Started off the day with breakfast, then moved onto dressing the dolls for August's (normally) hotter weather. Samantha, Molly, Whitney, and Jessa all get bathing suits and sandals or slippers. Sam's in the second version of her 1904 Bathing Dress with the white and blue cap and black Springfield Collection tights. Whitney gets the navy and white polka dot Springfield Collection suit and white Swiss lace sandals. Molly's wearing her tropical-print peach 1944 Bathing Suit and green towel. Jessa is ready for Hawaii in the mid-2000's AG Island Luau magenta-and-blue print suit.
Josefina and Felicity come from time periods where bathing and swimming weren't considered ladylike. I opted for summer frocks for them instead. Josefina sports her floral Party Dress (without the heavy black Spencer jacket) and matching beige moccasins. Felicity's wearing her lavender "Traveling Gown" with the embroidered flowers (aka her second "meet" outfit) and the wide green and pink ribbon-trimmed straw hat from Elizabeth's Summer Gown.
Headed out to run errands shortly after I finished with the AGs. It was still cloudy and cool when I left, though not anything resembling as humid as it was yesterday. I still brought my brown, white, and orange umbrella along as a precaution. First stop was the Oaklyn Library. They were surprisingly busy for a decent day, with one family doing summer school work in the children's area, and adults having annoying political discussions in the main room (even after the librarian got fed up with CNN and switched the TV off). I organized the DVDs, which were a mess, particularly the adult titles. Between how long that took and the kid doing work in the children's area, I decided to just head out after about 40 minutes.
Went across the White Horse Pike to the House of Fun next, just for the heck of it. They were pretty busy for quarter of 1 on a weekday. A lot of people must have been exploring on their breaks, including a family with a middle-grade-school-age son. I eyed a few Star Wars action figures and the Force Awakens older Han and Leia Funko Pop bobble heads, but ultimately decided to save my money for vacation.
Next stop was Jalapeno's Grill a few blocks down the Pike for lunch. They were quite busy for them, with several groups enjoying their inexpensive lunch specials. I had the vegetable quesadilla, with refried beans and Spanish rice. The beans and rice were probably from a can and a mix, but the quesadilla was really good, filled with lots of big, fresh vegetable pieces and a ton of cheese.
Went across the street next to WaWa for dessert. I wanted some caffeine, so I went with the Mocha Mint Smoothie. It was a little too much mocha, just a tad too bitter. Even so, I gulped up as I headed down Manor and towards home.
Despite the sun coming out at this point, I really had no other outdoor plans for the day. I spent the rest of the afternoon writing...or trying to. The Internet went down as soon as I got on. I didn't get it. This time, there were obviously no storms around. The online light was still on. I gave up and finally called Comcast. All they could tell me was there was nothing wrong on their end...and I should probably switch back to Windows 8.1. Ironically, the internet came back on shortly after I called them.
Honestly, I may do that tomorrow. It went down again briefly tonight. I really don't want to mess around with updating drivers I know nothing about.
I did manage to get some writing in. Leia and Chewbacca finally follow the currents to the center of the maze, a beautiful gold and silver garden. Unfortunatly, along with the gold and silver and jewels that belong to her family, Leia also finds a hideous sea monster, a nasty beast with a long, spiny tail, sharp teeth, and ridged skin...or is he? Chewbacca won't harm him, and Leia's not sure she wants to, either. The Beast's hazel eyes are sad and heartbroken...and very human.
When I finally broke for dinner, I finished Goldie & Bear while making Blackberry Chocolate Chip Muffins, my first baking in a while. "Pinocchio-itis" is a condition that makes one's nose grow when they lie. This becomes a bit of a problem when Goldie has to keep a secret from Bear for his parents. "The Clubhouse that Jack Built" is a club for boys named Jack only, including Bear (whose first name is Jack). That may sound like fun for the boys, but it alienates Goldie and their friends. When Goldie starts a club for anyone named anything, the Jacks begin to realize that they miss their friends and siblings.
"The Egg" falls from a beanstalk. Bear wants to keep what hatches from it, but it really belongs with its mother. Bear's "Golden Kickball" gets stuck in the yard of the Candy Witch, who supposedly turns children into gingerbread! Bear just wants his ball back. He and Goldie learn a lesson in appearances when they go after the ball...and discover the witch isn't nearly as scary as the rumors claim.
Bear and Goldie are surprised at the size of their babysitter when Bear's parents go out for the evening. But Thumbelina proves that size really matters not when she takes the kids on an adventure in "Thumbelina's Wild Ride." When the Big Bad Wolf accidentally blows down his own home, he becomes a "Big Bad Houseguest" who drives Humpty Dumpty crazy and refuses to leave, even after the Three Little Pigs rebuild his home.
Switched to The BoxTrolls while turning the Sloppy Joes from Julie's Cooking Studio into Chicken Cheeseburger Rice Skillet Casserole with the addition of leftover brown rice and the last of the cheddar cheese. The Box Trolls are small, grotesque-but-harmless creatures who live under an English town in the early 1900's. They scavenge trash, including boxes, from the town to live. Like Goldie with the Candy Witch, the townspeople believe the rumors that they're awful creatures who eat people and steal children. In truth, they're more afraid of humans than they are of them...but one finds a baby in the trash and does raise him. Years later, the boy, whom they call Eggs after the box he wears, comes to the surface when all of his troll friends go missing. He meets a young girl named Winnie, the daughter of the town's magistrate, and a group of men in red hats who are bent on destroying the trolls and gaining entrance into the town's cheese-obsessed inner circle. While Winnie explains to Eggs what he really is, the two discover that the trolls are alive...but not for much longer, if the Red Hats use their new, more powerful weapon on them...
This stop-motion tale was a very strange fish-out-water story. At times, it was a tad grotesque, especially in the design of the villains. On the other hand, the relationships between Eggs and the Trolls and Eggs and Winnie were very sweet. I liked how they handled the slightly cliche "fish out of water/raised by animals/don't judge a book by its cover" story, too, especially the surprise ending and how they ultimately eliminate the villain. The steampunk designs are nifty as well.
It's a little strange and dark for younger kids, but for older kids on up, this is a very intriguing tale of belonging and finding one's place that's worth a look if you loved other stop-motion semi-horror stories like Coraline or The Corpse Bride.