Doll Travel – New Mexico

Josefina NewIn January 2013 we received the new AG catalog featuring the Girl of the Year – Saige.  I have always loved the Southwest and West, and had never considered visiting New Mexico.  Saige inspired me to consider the logistics of such a trip.  I found out that Santa Fe is only 24 hours from Chicago on AMTRAK – now I had a really unique vacation idea taking shape!

Sleeper room on AMTRAK.  Bed above flips down and couch pulls out like a futon.  Sleeping in here with three people is memorable... Notice I didn't say what kind of memories you will be left with!

Sleeper room on AMTRAK. Bed above flips down from above and couch pulls out like a futon.

Brianna was 8 when we took this trip, and we were already fans of Josefina and her books.  My mom (AKA Grandma) and I had made a Josefina-inspired dress for Brianna a year or two earlier, so of course that came on the trip along with the doll.

Santa Fe Train Station

Santa Fe Train Station

We stayed at The Old Santa Fe Inn.  I surprised Brianna by purchasing Josefina’s summer outfit and leaving that on her bed.  Josefina was all set to be back home in Santa Fe!

Old Santa Fe Inn

Old Santa Fe Inn

New Outfit!

New Outfit!

One of the great things we were able to do in Santa Fe was visit El Rancho de Las Golondrinas.  This rancho is a museum with buildings dating to Josefina’s time and before.  They offer a “Josefina” tour for a nominal amount.  We had a tour guide all to ourselves, and she was a former schoolteacher.  Wonderful lady!  Many of the authors who have written books for AG about Josefina have visited this rancho, including Kathleen Ernst who wrote the Josefina mystery “Secrets in the Hills.”

Courtyard of the Rancho

Courtyard of the Rancho

Grinding Corn

Grinding Corn – Brianna thought it was fun, but how about doing it all day long?

Carding Wool

Carding Wool

Sombrita and Florecita!

Sombrita and Florecita!

The most amazing thing to me was that the bed in one of the rooms in the rancho looked almost exactly like the bed American Girl sells for Josefina.  Can I find this picture?  Of course not.  You’ll have to take my word on that one.

In addition, you can see the horno, or oven, outside which was also used as inspiration for Josefina’s horno.  It’s really big!

Bread in the Horno

Bread in the Horno

We did not make it down to Saige’s neighborhood of Albuquerque on this particular trip, but we really loved Santa Fe and hope to return some day.   If you love Josefina, I recommend Santa Fe’s gorgeous weather, great food, unique history, and easy driving.

Happy to answer any questions about AMTRAK trips!

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10 thoughts on “Doll Travel – New Mexico

  1. Flo

    New Mexico is a very interesting state and I was shocked at how the terrain varies in different areas, everyone has this misconception that it is all desert. If you get to Albuquerque, try and go in October during the balloon festival, one of the most amazing things we’ve ever seen! Looks like you guys had a fun trip, what a cool idea to take the train the whole way.

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    1. Jen @ DollsBetweenUs Post author

      I definitely hope to get to Albuquerque some day… And you can take that Railrunner train between ABQ and Santa Fe.
      The great thing about train trips is its so relaxed. You can bring some wine, close the door to your room, and take your shoes off! Going to the dining car constitutes the work for the day.

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  2. Xyra

    Great photo story! Looks like you had a great time.

    I love traveling by train. My husband and I took Amtrak to Chicago shortly before we were married. The sleeper car was great, but my clock was opposite – I’d be lulled to sleep during the day when I could watch the scenery and at night I was awake (i could tell the engineer had picked up speed). Would do it again in a heartbeat.

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    1. Jen @ DollsBetweenUs Post author

      I would love to take the Empire Builder to Seattle some time. Traveling with a kid makes the nights interesting too… I recall a 2:30 am wake up call “We’re in Kansas City!”
      I really enjoyed your blog post about the radish honey, and told my husband all about it! I can’t comment on your blog, even as Anonymous…they don’t seem to go through. I am having some Rishi Turmeric Ginger tea right now!

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  3. ADayLateADollShort

    Wow, that looks like a great trip! We had hoped to stop briefly in Santa Fe on our road trip last summer. Now I’m kind of glad that we didn’t because that museum looks awesome and we wouldn’t have had time for it.

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  4. jackylina

    That is SO cool! You’re making me want to go there now! Have you ever been to Colonial Williamsburg? If you liked Santa Fe, you would love Williamsburg. They also used to give Felicity tours, but stopped when Mattel bought Pleasant Company because of copyright laws. But the illustrations in her books literally come alive when you go there. I’m lucky that I get to go there every year because my grandma lives 30min away.

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    1. Jen @ DollsBetweenUs Post author

      We have never been to Williamsburg, but get to DC every few years and I would love to get there next time we are out east. I also want to see Monticello.
      Interesting that they had to stop the Felicity tours… Maybe Santa Fe is just remote enough to be out of the reach of lawyers! It’s a surprisingly small town and we liked the fact that it isn’t touristy. You don’t feel like you are paying inflated prices every where you go because you are on vacation.

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  5. Pingback: My American Girl Catalog Collection Part 1 (1992-2000) | dollightful dolls

  6. Pingback: Happy Birthday Saige! | The Dolls Between Us

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