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Travelog for: Riin and Eri

Riga, Latvia - 8th May 2011

By: Daeriin

Introducing my two cute friends who are always looking for hosts are really love to travel!
Greetings from Riin and Eri all ready to go on their big adventure.
Riin the Dreamer is a bit older than Eri. She (yes, that's a she, though Riin has short hair and often dresses as a boy) has a pet cat you can also see in the pictures. She loves music, to explore new things, go for a walk in the evenings and weirdness. And she and her Cat love everything mysterious, so they often search for spirits, mystical beings and love to attend traditional festivals.
Eri the Romanticist is more feminine than Riin. She has a pet polar owl. She loves everything beautiful, blue color, horse riding and having fun in a hayloft (like making cool back-flips and landing on it... pluff ^^). So basically she likes soft and fluffy things. :] Eri often tags along with Riin on her mystical adventures.
They both love to eat and especially sweets, so they'd be happy if you can treat them to some dessert.

Riin and Eri would love to see&do:
- Visit some scary place in your hometown
- See the Great Wall of China
- Take part in some traditional festival
- Take part in a traditional dance
- Visit a temple or a shrine
- Visit some old and famous cemetery
- See the Statue of Liberty, the Big Ben and other famous places and UNESCO spots
- Cosplay
- Take a photo with a person in a traditional costume
- Take a photo with a geisha/geiko/maiko
- Try a tasty dessert or take cooking lessons
- Go on a concert or a jam session
- See the Carnival
- Spend a day at your working place or school
- Visit a traditional market
- See hanami (cherry blossom viewing)
- Climb Mt. Fuji
- Play croquet
- Visit the Sherlock Holmes' and other famous museums
- Ride a turtle
- Learn to fly
- Visit a planetarium
- Have a boxing match with a hamster/rabbit or something fluffy
- See a sunset/sunrise on top of a skyscraper
- Have a ride in a gondola
- See a double rainbow
And many many more...


* Posted Jun 6, 2011, 5:39 pm Last edited Jun 6, 2011, 5:56 pm by Daeriin [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Grand Haven, MI, USA - 16th May 2011

By: kessalia

Hello! We're sorry we have not written earlier, but we have been having so much fun and seeing so many things!

When we first arrived, Mel was getting ready for her trip to Canada. We started with a shorter trip, to the grocery store.

This is the cereal aisle.


This is the meat and seafood counter.

And this is the produce area for fruits and vegetables. This is where we spent most time. :)


Then we went back to Mel's house and helped her and her other toys put in the garden!

We helped to pull weeds.

Here we are with the whole work crew, including Buzz the Bluejay, Dan and Amanda, and Vanilla. Vanilla is a ToyVoyager from California.

We will write more soon! We have a lot to show you from the Canada trip!

* Posted Jun 6, 2011, 8:03 pm Last edited Jun 6, 2011, 8:04 pm by kessalia [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

On the Road!, USA and Canada - 19th May 2011

By: kessalia

Hello!  We finally got all packed up and ready to go off to Toronto, ON for Mel's friend's wedding!

Drew from George etc., Vanilla and Buzz Bluejay went with us.  Mel drove, we kept her company on the long drive!

We stopped for a stretch at a rest area while still in Michigan.  We walked a bit and found this memorial.  We learned a lot reading it.


We got closer to Port Huron, MI and started seeing signs for Canada!  We were all so excited we climbed up on Mel's lap for a better view, but she said she couldn't drive that way and put us in the window.  All except Drew, who was too big, but he could stand on the passenger seat and see anyway.


We had wait behind big trucks to pay the toll for the bridge.  It was $3!  But the view from the Blue Water Bridge to Canada was lovely! 

We got over the bridge, but then had a LONG wait to go through the Canadian customs.  Finally it was our turn next!  Mel entertained us by making us laugh by making up stories about the people in cars near us and trying to guess what they were going to Canada for.


Us toys stayed quiet so the lady wouldn't think to ask US for passports too, and finally Mel got let through.  Then we were Canada!  We asked to stop at the Duty Free Shop, but Mel laughed and said that we didn't need booze and bad perfume, which is mostly what they sold.


Then there was more long driving.  We got back down on the seat and looked through some of Mel's notebooks while she drove across Ontario.  We finally stopped for a break in Brantford, and at the visited center there we found out that it is the home town of many famous people!  The two Mel knew right away were Alexander Graham Bell, who is known for inventing the telephone, and Wayne Gretsky, a great hockey player.  Buzz got excited and wanted to see something else to do with Gretsky, so Mel drove us a short ways to the training arena he made for the town. We didn't go in but saw a lot of people of all ages going in to play hockey.


Then we got back in the car and went east some more!  Here we are coming through Hamilton, which made Mel happy because they have rocks.  This mountain is made up of the same rocks that Niagara Falls runs over.  We saw signs to go to the Falls, but Mel said later.  We had to wait until after the wedding for that, she said, because she had to pick up friends at the airport at 7:30 and the falls are still an hour or more away from here.


Before we even got to go to the hotel, we went to the airport, since it was kind of on the way.  We knew we were getting close when an airplane flew right over the road we were on!


We got to the airport and parked, and then had to wait and wait for Mel's Friends, Arno and Christie, to get through customs after their flight from Amsterdam.  The local museum had a display there - Dinosaurs!  This is an Allosaurus!


We also met two very sweet and cute little girls, who wanted to meet us toys.  We told them our stories and they promised to come to he site to see our blogs, if they could remember the name after all of the excitement of their grandfather coming from Germany.  They gave us cuddles while we waited, it was nice!


Finally our friends arrived, and the hotel was found, and the baggage was unloaded.  Arno and Christie needed to eat, so we walked down to the street to a burger place.  It was decorated like an old fashioned American diner.


There they had an old jukebox I wanted to explore, but I didn't do much because we were all SO tired after our long day!


Then it was off to bed.  Mel set us up on the windowsill so we cold see the lights of the city, but we fell asleep pretty quickly.  We are told tomorrow is exploring the city, and picking more friends up from the airport! 

* Posted Jun 6, 2011, 10:31 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Toronto, ON, Canada - 20th May 2011

By: kessalia

Hello again!  Our first full day in Toronto started nice and relaxing, as we stayed in the hotel while Mel and her friends went shopping for the wedding gifts, and picked up more friends from the airport.  But by the afternoon the three people in the room had grown to six, and we had some time left to go sightseeing! 

We walked a few blocks to a train station, then rode to the station closest to the waterfront.  Our goal was the CN tower! 

We took this photo outside the train station.  It was already getting dark!


It was a long climb and elevator ride up the tower.  On the wy we passed this security moose, who was dressed as a Canadian Mountie!


Finally we reached the first of the two viewing levels.  This one had a glass floor you could look straight down through!  This is Roger's Field, where the baseball team The Toronto Bluejays were playing a ball game! 


Another level up was glassed in to see the horizon.  It was tricky to get a good photo, but you can see the city light beyond and below us! 


The ball game let out just as the tower closed and we had to leave, so the trains were very crowded heading back to the hotel, but we made it okay.  Then we went right to bed, because we knew the next day everyone would have to wake up early to get dressed up for the wedding.

* Posted Jun 7, 2011, 6:14 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Mississauga, ON, Canada - 21st May 2011

By: kessalia

Hello!  Today is wedding day for Anne and Chris!  Everyone in our room woke up early and got dressed up fancy.  Mel had a new dress with polka dots!

We dolls didn't get to go to the wedding, though.  Mel says it was at a very pretty church.  Mel and her friends got there a little late, and everyone had to leave right after the ceremony because there was another wedding right after!  So Mel and her friends came back to the hotel and got ready to drive to Mississauga for the reception.  It was only a short way away, but there was road construction closing off the freeway, so all the cars were crammed onto the lakeshore drive, so it took a lot longer!

We were the only dolls who got to go to the reception, because we were small enough to fit into Mel's camera case.  The other dolls missed a lot, the reception was incredible! 

The table were decorated very nicely.  We climbed the centerpiece for a better view.


There was a ton of food, and then dancing!  We danced a bit too, because it was fun music and we could!


We visited the cake before it was cut.  Very pretty! The Bride's cousin made and decorated it.


There was also a cake that she had made for the groom.  He loves his motorcycle. 


After all of the appetizers, we were surprised to get dinner too, but everyone had plates full of prime rib!


And then there were dancing girls from a local  revue show.  They got everyone back on the dance floor to burn off those big steaks!
Eri found a feather from one of their costumes and wore it herself.


We even got to dance with the bride!  Anne was very nice, and quite lovely.  :)


And then t the end, after everything else, was MORE food!  :o  This time, all dessert, including a piece of the wedding cake, for luck, and some dipped candies from a chocolate fountain!


Finally no one could eat any more, or dance another step.  We all rode back to Toronto and our hotel at about 1am, and crashed into bed.  Mel's other dolls kept asking for details, but we were so tired, we told them we would tell them later, on the way to Niagara falls!

* Posted Jun 8, 2011, 3:14 am Last edited Jun 8, 2011, 4:45 am by kessalia [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Niagara Falls, ON, Canada - 22nd May 2011

By: kessalia

Hello!  After a late night at the wedding it was tempting to sleep in, especially since it was a holiday, Victoria Day in Canada.  But no, that woudl mean missing a world Wonder, so off we went on a road trip to Niagara Falls! 

We did nap a bit in the back seat with Jenn, but when we got there we wanted to see everything! 

First mel got us lost trying to find where to meet Robert and the other car, but we did get to see the Whirlpool area, which is downstream from the falls.


When we finally found the downtown area and a good parking place, we walked towards the main tourist area of the city.  There were big attractions ande museums and oddball things all over!  We just had time to see the falls themselves though, so we just walked past.


It was a bit rainy, very windy, and kind of cold along the river, but through teh mist we finally got our first glimpse of the falls!  This is the American Falls, one of the two main waterfalls as the river splits around an island. 


We kept walking upstream along a walkway, and had many nice views of the American Falls.  That is the State of New York, USA there on the other side of the river, and since we were in Canada, also a whole different country!


We both enjoyed the view while everyone took photos.


All of a sudden there was a break in the clouds and fog and we could see upstream to Horseshoe Falls, the most famous part of the falls.  Wow!  It looks big even from this far away!


It was a long walk to get closer, but since Mel was carrying us it didn't take as long.


Finally here we are almost to the edge of the falls! 


It is still foggy, and the falls make a lot of wind themselves, and water spray, of course, makes everything damp, but we braved it for the view from the very edge.


But we weren't done yet!  We walked back to the beginning and then down to the boat docks, to ride on The Maid of the Mist!  At the start of the boat trip, it didn't look much different, but the way all of the people were wrapped up in blue raincovers made us think it wouldn't stay that way!


Here we come right up near the base of the American Falls!


But we kept going, to nearly the base of Horsefalls, too!  There was so much water in the air that Mel's camera could hardly see anything, but it was so incredible!  You could feel the boat's engine fighting against the current of the water, and the noise, and the water everywhere, it was amazing!  :D


We were more than a little damp after all fo that, but we couldn't have stayed in the bag for anything, and missed that view!  We did sleep most all of the way back to Toronto, though, warm in a sunbeam to dry us off.  We only stopped once, at a shipwreck along Lake Ontario, because Mel wanted a photo.


Then Mel and all of her friends went back out again, for dinner and games with the bride and groom.  they stayed out so late that when Jenn and Celo had to leave early the next morning, all the rest went right back to sleep after seeing them off!  Mel finally woke up about noon and drove us home.  She was tired enough from all of the fun that we didn't stop many places, but that was okay, we were tired too!  What a fun trip!  :D

* Posted Jun 12, 2011, 9:07 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Dearborn, MI, USA - 30th May 2011

By: kessalia

Hello!  It is Memorial Day weekend in the USA, and Mel had a surprise for us all!  We spent the weekend at the World Steam Expo in Dearborn, MI.  It's a Steampunk Convention!  It was very strange and fun!

The first day that Mel took us was she didn't dress up, but went mostly to hear the band that was playing that night.  We went to the concert for the group Tartanic.  They had bagpipes, and Mel and her friends danced a lot!  The light wasn't good for toy photos, but here's one of the band Mel took.


By then it was past our bedtime, so we headed back to Mel's best friend Shannon's house for the night, knowing the next day we would be up early to go back!

This time Mel and her friends Shannon and Naarah dressed up!  And we started the day with another concert, this time the band was Abney Park.  It was the first of two concerts by them, and it was very fun! 


Mel had brought a lot of toys to the con this day, and Naarah took this photo of all of us with Mel in her costume.  Raven and Amelie are Mel's dolls from George Etc., then Buzz Bluejay, and us, and Horatio and Vanilla!


Then we walked across the street to the mall to find lunch.  This is the hotel that the con is held in.


On the way back, we stopped to watch this class on how to use a whip.  It was outside for safety.


Then we went back and shopped some more before we found a yummy dinner and then went home to sleep before the long day on Sunday...

That day started with lessons on fighting, and then went to a class on making bustles.  We also spent a lot more time in the dealer's room.  We saw this cool Mad Scientist type guy!


This nice man let us play with his zeppelin...  Naarah held us up...


This was exciting!  We met the author and artist of the Girl Genius comic, Kaja and Phil Foglio!  They are fun people, as you an see.  :p


Then Shannon, Naarah and Naarah's husband Rob went to another concert while Mel helped turn people into zombies!  There was a whole line of people wanting zombie makeup so Mel did a couple.  We gave advice.  Here is one she did all by herself.


Mel bought us toys a crocheted top hat to play with!  We all think it looked best on Riin!


There was another Abney Park concert, and more concerts, and more shopping, but us toys were pretty tired out and just let Mel carry us around for a while.  Eri tried to get lost, but we found her fine after only a few minutes of panic. 

Then we relaxed at Shannon's apartment while Mel nursed her blisters and enjoyed not being in a corset.  Mel and her friends are already signed up to go again next year!

* Posted Jun 17, 2011, 4:17 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Grand Haven, MI, USA - 6th June 2011

By: kessalia

Hello!  Mel decided that if we waited for a perfect sunny day to go to the beach, when she also didn't have to work, we would never ever get there.  So we went today!  Mel packed us a picnic lunch to share.


Then there were fresh strawberries and raspberries for dessert!  We chose some of each!


There were a few other people at the beach, but not as many as there will be later in the summer.
The lighthouse and pier looked closer than this picture makes it look!  We could see people walking along it.


The lake was very calm, so Mel let us go closer to the water.


We looked along the shoreline for shells!  There weren't many, because the water here is fresh and while it has a lot of fish, not as many animals with shells live here.  We found some though, and took them back to share with Cilly and Vanilla.  They were building a sand castle, and we decorated it with our shells!


Buzz Bluejay put some feathers on the castle to help decorate it, too!  But then Horatio, the Dragon, came by and said that dragons are supposed to attack castles, and he knocked it to the group!  we were all upset with him, especially Mel.  He got a big lecture, and a bite on the tail from Buzz, who was really mad at him!



* Posted Jun 12, 2011, 10:51 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Grand Haven, MI, USA - 11th June 2011

By: kessalia

Guess where we went today?  To the 18th century!
There was a historical reenactment of Michigan's colonial past out on harbor island, called Feast of the Strawberry Moon.  There were Indians, French Voyagers, and British soldiers.  A lot of people brought goods to trade.  It was fun and we learned a lot!

This man had made bark huts and brought many items to show, including wool blankets and tomahawks.


A shepard came and brought his sheep and dogs, to show us how the dogs worked with the sheep.  His wife also had a place selling wool and sheep's milk soaps. People could pet the sheep if they were careful.


Then we heard gunfire!  We ran over to the field and saw that a band of Indians and a group of British soldiers had bumped into each other, and negotiations hadn't gone well.


Cilly tells the story of the battle in her journal very well.  It was interesting to watch!  We all had very good seats.


When it was all over, all of the people who had been 'killed' got up and some came to talk to us.  These two men played French soldiers, and explained some of the battle to us.


On the way home from the festival we were in the mood for a little more history, so Mel took us to this old steam train that is parked in her town for he people to see.  It was so big!  You can see part of the old water tower in the background, too.


* Posted Jun 17, 2011, 4:25 pm Last edited Jun 17, 2011, 4:26 pm by kessalia [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Muskegon, MI, USA - 20th June 2011

By: kessalia

Hello mom!  We have a new friend visiting us here at Mel's house, Einstein Pig!  Since he loves to learn new things and is quite the intellectual, Mel took us all to the nature center at Hoffmaster State Park, in nearby Muskegon.  It had a lot of information for us to learn about sand dunes!

Here is a map of all of the places along Lake Michigan with lots of dunes.  The dot for were we are is about in the middle.

Mel fails at rotating photos, sorry.  This is an ant lion statue!  They are actually very tiny things.  We would not want to sit on this if it was real!  Riin wanted to find one as a pet but Mel said that finding tiny ants for it to eat would be too hard.

Downstairs there were many displays of the animals that live in the dunes.  All of the stuffed specimins are animals that were found by rangers already killed or injured, or were taken off of poachers by state park rangers.  (Mel knows this because she used to work there and got asked a lot.)

This garter snake is not stuffed, he is alive!  He is used to being handled and helps teach kids that snakes are not scary and slimey things.  We found him quite freindly!  This time Mel is the one who wanted to take him home as a pet!

Outisde this big window, which is three stories tall, is a view of one of the dunes and also a wildlife feeding and viewing station.  We saw birds, and squirells, and a few frogs who lived in the pond.

We went for a short walk in the woods later, after Mel bought lots of postcards in the gift shop.  This is a short handicapped accessible trail that was built when Mel worked here.  At the top is a platform with more learning materials to read.

Here we are reading about Mt Baldy, the big sand dune that we could see from the visitor's center.  The woods were full of birds and small animals and very peaceful!  Mel says we will probably go for a much longer walk in the dunes sometime later.  We can't wait! 

* Posted Jun 29, 2011, 3:11 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Miko's home in Beijing, China - 5th July 2011

By: Daeriin

Hi, Mom. We landed in Beijing safely just now. And we couldn't wait to see the world!

We found we were on Miko's desk and she was waiting for us.
Miko is a high-schooler now and the final exams have just been finished. So she'll have plenty time to play with us.=w=

On the first day we got there, we walked to the balcony and wished to watch the sunset. But...
Oh, the weather was terrible today because the sun was too shy to meet us.T^T
But it doesn't matter.

The school is not having class tomorrow. Miko will do something else in the morning. And in the afternoon, she will stay with us! Horray!
We haven't deceided what to do yet. Miko have no homework now and maybe we'll do some sightseeing.
Wish the sun won't be so burning... AH so hot!

* Posted Jul 5, 2011, 12:29 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

the school, China - 8th July 2011

By: MikoMuha

Today, Miko took us to her school!
The school is in close to Miko's home. So we rode bike to there.
It's nearly the end of Senior 1(Grade 10) and they had to make one of the most important choice in their lives - to select wether to learn liberal arts or science subjects. Miko told us that if you choose arts, you'll learn history, geography and politics mainly. And choosing the other one means you'll learn physics, chemistry and biology. But all of students need to have Chinese, maths and English classes as major subjects. The choice will have  a great influence on your future that it'll decide your major in university. It's a hard decision for some students and the rule has lots of disadvantages. So numbers of  National People Congress' members(of China) have proposed to cancel the Branch of Art and Science. But the motion has been rejected again and again and again. So Miko and her classmates still have to do in the prescribed way. Most of students in the class will choose science but there's still a few would like to learn humanity social subjects. Therefore, Miko must say goodbye to some of her best friends... > <
We all think that's a pity. But this is the life, isn't it?
It's the schedule of the day. They had Chemistry, Chinese and Physics classes on the day.

Many students went to have lunch. And some others brought their food to the classroom. They must wear school uniforms.

During the lunch time, a club held an activity to teach us how to recycle paper!

Riin love to stir the pulp.=w=

In the afternoon, the school organized us to watch the movie. Though it was boring, we had a good time together.
We were with Miko's friends!

After school, we walked to the huge playground.

And the school gate.

And...It's time to go home!

* Posted Jul 12, 2011, 1:07 pm Last edited Jul 12, 2011, 1:08 pm by MikoMuha [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Tanzhe Temple, China - 9th July 2011

By: MikoMuha

Hi, mom! Miko's parents took us to Tanzhe Temple today. Tanzhe Temple is one of the most famous temples in Beijing and also is the best known Dao Temple. It was first built in 306AD. And people often go there to see ginko in autumn.
There're some sights...
We climbed on the lion...
and the rockery!
We had a nice day.

* Posted Jul 12, 2011, 12:19 pm Last edited Jul 12, 2011, 1:01 pm by MikoMuha [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Nan Luoguxiang, China - 17th July 2011

By: MikoMuha

Today, two of Miko's friends held their birthdays together. And we went to a restaurant on Nan Luoguxiang(you may also translate into South Luogu Lane.) called Za Mo(It means ponder in English).
We got there by car. With... Miko's angry bird!

Nan Luoguxiang is a new fashion landmark of Beijing nowadays. There're penty of small stores that sell fun stuff.
And...we arrived!

The most famous food must be the desserts sold in Wenyu Cheese Store. And the girls' favorite is milk custard with red bean.
That's yummy!

After buying the dessert, we went to Za Mo. And they picked a table on the second floor. That's in the open air and can see the other houses' roofs! (Yea, the lane is in old style and there're only bungalows and quadrangles.)
That's also a little pub which provides food that were mixed with both Chinese and Western  styles. So...the taste may be weird... but that's fun!
Sauted roasted beef.(The name is like a tongue twister!)

Spaghetti with sautéed beef filet with black pepper.

And there was also pizza made with roasted duck...

After lunch, we went shopping there!
It's the street.

There was a store named July's. Yes it's in July!

On the lane, there was the Bench Mark Stone while the ROC.

We rode on a wood piglet~

Then, we went to Xiao Xin's Cafe to have a rest.

We decided to go some where else since there wasn't so much to do... So we went boating in Shicha Lake!

* Posted Jul 18, 2011, 3:02 am Last edited Jul 18, 2011, 3:15 am by MikoMuha [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Shicha Lake, Beijing, China - 17th July 2011

By: MikoMuha

We walked to the Lake.
On the way, we passed Jiu San club. Jiu San Society is one of the democraticparties in China.

It was cloudy. But still crowded!

We picked a pedalo and went boating! The six girls boated in turn.

There's a market named Lotus Market nearby. And there are lotuses on the lake!

Then the sky suddenly turned bright and we heard the thunder! And we ended our gathering in the shower.:)

* Posted Jul 18, 2011, 3:13 am Last edited Jul 18, 2011, 3:14 am by MikoMuha [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

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