Sunday, February 25, 2018

Green Eyes

Daddy Steve: There's something about green eyes.  To me, they have always seemed slightly mysterious, exotic, and beguiling.  Perhaps I was influenced by a song on a Jimmy Dorsey album that belonged to my grandparents.  I can remember listening to it as a child when we went to visit them..

Sasha dolls with green eyes do turn up occasionally, although they were never originally made that way.  They seem to date mostly from the 1973-74 period, and were the product of unstable pigments in the brown eye-paint combined with years of exposure to sunlight.  It's similar to the process that causes pink lips to fade to a putty color.  While some collectors may consider green eyes to be a defect, I like to think of them as a happy accident.

I searched quite a while for a nice green-eyed boy to come live at Gregoropolis, and late last year I finally found him (Paul was supposed to be the last doll of 2017, but things don't always work out as planned...).  His name is Gavin, which I happen to think is a good name for a green-eyed boy.  He is a pumpkin-stringed boy from 1973-74 and generally in good shape, although he does have some scrapes and scratches that come from having lived a life.  His hair is good and not falling out at all, although it was very unruly when he arrived--it's straight and springy, and tends to want to stand straight up.  Most importantly, his eyes had turned a soft green color and not the rather harsh yellow-green hue that some dolls unfortunately develop.

Gavin's arrival, with wild hair.  The only clothing he had left was his denim trousers.

I gave Gavin a good 'welcome home' cleanup, and then shampooed his hair in an attempt to tame it down.  After washing, I started to dry it with the hair dryer on its 'no heat' setting but could see that it just wanted to spring back up again.  I put a hairnet on him and set him in front of a fan to finish drying.  His hair turned out well! It still leans towards unruly, but I have him wearing a sporty cap to work on that.

Shampoo time.  Not a single hair was lost!

After the wash.  Already springing up again!

Gavin: Oh, the indignity!

Next step: the eyebrows.  Green eyes are handsome; green eyebrows, not so much.  I've had some experience with acrylic paints, so I thought I would give them a try.  I started practicing blending paint in order to achieve the 'perfect' shade of brown.  Eventually I realized that it wasn't rocket science, and that any number of shades would work well.  Then it was just a matter of painting them on.  I wanted him to have the same style of eyebrows he originally had, so I didn't try any fancy NP stuff.  I think the best approach is to work quickly and not fuss over them too much.  They probably could have been just a bit more tapered, but overall I am happy with the result.

Miguel: Why is Daddy Steve painting all these caterpillars?
Sasha: He has mysterious ways.

New eyebrows!  I think they look similar to those of my 1972 boy, John Martin.

So here's Gavin: Gregoropolis' only green-eyed boy.  I think he has a suave, urbane personality.  Perhaps he'll have his own Big Band someday.

Practicing for his Green Eyes solo.

Saturday, February 17, 2018


Daddy Steve: We've just experienced a small crisis here in Gregoropolis.  Charles's pet frog, Hopalong, escaped from his frogararium!  Someone left the cover open and out he hopped!  Naturally, Charles was distraught...

Charles: >sniff, sniff<   He's gone forever!  >sob!<
Kaveh: Don't worry, we'll find him.
Sasha: He couldn't have gone far.

We searched the entire house.  We searched high...

Robin: He's not up here, but there is a lot of dust!
Daddy John: >Ahem<  Yes, thank you, Robin.

We searched low...

Blake: Do you see anything?
Bowie: No, just some old phone books.

We searched some rather unlikely places...

Frank: Nothing but crumbs.

Until Patrick and Ravi provided some excellent advice.

Patrick: We need to start thinking like a frog.
Ravi: Yes!  Where would a frog go?

Indeed, where in the house would an amphibian go?  One room comes to mind...

...And that's exactly where we found him.  Of course, since we're an all-guy household, we left the lid up.  

Luckily for us, Anthony sprung into action...

...And saved the day.

Anthony: Gotcha!

Hopalong is now safely back in his home where he will no doubt reminisce about his big adventure for a long time to come.

Charles: You gave me quite a scare!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Happy Valentine's Day

Daddy Steve: On behalf of all the Gregoropolis boys, Sebastian, Giancarlo, and Luke wish all of you a happy Valentine's Day!

...and send you a 'virtual' bouquet!

Friday, February 9, 2018


Daddy Steve: Ever since Mikko and Tyler received a pair of roller blades for Christmas, they've been just dying to try them out.

Mikko: Why do we have to wait until the weather is nice?  There's plenty of room here in the house.

Of course, skating around on a level floor is far too sedate for our two daredevils.

Tyler: This is going to be awesome!
Mikko: I know!

Anthony quickly put a stop to their reckless scheme.

Anthony: You two are going to hurt yourselves and then we'll have to mail you down to Dr. Pat.  If you're going to try all kinds of crazy stunts, then we have to buy padding for you first.
Mikko & Tyler: Awwwwwwwww

Because patience is not in their nature, they soon hatched a plan...

Mikko: I know where we can get padding right now!
Tyler: Do tell.

Robin: Hey, where did all the sofa cushions go?

Mikko: Geronimo!
Tyler: Whoo-hoo!

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Oh, L'amour

Daddy Steve:  Although it's not yet Valentine's Day, Cupid has already struck Gregoropolis and his target was Emile!  It all started innocently enough, as Emile was rifling through the CD collection.

Emile >sniff<   No Debussy or even Edith Piaf!  What kind of uncouth household ees zees?

Suddenly, he came upon a CD with a very attractive young lady on the cover.

Emile: Mon Dieu!  Who could zis angel be?

Her name is Évelyne Courtois, but in the 1960s she was better known as 'Pussy Cat'; one of France's 'yé-yé' girls.

Emile: Très belle!  I am in love!
Luke: She is pretty.

A quick internet search led to some grainy black and white music videos on YouTube.  Have a look!

Emile: Ah, mon chat, where 'ave you been all my life?

Emile: So beautiful and so talented!
Bowie: She does have a nice voice. Wasn't she brunette in the other one?
Emile: Please, mon ami, do not spoil zis for me.

Soon, Emile was playing the Pussy Cat CD non-stop.

Emile: Is she not enchanting?
Giancarlo: This is the tenth time you've played that today!

There was nothing else for it--he must write her a letter to make his feelings known!

Emile: Perhaps I compose ze poem, non?
Paul: How are you going to send it to her?  You don't know where she lives.
Emile: I will send eet to le Président Macron.  Surely they know each other and 'e can deliver it.

Ezra: You do realize that she's a bit older than you?
Emile: Oui,but ze older women...Ils sont fascinants!