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Elf Not On The Shelf

Comfortably nestled in bed, drifting to sleep, I’m tapped on the shoulder by my wife. “Did you remember to move the elf”, she whispers. “Ugh. No. I’ll go do it”, I mumble. I begrudgingly slip out of bed and schlep myself down the stairs to cleverly “relocate” the elf―that beady-eyed, smirking, creepy little elf. Read more

The Christmas season has arrived. For many of us, we think back on Christmases past with a bit of nostalgia―finding and decorating the perfect Christmas tree, attending Christmas Eve church services, feasting at (multiple) family dinners, preparing milk and cookies for Santa, and marveling at the boundless excitement of children opening presents. Read more

Toy Soldiers Prepare Battle

In the predawn hours of an eerily quiet Saturday morning, Robert E. Lee’s Virginians, Indians, and Knights formed a formidable defensive line around the Space Station, manned by several dozen Moon Men. To their immediate front, the enemy lied in wait. Composed of American Colonials and GI’s, Cowboys, British Soldiers, and a platoon of Panzer Tanks, they waited for the signal to attack. The opposing armies would fight for every square inch of the carpeted floor that day. My favorite toy soldiers were the last to fall, dying triumphantly in battle. Read more

Hot Wheels

My introduction to Hot Wheels collecting came early on in my professional career. As a store manager for a national retailer, I was always amused by the familiar sight that greeted me every morning when I opened the doors for business. Without fail, a handful of middle-aged men were congregated at the entrance of the store, nervously pacing back-and-forth, uncomfortably making small talk with one another. As I approached the doors, they began to jockey for position, and with the thud of the lock sliding back into the door, they were off to the races. First one to the toy aisle won the right to claim first dibs on newly stocked Hot Wheels! Talk about fanatical collecting!

Such fervent fandom peaked my curiosity in the genre of Hot Wheels. Here’s what I learned. Read more