Saturday, February 28

Keene books

Momma and I not usually fans of updated covers for classic books, but We make an exception for these new Nancy Drew book covers.
A special treat for Nancy Drew fans, and any reader who's new to the series! We're releasing a stunning new edition of an old favorite: The Secret of the Old Clock, the first book in the incredibly popular, long-running series. It's the same exciting mystery that readers have fallen in love with for more than 80 years—Nancy Drew has to help Mr. Crowly's friends find his missing will, before the evil Topham family steals his full inheritance. Now with a brand-new look, this is an edition that collectors won't want to miss!

My favorites so far? The Secret of the Old Clock #1 (of course!), The Secret of Shadow Ranch #5 (Arizona!) and the upcoming re-release of Nancy's Mysterious Letter #8.

What do you think of these new covers?

Friday, February 27

Set phasers on 'Weep'

What can I say about the death of my beloved Leonard Nimoy: 1931-2015.

"I have been, and always shall be, your friend.... Live long and prosper." 

"Of my friend I can only say this: of all the souls that I met on my travels, his was the most … human."

RIP Spock. Please give my regards to Bones, Scotty, Christine, and Gene.

Sunday, February 22

This week in the Civil War: Feb. 22, 1865

Another blow to the Confederacy: Fall of Wilmington, North Carolina

The Union army, in its latest blow to the Confederacy, captured Wilmington, North Carolina, this week 150 years ago in the Civil War. The federal victory meant President Abraham Lincoln's troops had shut down the last major East Coast port of the Confederacy — and a critical route for supplies to the Southern army. The fighting that led to the fall of Wilmington began in mid-February of 1865 as Union forces confronted Confederates defending Fort Fisher. Union gunboats pounded the fort and Confederates ultimately had to pull out the night of Feb. 18, 1865, and early the following day as Union forces marched toward the rear of the fort. Between Feb. 21 and 22 of that year, federal forces put up relentless pressure as the fighting forced the Confederacy to remove its forces and retreat from Wilmington.

Friday, February 20

Rock Me Amadeus

I. Am. Outraged.

Outraged, I say.

Why? Grandmomma neglected to tell Us about next week's steampunk version of Mozart's opera, The Magic Flute.

Certainly, Arizona Opera's snake poster didn't alert us to this Wondrous Event.

Honestly, a steampunk version of one of Momma's very favorite operas and no one told us?!

The Magic Flute is an opera in two acts by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart which premiered on Sept. 30, 1791 at Schikaneder's theatre in Vienna.

Full of magical melodies and fantastic creatures, Mozart's beloved tale follows Prince Tamino and bird-catcher Papageno on an adventure to rescue Princess Pamina. As they face unexpected trials and challenges on their journey, audiences will marvel as the genius and imagination of the composer unfolds before their eyes. 
Arizona Opera captivates audiences with a new and innovative production of The Magic Flute, created by Metropolitan Opera stage director, Daniel Rigazzi. Set inside the world of Tamino's imagination, the scenic design is filled with allusions to dreams and the idea of nature vs science. Surrealist imagery, inspired by the paintings of Rene Magritte with a nod to Victorian-era "Steampunk" style take the audience to an exciting place where imagination and reality blend together in Mozart's masterpiece.
The perfect opera for families, Mozart's The Magic Flute is full of magical melodies, dreamlike characters and mythical woodland creatures.
Sung in German with English supertitles.
Running time: 2 hours and 56 minutes including one 30 minute intermission

Thursday, February 19

Happy ewe year!

Happy Chinese New Year!

This animal sign, which comes once every dozen years, can be said to have an identity crisis. Known variably as the Year of the Goat, Sheep or Ram, the sign's confusion stems from its Chinese character, "yang," which broadly describes any of the ruminating mammals, with or without horns.

Many Chinese prefer to translate it as the "Year of the Sheep" because sheep are more cute and cuddly. The goat, however, is more likely to be the original meaning because it was a popular farm animal among Han Chinese who started the zodiac tradition.

People born in the yang year traditionally are believed to be filial, kind-hearted and artistic, while also timid, obstinate and consummate worriers.

The Chinese character "yang" is present in other characters with positive meanings, such as "beautiful," ''auspicious" and "goodness."

Sunday, February 15

Take a deep breath

The Dolls for a Cause auction is now open!

More than 20 wonderful outfits and items (including Momma's Macaron Rag Quilt) for 18" Vinyl Americans benefitting the Lung Cancer Alliance are now available on our Facebook page:

Go place a bid right now!

(Now. I'm waiting.)

I would love to hear what you think about the auction so please leave Me a comment here or email Me at

Happy bidding!

This week in the Civil War: Feb. 15, 1865

Sherman's march on the Carolinas: Columbia, South Carolina, burned

Union Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman's army advanced into Columbia, South Carolina, this week 150 years ago in the Civil War. The march into the Carolinas came after Sherman gained permission from Washington to move further to break the morale of the Confederacy after the capture of Atlanta and Savannah in neighboring Georgia in recent months. Tens of thousands of Union troops entered Columba, the state capital, on Feb. 17, 1865, and the mayor surrendered. Soon looting and fires broke out in the occupied city, and much of the downtown burned include a business district and residential area.

Saturday, February 14

Bah, love bug!

Captain Blackheart here, reporting for duty. I provide comfort to those who strongly dislike Valentine's Day.

Valentine's Day, also known as St. Valentine's Day or the Feast of St. Valentine, is a celebration observed on Feb. 14 each year. It is celebrated in many countries around the world, although it is not a public holiday in most of them.

St. Valentine's Day began as a liturgical celebration of one or more early Christian saints named Valeninus. Several martyrdom stories were invented for the various Valentines that belonged to February 14, and added to later martyrologies.

Today, St. Valentine's Day is an official feast day in the Anglican Communion, as well as in the Lutheran Church. The Eastern Orthodox Church also celebrates St. Valentine's Day, but on July 6 and July 30. In Brazil, the Dia de São Valentim is recognized on June 12.

The day was first associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished.

In Victorian England, it evolved into an occasion in which lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards known as "valentines." In Europe, St. Valentine's Keys are given to lovers "as a romantic symbol and an invitation to unlock the giver's heart", as well as to children, in order to ward off St. Valentine's Malady.

Valentine's Day symbols that are used today include the heart-shaped outline, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards.

Thursday, February 12

Breath taking

It's time for the next Dolls for a Cause auction! This auction, scheduled for Feb. 15-22, will benefit the Lung Cancer Alliance.

Momma and I are proud to showcase this week some of the fabulous items donated for the upcoming auction. Today's spotlight is donated by my buddy Dacia at Mini Me Dolly Divas at

A breath of fresh air…This dress looks and feels like a breath of fresh air. Made from a historic pattern by Keepers Dolly Duds yet it is timeless and will look breathtaking on your Modern or Historic dolls.  

This dress has two coordinating fabrics of aqua and pink roses with a lovely white floral trim. Seams are all finished to prevent fraying. The fabrics are all prewashed to prevent shrinkage. Dress is tea length and closes in the back with snaps, and ties in a bow. There is a pretty row of pink buttons down the back. White patent leather shoes with white roses are included. Shoes are Sophia brand.  Also include are white tights to make this a complete finished look. 

Happy bidding!

Wednesday, February 11

Yipes stripes!

It's time for the next Dolls for a Cause auction! This auction, scheduled for Feb. 15-22, will benefit the Lung Cancer Alliance.

Momma and I are proud to showcase this week some of the fabulous items donated for the upcoming auction. Today's spotlight is a Candy Striper Uniform made by 
Diva Kitty Dolls at

It is the Candy Striper uniform from McCall's 7031 made from red & white striped cotton with a white cotton pinafore & cap decorated with the Red Cross symbol. White leather-look t-strap shoes with flower cutout complete the ensemble.

Happy bidding!

Tuesday, February 10

A breath of Fresh Air

It's time for the next Dolls for a Cause auction! This auction, scheduled for Feb. 15-22, will benefit the Lung Cancer Alliance.

Momma and I are proud to showcase this week some of the fabulous items donated for the upcoming auction. Today's spotlight is a dress made by Erin of Cupcake Cutie Pie.

Fresh Air - This lovely sleeveless dress is made of a beautiful dragonfly and butterfly print with pretty pink flowers on a field of mint green cotton. The fully lined bodice is sleeveless and features a pink fussy cut fabric flower at the waist. The skirt is cut on the bias for a lovely drape and hemmed with pink piping. The dress fastens in back with buttons. For an easy hairstyle, a headband in matching cotton is included, simply tie in a knot and go. Mint green flower punch sandals are included.

Happy bidding!

Monday, February 9

Sweet dreams are made of macarons

Hooray! It's time for the next Dolls for a Cause auction! This auction, scheduled for Feb. 15-22, will benefit the Lung Cancer Alliance.

Momma and I are proud to showcase this week some of the fabulous items donated for the upcoming auction. Today's spotlight is Momma's Macaron Rag Quilt!

Greta Garb-oh!

Sweet Dreams are made of Macarons: American Girl of the Year 2015 Grace Thomas learns about the delight of French macarons when she goes to Paris. Grace dreams of starting her own French patisserie, including colorful macarons, when she returns to the United States. Help Grace follow her dreams with her very own macaron rag quilt!

Made from three layers of 100 percent cotton flannel, this doll-sized rag quilt is approximately 15"x21". It has been clipped and washed twice, achieving the soft, chenille edges rag quilts are known for. It will come boxed in a coordinating Parisian-inspired box for storage or gift giving.

Stay tuned for more exciting donations!

Sunday, February 8

This week in the Civil War: Feb. 8,1865

Union raid on Confederate supply lines in Virginia

Union forces bidding to sever Confederate supply lines near Petersburg, Virginia, took the offensive against Confederate rivals this month 150 years ago in the Civil War. Union Cavalry fanned out down the Boydton Plank Road on a mission to search out and destroy Confederate supply wagons. Other Union troops taking part in the fight found themselves pushed back by fierce Confederate resistance. The fighting that began on Feb. 5, 1865, dragged on for two more days. In the end, Confederate soldiers thwarted the Union raiders but federal fighters at the end of the battle had gained new ground in what was part of the larger Richmond-Petersburg campaign.

Sunday, February 1

This week in the Civil War: Feb. 1, 1865

Robert E. Lee made commander-in-chief of all Confederate forces, 13th Amendment proposal to abolish slavery passes U.S. House

Confederate Robert E. Lee was made commander-in-chief of all Confederate forces on Jan. 31, 1865, receiving the promotion even as the Southern war effort was faring badly. By early 1865, the secessionists were hard-pressed by the Union on several sides. In early February 1865, Union Gen. William T. Sherman's troops were beginning to enter the Carolinas after their destructive march across Georgia in late 1864. In other developments, The Associated Press reported that a group of "rebel peace commissioners" had apparently arrived inside Union lines in early February 1865. But their movements remained uncertain and there was no immediate report on their intent. The U.S. House of Representatives on Jan. 31, 1865, passed the 13th Amendment proposing to formally abolish slavery. President Abraham Lincoln, noting the measure had passed the senate in April 1864, submitted the proposed amendment to state legislatures for their consideration. It would obtain ratification by the required number of states by December 1865.