In Which I Finish A Project

August 14, 2012

So. After Much swearing. Ok, a lot of swearing. Really need to work on that but until I no longer have junky computers to work with I don’t see that happening. (I will not start a ranty post on how I hate being poor….I will not I will not I will not!)

Most of you who went canvassing in Troy with me know that my good friend Callie gave me a doll. And you also know I promptly took her to pieces the minute I Got ahold of a blowdryer.

Exhibit A


Actually, I just wanted an excuse to post that picture. I’m wondering if it is going to cause Callie to have heart failure. If I’m told she’s in the hospital tonight, I’ll know why.

Ahem. Back on topic. What no one has bothered to ask, however, including Callie, is why.  No one has said to me, “why, J–? Why are you taking that really expensive doll apart?” No. What people have said to me is, “you have a disembodied doll your desk, you’re creepy!”

So, permit me to explain. An American Girl Doll is supposed to be able to hold a position at a 45 degree angle. Kind of like what Samantha here is NOT doing:

As you can see, Samantha here has a bad case of….. THE FLOPPIES! You see, American Girl Doll arms and legs are held onto the body by an elastic cord. This allows the limbs to have a wider range of movement. However, over time the elastic wears out and loses its elasticity. When this happens, the doll gets loose. There is nothing you can do about this. Even if you set the doll on a shelf and do nothing with her for years and years (and who wants to do THAT?) the elastic WILL wear out. It’s a fact of life.When I told her Samantha would require restringing (the poor thing was so loose she could barely stand on her own!) Callie kept repeating, “but I was so gentle with her.” Sigh. She kept repeating this after I told her IT. DOESN’T.MATTER.

So, I went out and bought (and borrowed) the necessary equipment: brass ferules, baking soda, downy fabric softener (just in case…didn’t end up needing it.) a crimper, and a blow dryer. And I set to work.

And then I discovered what Callie HADN’T told me. You see, vinyl is very absorbent, particularly the type of vinyl American Girl Dolls are made of. You should NOT put brightly colored clothing on a doll and then leave said clothing on for years and years. In fact, if you own an American Girl Doll, please take a moment to find her, see if she is wearing bright colors, and if she is, promptly strip her. Even if there’s no damage done yet, there might be. Go on, I’ll wait.

That’s taken care of? Ok, moving along then.

So I took some baking soda and scrubbed one leg for about an hour. The whole top of her legs were bright blue, and after an hour all I’d done was fade it. Sigh. back to the drawing board. I found out that 10% Benzoyl Peroxide (commonly used to treat acne, can you imagine?) works wonders for stains. I bought some, and applied it. Unfortunately it takes about a week for it to actually work. And I missed a spot every two weeks. It was therefore about 4 weeks before those stupid legs were clean, but afterwards it was so worth it.

Finally I set to work for REALZ this time… or so I think. I’ve just got 3 of the limbs attached to the body when I realize that I only have THREE packets of brass ferules instead of 4. And the only store around here that sells them is in M, which is the big town 45 minutes from this dinky little hick town. So I call Lowes to make sure they have them in stock, and then I drive. This takes a good 3 hours out of my day, at which point I’m hungry, so I go eat.

THEN when I’ve finally got all the limbs attached, it’s time for the hard part: restuffing. Seriously, I don’t know HOW they fit all of that stuffing in that TINY LITTLE BODY. I really really don’t. Much swearing and praying (is it even legal to do those things at once? I hope God’s not mad…)

I had to keep looking at the shelf, at the other doll I’d restrung, telling myself, “you’ve done this before J–. And you’ve done a good job. You can do it again….” And Finally, I wound up with this:


So, here’s where the lesson is. I’m afraid it got lost in the ranting, and I apologize. This paragraph here is the REAL reason I wanted to make this post.

You see, this summer, I felt just like Samantha: torn to pieces. Not only were my arms and legs detached from my torso and my stuffing pulled out, but, like Samantha lying there on the desk in my room, I was exposed, with all my faults right out there for everyone to see and frown on. And I know the leaders (half of them anyway) said worse things about me than “creepy.”)

But, I took Samantha apart to fix her. And, I guess I don’t really know how this works, or even IF it works like this, but, I’m hoping that, if God took me apart, he had a reason, and that someday, (hopefully VERY soon!) He’s going to put me back together again.

All better.

Like this:



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