Turn of the Season: Goodbye, Summer! Hello, Autumn! – Fall bucket list

Turn of the Season is a week long blogging event being hosted by Alexa of Alexa Loves Books and I.  Alexa is a sweet Summer child and I’m an Autumn fox baby so we wanted to put together an event celebrating the end of Alexa’s season and the beginning of mine.  Throughout the week we’ll be highlighting some of our summer favorites as well as our autumn anticipations!

Fall Bucket List

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Kristin

Wish List Worthy: Wave 2 of the Harry Potter Funko Pop Vinyl Figures

Yes yes yes yes yes! Although Luna Lovegood is still noticeably absent from the new lineup despite being included in the preliminary concept sketches for Wave 2, I am still over the moon about the new figures!  Funko has even announced a March 15th release date for the new pops so we won’t be waiting that long!  I’m most excited to add Draco, Sirius and Dobby to my Harry Potter collection but I’m sure I’ll be picking up Yule Ball Hermione and Ron too because they’re an OTP of mine.  The dementor is admittedly frightening but I suppose my Voldemort needs at least one supporter on the shelf.  Hopefully the other characters included in the concept art (Luna, Neville, Triwizard Harry and Gambon Dumbledore) will make up the next wave.  Plus, I’m still hoping for a Ginny, Hedwig, Hogwarts Express, Fleur Delacour, Bellatrix LeStrange, Mad-Eye Moody, Cedric Diggory, and the list goes on and on!

(All images via Pop Vinyl)

Not Included in Wave 2

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Tea & Book Chat: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

This book is EVERYTHING.  Carry On by Rainbow Rowell is an anomaly of a book for even getting the opportunity to be published.  The story’s inception happened in the popular YA contemporary novel Fangirl (also by Rowell – also a favorite of mine and you can read my review here LINK) about a fanfic author named Cath who has serious feels for the characters in the Simon Snow series.  Cath writes slash fanfic about Simon Snow (very similar to Harry Potter) and Baz (very similar to Draco Malfoy) and Rainbow’s newest book Carry On picks up in their eighth year at Watford as the supposed final novel in the series.  Us as readers have insight into their world through Cath’s Fangirl fanfic and knowledge of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

I had already fallen in love with Simon and Baz through Cath’s intense love for them so while I was skeptical about Carry On, I was always planning on reading it and hopefully enjoying it as an extension of Fangirl.  Carry On ended up being so much more than that.  It’s a story in it’s own right and I’m amazed at how Rowell was able to pick up the story as if seven others books has already been published and read by fans picking up this one.  The worldbuilding is phenomenal and I never felt confused about the prior events.  There is a healthy amount of exposition within the first 50 pages or so and it’s engaging enough to keep the reader hooked until her original story begins to shine through.  When people told me that The Magicians by Lev Grossman was Harry Potter for adults, I was severely disappointed (read my review here) LINK.  Carry Onis actually Harry Potter for adults.  The characters are in their 8th year of schooling so the situations they face and their dialogue is more mature in their nature.  I really really really wish that there would be more books in this series because I loved it so very much.

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For each character in Carry On, there is a definitive parallel counterpart in Harry Potter.  In addition to Simon and Baz who I previously compared, we also have The Mage (Dumbledore), Ebb (Hagrid), Penelope (a Ron Weasley / Hermione Granger mash up) and the Humdrum (Voldemort).  One of the best aspects of Rainbow Rowell’s writing is her ability to capture the feelings of romance between characters and Carry On is no exception.  My heart was melting when I devoured certain scenes and it broke my heart each time I had to put the book down to go to work.  The characters are compelling and well developed and all of the outside knowledge the reader goes into with just enhances the experience.  The characters spend their time in the story unraveling a small mystery in addition to something much bigger involving several Mage wars.  I don’t want to give anything at all away about the plot because it’s so perfect that it deserves to be experienced for the first time while reading it through.

Final Thoughts: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell is a literary dream come  true for anyone who spent their youth reading and writing fanfiction (especially Harry Potter fanfiction).  The characters will capture your heart and the romance will have you swooning beyond belief.  Rainbow Rowell gets it.  It’s not necessary to have read Fangirl first in order to enjoy Carry On but I did very much appreciate having fallen in love with Simon and Baz through Cath’s eyes before Carry On was ever announced.  Carry On is a really fun, snarky, fantasy read and I would recommend it to anyone looking for adult Harry Potter.

Rating 6

Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen.

That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right.

Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story—but far, far more monsters. (via Goodreads)

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Kristin

5 Fandom Friday: Couple’s Costumes I Want to Force My Significant Other to Wear For Halloween

We did this topic last year for 5 Fandom Friday as well but it’s such a fun one to include because people are always discovering new characters and fandoms so everyone on your list from last year might not make it this year.  This year I decided to shake things up and post 5 couple’s costumes that I want to dress up as with Andrew at some point in the future.  We don’t have anything big planned for this Halloween (besides the aforementioned pie-baking, Halloween-candy-eating and scary-movie-watching) so Andrew and I will be saving our costumes for Kelly & Erika’s annual after-Halloween Halloween party.  I’m not going to reveal our plan just yet but here are some characters I want us to dress up as in the future!

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1) Bilbo & Gandalf – Andrew already has the height going for him to be Gandalf and since Gandalf is my favorite character I would love to see Andrew dressed up as him.  Also, being Bilbo will give me an excuse to eat a million meals in a day and walk around barefoot.

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2) Rapunzel & Flynn – This is one of my favorite Disney films and Rapunzel and Flynn are the characters in the Disney World that most closely resemble us.  We have something planned involving Tangled but I’m not allowed to say what it is just yet :-)

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3) Jack & Sally – I toyed with the idea of dressing as these characters this year but we ultimately went with something else.  I would rather save a classic like Jack and Sally for when we have something huge planned!

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4) Harry Potter & Luna Lovegood – I can’t think of any reason why I wouldn’t want to do a couples Harry Potter cosplay. Luna is my favorite character and I chose Harry for Andrew since he’s so easily identifiable but I would be open to letting him choose a different character.

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5) Spider-Man & Spider-Gwen – We actually have each other listed in our phones as Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy.  I love both of these characters and now that Gwen is webslinging in an alt universe I think it would be incredible to pair her up with Spidey in our universe.

October 6 on 6: Orange

This is the first month I’m taking part in 6 on 6 which was created by Scruffy Little Nerf Herder.  Basically, you’re encouraged to take 6 geek themed photos and post them on the 6th of each month.  Each month is assigned a different color and fittingly enough, October is orange.  I’m kind of shocked to see just how little I own that’s actually orange but I’m really pleased with what I came up with!

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  1. Smaug + Fantasy – I love my Smaug Funko! He’s taller than a giant stack of thick fantasy books which is pretty cool IMO.  This photo shows some of my fantasy favorites and one (well, three because it’s a bind up) that I’m really hoping to get to soon, The Sword of Shannara series by Terry Brooks.  The MTV show looks incredible and I really want to read it before it premieres early next year!
  2. Currently Reading – I’m currently reading the 4th and final volume of Matt Fraction and David Aja’s Hawkeye which I was so sad to see come to an end.  I really love Jeff Lemire but I haven’t picked up his reboot just yet.  I’m also really addicted to Ranma 1 / 2 lately! I love that they’re reprinting the original in such a pretty new collection.  The 3rd volume is pictured and I’m pretty in love with the cover.
  3. Pumpkins! – These are from a recent trip to Trader Joe’s to stock up on all of the pumpkiny goodness I could find but I’m going pumpkin and apple picking this coming weekend so looking that them is getting me even more into the spirit of Fall!
  4. Halloween Mickey Jewelry – When I saw this beautiful set from FemmeDeBloom on Etsy, I knew I had to have it.  Disney and Halloween are two of the best things so combined, it makes me so happy.  Plus, it’s really reasonably priced for a set that includes a necklace and earrings.
  5. Compilation of Orange Things – As I mentioned,  I seem to be lacking things in the orange department so I started by grabbing some ginger Funko’s as a starting point, added my PSL #OrangeSleeveSociety cozy that Megan tweeted to me, a pair of pumpkin earrings I got on Etsy some time two years ago and my favorite pumpkin tea plus a pumpkin pie candle from Bath and Body Works.
  6. BB-8 – I preordered my Sphero BB-8 from ThinkGeek on Force Friday but I am still awaiting his arrival to my home so I visited one in the Disney Store in the meantime.  He wasn’t for sale, otherwise I would’ve cancelled my preorder and picked him up on the spot!

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Kristin

Outfit of the Day: Accio Pumpkin Spice

The season of pumpkin spice has arrived and I couldn’t be more excited! Even though my enthusiasm for my favorite flavor comes along with incessant mocking from my much cooler friends, I couldn’t care less. I am a proud pumpkin spice lover and I truly wish it were available year round.  Today’s outfit of the day celebrates the waiting period until September finally hits and the wish that I had magical powers to summon the necessary foods to satiate my cravings. Outfit details below ^.^

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Cardigan: Modcloth | Tank: Look Human | Leggings: Black Milk

Scarf: Modcloth | Earrings: imyourpresent | Wand: Universal Studios

Photos by Andrew Gallagher

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Kristin

5 Fandom Friday: Fandom Deaths I’m Still Upset About {SPOILERS}

This week’s 5 Fandom Friday is a tough topic to write about for two reasons.  The first is emotionally because guhhh fandom deaths when you’re really attached to a character are seriously difficult to cope with and the second reason is because I feel bad and I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone else! Especially if they haven’t seen something or they’re currently in the middle of watching / reading whichever thing I mention.  So be warned, there are spoilers ahead for Doctor Who, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Harry Potter, The Lion King (hopefully everyone has seen this one!) and The Avengers.

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1. Amy & Rory Pond – I was a total bawling mess during Amy and Rory’s final episode of Doctor Who which took place in NYC and probably added even more to my sadness.  The show has not been the same without them and I still haven’t warmed up to Clara :-/

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2. Gwen Stacey –  This is my number one saddest comic and movie death.  I love Gwen Stacey so much and I have always wished that Peter Parker would’ve gotten to explore a future with Gwen instead of Mary Jane.  While I have grown to like MJ a bit more, I still don’t love her relationship with Peter.

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3. Sirius Black – This KILLED me as a child.  I remember feeling so happy that Harry was finally going to have a live-in father figure in his life.  Someone who would love and care about him as if he were his own son and be able to share memories of his parents and then it was all taken away so quickly.  I can’t imagine that and it just crushed my heart into a million little pieces.

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4. Mufasa –   Another death that really had kid Kristin crying her eyes out.  Not only did Simba have his father taken away from him by his crazy evil uncle, but he had to watch the moment that it happened and even worse, he was a cub who was completely incapable of helping or trying to save him from falling off the cliff.  I can’t even imagine how I would fare if I tried to watch this film again now.

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5. Agent Coulson – I know this death didn’t stick but at the time it was a lot to handle!  I haven’t kept up with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. despite loving Clark Gregg so I’m not privy to the reason that he’s still alive in the MCU.  I couldn’t even look at Captain America for a while without seeing those bloody trading cards *insert crying emoji*

Which fandom deaths affected you the most?  And again, I am SUPER sorry if I’ve spoiled anything for anyone!

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Kristin

5FF: Top 5 Fictional Vehicles I’d Love to Travel In

Here is one my first 5 Fandom Friday catch up posts in video form!  Also I am a dork but as I suspected, it was really fun to answer one of these topics in video form!  I think I will be doing more of them this way in the future.  You can view all of the September topics on Megan’s blog and I’ll be posting our October topics much later this month! Let me know if you have any topic suggestions!

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Kristin

Harry Potter Series: Ravenclaw Edition

Yesterday I posted a few photos on instagram of the new Harry Potter books I just ordered.  Bloomsbury revamped the series with BEAUTIFUL new cover (and back cover) art in October of last year and I’ve been dying to add a set to my collection ever since.  This is the third full set of Harry Potter books I own and I see no signs of stopping this collection of mine anytime soon.  The next full set that I have my eyes on is this special Ravenclaw collection with custom book jackets that I became aware of thanks to Junebugs and Georgia Peaches. It retails for $275 and is produced by Juniper Books.  Also available are sets for those who identify with Gryffindor, Slytherin and Hufflepuff.  Which is your favorite edition?

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5 Fandom Friday: New Years Fandom Resolutions

I am so pleased that 5 Fandom Friday is still alive and kicking and we’re starting off 2015 with a new post about our fandom resolutions!  I feel like I’ve been writing best of and resolution lists for days now but this one was a lot of fun to think about.  Megan and I also have a special treat at the end of our posts today, which is the 5 Fandom Friday topics for February and March!!  I hope everyone is enjoying our topics and will continue to participate through 2015.

11) Re-read all of Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings – I briefly touched upon my intention to re-read more books I enjoy in my 2015 resolutions post but more specifically, this is going to be the year I re-read Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings.  I have re-read Harry Potter more times than I can count as a child and it was always so enjoyable to do so that I want to make the time to experience them again this year.  In April, Andrew and I are going to Lincoln Center to see all three Lord of the Rings films with the music performed by a live orchestra so I think a re-read is the perfect way to get excited for it!

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2) Play more Board Games – I have always been interested in learning and playing board games but I never had anyone who wanted to play with me.  Luckily, my boyfriend is rather into games and he and his friends love planning board game nights.  I’ve already learned and played more games in the past year than I have, well, ever, but I want to continue to see what else is out there and working on my strategic skills.

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3) Go to more Conventions – I went to SO many conventions between 2012-2013 and in 2014 I was a huge con slacker.  It was partially because of moving and starting a new job (read: moving costs and no vacation time), but now that I’m settled I’m really looking forward to planning a trip.  Even though I’ve been to Orlando a ton of times, I would love to go back with Andrew so we can see the new Diagon Alley expansion at Universal and enjoy fireworks at Disney together and such (and visit Kristin!).  So maybe we’ll plan for a MegaCon/Harry Potter World/Disney trip in the near future?  I would also love to attend ECCC, C2E2 (for the second time), and Baltimore Comic Con (because it’s my FAVORITE).

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4) Cosplay – There are two characters that I am dying to cosplay and both will involve A LOT of work and preparation.  I hate revealing my cosplays until right before the convention or the actual day of, so I’m not going to list them here but man I am really hoping I can make these two happen.  My favorite cosplay of 2014 was the Kiki’s Delivery Service characters that Andrew and I did together at NYCC.

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5) Hang my art prints – Another side effect of moving is that I haven’t had the chance to determine which art prints I want to hang on my walls yet.  I loved my old setup at my parents house, but I think want to be more adult and get some of the really special ones framed before I hang them.  I’ve acquired quite the collection of prints throughout the years and for the pieces I don’t choose to hang, I’ve been meaning to buy these portfolios that Amy suggested to me one Skype date ago so I can browse through and appreciate what I own instead of having it all sit in a plastic sleeve in my closet.

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Art Print I Bought From Babs Tarr at NYCC 2014

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PAST & UPCOMING TOPICS

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January 2nd – New Years Fandom Resolutions
January 9th – My Favorite Things About Winter
January 16th – Conventions I’ve Been To Or Wish To Attend
January 23rd – Songs That Changed My Life
January 30th – Favorite Fandom Accessories I Own
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February 6th – Favorite Funko Pop Figures
February 13th – Favorite Fictional Couples I Ship (Valentine’s Day)
February 20th – Things I’ve Bought But Haven’t Read/Watched/Played Yet
February 27th – Characters I Would Name My Kids After
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March 6th – Favorite Snacks/Drinks To Consume While Blogging
March 13th – My Fictional BFF’s
March 20th – My Comfort Films
March 27th – One Fandom Item Styled Five Different Ways
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