Sunday, December 28

This week in the Civil War: Dec. 28, 1864

Fighting at Fort Fisher in North Carolina

On Dec. 24, 1864, a Union amphibious expedition under the command of Maj. Gen. Benjamin Butler began shelling Fort Fisher, a Southern fortification defending Wilmington, North Carolina. The Northern objective: to shut down one of the last major seaports of the Confederacy still open in the South. But attempts by an infantry division that disembarked to probe the fort's stout defenses met with resistance and a Federal attack withered once Confederate reinforcements approached. Amid deteriorating weather conditions, Butler called off the expedition in late December 1864. A dispatch by The Associated Press dated Dec. 28, 1864, quoted reports as saying the fort was "much damaged" by the engagement with "all the barracks and storehouses burned" though Union forces failed to seize it. The dispatch noted that Northern infantry troops actually had gotten close enough to capture a rebel flag from the outer defense works before withdrawing.

Saturday, December 27

A hazy shade of winter

Oh. My. Goodness.

An American Girl representative announced today on Facebook that there will be a new African American BeForever doll in 2016!!!

First, the new American Girl store opening in Scottsdale this summer, and now, a new AA companion!

How is a Vinyl-American AA girl supposed to wait?!

Thursday, December 25

There was a little girl

There was a little girl, 
            Who had a little curl, 
Right in the middle of her forehead. 
            When she was good, 
            She was very good indeed, 
But when she was bad she was horrid.

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

That's what it's all about

Linus "Sure, Charlie Brown, I can tell you what Christmas is all about."

(Moves toward the center of the stage)

Linus: "Lights, please."
(a spotlight shines on Linus)

Linus: "And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, 'Fear not: for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.' And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.'" 

(Linus picks up his blanket and walks back towards Charlie Brown.)

Linus: "That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown."

A Charlie Brown Christmas

Sunday, December 21

This week in the Civil War: Dec. 21, 1864

Union occupation of Savannah, Georgia

Union forces led by Maj. Gen. William Sherman reached Savannah near the Georgia coast in December 1864, and the news spread quickly throughout Northern newspapers this week 150 years ago in the Civil War. "Savannah Occupied by Gen. Sherman" read one headline on a dispatch from The Associated Press dated Dec. 25, 1864. It said Sherman had recently taken 800 prisoners, guns and ammunition. And in a famous line remembered long after, Sherman wrote President Abraham Lincoln: "I beg to present to you as a Christmas gift the city of Savannah, with one hundred and fifty guns and plenty of ammunition, also about twenty-five thousands bales of cotton." AP dispatches said Confederate ironclad vessels were blown up and the navy yard burned at Savannah. The dispatch said the city of some 20,000 was quiet, and one officer called it an "almost bloodless victory."

Sunday, December 14

This Week in the Civil War: Dec. 14, 1864

Fighting in Nashville, Tennessee

Union forces smashed into a sizable Confederate force in the Battle of Nashville on Dec. 15-16, 1864. The fighting 150 years ago during the Civil War came as a Confederate army led by Gen. John Bell Hood sought to make a last attempt to drive Union forces from the region. Fighting raged until nightfall on Dec. 15, 1864. The next day, fighting seethed along a hastily erected Confederate line before federal forces overran the Confederate positions. The Southern army, driven off, was forced into retreat toward Mississippi with Union forces in pursuit.

Thursday, December 11

2-4-6-8, Who do you appreciate?

Who's excited for Phoenix Comicon's Fan Fest this weekend?

I am!!!

Why? To see The Doctors, of course.

Colin Baker is best known for playing the Sixth Doctor on "Doctor Who" from 1984-1986, beginning with the episode "The Caves of Androzani" where he regenerated from the Fifth Doctor. While he portrayed the Doctor for three seasons on television, Baker also appeared as the Sixth Doctor in Doctor Who audio plays, the stage production "Doctor Who: The Ultimate Adventure," and the Children in Need sketch "Dimensions in Time."

In 1996, Paul McGann became the Eighth Doctor for the television film "Doctor Who." The film was produced by the BBC, Universal Studios and Fox. If successful, McGann would continue as the Eighth Doctor in a television series. The series was not picked up, but he continued to play the Eighth Doctor in a series of audio plays, and his image was used on Doctor Who novels. For the 50th anniversary of "Doctor Who," McGann was seen regenerating into the War Doctor on the mini-episode "The Night of the Doctor."

Who do you want to see there?

Wednesday, December 10

Let it sew! Let it sew! Let it sew!

Look at what Grandmomma gave Me and Momma as an early Christmas present!

The essential tool for style makers of any era. Sized perfectly for historic 18" dolls. 
Sewing Table and Stool are crafted with outstanding quality in wood, authentically painted and sized for 18" dolls. 
Table features working drawers for storage and an elasticized treadle to simulate pumping. All pieces sized to fit 18" dolls. 
Machine measures 12.25"L X 6"W X 12.25"H. Adorable accessory set included too! 
Exclusively made by The Queen's Treasures®, offering the highest quality 18" Doll Furniture, 18" Doll Clothes, 18" Doll Shoes & 18" Doll Accessories! 
© 2014 The Queen's Treasures ®. All Rights Reserved. Not affiliated with American Girl®, Reg. Trademark of American Girl, LLC.

Tuesday, December 9

We're just a couple of Misfits

Oh my.

Tonight is the 50th broadcast year of "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" on CBS.

50 years.


The television special was based upon Johnny Marks' 1949 song "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" which was itself based upon the 1939 poem "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" written by Marks' brother-in-law, Robert L. May.

Momma was nearly five months old when Rudolph aired on television for the very first time on Dec. 6,1964. (Yes, Momma is older than Rudolph!)

While she doesn't remember that first airing, she also doesn't remember a time when watching Rudolph, "A Charlie Brown Christmas," or "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" wasn't a holiday ritual.

Back in her day (before videotapes, DVDs, or cable) children anxiously watched to see when those favorite holiday specials would be on - because there was one chance and one chance only to see it.

If you missed it, well, there was always next year.


You know where to find me tonight.

Sunday, December 7

A visit from St. Addie

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that Steampunk Addie St. Nicholas soon would be there;

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter's nap,

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

"Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On Cupid! On, Donder and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

His eyes -- how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night."

This week in the Civil War: Dec. 7, 1864

Sherman's forces reach Savannah, Georgia

This month 150 years ago in the Civil War, the Union army led by Maj. Gen. William Sherman neared the major port city of Savannah, Georgia. Sherman's soldiers, after capturing Atlanta in a decisive Union victory earlier in the year, had spent weeks crossing Georgia while destroying farms and property in their path. The arrival of the Union forces at Savannah in December 1864 would culminate a chapter of the war known since as the "March to the Sea." Once Savannah was taken, the Union troops would eventually move on in early 1865 into South Carolina in the culminating months of the war.

Thursday, December 4

Simply charming

Check out the Charming Chatelaine Momma made for me this week!

If your doll is as well read as Me, she'll want to keep her favorite books close to her heart. Momma created this chatelaine from 12 mini (non-functional!) book charms, attached to an antique brass chain with an antique lobster-claw clasp.

My chatelaine consists of:

  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Jack and the Beanstalk
  • Jane Eyre
  • King Arthur
  • Little Red Riding Hood
  • Little Women
  • Peter Pan
  • Pride and Prejudice
  • Robin Hood
  • Romeo and Juliet
  • Snow White
  • Wuthering Heights

(Momma creates these in our smoke-free, but not pet-free, home.)

Wednesday, December 3

The fortnight before Christmas

Momma's working at both JoAnn's AND Toys"R"Us which leaves Precious Little Time for Me, but she was in a sentimental mood when she returned home the other night.

While putting items away at Toys"R"Us she discovered a reprint of a classic book she hadn't seen or thought of in 45 years or so: Little Golden Book's The Night Before Christmas.

This 1949 Little Golden Book edition of the famous poem, The Night Before Christmas, was a staple in the Golden Book line for many years. (The first 12 Little Golden Book titles were published on Oct. 1, 1942.)

Momma remembers that edition clearly and is thrilled to share that with us. 

Tuesday, December 2

What are little girls made of, made of?

What Folks Are Made Of?

What are little babies made of, made of?
What are little babies made of?
Diapers and crumbs and sucking their thumbs;
That's what little babies are made of.

What are little boys made of, made of?
What are little boys made of?
Snips and snails and puppy-dog tails;
That's what little boys are made of.

What are little girls made of, made of?
What are little girls made of?
Sugar and spice and everything nice;
That's what little girls are made of.

What are young men made of, made of?
What are young men made of?
Sighs and leers and crocodile tears;
That's what young men are made of.

What are young women made of, made of?
What are young women made of?
Rings and jings and other fine things;
That's what young women are made of.

What are our sailors made of, made of?
What are our sailors made of?
Pitch and tar, pig-tail and scar;
That's what our sailors are made of.

What are our soldiers made of, made of?
What are our soldiers made of?
Pipeclay and drill, the foeman to kill;
That's what our soldiers are made of.

What are our nurses made of, made of?
What are our nurses made of?
Bushes and thorns and old cow's horns;
That's what our nurses are made of.

What are our fathers made of, made of?
What are our fathers made of?
Pipes and smoke and collars choke;
That's what our fathers are made of.

What are our mothers made of, made of?
What are our mothers made of?
Ribbons and laces and sweet pretty faces;
That's what our mothers are made of.

What are old men made of, made of?
What are old men made of?
Slippers that flop and a bald-headed top;
That's what old men are made of.

What are old women made of, made of?
What are old women made of?
Reels, and jeels, and old spinning wheels;
That's what old women are made of.

What are all folks made of, made of?
What are all folks made of?
Fighting a spot and loving a lot,
That's what all folks are made of.

Sugar & Spice

Not my gumdrop buttons!