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Knowledge of our past is our inheritance. What we do with that knowledge will shape our destinies...

Thursday, March 28, 2013

FF--Most Emotional Scenes

Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs! 

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the po.st that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you! 



Tell us about the most emotional scene you've ever read in a book - and how did you react?

Lots of epic, emotional scenes out there, but one that sticks out in my mind is from A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. I read it in the 10th grade and the way the teacher did it was interesting. She would have us read/discuss a few chapters, then not pick it up for several weeks or even months. She did that constantly so it took us all year to finish it. I know a lot of my classmates weren't a fan of this tactic, but I kind of liked it, only because the book covers several years and by taking all school year to read it, it kind of felt like we were keeping real time with the story.

Anyway, there's a scene where Lucy finds out her husband is going to be executed and she swoons. Carton catches her and carries her home. He obviously already knows what he's going to do, so when he lays Lucy down in her home, he puts his mouth close to her ear and whispers, "The life you love."

I remember my heart just melting when I read that. To make it more interesting, Lucy's young daughter enters and makes a comment about Carton being in love with her mother. Interesting that a child had that kind of insight. 

Anyway, I haven't read it since high school, but I still remember the story (especially that scene) and the impact it had on me.

How about you? What's the most emotional scene you've ever read?

Thoughts for Thursday--Fairy Tales

Thoughts for Thursday is a new meme hosted by Musings on Fantasia and LKHill.  In this meme, we share thoughts or quotes that we know or have recently come across. Each week there is a specific subject or theme. These can be quotes from books, quotes by famous people, (quotes by YOU, perhaps ;D). Anything from anywhere is game, though we do ask that you keep your quote to a few sentences at most. Don't quote, for example, entire passages of a book or essay. These can be funny quips, cool sayings, hair-raising antidotes, movie lines, any kind of quote you can think of!

Just have fun, collect awesome sayings by awesome people, and try to be inspired!

This week's theme is quotes about fairy tales!


Fairy tales do not tell children that dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children that dragons can be killed.--G.K. Chesterton

Dragons and bridges are very much something out of fairy tales and fantasy.--John Howe

When fairy tales are written in the west, they're known as folklore. In the east, fairy tales are called religions.--Paul Henderson

Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.--Hans Christian Anderson

Every man's life is a fairy tale written by God's fingers.--Hans Christian Anderson
What do you think? Which quote is your favorite? Do you have one to add?

P.S. I'm doing a guest post today over at Kinx's Book Nook about why I love to read. Hop on over and check it out! :D

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Great Conflicts--Guest Post

Today I've agreed to guest post over at the fabulous Ann Marie Meyer's blog about great conflicts. Hop on over there and see what you think! And be sure to thank Ann-Marie for hosting me! :D Happy Wednesday!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday--Historical Recommendations

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

Top Ten (Classic/Historical) Books I Recommend the Most

What's That Got to Do With the Price of Blue M&Ms?

So on Friday night, I found myself in a tiny grade school multi-purpose room in Roy, Utah. One of my youngest brothers, Micah, was the star of his school play, a fun, colorful production they named A Seussical. The Grinch, the Cat in the Hat, the Whos, and many others all shared the stage, singing rhyming songs and reciting well-known Seuss lines. A person's a person no matter how small...I meant what I said, I said what I meant. An elephant is faithful one hundred percent...My brother played Horton, and had many solos and much stage direction. He did wonderfully! So proud of him! He's the kind of kid that quiet, but extremely talented. There's a clip below, though it's a bit hard to see.



So what's this got to do with blue candy? My dad was filming the production on his ipad, so he was in the very back by the window. I sat beside him, and a woman in the row in front of us got her kicks some candy from concessions.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Pitch Green Blog Tour--Guest Post and Review

Hello All! Today I'm happy to host fellow JFP authors, The Brothers Washburn, who are promoting their fantastic new YA horror novel, Pitch Green. I've recently read this in preparation for the tour and LOVED it!



Trona is a small, smoggy,  insignificant town in Colorado. Besides a booming chemical plant, the only thing that characterizes this dismal town is dirt, sagebrush, and an enormous abandoned mansion.
Seven years ago, as Camm herded a pack of trick-or-treaters past the mansion, her young neighbor Hugh disappeared, becoming just one of many children who have vanished  from Trona over the years . Now a senior in high school, Camm is still haunted by the tragedy and is sure the answer to the mysterious disappearances lies hidden in the decaying mansion. Joining forces with her best friend, Cal, who also happens to be Hugh’s older brother, Camm naively begins a perilous search for the truth.
As things spiral out of control, and others die, Camm and Cal discover it will take all their combined ingenuity to stay alive. An unseen creature, lurking deep within the bowels of the mansion, seems to have supernatural powers and is now hunting them. Unless they can make sense out of the few pieces of the puzzle they manage to unearth, the monster will certainly destroy them, and like so many others before them, they will be gone without a trace.

Review

I received a copy of Pitch Green through my publisher, Jolly Fish Press for review. I read it in preparation for the tour, but I confess, I didn't really know what it was about. Because of that, I picked it up with no expectations whatsoever. What I found was a delightful, well-written, YA horror story. I breezed through this novel with no trouble at all, and always excited to read more.

Camm is a typical teenage girl, dreaming of life at a big Unversity to, in part, escape her small town. Children have been disappearing inexplicably for years, including the younger brother of her best friend and boyfriend, Cal. When things get interesting and mysterious, Camm takes it on herself to investigate what never seems to have been investigated. What she finds is a twenty-year-old secret, separably entwined with her small town's history.

Both Camm and Cal are great characters. They come across as real kids--and real smart ones--with real problems. They made me smile and root for them constantly. The mystery was well-written, making me turn pages, and the pacing was perfect.

The book would be a bit scary for younger readers--even I shivered a few times--but it's not at all explicit. PG-13 rating in my book.  I never read much YA horror in my day, so I can't say for sure that it's comparable to something like Fear Street, but it seems to me this would be a good comparison. Overall, I found it to be delightful and would recommend it to anyone who wants a fun, creepy read!  Hats off to the Brothers Washburn! I look forward to their next novel with great eagerness. 

Smoldering Inspiration

By The Brothers Washburn

            Berk and I have been asked several times to say what inspired us to write Pitch Green, our scary young adult novel about two teenagers hunted by a fearsome creature that lives in an immense and bizarre mansion that is located in their desolate, desert town.  This is a hard question.  I sometimes feel that the most inspiring thing I come across anymore is a plate of warm chocolate chip cookies, accompanied by a tall glass of cold milk.
            Not the stuff of novels, scary or otherwise.  We have reached this point in our lives where we have seen and done, well, not “it all”; but all of it that we have wanted to see and do.  It is not so much that we are beyond inspiration, but that inspiration has moved on to influence younger, better-looking people than us.
            Perhaps that is the secret of Pitch Green.  It takes place in the deep desert in the real-life mining town of Trona, California.  This is the town of our youth, where we grew up, on the doorstep of Death Valley.  The novel is based on a scary late-night story that has been a part of our lives since we were children.  It is a story we told on scout outings.  We told it to our friends, girlfriends, cousins and even to a few people we didn’t like.  We told it around campfires, on road trips and even in a school class.  This was a story we loved.  And, we loved to use it to scare the crap out of each other.
The Brothers Washburn
            So, while inspiration may evade us now in our white-hair days; we were able reach back, (way freaking back) to those days of yore, (I think it is federal law that says you are not allowed to have “days of yore” until you reach at least 50 years of age) when inspiration was an everyday event--back when inspiration came in a box of cereal, when inspiration was always just around the corner.  It was in the last book I read, in the latest episode of Star Trek or Lost in Space, or in the simple smile of the pretty girl next door.  Oh, to be so inspired again.
            But, I wax sickenly philosophic.  Sorry.  I guess we really were inspired to write this book; but it just so happens that the inspiration came to us a very long time ago--over forty years ago.  It has been sitting, smoldering inside us, waiting to burst into flame when we were all done growing up (if that’s possible), when we could look back and see more clearly.  Some things do get better with age.  In a way, that is kind of inspiring in and of itself.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Anna Karenina Movie Review + Thoughts for Thursday--History

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I've been wanting to see Anna Karenina since it first came out, but either it never came to the Northern Utah movie theaters, or it was just here and gone, which is code for I missed it. I was a little unsure, because while I'm glad I persevered and got through the novel, it wasn't my favorite story ever and I really didn't like Anna as a character. Still, I was curious to see how a film maker would handle the material. When it turned out to have an R-rating, I became suspicious again. Granted, the book is about a married woman who has an affair, so some sexual content is to be expected, but I was afraid maybe this was one of those movies where they made the plot an excuse to create cheap porn.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Name of the Star Book Review

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I've been wanting to read The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson for quite awhile, so when I went to the library with my sister and two-year-old niece, I was pleasantly surprised to find it on the shelf.

The thing is, the story is quite different than what I'd expected. I guess I just always either assumed or read the synopsis wrong, but I thought this was a period piece set in the Ripper's time period. "Perfect for my LKHill blog!" I thought. "It's both historical and crime!" I was wrong. It's actually a contemporary novel--more like a Ripper copycat sort of scenario. Plus, there's a paranormal element to it, which is why I probably should have reviewed it on Musings on Fantasia instead. So, let's call this a cross-over genre.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday--Shelf Sitters + RMQ

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because they are particularly fond of lists at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week they will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.


Top Ten Books I HAD To Buy...But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf (or my Kindle?) Unread

Many of these were on my spring TBR list, but that's because I'm trying to get through lots of books I've had for a long time but haven't gotten around to. Mostly just due to time constraints and other books taking priority. (All covers courtesy of Goodreads.com)




So what are your top ten shelf-sitters?


Random Movie Quotes (RMQ)


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Last time's RMQ was: "The man that passes the sentence should swing the sword." It was said by Sean Bean, playing Eddard Stark in Game of Thrones. This one was guessed by Beth at YA Vixens and the girls at Literary, etc. I don't have you guys down on the RMQ pages yet, as I'm a bit behind, but I'll get you up there soon. Great job!




Today's RMQ is:


"It wasn't lies, Jenny. It was acting."

One point for film, one for actor, on for character. Any guesses?

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You! + Announcements

Oh so many orders of business today!

First off: Thankyou Thankyou thankyou thankyou thankyou thankyou thankyou...a million times thank you to all those who participated in my Persistence of Vision blog tour. It's officially over! There may be a few later reviews and posts that we couldn't fit into the official tour, and I'll post them as they come, but the tour, for all intents and purposes, ended last week. The book is doing relatively well for a debut novel, and I know it's because so many supportive, enthusiastic bloggers were willing to feature me. So, thank you so much! I really appreciate it. More than I can say. Thank you. Thank you. Okay, one more time and I'll stop. THANK YOU!!!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Favorite Outdoor Reading Spots--Follow Friday


TODAY IS MY FINAL BLOG TOUR STOP!!! IT'S A GUEST POST AT  A Universe in Words! Hop on over and check it out. Last chance for this blog tour. Just sayin'. :D


Follow Friday--Favorite Outdoor Reading Spots


Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs! 

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the po.st that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you! 

And tonight's #FF is an activity! Activity! Hopefully warm weather for most of us is here soon…so tell us about your favorite outdoor reading spot. Or take a picture.

I don't know that I have a particular outdoor reading spot. I do love to read outdoors, but just about any comfortable spot will do. I just need some shade, a comfortable place to sit, and lemonade and sunshine never go amiss. ;D

How about you? What's your favorite outdoor reading spot?

Thoughts for Thursday--Shakespeare + Blog Tour Stop

Today's Blog Tour Stops include:

1) Interview at the Fiction Conniption and

2) Guest post at Read. Breathe. Read.



Thoughts for Thursday

Thoughts for Thursday is a new meme hosted by Musings on Fantasia and LKHill.  In this meme, we share thoughts or quotes that we know or have recently come across. Each week there is a specific subject or theme. These can be quotes from books, quotes by famous people, (quotes by YOU, perhaps ;D). Anything from anywhere is game, though we do ask that you keep your quote to a few sentences at most. Don't quote, for example, entire passages of a book or essay. These can be funny quips, cool sayings, hair-raising antidotes, movie lines, any kind of quote you can think of!

Just have fun, collect awesome sayings by awesome people, and try to be inspired!

This week's theme is quotes by my buddy, Shakespeare!


Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.

Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.

It is not in the stars to hold our destiny our destiny but in ourselves.

Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven.

Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once.
What's your favorite quote by Shakespeare? You're favorite play?

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Housekeeper's Son Book Review + Blog Tour Stop

Today's Blog Tour Stop is a guest post at Lehua Parker. 


The Housekeeper's Son Book Review

goodreads.com
Goodreads Blurb:
When 72-year-old housekeeper, Eleanor Ethel Rose, is found with a bloody knife in her hand beside the dead body of Katherine Cunningham, her employer's 12-year-old daughter, she quickly admits to the crime and surrenders herself, pleading guilty before her trial even begins. But to Victor Lee, a young and ambitious journalist who is assigned to cover the story, there is more to Eleanor's confession. Through his interviews with Eleanor within the confines of the penitentiary's visiting hall, Victor pushes for the truth and finds himself drawn into her world where the line between right and wrong is blur-nothing is what it seems. What he discovers is a secret that, if revealed, will not only explain Katherine's death, it will also challenge the moral obligation of every mother to her child. It is a secret that started 42 years ago on the night Eleanor took the life of her only son. The Housekeeper's Son is a novel that explores the power and vulnerability of a mother's love for her child.
The Housekeeper's Son by Chris Loke was written by my fellow Jolly Fish Press author and indeed, the CEO of the publishing company himself. Because of that, and due to the fact that I found the synopsis intriguing, I really wanted to like this book. Unfortunately, it just wasn't for me.

Don't get me wrong, it had some excellent aspects. Loke is a talented writer with an elegant writing style. The story was set up in a clever way that leaves the reader constantly wanting to find out what really happened both in Eleanor's past and in the more present mystery. It was that which kept me reading and helped me finish the book. The characters were very literary, and anyone who is a fan of this type of fiction will probably enjoy them. I found Eleanor to be both compelling and intriguing.

However, there were other aspects of the book that turned me off to it. It's chalk-full of brazen bipartisan politics, thinly veiled if at all. Because my political views differ from Loke's, I didn't appreciate their presence in the story. I also wasn't a fan of the way the small, LDS community was painted. I recently had a fellow blogger tell me she didn't like Beautiful Creatures because it painted all southerners in a negative, backward, superstitious light. It's a cliche, one that perpetuates negative stereotypes. While I really enjoyed Beautiful Creatures (my review HERE), I completely understood that point of view. That's how I felt about The Housekeeper's Son. While every socio-economic or religious group has its bad apples, I didn't particularly appreciate the negative way this small community was portrayed. It left me with a bad taste in my mouth.

I also thought the pace was a bit slow. There were two kinds of chapters in the book. Most were written in third person, which I usually prefer and write in myself. Any part written from the POV of the journalist interviewing Eleanor, however, was written in first person. Loke's first person was far more compelling than his third person, and much easier to read. I found myself wishing the entire book was written that way.

Overall, I appreciated the story and the characters and found their motivations intriguing. Anyone interested in literary fiction, twisted families, and intriguing mysteries might enjoy this novel. :D As I said, it simply wasn't for me.

Has anyone else read The Housekeeper's Son? What did you think of it?

Monday, March 11, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday--Spring TBR List

**Before I get to Top Ten Tuesday, I just wanted to share something. A blogger contacted me yesterday asking me for links to where readers can buy my book, Persistence of Vision. I went to the Amazon page and look what I found!!!



You may not be able to see this well, but written in green are the words, "Only 10 left in stock. More on the way." I don't know how many were originally ordered--maybe it was only a dozen. No idea--but I think it's safe to say my books are selling. Woot, WOOT! *does creepy author dance*


Top Ten Tuesday


Historical Tidbit--Viking Names + Blog Tour Stop

Today's blog tour stop is an Interview at These Flying Pages. Hop on over and check it out!

Historical Tidbit

Did you know...


That names with double consonants that sound like two words (i.e. Johansson) have a Viking origin? In the early middle ages, people didn't have surnames. Last  names developed first as titles given to describe people because even them, many first names were common and it became hard to differentiate people.

So people gained descriptive titles based on their deeds (William the Conqueror), physical attributes (Pepin the Short, who incidentally married Agatha the Bigfoot) or unfortunate circumstances (Ethelred the Unready). 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Today's Blog Tour Stops

Today's Blog Tour Stops:

1) Review at The Book Asylum 
2) Review at The Sisters' Tale

Hop on over to check out these awesome bloggers' reviews! Also, check out my answers to week 2 of The Great Hunt Read Along
 on my other blog, Musings on Fantasia! Have a great day!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Follow Friday + Blog Tour Stops


Today's blog tour stops include:
1) A Review & Interview at The Soul Sisters and
2) A Review at Pause Time



Follow Friday



Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs! 

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the po.st that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you! 



Q: What is a book you didn't like that all your friends raved about or what book did you love that wasn't popular?


The only answer I can think of will probably used a lot this week: Fifty Shades of Gray. It wasn't even that a lot of my friends read it, but lots of co-workers and acquaintances, and almost every one without fail said they liked it. I just don't get it!

How about you? What book didn't you like that was popular?

Big in Japan Book Review + Blog Tour Stops

Today's Blog Tour stops Include:
1) Review at On Starships and Dragonwings
2) Post at Pause Time

Big In Japan Review

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Originally I decided to read this because it was written by my friend and fellow Jolly Fish Press author, Jennifer Stewart Griffith. I try to read and endorse books by authors I know. What surprised me was how much I enjoyed this book. It was just delightful!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Dissension and Game of Thrones Trailers + Blog Tour Stops

Today's Blog Tour Stops include:

1) Guest Post at Late Nights With Good Books 

2) Guest post at Literary Rambles



Two Fun Trailers I Think EVERYONE Should Watch. ;D

Today I thought I'd feature a couple of fun video clips.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday--Series, RMQ + Blog Tour Stops

Today's blog tour stop is a Guest Post at Bookingly Yours.


Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because they are particularly fond of lists at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week they will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

Top Ten Series I'd Like To Start But Haven't Yet

So many series, so little time. I'm sure this list could go on and one, but that's why they call it Top Ten, right? All covers courtesy of Goodreads.com.

500-Follower Give Away!!!

Today's blog tour stop is an Interview over at Dab of Darkness. See what you think!

Okay, so I've probably had 500 followers for awhile, now. Actually, on this blog, I have just under 500 all together, but I'm very close. On my other blog, Musings on Fantasia, I have closer to 550, so I figured it was high time for a giveaway.

Unfortunately, as much a I love my international readers, I can't afford to ship to you anymore. I recently shipped a book to the Philippines and it cost me nearly three times what I paid for the book itself. So, I'm doing two different giveaways. One is for a signed print copy of Persistence of Vision, but only U.S. Residents can enter.  The second is for three e-book copies of Persistence of Vision, and this giveaway is open to anyone with an email address.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Today's Blog Tour Stops

Today's blog tour stops include:

1) A Spotlight and Guest Post at Lost in Literature...

2) A Spotlight at Bookingly Yours


Have a great rest of the weekend! :D

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Saturday Humor

Happy Saturday, Everyone! Just a quick note and some humor for the weekend. I'm still playing catch-up from being out of town for a week, so I'm going to try and get my head above water this weekend. I'll also be babysitting my nephew, Stratton (so cute!) for awhile, and maybe seeing a movie with my sister. There might be a movie review on the blog next week. Just sayin.' :D Everyone have a great weekend. Check out the funny pictures below. Hope they give you a laugh.

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(WISH THIS WAS ME THIS WEEKEND!!!)
So what are your weekend plans?