Cross-stitch and What is it?

Hey guys! Remember that Needles & a Movie is still a thing! The next meeting is July 24th at 3 P.M. Don’t want to knit or crochet? Try Cross-stitch! It’s a great way to create pieces (as big or small as you like) for yourself, friends, or family.

How do you get started? I’ll be blunt with you, I have never done cross stitch in my life. So this blog post will be an adventure for both of us!

Simply put, cross stitch is a stitch that crosses, specifically in an X shape (hence the cross in cross-stitch).

Less simply put “It starts with a simple X shaped stitch that is commonly embroidered with floss on an evenweave fabric.  The cross stitch is repeated numerous times to create a design.  Counted cross stitch designs are made by following a grid or chart where each square that contains a symbol represents 1 stitch.” (DMC-USA)

Cross stitch vulpix pokemon cross stitch tumblr

With Cross-stitch, you can create anything like pokemoncross-stitch.tumblr’s adorable Vulpix!

DMC-USA has lots of information for beginning cross-stitchers! I’ve looked at several different cross stitching sites and they seem to be the best organized.

Some video tutorials:

  • Preparation! This will go over the materials you need and how to get started.
  • Stitching! This goes over how to actually begin the actual cross stitching stitch.

Patterns:

If you’d like to make your own pattern from a file on your computer, click here. Just upload the picture you want, and the website does the rest of the work! It’s one of my favorite pattern websites (I like to use it for perler bead designs specifically since I do not cross stitch) because not only does it convert the image into a pattern but gives you several variations of how many colors you want in said pattern. It can be as simple or complex as you desire!

There is also this site, but it gives you less options. Make sure you leave it selected at the 1:1 ratio for cross-stitch.

And don’t forget! The library has plenty of books on cross-stitch on the third floor. Check one out today!

If anyone has advice they’d like to share for beginner cross-stitchers, comment below!
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Ashe

Superhero VS. Villain Showdown – Week 3

The second round of voting in the Superhero VS. Villain Showdown is complete. Teens can vote for their favorite heroes and villains in a bracket-style tournament. Week 3 voting will run Monday, June 29 – Sunday, July 5.  Votes will be entered into a drawing to win a $25 Regal 12 movie theater gift card! One vote per person, per week.

Thor and Captain America are the remaining Avengers, knocking out Iron Man and Spiderman while the Wolverine took on the Incredible Hulk and came out on top! Poor Magneto didn’t stand a chance against Loki’s trickery.

Here are the match-ups for Round 3.

Superheroes

Thor vs. Captain America
Wolverine vs. The Flash


Villains
Green Goblin vs. Doomsday
Ultron vs. Loki
Who will remain as victor? Cast your votes online or in the Vortex!
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Ashe

Anime Recommendation of the Month: The Devil is a Part-Timer

This month’s recommendation is the anime The Devil is a Part-Timer.

devil is a part timerGenre: Comedy / Fantasy

Number of episodes: 13

Rating: TV-14

Language: English & Japanese with English Subs

Brief Synopsis: “Inches away from conquering the world, the devil is foiled by a hero and finds himself in modern-day Tokyo. With no real-world skills to speak of, the devil is forced to make ends meet flipping burgers at a fast food joint!” (Hulu.com)

Spoiler-free Commentary:

I first discovered this anime during Anime Central in 2014 while wandering around the vendor’s hall. At Funimation’s, they had a ginormous promotional poster advertising the anime. I knew nothing about it, but from just the title, I wanted to see it: The Devil is a Part Timer. The whole premise of satan being a fast food worker is hilarious. I began to imagine what it could possibly be about. Did he love it? Did he hate it? How did the devil get himself into such a situation? Maybe it was on purpose! Perhaps it was a social commentary on how fast food CEOs are the devil themselves (though then again, CEOs are not part-timers…there went that theory)!

About a year later, as I browsed aimlessly on Netflix, imagine my delight when I saw they had picked up the title! With nothing to lose but time, I started up the show to see if it would be as good as I hoped. It was! My only major complaint is I wish there was more. I’m a person who is an absolute sucker for character development and interaction. Thirteen episodes isn’t nearly enough time with the characters. I NEED MORE. Will there be a second season? Unfortunately, probably not.

However, which of my 2014 Anime Central musings came true and which were wild fantasies that never came to fruition in the show? Not telling! When I say spoiler-free, I mean it! Watch it yourself!

If you have Netflix, you can watch it there, but it is also available for free on Hulu.com! I watched it subbed, because the dub has a very strange glitch on netflix. Occasionally the show switches into a made-up language (which is fine) but if you leave the subtitles off, you have no idea what they’re saying when they switch into said fake language. So, long story short: watch the sub. You’ll save yourself some confusion.

Hulu

Netflix

When you finish the show and you’re itching for more and just can’t stand it? GUESS WHAT. There’s a manga that is being released! AND GUESS WHAT ELSE!!!! The library has it! Check it out today!
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Ashe

Superhero VS. Villain Showdown – Week 2

The first round of voting in the Superhero VS. Villain Showdown is complete. Teens can vote for their favorite heroes and villains in a bracket-style tournament. Week 2 voting will run Monday, June 22 – Sunday, June 28.  Votes will be entered into a drawing to win a $25 Regal 12 movie theater gift card! One vote per person, per week.

The Avengers dominated the superhero bracket knocking out Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and more.   And in a surprise move, The Joker was eliminated by the Green Goblin.  Here are the match-ups for Round 2.

Superheroes
Iron Man vs. Thor
Spiderman vs. Captain America
Wolverine vs. The Incredible Hulk
Black Widow vs. The Flash

Villains
Lex Luthor vs. The Green Goblin
Bane vs. Doomsday
Ultron vs. Catwoman
Magneto vs. Loki

Remember to vote online or in the Vortex!


Randi

Marvel Heroes 2015: Free to Play

Can’t get enough of Marvel Superhero movies? Sick of waiting for the next one to come out? Already voted this week in our Superheroes Vs Villains Showdown? Guess what! There is a free PC game available called Marvel Heroes 2015.

It is available for download with or without Steam.

What is Steam?

Steam is a video game storefront client available on Windows, Mac and Linux; you buy and download the games through Steam. What’s nice about all this is that the games you purchase for your computer are all in one place! Never purchase a game twice because you can’t remember if you’ve bought it already or not (I’ve been there, it’s not fun)! They will all be there in your game library.

Don’t want to download Steam? That’s okay! Here is a link to download and play the game without steam.

Have or want Steam? Go here instead.

To play Marvel Heroes 2015, download Steam on your home computer. (Sorry to any Linux users out there though, Marvel Heroes is only available on Mac and Windows)

Marvel heroes

Image: Steam

To begin playing, you will have to create an account with Marvel Heroes. You can do so here.

Now for the big question:

Why should you play this?

It’s a great way to immerse yourself in the Marvel Universe. You get to play as a Hero and defeat the bad guys! Hydra and many other Marvel Baddies are still out there and they must be stopped! While they have a very wide variety of who you can play as, in the beginning there are only a few you can choose from. They are:

  • Captain America
  • Black Panther
  • Punisher
  • Black Widow
  • Luke Cage
  • Human Torch
  • Colossus
  • Cyclops
  • Storm
  • Hawkeye
  • Rocket Racoon
  • DareDevil

You can play any of these heroes for free up until level 10.

There are three ways to unlock heroes:

  • Upon reaching level 10, you will get a special key that lets you unlock any hero you so desire (even ones that aren’t on the above this list!).
  • On your second login after 24 hours of your first login, you get a login reward of enough game money, eternity shards (ES), to buy one hero (or maybe even two if you go for the 200 ES heroes).
  • Play the game and as you defeat enemies, they will drop ES. You also sometimes get more ES as login rewards but it will never be as much as your second reward.

For a full list of characters you can choose from to play as click here.

To help you decide who to choose to play as go Marvelbase.com. This site lets you see all the possible abilities each character has.

I’m stuck! I’ve looked at all the abilities and I’m having decision anxiety!! What do??

Well, until after you hit level 10, you can play as any of the starter heroes. Play around with them, see whose abilities you like more. Who’s more fun to defeat baddies with?

What? You want a character that’s not on the starter list?

Even though I can’t make the decision for you, I can give a little advice. Whenever I get stuck on picking someone to play as, I tend to choose the character I have the biggest emotional attachment to. I’m the type of person that even if they have the CRAZIEST MOST OVERPOWERED SUPER DUPER ABILITIES EVARR, if I didn’t like the character, it wouldn’t be very fun. I have to like the character (I chose Winter Soldier for those wondering btw).

So look over that list one more time. Who’s your favorite? What Marvel character can you absolutely not live without? There’s your character. Pick them. When in doubt, let your heart decide.
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Ashe

Superhero vs. Villain Showdown

Who is your favorite superhero or villain? We will pit heroes and villains against each other in a bracket voting tournament to determine the ultimate winner. Voting will start Monday, June 15 and continue on for 5 weeks through July 19 with the winner announced July 20.

Each new weekly bracket will start on Monday with voting going through to the following Sunday. Voting slips will be entered into a drawing to win a $25 Regal 12 movie theater gift card! One vote per person, per week.

The first round of competition has started.  Teens in 6th – 12th grade can vote in the Vortex or online until Sunday, June 21st.

Randi

Book Review: The Darkest Part of the Forest

The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

darkest part of the forestGenre: Fantasy

First Released: Jan 2015

Part of a Series? Nope! Crikey! You have stumbled upon a rare creature in the world of YA Literature known as….The Standalone novel. Approach carefully, she’s a wee bit shy.

Brief Synopsis “Hazel and her brother, Ben, live in Fairfold, where humans and the Folk exist side by side. Tourists drive in to see the lush wonders of Faerie and, most wonderful of all, the horned boy. But visitors fail to see the danger.” (Amazon)

Where can I find it in the library?

This will be on the second floor of the library in the Vortex.

Call Number: YA F BLACK

Commentary:

I LOVE THIS BOOK. It’s engaging, the writing is great, and the book has dynamic characters. It’s nice to see a sibling duo that is not constantly at odds with one another. They fight as most sibling-like manner, but you can tell they don’t really mean it.

My favorite part is that this book focuses on different types of fae you normally don’t get to read about. It’s refreshing! How often is it do you pick up a novel and one of the main characters is a changeling? Answer: NOT VERY.

Darkest Part of the Forest does have some spooky moments but as I had mentioned in my Anna Dressed in Blood review, I’m a chicken. I wasn’t overly distressed, but I did make sure I read with the lights on and not right before bed (which of course I always end up doing anyway. Who needs sleep? SLEEP IS FOR THE WEAK).

So if you want a fantasy novel but you’re sick of witches, angels, zombies, vampires, or whatever else is popular at the moment, give Holly Black’s The Darkest Part of the Forest a try. You won’t regret it.
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Ashe