Mobile Game Recommendation: I Love Hue

I Love Hue is my latest mobile gaming addiction. It is available on Android and iPhone for free!  

The basic premise is you are given a gradient, and then have to put it back in order. Sounds like something that would get boring fast, right? You’d be sorely mistaken!

There are TONS of different gradients to choose from and with a large variety of difficulties. This really helps mix things to keep it interesting. It’s really relaxing too, looking at all those disordered colors and making sense out of it. My favorite gradients to work with are the rainbow ones, they’re just so gorgeous!

The squares with dots in the center are fixed points to give you a guide on how to organize the gradient. Maps have a varying amount of these guide squares to make it easier, or more difficult!

When you beat a level, the game is SUPER encouraging. My favorite is when it calls me an iridescent moonbeam.

Try it out today!


Game Review: CODENAMES have a new favorite board game that I’d like to share with y’all. It’s called CodeNames and it’s a great game for groups of at least 4. (You can totally play with more people, but you’ll be dividing into two teams, so try to keep the number even.)

The concept is pretty simple. According to the game creators, “Two rival spymasters know the secret identities of 25 agents. Their teammates know the agents only by their CODENAMES.”

There’s a deck of cards with various words printed on them. (These are the agents’ codenames.) Each codename will belong to one of the teams OR be an innocent bystander OR be the dreaded Assassin. The spymaster’s job is to let their teammate’s know which agents belong to them. The spymasters will do this by giving their team clues. The clues will correspond to one or more of the cards on the table.

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The photo on the left is the grid of cards and the photo on the right depicts how you know which cards/agents belong to your team. Let’s say you’re the spymaster for the blue team; your agents’ codenames would be: spy (which is a pretty un-creative codename, imho), carrot, thief, mole, water, paper, ninja, police, and pie. You, as the spymaster, give your team a one-word clue each turn along with a number of cards that might correspond to that clue. If I were playing this hand, I’d say “sneaky, 4” because spies, thieves, moles, and ninjas are all sneaky. But be careful to check your opponent’s agents too to make sure your clues don’t apply to one of them! And don’t let your team choose the Assassin (the black square)! This will end the game immediately and your team will LOSE!Image result for codenames duet

It’s a lot of fun to make up and guess the clues, to try to find connections among completely random words, and to see your friends try to follow your logic! I wholeheartedly recommend CodeNames! There are also several variations of the original game! One has pictures instead of words and one is collaborative instead of competitive. This last one is called CodeNames Duet and the Vortex just bought a copy along with about 12 other board games that are free to use in the teen area! Stop on by and give one a try!






Beauty Tips: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Polish

I absolutely promise Sally Hansen hasn’t paid me to write this! I just love this brand so much. I haven’t done my nails for yeaaaaaars because I’m way too impatient waiting for nail polish to dry. That’s not even including adding a clear coat to make sure it lasts a while!

A few months ago though, I was getting married and wanted to at least have pretty nails, even if it did take forever to dry. I found the peeeeeerfect color with Sally Hansen’s Quick Dri (Set-Sail), it was on clearance, and I thought hey, why not. Cheap and it claims to be fast! We’ll see Sally Hansen, we’ll see. <squinty Leonardo Dicaprio face.jpg>

Imagine my surprise that it did, indeed DRY FAST. It dries within like 5-10 minutes and I’m able to do things with my hands without messing it up. It also only took one coat! Even better! And matched my dress! Ahhh! Perfect!


So if you’re like me, you like having your nails painted, but don’t want to dedicate a ton of time waiting for it to dry (I got video games to play, dagnabbit), give Sally Hansen’s Insta-Dri brand a shot. They have a decent amount of colors, and is sold at Meijer and Target. (Those are the stores I’ve encountered it at, at least. May be found at more places!)   

It’ll be perfect Prom coming up later this Spring and even earlier, our Host Cafe on April 14! We’ll have maids and butlers here to entertain you with board and card games while you nosh on some delicious treats. Sign up here!

Need decorating ideas for your quickly dried nails? Check out our collection of books as well, on the third floor!

How to Double Knit

Double knitting felt like magic for me at first. It still kinda is, but it’s magic that I feel pretty confident about now. If you can knit & purl, YOU TOO, can double-knit!

Double knitting is the art of knitting two sides of a piece at once! Say you wanted a super thick coaster, instead of knitting two of them, and sewing them together, you can make both sides at the same time! It’s super neat!

And it doesn’t have to be something as small as a coaster or a pot holder, you can go ginormous and be insane like me and make a double-sided queen-sized blanket (why do I do this to myself? I guess I just like having things to complain about?).

So how do I do it?

All you need is your favorite pair of knitting needles, and 2 skeins of different colored yarn!

The following video explains it really clearly and slowly!

It’s really not as hard as it sounds!

We also have tons of books on the subject as well! Check one out today!

For a Limited Time Only!

Has coloring with markers just become too much of a chore for you? All that hassle of moving your hand back and forth–who has the time for that? If only there were some type of robot to handle this exhausting task for you!

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Well, now there is! Introducing MARKER BOTS!

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Sure, they don’t always color inside the lines… or even always on the paper. And sometimes they vibrate themselves off the table. And drawing anything recognizable like a dog or a house or a straight line is pretty much impossible. But, if you want to make a picture of rainbow spaghetti or maybe a jellyfish, THEN THIS IS THE BOT FOR YOU!

Just remove the marker caps, place 2 AAA batteries (included) into the holder and watch that Marker Bot mark! It’s the markiest Marker Bot ever not sold in stores!

All assembly required.


Join us on Wednesday, March 21 at 4 p.m. in the Vortex and I’ll guide you through the simple steps to make your own Marker Bot to astound your friends and fellow marker enthusiasts. No longer will you have to slave away endlessly, moving markers by hand!

Marker Bot to the rescue!

Register now!




Anime Recommendation: How to Keep a Mummy

how to keep a mummyAge Recommendation: 11+

Genre: Comedy

# of Episodes: 8 (so far, it’s still currently airing)


“Kashiwagi Sora is living a normal high school student life, when his “adventurer” father sends him a mummy from his travels in Egypt! Sora balks at the letter from his crazy dad (“I found a cool mummy, so I decided to leave it with you, son!”) at first, but the mummy that emerges from inside the huge coffin is a mere 12 centimeters tall–small enough to fit in the palm of his hand. Not only that, it’s shy, a crybaby and most of all, heckin’ cute. And so, Sora and ends up keeping the mummy, naming his new little buddy “Mii-kun.” But living with a mummy might be easier said than done!” -Crunchyroll


We watched this for Anime Night in March and oh my glob. This is the cutest anime I’ve seen in a LONG time. I was skeptical about showing it, I knew it’d be age appropriate, but not sure if it’d be overly cutesy (like Bananya, I love Bananya, but it can be an acquired taste for some, definitely). My worries were completely unfounded.

If you’re in a bad mood from a bad day full of awful badness, this will make it so much better. It’s a little ray of sunshine on a cold, uncaring world.

It’s heartwarming, funny and absolutely endearing. It will definitely make you want to own a little Mii-kun of your own! I know I dooo. Watch it for free on today! You seriously won’t be disappointed. What are you still doing here? GO WATCH.