the little knit dollies, and Dolltown decided to pitch in for the shipping for this charitable organization, in exchange for one of the dollies.
It will be a good reminder of the charity of good people in our neighborhood.
I know the girls will be inspired!
They might not knit, but we know Scout, Lula, and Evie are already making plans to take more of the food in our kitchen down to the foodbank.
Can you leave the Frosted Flakes, girls!
Reminding us to be graaaateful! For everything we have....
See those little trolls with Tink and Xennia? Now, that's another story!
Right across the street from Dolltown is a hive of charitable busyness! While chatting about a hornets nest terrorizing the neighborhood we discovered our neighbors have a hall full of hats!
Real Canadian toques! Mounds of them on their way to...two dozen countries!
And Andy, the man who ended up saving us all from the hornets, is the man who makes the toques. It's true!
A man of courage, talent, and generosity!
And I have discovered that Joan, his wife, manages the collection, packing, and distribution of piles of soft good for the poor, unhappy, and toque-less! A woman with a big heart, motivation, and organizational skills. And she is tech savvy at 70 years old!
Scout overheard me talking about the neighbors and the project they are busy with. And she convinced me to take her, and her buddies, Lula and Evie, to see these good deed neighbors.
And the Gang of Three made a delightful discovery...
Piles of toques! Scout is impressed!
These toques are traveling over the mountains where they will be packaged up to go to needy people.
But we see something in the bag behind Scout!
Lula and Evie catch up to Scout and they all marvel at the toques made by their neighbor!
But, who is peeking from the bag behind the girls?
That's not a toque!
Little knit dollies!
Look at them! Knit dolls with toques! And is that a knit bunny?
The girls want to play with them... How will they do that?
The girls make a plan.
And it involves Lula climbing up to the top of the bag the knit dollies are in!
Of course it does!
Evie gets ready to hoist her up...
There you go, Lula!
I think the knit dollies are excited!
Lula falls in...and helps Evie up.
Scout, stay where you are!
The girls toss the knit dollies down to Scout.
Wow! Scout is smitten with these little dolls!
And Evie finds a knit bunny!
As Lula finds more knit dollies to drop down, Scout gathers them on her lap.
And Evie jumps down with the blue bunny!
What has Lula found now?
Not sure what to call this knit creature but she brings it down to her friends!
All the knit creatures are happy to spend a little time with the girls!
But wait! There's more!
The girls notice another bag full of knitted creatures.
Oh my goodness.
I better think fast or Joan's hall will be filled with creatures on the loose...
Okay girls! I have an idea!
Wouldn't the purple bunny we see up there like a friend to travel with?
That makes sense to the girls!
How will they get the bunny up there?
Evie, and Scout hoist the bunny up...then it hops!
And when I remind the girls what the dollies and creatures are for,
Lula puts one of the knit dollies back.
Blue bunny and the purple bunny look very happy! Friends!
Way to go, girls!
Then the girls get stubborn.
They still want to play!
Come on! We can't sit in the hall all day!
We just came to see toques heading out on their way around the world!
Neighbor Joan pops a little knit basket in front of the girls and tells them they can take their new friends home....on a sleepover.
She says the girls can take as many as will fit in the basket!
The girls don't want to put any more knit dollies back!
How are they going to get them all in the basket?
But two to go!
Well, we know the knit dollies don't mind squishing into small spaces together!
And Evie ties the last dolly on to the side of the basket...
Good job, Evie! How creative!
Lula and Scout say goodbye to the other knit dollies in the bag...
They pose for a last photo with the toques and toys.
Saying...Way to go, Uncle Andy and Auntie Joan!
Now the girls want to go back to Dolltown and show their friends.
They'll get to tell the story of the good deeds happening right across the street from Dolltown!
And they ask me to carry their basket home for them.
Be careful! they say to me. Don't drop our knit dollies!
The bunny buddies say goodbye.
And as the girls leave...
...more dolls show up!
These dolls must have heard there was something going on!
Looks like Joan and Andy have their own little Dolltown, and we didn't even know!
And our girls missed these dolls...
Should I tell them?
Would my dolls start running across the street to play with the neighbor dolls?
Hmmm. I don't know! I'll have to think about it!
What I do know is we had a wonderful morning!
Our Dolltown trio of good deeders found themselves in a world of fun.
Who knew we had such charitable acts going on right in our neighborhood!
Well, it's actually not uncommon in our little town. But we didn't know piles of toques were being created right across the street!
Here is the knitting wheel that Andy uses to make his toques.
And the little knit creatures are made by the dozen, by Diane Magnussen... Love them, Diane!
Joan and Andy Bisson collect the items and drive them over the mountains to Penticton. And from there the packages are shipped to many countries.
Joan and Andy are volunteers for the Canadian Food for Children Okanagan Division.
The CFFC is a Non-Governmental Organization working to relieve the suffering of the poor in over two dozen deveoping countries worldwide.
Way to go, Joan and Andy! And Diane!
Thanks from all of us!
Now how easy is it going to be to get the little knit dollies back to the neighbors,
after a sleepover in Dolltown? Will our girls let them go? They have to!
(Uh oh! I have had experiences with "sleepovers"!)
Best not to even show Tink and Xennia! Now how do I do that!
I'll get back to you...
Well, isn't that something! We have had Silent Sam in Dolltown for over two years and we have never seen under his cape. It's funny how some dolls just seem dressed already.
No costume changes!
Recently however, we did a little research and realized Silent Sam was probably meant to be a female doll. We looked up the origins...
Sam has always been a guy doll to us. Even after we discovered he had a baby.
I mean we get a say in this, right?
We got curious, though, about what was under Sam's cape. And less than an hour into the visit with our new doll, Sam peacocked his cape right up over his head. (Or her head.)
He kind of looks like a guy, with short pink arms.
Stunning beads, Sam!
But we noticed the beads on one beaded foot are coming unravelled...
Uh oh...now what?
Look on the left there! You can see Sam's baby on his back!
The small blue roll! Does that mean it's a boy?
Is "Blue for boys, pink for girls." an African thing, Togo?
We decided to call mama "Togo" and her baby "Lome"
We think they came from the country of Togo, and Lome is a city there...
Okay, I'm going to leave them to get to know each other.
I think I can hear action back at our Eiffel Tower!
Our Silent Sam has been in Dolltown for a long time and is beloved by the other Dolltowners.
He carries a baby on his back! (But only a few Dolltowners have noticed. The baby is as quiet as Sam is!)
Now, it seems, Sam has a new friend! A friend with a baby too!
Who is the new friend? A very pretty doll all the way from the continent of Africa! How did she get here?
We are waiting to hear the story of her travels. All we know so far is...
Our daughter Lani's bff lives in Africa, her mother lives here in BC and Lani's bff's mother showed up on our porch with our new African mama doll.
Then she left. Wait! Tell us the story!
You can read our story that HINTS that a new friend might happen.
And two years later we are very glad it has happened!
Here she is! So beautiful! And her little baby!
Sam can't believe it! He thought he might get a new friend.
But not a beautiful mama with a little buddy for his baby too!
He welcomes them to Dolltown.
And shows them the baby he carries on his back.
(Pardon the photos. We are on our shady porch.)
Sam's new friend lets him hold her baby...
This is a promising start!
We are very happy for our Silent Sam.
He has kept everyone in Dolltown company.
Now he has his own company!
What shall we call our new Dolltowners...mama and baby?
Chantal arrived in Dolltown first. But Douglas and his brother Chris were here soon after.
And right from the beginning Douglas and Chantal formed a bond. Douglas lives in a world of his own, even when he is with the other kids. He has his own absorbing interests, like planes, ships, history, and building models. He's kind of brilliant.
And Chantal, our little songstress understands him. She is often lost in her own musical world! And she is very gentle and kind, even when others become a little impatient with him.
They spend time in libraries and the music room. Douglas admires Chantal's piano skills, and hums along when she plays, while he cuts balsam wood into shapes, and glues the shapes into models.
So, it's not surprising, with their friendly history, that they chum together on outings, like to see le tour eiffel, built by the children. We posted the photos of their visit, with Faith and Geoff, earlier.
But I snapped more photos after Geoff and Faith left.
And I'd like to know what you think! They seem very...fond!
We are used to a little hand holding.
And a little "I'm still taller than you." (That could go on for years!)
But...aren't you two standing a little close?
Isn't it a little hard to talk like that?
Miley! Say something quick!
Douglas and Chantal almost look they are going to...kiss! Stop it!
I do NOT need dolls acting older than their ages.
And especially these two innocents.
Somebody call them to go play...please! Hello?
Fine. I'll do it myself...Douglas, back to your boy basket.
Chantal, go change for the beach. Sheesh! Disaster averted.
And this was one pair I thought I could leave alone....
Hal, this is so nice of you!
Bringing the little girls to see the Eiffel Tower all done...
Lilac Moon, Gabby, and Vera think the Tower is so pretty!
They wanted to help with the coloring. So I gave them coloring sheets. And lots of crayons.
And asked Vikka to keep guard so if they approached the tower-in-progress with crayons in hand, they could be...re-directed.
They heard that Lula climbed to the top of the tower so keep an eye on them, Hal!
Nice work, Hal! It's almost like you put a spell on them!
From the way Hal is looking around, I am thinking he was hoping Miley would still be here!
Relax, Hal. It's Dolltown! You'll run into her again sooner or later.
In the meantime, I think I heard the Disney Princesses asking for you earlier...
Everybody likes Hal!
Love these girls!
A little Linda McCall, Tonner Patsy, and Berdine Creedy Lolly Pop.
Our Vera, Gabby, and Lilac Moon...
They are wearing the oh-so-reasonable Prairie Moon dresses.
I took them into the garden just when the sun was setting...
Vera, Gabby, Lilac Moon...
They are ready for their visit to the Eiffel Tower.
Hal said he would take them!
Now, is he going back to see if Miley is still there?
Jiyoon shows us around the local Art Gallery.
Here is a framed painting of the heritage Courthouse Arts Gallery nearby Dolltown. Close enough for the girls to walk to, if I would let them out in the alley by themselves.
So they have to wait until I pop them in my tote for a little company while I do my shifts as Art Gallery Director.
Today it was Jiyoon's turn. I think Jiyoon was hoping to do a little painting while she was there. Not today, Jiyoon!
You wander around while I do a little filing...
Art isn't all fun and games, you know!
That's true, Jiyoon!
Did you like the art show?
It's time to go. Let's check for clouds...
The Dolltowners welcome a new member of our family, a real baby, Jasper! Born down under...
Okay, Boneka! Just one glass...
And fruit smoothies for the children!
Where's the Vitamix?
Little Darlings Birdy and Rosa! And Jiyoon!
Birdy heard that Miley was enjoying all the boys joining the Little Darlings to see the Eiffel Tower. She heard that Miley was watching all the hook ups, listening to the conversations, and was giggling with Floora about the flower Badger gave Scout...and the looks Chantal and Douglas were giving each other.
So Birdy decided she would bring their favorite babysitter Hal. Hal is a very handsome doll. And Birdy thinks maybe Floora and Hal might...like each other.
So Birdy, Rosa, and friend Jiyoon stay for a few minutes and then they leave Hal there to chat with Miley.
Way to go Birdy! This we have to see!
Wow! Who knew Hal was such a talker!
We thought he was the strong silent type.
He is such a great listener with the children!
Although it is hard to get a word in edgewise with girls like Tink and Gabby around.
Speaking of Gabby, Hal had to leave to look after her and her friends.
But it looked like he was enjoying himself with Miley!
Good thinking Birdy!
And look at Miley! She is looking positively flustered.
This little visit started quietly enough!
Will came to see the completed Eiffel Tower model. And he chatted with Miley.
Then the boys Uley and Bobby arrived to check out the Tower.
Xennia breezed in, climbing up to kiss and hug Miley, and Tink joined her.
But the affection didn't stop there!
Will was subjected to hugs, and the boys were surrounded...
Awww, so cute.
It's hard to know if Uley and Bobby liked the attention or not. But they did leave with the girls.
And Xennia "took care" of Bobby, who has trouble standing and walking on his own.
She maneuvered him right out of the scene!
Uhhh, thanks Xennia! See you Tink! Have fun boys!
I wonder where they are going!
Miley and Will are left after the whirlwind that is Tink and Xennia.
But Will decides to follow the kids and see what they get up to!
Good luck, Will! Keep an eye on them, eh?
Now, here's a trio we can trust will not climb under the Tower, or climb to the top!
Zoey and Pearl bring Chris to see the completed model. Chris was there at the beginning of the building of the Tower,
He helped get a sturdy base built, so the rest of the model building was successful.
And Chris may have been in on the decision not to use glitter until the Tower was built.
Here Zoey and Pearl tell him the story of the rest of the building, and he inspects the work.
"Well done!", he says to the girls.
Your approval and kind words mean a lot to us.
It makes us want to get you some shorts for the hot summer weather!
(He's wearing corduroy pants!)
Hey Miley! Who's coming now?
Miley couldn't wait to come to the garden and watch the goings on as the Little Darlings bring their boy buddies to see the completed Eiffel Tower.
She brought her friend Floora, our Ballet Doll. And they chat...about shy Faith, Lula and Owen climbing the Tower, and Badger bringing Scout a flower.
They also gossip about a few scenes we didn't show, like Chantal and Douglas getting affectionate. (What?)
And Floora got down to do some floor exercises (of course!) before more Little Darlings arrive with their boy friends.
Oh, here they come!
Who is it, Miley?
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Hiya Dolly Stories
Meaningful, educational, or just for fun stories!
Check out my other sites (None of which get as much attention, at the moment, as Hiya Dolly.):
Inspire Us Kids ...for ideas, stories, links, and resources to inspire kids, or about inspired kids
Best Learning Strategies ...for the best strategies for learning at all ages, from general to specific
Meme Dreams ...for random good ideas that I have run across, or people, links, resources
AND check out sites I have set up for amazing friends:
Suzy Q's Quilts ...astonishing quilter and storyteller
Mischelle's Place ...a gifted life juggler (of people and experience and talents)
Jacalyn DeWolf ...an extraordinarily giving human and writer
I can't tell you yet the web address of my writer/partner's new website...he's still writing in notebooks and telling his stories to the air (catch them! quick! I'm trying I'm trying) I wish, at least, he'd record his cooking processes and recipes. At least...
And keep an eye out for future links to:
Daphne's, my gardener visionary friend and colleague
Keirstyn's, with her mission to find the kindest, cleanest, greenest products in the world
Carol's, who may be too busy learning bass guitar and performing in her retirement, to bother with a site about it all
Tasya's, my oldest daughter, immersed in learning still, and soon to share it (And her hilarious cat Lhasa)
Go to Lani's Adventures, my venturous photographer daughter's website of her first trip to Australia and Tasmania
Check out Sol's channel on You Tube, for my son's antics on his Limber, and his YT video favs
(I have dolls who choose to emulate several of these people, knowing they will amuse me. My dolls are good to me)
AND I love my subscribers. Really. I love you.