Why I Love Pokemon By Scout, Age 10

*Scout’s Mommy here.  This is Scout’s first blog post written completely by her with no assistance from her Mommy.  Any positive feedback she receives will be greatly appreciated!

Scout has arrived in the Calos Region!

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Pokemon is a great card game, but is great to collect too. I used to play it, but now I just collect and trade them with my best friend.  Also,the Pokemon show  is pretty good.  I’m not a huge anime fan, but for some reason I love this show!

I started liking pokemon because no girls were playing it.  So, I wanted to inspire other girls to like it too, even though boys thought that it was only their thing.

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I got the leggings from Living Dead Clothing. I got the character dress, Pikachu skirt, backpack and necklace from Hot Topic.  Avengers/Pokemon t-shirt from Red Bubble.  Click on the links to buy your own.

That is why I love Pokemon!

Until next time!

Love, Kim and Scout

Her Universe Fitness Wear

My last post was about my fitness journey, so I thought I would test some of the latest fitness wear from Her Universe so you can get some of this gear and get started on your own fitness journey.

The collection is available in both standard and plus sizes.  All the same pieces, not a limited number of pieces for plus sizes, which is usually the case for us plus size ladies.  I love how Her Universe includes geeks of all sizes.  They always have.  One downside is that the plus sizes are only available online, but you can’t get everything you want!

OK, so I desperately needed some new workout wear, so the minute this collection hit the web, being the Marvel girl I am, I pounced.  I’m happy to report that the quality is outstanding, the past sizing problems that Her Universe has had (uneven sizing and everything tended to run small), has been corrected and the price point just can’t be beat!

Alrighty then!  Here are some pics of what I got.  The first is a Cap outfit:

I’m a size 18/20 for reference.  I bought everything in a 2X.  Everything was true to size and actually, even a little big (thanks, Nerdstrong Gym!)  A couple of nitpicks about the collection that I do have is that none of the leggings I purchased passed the bend-over test, so nude undies will be required.  The sportsbras also aren’t super supportive.  They are super cute, so I layered with a supportive sportsbra, but that might be too many layers for you.  The tank tops are all longish, which is fantastic (helps with those see-thru issues).  The fabrics are all super-soft and the spandex is super stretchy.  All in all, I am very happy with the outfits I got.  Here are some more pics of the outfits I got and some close up of the details on the clothes.

Pick up your own gear here.

Happy shopping!

Love, Kim and Scout

*Lead photo: Kohl’s

My Fitness Journey

One of the most important journeys anyone can undertake is the fitness journey.  It is a journey without end, and a journey that has an effect on all the parts of your life.  It can be a journey with many twists and turns, stops and starts, and more than a few bumps along the way.  I thought I would share mine with you.

I’ve always been a big girl.  I was a pretty skinny kid, but family history, genetics and not learning how to eat healthier contributed to my size as I struck out on my own.  However, I’ve always been active.  You probably wouldn’t guess it by looking at me, but there it is.  I started working out way back in junior high school when a new gym opened in my neighborhood.  I would hop on my mo-ped and go work through the Nautilus machines (do they still have those?)  I have always loved to dance, so hitting the clubs was a great exercise for me as well.  I would take aerobics, yoga, fitness dance classes, had work-out videos that I actually put to good use and not as a coaster.  So, working out has never been my problem.

Eating healthy has always been an issue for me.  My thoughts used to be, “Just eat less”.  Well, not necessarily.  Because I can be strict and eat hardly any calories in a day.  I’m tough that way, but it doesn’t always result in weight loss or loss of inches.  Stress eating can also be a problem with me.  I’m a picky eater, so add that into the mix and it makes healthy eating a problem.  I joined all the diet programs at some point in time.  I followed them with religious fervor.  I would see success and then the results would stop.  Just stop.  I went to the doctor and told him all the things I just told you.  He would refer me to a nutritionist.  Same thing, results for a while and then nothing.  So, I can eat less and follow diet rules, but why wasn’t I seeing results?

I will give myself this, I never stopped trying.  Over the last two years, a couple things happened.  One, I looked in the mirror one day and said, “OK, this is what I am going to look like as an adult human.”  Then I said, “And I’m super OK with it as long as I’m healthy enough to be an old lady and drive my kid crazy.”  Then a friend told me about NerdStrong Gym (then known as Nrdfit).

I went into NerdStrong with the usual goals, “Lose Weight”. That is what I was always taught.  It is about being thin.  Thin is better.  Thin is beautiful.  Thin is healthy.  Right?  Well, not necessarily.  I learned that increasing my strength and mobility are the keys to health.  If you get better at those two things, then the fat will burn and the muscles will build.  The weight, well, it might change and it might stay about the same; but your body, your engine, will run better and you will achieve the real success, which is health.  When you are searching for a gym to call your own, please take into account the coaching you receive.  I’m super lucky to have coaches that are still on their own fitness journeys and encourage and push when needed, but always with safety as a first priority.  You might have to look for a while to find a good fit for you, but keep looking.

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Photo: Nerdstrong Gym

Here are some photos of my progress over the last couple of years:

The other thing I learned at NerdStrong is to go to FitFax, or a program like it, to get a real picture of your overall health.  FitFax combines solid nutritional advice to compliment your workouts.  Their advice to me as to cut sugar way down and build protein up.  Just taking my sugar down to under 40 g a day made me feel so much better, I burned fat and built muscle.  My weight stayed about the same, but I took up way less space.  Now, that was the advice I got for my body and my body alone from professionals, coaches, nutritionists and doctors, so don’t you go doing this without checking with a doctor first!   What’s good for me may not be good for your body.  Got it?  OK. 

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Photo: fit-fax.com

One bonus benefit from NerdStrong Gym is the community spirit of the place.  There are game nights at the gym, RPGs at the gym, there is a facebook group that plans outings together to museums, hiking, theme parks, etc.  That added benefit helps keep me on track as well.  My fellow nerds help me along the way as we workout and reach new goals in our fitness journeys. They are there with a high-five when you accomplish something major and a hand-up when you are struggling.

All of these positive results had an effect on the rest of my life.  I began to look in the mirror and like what I saw.  Not because I was a size smaller, but because I was taking an active role in my health.  I am the boss of me as it turns out!  I also started really challenging myself by taking and posting selfies on days when I felt particularly awesome.  I don’t allow negative talk in front of the mirror anymore.

You can also get your friends and family in on your journey.  Let them know your goal is to feel better physically and mentally.  Not that you want to lose weight or fit a certain jeans size.  Ask them to provide positive feedback to ease you along those bumps in the road.  Also, feel free to comment to us here at RAHNOV, so we can applaud your progress as well.  We love selfies!

Your own journey should start with a visit to your doctor no matter what you decide to do as a first step to better health.  Keep us posted on your progress!

Happy and safe travels!

Love, Kim and Scout

 

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Part Two

Part Two of our adventure to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will be all about the wands choosing the witches and our cosplay.  For Part One, click here.

To get your wand, you have to go to Olivander’s, makers of fine wands since 382 BC, which is a long time according to our Wand Master.  You wait in a cue to get into Olivander’s for the ceremony in which one lucky witch or wizard gets to have their wand choose them.  Scout was the chosen lucky witch this time!

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Waiting to go into see the Wand Master.

There are wands literally floor to ceiling:

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Scout was chosen to have her wand found by the Wand Master.  She was measured and then after a couple of “No, that is not your wand, Dear.” moments, the magick happened:

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This, I believe, is your wand my Dear!  Then it was my turn to go into the shop and choose my wand.  I chose a Reed wand and Scout’s is an Ash wand.  There are 12 different kinds of wands, each with different characteristics so you can find a good fit.  You can also buy replica wands for pretty much any character you can think of in the Potterverse.

Our wands and the interactive map.

Each wand comes with an interactive map (some replica wands are not interactive, so ask your wand master when you get there).  The map is a guide to the shop windows in Hogsmeade.  You stand on a gold platform and perform the spell with your wand to make something happen in the shop window.  The wands are an excellent replacement of our cheapy wands that we had been using in our Hufflepuff student cosplays.  Which leads us to our cosplay.

We wore only the uniform dress from Hot Topic to the park because it was an unusually warm day, but for cons, we go all out.  Here are some pics of our cosplay full-on.  Shopping guides below.  Scout is wearing a small in the dress and I’m wearing a 2X.  I am a size 18/20 for reference.  As usual, if you like the cosplay photos, please check out Justin Davidson Photography’s webpage to book him here.

Hogwarts uniform dress from Hot Topic

Robes from Universal Store

We had an amazing time at Hogsmeade/Hogwarts!  Check it out if you are in the LA area! Until next time…Accio, Happiness!

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Love, Kim and Scout

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Part One

Finally, FINALLY, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter soft opened at Universal Studios Hollywood!  As soon as I could, I bought our annual passes and Scout and I were off to see the Wizard, ahem, Hogwarts.

I took so many pictures, that I will have to split this post into two parts.  Let’s just say, Scout and I had one of our best days ever!

The Wizarding World is on soft open for now, and will grand open on April 7th.  Get your tickets here.

First off, the traditional “going on an adventure” selfie:

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Me, the Kid and Breezy the Owl are on our way!

We got into the park and made straight for Hogsmeade, but got stopped along the way:

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The Mummy kept touching my neck with his creepy, and cold hand… shudder!

Once we arrived, we were completely mesmerized by how beautiful it was.  You quite literally step into Harry’s world.

Our friend, Anne, joined us for some of the fun and we went for the Hogwarts’ Express photo op:

Hogwarts Express

I have some more pictures to share with you of our first of many trips to Hogwarts!

Entrance to Hogsmeade and enjoying a frozen butterbeer:

The Owlery where we enjoyed our Butterbeer (best thing ever!) and the Frog Choir performed:

We ran into this amazing Slytherin poodle skirt cosplay at Olivander’s, Sirius Black is on the loose! and Scout in front of Hogwarts Castle.  Amazing!

Next time, the wands choose the witches and the low-down on our cosplay…

Love, Kim and Scout

WonderCon 2016 Program Guide is Up!

So many great programs.  Take a look at the complete schedule here.

Here are some highlights that Scout and I are looking forward to:

Her Universe Fashion Show Update
For the last two years, Her Universe and Hot Topic have produced The Her Universe “Geek Couture” Fashion Show at San Diego Comic-Con. Each year two winners were chosen and given the unique professional opportunity to design a fashion collection to be sold in Hot Topic stores. Her Universe founder Ashley Eckstein, Cat Carson(SVP of Her Universe), Ed Labay (VP, merchandising), and Andrea Lewis (director, brand marketing) from Hot Topic and 2015 fashion show winners Kelly CerconeandLeetal Platt take you behind the scenes of the making of their all-newStar Wars: The Force Awakens line for Hot Topic. Learn how these designers went from runway to retail! Plus, get an exclusive sneak peek at this new Star Wars collection and hear details about how to submit your designs for the 2016 Her Universe Fashion Show at San Diego Comic-Con!

Friday March 25, 2016 2:00pm – 3:00pm
Room 502B
Cosplay Make-up 101
This panel covers what it takes to perfect your cosplay by having great makeup to go with it. It will cover beauty makeup, appliance application, special fx makeup, sculpting, molding, casting, and wig styling. The panelists include Dawnielle Banks(Makeup By Siryn, Batgirl Spoiled lead makeup designer), Ashley Troub (Ghost Hunters, winning look SDCC Her Universe Fashion Show), Kelton Ching (SDCC 2014 Apocalypse makeup demo, Blizzcon 2015 4th place winner), and Chrissy Lynn (Super Power Beat Down’s Darth Maul, League of Steam’s White Wolf), who have honed their craft in the makeup, film, television, and cosplay photography worlds. They will answer your questions about makeup to match your costuming and cosplay, as well as offer tips and tools of the trade to use. Moderated by cosplayer Mac Beauvais(Monstrous Makeup Manuals 1&2 model, actress in The Gloaming).

Friday March 25, 2016 3:00pm – 4:00pm
Room 502B

 

Comic Book Law School

With an ever-growing appetite for new content and rapid-fire advancements in technology, it has never been easier for a creator to get their work in front of an audience (and hopefully in a profitable way). But as traditional barriers to entry tumble, the exponential growth of alternatives (such as digital publishing, social media content distribution models, crowdfunding, and print-on-demand services) also result in an increasing assortment of traps, cons and hazards to navigate. And while it’s true that with great (technological) power comes greater reward, it’s the creators who must be responsible for protecting themselves and their creations from the unscrupulous and the deceitful who are gaining an ever-expanding bag of tools for fleecing the unwary. But luckily, creators have their own Defenders they can turn to-and not just Jessica Jones and Matt Murdock. WonderCon welcomes back noted IP attorney Michael Lovitz, author of The Trademark and Copyright Book comic book, to discuss the truths (and debunk some urban legends) of protecting your creative capital. Attendees are invited to participate in an interactive discussion led by Lovitz, concerning the basic rights provided under the U.S. Copyright and Trademark laws; including the basics on the ownership and protection of ideas, a brief overview of copyright & trademark rights and their application to works of authorship, characters, and names. Along the way, there will be plenty to learn about the protections, and pitfalls, of the U.S. intellectual property systems. (Please note: The Comic Book Law School seminars are designed to provide relevant information and practice tips to practicing attorneys, as well as practical tips to creators and other professionals who may wish to attend. However, the seminar is presented for information and entertainment purposes only, and the information presented and opinions expressed at the seminars do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. This program is approved for one credit of California MCLE).


Friday March 25, 2016 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Room 411

 

Geek Wars: Star Wars Edition
Fans love to geek out, but they also like engaging in important culture topics. In thisStar Wars edition of Geek Wars, professional nerds battle it out over Star Wars trivia while also discussing relevant social topics like stereotyping, feminism, body shaming, and much more. Plus, the panel will speculate about Episode VIII! This will be a lively and enlightening conversation that might challenge your view on the pop culture world. Panelists include Chris Gore (comedian, personality), Amy Ratcliffe(writer), Ivy Doom Kitty (professional cosplayer), and Jennifer Landa (YouTube personality). Hosted by Tony B Kim (host, blogger).

Saturday March 26, 2016 1:00pm – 2:00pm
Room 502B

 

I’m In the Nerd Business
How do you create and sustain a business that caters to the geek lifestyle without exploiting the very people to whom you provide services? Join this panel of entrepreneurs, whose traditional businesses cater to a predominantly nerdy or geeky clientele. Panelists Matthew Arevalo (Loot Crate), Donna Ricci (Geeky Teas, formerly Clockwork Couture), Janelle Badali (Badali Jewelry), and David Nett(Nerdstrong Gym) discuss how these businesses started, and how they sustain their service to their clientele in the face of mass-market exploitation of geekdom. How do you compete with the giant corporate conglomerates that have suddenly discovered the geek marketplace? How do you sell goods and market services to a community seeking authenticity, without falling into the trap of pandering or gimmicks? Moderated by Brian Ward (The Arkham Sessions, Shout! Factory).

Saturday March 26, 2016 3:00pm – 4:00pm
Room 502B

 

Marvel Goes Steampunk
Crossing over into every genre, Steampunk has transformed many Marvel characters into some of the steamiest superheroes and villains in the galaxy. Enjoy a walk on the wild side with everyone from Ant-Man and Deadpool to Spider-Man and Doctor Strange as they are reimagined in the Steampunk style! Panelists include Dina Kampmeyer (Lady Steam), Crystal Rose Schaefer (cosplayer), Mac Beauvais(Strange Like That Cosplay), Anastasia Hunter (chair of Gaslight Gathering), andOakley Boren (cosplayer).

Saturday March 26, 2016 6:00pm – 7:00pm
Room 502B

 

Jet Set Nerds
Jet Set Nerd Anastasia Washington (Anastationtv, Jet Set Nerds) and jet settersStephanie Pressman (Fashionably Nerdy), Angelique Toschi (Nerds in La La Land),Stacy Renfroe (Nerds in La La Land), Michelle Chubby Bunny (Geek & Sundry), Yume Lee (Lootcrate), Marlon (Nerd Coolture), and Curious Joi (Curious Joi) chat about packing up your bags and finding Nerd Mecca wherever you go! Moderated byJennifer Kretchmer (producer).

Saturday March 26, 2016 8:00pm – 9:00pm
Room 502B

 

Hope to see you all there!

Con collage

Love, Kim and Scout

Dallas Comic Con 2016: Part Two

In addition to a great Con floor, Dallas Comic Con offered up some great cosplay!  Scout and I hit the floor on day one with Star Wars cosplay, Scout as Finn and me as Han.  Our friend, Troy, was ObiWan.  I was so glad we chose to go for a Star Wars day because on the floor was a landspeeder photo op.  For a few bucks, we got to get in the speeder and take some pictures with a Storm Trooper.  Here is just a sampling of the silliness that ensued:

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As you can see, Scout has a lead foot and got us pulled over for speeding.  Can’t wait to teach her how to drive!

Day two, Scout and I were Star Lord and Rocket.  This is the first cosplay that we came up with completely on our own, so we really love to rerun this cosplay.  Troy was Doctor Nemesis.  Rocket prevailed…

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The Con floor had a nice red carpet area to show off your cosplay as well.

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There was one pro booth for cosplay photos.  SuperHeroPhotos.com.  Click on the link for more info.  Here are the pics that we had done:

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I love how these turned out!  If Super Hero Photos has a booth at your local Con, get some pics done!

As you can see, we had a fantastic time at this Con.  This might need to become a regular thing with us.  Next up, WonderCon!

Love, Kim and Scout