American Girl Julie’s Back to School dress & an update on Sara’s knitting…

A few days ago I asked my readers to vote for who they wanted to see in my first “Back to School” dress. Well, my 13″ Dianna Effner’s won first place, with “School Girl Charm”…It’s already been on Ebay and sold.


Molly received the next highest number of votes and I made her “The First Day of School”….


Her auction is running right now on Ebay… (HERE)

The next doll who came in third place was Julie. She takes us back to the 1970’s and I’ve found a sweet little dress that I’m hoping to copy from my 1974 pattern book.


I came up with some pattern pieces that I’m hoping will fit together and picked out a pretty pink paisley print for Julie’s dress…



I made a little bit of headway on it and wanted to share with you the beginning of her dress.



I may have gotten more done on it but Sara’s mom and dad invited us over to their house to celebrate our “One Year Anniversary” of being friends with them. (If you want to read about Sara and her family, just type in Sara in the search box and all the posts that mention her name will come up.)

It doesn’t seem possible that one year ago today we picked them up from the hotel and a wonderful friendship blossomed. We had a very nice evening remembering things and looking at pictures, and telling stories. The food was fantastic too!

I took over the patterns that Anita had sent in her box for Sara and gave them to her. Sara ran into her room and came out with the knitted purse that she made. She just taught herself to knit and this was the first thing she’s made. I wanted to take a few pictures of it and show you. This is so amazing that 12 months ago she couldn’t speak any English and now she’s reading knitting instructions.




She’s very proud of it! I found a flower loom at the Thrift Store the other day. It was from Hobby Lobby and still had the price tag on it…$19.99. I got it for $2.99 thinking Sara might enjoy it. I took it over tonight with a couple skeins of yarn and before dinner she had it out and was trying to figure out how to make the yarn flowers… I’m sure she’ll figure it out!
Oh, and I found out tonight she is in band now and wants to learn how to play the saxophone! I’m sure she’ll get it mastered!

See you tomorrow,
Blessings, Jeanne

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  1. Linda Doyle says:

    Darling dress for Julie, Jeanne! Reminds me of the kind I would sew for my daughter when she started school in 1975. Molly’s type dress was more what I would wear, although a lot of those dresses and outfits are timeless. Julie will be the apple of the teacher’s eye in that dress! Can’t wait to see it finished.

    Again, that little Sara is really something! She really does it all!

    • HI Linda,
      Thanks for the compliment on Julie’s dress. As I looked in my pattern book, I can’t remember if I ever owned this pattern and made something from it or not. I think it’s an adorable pattern and wonder if I didn’t, how did I ever miss it…

      Yes, Sara is something and just as sweet as she is cute. She has a darling little voice and so very friendly. Yesterday her family went to the place where the new students come into before starting at our university, and they were helping them out; giving rides to Wal Mart, showing them where the banks are, the grocery stores, helping them learn how the traffic flows on our streets…just like we did with them last year when they arrived here.
      It was a wonderful “pay it forward” moment for them…
      Thanks Linda,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  2. Anita Hayes says:

    One can see in Sara’s eyes how proud she was of her knitted purse. Does my old heart good to see a little one so eager to learn the crafts we were taught when we were children. I was only 6 yrs old when my great grandmother began to teach me needlework – first embroidery, then knitting, then crocheting and when I could run the old treadle sewing machine – sewing. Jeanne you need to be commended for helping this child to learn the skills which she will use her entire life. I am sure you will miss her when she leaves. But I am sure too she will always remember the wonderful lady who taught her to sew.

    • HI Anita,
      Yes, Sara was quite proud of that little purse she knitted. She also loved the new patterns you sent to her. She won’t have as much time to spend sewing, but I’m sure she’ll get to some of them. I’ll be sure and keep everyone posted.
      All those grandmothers need to be commended for taking time to show us sewing skills. I didn’t have a grandmother who showed me anything, but my mom encouraged me to sew, so I did! She kids me and says”I taught her how to sew…”
      Thanks Anita,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  3. Marilyn Grotzky says:

    Anita is right. Sara will remember you forever and appreciate the skills you taught her, and she’ll use those skills for her whole life.

    Here’s a question you may want to enter in your column. When you pay on Etsy, does the seller get more money if you go through Paypal or if you put the payment on your credit card? Also, does the seller get more money if you pay cash on Paypal or if you put it on a credit card? Don’t spend time researching this if you don’t know the answer without research.

    • HI Marilyn,
      I hope Sara leaves here with so many skills she is way ahead of the little girls back in Columbia. I’m sure she will.
      Marilyn, if the seller sells something on Etsy, there is just the price of listing the item… which is .20 cents, and the item will be in your Etsy shop for four months. If it doesn’t sell and you choose to relist it, it’s another .20 cents. If it sells you have a smaller sellers fee that what Ebay charges. There is no Final Value Fee, based on how much the item sold for, like there is on Ebay. There is also no fee for having a shop, like there is on Ebay.
      The Etsy fee for an item sold is 3.5% of the selling price.
      The seller supposedly gets their money immediately when someone pays with Paypal, however I have found that it’s usually 2-4 days before it shows up in my account. If the buyer used Direct Checkout, (using a credit card), there is usually a 3-5 day delay. It varies by country, but to the United States, there is a 3% + .25 for each transaction. It’s all about the same to me, so I accept both.
      Thanks Marilyn,
      Blessings, Jeanne

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