Monday, April 29, 2013

Thrift Find Preview

Just a quick preview of what's coming......

I am tired of waiting for new Monster High dolls.... I need a fix

I am really jonesing for some new Monster High dolls to start hitting the stores.    It was reported on Tumblr that the new Picture Day dolls were seen in stores in MA.  And,   I missed out on
pre-ordering Headmistress Bloodgood Sunday on TRU's website.   At $42.99, you get a headless doll(head included ) and a  horse.  Granted, she is hella cool,  I really hate that she is a TRU exclusive.   That just gives Toys R Us  the justification to completely over price the set.

 As a general rule, I really hate shopping at Toys R Us.  But, they did have a Monster High BOGO 40% single packed dolls.  Of course, they had nothing new and shelves full of   "older" dolls.       I pick up a Dance Class Robecca and Scaris Ghoulia,  thinking that the Scaris and Dance dolls were equally priced.  Wrong!   The Robecca was $16.99, which is $4-6 then most other stores.   That is even more expensive then Walgreens ($14.99), but at least Walgreens does a BOGO free sale on MH and other toys from time to time.    

I bought the dolls to dress in the deluxe fashion packs (11.99).  I have been putting off picking up the fashion packs.  But, I really love Ghoulia's fashion pack.   Her earrings are earthworms!  How cool is that?    Ghoulia is one of my favorites.  Her accessories are so cleverly designed.    With these packs, there isn't any accessory recycling like we have seen in the newest single fashion packs.


I like the deluxe fashion packs overall.   Depending on where you purchase them, the price range is $10- $12.   Which isn't terrible for 2 outfits and accessories. Considering Target sells the single fashion packs for $5.99 in store, they are a good deal.    

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Moving in the rain and a few fun finds

Well this weekend has been long and we are looking forward to an even longer week ahead.   Saturday, our new carpet finally got installed.   We were able to get some of our furniture moved back in before it started raining  and well, as of typing this, it hasn't stopped raining yet.  So moving in will be a little slower then we had hoped.

A co-worker of mine brought me a little box of Hot Wheels.   I gave my kids most of them, but a few of them I decided to keep.

The 2 Titanium Star Wars vehicles are really nice.   I never got into those when they were in the stores.   But now that I have these 2, I really like them.   Nicely detailed.

The black and red car is Taejo Togokahn's car from Speed Racer made by Hot Wheels.  

This is the second plane that I have gotten like the one pictured.   The first one that I got is a greenish blue color and this one is silver.   There aren't any markings on the bottom of them, so I am not sure what company made them.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Thrift Finds of the week: JLU Weather Wizard and Dracula just to name a few...

I figured out why my Goodwill has been having a dry spell in the toy department.   They have gotten lazy.   Instead of putting toys on the shelves or taking the time to make bags o'fun they have been making these box lots and charging outrageous prices for them.   Despite this, I did manage to rearrange a bag to my liking.
One of the figures I picked up was a Ben 10 figure.  My son snatched that figure so quickly, I am lucky there isn't a blurr in the picture.  So that is probably the only picture you will see of it.  Since the group picture was a hot mess, I tried taking a few quick individual pictures.

I found the JLU Weather Wizard.   I wish that I could have found Livewire or the Superman that goes with him, but no luck.

Picked up a couple of Star Wars Transformers.  The small  jedi starfighter is on the lame side of Transfomers.  But, both will look good with my Star Wars

A 1997 Universal Monster Dracula from Burger King.  Universal Monsters are just cool always.    This one also glows in the dark.

A larger Green Lantern figure, I am not really feeling him.  So, he most
likely will be up for trade at some point.

Aquaman, Spiderman, and Duke minifigures (pictured above).    The little Aquaman is pretty much ruling the world right now.  I am loving him.   He is strutting his stuff, clearly he put on his sassy fins this morning.
 The small Riddler and Two-Face figures are from Happy Meals.  The Hulk mobile is pretty cool also.
 And lastly, a token Lanard was in the bag.   I mean what bag of fun isn't complete without a representative from CORPS?

League of Extraordinary Bloggers- Pop Culture Sleepover

League of Extraordinary Bloggers assignment for the week:

You have the opportunity to spend the night at any residence in pop culture. Where do you go?

There are so many places that I would want to visit and sleepover.   Narrowing it down to just one was difficult.   Brainstorming, I came up with about 30 different places.    Since I have always loved TV shows from the 60s and 70s, one house immediately came to mind.  

My first thought was that I would love to spend the night at the Addams' family house.  The house is gorgeous, even if it is slightly creepy.  I don't know that I would really sleep.   At a sleepover, do you really sleep anyway?   

I think the Addamses would be the perfect hosts.  You certainly wouldn't be bored.     You would be greeted at the door by Lurch, GRRRRRR.   Then Gomez and Morticia would engage you an interesting and absurd conversation until Lurch rings the gong signalling dinner is served.   Dinner might be a sketchy affair.   It might be best to take your own snacks, just in case.    After dinner,  I think joining the family on the front lawn for a little moonbathing  or some late night dynamite fishing with Fester, Wednesday, and Pugsly.    
  I would also like to have a harpsichord sing a long with Lurch.  

 I certainly would hope to have the opportunity to explore some of the other rooms in the house.   You know never what might be lurking.   Since sleeping with one eye open might be the best course of action, hanging out with Cousin Itt and Thing for a late night movie marathon would be a great way to finish off your stay.

I thought I would share some of the other residences that made my list.   

The Brady House-  I would like to eat Alice's famous pork chops and applesauce.  Maybe get a chance to play a little football.  I would love to pop Marcia in the nose (she always annoyed me anyway).  

Cloud City- play a few rounds of Just Dance 4 with Lobot and get some ice cream from the Cloud City ice cream man.  

Big Bang apartment-  I would like to hang out with Sheldon on Monday night for some Thia food. Hopefully, I could also get in on a taping of " Fun with Flags"

A night at Castle Greyskull-  I think the Sorceress would be addicted to Lifetime TV movies and tubs of popcorn.   

So where do other League members want to spend the night?

VikkiVerka wants to spend the night with Darla Dimples.

Rediscover the 80's wants a night in the Burbs. 
Rgendres had several places to crash
Nerd Rage Against the Machine wants to visit Tracy Island. 
Thirtyish Year Old Boy would like to visit Chuck.  
Vault of 3D sculpts wants to spend the night with the Munsters.

and don't forget to check out the League assignment page.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday-Where is Waldo?

                                                      Pretty sure we found him.  

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Thrift Find: Star Trek: The Voyage Home, just for boys?

Sometimes, I regret that they opened a Goodwill near my work.   That's where I spend the majority of my lunchtime.  I search the book shelves looking for priceless tomes of classic literature.   Not really, but it sounds good.  Right?  

Yesterday, no luck on classic literature.  Just a kid's novelization of Star Trek: The Voyage Home.  Perhaps, not the greatest of the older Star Trek films.  Although, I do think the movie has more comic relief to offer then some of the others.  I actually enjoy its absurdity.

What struck me about this book wasn't its subject matter or age.  It was the back of the book that caught my interest.

Where in large bold letters, proudly states: " JUST FOR BOYS"

Ok, wait a minute, WHAT??   I am not going to start a fangirl fueled rant about feeling excluded from Sci-fi fandom.  I never have felt that way, I liked what I liked and didn't really care or need to feel that acceptance.  
The book is actually some sort of  "Just for Boys"  Weekly Reader book club edition  I figure my son might enjoy reading it, even though we aren't really a "Trek" family.  


Monday, April 22, 2013

Awesome trades thanks to the League of Extraordinary Bloggers

Thanks to the League of Extraordinary Bloggers trading post, I was able to make some excellent trades.   Thanks to Eric at Toyriffic for sending me a surprise box in exchange for Despero.  

 He sent me an awesome assortment.  I am not sure who was more excited, myself or my children.   I love the Transformer and Star Wars figures.   My 8 year old son went nuts of the Inspector Gadget figures.  I  just recently introduced my children to the old Gadget cartoons.   My 5 year old daughter immediately laid claim to Batman, the Vampire Playmobile, and the Scooby Doo figure.   She loves Batman and anything slightly on the creepy side.

My second trade thanks to the League was with Chris at Stuntzombie.    He sent me this awesome Transformer in exchange for a Zuckuss.    I haven't gotten to finish my end of the trade due to the flood we had at our home.  Zuckuss was in my office, which was one of the rooms that got some water damage and is
currently packed up in a pod sitting in our driveway.     I  appreciate his patience and understanding.   Hopefully, it will only be one more week we are out of our home and then Zuckuss  will have a new home.    

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Hasbro's Fan Built Bot

For all you Transformer fans, if you haven't heard about this. Hasbro just recently 
announced that it will be giving kids and 
Transformer fans the opportunity to make the 
"Fan Built Bot".   
Votes will determine everything from the character being an Autobot or Decepticon to its vehicle or other mode, color, personality and more.  Fans will also be given the opportunity to have a say in the naming of the new character.   So, if you are a Transformer fan, vote daily.   

The results will be announced by Hasbro at 
this year's San Diego Comic Con as part of 
the official kick-off to Hasbro's 
Transformer's Thrilling 30 Anniversary.  

The "fan built bot" will be available for purchase as toy and will see the new character
 appear in the Transformers comic book.  

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Thrift Finds of the Week: A pissed off chicken and a whole lot of nothing!

 I know that I have really been complaining about there being very little to pick from at the local Goodwill.  I thought I would do a picture post about the level of despair going on at my local store.

I have come to the conclusion that "baby toys" are the gremlins of the toy world.   They are hard to destroy, you can't really ever get rid of them, and linger on Goodwill shelves forever!! (as illustrated)

You can pretty much hear the crickets chirping.

Even the knick-knacks are pissed off at the lack of selection.   This little chick was left behind, silently judging all that passed by his vantage point.

There is a happy ending for the silently judging chick, he does have a new home.    He will be joining the Easter/Spring decor at my home,  silently judging the alien rabbits.
The last item spotted this week just made me laugh.   I live in the South, so when winter comes around we are lucky to get maybe a 1/2 inch of snow each year.   The last 2 years, my kids have gotten cheated out of snow days because we haven't gotten so much as a flake.   

So, when I saw ice skates sitting in the display case, I had to ask, who the hell needs these?   We don't even have an ice skating rink.   There was the attempt last year to put an outdoor ice skating rink downtown during the holidays.   And it was well received, but it wasn't really a lot of fun, because NOBODY really knew how to ice skate.  It looked like some sort of blooper reel.   Every 5 seconds somebody fell down.    And to add to it, well, the temperatures didn't really scream winter wonderland.   

Obvious Cause of Death Ghost figures

I am giving a shameless shout out to the Lair of the Dork Horde.    Reis is  announcing the grand opening of his Obvious Cause of Death Ghost online store.      The store features little glow in the dark ghost figures with bullet holes, shark bites, and more.

These little guys really appeal to my sometimes dark and twisted sense of humor.    My personal favorites are "Mr. Yuck" (pictured from website) and "Take a deep breath"   I would love to add some of these little guys to my Halloween decor.

Be sure to check them out on Facebook as well.    You will get updates on newly released ghosts and behind-the-scenes  pictures.

Friday, April 19, 2013

It's that time of year, the Hallmark Ornament Wish Book is out

At our home, when the Hallmark ornament book comes out, the whole family gets excited.  What  started out as me buying 1 or 2 ornaments when I worked there briefly during high school, has steadily progressed to 10-15 ornaments a year.

So, what is on our wishlist for this year?  

I always buy the Star Wars ornaments.   This year's are all Return of the Jedi, with the exception of the Jango.  

The Ewoks are 17th in the Star Wars series.   I am happy to see these are regular sized ornaments.  I have the mini set, but  I am not a fan of them.   I wish they would redo Max Rebo,  Sny Snootles, and Droopy in the regular size.

 Both, Jabba and the AT-ST are magic ornaments, featuring dialogue and battle sounds. Yoda is the 3rd Lego figure ornament.

During the July ornament premiere, there is usually a limited release ornament that is available.   This year the ornament will be Boushh.   Last year's, limited release was Hammerhead.  I got so tickled at an older lady who was in the store picking out ornaments.   She said, "I don't know what this ugly thing is, but I guess I need to get him for my grandson."    So this year, I was really hoping they would make Admiral Ackbar.  I would have bought several.  

Other notables making our list:

Hogwarts Castle:  It is a magic ornament playing "Hedwig's theme" and has lighting effects when plugged into the lights.   The only downside to this one is that you have to plug it  into the lights.   The ornaments like that don't work very well on our pre-lit tree.

Buzz is on a mission:  It is a magic ornament, that when the button is pushed Buzz speaks.  In the wish book, it mentions that there is also a Spanish speaking version of  Buzz available in select stores.   I want a Spanish speaking Buzz!   So I am going to have to track down a store with this version.

The Joker:   My 5 yr. old daughter informed me that she needed the Joker to go with her Harley Quinn ornament.  And, well, who can argue with that logic?    It is a magic ornament that features some of the Joker's most memorable lines from "The Dark Knight".

Thursday, April 18, 2013

League of Extraordinary Bloggers- First Impressions

This week's League of Extraordinary Bloggers assignment:

You never get a second chance at a first impression–what moment in pop culture had you saying “Now, that’s how you make an introduction!”

For this assignment, I immediately thought of the original Star Wars, not the bastardized Special Editions.  Star Wars, for me as a kid,  was the first movie that rocked my world.   From the very beginning, the opening scene sets the stage.  Your senses are overwhelmed and almost every scene and character left you with a lasting impression.   

  Thinking about the opening scene, you have this little tiny ship overshadowed by this giant ship that keeps going and going.   Combined with the amazing movie score, you feel that little ship's sense of urgency.  The people on board have to escape and they can't. You want to know who they are and why is this happening.    No one had ever seen "space ships" that were as massive as the Star Destoryers.  

When it comes to the introduction of characters and the first impressions they make
there is one  who has the best introduction to the story. Yet,  this character's intro has become without question, the most highly debated element of pop culture.   

    Han Solo's introduction into the story isn't flashy.   There is no theme music with trumpets blaring as he walks through the door.    You immediately learn valuable information about his character.  Han  is a smuggler,who has a  little dark side.  Clearly, he isn't afraid to bend a few rules.  He is confident, overly confident? possibly, but you need his confidence and swagger.   And when Greedo shows up, Han having limited options available to him, he shoots first!!  He is a survivor.  Han takes risks and gets the job done.   You never heard Solo whining about going to Tosche station, you never heard Solo whine period.    

What kid, back in the day, wasn't immediately impressed by Han Solo?  As a kid,  I don't remember anybody fighting over being Luke, everybody wanted to be Han Solo!  Why?  because in our 4 year old minds, Han Solo = AWESOME!  He had the fastest ship in the galaxy and as a bonus, he had a 7 foot tall dog.     Impression made!

I loved the character as a kid.  As an adult fangirl, I freakin love Han Solo!  because he  is/was/ and will always be a bad boy with a heart of gold.   I chose Han as my first impression because like so many others, I am pissed because Lucas has tried to take it back.   You only get one chance to make a first impression and it is hard to take it back.   In this case, you can't ever take it back.  

Check out impressions from the rest of the League.  

Space for Rent shares first impressions of Superman. 

Nerd Rage Against the Machine shares first impressions of Dr. Who

GoodwillHunting4geeks shares first impressions of Thundercats.

And don't forget to check out the League assignment post 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I broke down and bought a China Girl doll

About 2 weeks ago, we took the whole family to see Oz the Great and Powerful.  As a general rule, I am anti 3D.  I just feel like it is a scam to boost movie grosses.   But, my husband thinks that it is worth it for most movies.  We spent an exorbitant amount of money to take 4 people to see a matinee movie and some snacks.  I    digress.  

The movie is visually stunning.   I do have to say that this is one of the rare occasions that paying extra for 3D was actually a good idea.   The story was good, but my only objection really is the pace of the movie.  I felt it was a little slow.

I had seen the different Oz dolls sitting on the shelves at Target and Toys R Us a couple of weeks before the
movie opened.   The China Girl doll has just been speaking to me.  Every time I saw her, I would stop and look at her.  I was just so drawn to her.   Well after seeing the movie, I was completely in love with her!  For me, she was the best character in the movie.  She reminded me a lot of both of my daughters.   If you haven't seen the movie yet, I don't want to give much away.

Since I had a couple of gift cards I decided that I would just break down and buy her.   She is beautifully detailed with cracks on her arms and legs.   Her dress is a soft satin like fabric with  ribbon and lace detailing.  

It took about 20 minutes to decide if I was going to open her or leave her in the box.   I just couldn't do it.  I had to open her.  Both of my girls have had their turns toting her around today,  And, I was surprised when my son was excited by her purchase.  But, he really did like the character in the movie too.  

Since I have been going through some Monster High withdrawals waiting for new dolls to show up,  China Girl has helped fill the void.   Priced around $20 she is well worth it.  

Thrift Find- Books, Books, and more books

The bags of fun have really been stinking it up. I know I have been complaining about this in my last few posts, but the bags have just been bad.   Where have all the good action figures gone?   Is no one's mother cleaning out their attics, garages, or kid's bedrooms?

Well, while the bags are terrible, the book section is on fire!  Last week, I picked up the vintage movie tie in E.T. novel.     On Monday, I picked up the  2 Golden Books pictured.

I love the Disney book but, I am most excited about the Rocky and Bullwinkel book.   How often to do you see Rocky and Bullwinkel anything?  It is kind of like Gumby.  There isn't enough Gumby in the world.   (Gumby is like a secret obsession I will have to write about at a later date.)

 I used to love that cartoon as a kid. It was on in the mornings while I would be getting ready for school.    I don't know why I liked it so much.  Looking back it was really kind of stupid, but I guess as kids we didn't know any better,

My son has really gotten into the Goosebumps book series.   So any time I find those books at the Goodwill,
I pick them up.   I found 3 that he didn't have.    Calling all Creeps, Monster Blood, and the one in the middle is kind of like the which way books.   Whenever I see them, I try to pick them up because he reads them so quickly.

Lastly, my daughter picked out  2 books for herself.  I really love the I -Spy and the "Can You See What I See?"  by Walter Wick.   A few years ago, our local library hosted an event and Walter Wick was one of the speakers.   He gave a talk about how he got started with the I-Spy books, his collection of toys and objects, and how he goes about staging the different photographs.   It was a really interesting lectures and it really made me appreciate his books even more.  

For a grand total of $3, I am really happy with the books we picked up.

Wordless Wednesday- Tiki's delicates

                 Since the flood at home, Tiki is having to wash his delicates at the laundry mat.   You can check out some of  Tiki's past adventures on his Tumblr page.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

My growing Ghostbusters collection

Ghostbusters was one of my favorite movies as a kid.   I remember going to see it in the movie theater like 6 times.  I never had any Ghostbuster toys at that time.  I do remember a friend from school, his little brother had like every Ghostbuster figure.   It was always fun playing at their house.  Mr. Staypuft has always been one of my favorite characters from the movie and the toy is equally my favorite from the toy line.

For a long time, I have resisted starting a GB collection.   But, I just couldn't resist any longer.   We went to a convention last October and that is when I decided to pick up a Staypuft.   Most of the time, when you find Staypuft, he already looks toasted. The one that I got was in decent shape and still white-ish.   A little cleaning with a magic eraser   Well, since I got Staypuft, I have been wanting to get the Ghostbusters themselves.    I picked Egon up at the flea market a few months ago.   Ray, Peter, and Louis I recently made a trade to get them and they arrived this past week.    

I am still looking for a Winston, Janine, and a Slimer.    Hopefully, I will find them soon.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Finds of the week- Hunger Games Barbie clearance, Creepy Freak figures, and a vintage E.T. book

This week has been really stressful.  We have still been dealing with the flood damage at home.  Thankfully, all of the tile will be going in this weekend.  So that leaves us just waiting on carpet.   I have learned from this whole experience, Lowes and Home Depot are rip offs when it comes to carpet.

Friday was the first day that I had been able to have a little fun.  So here is what I picked up:

My local Target had the Hunger Games Barbie on clearance.   I have never read the Hunger Game books and I thought the movie was ok.  I am not a huge fan though.   I mainly picked her up because the price was decent.  I may or may not keep her.  I might be able to trade her later on for something in Monster High.
The kids had been wanting to get some sidewalk chalk and water balloons so we went to the dollar store.  I picked up 1 box of these Creepy Freak game pieces.  I was curious because I don't really remember seeing these in stores.   They are from 2003 made by Wizkids.   Creepy Freaks are some sort of 3-D game pieces.  You can buy starter sets and then booster packs, which my store had both of.   Like all figure sets, some of the characters are better then others.   Some actually kind of remind me of Garbage Pail kids.  

 In the booster packs, you get 2 random figures attached to a game base.    The good news is that the figures will come off of the bases.

I haven't decided yet, but I might pick up a 2 or 3 more boxes just for fun.  They can always end up being some accessory pieces for the Monster High dolls.

After Target and the Dollar Store, I even got a quick trip into the Goodwill.   Although, lately when I walk in the door,  I hear crickets and see tumble weeds rolling through the toy section.    It went from awesome to dry spell really fast.   The book section has stayed pretty consistent and I can usually find some good books. This week, I picked up the book club edition of E.T.  I really  love finding these vintage movie tie in novels.
For .50 you can't beat it.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

League of Extraordinary Bloggers- Pop Culture Hate!

The discussion topic for the week:

                       What piece of pop culture did you HATE as a kid?

There is a lot of hatred going around for the Joes and their lack of aim. Don't forget that Stormtroopers couldn't hit a barn either.  This was a hard topic for me.  Growing up in the 80's it was the best of times and the worst of times for toys.   It seems like the toys that I really didn't like as a kid have either made a come back or never really ever went away.

She seems innocent enough right?    Yet, I despise this doll and her kind with every fiber of my being.

Growing up, I never really liked baby dolls.  I had my fair share of Barbies and the suspicious Strawberry Shortcake.  When it came to baby dolls, I really hated the ones that peed and pooped.   I mean Baby Alive really should be called Baby Shits and Giggles.  Don't sugar coat it.  That's what it does. For some girls, those dolls are all fun and games.   I remember my friend Jennifer from kindergarten, had one of these dolls.  "Let's feed it and see what happens"she would gleeful exclaim. This happened every time I went to her house to play.  I guess Jennifer wasn't the brightest crayon in the box.    It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out what happens next.   .
Let's explore the wonders of poop... No thank you!

 Taking a stroll down those "pink" isles, there are so many things worthy of hate.  "Boy" toys have always just been cooler to play with.  Tranformers, StarWars, Batman, etc.  Why, Why don't little girls have cooler toys?   If you think about it, all girl toys are doing something with cooking or cleaning or they are  ridiculously mind numbingly happy.   Most of the cutesy dolls are wide eyed and hsve this annoying shit eating grin on thier face.  I mean just think about it.  Strawberry Shortcake,  Care Bears, My Little Ponies, Rainbow Bright, Get Along Gang, Shirt Tales, Poochi, Monchichis,  the list goes on and on.    Nobody is that effing happy and if they are, well you know that underneath that exterior, they are hiding some unholy shenanigans.

While my hate post isn't filled with as much venomus hate as others from around the league, check out the posts from:

Feel the hate coming from BubbaShelby 

and Monsterfink has no love for the good guys.

And don't forget to check out the assignment post, more hatred to come.

A collectors worst nightmare! We had a flood at our home this weekend

This weekend, the Satan seed of a washing machine, we currently own, decided it was going to spew water.   I had started a load of laundry and the machine never stopped filling.   By the time we realized what was happening, the laundry room, hallway, part of our master bed room, and into the kitchen were flooded.   To compound the situation, I spent spring break trying to spring clean.  I had boxes
the view from the hallway
and bags of clothing all marked for donation.   All got wet!

Thankfully, none of our carded figures or costume pieces got ruined.  My husband did lose a few autographs from his collection, but thankfully those can be easily replaced. Things could have been a lot worse.  Needless to say, our home is in chaos.   We have spent yesterday and today packing our collections and the rest of our home.  Everything will be boxed away until the repairs are completed.

The people from Servepro have been awesome and our insurance company had been very helpful.  
We are trying to stay as positive as we can, which sometimes isn't the easiest thing to do.  But, the kindness of others certainly goes a long  way.  Today, at lunchtime, I had run to pick up some food for my husband and myself.   The lady who was in front of my in the drive thru paid for our lunch.  Her random act of kindness was extremely touching, especially when life has thrown us a whole bag of lemons.

I would just encourage everyone to perform a random act of kindness,  you never know when somebody really needs it.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Gumball Machine Fun: Homies

I am doing a lazy post tonight, you will understand when you see my post tomorrow.   I was going through some boxes and came across a handful of Homies.  Back in like 2003-2004, OMG! I could not pass a Homies gumball machine without stopping and getting at least 3 or 4.  I absolutely love these figures.   Over the years though, some of my Homie collection has gotten away.  I guess my kids have them somewhere, who knows?

This is my current collection: (left to right: (2) Budha, Grumpy, Laughing Boy, Scarecrow,  Conejo, Gato , Topo  (middle) Ice Block.   Now the one in the pink jacket with the blue pants is not a real homie.   He must be a  knock off Homie or possibly a Palermo (Homies Italian cousins)

Anyway, these figures were somewhat controversial when they first came out.    Many believed that they glorified a gang life style.   I never really saw them that way.   To me, they were like a re-magined   Fat Albert and the gang,   The line was revamped and each character was given a more "PC" back story.

The Homies website has a catalog of all 12 sets that is great for identifying your favorite Homies.   I haven't seen Homies in gumball machines in a few years now.  There are several that I hate I missed over the years.

Do you have any Homies?  Which one is your favorite?

Friday, April 5, 2013

Collection Picture Post- My top 10 unusual Star Wars Items

I was talking with some friends and I posed the question, "What are the top 10 unusual Star Wars items  you have in your collection?"      This was kind of a tricky question.   For example, we all have action figures, but,  Do you count the Stromtrooper that you carried 24/7 for most of your formative years?    or  Do you count those really rare items that only 10 were ever made and you had to win a contest to get?    or  Do you count a bootleg item your great aunt Sally found while on vacation in Mexico and brought it back to you as a souvenir?  

In a galaxy so mass produced, What makes a Star Wars item unusual?   It was hard to come up with items!    I chose my items based on several things.  1.)  Is the character overly popular like Vader or Fett or is it more of a supporting character?    2.)  How often do you see the item in someone else collection, on Ebay, etc?   3.)   How easy or difficult was it to obtain?
4.)  If it is homemade, how much, blood, sweat or tears went into making it? and lastly, 5.) Does the item have a sentimental attachment?

So here is my list, in no particular order:

Me with Tim Rose
1.) Admiral Ackbar costume-  There isn't really anything unusual about a costume.  But, I count this one for 2 reasons.  There are not many people who do Admiral Ackbar costumes, and even fewer who are women.   I get asked a lot, "Why did  you choose to do that costume?"    The answer is simply that I wanted to do a masked costume.   I have a Tusken costume, but I hate it.   The last time I wear it was very early on during my pregnancy and I thought I was going to die.    Not that Ackbar is much better with all the latex.  It doesn't breathe well.    I did attempt to wear Ackbar  early in my pregnancy as well, but only for short periods of time.     I have worn it since having my baby but I had extra weight I hadn't lost yet and some big boobs (see photo).   At the time,  it was really hard to strap them down like I usually do.     It is funny to see an Ackbar with some lovely lady lumps.  But, I had to wear it to meet Tim Rose.  The opportunity was too great to pass up.

The mask was purchased off of Ebay.    It was made by a guy in Utah, who made the mask to be used in a fan film.  The same guy has had other items on Ebay that were amazing.   The hands were purchased from another source, which my husband and I painted.

2.) Vintage footwear:  I bought this pair of Princess Leia Clark's shoes in 2000 off of Ebay.  The shoes have never been worn..  This was back in the day when my husband and I had just met, thanks to a Star Wars chat room.    So he had a front row seat to a lot of my unusual Ebay purchases.    A few of which have made this list.    He never really has understood why I go after certain items, I say why not?      The box is great! I love the vintage graphics.  I remember having shoes like these as a kid, but not as cool because they weren't Star Wars.  These shoes keep the 70's alive! They are complete with the an un-punched hang tag.   I am just waiting for the day that they will fit my daughter, no I am not going to let her wear them.  I just would like to take a picture of her trying them on.

3.) Marketing booklets-    I have 2 of these marketing booklets for the Phantom Menace.  One is from Walmart.  It diagrams all of their toy displays and cross promotional items.  It is amazing to look at and see how much retail space Star Wars took up in 1999.    The second book (not pictured) that I have is from KFC.  It talks about the game promotions, collector cup sells, and kid's meal toys.   And, of course, how the employees are supposed to encourage extra purchasing.   When my husband and I first got married, he worked for 11 KFC stores and traveled between them.   It was also great because he had access to their storage building.   One day, he called me and said I am bringing home some Star Wars leftovers.  He got to bring home leftover cups, toys, and display pieces.

4.) Macrame  R2-D2 towel holder-   This is another one of those crazy finds off of Ebay.   This thing is all things great about the late 70s, early 80s. Macrame and Star Wars!!  All wee need is some shag carpet.   I picture somebody's Aunt Shirley making the macrame and painting the R2 for an awesome Christmas gift.    The R2 is one of those paint your own pottery pieces.   I remember my mom and her sisters doing stuff like that. before cool places like Hearts of Clay popped up.    The place they went was in the basement of somebody's house. It was kind of creepy.

I love kitchy stuff so this was perfect for me!

R2-AL and my favorite Vader (my husband)

R2-AL with the Team Fox Delorian
5.) R2-AL  We built our own R2 unit.   Not everyone has the means or interest to build their own R2 unit.  My husband decided he wanted to tackle the project.  It has taken 4 years of working on it on and off.  Yes, there were some blood, sweat, and tears involved.  But in the end it was a worth while project and we love it.   R2-AL is named for our family and we jokingly call it our 4th child.   He greets everyone at the front door of our home.

6.) Bootleg china thimbles  from England-  Yet again another Ebay purchase.   I won almost all of the thimbles that the seller had listed.  Only the C-3PO got away.    These are from the late 70s, early 80s.    What makes these interesting is that there is one with Tarkin and one with Dodonna.  None of the licensed memorabilia from that time period featured these characters.    Solo looks  cromagnon, it isn't very flattering.

7.)  Stormtropper Room Guard from the soap opera Port Charles.   From 1996-2008 Disney held an event at MGM Studios called Super Soap Weekends.   Think Star Wars weekends, just with soap opera actors from the shows on ABC.   You could meet the actors and get autographs.  One of the greatest things about Super Soap Weekend was a little store that was set up called, Soap Central.   You could purchase costumes and props from the different shows.   My sister and I were regular attendees of SSW and I would drop a large amount of money in Soap Central.

 I purchased the Stormtrooper in 2000.  When I saw it sitting in the shop, I knew I had to have it.   It was used as a prop on Port Charles.   The story line was that Neil, a young kid had leukemia.    He was also a Star Wars fan.   In his room, you would randomly spot Star Wars items.   The trooper is actually one of the electronic room guards that has been weathered.

8.  12 inch Princess Leia doll-   Ok, so I know you are probably saying there is nothing unusual about that.   Well, this doll is mine.  I have had her since I was 3 years old.   Santa brought her and the 12 inch Luke that year for Christmas.   Here is my sentimental favorite.  I had this nervous tick or oral fixation. I am not exactly sure what you would call it. I just know that I would chew on my dolls and well, I ate her foot off.  I am not proud of this, but I love this doll just the same.    

9.  Star Wars Attack on Reading  I got this book off of Ebay also.  The copyright for this book is 1979.  It is a book to help students with reading comprehension.   You know, you read a passage and then answer questions about what happened in the story.    Being that I am a preschool teacher, I love stuff like this.

Ackbar protesting the local Long John Silver's

10.) Admiral Ackbar bowling pin-     So kitchy Star Wars craft items have made the list more then once.  But, who doesn't want an Admiral Ackbar bowling pin?   I made him for a contest our local county fair sponsored last year.   I thought for sure the squidy awesomeness would at least place, but noooo!  Admiral Ackbar was beat out by a bowling pin sock monkey and a crappy farmer!  Whatever, I am over it!  So now he makes an awesome bookend and part time activist.

What are your favorite or unusual Star Wars items?   Feel free to leave a comment or if you feel like doing a post on this topic, please share your link.  I love to see what other people have in their collections.