2015 plans

Happy New Year, dear followers! I hope you and yours got safely into 2015 with nothing but happiness and fun. Personally my husband and I have both been fairly sick, so our New Year’s Eve was very low-key.

After reading a lot of people doing a balance check for 2014, I figured I should probably make a list of goals for 2015. I’m hesitant to call them resolutions, since I absolutely suck at those. So here are my plans, hopes, and goals for 2015.

1. Buy Phia
This is my number one plan, hope, and dream for 2015. Phia will be a tan PukiFee Vanilla, but as it appears I will have no luck on the second-hand market (don’t get me started on my problems with a specific seller), I will be crossing my fingers that Fairyland decides to do an adorable Valentine’s event with tan PukiFees. Realistically, it won’t happen, as the current tan event ends February 2nd, so here’s to hoping that they at least have a tan event for PukiFees in 2015!

2. Learn to sew/draw/something creative
I really want to develop a creative skill of some sort, and I think that sewing is more likely to happen than drawing, but I’m leaving my options wide open – I know myself.

3. Take more pictures
My achy head and generally foul mood has made it harder to photograph my dolls in 2014. I don’t know if anything about my head will change in 2015, but at least I’d like to photograph my girls more. Even if it’s just for Instagram.

4. Blog more regularly
I tend to neglect my blog for weeks and months, which annoys me, because it’s harder to get back into blogging than just continuing blogging. So in 2015 I’ll try not to take such big breaks.

5. Get better at commenting on blogs
I have several loyal readers, who almost always comment on my own blog, and it makes me so happy to see their kind words whenever I publish something. However I absolutely suck at paying back, as I never really know what to say. I’ll try to get better at just writing whatever comes to mind, even if it’s silly or seems stupid to me, because I know how wonderful it is to get comments.

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Instagram

Somebody (I’m not mentioning any names, but if I were, I’d be saying Lise) got me addicted to Instagram when I finally got an Android phone.

My Instagram account

I’ve added a little link to Instagram in my sidebar so you can keep sort of track of me there as well as you’ve been able to on Flickr. Be warned though, I post far worse and sillier photos on Instagram, since it’s a site that lends itself to that so easily. I also tend to post plushies and my cat. And food sometimes. For my more “serious” photos, you should still check Flickr.

So, are you also an Instagram addict? Facebook? Flickr? Or just every single place on the Internet like me?

Sappy Christmas song

Happy Holidays, reader. I don’t know about you (obviously) but I celebrate Christmas – preferably in a variant with less Christ and more gifts, candy, and Santa Claus, since I’m not really a Christian to say the least. I do however strongly enjoy Christmas trees, Christmas cookies, candles with numbers (advent and calendar), and lots of red elves. What I don’t enjoy as much is the pressure that always comes with December. Combined with my constant head aches, the stress of buying (the right) presents, decorating the house, and visiting family, I never have much energy left for my dolls, which saddens me every year – and always catches me by surprise. In addition, whenever I have a period with daily pain, my interest in my dollies drop like the temperature outside. I usually complain about this to poor Lise, who is also trying to keep their interest in dolls going.

Another thing I like to complain to them about is the fact that I can’t trade and/or sell my doll and spare faceplate! They keep an eye out for me, and I’m keeping an eye out for me, but no luck so far. (If you have a spare PukiFee Vanilla in tan or normal skin just laying around, collecting dust, tell me?) So I learned something new about myself last night. I apparently like to go a little dramatic and quite frankly idiotic, when nothing goes my way.  (The list of crap falling down this year is so long, but let’s focus on the doll thing.) So I wrote a song! Disclaimer: Avert your eyes if bad lyrics tend to make your ears, eyes or other parts of you bleed.

Trade with me a pretty dolly
Fa la la la la, la la la la
It would really make me jolly
Fa la la la la, la la la la

PukiFee Vanilla tan skin
Fa la la la la, la la la la
This year really awful has been
Fa la la la la, la la la la

Give a shout and make me happy
Fa la la la la, la la la la
I know this song is pretty sappy
Fa la la la la, la la la la

Also found on Tumblr.

So, dear reader: When the dolly world frustrates you, how do you act out?

Birthday

My friend asked me today: “Have you given up on your blog?” No, I said. I just don’t know what to write. But she touched upon a need to write. I’ve been thinking for some days about making a post in honour of my birthday, and she gave me the last little push.

My life has changed so much since my last birthday. It was only a few months later that I hit my head and went into this limbo of not being useful at all. I’ve always been the type of person who makes a plan and then sticks to it, so I was pretty sure that the world would come crashing down around me. Now – almost a year later – the world is still spinning. Instead I came crashing down.

When my plans went down the drain, I suddenly got around to spending a lot of time with myself. In the beginning, it was fun – it was like a holiday! But as the days went by, I tried my best to escape myself; losing myself in books, games, and the internet. I didn’t want to face myself, because my entire facade had cracked and was threatening to fall apart. So I hid even more, playing hours and hours of World of Warcraft every day to not face myself in the mirror. I was useless, my plans were failing, and my world looked so wrong. My nail polishes started collecting dust, and my beloved dolls stayed in their cupboard.

Finally, I got some help from a therapist. It didn’t take long for her to force me to look into a mirror – although a metaphorical one. And she asked me how much of that cracked facade was actually me, and how much was other people’s expectations and even my own attempts to force myself into a box I just didn’t fit into? And slowly, that cracked facade crashed down, and nothing was left.

I had to figure out who I was. If you already know yourself, I envy you. Because it sure as heck isn’t easy to be 25 (although, if you wish to congratulate me on my birthday, pretend I’m 21. I hate my age!) and look hard into yourself and figure out who you are. However, I started with the easy questions: What do you like? And the first answer was always, without hesitation: Dolls. I like my dolls. They’re my creative outlet. I like to photograph and think about my dolls more than I like anything else – even more than being online! That being said, I’m getting slowly back into things. I’m checking Tumblr again. I’m reading doll blogs. I’m looking at pretty pictures on Flickr. I’m dreaming of new dolls. But I can feel that reaching in and grabbing a doll isn’t far away. I just don’t want to push myself. I’ll get there, I don’t doubt it for a moment.

With my return to the dolls came also my return to my doll friends. The way they greeted me warmly, expressing that they had missed me, made me realise something else: They’re not doll friends. They’re my friends. Plain and simple. We started out blabbing about dolls, but now it’s a safe place to share happiness and fears. To tell that you might consider starting up your education again, and hear your friends be super-proud of you (some of us might have teared up a bit). To tell that life is overwhelming, lash out, and be forgiven – we know how hard life can be sometimes, and we love you, even if we don’t tell you directly. To share fears about possibly pursuing a career as photographer and be told that it’s an actual option for you. To gush about that new doll that you just need (hey, we’re still doll collectors!).

I apologise for the lengthiness of my post, but I applaud you if you got through it! I hope to hear a little something from you out there, whether it’s your own story of finding yourself, a hope to find yourself, or just the doll you really want next time!

About giving up

I’m one of those people. The ones who will decide to do something and then hang onto it, nail and tooth, even if they’re not enjoying it anymore. I believe I’ve touched on it before here on my blog – I don’t just say A, I will also say B. And sometimes even C. When I ask myself why, the answer is that I’ve been taught not to quit. My parents have always been pretty awful about letting their children quit things, and as such I’ve always had to have a really good explanation as to why I didn’t want to do something anymore. Whether it was quitting handball, quitting a friendship or even quitting school. While it has certainly taught me something about persisting, it has also begun to stop me from trying new things. If I don’t see myself being pretty good at something in the beginning, I tend not to like doing it, but if I want to quit again, I’d have to have a better reason than “I’m no good at this”. So instead of trying, I’ll just steer clear of it – then I won’t have to feel like a failure for giving up.

While this all sounds very serious, it has been brought on by something much less serious! I decided (weeks ago) to give up on A Doll A Week. It was fun, but sickness and stress has kept me from doing it every week, and it was causing a feeling of guilt in me that I wasn’t keeping up. And it was one of those things where I could actually find a pretty good reason to quit: My hobby isn’t supposed to stress me out!

But while I was discussing with myself whether to give up or not, I suddenly realised that I don’t have to answer to my parents anymore – at least not when it comes to a hobby (with my parents, things like school and job is another matter entirely). I don’t even have to justify it to my husband. I just have to ask myself if I’m giving up for a good reason, or if I’m merely being lazy (because honestly, I need to kick my own ass into gear sometimes!). And with ADAW I’m giving up for a good reason, and besides I’m not giving up doll photography. I’m just giving up on forcing myself to do one photo shoot each week. I’ll still be doing the Adventurer’s Club and random shoots when I feel like it, and good thing Heather is giving us themes. I tend to feel inspired by the themes, and I try to challenge myself a bit, do something I haven’t tried yet.

adventurersclublogo

Losing your imagination

I sometimes wonder why there is so much stigma about owning dolls – even pieces of art like BJDs. The subject comes up sometimes, usually it’s brought up by a new person in the hobby wondering aloud whether they should or shouldn’t tell family and friends about their new passion in life. I personally haven’t let my family know about my dolls yet. My parents-in-law know about them as they have seen them, but they both choose to ignore it. I think they simply don’t know what to say. My friends all know, since all my friends are people I’ve met through the hobby. My last non-doll-owning friend also knew about them, and while she didn’t want one for herself, she was okay with me telling her a little bit about something exciting every once in a while. Those friends who aren’t close (people I know from the university) don’t know. I simply don’t want to discuss it with them, because I know they’d be very likely to find it strange.

But why is there such a stigma? I’m sure we’ve all encountered it at some point or another, whether it’s with dolls or another hobby considered “childish”. Personally I like dolls, playing electronic games (Wii, 3DS, PlayStation, computer) and watching movies made for children (Beauty & The Beast, The Little Mermaid, etc.). All these things carry a stigma, at least in Denmark. I’m sick of pretending that I buy things for my nieces and nephew, but it’s just so much easier than having to endure the stares. Sometimes I’m brave and tell them that “no, I don’t need you to wrap it, it’s for me”, but it’s rare. Can I please get to color in a coloring book with my niece (and then alone when she leaves the table) without getting sarcastic comments from my annoying uncles? Can I please get to play my 3DS in peace while on the bus without people staring at me like I’m insane? Can I please give my husband the Lego house he wants for Christmas without my family giggling about it?

My dolls are the only thing that makes me stick up for myself. I will proudly walk through a crowd where I’m likely to meet someone I know, holding my friend’s absolutely gorgeous SD boy (my own are tinies, they get packed into my bag). I will sit with a group of friends and all our dolls on the table and happily answer all the silly questions from people passing us. I will display my girls in a cabinet in my office and be excited and proud.

But why the stigma? Likely because we’re supposed to lose our imagination when we grow up. Playing with dolls and Lego and watching Disney movies are absolutely fine when you’re little. So is pretending that you live in a world filled with fairies and princesses and glitter. Want to dress up as Princess Peach? Sure, we’ll buy a costume in a toy store! But the moment you cross that invisible line and people begin to expect you to be mature and reasonable, all these things are supposed to fade into the past. You’re supposed to accept your responsibility and channel all your dreams into your life – make your life better than your dreams. If you don’t succeed, it’s just bad luck, and you have to change your dreams accordingly. You have to keep going, have to keep acting as a person whose imagination only goes as far as to real-life things like getting a promotion, getting a new sofa, or seeing your child become older. Imagining fun things are for children – real life is the only thing adults get.

So in this home, we play with Lego (and admire Lego creations that light up), we play with dolls (okay, that’s mostly me), watch movies for children (okay, again mostly me), dream up worlds filled with fairies, princesses and glitter (my husband’s imaginary worlds have more lightsabers than glitter I believe) and dream of dressing up as a princess (either Belle or maybe Rosalina from Mario, possibly even Garnet from FFIX – but again that’s mostly me…). What is your home like?

Doll wishlist

So, I’m still sick. My concussion means that I am in pain pretty much every day and night these days. Fun, fun, fun. Last week I didn’t have the energy to pick up my camera and take some shots of my girls, so my goal is two pictures this week to catch up. It also means I don’t have the energy to try and be witty/interesting/awake in a blog post. Hence my idea to do something that demanded less of me: My doll wishlist! I haven’t done an actual wishlist in quite some time, but at this point it’s fairly set. I also feel fairly confident that I’ll be able to get through it within not too many years – it’s quite manageable!

Doll wishlist

  • PukiFee Luna (NS + sleeping face + custom faceup)
  • PukiFee Ante (NS + sleeping face)
  • Lati Yellow Sophie (GS)
  • Lati Yellow (pink skin)
  • LittleFee girl body (NS)
  • LittleFee Chloe (TS + sleeping face)
  • LittleFee Lishe (NS + sleeping face)
  • Aileen doll dragons (2 of them)

So, do you have a steady wishlist, or does it change all the time? Does it make you wince in horror of the expensiveness, or do you feel comfortable with it?