Thursday, August 28, 2014

Sparkle Girlz Clothes

After reading about the new Sparkle Girlz fashions on several blogs, I went to Walmart in search of cute cheap clothing for my teen dolls.  Someone had already cleared out all of the single $1.97 fashions, but there were still some Fashion Boutique packs left.  I picked up 3 of them for $8.88 each, and the ones that I purchased are pictured below.

Several Sparkle Girlz dolls were on display, both full-sized and mini.  I was almost tempted to purchase a doll.  Almost.  The Sparkle Girlz even have a cute little inexpensive car now.  I did not get a photo of that, but I did take a quick photo of some of the dolls below.

When I got home, I opened one of the packs and tried the clothes on some of my dolls, and the dolls are modeling the clothing in the photo below.  The dolls are from left to right:  HSM Sharpay, Juku Couture Kana, Calista on Super Model Bel body, Hispanic everGirl, and Flavas Kiyoni Brown.  Most of the clothes are too big for Kana, but she fits the outfit below really well.  Sharpay, Kana, and Calista can all put the Sparkle Girlz shoes on, but Sharpay can not stand in them.  The shoes are really flimsy, though, so it would be easy to cut the heels to make the shoes fit Sharpay better.  These young ladies are ready to head back to school in style!

I also got a little something for Ken.  He will have to model his some other time.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Revealing It All

Nervousness.  That's what Palmer was feeling at that moment as he sat on the couch with Zalika.  He asked himself how he could be nervous in this moment, when he can be so calm and cool when speaking in front of thousands of people.  He put his hand in is pocket where he was keeping the ring that he had purchased for her.  He wanted to ask her right now.  He wanted to skip everything else and just ask her, but he knew that was an emotional response, and he was determined that he would act rationally, as always.

Palmer had known that he wanted to be President one day from a young age.  His father and his uncle (who had been a politician) encouraged him, led him, and gave him advice.  They always stressed to him to think rationally, even when faced with circumstances that would normally elicit a very emotional reaction.  They advised him not to act out in anger, not to ever cry, and not to even express too much joy.  They said that others would see strong emotional reactions as a sign of weakness.  So Palmer had learned from an early age how to compartmentalize his emotions.  He dealt with situations very calmly and rationally, and dealt with the emotional elements later.  Even when Palmer's father had died when Palmer was a young man, Palmer never once cried.  He took care of all of the arrangements, and others commented on how strong he was.  Palmer felt that the most fitting tribute that he could give to his father was to not cry over his death.

So he would have this conversation with Zalika very calmly and very rationally.  He would tell her what to realistically expect going into a relationship with him, and would also give her worse case scenarios.  The time for showing emotions would come late.  And Zalika knew him.  She had seen him angry, sad, and extremely happy.  He felt that he didn't have to hide any part of who he was from her.

Zalika said "So let's get this over with."  Zalika launched into telling Palmer personal details from her past, and Palmer calmly listened.

The things that she told him were mostly things that they had already discussed (in the form of Zalika telling him humorous stories).  There were a few surprises.  He didn't know about the photos that she had taken for a former boyfriend.
Palmer:  You need to tell me his name.
Zalika:  Why?
Palmer:  I need the name.
Zalika:  I haven't even talked to him in I don't know how many years!  I wouldn't even know any of his contact information.
Palmer:  I just need the name.  Trust me on this, okay?
Zalika [hesitantly]:  His name is Calvin...
Palmer:  Write it down for me, please.
Zalika did what Palmer asked.  She did trust Palmer, but the thought of handing him that information made her nervous.  Why did he need that, she wondered. 

Zalika sat quietly for a moment, trying to find the words for what she needed to tell him next.  Palmer said "There's more."  It was more of a statement than a question, but Zalika nodded her head rapidly, and then continued to sit in silence.  

Palmer calmly stated "I know that this is hard, and believe me I wish that we didn't have to have this conversation.  But the reality is, when I run for President, there will be individuals who will make it their mission to dig up dirt on you, and they will use that information to paint you in a negative light.  They will be ruthless in how they find their information.  Interviews with people from your past, school records, even medical records.  They may come up with a partial truth, and they will fill in the rest with lies.  And then you could find yourself in a situation where you can't even address the lie, because then you would have to acknowledge the small amount of truth.  And they will come up with horrendous headlines in order to sell papers or get hits on their sites.  If you've ever tried drugs, they will call you an addict.  If you've ever been treated for depression, they will call you mentally ill or crazy.  If you've ever terminated a pregnancy, they will call you..."  Palmer stopped, but Zalika filled in the blank by quietly saying "Babykiller" as she stared into Palmer's eyes.  He looked at her and said "They will call you that, and worse."

In that moment, Zalika knew that Palmer was already privy to information that no one was supposed to ever know about her, and he'd had that information before she'd had a chance to tell him.  Her eyes immediately welled up with tears.  Of course they had run a background check on her, why wouldn't they?  Palmer sometimes talked about the background checks that would routinely run  on others who came close to him, why not her?  Zalika began to cry. 

Palmer immediately put his arms around her and pulled her close.  He felt so helpless in that moment.  He would've done just about anything to wipe away her pain, so knowing that he was the cause was particularly difficult.  He told her "You know I would never have ordered a background check on you.  It's my's just what they do.  I trust you.  You've never lied to me"  He felt her nod her head.  He said "None of that stuff matters to me.  Nothing that you've said and nothing that they've said have changed my feelings for you.  You are not alone in this.  I'm right here with you.  You know that I will defend you.  You know that I will try my best to prevent others from trying to trash your name.  You know that!"

Zalika raised her head and spoke.  "If you defend me, for some people that will be the same as saying that you condone everything that I've ever done.  It could become a distraction in your campaign.  You would lose votes because of me, and I just couldn't live with myself knowing that!" 

Palmer spoke calmly and reassuringly to Zalika, and told her that it would all be okay, that things would be difficult at times, but that everything would all work out.  Zalika kept shaking her head.  "I can't.  I just can't."

"What if you didn't run for President?  What if you remained in politics, but just did not run for President?"  Zalika heard her own voice saying those words, but could not believe they had actually come out of her mouth.  Palmer looked like he crumpled a little upon hearing those words.  He felt a sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach.  "I've wanted to be President since I was 10 years old.  I've been groomed for politics since I was a child.  I've spent my life trying to make the right decisions and trying to align myself with the right people.  I feel with ever fiber of my being that I am on the right path, and that things are working out in such a way for a reason.  Being President is more than just an aspiration for me, I feel that it is my destiny.  I have to at least try."  Zalika said "I know, and I believe that you will win."

Zalika stood up and Palmer looked startled.  He said "This doesn't have to be the end for us.  I'm not running for President right away."  Zalika said "I can't be in a relationship that has an expiration date.  This is too hard."  Palmer stood up and took Zalika in his arms.  "I don't..." he heard his voice tremble, so he took a moment, cleared his throat, and started again.  "I don't want to lose you.  I love you."

Zalika had often imagined what it would be like the first time she heard the words "I Love You" from Palmer.  She had always known that he loved her, he said it in so many ways other than just those 3 little words.  Never had she imagined that the first time she would hear him say the actual words would be as they were saying goodbye.  Zalika said "And I love you.  I've loved you since the day we met, and I never believed that was even possible until I met you.

Palmer held Zalika close, and he kissed her.  She kissed him back, and then tearfully said "Goodbye, Palmer.  You will always have my vote."

Palmer and Zalika have been dealing with a lot of pain since the break-up.  Check out their latest video, "Unbreak My Heart" (with vocals by yours truly).

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Need Help with a Title

I need a good name for the storyline on this blog involving my adult dolls.  I've been going back and forth for weeks now, feeling uninspired, unimaginative, and unoriginal.  I need to come up with a title so that I can have a tab of the top of the page where readers can click to see all of the stories in some order going back to the beginning.  I've come up with 5 titles so far, so please help me choose, or let me know if you have a better title than these.

Dollicious Tales
Grown Folks Business
Roxville Love
Majority Rules
Doll in Good Time

I've opened a poll on the right side of the screen for you to vote.  The poll will be open for 1 week.

I've had fun sharing stories about my teen and 'tween dolls through Calista's Diary Entries, but my grown folks have stories to share as well.

  • Palmer and Zalika make a huge decision regarding the future of their relationship

  • Nina and her husband face a crisis together

  • Guess who's the wife of Brad and the mother of Bob?

  • Alan and Midge want everyone to know what a happy family they are

My dolls live in the fictional town of Roxville, Oklahoma and some of them face complex relationship issues.  Right now the storyline focuses mainly on Palmer and Zalika, but others will get pulled in along the way.  Certainly, Adele and Darius want to come back and give a status update!  They do not understand how Palmer and Zalika have the prominent spot right now, and not them.  The stories will come sporadically.  

Thanks for helping me decide, and thanks for reading!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Calista's Diary Entry - When It Clicks

Dear Diary,

When I began my keyboard lessons, Jay told me that "the most important thing to remember is that Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge".  I was confused and asked him what boys and fudge have to do with playing a musical instrument?  Well his mnemonic devices helped me learn the lines and spaces of the treble and base clefs quickly and easily.  The hard part was recognizing the notes quickly and getting my fingers to do exactly what I wanted them to do, when I wanted them to do it.  There's a lot going on at the same time!  Recognize the note on the sheet music, find the right note on the keyboard, hold it for the correct length of time, do or do not use the damper pedal...  Okay, this is hard!

During the first month, I spent so much time just leaning the proper techniques, practicing scales, and playing simple songs such as Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and Mary Had a Little Lamb (and why would anyone want to sing about being Down in the Valley anyway).  I kept asking Jay when we would get to the fun part.  He kept telling me to just keep practicing, and he promised it would pay off.  So I did.  I practiced 2 hours a day like he told me to, and sometimes more.  It became easier to play the scales and to play the notes from sheet music.  I got to play songs that were a little bit more complicated, but they were still songs that people sang like 100 years ago.

Jay asked me if I wanted to learn how to play by ear, as well as read music.  I said that I thought that was something that only musical geniuses could do.  He told me that some people are naturally gifted and can pick that up right away, but he said that some people can be taught.  He told me that I had a good ear and that he could teach me.  I told him yes, I wanted to learn to play by ear.  He told me that there would be a lot more work.  I was ready for it.  I learned the 12 major chords and I learned about chord progressions.  Jay gave me charts and diagrams and there was a lot of memorization.  One day, Jay gave me the assignment of picking out a popular song that's a favorite of mine, listening to the chorus, playing the melody of the chorus on the keyboard, and writing the notes down on a piece of paper.  He told me to make sure that I had a recording of the song at our next lesson.  I did as he instructed.  It was pretty easy to listen to the melody and play it.

At my next lesson, Jay told me to look at the notes that I had written and to tell me what key the song was in.  I didn't answer right way, but then I recognized that there were no sharps or flats, so I said "Is it C?"  Then Jay told me to play the melody with my right hand, and to try the common chord progressions for the key of C with my left.  I hummed the song as I played, and I found a progression that fit!  I was actually playing the song, and it actually SOUNDED LIKE THE SONG!  "OMG!  I'm playing my favorite song!"  Jay was excited, too.  He told me that this is his favorite part of teaching, when all of the hard work pays off and it all clicks, and the fun part begins.  He told me that of course, I still had a lot to learn and a lot of practicing to do.  He told me that he would teach me some embellishments that would really make the song sound good.  

Jay instructed me that for my next lesson, I should write down the notes of the melody for the rest of my song, and below those notes to write the chords, and to practice my song (but don't forget to practice my scales and practice my sheet music songs).  Well, playing my favorite song will not be work at all for me.  I am so excited!

Jay told me that I have a nice singing voice and that I should try out for the performing choir when school starts.  Really?  Me?  That's not something that I had considered before.  I guess I sort of frowned because then he said that he thinks it will be a good fit for me, since I like to perform and I love music.  He told me that many of their musical numbers include choreographed moves, and he told me I would be really good at that part.  He told me that they also read sheet music, and that I would learn some music theory.  I told him that I would consider it.

When school starts, we will continue the lessons, but we will cut back to 1 lesson per week, and I will cut my practice time back to an hour a day, 6 days a week.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Next Steps

Part of Palmer's success is due to his ability to anticipate the thoughts and actions of others, and to plan his own actions several steps ahead.  He thought of it like a game of chess - he not only had to anticipate his opponent's next move, but the move after that, and the one after that, as many steps ahead as he could.  He thought of Zalika as a partner, not an opponent, but he felt that he knew what her next step would be, and he would be prepared.

Palmer anticipated that he and Zalika would have a difficult conversation, but that ultimately Zalika would say that she wanted for them to be together, no matter what, and Palmer felt the same way.  So Palmer had decided that he would propose at that moment.  He slipped out of the office a little early one day and visited a local jeweler to pick out just the right engagement ring.  He hadn't been there long when he saw William entering the store.  He muttered "Damn" under his breath.

William was one of Palmer's top political advisers, known as a brilliant political strategist.  William's experience, connections, and analytical skills had proven beneficial to Palmer time and time again.  Palmer had felt fortunate when William had taken an interest in his career early on.  One thing that William is not known for is his subtlety, and Palmer appreciated that as well.  When others would offer a breath mint, William would flat out say "Your breath stinks."  In his position, Palmer was surrounded by "yes" men and women, and he appreciated having someone who could bluntly say what others wouldn't.  Which is why he did not want to see William at this particular moment.

As William approached, Palmer asked "How did you know that I was here?"  William said "Do you really even need to ask?"  Palmer told William that he was not interested in what he had to say.  William told Palmer that the reason is because he knows that William is there to tell him the truth.
William:  You're making a big mistake.
Palmer:  I don't think so.
William:  You know that they will rip her to shreds.
Palmer:  They can try it.  I will defend her to my last breath.
William:  I know that you will, and that will make you vulnerable.  Has she told you about...
Palmer:  It hasn't come up.
William:  So she hasn't told you?
Palmer:  It's not as if she's hiding it, it just hasn't come up.
William:  If she hasn't told you, then she's hiding it. 

Palmer thought back to when he and Zalika had met and started dating.  He did not order the background check on her, but he knew that his people would run one on Zalika, because that's what they do.  It was William who had told him the findings.  Palmer didn't hear anything that had changed his feelings for Zalika, and he never told her about the background check.
William:  Look, she's a lovely woman.  Smart, charming, successful, funny as hell.  I know what she means to you.  Under normal circumstances, I would say that she is perfect for you.  But YOU are on track to become the PRESIDENT!  These are not normal circumstances!
Palmer explained to William that he understood that William's preference would be for him to meet a woman with a particular pedigree, particularly one with political affiliations that could benefit Palmer.  Palmer reminded William that he had dated women like this before meeting Zalika, and had been bored by them. Meeting Zalika and making a connection with her had been the most wonderful surprise of his life.  She excited him, understood him, comforted him, made him laugh, and so much more.  She was his partner, and he felt that he could face anything with her by his side.  Palmer said when he's elected as President, the job will be for 8 years maximum.  Palmer said that he will have a lot more life to live after that, and wants that life to be a happy one.  Zalika makes him happy.

William asked Palmer if he remembered when their associate Sutton had said that Zalika was a bit manly.  Palmer immediately frowned and tensed up and said "He was WAY OUT OF LINE with that comment!"  William said "You wanted to punch him in the face right then and there, didn't you?"  Palmer said "HELL YEAH I wanted to punch him in the face!"

William said "See, this is what I'm talking about.  Think of how you're feeling right now, and multiply those feelings by 1,000.  They are going to say things about her that are so much worse than what Sutton said.  They want to distract you and make you vulnerable to your emotions.  And when you defend her, they will attack you and use your own words against you."

Palmer turned his attention to the salesperson, who droned on and on about the cut, color, clarity, and carat weight of the ring that Palmer had asked to see.  Palmer purchased the ring.  William shook his head..
William:  You need to let her know what she's in for.
Palmer:  She knows.
William:  Does she?  Does she REALLY know?  Or have you been sugar-coating things because you don't want her to be hurt?  Do you want ME to talk to her?
Palmer:  Oh, no!
William:  You need to be frank with her.  Be brutally honest.  Right now she probably has romantic notions in her head about how wonderful it will be when you're both living in the White House and how you'll live happily ever after.  You need to let her know that there are wolves out there who will relentless seek to destroy you both at every turn.  Can you do that?
Palmer:  Of course.
William:  I know you, and I know that you want to protect her more than anything, and shield her from pain.  Being with you is going to HURT, and the only way that you can protect her from that is to let her go.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

As She Ponders

As Palmer suggested, Zalika thought long and hard about their future together, and tried to realistically imagine what the future would hold for them as a couple when Palmer runs for President, and beyond.

Zalika recalled that many years prior, there was a bit of a stir in the media when a recorded telephone conversation between Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles was made public.  Zalika had found a portion of the conversation hilarious, and had made friends and co-workers burst into laughter with her impressions of the couple.  Even Palmer.  Her impression had become butchered over time, misquoted and over-exaggerated for effect.  One evening, while Zalika and Palmer dined privately, the conversation turned to the royal couple and Zalika had an occasion to once again do her impression.
Zalika as Prince Charles:  "When I die, I want to come back as a pair of your knickers!"
Zalika as Camilla Parker Bowles:  "Ooooooooh Darling!"
Palmer had thrown his head back and howled with laughter, his mouth wide open and filled with half-chewed steak and potatoes.   Zalika was at once repulsed and highly amused at the sight of the dignified Palmer struggling to keep his food in his mouth.  She laughed until tears came to her eyes as Palmer pleaded "Stop! You're going to make me choke!"  They'd both had to take a break from eating in order to compose themselves once again.

So it's not so funny now.  Zalika imagined what it would be like if a recording of one of her late night conversations with Palmer were made public.  Humiliation would ensue.  Zalika winced as she imagined her mother's reaction, and worse yet her father's reaction, and the reactions of all of the people that she knows and cares about.  She and Palmer would have to be a lot more careful.  Zalika thought about reporters and their cameras with long-range telephoto lenses, and imagined their lives behind locked doors, constantly checking to make sure that the windows are closed and the curtains pulled.  Ok, she thought, so that's the easy part.

The hard part was looking at her own life through a microscope, and imagining how Palmer's political rivals would characterize her based upon her past actions.  She had told Palmer before that when she was in college, she did a lot of dumb shit.  She had told him some of the more humorous stories and they had both laughed.  But there were some things that she didn't tell him, and had never intended to, until now.  Palmer had known since he was a child that he wanted to be President one day, and was careful about what he did. And when he did mess up, he had help and support to make his mess go away.  Zalika had gone to a college that was several states away from where she grew up, in a place where she didn't know anyone.  She had looked at it as an opportunity to re-invent herself.  The problem was that she didn't know who she wanted to be.  So she tried a lot of things, and made a lot of dumb mistakes.  Never did she think that her actions would one day potentially be looked at under intense scrutiny.

She had made pretty good grades, but she had also partied.  She was particularly proud of her body back then, and wore a lot of revealing clothing.  "Ok", she thought, "there are probably going to be photos of a scantily clad drunk me that surface - what else"?  She thought about her Statistics class and how she had really struggled at first, until she went to her professor for help.  She ended up making an A in the class, but  "they" would probably say that it was more because of the relationship that she had then carried on with her professor than about the work that she'd done to earn the A.  Then she thought about the polaroid photos that she had taken for an ex, and how after they'd broken up she'd asked for the photos and he'd told her that he had already gotten rid of them.  Did he really get rid of them?  "Okay, if those photos surface, that could be a scandal, so that's something that I definitely need to make Palmer aware of", she thought.  She imagined those photos of her younger self in the pages of a magazine or on an internet website, and again imagined her parents' reactions.  She shuddered.

She thought long and hard about her past, even those parts that she didn't like to remember, and she felt fear and dread as she imagined her upcoming conversation with Palmer.