see synonyms at monster (embroidery no. 7)


For #familybookclub  this quarter, we read Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides. (We’ll plan a video/phone chat soon to discuss!) In Middlesex, our narrator tells the story of a Greek family over three generations and a rogue gene that shows up in the youngest member of the Stephanides family and changes his fate.

Our narrator Cal is born as Callie. He is intersex, and has both male and female genitals. His family raises him as Callie, a woman, and later, after learning more about himself, he becomes Cal, a man.

To tell how Callie became Cal, he begins the story of his ancestors, starting with how his grandparents, who are brother and sister, fall in love. As Cal learns more about who he is, he visits a doctor, who calls him a hermaphrodite. Cal is young, and still Callie at this point, and doesn’t understand the word. So Callie looks it up in the dictionary. And to her horror, finds the words “see synonyms at monster.”

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all about the dress

Dresses are so great. You only have to put on one thing and you are totally professional and put together. It couldn’t be easier!


I love this dress. I love the lines, I love the color, I love how it goes with tights because it’s still cold out. And on that note, I love that it looks just as good with or without my coat.

dress with coat

What do you do to make getting dressed easier?

mark does stuff event

Have you guys heard of Mark? He reads. And watches. And just generally does stuff. And it’s awesome.

Mark is a blogger who, in his words, runs in an online book (or TV) club where everyone but him has read the book (or seen the show). He reviews things chapter by chapter, and episode by episode, and picks series or books that are generally pretty big in pop culture but that he hasn’t had any exposure to. It’s so much fun.

I found Mark when someone asked me if I heard of this guy reading Harry Potter for the first time online. Obviously, I was interested. He started this adventure by reading Twilight after it became the It Book of the week (year? decade? oof). After that, he moved on to Harry Potter, and then on to, well, a lot more. He now runs two main sites–Mark Reads and Mark Watches–along with videos, Mark Plays, and attending conferences and blogger events all over the country.

I love reading (and watching) with Mark. His background is so very different from my own and I love hearing his perspective. I, like Mark, also like to read the newest phenomenon to see what everyone is talking about. And hearing him talk about the same things I’m reading with an entirely new view helps me learn and grow.

I’m so impressed with him. He’s created his own blogging business and truly seems to make the most of it. And it works because he’s totally, completely, and sincerely himself. And he is an open, friendly, caring person who focuses on making his sites a safe space for all. No spoilers are allowed on anything Mark does, and neither are slurs or derogatory language of any kind. He also does the best he can to make his products and his events free or a very low price so everyone can come. I admire his reading and writing, but most of all I admire his spirit.

Last week, Mark came to New York on his tour. And I got to go! It was a blast. He read some terrible fan fiction and just hung out with his readers. Everyone who came was kind and enthusiastic, much like Mark himself. One of my goals this year is to plan an event, in the hopes of being able to actually host one in the future. I’d be lucky if it were anything like Mark’s.

And yes, I did forget to take pictures. But you can see a video of him reading the letter Regarding Twilight Sparkle at our event. (language–and topic?–nsfw)

game of thrones outfit inspiration: margaery

I’m so glad to be back in the TV land of Game of Thrones. George R.R. Martin has created a beautiful and dense world, full of intrigue and crisscrossing relationships. And the sets and dragons on the show are certainly nothing to sneeze at. Last night was the first episode of the third season on this HBO hit. 

Margaery won the episode with her manipulative schmoozing at the orphanage and the dinner table. What to wear when having dinner with your hopefully future husband (and current psycho king) and his powerful and beautiful mother? Lets take a cue from Margaery and dress to our assets.


Margaery knows she’s beautiful, and she knows how to play that up. The cut outs are perfect. A flash of skin can be sexy and classy. It shows her confidence and beauty without trying too hard or going overboard. Understated kingdom-stealing with a positive, no-nonsense attitude is what we’re going for here. In real life, that might translate to something like this.


You are bringing your A game if you pair a cut out top with silver pumps, that’s for sure. However, if you want to make a good impression on your maybe future mother in law and aren’t trying to steal the crown from her cold, jewel-adorned fingers, I’d recommend showing a little less skin, but still showing off a little bit of a fun. Maybe like this.


Whether you want to show off your sweet or sassy side, I bet Margaery has a lot to teach us. Let’s check in again on our favorite wannabe kings and queens next week?