Z Crew News Episode 3 | Coverage You Can Count On (Ft. Emmie & Natalie!)

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Hi everyone, and welcome back to ZCN! AGW hopes to make this a monthly series, and word on the street is, Paris will be joining ZCN soon! In the meantime, I’m your host, Ziana Yang, here with the fan-favorite segment Around the Blogosphere!

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We all hope you had an awesome Thanksgiving! Life got in the way, and unfortunately, we weren’t able to get a Thanksgiving post up during our first non-hiatus November. However, the reader is still filled with orange, gold, and brown from when bloggers celebrated the thankful holiday!

Carlye from Silver Fox Studios is hosting a photo contest! This contest will work like AGNDM: Each week, there will be a new theme and an elimination until a lucky doll-photographer is declared the winner! The deadline to sign up was November 10, but you can still read and enjoy the series. Thanks for the tip, Natalie!

Maya from Life Behind a Camera recently finished her novel, titled Hide and Seek, and had an awesome blog tour launching it! As her book’s synopsis reads, Hide and Seek is about: “Amara Clark is haunted. When her childhood friend, Asher, vanished during a seemingly ordinary game of hide-and-seek, she was left bewildered and alone.
Now, eight years later, memories of Asher are coming back to haunt her and she struggles to decipher the meaning of his disappearance…Before they know it, Amara and her best friend, Rowan, are whisked away on a journey to find Asher and take down the sinister group that is holding him captive. But time is running out, and saving one friend could mean losing another.”* This fantastic read is available at Amazon for just $10.12 paperback and $5.99 Kindle! ** Thanks for the tip, Natalie!

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Speaking of self-published authors, Allison from A Farm Girl’s Life has written and illustrated her very own book of poems! As the author’s note in Unfurling: A Little Book of Poems says, “A poem is a flower bud – such a small package, yet it holds so much in every petal, every word. When the outer layer unfurls, the old, familiar scales fall from your eyes, and everything is transformed. Perhaps that is what beauty is: a transformation.” The book is available at Lulu for $7.99 in paperback.***

Rose from The Bright Bookcase recently wrote a thought-provoking post about the struggles of blogging and blogger jealousy! You can check out her post here! She also is starting a competition called 25 Days of Blogmas. You can sign up for the posting challenge/competion here!

Madison from Madi Grace, Delightful World of Dolls, and Madison Grace Author is still on hiatus, and we hope to see her back soon! Be praying for her health, you guys!

AGs In Alaska is cutting down on her post frequency to prepare for what she calls ‘the best Christmas post ever’! Everyone is waiting in anticipation for the awesome post, and here at ZCN, we can’t wait to find out what it is. “Hmm, I’m not exactly sure [how long I will be gone]! I will try to post a few times during December but most of my work will be spent on the Big Surprise,” she says of how long the break will be, dubbing her Christmas post the same name as FPC before it was revealed.****

And of course, our Big Surprise has been revealed: it’s a photostory competition (FPC, or Fall Photostory Competition)! You can check out parts 1 and 2 of the intro photostory by clicking on the numbers, and you can sign up and check out the rules and how it works here. Stay tuned for an interview with the creators of the series, coming at the end of this post!

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Now that we’ve caught up with the latest blogosphere happenings, it’s time to check out our next segment: What’s Up, AGW?

“I’ve been sick for the last week or so,” Emmie says. “With Thanksgiving break and not going out too much, I have a lot of free time! I’ve been working on a video, did a super fun photoshoot, and obviously have been making this post! My mom and I just got back from my grandparents’ house, where my sister and dad are staying until Saturday. We’ll drive back up there, watch the football game, and then bring them home!” She told ZCN on Friday, November 23.

“I’ve also completed 114 pages of my NaNo novel’s structure! I decided to skip the scene outline. I’m usually a panster/minimal plotter, so I really just want those key moments mapped out and the rest I get to creatively make up as I go. Today is the LAST DAY of NaNo (!!!!), and I really need to catch up on the actual writing part – I’ve completed page 1, which is only 876 words of my 6000 wordcount goal.”

She’s using today’s home day to furiously type a novel into existence in hopes of conquering NaNoWriMo once again. “I really don’t want this to be the first year I lose, even though I wasn’t as serious about it this year!” Emmie says.

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Emmie’s also planning another surprise, coming this Christmas alongside the 2018 Emmie Awards.”All I can say is that it’s a mega-AGSM! It’s been scripted, and some of the characters have been cast. I plan to get some filming done when school gets out for winter break in two weeks.”

Thanks for reading What’s Up, AGW? And now it’s time for some breaking news!

Emmie recently received a mysterious letter from American Girl, announcing that American Girl Magazine’s (and I quote the letter’s heading) “FINAL ISSUE” will be in January/February! Here’s a photo of the letter:

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“We’re proud of our amazing 25-year run of American Girl magazine, which has given voice to millions of girls since its debut in 1992.  However, just as the broader print magazine industry continues to face serious declines, American Girl magazine is equally challenged with decreasing subscriber numbers as more girls turn to alternative forms of entertainment,” says American Girl Magazine Customer Service in a recent interview with the ZCN team.

“Although we’re sad to say goodbye to the magazine, we look forward to finding new ways to deliver the same type of fun and inspiring content for girls in new and relevant formats.  We’ll have more to share about this in the months ahead.”

American Girl magazine is offering three options for customers to get their annual subscription money back: A magazine subscription to National Geographic Magazine, a refund, or American Girl books valued at $40.

The only problem with the last option is that AG selects the books for you, which means you could get $40 worth of books you already have.

The first and most recent issues of American Girl Magazine, interestingly both featuring redheads holding something. Credit (Magazine #2) Credit (Magazine #3)

When ZCN asked American Girl magazine’s customer service about this, AG responded, “Sorry, but no returns/exchanges/substitutions can be made to the books included in the bundle. They are free to choose another replacement option, or you may consider donating the books to their local library or give them as gifts for other girls to enjoy.”

Emmie and her mom have decided to go with the refund option and spend the money on books they can pick out themselves. “Just like the AG magazine Customer Service, I’m sad to see American Girl magazine go. I’m going to miss waiting for the next issue, starting contest entries that never get sent in, and reading the latest issue for hours on end. My favorite part was the Help! advice column and According to Aggie comics, and I loved the spotlights on real girls from across the country.”

Are you sad to see American Girl magazine go? Leave a comment at the end of this post! But first, we have our Spotlight segment, featuring no other than Natalie from The AG Spot and our very own Emmie from American Girl World!


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Z: Hi, guys, and welcome to the show!

E: Um, was already here in the first place to help you with the episode, but…hi again!

N: Hey, Z! It’s great to be on the show!

Z: What sparked the idea of Fall Photostory Competition?

E: When Natalie had to leave Standing Firm in my Faith for personal reasons, we missed each other and I emailed her about doing an AG collab. When we were discussing how writing/photo contests like HARPS and CPC were so popular at the time, I had an idea: what if we did something similar, but a photostory competition? In the end, it turned out to be almost nothing like those competitions, but that’s how it began!

N: We were also trying to spark some more interest and add a little more excitement in the doll blogiverse, in addition to having internet friend fun together!

Z: That’s really cool – the blogosphere has been sort of quiet. How long do you think it took to create this competition?

N: A looooooong time. I believe we came up with the idea in February or March, and then decided to work on it in May to make it a summer contest. Unfortunately, we didn’t realize just how long it actually took to plan these things, and there were lots of things to tweak and agree on. Then, when one of my dolls suffered an unfortunate accident, we weren’t able to photograph the beginning photostory…

E: …So then I had an idea to turn it into fall photostory competition! We changed the name, images, and gave the audition round a fall-y theme, did a ton more, and then we were all set! It was a long and complicated process, so it finally being ready is super rewarding.

Z: Wow, that sounds crazy! Besides what you mentioned above, what kinds of things did you have to do to get the competition ready? 

E: Making graphics, coming up with scoring and prizes, figuring out rules, creating photo stories, fixing issues, getting a top-secret surprise that we’ll reveal at the end of the competition ready, taking pictures, and more!
N: There were a lot of little things we had to do that we hadn’t even thought of – like figuring out how to cc/bcc in emails and finding a fake text message generator (the weirdest thing I’ve googled yet).

Z: Why did you decide to create the competition?

N: The doll blogiverse has been at a bit of a low ebb lately, with many bloggers leaving or posting infrequently. We wanted to jazz up and add some excitement to the AG community, and this was the perfect way to do it!

E: Yup! I also hope it inspires lots of great ideas, stories, pictures, and friendships through all the readers and participants!

Copy of Copy of Untitled Design

Z: How does the competition work?

N: You can sign up on our blogs, and create a photostory using our prompts. During this first round, which is the ‘audition’ round, we’ll score the photo stories and pick six (or more!) stories for people to vote on. The top three receive awesome prizes!
E: You can check out the prizes at this post!
Z: That’s awesome! When will the competition end? Can you still sign up?
N: The deadline for photostories to be submitted is December 1st, which was recently extended so that more people can enter.
E: And that’s just for the audition round! The finals will overlap into December, (Fall doesn’t technically end until December 21, right? :P) where everyone will get to vote on the photostories (even the participants, but they can’t vote for themselves!)
Z: Where can you sign up? Where can you find the rules?
E: You can sign up right here or here! The rules can be found in those same posts!
N: After you sign up, you’ll receive a confirmation email from either me or Emmie. When your photostory is finished, you’ll submit it to us, and we’ll email you the results!

Z: Thanks for the interview! 

E: No problem!
N: My pleasure! It’s been super fun!

And that’s it, folks! Thanks for reading ZCN, and remember to send your tips through the contact form and sign up for Fall Photostory Competition! See you in two weeks!
This has been Ziana “Z” Yang, star reporter and anchorwoman for the Z Crew News. Have a blessed day, and Z Crew, Out!

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*Blurb from Goodreads.com

**ZCN and American Girl World are not sponsored by or affiliated with Goodreads, Amazon, or the author. This mention is not part of a blog tour.

***ZCN and American Girl World are not sponsored by or affiliated with Lulu or the author. This mention is not part of a blog tour.

****Comment reply used with permission.

 

Fall Photostory Competition (aka the Big Surprise): The Rules, What it is, & How to Enter!

Hey, marshmallows! I’m so excited that FPC is finally getting out there after half a year of planning and stalling on my part this awesome event. Ahh, I can’t wait!

Wait, back up. What is FPC, you ask?

  • FPC – Fall Photostory Competition – is exactly what it sounds like! It’s two-round competition hosted by Natalie from The AG Spot and me!
  • Here’s how it works:
  • In the first round, the Audition Round, you will write and photograph a 200-600 word photostory based on the two Audition Round prompt! (The Audition Round part of the contest is loosely inspired by this contest by foreveranddollways.)
  • We’ll have two weeks for everyone to put together and enter their photostories, and then Natalie and I will pick six (or more, depending on how many people enter!) photostories to continue to the Finals!
  • The finalists will write and photograph 400-800 word photostory based on the three new prompts!
  • The top 3 highest scoring winners will receive special prize packages!

Third place will receive: A winner graphic and their photostory featured on our blogs!

Second place will receive: All third place prizes and a guest post on each of our blogs!

First place will receive: All second and third place prizes, a doll trophy made by me, a TAGS t-shirt, and signed photos of our dolls! *Note: If the first place winner is not allowed to give their address to us so we can send the first place prizes, then the second place winner will receive the prizes, and if they can’t then third place, and so on.

Now that you’ve got a basic idea of the competition, let’s list the rules!

  • All photostories must be your own and original (no remakes of old photostories, books, movies, classic stories/fairytales, etc.)
  • You are allowed to edit your photos.
  • The Audition Round photostories must be 200-600 words long and include at least ten pictures. The Finals photostories must be 400-800 words long and include at least twelve pictures.
  • Although American Girl Dolls are the preferred subject for your photos, you can use stuffies, other dolls, clay figures, etc.
  • Please keep your photostory G-rated and God-honoring!
  • Your photostory will be judged in five categories based on a point system: Photo, props, doll, writing, and story.
  • Please, do not post your photostory on your blog until after the competition ends.
  • When you enter, you will have to give me and Natalie your email address. We will never use it for spam purposes, only to notify you if you have made it to the finals, answer or ask questions, and remind you of deadlines.
  • When you have entered, you will email us your finished audition photostory by December 1.
  • You do not need a blog to enter.
  • The deadline to sign up was originally November 22, then it was changed to November 29, and now is currently December 1.

What are you waiting for? Just enter with the sign-up form here!

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The audition round prompts are:

Feel free to take the prompts in any (appropriate) direction you’d like! Remember, try your best and be unique. Good luck!

During the audition round, we are looking for many things in your entry, most importantly; 

  • Quality photography
  • Nice ‘actors’ (your dolls)
  • An interesting storyline

And while we can’t give you instructions on exactly how to win, we can give you a few tips:

  • Dolls who look like they’re staring into space, are half-dressed, or have messy hair are a serious turnoff to us.
  • Lighting is key! Dark and/or grainy photography is always a no-no.
  • We LOVE fresh, compelling stories, so don’t be afraid to be creative or even slightly weird!
  • ANY plagiarism (a story very similar to another blogger’s photostory, past or present) we find will be automatically disqualified from the competition

Good luck and be creative! I can’t wait to see all your awesome photostories!

~Emmie

The Big Surprise Revealed: Part 1 (a Photostory)!

Note: Unfortunately, there’s been some confusion resulting in Natalie’s part being up before mine (all my fault)! This is Part 1 to her photostory ‘The Big Surprise Revealed’.

~Jade’s POV~

Laptop

Dozens of emails, ideas, and photos later, we’re here. Here with the big surprise, I’m holding in my hands (okay, theoretically holding in my hands), the big surprise I’m about to reveal. How long have I been promising this? Forever at least. But now, I think it’s finally time to reveal that the big surprise is-

*PHONE BEEPS LOUDLY*

Emmie pauses her typing, groaning in frustration at the interruption. “Jade, can you get that? I’m working on a really important post here…”

“Is it the big surprise thing? How much concentration do you need to type a gazillion dots for them to scroll through?” I ask.

“I’m NOT going to make them scroll through a million dots!” She protests, then adds quietly, “Just fifty or so.” She starts typing again, just when my phone emits another beep. “Seriously, can you get that?!”

“Fine,” It’s my turn to groan as I roll off of the couch to grab my teal iPhone off the desk. Before I even sit back down on the couch, I check my phone. A chat with Michelle fills the screen.

Text 1

Hey Jade! 👋 What’s up?? The message reads.

Text 2

Hey! Emmie was just making a blog post. About some sort of big surprise thingy?? 🤷 My fingers fly accross the digital keyboard as I type.

Text 3 Texts

I’ve heard about that. It’s supposed to be something about photo stories. And another blogger is involved too, but I’m not really sure.

The door opens and closes with a loud click! I look up from my phone to see Z holding a ginormous trophy.

FPC Trophy Reveal

“What’s that?” I point at the trophy

“Thanks for offering to help me, so nice,” Z says sarcastically, placing the trophy on the desk. “If the readers enter the Fall Photostory Competition that’s being hosted by American Girl World and The AG Spot, they could win this trophy.”

Without a word to Z, I bend over my phone, hurriedly replying to Michelle.

Text Final

Michelle, I think I know what the big surprise is…


Hey guys!

As you may have guessed from the title, photostory, and intro, today’s the day! At 4:00 p.m. CT, or 5:00 p.m. EST, Natalie’s part of the photostory is going up!

Yeah, that’s right! Remember when I hinted that another blogger is involved? Natalie is literally the other half of this project – or should I say collab? – and we’re so excited to reveal it together! In 1 hour, her post will be up at theamericangirlspot.com! Then, tomorrow we’ll post the rules and official stuff (yet another hint for you!) and the Big Surprise will be official!

I can’t wait for the Big Surprise to finally be revealed, along with another super awesome thing at the end! Make sure to check out Natalie’s post to find out what it is and what happens next!

Are YOU excited? Do you know what it is already cause I already kinda said it? Can you believe it’s finally here?
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Isabel’s Bad Hair Day AGSM

Hi marshmallows! I’ve been working on a new AGSM for you guys, and I hope you like it! TIP: Go to the website if you’re in the reader and the video is not showing up. americangirlworld.blog

Music credit: Anywhere by Ikson https://soundcloud.com/ikson
Music provided by Music for Creators https://youtu.be/XWV5crbWDyg

I had so much fun making the video, and I hope you enjoyed it! Head over to our YouTube channel for more videos like this, and make sure to subscribe! Have a blessed day!

Did you like the video? What did you think about the music? Should I do more posts about Alexandra’s internship at Beauty Hair Salon?Signoff
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Customizing Isabel

The last time that I tried customizing a doll, it didn’t turn out so great.

From the front, (and verrrrrrry far away), Ash kind of looks okay:

Isabel's Bad Hair Day IMAGES.png
sorry about the image quality!

But the back? I got so impatient, I actually cut the wig in half and left a horrible splotch of hair on his head. This is what he looks like without his wig on:

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Creepy! ^

Add in the colorless, old vinyl of a well-used $50 Kirsten and half-tightened limbs, he’s kind of a mess. Which is why he barely ever appears on this blog.

So when I realized that Isabel definitely a) needed a new head that I didn’t want to pay $40 for, or b) needed a new wig, I was a little reluctant to try again. I didn’t want to further ruin one of my favorite dolls!

Isabel is in pretty good condition. Her legs are the right balance between loose and tight – mostly tight, with a little wiggle room for posing. Her skin is mostly clear – a few scratches here and there, but I’ve never really noticed them that much. The only major scuff marks are on her face, but you can’t see them unless you look super close.

But her one big problem? Her hair.

It’s crazy! The frizzy, haircut-survivor (if you can even call it a survivor) mop sticks out in every direction. You can barely even tell it’s blond anymore!

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A few months later, when I opened up the Vanilla Cookie wig from Exquisite Doll Designs, there was no turning back. I was going to have to change Isabel’s wig, whether I liked it or not.

Untitled design (7)

This time, I did my research. After watching a few YouTube videos before putting on the wig, (I really liked the tips from this one and this one), I gathered my supplies:

And now for the part I’ve been dreading: Changing the wig. (Cue ominous music)

I carefully pried at the wig with a non-acetone nail polish remover-coated spoon, trying to lift it up. I started from the back of her head and moved onto the top. Those parts came off easily, but right above the ears was the toughest spot.

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Tip: watch TV or read while you work with the wig to relieve boredom. (Ft. Jessie re-watch)

After hours (more like on-and-off days) of pulling and tugging, I finally got the wig off! The last step was to pull the new wig on by holding it at the back of her head and pulling the rest over.

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Ta-da! I think the wig looks really cute on her, except for the fact that it makes her look very tan. I don’t mind that too much, though.

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Isabel looks gorgeous with her new ‘do! I’m working on a fun AGSM about her hair called “Isabel’s Bad Hair Day.” It’ll be up on the blog tomorrow!

Thanks for reading this short little post! Have a blessed day!

What do you think of Isabel’s new wig? Should I glue it on so it’ll stay better, or should I not glue it so I can switch it out with other wigs for photo stories?


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Z Crew News: Episode 2 | Coverage You Can Count On (Featuring Clara from Clara and Co!)

Welcome back to ZCN! I’m Ziana Yang, the star reporter and anchorwoman for the series. In today’s episode, we’ve got some news, interviews, sneak peeks, and more for you to enjoy!


ZCN Episode 2 (3)This fan-favorite segment, Around the Blogosphere, highlights what’s been going on in the past few months around the blogosphere. Let’s take a look!

Tess from the awesome blog Steeplechase has achieved an amazing feat! For the entire month of October, she posted every single day with a fun and exciting topic. Some of my personal favorites include: Taking a Casual Stroll on a Wednesday {APADO 17}Everyday Miracles {APADO #12}, and Conversations With 13-Year-Old Me {APADO #4}. Congratulations, Tess! Don’t forget to check out her APADO recap and take her survey here. Thanks for the tip, Madi!

Madison from Delightful World of Dolls has been blogging for 6 years! The blog has become a blogosphere icon, filled with spectacular writing and gorgeous photos. As Madi states in her 6-year blogaversiary post, “Believe me, the moment I am sustainably healthy and have my skyrocketing energy back…*in Terminator voice* I’ll be back.”** Be praying for her!

With many bloggers banging out the next bestselling novel during NaNoWriMo, several bloggers are going on hiatus. However, we’re glad to see Bekah from Questionable Tourtise Couture back from her ‘Unexpected Hiatus‘! Don’t forget to enter her Q&A, too.

Eleanor from Pointe to Christ got hearing aids! “Due to repetitive ear infections, vertigo, and other damage to my ears, I lost a lot of my hearing,” she writes in a recent post. “I lost 80% in my right ear, and 50% in my left ear. I need hearing aids, and I got them about 2 1/2 weeks ago. It has been so, so, so, so, soooooooo amazing! I have heard so many beautiful things that I’ve never ever heard before (take flip-flops, WHO KNEW THEY MADE NOISE???) There are still some things I cannot even believe make noise.”*

ZCN Episode 2 (2)

She’s also working on a world-changing project that shares God’s Word and spreads light into the universe, one letter at a time. Eleanor is inspiring you and people everywhere to write letters every day this month encouraging a random person and leave them in a place where someone could find it! Here at AGW, we’ve been trying our best to write one letter every day this November. Learn more and join in at the website, letterswithapurpose.wordpress.com!

Clara from Clara and Co. is hosting a giveaway and blog tour! You can check out her post here. Stay tuned for a special spotlight on her brand new business and AGW’s spot on the Blogger Box blog tour at the end of this post! Her little sister, Laura, is also hosting a giveaway of her own! Enter to win some awesome washi tape here.

Do you have news to share? Don’t hesitate to send your tips through the Contact Form for a chance to be featured in the next episode!

Now that you’re caught up on what’s going on in the blogosphere, let’s take a look at our other segment: What’s Up, AGW?


ZCN Episode 2 (5).png

This NaNoWriMo, Emmie’s doing something totally different than usual! “I recently got K.M. Weiland’s Structuring Your Novel and its accompanying workbook, and for the first few days of NaNo, I’ve been structuring!” Emmie states. “I have a separate goal of 139 words – each word represents a workbook page. When I finish a workbook page, I update my “word count” and watch as my completion percentage goes up a little. According to the NaNoWriMo YWP website’s progress tracker, I should be done on November 9!”

After completing the structure, she plans to skip the outlining part of her novel and dive straight into writing. “I’ve never really liked a super-long outlining process, but I hope to try it for the rewrite of my Huntress novel. For now, my structure is serving as an outline, so that way I know where I’m going and hopefully will get the timing right, while also having more creative freedom during the actual process of writing the novel itself.”

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The currently untitled novel is going to be a book about AGW’s newest doll, Paris. “It’s formatted like an AG Meet Book and follows the story of how she came to AG Academy,” Emmie says. I’m even one of the main characters!

Emmie plans to self-publish the book for her 3-year blogaversiary! “I wouldn’t be able to finish it in time for the upcoming 2-year blogaversiary,” she explains. “But, I do have some other exciting things planned.”

One of those exciting things is The Emmie Awards! Last year’s Emmie Awards celebrated all kinds of bloggers and their achievements, and this year, we plan to take it up a notch. There’s going to be red-carpet photos, a blog party, and possibly even a real-life prize for the Blog of the Year award! Of course, this year Z Crew News will be covering the whole event.

Emmie’s also been working on a top-secret Christmas AGSM, too. More information and a trailer are coming your way this December!

Isabel got her wig replaced! A post and AGSM are coming up about the (super long) process and results.

Speaking of surprises, the Big Surprise is almost ready to go! Expect to see it this weekend.


ZCN Episode 2 (1)

Let’s turn our attention towards an awesome blogger for our stop on an awesome blog tour. Today, I’m going to be spotlighting Clara from Clara and Co. with a special article!

“What first inspired me to create The Blogger Box was the lack of [subscription] boxes designed specifically for bloggers. After spending a while trying to find a blogger-specific box with no results, I decided to make one myself!” Clara says in a recent interview with me.

The young entrepreneur says that “The first people to know [about my idea for the Blogger Box] were my parents! When I came up with the idea, I quickly typed it up in a Google Doc and shared it with them. They both seemed excited about the idea, and it just grew from there.”

From start to finish, it’s taken Clara six months to make this a reality. “The hardest part for me was finding the best prices on everything I wanted to include in the boxes. My favorite part has been promoting and marketing the box by designing logos, a website, etc.”

“My hope for the future of the Blogger Box is that I will inspire as many bloggers as I can!” Clara says. “The Blogger Box will be launched on November 12th and can be purchased through the website, which will also be revealed on the 12th!”

You can follow the rest of the tour through these blogs:

Julia’s Creative Corner – November 3rd

The Lens and the Hard Drive – November 4th

Wild Writing Dreams – November 5th

American Girl World – November 6th

Cleverly Chic – November 7th

Christina & Camera – November 8th

A Purpose of Winged Dogs – November 9th

Home With the Hummingbirds – November 10th


Thank you so much for reading this episode of ZCN! As always, I had a ton of fun bringing you guys Coverage You Can Count On. Remember to be praying for today’s election! Z Crew, Out!

Z. Crew, Out!
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 *Excerpt used with permission from https://pointetochristblog.wordpress.com/

**Excerpt used with permission from https://delightfulworldofdolls.com/

Braving the Backyard: A Photoshoot (Ft. My First Real Camera!)

Hey, marshmallows! Or should I say llamas? BECAUSE I GOT TO TAKE A SELFIE WITH A LLAMA TODAY. AHHHHH! *cuteness overload*

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IMG_0947You probably don’t know that I love llamas almost as much as marshmallows! It was so awesome to ACTUALLY. SEE. A. LLAMA. IN. PERSON.

Actually, I’m still in awe of how awesome today was – today was the JDRF OneWalk, an awesome charity event hosted by JDRF! The llama was at the petting zoo they had set up by the tents. It was so awesome to see all these people coming together, raising money and awareness for Type One Diabetes, and walking a 3k or 5k just so people like me can live as normal a life as possible. If you were there today, THANK YOU!!

The day kept getting better and better because I got to set up the Canon PowerShot SX530 my awesome grandma got me for my birthday! Thank you so much, GMa!

Once I got home from Nutcracker practice and my camera battery had charged, I grabbed Z and headed out into the backyard for a photoshoot.

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I liked how this picture turned out! With some editing, I brightened her eyes and added a watermark.

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This photo barely needed any editing! I love the scarf from her accessories set that she’s wearing.

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Her shoes from the 2018 spring mix-and-match collection are super cute, too.

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Me when I took this: PLEASEDON’TFALLPLEASEDON’TFALLPLEASEDON’TFALL

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Z: Woooohooooo! This picture was hard to take, but I like the end results!

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Can you believe it’s November already? I definitely can’t! I’ve been spending the first few days of NaNo structuring my book, and when I finish, I’ll actually write the book itself for the rest of the month.

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Z: Done with the slide! Time to get off.

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Z: Hey, what’s this?

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Z: Salutations, my loyal subjects! 

I love this one! It might be the best out of the whole photoshoot. It’s really cool how the fence made vignette-type shadows at the edges.

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Time for Z to conquer the swings! I had to get on the ground for this photo, but it was worth it!

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Isn’t Z so photogenic?

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Z: Hey, look at Chewy over there! Hi Chewy!

Bonus Photos!

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Aww, Chewy’s so adorable! He loves sniffing the grass for some reason. XD

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He looks like he’s in deep thought. XD Don’t look too closely at Z in the background

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For some reason, I think this picture of rotten wood looks cool. What do you think? Make sure to leave a comment!

I hope that you had a blessed day! I certainly did. Thanks for a great day, God!

~Emmie (why won’t you show up, signoff??)SignoffSignoffBefore you go, don’t forget to share this post and receive three free desktop and laptop wallpapers AND a bonus, a personalized one delivered straight to your inbox!

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American Girl Live, Christmas Collection, and Contemporary Characters Retiring!

Hey marshmallows!

Oops, I haven’t been posting for a while! I’ve got some videos, surprises (including The Big Surprise) and new posts in the works, so keep a look out for those! Anyways, I’ve got some exciting news for you.

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Today, I was on the American Girl website, and I noticed something once I scrolled to the bottom:

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Image credit: americangirl.com

American Girl Live? Apparently, they’re going to do musicals of the dolls’ stories. Let’s head over to the AG Live Tickets website.

*gets distracted by Play games*

*comes back*

Oh yeah, I’m writing a post!

Anyways, in this video, several girls in different locations turn around and smile for some reason. A cheesy lady narrates about how awesome American Girl Live is. Then, they grab their dolls and smile in a theater, where they apparently are watching American Girl Live.2 Despite the weird add, I think this is a unique idea. The earliest show is on December 13, but they haven’t done very much advertising (besides maybe to awards members) – it took me 15 whole minutes of browsing the website before I came across this tiny logo. That’s it for the AG Live – now onto some of the Christmas releases!

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*Images credit to americangirl.com

And yes, I am aware they released these at the beginning of October. I’m a professional procrastinator.FVK48_Holiday_Dreams_Pajamas_18inch_Dolls_1

Holiday Dreams Pajamas for 18-inch Dolls – $24

The outfit’s colors scream Christmas duh, Emmie, they’re red, green, and blue and go together nicely. The slippers are cute and fuzzy, and the top looks comfy. There’s nothing really that special about these PJs, but I think they’re worth the price. There are also little girls, girls, and women’s versions of this outfit. I think it’s random for them to suddenly sell women’s sizes in this outfit, but at least they are expanding their size range.

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Tis the Season Party Dress for 18-inch Dolls – $36

This outfit is super cute! I love the velvety material and the rhinestone pattern. The shoes are gorgeous! I love how they wrap around the ankles/shins with ribbons. The purse is really cute too. The only problem is the headband – I feel like the rhinestones might come off easily.FVK40_Let_It_Snow_Outfit_18inch_Dolls_1

Winter Sparkles Outfit for 18-inch Dolls – $36

This outfit is really cute, but the shawl kind of looks like it’s choking the doll. I think it would look a lot better without the indistinct designs and a furry sweater instead of the shawl. The leggings and shoes are adorable and have an awesome mix and match opportunities. Again, in the headband, I could do without the flower mandala cross snowflake designs.FVK85_Winter_Sparkles_Outfit_18inch_Dolls_1.jpeg

Winter Sparkles Outfit for 18-inch Dolls – $36

I think this outfit is really cute! I love the trendy, blush/purple-pink colors. The beanie is very mix-and-matchable. I love the trench coat style. The only problem is that it’s fuzzy, so it looks like a bathrobe. But other than that, I love this outfit!06BUN35_Mix_and_Match_for_Dolls_1_Tank_Jacket_Silver_Skirt_Flats_FRJ60_FRK93_FRK87_FRK95_1.jpeg

City Sights Jacket & Silver Starlight Skirt Outfit for 18-inch Dolls – $10.00

(Since there are so many of these mix-and-match items, I’m only going to be reviewing this one.) I really like all the shimmery details on the skirt and the shoes, and the jacket is a nice color. The only thing wrong with this outfit is the shirt. It doesn’t match the rest of the outfit at all! And why is it a tank top? It’s supposed to be the winter release. Overall, this outfit is actually pretty cheap, so that’s nice. I just wish the shirt was black.FVK06_Care_and_Keeping_of_Your_Skin_and_Nails_1.jpeg

The Skin & Nails Book – $9.99

I’ve actually read this book, and it’s really good! I love all the tips they give you, and since I started washing my face the way they recommend it, my skin has been a bit clearer! (I’ve only been washing it for two days, though. 🙂

And that’s it for the reviews! I didn’t want this post to be super long, so I didn’t include all the items they released this winter.

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On American Girl’s website, several months ago they posted a notice that Tenney and Logan were retiring, but then it went away. (Read more about that on Jewel’s post!)

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It returned, but all the Contemporary Characters are going to be gone by the end of the year! I just wish they would’ve made these awesome, cute dolls (I say cute wayyyy too much) GOTYs instead of making a separate line that would come and go within a year.

I’m sad to see Z, Tenney, and Logan go, but I won’t really miss Gabby. She hasn’t sold well at all, and her display is a single cube with nothing but her doll and a few outfits in the old packaging.Untitled design (7) What do you think about the new releases? AG Live? Retiring dolls? This post being up so late everyone already knows what I shared? 🙂

Expect to see a Z Crew News, customization, and AGSM posts in the future! I might be going on a hiatus for NaNo, but I’ll see if I can finish my outline in time.Signoff
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paris + pumpkins| A Photoshoot

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Hello, people of the Earth! (#flashback) A few days ago, my little sister’s class had a playdate at a pumpkin patch. I tagged along with Paris and my camera! (Okay, my iPhone, but technically it was a camera still) 

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“This is the perfect pumpkin!”

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The lighting was really harsh, so it took a lot of editing to get her eyes to show up.

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When the lighting is right, though, Paris is so photogenic! I’m thinking about entering her in Cycle 3 of AGNDM with this photo. What do you guys think?

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I really like the lighting in this photo, but looking back, I wish I had posed Paris differently. She’s just kinda standing there, staring off into the distance…

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I was inspired to name her Paris by an old NTTM, actually! (Somehow an N kept sneaking into the end of that acronym, looking back at my featured images. Name That Truly Me Now?)

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Since I got Julie’s Basketball Set for my birthday as well, I decided to make her a basketball player! I’m even going to write her ‘meet book’ as my NaNoWriMo project!

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 Thanks for reading this quick little post! See you guys later!

Signoff

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Eleven. // More Cheesecake, Shopping, and a New Doll

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my new favorite gif ^ (thanks, natalie!)

Eleven.

Wow. That seems…crazy, I guess. It’s hard to believe. You know what’s also hard to believe? How amazing Wednesday was!

And no, I’m NOT bragging, I’m sharing my adventures, so please no hate in the comments! (everyone knows virtual marshmallows are so much better)

Wait, that’s not right. I’m not sharing my adventures…Paris is!

*crickets*

Oh yeah, did I forget to introduce the new doll, Truly Me #53 doll, Paris? *squeals with excitement* She’s so cute! I love her! *brushes her awesome hairstyle* I even made a little unboxing video to kick off the post – and here it is!


NOTE: Most of the time, the video doesn’t show up in the WordPress Reader. Please CLICK HERE to go to the website.

Can I take it over from here? Sure, Paris! OK!

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Hi, I’m Paris! Right now, I’m at the AG Place for Emmie’s birthday.

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“This morning, Emmie woke up to the birthday song – a family tradition! Then, she opened the wrapping paper and quickly made an unboxing video for her YouTube Channel.”

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After that, we ate breakfast and then headed over to the mall.

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This nice girl at the Grand Hotel let me take a selfie with her! However, when it was time to take the picture, she got distracted by this:

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Apparently, Z is leaving by the end of this year! Emmie’s really sad about that – she thought that Z was one of AG’s best dolls. 

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Emmie thinks this picture is artistic…I mean, if you squint your eyes and tilt your head it looks a bit artistic – Hey!

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“Whoooooooo is that girl IIIIIIII see, staaaaaaaaring straight baaaaack at meeeeeee?”

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Strike a pose!

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No offense to this CYO model, but she’s kind of creepy.

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You can get your ears pierced at the AGP now!

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After we looked around the store for a bit, we headed over to The Children’s Place for some shopping!

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Everything seemed to be 40% off for some reason.

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After stopping at Crazy 8, we headed over to California Pizza Kitchen for lunch. I had a ton of fun with the kids menu!

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More selfies!

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The pineapple pizza I ate was super good! Tenney photobombed, LOL! She came along with me to the store, and we’ve become pretty good friends.

Before…and after. Cheesecake successfully annihilated. 

Then, Emmie went ice skating! I couldn’t go, sadly, because I don’t have any skates. Emmie and her sister were the only people on the whole rink! It was super cool!

Thanks for the post, Paris! I filmed a little outro for you guys while I was on the ice:

Signoff

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October Morning: A Mini AGSM + UPDATES!!

The Video

Hey, marshmallows! I’ve got some super exciting news for you guys. But first, I’ve got an AGSM video for you guys! Z takes Popcorn for a walk on a drizzly October morning. But Popcorn decides to get into some mischief when she spots a squirrel in a tree!

Did you like it? I had so much fun making it! I can’t believe it’s October already!

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NaNoWriMo

I’ve been asking myself this question for a couple of days now. I’ve got a WIP I really want to finish this month, but I have some ideas too. I realized I’m more of a panster (shocker!!), so I think I’ll have more time this month to finish and plan. We’ll just have to wait and see!

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My Birthday

On the 10, I’ll be 11! You can check out my tenth birthday here! I have some big plans for my birthday this year. Hopefully, I’ll be able to take lots of pictures to share with you guys!

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The Big Suprise

It’s happening guys, I promise! It keeps getting bigger and bigger…I’m even surprising myself with all of the things I’m adding!

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New Design! + DOMAIN!

That’s right, guys. WE GOT A DOMAIN!!!

I can’t believe it – that’s crazy! Make sure to check out americangirlworld.blog‘s new site design by clicking HERE!  I’m so excited about this, guys! This is a huge milestone for AGW!

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That’s It!

Thanks for reading this quick little post and hopefully watching the video! Make sure you never miss a post and follow along (we’re 20 followers away from 200)! God bless your day! Remember that He is always there for you, even when life gets crazy. ❤ ❤

Signoff


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« falling into a new season »


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Please excuse the bad pun 

Hey, marshmallows!

It seems crazy that it’s already Fall. Can you believe that? School has started, the weather is cooling down (in everywhere except Texas), and the trees are beginning to turn orange and red.

Basically, how my seasonal wrap-up posts work, I list the pros and cons of the past season (in this case, Summer). Then, I’ll share some stats, and conclude with goals for the future and what I got done this summer!

Continue reading “« falling into a new season »”

A Day in the Life of Jade Palmer

Hey, everyone! I’m Jade. You might remember me from our AGSM series, Forever! Emmie let me take over the blog for a Day in the Life Post! I don’t think AGW has ever done one of these before, so that’s super exciting, yay!!

Well, anyways, on with the post! Here’s what the average day in my life is like.


6:30 – Wayyy too early, but my alarm wakes me up. I lie in bed for about five minutes while contemplating whether I should sleep in or wear makeup.

6:35 – I decide to wake and put on makeup. Then I do my hair and get dressed.

6:50 – Once I’m ready and dressed, I’ll head into the kitchen for a nice breakfast. Today I’m eating a blueberry yogurt parfait with granola and berries as toppings. Yum!

6:55 – While I eat, I’ll do a devotional on my Bible App. The verse of the day is Ephesians 6:10:  Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.

Jade Brushing her Teeth in the Bathroom.jpg6:58 – I brush my teeth before I leave.

7:00- I drive to school. Our dorm is only five minutes away from AG Academy, so it’s a pretty short drive.

Jade and Z Talking at School Lockers
From Emmie: Sorry about the cutout quality! This is my first time doing Photoshop-style editing.

7:05 – I park and walk into school. I meet Z by my locker, as always. We chat for a bit about how much homework we have, how she is enjoying 7th grade, furthermore how I’m liking high school.

7:10 – The first bell rings. Z heads towards the middle school section to film her morning announcements newscast, and I go to my homeroom.

7:15-7:45 -In homeroom, I watch Z’s morning announcements, study for my Spanish test, and get some math homework finished.

7:45-11:00 – Since today is Thursday, I have Spanish, English 1, Home ec, Algebra 1, and Social Studies. As the day progresses, my backpack gets heavier and my brain gets fuller!

Lunch Tray
Image credit: http://www.kcur.org/post/matter-taste-why-congress-may-back-new-school-lunch-standards#stream/0

11:00 – I have lunch and sit at my usual table with Laine, Matt, and Stephanie. My lunch is a cheeseburger, fruit, salad, corn, and yogurt.

11:30-12:45 – After lunch, I have biology and chemistry. They both involve a lot of note-taking, but at least we got to do a lab in chemistry.

1:00 – Finally! Regular classes end and the choice/elective curriculum begins. In Bible Study, we learn about Exodus, Moses, and Egypt.

When the LORD saw that he had turned aside to look, God called out to him from the bush: Moses! Moses! He answered, “Here I am.”

God said: Do not come near! Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground. I am the God of your father, he continued, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.

But the LORD said: I have witnessed the affliction of my people in Egypt and have heard their cry against their taskmasters, so I know well what they are suffering. Therefore I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and lead them up from that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey, the country of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites.

Now indeed the outcry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen how the Egyptians are oppressing them.

Now, go! I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt.

But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”

God answered: I will be with you; this will be your sign that I have sent you. When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will serve God at this mountain.

“But,” said Moses to God, “if I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what do I tell them?”

God replied to Moses: I am who I am. Then he added: This is what you will tell the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you.

~Exodus 3:6-12 NABRE

1:45 – Now, I have ballet classes! We start with leaps and turns, then a pre-pointe class for review, then a break, then a regular class, a break, then a pointe class…It’s a lot, but it’s so much fun! Dancing relieves all the stress from the day.

5:45 – After dance class is done, I’m usually worn out. I go to my dorm and do some homework and text with Steph until dinner.

6:30 – Most of the dorm has pizza, but Alexandra and I each have a wheat bread PB&J.

7:00 – After dinner, I stretch, surf the internet, finish my homework, and change back into my dance clothes.

Jade in Ballet Class With Background7:15 – 8:45 – I have one more pointe class, contemporary, and jazz before bed.

9:00 – I take a cold shower and change into my PJ’s. Then I read my devotionals, Bible, and book before bed.

10:00 – Good night!


I hope you enjoyed seeing a day in my life! I love posting on here. Well, I guess now I have to prepare for Nutcracker auditions – they’re coming up in a few days!

Do you enjoy DITL posts like these? Would you like to see more of them? What about a video about the Nutcracker?

Jade's DITL (1)


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Back + A Photoshoot

1I haven’t posted in over a month. The last three posts began with “Sorry I haven’t posted!” But I know this isn’t the end. After how far I’ve come, I can’t give up blogging now!

Lately, I’ve been focusing on my writing and haven’t had the time and energy to post. But I’m going to try harder to keep you guys updated, and maybe even start a personal blog!

My birthday is coming up soon, school started, and I’ve got so many things planned. The original ‘big surprise’ may not be happening anymore, but I do have something else I’ve been working on… something huge! I also really enjoyed making the Z Crew News post, and I even started a family newsletter. I really like writing, graphic design, and photography, so I think that journalism is perfect for me!

Continue reading “Back + A Photoshoot”

Z Crew News: Episode 1 | Coverage You Can Count On

Make sure to view this post on the website for better quality.

This post was inspired by The Sunshine StopThanks, Julia, Liz, Enni, and Jo for the help on this post!


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Hi, everybody! Welcome to Z Crew News, a reliable source of news from around the blogosphere. I’m your host, Z Yang, ready to tell you all about the news our reporters have collected.

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Camp NaNo has come to a close, and we have discovered that chocolate has disappeared from the fridges of Camp NaNoWriMo participants everywhere.

Enni crosses the finish line of Camp NaNo with 50,000 words of her novel, Blizzards! (Tess’s newest fictional “crush” is her tritagontist, Ixon.) Jo and Tess reached their goals just hours before July ended! Emmie, my only reporter, also joins the winner’s circle on July 30, just hours before the last day of Camp.

Camp NaNo was a fun and productive experience for many writers around the blogosphere. Hey, that reminds me of our segment, Around the Blogosphere!

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Around the Blogosphere is a segment telling you just what’s up in the blogging community, the best segment in all of ZCN!

Madison’s writing break/blogging hiatus continues, and Enni states that “Madi, as always, has kicked the devil to the curb again, though it’s not an easy fight to win!” I couldn’t agree with her more!

Enni, Tess, and Jo compete for Queen of the World. Rebekah is managing Enni’s campaign. (Thanks for the tip, Liz!)  Who will win? Is there going to be a vote? Will everybody forget about the winner’s title like what happened in the Blogging President Elections? The information is coming your way…right after the break.

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*insert funny Doritos commercial*

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Alright, welcome back to ZCN! Jo says, “I have no clue [how it will be decided],” whereas Enni thinks “A vote, of course!”

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BREAKING NEWS: Emmie has just been appointed Princess of the World a few minutes ago. As the heir to the throne, she will probably help the future Queen of the World perform her royal duties and steal all of the spotlight.

Rebekah, Enni’s campaign manager, gets to do a class with Grace Dunn! I’ve assumed this class will be an acting one, but it could be for something totally different. According to her ‘twin’ Julia, characters from Rebekah’s world are showing up in real life! We’re not exactly sure what this means, but thanks for the tip, Julia!

Changes are coming to the well-known blog Dancing Among the Stars. The blog will be completely redesigned, the name changed to Pink on Purpose and switched to a new platform. For more information, please visit this post. Rose has also changed blogs.

We’ve noticed a tag trend going on right now. The Avocado Tag and Social Media Tag are going crazy in the blogging community, posts popping up left and right. If you’ve been tagged for these awards, you’re in luck! These tags are fun and relaxing to read and write.

Word on the street is, Ash might be leaving the AGW Crew! A post is coming your way soon with more information.

Now that we’ve talked about what’s going on around the blogosphere, let’s discuss what’s been going on right at this very blog, AGW!

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August 5 was Jade’s birthday! She’s 16 now! A huge Sweet Sixteen party should be coming to the blog soon.

Sadly, there hasn’t been a post on here since the 12 of July! I can’t promise more posts this month – Emmie will be very busy with school starting and stuff. Hopefully, back to school will have a special post.

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Speaking of special posts, what about that big surprise you keep hearing about? This photo is a clue to what it is. Any guesses?

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Thank you so much for reading. This has been Z Yang, star reporter, and anchorwoman for Z Crew News. Z Crew, out!

Z. Crew, Out!

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