The Trials of Tessa, Part 1


“I wonder when I’ll adjust to this new family, Cooper,” I say to McKenna’s Labradoodle. We’re sitting on the heart, bored. Cooper, because he hasn’t gone for a walk today. Me, because I have no idea what to do to entertain myself in this new house with my new family.


“Hey, Tessa!” McKenna calls, materializing next to me in that creepy way she does. “What are you up to?”


“Nothing much,” I tell her. “Just hanging out with Cooper.”


“Ohhhhhh,” McKenna sighs. “I see. You’re bored, you have no idea how to fit in with your new family, and you think we have nothing in common.”


“How did you know?” I ask, shocked. Can McKenna read minds in addition to appearing out of nowhere?


“Trust me, I’ve been through this with four other sisters. You would think I would understand the signs by now,” she explains.


“Oh,” I say. “So . . . they went through this too?”


“Absolutely. And the best way to cure it is to do something fun together. Hey, I’m about to head to the gymnastics center for open gym time. Wanna tag along? I have a gazillion extra leotards that would probably fit you,” McKenna offers.


I ponder this for a few minutes before nodding my head. “Sure. It’s worth a shot.”

It’s not like there’s anything else I can do.


“Watch and learn, sis,” McKenna says forty-five minutes later. We’re at Shooting Star gymnastics, and my sports-obsessed sister is about to show me a few moves on the bar that I’ll (hopefully) be able to do.


McKenna flips herself upside down, her legs reaching the bar.


In one swift motion, she’s on top of the bar. “That was pullover,” she explains. “The most basic bar move. Wanna try?”


That was basic? I think, as I step up to the bar. I replay what McKenna did in my head, hoping I can do the same thing.


A few seconds later, I’m on the ground.


“Um, maybe bars isn’t your thing so much,” McKenna says. “Why don’t we move on?”


We step over to the beam, where McKenna hops up and positions herself. “Watch this. It should be simpler for you.”


McKenna flicks her arm out and I step back. With just the right amount of sass, she begins to walk down the length of the beam.


A few minutes later, McKenna hops off. “Why don’t you try now,” she says. “Gymnastics have to look confident, and walking on the beam is the best way to practice that.”


I hop up, McKenna watching from behind. “Go for it, Tess.”


It doesn’t go quite as McKenna’s did. My legs begin to wobble instantly.


I fall off the beam, crashing into McKenna. “Owwwww,” we moan in unison.


“Ya know, Kenna? Maybe gymnastics isn’t my thing at all.” I say.

From behind me, McKenna says, “Yeah. Maybe not.”

-End of Photostory-

Did you guys enjoy the beginning of an informal little photoseries? I think it’ll be around three or four parts, once each week. Kind of illustrating Tessa’s journey in becoming a part of her new family. Sound good? Is there a specific sister you think Tessa should follow around in the next few parts? Just leave me a comment down below!

AGs in Alaska


Twelve Days of Christmas, Day #10: Christmas is . . . Holiday Hairstyles

Day #10???? Say what now????? 

Yep! It’s Day #10 of TDOC here on American Girls in Alaska. Today I will be doing my first ever hair tutorial! I will be showing you two cute holiday hairstyles, as modeled by Grace and Emily!

Style #1: Flipped Braid Bun

Step 1: Braid your doll’s hair.


Step 2: Grab the braid by the end and pull it up. (My mom is holding it here, Grace’s hair is not floating.) 🙂


Step 3: Tuck the elastic part under the braid.


Step 4: Bobby pin the braid so that it stucks to the doll’s head.


Ta-da! Simple and chic!



Hairstyle #2: French Twist Braid

Step 1: Seperate a small section of hair from the doll’s head.


Step 2: Seperate that section in two.


Step 3: Cross the left section over the right section.


Step 4: This is a bit hard to explain, but you’re going to take hair from the rest of the doll’s head and add it to the the section on the left (the one that is hanging down).


Step 5: (Sorry, this one is a little blurry.) Pull the left section over the right one. (Like you’re twisting it, which is technically what you are doing.)


Step 6: Continue to grab hair and add it to the section hanging down before twisting that section over. If you know how to French braid, this should be very simple.



Sadly, my picture of the side of her hair would not upload, but it looked really cool! 😦

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If you try these styles, send pictures to!

Just a friendly reminder, tomorrow is the last day to enter my giveaway. 🙂

AGs in Alaska

Countdown to Christmas: Two days!

Twelve Days of Christmas, Day #9: Christmas is . . . Ice Skating

Day #9 already!?!? Can you believe it?!?! I can’t wait for Christmas!!!

And, in the spirit of the season, I did an ice skating photoshoot of Molly! If you like this photoshoot, check out AG Doll Adventure’s ice skating photoshoot here. Coincidentally, we did ours on the same day!

The poem, Frozen Floor, is one I wrote myself. I hope you enjoy it!


A mirror

With no reflection


Step, glide

Wind in face





Slice of blade

On frozen floor


Swish, swish




Not wobbling





Arms, legs

Flying free


Twirl, spin

Can’t fall down


Cold air

Can’t breathe



On the frozen floor

Did you like it? I wrote the poem about a month ago, but I never realized how well it would fit with this photoshoot.

Quick story, when I was skating, there was this boy there who was like, “Mom, there’s this girl taking pictures of her doll.” Why is it that people don’t think that dolls are for bigger girls, too??? Amiright???

See you all tomorrow!

AGs in Alaska

Countdown to Christmas: Three days!

Twelve Days of Christmas, Day #8: Christmas is . . . Charity

Okay, everyone! It’s time for Day #8 of TDOC! I can’t wait for this one!


“Hey, everyone, it’s Emily. I’m breaking out of my shell today to lead TDOC Day #8. Why? This post is about a topic that is very important to me!”

“Some of you may know about Operation Christmas Child (I’ll call it OCC for short). OCC is a great organization led by Samaritan’s Purse that gets shoeboxes full of little presents to children in foreign countries. Some of these children are very poor, and the shoebox you pack and send to them may be the only present they get on Christmas. Today, I will be showing you how to pack your shoebox.”


“You can pick up your OCC shoebox at places like your church. At this time of year, it is too late to do an OCC shoebox, but this may be helpful for next Christmas.”

“When you pack your shoebox, make sure to include a “wow” item. My “wow” item is this cute flower purse. Then, you can pack the rest of the box with personal care items, or smaller toys. I am including a box, a pencil, some hair accessories, and a comfy pillow.”

“However, do not pack candy; toothpaste; gum; used or damaged items; war-related items such as toy guns, knives, or military figures; chocolate or food; seeds; fruit rolls or other fruit snacks; drink mixes (powdered or liquid); liquids or lotions; medications or vitamins; breakable items such as snow globes or glass containers; aerosol cans. This information has been taken from the Samaritan’s Purse website.”


“Now, pack your shoebox!”


“My box is all packed!”


“Once your box is packed, take it to an official drop-off location. You can find the locations here.”


“Remember, this shoebox may be the only present a child in a foreign country gets for Christmas. Do you part and help make a child’s Christmas special!”

“Alright, that’s all for now. My sister will be back tomorrow with a super-cute photoshoot!”

Hey, everyone, it’s AGs in Alaska. I just wanted to let everyone know that I did not mean to offend anyone with my giveaway rules post. I hope no one thought I sounded too harsh, I promise I was just trying to make sure everyone who wanted to enter could get the chance to. I am super excited for the giveaway, and I want as many people as possible to enter! So I’m very sorry if I offended you. 😦

See you all tomorrow!

AGs in Alaska

Countdown to Christmas: Four days!

Twelve Days of Christmas, Day #7: Christmas is . . . Building Snowmen

Hello, people of the earth! Greetings! ‘Tis I, AGs in Alaska . . . with TDOC, Day #7! Today, Lindsey is building a snowman.

Quick question – do you guys have any ideas for other TDOC posts? I need two or three more ideas. TIA!

P.S. All of the lyrics are from the movie Frozen, and the song is written by Kristen Bell and Katie Lopez. 


Do you want to build a snowman?
Come on lets go and play


I never see you anymore
Come out the door


It’s like you’ve gone away…
We used to be best buddies


And now we’re not
I wish you would tell me why!


Do you want to build a snowman?
It doesn’t have to be a snowman


Go away
Okay, bye…


Do you want to build a snowman?


Is that snowman not the cutest thing ever?!?!?! And isn’t Lindsey adorable in her little outfit?!?!?!

I can’t believe we’re so close to Christmas. Remember to enter my giveaway, guys! I am choosing the winner in just a few days. 🙂

See ya later!

AGs in Alaska

Countdown to Christmas: Five days!

Twelve Days of Christmas, Day #6: Christmas is . . . Sledding

And . . . we’re back, with TDOC Day #6!!!!!


In the meantime, here’s a cute photoshoot of Grace and McKenna!







“Erm, Grace? I’m still here!”





What is up with her hair???




See you guys tomorrow! Hope you enjoyed the photoshoot!

AGs in Alaska

Countdown to Christmas: Six days!

Twelve Days of Christmas, Day #4: Christmas is . . . Baking


Hi, everyone! It’s Grace here! Today, we’re going to be making some delicious Christmas cookies!

Bonus: this recipe can actually be followed and used to make real-life cookies! However, American Girls in Alaska is not responsible for any injury, damage, or death that will not occur while making these cookies, but she has to say that just in case anyone does anything stupid.

The supplies you will need for this recipe are: 2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 2 eggs, and sprinkes.


But before you mix anything, preheat the over to 375° degrees Fahrenheit.


Step 1: In a medium-sized bowl, combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. Mix well and set aside.


Okay, I’ve got it!


Step 2: In a large bowl, using a hand-held mixer or a firm wooden spoon, mix the butter until it’s creamy and lighter in color.


Step 3: Mix in the brown and white sugars.


Step 4: Add the vanilla and eggs. Sorry the eggs weren’t showing in the ingredients picture!


Step 5: Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet mixture.




Step 6:  Make little cookie balls that are the size of the rounded part of the spoon.


Like these here!


Step 7: This is my favorite part! Flatten the cookies slightly and shake holiday sprinkles on top.

Step 8: Place them onto ungreased baking sheets and bake them for 8-12 minutes!


This is how the cookies turned out!


Sorry some of these images are weird, the camera wasn’t focusing right. It was going in and out and in and out really fast.

Anyway, a bonus picture to show you the giant mess these made!


AGs in Alaska had to wipe her hands on tissue paper for wrapping presents before taking pictures.

Anyway, hope you guys liked this post! If you make these, shoot us a picture or two at, or through our Contact Page. 🙂

This recipe is from The First Book of Baking by Jeanne Besser, and the recipe credits go to her. 🙂

Alright, see y’all tomorrow! Au revoir!


Countdown to Christmas: Eight days!