Superbowl Commercial BINGO

For those who want a little something to entertain themselves during the game (perhaps you don’t care about sportsbally things, or you hate both teams, or you were dragged here by your friend / SO, or you just want something silly to add to your day) – I’ve made you a little present!



superbowl commercial BINGO
^click here for the pdf^

(free .pdf print outs. Made in 2018)



Just in case it’s not obvious, I’ll give a quick rundown:

  • There are 8 different cards. Everyone gets one. Depending on the number of players, some of you will have the same card.
  • When a commercial plays of the type that is on one of your squares, you get to mark that square.
    • House rules determine if you get to mark two squares at once for one commercial.  For example, if Budweiser does a patriotic commercial, do you get to mark both “Budweiser / Bud Light” and “Something patriotic” ? That’s up to you. Decide before you play.
    • Commercials only! You don’t get to mark “Pro-Athlete on screen” during the game. Don’t be “that guy” who asks.
  • Once you have marked squares in a row (up/down, across, or diagonally) you yell BINGO
  • yelling Bingo = winning
  • yelling Bingo when you don’t have Bingo = not winning, your friends picking on you, and you have to take a drink.


Them’s the rules kiddos! Easy-peasy!



For those who want more info on how the game was built:

  • First Column = media and such
  • Second Column = food and drink
  • Third Column = technology and such
  • Fourth Column = scenes and content
  • Fifth Column = things one might see on screen


Graphics are pretty much non-existant in this simple BINGO game. I’ve come to terms with that. I hope you have too.


OH- and for those who are wondering: I used to do this blog thing when I was touring all the time and needed a creative outlet. I mostly stopped to focus on other things in my life (and now I almost have too many creative outlets! Huzzah!). However, I made this bingo for an anti-superbowl party (hence the image in the free space) and figured this would be the easiest way to share a download link in case any of you wanted to play.  I might still post some other things here and there in the future…

Click the link below to download:

superbowl commercial BINGO

This is for all 8 cards. Print on regular size paper: 8.5×11
The pdf will open in a new window. Choose to download the pdf onto your computer to save for future use or print straight from the webpage.



While we’re all here, let’s just take a moment to remember #leftshark


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Game of Thrones food puns

There are plenty of blogs and cookbooks full of recipes for your favourite foods that one may have actually found in the Seven Kingdoms.


Rather than copy the norm, I decided to give you another array of foods using my favorite recipe-maker:






Whether you want to make foods for your meat-eating dragons or your Vega-Tyrion friends, here is a list of plenty of food puns for your Game of Thrones premiere Tommenu. Bon Apetit!



Game of Thrones punny foods!



mountain dew



(made with Ice and/or Fire)


Valyrian root – beer

Edd(h)ard cider

The coffee is dark and full of flavor

Winter is coming slushie

(The god of tits and) Wine

The Mountain (Dew)

Daenerys-ling (-Reisling)

The Full Jorah Mormonty (a wine drink with liquor/poison added)


click here for a fun list of Game of Thrones cocktails and recipes (not puns, but still fantastic choices and ideas)



kale drogo and other food puns from Game of Thrones. Ideas for your GOT party!


Appetizers and Sides:


Brie (anne of Tarth)

Thai-rell spring rolls

Onion (Knight) rings (for the fingers he keeps around his neck)

Peas in a pod(rick payne)

Red (Wedding) potatoes

(Jon) Snow Peas

Wild(ling) rice pilaf


Shr-Imp cocktail

Ch-Eddar(d Stark)

Kale Drogo



shrIMP cocktail



Main Course:


Little (Chicken) Fingers

Doth-rack(i) of lamb

Sir Illian Payne (pan) pizza

Shae-ved pork

Dorne-ish game hen

Hound Dogs

Burger King-slayer


Take the Black Pudding

Grey Sausages (Theon’s Grey Joys)


burger kingslayer




Ho-Ho- dors

Red (woman) Velvet Cake

Bran Muffins

Yo-gritte (yogurt)

Grey Worm(s & dirt)

Lady Fingers

You know muffins jon snow

Oats-keeper (oath keeper)



ho ho dor





Thank you for humoring me and my punny craziness- and thank you for instigating it too! (silliness is vastly underrated).


Would you like help with your silly and awesome ideas? Pinterest is a lovely, magical place filled with all sorts of geeky goodness.
If you’d like to follow me on pinterest: Click Here: Muse Initiative

If you’d like to visit my Game of Thrones pinterest board, click here






Like these food puns?

Then check out my page of Geeky British party food puns

Cucumberbatch sandwiches- get it?

Cucumberbatch sandwiches- get it?



Or Thor’sgiving (like Thanksgiving- but more bad-ass)

hulk smash



  • What other punny Game of Thrones food ideas have you come up with? Please share below!
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Witches, wizards, and muggles alike- Join me on a photographical journey through

Salem, Massachusetts

Salem graveyard


I had the joy of visiting this quaint and lovely town in the off-season of early January. Even though the snow had not yet built up, the air was full of the sharp coldness of a port-town in the bleak mid-winter.

… Though perhaps that “sharp coldness” was just the feeling an upstate-NY-turned-Florida girl has when taken out of the semi-tropical warmth of the land of palm trees and Mickey Mouse.




By the way guys, I DO actually listen to your suggestions. This post came about after being told “Allison- you need to get out with your camera more! I miss seeing your photos!” So- there you have it friends, some photos- just for you. Thank Tom for this one. Also, if you have any suggestions for posts, or things you’d like to see more of, please comment below and let me know!


Salem graveyard



All of the graveyard photos were taken of the Old Burying Point Cemetery, located just behind the Salem Witch Trial monument.  If you want to read a bit of the history of the Witch trials, click here or here if you want the timeline of events



The Salem Witch Trials Memorial

Salem Witch Trial Memorial


There is a nice blog on the memorial here if you’d like to read more. I had to go for the artsy shot that focused on the word “Wickedness” just because it looked so awesome. However, the space has this introspective and silent air. It is quite a beautiful memorial.





The grave of Thomas Smith. Salem, MA


Salem tombstone


The grave above is that of young Thomas Smith. This gravestone is sitting kind of all by its lonesome, yet very close to the house behind it. I was told the melancholy story by Michael Shaw Fisher, and I pass it along to you now:



The tale of poor unfortunate Thomas goes like this: Right around the time when people were dying of smallpox, people thought that Thomas had died and so they buried him in this graveyard in Salem. His mother who lived in that house right next to the graveyard claimed to have heard cries from Thomas. Needless to say, everybody thought the mother was crazy. After a while, she could no longer handle her thoughts, so she went out to the graveyard and with her hands she dug up her son’s small coffin – the boy would have been about six years old. When they opened up the coffin they found scratches on the inside of the lid, verifying that he had in fact been buried alive! The mother’s intuition was right all along! Ever since then the toys in the house (seen in the background) always find their way to that corner window where Thomas’s grave is below.


Creepy, eh?




an angel in Salem

Just to give you all something happier- Look! An angel showed herself to us in a patch of ice on the sidewalk!



Salem, MA

Cool old fire and police call box on the side of the road. Too bad it’s not actually a TARDIS…




The Friendship

There are good ships,
and there are wood ships,
The ships that sail the sea.
But the best ships, are friendships,
And may they always be.


– As far as I know, this quote has nothing to do with the ship itself…. it’s a common toast, and it seemed fitting here


Friendship in Salem


Friendship in Salem



Going to Salem in the off-season has it’s perks (less people!) but also plenty of disadvantages. For one, the Friendship was not open for visiting when I went, nor was the House of the Seven Gables. Luckily, I was still able to walk around the harbour and snap some photographs of the Friendship sitting in a bath of chilly water that was trying to freeze around the large ship. Click here to learn more.




Salem fishies


Walking around on this frozen pond…. what do we see?


Salem frozen fish

Oh noes!!! Frozen fishies!!



Salem church


Nearing the end of one of our days walking around Salem, I was able to catch the first church in the golden hour (when the sun is first beginning to set and a lovely golden hue is cast over all the light the sun touches).


Salem - private property


And perhaps my favourite- this oh-so-slightly creepy “private property” sign at a park. Love it!






By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes

– Shakespeare: Macbeth. Act IV, scene i






Want to visit other places via my photographs?


Click here to visit Partnachklamm, a breathtaking gorge in Germany

beautiful partnachtklam



or Click here to visit Glendalough in Ireland (if you wanted more graveyards)

glendaloch graveyard




  • I would love to visit Salem around Halloween! Have you ever been? Tell me your story!
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13 cool facts you didn’t know about Valentine’s d Lupercalia.

(Just in time for Fifty Shades of Grey! It includes whipping! -and wolves! What’s not to like?)



Valentine’s Day is upon us, and many of you know how I like to investigate and share fun information about holidays. So, keeping that in mind, I decided to share with you all some fun information I found on a holiday that predates Valentine’s Day by a bit! Please continue with caution as there are stories and images that fragile or vanilla minds may not want to experience. For all you others, come hither and learn a bit about the interesting holiday known as:






1. Lupercalia was celebrated beginning in 44 BC, though some say it may have started at the time of the founding of Rome (traditionally 753 B.C.). It began on the ides of February (in February, the ides are the 13th) and ended on the 15th.

Yeah, we slacked and made it a one-day thing.


2. Lupercalia was a Roman holiday to honor Lupercal/Lupercus, the god of fertility.

In Roman mythology, Lupercus is a god sometimes identified with the Roman god Faunus, who is the Roman equivalent of the Greekgod Pan. Lupercus is the god of shepherds. His festival, celebrated on the anniversary of the founding of his temple on February 15, was called the Lupercalia.



3. The festival was named after Lupa, the she-wolf. She’s known for suckling the founders of Rome: Romulus and Remus.


And folks, I say that’s what’s wrong with kids today: not enough wolf teet

- Stephen Colbert

(yes, The Colbert Report produced a bit on Lupercalia. I’ve linked it at the bottom! Stay tuned!)


whathappenedtoguentherlause at wordpress


4. The priests (Lupercies) would slaughter a goat for fertility and a dog for purification (some say it was two dogs, or two goats… one dog, two goats… who’s counting?)


via (original source unknown)



5. Thongs were cut from the goat skins, dipped in blood and then in milk, and the Lupercies would run around the city whipping people. Women in town would line up to be whipped, as this was considered a way to heighten their fertility and ease the pains of childbirth.



6. The Luperci were often two young men or two boys. After blood, laughing was involved. Yes, I’m serious.

Two of the Luperci were led to the altar, their foreheads were touched with a bloody knife, and the blood was wiped off with wool dipped in milk; the ritual required that the two young men laugh.

-Encyclopedia Britannica



7. The thongs were called FEBRUA (februa….. februa…. Sounds awfully familiar, doesn’t it? … Sound it out.)



8. Some articles claim that the Luperci wore the skins of the sacrificed wolves/dogs whilst doing the whipping (perhaps leading to the early stories of werewolves?)







Well, little Jimmy, you know how halloween was once a pagan holiday and Christmas was about Krampus, or the winter solstice, or a bajillion other things prior to the Christian influences?? The Christians slyly took over this holiday as well.  Pope Gelasius I changed Lupercalia to celebrate St. Valentine in 496 AD to try to expel the pagan rituals. It eventually worked (seeing as though most of us aren’t whipped with leather thongs on valentine’s day…. most of us)


10. Why is Valentine associated with love in the first place?

At the time that the Roman Emperor, Claudis II had banned marriages for the army, St Valentine arranged marriages for the Roman Army men. This cost St. Valentine his life.


(source unknown)


11. As far as the new celebrations of Valentine’s day, it kept the same overall essence as it’s big sister, Lupercalia:

It was a little more of a drunken revel, but the Christians put clothes back on it. That didn’t stop it from being a day of fertility and love.

-Noel Lenski, a historian at the University of Colorado at Boulder via NPR 



12.  I’m sharing this bit just because I love ze bard:

Lupercalia is celebrated during William Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar.  Caesar instructs Mark Antony to strike Calpurnia in hopes the action will increase her fertility:


CAESAR (to Calpurnia)

Stand you directly in Antonius’ way,
When he doth run his course. Antonius!


Caesar, my lord?


Forget not, in your speed, Antonius,
To touch Calpurnia; for our elders say,
The barren touched in this holy chase,
Shake off their sterile curse.

William Shakespeare



13. I’m sharing this bit just because I love ze Colbert:


The Colbert Report
Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,The Colbert Report on Facebook,Video Archive
(The Colbert Report did a bit on Lupercalia! Win!)




And in conclusion, to everyone, everywhere: I hope you have a fantastic Lupercalia!


Happy Lupercalia

The Lupercalian Festival in Rome (ca. 1578–1610), drawing by the circle of Adam Elsheimer, showing the Luperci dressed as dogs and goats, with Cupid and personifications of fertility







If you’d like to check facts, the links below are just a few of those that show my research:

(remember that the “facts” are just what we have gathered- it’s not a 100% certainty)


Encyclopedia Britannica


Ancient history at




Love holidays?


Click here to read my top 5 High Fives (yes, there is a holiday for that)


Click here for my Earth day celebratory post!



  • So, which are you celebrating? Lupercalia or Valentine’s Day?
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Ideas for making a great Steampunk costume

(even if you’re just throwing it together)


steampunk trio 2


Holy crazy, batman! It’s been quite some time since I’ve delivered a post for you all. My apologies! To make it up to you all, I’m sharing a post about a topic I haven’t yet covered at all: Steampunk!


My soon-to-be-roommate and I decided to completely geek it up the other weekend and visit two awesome themed faire-type events:

  1. Hoggetowne Medieval Faire in Gainesville, Florida. I’ve been to a few of these, and I had even performed at this one last year for a weekend. It was great times. Perhaps I’ll do a Ren Faire post someday :)
  2. Steampunk Industrial Show in Mt Dora, Florida. I had never been to one, and have never attempted to make any Steampunk garb, but we were up for the challenge!  Special thanks to my friends from the awesome Celtic folk duo Jig to a Milestone for posting about it!


What in the world is Steampunk anyway?


According to Google:

steampunk definition google


According to Urban Dictionary:

steampunk definition urban dictionary


Or as US young fiction author Caitlin Kittredge put it:

“It’s sort of Victorian-industrial, but with more whimsy and fewer orphans…”


When thinking about Steampunk fashion, where do I start?


Wikipedia give the following blurb about Steampunk fashion. I’m altering it to be a slightly easier to read list format for you all:


Steampunk fashion has no set guidelines but tends to synthesize modern styles with influences from the Victorian era. This may include:

  • bustles
  • corsets
  • gowns
  • petticoats
  • suits with waistcoats
  • coats
  • top hats
  • tailcoats
  • spats
  • military-inspired garments

Steampunk-influenced outfits are usually accented with several technological and “period” accessories:

  • timepieces
  • parasols
  • flying/driving goggles
  • ray guns.

Modern accessories like cell phones or music players can be found in steampunk outfits, after being modified to give them the appearance of Victorian-made objects.

Post-apocalyptic elements [can also be included], such as

  • gas masks
  • ragged clothing
  • tribal motifs



So then, effective Steampunk. Guidelines. Standby. and Go:

1. Choose a time-period

The easiest way to look like you’re really trying to do Steampunk is to give it some Victorian influences.

The national garment cutter book of diagrams (1888) via



Ladies, choose a shirt with lace, a slightly ruffed collar, a big skirt, or add a bustle to your garb. I made one quite quickly using an old window covering I had, safety pins, and cool-looking buttons:

make a steampunk bustle

Make an easy bustle: This sun-bleached window covering was doubled over and pinned with the safety pins on the inside and a button on the outside. Gathered into 2 layers and using a standard belt to hold it to the body. No sewing needed!

steampunk garb fire faerie


Other victorian female costume inspirations:


Gents- wear a waistcoat and a jacket, a coat with tails, or a top hat.

I cannot credit this, but would love to if you know the origin!


Steampunk need not be JUST for English-folk. Granted, it is most popular in the realms of British culture, but Steampunk characters can also be from plenty of other countries. The American Wild West is a popular alternative.  Visit this page for multicultural Steampunk ideas.



1. b. OR Choose a character

There are some great ideas for superheroes, disney princesses, fictional characters, and the like.


A friend of mine made a Steampunk Duffman (Simpsons) costume! It was pretty rad.

steampunk duffman



We had fun taking photos where Duffman was being useless but looking cool, and the ladies were “doing all the work” (err- driving the ship, and navigating… or something).

steampunk trio


Want some other inspiration for steampunk characters?

Steampunk Batman and Ivy


Star Wars steampunk! Source: Steampunk Fashion


Steampunk Abraham Lincoln vampire hunter

Steampunk Cyberman. Doctor Who via kyoob on etsy

Steampunk Disney


It need not be a specific character, either!  Try brainstorming ideas for a steampunk pirate, ballerina, ringmaster, US president, playboy bunny, zombie … the options are endless!


Use one of these ideas or come up with your own! Use some of the ideas presented here and do a little bit of research if you need help brainstorming. Feel free to write me and I’ll help you out too! I’d love to see a steampunk version of Winnie the Pooh, Inspector Gadget, Madonna, or Captain Planet for example. Why not?

1. c. OR Choose a mythological creature

My friend and I hinted at the fae with our costumes seeing as we both wore wings. Together we decided we were ice and fire, or sun and moon… or something like that… yeah….

steampunk wings


Let’s take a closer look at my wings (the brown owl-feather ones) :

steampunk wings and bustle close

Cool, eh? You may never suspect that I found these at Party City around halloween time, though you can shop their wings online year-round. I did absolutely nothing to them; that center diamon-jewel thing was part of them from the get-go! The only catch is that they aren’t too fantastically made, so the feathers fall out after a few uses, but that’s where I got the feather for my hat!


Pan, Unicorn, Merfolk, Centaurs, Faeries/Fairies, Narwhals… There are a lot of options. Why do the fae need technology when perhaps they can do it all with magic? Because it’s fun. And they’re Tesla fans. I don’t know. Go ask the good folk.


The joy with being a mythological character is you can always say that something you’re wearing (or doing) is just, uh… magic! uh.. yeah- that’s it.  It gives a bit more freedom.



2. Add technology!

Ideally, one wouldn’t just glue gears to something and call it steampunk (not that I’m above that… check out my home-made mini top hat below).

steampunk hat


One of the coolest things about steampunk is the idea of technological innovation.


A friend of mine made these amazing wings below. Yes, they opened and unfurled as well. Pretty darn cool I must say! (though, he did say they got heavy after a while… The prices one pays to look awesome). He does this stuff professionally, so feel free to contact him for commissions.

steampunk working wings



You can go buy some of your own on Etsy (via someone I don’t know, but they sure look great):

TGTstudios on Etsy


Another gent at the event wore this backpack of gadgetry.

steampunk backpack


It’s quite popular to turn old nerf or play guns into Steampunk guns:


There’s a pretty good tutorial on painting your own gun here


I made one too- you can see it hanging from my belt below:

steampunk girlies


When in doubt, just remember- What Would Tesla Do?

What would Tesla do

What would Tesla do? Yes, this is seriously a shirt you can buy from



3. Accessorize!

Pocket watches, jewelry, goggles, top hats, spats, collars… there are so many ways to accessorize!  Rather than write a whole lot of words and lists, I’m providing you an array of photographical inspiration:


The Ultimate Steampunk for Men Etsy


Yet another photo Im not able to credit. Please let me know if you can help give credit!



Steampunk costume and garb ideas. tree of life. jewelry. diy.

This is a tree of life pendant I made with standard jewelry wire and some gears I found at Michaels. The structure was made from a shower curtain ring!



via poppenkraal on etsy


kvodesign at etsy


black steampunk top hat

I made this mini top hat out of foam! If I get requests for it, perhaps I’ll do a DIY post someday….


DesignsByFriston on Etsy




4. …. But What about….?


Still have concerns? – Don’t worry- it’s all about having fun and making the attempt!

Don’t have the “right shoes”? – If you can, wear simple black heels, boots, or dress shoes.  If you can, make spats to go with them.  If you’re stuck with just tennis shoes/sneakers (depending on where you’re from), don’t let that keep you from trying on the rest of it! If anyone is judging you, they need better things to do with their life!

Not sure where to even start/this is overwhelming?  Take a breath, wear a buttoned shirt and pants, or a suit if you can. Add a waistcoat. Or a coat with tails. Get a long skirt and add safety pins to bustle it up a little.

**If you’re going to a steampunk event, there are usually vendors! Wear something simple and plan on adding to it throughout the day! Easy-peasy.**

But my friend says I NEED such-and-such to be steampunk!  No, you don’t “need” anything to be steampunk. Even what I’ve written is just a bunch of ideas to help inspire. The guidelines are very wibbly-wobbly, so don’t fret. Try it out! You may just surprise yourself.

But I don’t have anything ready/I cannot sew! My friend and I (below) are both seamstresses (ok, ok… *She* is a seamstress. I just sew things). And neither of us really planned our costumes. We didn’t buy patterns from Joann’s, we didn’t break out the sewing machines, we just used items we had and added pins and magic to help make it all come together:

steampunk girls inside



Need more inspiration?? Check out these films/books:

Jules Verne’s Around The World In 80 Days and 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Baron Munchausen

Alice In Wonderland

The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen

Back to the Future III

Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters

Return to Oz

Wild Wild West

Sherlock Holmes



The Golden Compass



Also, I do a lot of research on things- do feel free to utilize the research I’ve already done!

Check out (or follow) my Pinterest Steampunk folder

Or just check me out on Pinterest (there’s plenty more things than steampunk on there! Most recently- viking research!)




I truly hope this post has given you some insight on where to start when coming up with your own steampunk garb/persona. Please comment below and share your own makings!

steampunk girls


Want to check out more geeky things?


Click here to see ideas for throwing a thor’s giving (instead of thanksgiving)

thorsgiving instead of thanksgiving


Click here to check out our Geeky British Party and get ideas for throwing your own!

Sir Francis BACON!!!  tee hee!

Sir Francis BACON!!!
tee hee!


  • Have you made any cool steampunk garb? Share it below!
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Throw a Hobbit party!!

or at least get in the Hobbity spirit!




The final Hobbit movie is out today!!!! To celebrate, I wanted to share some inspiration and ideas for creating your own Hobbit and Middle Earth festivities!


how to throw a hobbit party. LOTR party ideas. Lord of the Rings

image given by the Hobbit films!



I actually threw a hobbit/LOTR themed birthday party (yeah, for adults.) a few years back. It was right around Hobbit day, September 22nd, which is the birthday of both Bilbo and Frodo.


So if you don’t have time to throw a party right now for the final film, just bookmark this page so you can throw a party for Hobbit day next year!


The Shire Sign



Without further ado, here are some suggestions for Hobbit shenanigans (Hobbit-nanigans? Hobnigans?) :





  • Listen to the music from the films! Howard Shore did a fantastic job creating the aural world of middle earth. Give him (and your elf ears) some love by listening to the soundtracks.
  • Are you in a symphonic band? Did you know that there was a Lord of the Rings symphonic suite written in the 1980s? Check it out! It was composed by Johan de Meij.
  • Check out this video of my roommate and I performing “Concerning Hobbits”
  • Want to play the music from Bilbo’s Birthday party? I transcribed it once for a friend. Check it out here:


  • That music (Which I decided to title “Shire shindig”) comes from the scene below:






  • Make some food that one would find in Middle Earth:
    • Though I don’t believe they’re ever mentioned in the books, eating cherry tomatoes in a very sloppy manner would be fantastic, and remind me of one of my favourite scenes in the LOTR trilogy:

  • Cows were never mentioned. So no beef. But Fish, Pigs, and poultry are all game. Rashers of bacon are always appreciated.
  • Berries, mushrooms, pastries, breads, cheese, pickles.


  • Special items from middle earth: lembas bread, honey-cakes, cram.
  • Or just make something that LOOKS fitting or is cleverly titled:
    • A friend brought over a “yorkSHIRE pudding” for my party as well. It was fantastic!
    • I made this “one ring” cake (using a bundt pan. It fit exactly half of the inscription from the ring)

one cake to rule them all


  • Beverages are important of course!
    • Ale, wine, and mead all are quite fitting for middle earth:
      • “you can drink your fancy ales, you can drink them by the flagon, but the only brew for the brave and truuuuuuueeeeeee….. COMES FROM THE GREEN DRAGON!” (sung by Merry and Pippin whilst drinking and dancing on the table)


    • Ent-draught (an invigorating brew from the Ents)
    • Mirovor (a clear cordial from the elves)
    • Coffee, tea, and juice are viable alternatives for those not partaking in the alcohol.




    • There are plenty of LOTR-based games that exist (I’ve not played them. Feel free to leave comments about any of them if you have!)
      • Video: Various ones were made from companies such as Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment; Turbine, Inc; and Electronic Arts.
      • RPG (Role Playing Games): Middle-Earth Role Playing, Lord of the Rings Adventure Game
      • Tabletop: Other than there being a “Lord of the Rings” boardgame, there are also LOTR versions of Risk, Stratego, Monopoly, and Chess amongst others.
    • I was actually geeky enough to write a LOTR/Hobbit based fluxx game.
      • Since it’s an ACTUAL game written by a company, I will not share the game here as I’m pretty sure that’s against some copyright. But if you’re my friend and you want to play it, let me know! It’s actually pretty cool- and well-written if I do say so myself (I made a spreadsheet and everything).
    • You could write yourself a version of “heads up” in the spirit!
      • “heads up” is that game where the person who is “it” holds a card (or smart phone with app) up to their forehead and the other players need to get the person to say what is on the card.
      • You can write your own heads up game by writing flash cards using index cards or cut pieces of construction paper.
      • Things you could write on the cards include:
        • Characters: Gandalf, Frodo, Galadriel, Tom Bombadill, Fili and Kili, Eowyn, etc.
        • Races/Types of characters: Entwives, Elves, Orcs, Nazgul, Men, etc.
        • Places: Rivendell, Bag End, Green Dragon Inn, Mordor, Helm’s Deep, Erebor, etc.
        • Popular quotes: “It comes in pints?”, “one ring to rule them all”, “you shall not pass!”, “… and my axe”, “my precious”, etc.
        • People: JRR Tolkien, Peter Jackson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler, etc.
        • Book or film names: “Battle of the Five Armies”, “Fellowship of the Ring”, “The Silmarillion”, etc.
      • Or just play any fun game they may have played: charades, musical chairs, sack races, horseshoes, etc.





    • Banners, streamers, lights, candles, lanterns, and other festive décor can be utilized in feeling more festive in a proper style!


joannavolavka via wordpress

  • Fireworks (or at least sparklers) would have been brought by Gandalf to add to the festivities! If you don’t have your own and live in the Orlando area, visit SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration, Universal Studios, or any of the Disney festivities to see some fun and festive fireworks displays!
  • Create your own sign!
    • One is a large piece of fabric that I painted with fabric paint to say “welcome to the shire” with the feel of Bilbo’s birthday banner.
    • Another is a door sign that says “No Admittance. Unless on Party Business (in which case, please come in)” J Like the one that Bilbo has on his door (but a bit friendlier). It’s also nice to just let people come in as they wish during a party without needing to get the door for everyone.

Welcome to the Shire Sign and no Admittance

  • Add some Hobbit-style goodness to other things around your home:
    • I made a geeky tree skirt for Christmas this year. The LOTR reference portion is the white tree of Gondor (Other bits include Doctor Who / Tardis, Harry Potter, and Sherlock).

Geeky Tree Skirt Geeky Tree skirt christmas tree





  • Read passages from the Hobbit or LOTR books (out loud or to yourself). Try reading them in the voice of Gandalf. Or Gollum.
  • Learn some phrases in a middle earth language (Sindarin, Entish, Quenya, etc)
    • Gi nathlam hi = you are welcome here (Sindarin)
    • Dol gin lost = your head is empty (Sindarin)
    • Heca = scram! (Quenya)
    • Mara Mesta = Good journey (Quenya)
    • You can just mumble low and long to attempt a phrase in Entish….. no matter what, you’ll likely not speak it correctly, unless you’re an Ent.
  • Poems
    • Have a haiku or a limerick competition. Or just a giant piece of paper on the wall where people can write their own poems.
  • Give the gift of a homemade card for your friends, or draw your own map of middle earth. Use this one I made below as inspiration:
  • tolkien hobbit LOTR graduation hand made card





    • Go on an adventure! Go find something new and try it out!
    • Go on a trip somewhere unexpected! Throw a dart at a map of your city, or of the globe! You never know what sort of fun crazy stories you’ll have to write in your own “there and back again” book.

    thereichenbachfall on wordpress

    • Go visit nature! Take a walk in the woods, or some cavern- but look out for dragons (unless it’s the green dragon inn… then go get thyself a pint!)
    • If you’re near Orlando, go on your own quest and visit It’s a Trap! A Room Adventure in Orlando (click here for information)!
      • It’s a Trap is a place where you work together with a group of 8 or less people (you need not know them prior to the adventure. One does not always get to choose quest partners) in order to solve a mystery by finding clues hidden around a room. There are currently 4 games total in 2 different rooms. One of the rooms happens to be a Wizard’s Hut- so it’s quite fitting.
      • I actually helped kickstart this place- and I got to go to a beta test of it. The quest we did was in the wizard’s hut and had a dragon character that talked to us! It’s definitely worth a visit. Below are some poor iphone photographs of the inside of the hut (taken with permission. And no spoilers!)

    Its a Trap TreeIts a Trap Dragon

    • Or go have a pint at the Cloak and Blaster! They have games and hobbit-inspired food as well as Hobbit-Hour (much like happy hour, but more geeky/awesome)

    Click here for more info about The Cloak and Blaster in Orlando




    And last but most certainly not least,



    Click here for the Fandango movie overview

    (Or see the previous films! Or go see the old cartoon one!)


    image from Fandango



    oh, but check with your closest friends first, unless you want to no longer be friends:



    • Have you any ideas for throwing a Hobbit party? Please share them below!
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    Thor’s giving!

    It’s that time of year!


    Thor’s giving!


    Wait, what? You mean THANKSGIVNG…. right?


    No, no… I mean- Thorsgiving!  Thanksgiving is old hat. We need to spice things up- and geek things up!


    thorsgiving instead of thanksgiving


    Yeah, this idea started approximately ONE DAY prior to our “Friendsgiving” (where you get a bunch of friends together- most of whom don’t have families in town. Sometimes called “Orphan Thanksgiving”) festivities. So it was a lot of last-minute silly planning and fun.


    Someone gave me the idea of hulk smash potatoes- and I took the idea and ran with it. Sadly, we had so much fun, I didn’t take many photos of our food :( But I’ll list a bunch of ideas here so you can use them at will!


    hulk smash



    Food ideas for Thor’s giving:

    • Hulk Smash potatoes
      • green food coloring + potatoes.
      • Or add wasabi paste for more spice and oddness!
    • Iron man’s suit salad
      • Using only red and yellow items! I made a salad with yellow bell peppers, yellow onions, red bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, and sun-dried tomatoes. I made a sun-dried tomato pesto dressing.
    • Hawk-eyed peas
      • Black eyed peas
    • As American as Captain America’s Apple Pie
    • Nick Fury Brownies (ours were made with Kraken rum too… for fun!)
    • Black Widow Cookies
      • ours were pumpkin sugar cookies that we decorated with a pomegranate seed for the red spot and black frosting to draw the spider
    • Tony Starch (Stark) bread
    • or Agent Phil Crumbson rolls
    •  –with Doctor Bruce Butter
    • Shawarma
    • Thoreos
    • Lokit-kats
    • Hulk poop casserole
      • Green bean casserole
    • Natasha Stroganoff
    • Erik Stuffing (Selvig)
    • Loki Turkey
      • (or Thor-key)
    • Black (widow) pudding
    • Maria Hill of yams
      • make sweet potato/yam dish- form into a hill.
    • Clint Bacon (Barton)
    • Stark-bucks coffee
      • for your after-dinner beverage



    nick fury brownies and black widow cookies


    Don’t forget to use the OVEN-gers to do all your baking. hahah. ha. ha…..

    Your iron pan is likely to come in handy. hahaahaah. ha…..

    Be sure to provide salt and Pepper Potts so your guests can adjust flavor. hahaa. ha.


    I need a life.




    It was a pretty low-key event (snicker). But we certainly had lots of fun! We ended the night playing Cards Against Humanity. Who doesn’t love that game? Seriously?


    thorsgiving full of friends

    note the hulk-smash potatoes front and center

    Sadly, this year, I will be flying a red eye home from working in Brazil (through my least favorite airport in the world. GRU- Sao Paulo). So we won’t be hosing a Thor’s giving this year. No reason you can’t though!


    Go forth and with the might of all Asgard, have a pun-tastic Thor’s giving (or normal thanksgiving, if you so desire)



    Want more geeky things?

    Click here to check out the top three moments in the Game of Thrones books versus the TV show

    or Click here to get ideas on making your own Hobbit card!

    tolkien hobbit LOTR graduation hand made card


    Haven’t had enough puns?

    Click here for food ideas for a Geeky British Party

    British Geeky Party. Facebook Event Cover Photo


    • Have you any great Avengers food puns? Please share them below!
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    Dia de los muertos

    dia de los muertos in mexico city


    Two years ago I was working on tour with Ricky Martin and had the opportunity to be in Mexico City for Halloween and


    Dia de los muertos


    Day of the dead

    It was a pretty cool experience and I wanted to share some photos of the weekend with you all:


    Dia de los muertos (Day of the dead) in mexico city



    I meant to post this FOR Day of the Dead celebrations, not AFTER. Sorry guys. Well, I still wanted to give you a little love, so here you have it! I never posted my awesome halloween costume from last year because I’m still waiting for some actual good photos of it. One of these days…


    Dia de los muertos (Day of the dead) in mexico city




    I spent some time wandering the city and snapping photos of these altars. They were all over the place! Even in our hotel lobby. It definitely made the atmosphere quite festive.

    Halloween night itself a  group of us roadies went bar hopping. I remember we started in an Irish pub. I know, I know…. it DID feel a bit odd to be drinking Guinness in an Irish pub in Mexico city on Halloween, but us roadies stick together! I brought a pumpkin baggie full of tequila chocolates and went reverse trick-or-treating (I handed out the tequila candies to strangers and friends). It was good times.





    Dia de los muertos (Day of the dead) in mexico city




    Day of the Dead (Spanish: Día de Muertos) is a Mexican holiday observed throughout Mexico and around the world in other cultures. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died.


    Dia de los muertos (Day of the dead) in mexico city



    Dia de los muertos (Day of the dead) in mexico city




    It is particularly celebrated in Mexico where the day is a public holiday. Prior to Spanish colonization in the 16th century, the celebration took place at the beginning of summer. It was moved to October 31, November 1 and November 2 to coincide with theRoman Catholic triduum festival of Allhallowtide: All Hallows’ Eve, Hallowmas, and All Souls’ Day.[2][3] Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars called ofrendas, honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed, and visiting graves with these as gifts. Visitors also leave possessions of the deceased at the graves.


    (thanks to Wikipedia for the paragraphs when I’m slacking)


    Dia de los muertos (Day of the dead) in mexico city




    The following year when I was on tour with Jennifer Lopez in Germany. We had a show (with a load in and load out) on halloween and some of us decided to dress up- even though we were working. And then as a throwback to this time in mexico, myself and another friend decided to do some Dia de los muertos face painting.


    day of the dead makeup


    We had planned to remove the halloweeny bits for show, but Jennifer said she was happy that some of us dressed up and encouraged us to stay in costume/makeup for the show.


    day of the dead makeup


    I ran hand-held camera (thank pete I painted only half face, otherwise I would have gotten the makeup all over the camera, or would have needed to remove it), and at one point was on stage with her VERY visible- with this makeup, black and red tights, a black lace veil, etc….


    day of the dead makeup


    It was a fun time- and she loved it.





    Curious about other adventures?

    Click here to see photos of Saint-Pierre, Martinique where you can learn about the beheaded and bloody Empress Josephine statue.

    beheaded and bloody Empress Josephine statue in martinique



    Or if you want something more chipper, click here to visit Disney’s Flower and Garden Festival

    ~pirate fairy


    And standby for ideas on throwing your own Thorsgiving (yeah, that’s Thanksgiving, marvel-style)



    • Sugar skulls are such an “in” thing now! Have you done any sugar skull festive things for these autumn holidays?
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    Halloween BINGO

    Alright friends! I got excited this morning and decided to make you all a gift!


    Halloween BINGO!


    Halloween Bingo! Free download at


    I’ll be throwing a last-minute mini party/game night at my place. I’ll be home for the first time in about 4 years, and will actually get to hand out goodies to trick or treaters! So, I decided to add a new game to the mix!


    If it’s not obvious, I’ll give a quick rundown:


    • There are 8 different halloween cards. Everyone gets one (or two?)
    • When a trick or treater arrives at your door with the aforementioned costume, you get to mark that square.
    • Once you have marked squares in a row (up/down, across, or diagonally) you yell BINGO
    • yelling Bingo = winning
    • yelling Bingo when you don’t have Bingo = not winning, your friends picking on you, and you have to take a drink.


    Feel free to change it up if you wish:

    • Bring your cards downtown and check off what costumes you see tramping around the pubs.
    • Having a large costume party? Just play using the people in attendance and what they’re wearing.



    Them’s the rules kiddos! Easy-peasy!


    What sorts of costumes will you be looking for?

    • Characters from Frozen (a given this year)
    • Superheros
    • A specific historical figure
    • Athlete
    • Minion
    • Group costume (3 or more people)
    • Pirate
    • Vampire or Werewolf
    • and many more!



    I hope you all enjoy!




    Click the link below to download:

    (this is for all 8 cards. Print on regular size paper: 8.5×11. PDF file)

    Halloween BINGO free download at


    (the pdf will open in a new window. Choose save to save the pdf onto your computer.)


    Want more Halloween fun?


    Click here for some halloweeny cupcake ideas

    halloween cupcake decorating ideas! The mummy is my favorite!




    • Planning to play halloween bingo? Did you already play it? What did you think?
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    Halloweeny Cupcakes!

    YAAAY!!! It’s autumn! That means it’s almost halloween- arguably one of the best holidays of the year! So I’ve decided to do a series of halloween-related posts for your enjoyment! Since I’m not home much at the moment, I will need to rely on old photographs!

    halloween cupcake decorating ideas! The mummy is my favorite!



    Most of you may remember that I like decorating cupcakes in fun ways but I don’t use fondant. I know that means I lose in quality sometimes, but that’s a price I’m willing to pay for better tasting frosting.


    If you’ve forgotten how I love to decorate cupcakes, just visit this post about my geeky cupcakes (well, some of them. I haven’t posted about all of them yet).

    star wars superhero cupcakes


    Or visit this post about St Patricks day workplace ideas, where you can see a batch of Irish-themed cupcakes I had decorated once for the office.

    irish cupcakes




    But I digress…. back to HALLOWEEN!


    I’ve made two different groups of cupcakes in the past which have included the following characters:


    halloween cupcake decorating ideas!


    You may notice that sometimes I color using sprinkles. I enjoy this because it changes things up a little, and I have one less color to mix :)


    Speaking of color, definitely invest in the gel icing color instead of using the liquid stuff. It will help keep your frosting the correct consistency without you needing to add powdered sugar.

    That means if all you have is the liquid stuff and it makes your frosting too runny, you can add powdered sugar to help stiffen it back up.

    Oh, but if you purchase a box set of the gel color (I got mine at Michael’s), open it before you get home to be sure it has ALL the colors. I was very sad to find out mine had two maroons, but no black :( I was a sad panda.


    halloween cupcake decorating ideas!




    So, what other trick-or-treat goodies might you anticipate in the following weeks you ask? Well, here are a few hints:

    • Three years ago I was lucky enough to be working in Mexico for Halloween… which means I was there for dia de los muertos (day of the dead).
    • Last year, I was working for Beyoncé and was in Sydney for Halloween. She threw a cast and crew party, so I knew I had to go big (just kidding, I’d go big anyway). Being on the road and having no sewing machine, I needed to get creative but still wanted to MAKE a costume. I will go so far as to say it is arguably one of the coolest costumes ever, and certainly one of the most awesome things I’ve ever made (I’m waiting on one of my photographer friends from the tour to find some better photos… somehow, all the ones I have are just ok).

    Subscribe to keep posted on these fun upcoming bits!



    Want more fun stuff?


    Click here to see photos of Partnachklamm, a beautiful gorge in Germany in Autumn

    fall foliage

    gorge from above

    Or if you want to geek out about holidays, click here for the top 5 high fives in TV and Movies- for national High-five day!




    • Have you done any Halloween cake/cupcake decorating? Share your stories and links below!


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