Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Behind the Toy Box

Hello loyal Toy Box Philosopher readers!  I'm Andy, and as Emily’s husband, I’ve had the pleasure of watching Emily take her love of dolls, photography, and writing and blend them into this amazing site.  Although I’m not naturally drawn to dolls (when people catch me looking at the site, I tell them I’m reading it for the biology jokes), I’ve come to appreciate them, both through Emily’s eyes, and occasionally, through yours.  As a thank you to all of you and as a surprise anniversary gift for Emily (she loves surprises), I thought I’d give you a really quick “behind-the-scenes” view of what goes into making the blog.


Emily is always thinking about how to best show off the doll of the moment.  Our family outings to the woods or to the shore often feature an extra companion or two:


It’s fun to watch her scout the surroundings and see how she plays with perspective to make the dolls seem like they’re on a larger-than-life adventure.


This is something that Emily has done for a long time.  In college, she had on her desk a picture of a horse on a beach.  It took me several months to realize that this was a Breyer horse and that the large boulders in the photo were actually small pebbles.  It would be a great story to say that that’s what hooked me on her, but I was pretty much hooked from the start.

Occasionally, her photo adventures bring her face to face with dangerous animals like this stingray 


that was just a few feet below where Emily took this shot:


Or this herring gull


Actually, stingrays are only a threat if you step on them.  Herring gulls are a threat if you get too close to their nests, try to eat a sandwich on the beach, or leave your bag of snacks unattended.  
I’ll take a stingray any day, thank you very much.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to get a photo of Emily in her studio (she has eyes in the back of her head), but it’s also pretty cool.  She has a large table with a backdrop and two large umbrella lights plus an array of bins full of dolls to facilitate the comparison shots that are a staple of her reviews.  However, I did manage to get a pic of her with her trusty old MacBook Pro:


This computer morphed from her biology-teaching computer to her blogging and photo-editing platform.

And while the boys and I occasionally help out, she gets a lot more feedback from her more reliable companions


who are always snuggled in around (and sometimes under) Emily and her computer.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this brief glimpse “behind the toy box.”  I have always loved Emily's creativity and her intellectual energy, and it is so much fun to watch it come out through her pictures and writing.  I know that she really treasures the support from all of you, and I get to see her reciprocate by always going the extra mile.

42 comments:

  1. Wowww just wow! The photos are amazing! An excellent post!

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  2. OH MY GOSH, I just barely come onto this site to email Emily about a new doll discovery, and I find this barely popping up haha. I hope to one day find a husband so loving and accepting of my doll hobby too, everyone who knows about that part of me so far just thinks it's bizarre and get a little freaked out haha. Emily sure is lucky to have a great guy like you! (But I wish we could've seen that studio ;D)

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  3. That was a fun look behind the scenes! And (I'm sure) a lovely anniversary gift! :)

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  4. This is a lovely post! So much fun to see the work that goes into this site from the eyes of somebody who loves the owner. :)

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  5. Happy Anniversary!
    Great post...

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  6. Happy anniversary! What a great post. It is so nice to hear from a supportive spouse or partner as they admire what the other person in their lives is doing especially when it is something that they love! I enjoy Emily's photos and posts and I thoroughly enjoyed your sneak peak behind the scenes!

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  7. Happy anniversary to the two of you! This is a great post indeed.

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  8. Wow is right! Ahhh!! This was such a nice surprise. He's a keeper, that one--and he's sneaky, too, apparently! I cried when I first saw this, but I've recovered a bit and now I'm more focused on how my bra strap is visible in almost every shot!?? Oh, well. Andy is right that I treasure you guys and I'm very happy to share a (big) anniversary with all of you! Thank you so much for reading, and for the lovely, kind wishes. And Emma, don't be fooled--he was freaked out by the dolls at first, too...but has come around over the last *bleep* years. Now he does things like run out and buy gummy worms for me last-minute. That's the real test. ;D

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    1. Does this mean you'll show us the studio? :D

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  9. This is great !! Happy anniversary and I'm feeling lucky we get to see behind the scenes.
    You know my old saying and I mean it from the bottom of my doll loving heart,
    A treat as always, tina

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  10. What a beautiful gift and so thoughtful. I don't know what I like more, learning more about you Emily, the dog pics (the poodle reminds me of a companion I lost a couple of years ago), or the thought that someone loves you so much that he would compose such a gift for you. To see you through his eyes at what you love to do is very special and very heartwarming. Happy anniversary to you both and thank you again for sharing of yourself.

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  11. Ok I am going to start a campaign to nominate this man Doll Blog Hubby Supporter of the year!!
    Get back Hillary and Jeb!

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  12. What a great post! And a nice opportunity to say thank you to Emily for all her great blogging and helpful reviews and comparisons!

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  13. Dear Emily and Andy,
    What a wonderful, one of a kind post. I have had the joy of reading your blog and occasionally posting comments, and it has helped me appreciate my old-new hobby and embrace it with gusto. My husband, although an occasional grumbler, is also a behind the scenes supporter. In the ultimate hubby list I think supporting your wife's hobbies has to be one of the top three, along with good looks and a sense of humor.
    I wish you both much happiness, health and laughter in your continued journey together.
    Andy - looking forward to your guest post next year's anniversary.
    Mazal Tov to you both and thank you for sharing this wonderful anniversary gift with us
    Tali

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  14. How sweet ^_^ (would love to see the studio, too ;) ) Happy anniversary to you!

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  15. Adorable. Congratulations on your *boop* happy years together. This post made me smile so big. I wish you two a huge number more of happy years, and may all of the "crazy" doll people in this world find their significant others to buy them gummy worms and dolls. :D Happy Anniversary!

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  16. this is the most wonderful thing ever!! lots of love!
    LuiZ

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  17. WOW, great post! Emily could be happy with such a kind companion, like you, Andy ;-)
    Happy anniversary, and thanks for all your wonderful post Emily!

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  18. Happy Anniversary! This is such a sweet post. :)

    Lulu

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  19. Wszystkiego najlepszego Emily i Andy! Piękny post!
    Pozdrawiam serdecznie!

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  20. Happy Anniversary! There is always something worth celebrating but it's better celebrating someone together!

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  21. Awww so cute!!
    Happy anniversary!

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  22. Amazing post and photos! Happy Anniversary! Hugs! :-D

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  23. This is just so wonderful....happy anniversary to you both! :)

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  24. Such a lovely post, indeed! Happy anniversary! :D

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  25. Such a lovely post, indeed! Happy anniversary! :D

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  26. What a wonderful post and thoughtful gesture. Happy Anniversary to you both.

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  27. Happy Anniversary to you both! It's great to take a peek behind the post-making!

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  28. FABULOSO!! Happiest of Anniversary days to you guys! And Emily, so cool to see behind the scenes!!

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  29. Happy anniversary! What a sweet post.

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  30. Aww, what a lovely suprise! He's such a keeper indeed. Wishing you a very happy anniversary, and lot and lots more to come! And congrats on the clever gift, Andy, it was very interesting to see behind the scene pics and to get to know Emily a little bit more also from this perspective :)

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  31. What a wonderful post! Fabulous surprise too! Happy anniversary to you both!

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  32. Happy anniversary, Emily and Andy! What a lovely gift and a treat to us readers! I'm glad to "see" another supportive husband in the doll community :)

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  33. How cute is that?! Thank you Andy for the behind the scenes glimpse, it's so lovely to see and read :D
    I wish you two a happy happy anniversary and thank you Emily, for the best blog on the internet <3

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  34. He's a keeper! Happy anniversary :)

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  35. Happy Anniversary! It was fun to see behind the scenes.Andy does indeed seem like a very sweet guy. My husband left me a surprise note on my anniversary post one year, so my fear is that he will now be inspired to do a whole post on my blog...

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  36. My husband supports my hobbies. I'm into dolls, he's into video games. As we see if, we all need a way to connect with our inner children, and why should having fun be seen as childish anyway? Just have fun. :)

    I love the candid shots. Those are always fun. I hope you'll try for a studio shot again!

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  37. Oh I just absolutely love this post. Thank you Andy for writing it. You are just the sweetest and clearly the perfect match for Emily. xxx

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  38. I've adored your blog for years, but have never felt the need to comment until now. This post was a wonderful gift, from an obviously supportive and fabulous husband. I wanted to add to everyone's appreciation and let you know how much I look forward to your beautiful and intricate posts. While I have never been a doll collector, your reviews bring them to life, and have inspired me to more than one purchase.... Thanks again for all the hard work and time that must go into this. What is surely a labor of love for you, is very much recognized and appreciated!

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  39. I love seeing the "behind the scenes" of doll hobbyist. It's fun to see how they get that perfect shot. And can I just say, your hubby is such a sweetie. You can feel the sense of love and pride he has in his sweetie. Thank you to hubby for sharing this with us, and thank you Emily for your awesome blog. And happy belated anniversary. :-)

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  40. This is a pretty fun look behind the scenes. :) Also, Emily and I have something besides doll love in common--a little black poodle! :D

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  41. Im a big child doll fan, i liked her reviews already but as a vegan seeing all these animals im a fan now

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