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1. My tweets

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2. Why God would not send his sons to Oxford: parenting and the problem of evil

Imagine a London merchant deliberating whether to send his ten sons to Oxford or to Cambridge. Leafing through the flyers, he learns that, if he sends the boys to Cambridge, they will make “considerable progress in the sciences as well as in virtue, so that their merit will elevate them to honourable occupations for the rest of their lives” — on the other hand, if he sends them to Oxford, “they will become depraved, they will become rascals, and they will pass from mischief to mischief until the law will have to set them in order, and condemn them to various punishments.”

The post Why God would not send his sons to Oxford: parenting and the problem of evil appeared first on OUPblog.

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3. I have proof! Dragons ARE Real!

Breaking News! Proof that Dragons are indeed REAL!

Maybe this news prompted you to drop your sandwich or even roll your eyes with disbelief….but I am here to tell you; Dragons are Real! How do I know? I have proof. In fact, I have MORE than proof! As a child I had a Dragon friend for two whole summers in Gotland, Sweden.

I shared this story with Rocco during an interview at the wonderful KitLit TV.


My newest book, Dragons are Real  tells this story in vibrant color and I am so honored that I was able to team up with reknown children’s book illustrator, .

Michael Welply was born in London, England ad raised in Winnipeg, Canada. He studied art in Winnipeg and Paris. He has illustrated over 80 books in Europe and in North America ranging from historical work to fantasy and fairy tales. He has two grown children, three grandchildren and currently lives in central France with his wife. It was Michael’s talent and vision that allowed us to accurately (and magically) capture what my brother and I experienced with our dragon friend for two summers.
Michael Welply

Dragons are real
SO basically what I am trying to tell everyone is that all of the fairy tales, myths and legends that have been told about dragons over the years are WRONG!

Dragons are not only Real, they are different than you’ve ever imagined.

Dragons are Real
This book isn’t for everyone. It’s only for those BRAVE enough to go looking for dragons in the most usual of places.

Once you find your nearest dragon you’ll need to know a few basic skills.

Are You:
 – Good at finding hidden things, like dragons in disguise ?
 –  Wanting a best friend who will take you for rides on their back ? OK we missed
      an important detail….riding on their backs while flying through the air ?
 – Good at telling jokes and riddles ?
 – Good at roasting hot dogs and marshmallows in a constant stream of fire. Don’t
     worry no fire protective gear needed.
 –  Willing to be a dance partner ?
 – Willing to listen and share poetry, especially rhymes ?
 – Are you clever enough to read a Dragon’s secret message? And then of course
     be able to send one back your local and friendly dragon ? Just a reminder that
     Dragon’s don’t text. They love to send secret messages.
If you’ve said a loud “YES” to even half of the above questions, chances are this book is just right for YOU!

As readers turn the pages and learn the truth about Dragons, they will see that the fiercest beasts in known history can actually be the best of friends. It’s a lesson in finding companionship in the most unusual of places. Dragons are Real is a magical book filled with stunning illustrations and hints that dragon are indeed all around us :)

Dragons are Real

Dragons are Real is now available for purchase on both Amazon and Gumroad. We are also offering a special free bonus gift of a Dragons Are Real Inspiration Activity Guide when you purchase your copy of this enchanting picture book.

I also received exceptionally exciting news a few weeks ago and keeping the news of this huge honor has been hard! Here is the email that popped into my inbox that had me doing the Happy Dance for weeks:

Hi Valarie,
 
I hope you are well. I’m following up to let you know that your review for “Dragons are Real” was selected by our Indie Editors to be featured in Kirkus Reviews 7/1 Issue. Congratulations! Your review will appear as one of about 35 reviews in  the Indie section of the 7/1 Kirkus Reviews magazine which is sent out to over 5,200 industry professionals (librarians, publishers, agents, etc.) Less than 10% of our Indie reviews are chosen for this, so it’s a great honor. The digital version of this issue will be available for me to send to you on July 5th, and the print version will be available in a week or so after that.
 
 
All the best & congratulations again,
 
Crystal Timbeross

Client Promotions & Advertising Associate 

KIRKUS REVIEWS |  KIRKUS MEDIA LLC
Dragons are Real
To everyone who helped make this book not only a huge success, but let the story of Dragons among us be told, THANK YOU!

The post I have proof! Dragons ARE Real! appeared first on Jump Into A Book.

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4. VIDEO: David Zinn

I love these public art pieces by David Zinn! Go have a gander - click the image to watch on YouTube.

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5. Caillou: Storybook Treasury: Ten Bestselling Stories | Book Review

Caillou, everyone's favorite preschooler, is back in this delightful collection of ten best-loved stories.

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6. Announcing the winner of the 2016 Clinical Placement Competition

This May, our 2016 Clinical Placement Competition came to a close. In partnership with Projects Abroad, we offered one lucky medical student the chance to practice their clinical skills, with £2,000 towards a clinical placement in a country of their choice. We asked entrants to send a photograph with a caption, explaining “What does being a doctor mean to you?”

The post Announcing the winner of the 2016 Clinical Placement Competition appeared first on OUPblog.

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7. Brexit and the border – problems of the past haunt Ireland’s uncertain future

On 23 June 2016 a majority of people in England and Wales voted to Leave the European Union. A majority of Scottish voters opted to Remain and, so too, did a clear majority of voters in Northern Ireland. These results have produced uncertainty about the future direction of relationships across these islands.

The post Brexit and the border – problems of the past haunt Ireland’s uncertain future appeared first on OUPblog.

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8. Book Journal: Just One More Way That Books Have Changed My Life

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9. New “Fantastic Beasts” Interview with David Yates, More from SDCC 2016

David Yates sat down with the Los Angeles Times to talk about his first Comic-Con experience (San Diego is hosting this years International Comic Con this weekend) and Fantastic Beasts.

David Yates, David Heyman, and most of the Fantastic Beasts cast are taking San Diego and the 2016 International Comic Con by storm. As a part of Warner Bros most anticipated fall film release, many eyes are on the magical events and activities Fantastic Beasts is hosting at SDCC 2016.

For those of you who have never been to a Comic Con, it is quite an experience–and David Yates is learning this too. Yates is enjoying his first Comic Con, a little sad he’s missed out on other opportunities like this. The LA Times reports on his experience at SDCC and taking the Potter Universe into new, unchartered territory with the more adult Fantastic Beasts films.

It’s kind of hard to believe that you’ve never been to Comic-Con before.

I have so missed that opportunity because everyone — actors, directors, producers — they always tell me what an amazing experience it is. We were always in the thick of one of the “Potter” movies, so I was never able to make the trip. I’m really looking forward to it. It’s such a sort of touchstone of what’s ticking in popular culture. I’m really thrilled. 

The Potter books and the movies got more mature as the characters got older. “Fantastic Beasts” looks like it’s the continuation of that.

“Beasts” hasn’t got any kids in it. Well, it’s actually got one lovely kid called Faith [Wood-Blagrove], who plays a character called Modesty, but generally it’s a film with grown-ups. So it’s a more adult development of what Jo has done before but still with lots of magic, still with lots of fun. It’s the best of both worlds, I think.

I think that what’s interesting is it speaks to Jo’s curiosity about the world and her observation of the world that we see around us. It speaks to themes that are important now, as well as all the lovely magical stuff and her genius for character. Even though it’s set in New York in 1926, she’s interested in themes that resonate now about a divided world and a polarized world and how important it is to recognize otherness and embrace it and not to be afraid of it. That’s always been an aspect of her work, and it becomes more so now.

For all the kids who grew up watching these films — and as I grow old making some of these films — and for everyone who loved the books and grew up with them, I think this will feel like a really interesting return to her universe.

This is the first time people will go into a movie set in that universe and not have a sense of what the characters look like or where the story will go. How do you approach that as a filmmaker?

In a way, it’s quite liberating. Coming at it from a completely blank canvas, to me, is an advantage. People aren’t bringing any sort of baggage with them.

There aren’t bits that are going to be left out. There isn’t the same frustration that can happen if a favorite chapter has been left out of the movie. This is a story from Jo’s imagination, and people are going to hear it first in the theater. And I think that is tremendously exciting.

 

The entire interview can be read here.

 

Fantastic Beasts’ official Facebook page and Twitter is promising more chances to view and be a part of Fantastic Beast SDCC 2016 events. After today’s open Q&A at 5:30 pm EST, which Leaky will be attending, Fantastic Beasts’ Facebook page will continue live coverage of the panel and cast discussion. See below:

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10. Debbie--have you seen BELLA BELLA by Jonathan London?

A reader writes to ask if I've seen Bella Bella by Jonathan London, illustrations by Sean London (don't know if there is a relationship between the author and illustrator). Bella Bella came out in February of 2016. Published by West Winds, here's the synopsis:

From best-selling author Jonathan London comes BELLA BELLA, the heart-pounding sequel to DESOLATION CANYON. In this story for young readers, the same cast of characters―thirteen-year-olds Aaron and Lisa and their fathers, and seventeen-year-old Cassidy and his dad―embark on a sea kayaking trip through the Inside Passage that brings them unexpected and even terrifying adventures. Young readers will eagerly follow Aaron’s adventures in this suspenseful page turner, as he learns to navigate a kayak, discovers another side to a bully, shares a first kiss, encounters the desperate world of human trafficking, and challenges an evil smuggler who threatens the entire group.

Nothing in the synopsis to tell you there's Native content, but the art on the top half of the cover tells us there is (see image to the right). I don't know what to call that image. Is it meant to be a totem pole? What do you think it is?

The review at Kirkus tells us that the characters begin their trip at a First Nations village (Bella Bella) and that they hope to learn about First Nations tribes. The Kirkus review included a link to their review of Desolation Canyon, so I took a look at that review. It apparently has Native content, too.

If I get a copy, I'll be back with a review. If you've got a copy, please comment on what you see in it.




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11. New ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Trailer: House Elves, Queenie and Brand New Beasts!

San Diego Comic-Con’s Fantastic Beasts event is currently underway, which means a BRAND NEW TRAILER!

Leaky is at both the San Diego panel, and Warner Bros’ exclusive event at Leavesden Studios in London, which is currently featuring some brand new Fantastic Beasts costumes!

Watch the trailer below, and keep reading for our coverage of the trailer:

Collin Farrell is the first to appear. He is tracking a beast …. which means, of course, he’s tracking Newt Scamander.

New York city is shown being thrown into chaos by Newt’s case of beasts, which – as we know from previous trailers – was opened by Jacob.

A house elf also makes an appearance in the trailer:

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.29.21

Along with a new magical moving portrait to love:

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.34.09

We also get to see more of Queenie Goldstein, saying ‘Teenie… you brought men home?’ as she greets her sister, ‘Mr Scamander’ and Jacob:

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.34.41

“We’re going to re-capture my creatures before they get hurt” Newt – of course – is concerned for the welfare of his beasts. New York City, not so much. Check out this beautiful shot of 1920s Times Square from the trailer:

Times_Square_Fantastic_Beasts_CC_Trailer_WM

The beauty of the cinematography is not going to let us down – the trailer is breathtaking in its visual effects:

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.36.17

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.39.20 Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.39.33 Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.39.39

 

And there are some new beasts for us to ponder over:

Thunderbird_Fantastic_Beasts_CC_Trailer_WM Demiguise_Fantastic_Beasts_CC_Trailer_WM

“When No-Majs are afraid, they attack…. Contain this, or it’ll mean war” warns Seraphina Picquery, President of MACUSA:

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.40.14

“Your skull is susceptible to breakage under immense force” Newt tells Jacob, after handing him a helmet:

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.41.02

“Don’t panic! There’s absolutely nothing to worry about” Newt assures police officers, as a HUGE beast appears behind him:

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.42.34 Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.43.48

After that IMMENSE trailer, Jacob sits back with Newt and says enviously, “I wanna be a wizard”. We know the feeling!

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 17.44.14

Keep posted for more updates, and read Pottarmore’s coverage here!

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12. Getting Rejected Can Help Your Writing

Why you should aim for a hundred or more rejections a year.

http://lithub.com/why-you-should-aim-for-100-rejections-a-year/

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13. My Thoughts On Call the Midwife, Series 2

Call the Midwife, series 2
1 Christmas special + 8 episodes

Jenny Lee = Jessica Raine
Trixie Franklin = Helen George
Cynthia Miller = Bryony Hannah
Chummy (Camilla Fortescue-Cholmondeley-Browne) = Miranda Hart
Sister Julienne = Jenny Agutter
Sister Monica Joan = Judy Parfitt
Sister Evangelina = Pam Ferris
Sister Bernadette (aka Shelagh) = Laura Main
Dr. Patrick Turner = Stephen McGann
Timothy Turner = Max Macmillan
PC Peter Noakes = Ben Caplan
Fred Buckle = Cliff Parisi
Jane Sutton = Dorothy Atkinson
Alec Jesmond = Leo Staar
Patsy Mount = Emerald Fennell

I LOVE and ADORE this show so much. This second series is great fun. The whole reason I'm rewatching the show in the first place, is while I had no trouble at all checking out the first two discs of season five from the library, there was a longer hold for the third disc. So I decided, well, why not use this "waiting time" to rewatch series two through four!

What you should know--there is no going slowly with Call the Midwife. I have found this is one to binge-watch.

The Christmas Special. It is Jenny's first Christmas at Nonnatus House. The episode focuses on the community and upcoming Christmas preparations--specifically a nativity play. The pregnant mother in this one is a teenager keeping her pregnancy secret from everyone....

Episode 1. Is the show issue-driven or character-driven? I think the answer is a bit of both. Both stories in this episode have their tragic side. In one story, we've got a girl literally brought up captive on her father's cargo ship--she being brought up to "service" all the men on board, including dear old dad. Trixie and Sister Evangelina are called to respond to this emergency call. This is one of the stories from the Call the Midwife memoir. In the other story, we've got spousal abuse. A pregnant mother (she's pregnant with her second child) is being abused by a horrid husband, and, Jenny can do little about it....

Episode 2. More than two stories in this one! Several stories last multiple episodes. So the show is becoming more like a soap opera. Only an actually good one. Cynthia (I was almost tempted to call her SISTER) has a rough time in this episode. Jenny thinks she's falling in love with Jimmy...only to find out that one of her new patients knows Jimmy much TOO WELL. Chummy decides to fulfill her dream to be a missionary in Africa with Peter's full support.

Episode 3. Jenny takes some time off from midwifery, conveniently just in time to save Jimmy's life. Jane comes to Nonnatus House. I really, truly LOVE Jane even though she doesn't stick around for the whole series. I can relate to her completely. And the fact that in the memoir she gets a good, happy ending makes me very pleased indeed. This episode also briefly introduces us to Nurse Mount. I thought nothing of it the first time around, it was only in rewatching I was like HEY, I DIDN'T KNOW SHE SHOWED UP IN THIS SEASON. The pregnancy case in this episode is STRANGE.

Episode 4. This episode mainly focuses on JANE and introduces the character of Reverend Applebee-Thornton. I LOVE LOVE LOVE parts of this one. A baby with special needs is born, and, the mother has a hard time accepting that her baby is not perfect. Can Jenny help? And how much help is too much help? I really love the husband/father in this one.

Episode 5. This episode is PAINFUL. Not because it's bad, but, because it is so very INTENSE. A woman is DETERMINED to end her pregnancy no matter what. And Jenny knows the woman is upset, but, can't really interfere and fix anything. Trixie gets in and out of a predicament when she starts dating a celebrity of sorts. Also SISTER BERNADETTE starts to show she has FEELINGS for Dr. Turner...and viewers see that he returns them!

Episode 6. Oh this episode gets to me. We're introduced to a single, pregnant woman estranged from her father. The woman is trying to keep her pregnancy secret from everyone--but Jenny knows what she knows. The woman is nine months along, and there's no fooling Jenny! The dying father is played by an actor I failed to recognize before...a familiar face from LARK RISE to CANDLEFORD. (He's not the only familiar face from that show we'll end up seeing....) Dr. Turner is able to get an X-Ray programme to come to Poplar, and Sister Bernadette is tested to show a little girl how easy and safe it is. SISTER MONICA JOAN has a fit in this one, if I remember rightly. And it's Fred to the rescue!

Episode 7. Chummy and Peter return from Africa!!! And their family is about to grow! Sister Bernadette is in a sanatorium undergoing treatment. Her crisis isn't just physical, but, spiritual as well. There are several cases in this one...but my interest was all on Dr. Turner and Sister Bernadette.

Episode 8. Jimmy introduces Jenny to his friend, Alec. Chummy has her baby, and, it's OH-SO-DRAMATIC. Fred gets a lot of attention in this one. His pregnant daughter visits, and, when her pregnancy becomes a bit complicated, it is up to Fred to babysit his grandson. Fred also gives Chummy some much-needed cheering up. Sister Bernadette makes a life-changing decision, and, reveals her name: SHELAGH. I love, love, love, love how Dr. Turner and Shelagh meet one another. Swoon!!!

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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14. Faux Fish


"Faux Fish" (watercolor on paper). 21" x 14"

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15. Announcing a "new" blog: NOW AND THEN

This July, I've started a new blog projects of sorts called Now and Then: A consistently inconsistent blog 'celebrating' the past and present. I've got some quotes up from old favorites. But mainly this week I've focused on two things I love MUSIC and iceskating. 

This week's posts:

Posts that NEED you (yes, you) to vote on something:

Country "Mexico" Songs, Now and Then #1
Country "Drinking" Songs, Now and Then #1
Battle of the Georges (George Jones vs. George Strait) #1
Battle of the Georges (George Jones vs. George Strait) #2 

Which song do you like better? Blame It On Mexico or Mexicoma? Margaritaville or Red Solo Cup? The idea of these 'battle' posts is that I'll be sharing TWO songs, and you'll help decide which of the two is your favorite.

Figure skating posts:

Evgeni Plushenko, Now and Then #1
Russian Pairs skating, Now and Then #1 

I do hope you'll visit my other blog and leave a comment or two if you're so inclined!

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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16. My Thoughts on Downton Abbey, season 1

Downton Abbey, season 1
7 episodes

Upstairs
Robert Crawley, Earl of Grantham = Hugh Bonneville
Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham = Elizabeth McGovern
Lady Mary Crawley = Michelle Dockery
Lady Edith Crawley = Laura Carmichael
Lady Sybil Crawley = Jessica Brown Findlay
Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham = Maggie Smith

Downstairs
Mr. (Charles) Carson = Jim Carter
Mrs. Hughes = Phyllis Logan
Mr. (John) Bates = Brendan Coyle
Anna = Joanne Froggatt
Gwen = Rose Leslie
Thomas Barrow = Rob James-Collier
Miss (Sarah) O'Brien = Siobhan Finneran
Mrs. Patmore = Lesley Nicol
Daisy = Sophie McShera
William Mason = Thomas Howes
Tom Branson = Allen Leech

Other Households
Isobel Crawley = Penelope Wilton
Matthew Crawley = Dan Stevens
Josephy Molesley = Kevin Doyle
Mrs. Bird = Christine Lohr

So, in the spring I was quite happy with the final season of Downton Abbey. I have never rewatched this series, so I thought this summer might be a good time. (Especially now that I've rewatched all of Call the Midwife, and there is a void in shows to binge-watch).

So, this is a rewatch. I am assuming that most people who have any interest in this one, have already seen this season, at least once. I will not purposefully come out and spoil things unnecessarily. But. I will talk freely about this season.

Equal time is spent between the upstairs and the downstairs.

People I loved downstairs = Mr. Bates, Anna, Mrs. Hughes, Mr. Carson. Now by the end of the sixth season, I can easily say that I've come to love more characters.

People I liked downstairs = William, Tom, Gwen, Daisy, Miss Patmore.

People I really DISLIKE downstairs = O'Brien and Thomas. I really LOATHE both characters. Now, O'Brien never, ever, ever redeems herself in my opinion. Thomas, on the other hand, as the series progresses, there are moments where I actually don't hate him.

People I loved upstairs: Dowager Countess and Sybil. I love the Dowager Countess!!!! Of the three sisters, Sybil is the one you'd actually want to know in real life and be friends with.

People I liked upstairs: Lady Cora, Robert Crawley, Lady Edith. Of those three, Lady Edith may be the most controversial for 'liking.' I do like Edith, however. I think Lady Mary has spent years and years and years tormenting her, without her parents ever correcting Lady Mary's behavior. I think she has dealt with a lot, not just from Mary, but from her own parents. There is a conversation in which it is revealed that neither parent thinks that anyone will ever, ever, ever want to marry Edith. Both parents assume that Edith with be the one daughter whom no one marries because no one wants, she will be the one to 'nurse' them in their old age, and, then they joke about how awful that will be to still have her around. I just CRINGED. Still, I think Robert and Cora have their redeemable moments.

People I really DISLIKE upstairs: Lady Mary. Mr. Carson may be the only person in the entire world that Mary is ever kind and respectful to. In every battle with Edith, Lady Mary seems to be the instigator. She also seems to be the one to keep adding fuel to the fire. Lady Mary is rude, hateful, spiteful, inconsiderate. Not just in private, when the two are alone, but in front of the entire family--why does her family think her rudeness is acceptable????--and as if that wasn't bad enough, in front of dinner guests as well. Lady Mary seems to exist to humiliate Lady Edith whenever, wherever possible. Now, that being said, Lady Edith, does not stand back and let Lady Mary say and do whatever without reacting and responding. I think Lady Edith was PROVOKED into doing what she did. I don't think it was inevitable. I think Mary's own actions--in more than one way--led to the gossip that 'ruined' her.

Other characters I loved: Matthew Crawley and his mother, Isobel. I honestly don't know why Matthew falls for Mary. I don't know what he sees in her, and continues to see in her, that keeps him coming around?! Mary's natural inclinations are to hurt and inflict pain at her whim. That being said, do I like Matthew in spite of his liking or loving Mary. Yes, for the most part. I do think Matthew is unnecessarily RUDE at times. For example, even though he's not interested--in that way--in Edith. He didn't have to rebuff her when she was making small talk. It wasn't as if she was saying, MATTHEW, I LOVE YOU TRULY, MADLY; FORGET ABOUT MARY, LET'S RUN AWAY THE TWO OF US, AND LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER. She was just trying to avoid an awkward situation and make the best of it. And he would have none of her small talk. Now, Edith is used to people treating her rudely, as if she is "less than." After all, her own flesh and blood treat her that way day in and day out. I think Matthew's standout moment comes when he rescues Lady Sybil, takes her to his own home, has his mother nurse her, sends for Mary, etc. When Mary seems Matthew as a HERO, that's when Mary decides that she likes Matthew after all. More than a "toy" an actual human being. Now that I think about, Lady Mary reminds me of Scarlett O'Hara.

Isobel. I really love to see her interact with the Dowager Countess. And also with Dr. Carson. She is a genuine person, and one you can't help loving.

Season 1 Highlights:
  • The family learns about the sinking of the Titanic, learns about the two next-in-line heirs being killed.
  • Lady Mary is upset not that her 'future husband' is killed but that she might lose what she's come to think of as her rightful inheritance.
  • Lady Mary invites someone to ride/hunt at Downton Abbey, and, then ignores the guest she invited to flirt with the guest her guest invited.
  • Lady Mary is NOT responsible for Mr. Kemal Pamuk coming into her bedroom--that would be Thomas who led him to her door and left him, knowing Mr. Pamuk's intentions--but she is at least partially responsible for not doing everything in her power to stop him. She was not exactly forced. She protested at first. Which makes me think that she's only partially responsible. He clearly was not a 'no' means 'no' guy. But she stopped protesting and became welcoming. To her credit, she never claims she was unwilling. Though she very well could have told her mother that he showed up in her room uninvited, and forced his attentions. Her mother might have been more sympathetic. 
  • Lady Mary's secret is voluntarily kept by Anna and her mother. It is held as ammunition by Thomas and O'Brien. Daisy also witnesses something of the aftermath.
  • The family accepts Matthew as the next heir, but, Mary is contrary and hates him except when she's flirting with him. But she only flirts with him a third of the time. The other times she leaves him confused and hurt.
  • Miss Patmore has a health crisis.
  • Daisy has an attack of conscience. And changes her mind about which footman is for her.
  • Thomas and O'Brien are set on destroying Bates. In many, many episodes, they plot and scheme. Carson seems to stay a step or two ahead of them.
  • Anna and Mr. Bates fall for each other, though, he likes to keep a little distance between them because his past is problematic.
  • Tom starts falling in love with Sybil....but she is so busy helping out Gwen that I don't think she's really noticed the swoon-worthiness of Tom just yet.
  • O'Brien reveals her evilness. And a family mourns as a result. 
  • The family learns that war has been declared.  (World War I)

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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17. Comic-Con 2016: ‘Steven Universe’ Creator Rebecca Sugar Comes Out As Bisexual

Here's why Rebecca Sugar's Comic-Con bombshell is a historic moment for animation.

The post Comic-Con 2016: ‘Steven Universe’ Creator Rebecca Sugar Comes Out As Bisexual appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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18. “Fantastic Beasts” Wands Coming to Noble Collection!

Fantastic Beasts has been taking San Diego’s Comic Con (SDCC) by storm! Introducing a new trailer, hosting live Q&A with fansites (Leaky, too!) and panels, the Fantastic Beasts cast and crew has been revealing a lot of new movie magic. Also, keep an eye on the new Wizarding World snapchat for more inside looks at SDCC 2016.

One of the snaps on the new snapchat, and also added to Twitter, revealed Eddie Redmayne showcasing Newt Scamander’s wand for Noble Collection at SDCC 2016.

 

Noble Collection is one of the greatest distributers of official Harry Potter merchandise and movie replicas. Fans have been wishing and hoping for Fantastic Beasts movie merchandise, and that indeed will eventually be the case. Even better, it seems that Fantastic Beasts merchandise and movie replicas will be added to the Noble Collection!

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19. Meet the Newest Magical Creatures of ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’!

Following the release of the newest Fantastic Beasts trailer at San Diego Comic-Con, Pottermore have taken to Twitter to release details of the creatures appearing in the trailer:

First off is the Billywig, a seemingly small, blue flying creature which apparently packs a powerful sting. They’re also suspected to be an ingredient in Fizzing Whizzbees!

Next up is the Occamy, a plumed snake-like creature which hatches silver eggs:

The Demiguise looks like a sloth and a small monkey, and its hair is used to spin invisibility cloaks!

Anybody been sorted into Thunderbird with Pottermore’s Ilvermorny sorting quiz? Here’s your mascot – a bird that can create storms as it flies!

Watch the new trailer below and read our breakdown here!

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20. Haven't I seen you someplace before? Dueling covers of girls on top of vehicles

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21. Certain Songs #600: The Hold Steady – “First Night”

hold steady boys Album: Boys And Girls in America
Year: 2006

Boys and girls in America.

I’m sure I’m conflating a bunch of different memories into a single moment, but I still have a memory of the first night I felt part of the Fresno Tower scene. It was a warm summer evening in 1985, and it was at the Wild Blue.

Boys and girls in America.

I don’t recall who was playing: it coulda been Aqua Bob or The Wayne Foundation or Western Chapter or somebody else. It doesn’t really matter, because there was as much going on outside as there was inside.


Boys and girls in America.

And by “as much” of course, I meant that there were a lot of college girls hanging around outside, not old enough to get in. Some of them I’d met at CSUF, others I hadn’t. All of whom were smart and interesting and — maybe not on that first night — were coming to the realization that maybe us boys and girls were all becoming part of something bigger, even if we couldn’t define exactly what that was.

Boys and girls in America.

But in the meantime, let’s walk over to Mayfair market across the street and get some beer so we could sit on the warm asphalt and talk.

Boys and girls in America.

When Craig Finn referenced Jack Kerouac for the title of this album — and made it a refrain in this song — he was drawing a line straight through decades of American youth, creating scene and spitting white noise for a time, and then watching it all disintegrate over time, because that’s the only possible outcome.

Boys and girls in America.

Of course, you don’t know that on the first night. Instead, you’re completely overwhelmed by the sea of possibilities, and want it to last forever just so you can experience every single one.

But of course that sea narrows down to a trickle.

Boys and girls in America.

And I think that’s what the slow, piano-driven ballad, “First Night,” is about: about coming to terms with that inevitability. And while the details of the song are different than the details of my life, the feeling it evokes is utterly spot-on.

Holly’s inconsolable
Unhinged and uncontrollable
Because we can’t get as high as we got
On that first night

So I watched our scene coalesce, climax and crash within the space of several years, and then got the hell out of town because I didn’t know what else to do, but have always wondered who I would have been if I hadn’t.

Boys and girls in America.

“First Night” performed live

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The post Certain Songs #600: The Hold Steady – “First Night” appeared first on Booksquare.

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22. More drawings of knitting

I've been busy making a lot of drawings of knitting lately, for various projects.
People are commissioning me to do custom coloring pages to promote their knitting sites and projects, which has been a lot of fun.
Here are two I did for verypink. They are both free downloadable pdfs on the site, to go with a knitting pattern for the cowl, and the boot cuffs. Staci has a youtube channel with videos for these pages and the projects they were done for. Check it out!






This is a snippet of another custom coloring page I just finished for another client that will be for kids to color. 





 I'm also working on getting some Christmasy things in my Drawings of Knitting shop on etsy. These are both gift tags, which are downloadable pdfs (or jpgs) that you can just print and cut out yourself. You can make as many as you want! I'm moving at kind of a snail's pace at the moment, just trying to do too many things at once, work-wise, but hope to have these in the shop in the next week or so. I have lots of other ideas for cool holiday crafty things (stockings!), and am working on those too. If you have any ideas or suggestions about things you'd like to see in the shop, please let me know.





I really love doing these drawings, but they do take forever. I'm getting a little faster, and am getting smarter about using Photoshop tools to change the colors of things, or cut and paste. But still, most of it is very fussy and fiddly and s-l-o-w. 

I'm still working on the next coloring book that will be fair isle designs, and argyle.


That's it for now. Back to 'knitting'! 

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23. A True Story of Mistaken Identity: TV Interview Part 4

 

Here is the fourth excerpt from the television interview I did with Kevin Avard on Gate City Chronicles. Here I tell him about a funny thing that really happened in New England during Lafayette's Farewell Tour. 

 




So I was talking without notes and muddled something: the number of Americans who turned out to see Lafayette during his Farewell Tour of 1824-5 was approximately 3 million. This was about 1/4 of the total population!

If you are unable to watch this video on your mobile device, please go here.

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24. The Leaky Cauldron at the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Q&A Event at San Diego Comic-Con!

We have been covering the unveilings of exclusive material at San Diego Comic Con’s Fantastic Beasts panel – first a trailer, and now an exclusive Q&A event with the cast – featuring a question from Leaky!

Present at the event were: Director David Yates, Producer David Heyman, Ezra Miller (Credence), Collin Farrell (Percival Graves), Eddie Redmayne (Newt Scamander), Katherine Waterston (Tina Goldstein), Dan Fogler (Jacob Kowalski) and Alison Sudol (Queenie Goldstein).

In the U.K., fans (and Leaky) were in the Great Hall at Leavesden Studios to take part in the live stream Q&A, where Fantastic Beasts costumes and props were being flaunted – unfortunately only for this exclusive event. Georgia and Gemma represented Leaky in London, so keep posted for more updates on this!

Carianne and Tabitha attended Comic-Con in San Diego on behalf of The Leaky Cauldron, Carianne managed to ask what Eddie, Katherine, Dan and Alison’s favourite parts about the wizarding world are:

Alison answered “Anything is possible, and also that it’s a beautiful world, it’s close enough to our world that it feels real and yet the possibilities and just the wonder of it, on just the tiniest little details how magic is sort of workaday in the world is just constantly inspiring” 

Katherine says “I think the idea of a parallel universe is just something I think we can all relate to. Of course children have that sense and we kind of grow up and we are kind of bred out or encouraged to stop thinking that way and stop seeing  the beauty and the possibility and the magic around us, and to consider it in this much more literal way that there could be a simultaneous world happening around us that we might not be conscious of, that we might be able to notice if you tune into it or look for it … I love that idea” 

Presenter Edith Bowman asked what it was like in San Diego when the brand new trailer was shown to audiences, and Eddie Redmayne jumped straight in with his answer, clearly excited to be at such a huge event:

“You hear so much about Comic-Con, the moment you actually walk on stage, it’s like no sensory experience you can possibly imagine – it’s so overwhelming, but so exciting”

According to Redmayne, there were people dressed as Newt Scamander in the audience!

Ezra Miller’s character has been kept closely under wraps (he does, however, feature in the new Fantastic Beasts poster), so his answer was understandably more discrete:

“I can’t tell you my favourite scene” he says, but said his favourite thing about working on the film was working with Collin Farrell, Eddie Redmayne and Samantha Morton (Mary Lou).

Alison Sudol says she is a “big Harry Potter fan” so is obviously excited to be promoting Fantastic Beasts at such a great event. “You can’t help but feel like a kid” she says, “It is magical, it’s magical to be a part of this world and to have a continuation of the universe that we all fell in love with, but it’s something new, something different” 

Dan Fogler is a loyal Comic-Con fan, who says he’s been attending the event for probably the past 15 years, and compares the excitement of attending 2016’s event to 2015:

“Last year I didn’t have much going on … then I got the call from my agent saying you know, ‘Next Comic-Con’s gonna be a lot different’, and they were right.” 

Pottermore asked the first time Eddie Redmayne learned to use a wand, which apparently happened in what turned out to be a slightly awkward experience during screen tests for the film:

“I remember David said very kindly ‘Ed, just choose a wand’ and I was like *HUGE GASP*. What was extraordinary was that your inner 9-year-old has waited for this moment all your life, and I picked the thing up, and I got complete stage fright. I had no idea what to do with it – it looked really odd in my hand so in the end I actually went back and looked at some of the Harry Potter films and looked at Dan and Emma and Rupert’s work and thieved an idea or two!”

Alison Sudol echoed this ‘stage fright’, saying that she was also concerned about whether the wand was actually magic, but that after the initial shock is over with “it becomes quite addictive” – apparently she’d found herself actually walking around at home with a wand!

Katherine Waterston said that the muscles involved in wand work were a surprise for her, saying she got a case of ‘wand elbow’.

SnitchSeeker then asked Eddie Redmayne what makes Newt Scamander a true Hufflepuff. Eddie said he’d recently taken the Pottermore sorting test:

“I’d been holding off doing it for an age because I couldn’t believe it would actually work, and I was sorted into Hufflepuff and it was the most exciting moment of my life”

“It’s his heart – he’s a complicated, knotty, at moments spiky character, but he has a wonderful heart and a passion for his creatures, and I suppose it’s those qualities which I associated with a Hufflepuff”

You can view the trailer and the full Q&A in the video on the Fantastic Beasts below, and check out our break-down of the trailer here!

Thank you to Carianne for asking Leaky’s question, and to Alison Sudol and Katherine Waterston for answering it! Many thanks to Tabitha, who joined Carianne and represented Leaky at SDCC 2016, and Gemma and Georgia, who joined the festivities at Leavesden Studios in London on Leaky’s behalf–thank you!!!

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25.

I love this little turtle! Kid's work! A lesson plan I did on repeating pattern.  Almost looks like Zentangle.

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