Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Cool DIY Spider-Man Invites

These invites from Page Turners Hollow are fantastic. I love that they seem pretty easy, but still look really professional. Although The Daily Bugle is primarily associated with Spider-Man, this could work for any Marvel character.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Grand Rapids says "We're Still Alive!" in the coolest way possible.

In response to being included on Newsweek's list of Top Ten Dying Cities the folks of Grand Rapids, Michigan pulled together and made the effin' incredible lip dub video.  With over 3,000 participants the video taken in one shot (as far as I can tell) showcases marching bands, school choirs, a wedding, the police and fire departments, the local TV stations, local celebrities, an epic Nerf battle and pyrotechnics.  It now holds the world record for largest lip dub.  I am so impressed by the commitment and pride shown by the people of Grand Rapids that I actually teared up when they showed the wedding scene. 

I would love to know some more about the behind scenes planning and filming of this spectacular. Anyone know anything more about it?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Godspeed, Spirit

NASA announced today that at the end of May it will cease transmissions to Spirit, the Mars rover that has been silent for over a year.

Spirit and it's sister rover Opportunity landed on Mars in 2004 for what was supposed to be a three month mission.  Thanks to amazing engineering and some creative problem solving by NASA, Opportunity is still moving around the surface of Mars. And Spirit had logged six years of service before it stopped communicating.  Again, these machines were supposed to last three months.

Spirit got stuck in a sand pit in April of 2009.  Unable to move it, NASA declared it's mobile mission over and it became a stationary data collector in 2010.  When NASA was unable to maneuver Spirit's solar panels to best collect the rays of the low winter sun, it's heaters were unable to operate, it's internal temperature dropped to negative 69 degrees Fahrenheit and NASA lost contact.   They decided this week that continuing to send pings to the rover would cut into the resources they could use for other missions.

Spirit seemed to be the epitome of "never give up".  When Spirit first landed it suffered some damage and transmitted nonsense data back to NASA.  NASA engineers were able to nurse it back to health while it was on Mars and it continued it's mission for six years.  It climbed out of the crater it landed in, went on to scale a Martian mountain the size of the Statue of Liberty and it beamed back images of  the first recorded dust devils on Mars.

The rovers piqued our collective imagination.  People talk about them like they have personalities, with MSNBC calling Opportunity an "over-achiever" and Spirit a "drama queen".  They seemed scrappy and adventurous, good ol' American heroes living up to their names.  We love them, and many of us will mourn the loss of Spirit.

My kids are sad.  We've seen documentaries and have read books about the rovers.  Nate is especially fond of them and loved to relate their amazing story to his friends. The rovers got him interested in robotics and he built a robot for his science fair project this year.  Upon learning of Spirit's fate, he got teary eyed and said that he felt as if he was "losing my robot friend". I thought I had this grief thing down, but I don't really know how to counsel a child on the loss of a beloved robot.  I guess like anything, time will make it easier.

From xkcd

Godspeed, Spirit.

NASA's press release: NASA Concludes Attempts to Contact Mars Rover Spirit.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Superhero Costumes Reimagined as "Every Day" Outfits.

I really like this idea.  Of course, I don't actually dress this trendily, nor does anyone I hang out with, but I could totally see Kit being into this idea.

The images at the link are all DC characters, but the artist (Katrina Navarro) has promised some Marvel inspired outfits as well.  I would love to see Phoenix and Emma Frost in "real" clothes, and Jubilee is in desperate need of a wardrobe update.

via: Project Rooftop

Which costume would you like to see reimagined?

Sunday, May 22, 2011

What's in a name?

A recent Twitter post asking "Did you share your baby’s name before birth or did you keep it a secret?" got me thinking about my kids and their "normal" names.

We were prepared for a bit of backlash when we told our nearest and dearest that Nate's middle would be Oz.  What we were NOT expecting were the passionate arguments against giving our child an unusual name.  I mean, we were talking a middle name here.  The only people who would ever really have to know what it was were Nate himself (ooooh, Himself would make an AWESOME middle name!) and the DMV.  Anyway, from the reaction we got you would have thought that were going to name him Bilbo Baggins Feliciano (If that's your kid's name, more power to you).

The pleas of "But he'll get made fun of" and "Are you sure,  he'll be stuck with it forever" began to affect us and there - in the delivery room - we caved.  It was decided that he would have a nice "normal" middle name.  We named him after my dad and moved on with our lives.

Then came Kitty, whose given name is Catherine.  We knew that someday we'd have a girl named Catherine before we even got married.  I had a beloved Aunt named Catherine and we felt it was a good, strong name.  We were set on her first name but we agonized over her middle.  Valentine, after the sensitive sister in Ender's Game, had always been the top choice with the one caveat being that we wouldn't name her that if she was born in February, which is when she was due.So that was out.  I wanted Danger, so that she could truthfully tell people that Danger was her middle name.  SD said that was a great idea...for someone else's kid.   Phoenix was briefly considered, after my favorite X-Men character.  Then SD suggested using one of my names (I'm Catholic so, when including my hyphenated confirmation name, I have a lot of them), but I vetoed that.  Then I suggested my mother's maiden name, but that's the same a male pop singer's, so that was out.  We were getting closer when I suggested my mom's first name, which sounded great with Catherine, but that was unfair to SD's mom.  So, we figured we'd make everyone happy and give her ALL the names.  Catherine Margaret-Jean Phoenix Valentine Lynn Mary-Helen (My maiden Name) Feliciano.   We really, truly considered this until a certain relative was nearly brought to tears begging us not to "ruin the baby's life!".  We shortened it and kept just the two moms' names and people still give us grief!

Catherine Margaret-Jean Phoenix Valentine Lynn Mary-Helen (Redacted)  and Nathan Oz  in an alternate reality where their parents aren't wusses.
To be fair  we did sneak some geekery in there.  Nathan is the name of a secondary X-Men character (Cable) and Kitty's nickname was inspired by Kitty Pryde (and she's just so a Kitty).

Despite all this anxiety and flip-flopping I am happy with their names. It came down to my belief that my kids' names weren't the proper place for  me to express myself or show off my interests. Their names didn't really belong to me.  I could always change my name to Phoenix if I wanted to and if they grow up and want to change their names, I will support them.  Their names suit them, though most people's names do.  I know that a lot of people disagree with me on this, and that's fine. It would be a boring world if we all stuck with the same ten names, and I love hearing the stories behind unusual names

Did you give your child an unusual name?  Or go with something more traditional? Do you have an unusual name? Share your naming stories in the comments below.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Kitty Prepares for the End of Days...

...in her My Little Ponies of the Apocalypse shirt.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Socially Awkward Love Song and Getting Married Young

A love song referencing chaos theory, alternate universes, bell curves, and statistics.  I find it to be pretty  romantic, but I'm a dork like that.  

I've been married for one-third of my life.  Not my adult  life, my whole life. Super-Dad and I were recently talking about arranged marriages and how they are statiscally less likely to end in divorce than a marriage for love. One of the theories about this -which would explain a lot about the longevity of our own marriage- is that in arrainged marraiges, people grow to love each other.

Of course SD and I were in love with each other when we got married. Unlike many of our peers who waited, we got married pretty much right away and at a young age (He was 22, I was 20 and we had been dating for about 18 months). We spent time growing with each other and getting to know each other after we were married. We didn't wait to make sure we were each other's "one". We became each other's one.  We both grew and learned and compromised.  I think a lot of that has to do with being young enough to not be set in our ways, and inexperienced enough to not have too many strong ideas about what our ideal mate would be like.

Being married at young age has had it's disadvantages as well.  It would have been a lot easier had we had been more financially and professionally established when we started a family. Had we waited a little longer to have children (I was pregnant when we got married, though we were engaged) we could have traveled more, seen more shows, gotten new hobbies.  Both of us have felt at times that we settled down too soon and missed out on some of the fun that our friends were having while we were at home changing diapers and being monogamous. Though now that we have kind of equlized, with most of our friends being married and having babies, I'm realizing we really didn't miss out on all that much.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Aspirational Business Cards

Thanks again to the awesome Geeky Hostess for sharing a link that I just had to borrow:

Red Balloon, which apparently teaches English as a Second Language came up with these business cards for kids that feature what they want to be when they grow up:

RedBalloon Kids Business Cards from digous machado on Vimeo.

Super Cute! What would yours say? Mine would have read "Crime Fighting Fashion Designer". Nate's would say "Lego-Building Pizzaiolo" and I think Kit's would say her dream job of late: "Princess Assassin".

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Even when I don't have time to update the blog (I try to shoot for once a day Monday-Friday, but you know how it goes when you have kids), I'm super active on social media sites.  I love to tweet the best nerd news from around the web, and you can follow @ParentingGeekly to keep up.  Parenting Geekly also has an active community on Facebook.  I love the discussion that happens there, and invite you to join us.

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Monday, May 16, 2011

Awesome Amatuer Photo of Space Shuttle Launch

Airplane passenger Steffanie Gordon snapped this photo of the Space Shuttle Endeavour from a flight from New York to Florida.

She took the photo with her iPhone, tweeted it when she landed about half an hour later and experienced a taste of viral fame as the photo got retweeted by NASA, The Weather Channel, ABC News and thousands of other people. 

You can read her blog (about being a woman in the sports industry, how cool!) here.

Remembering Jim Henson

My very first experience with death was on Sesame Street.  Mr. Hopper, ad-hoc caretaker to my beloved "friend" Big Bird, died.  I was four years old when that happened, and had not yet experienced death in real life.  I credit the fact that the subsequent deaths of my grandparents didn't send me right over the edge to Big Bird.

Thanks to the tact, sensitivity and honesty that the writers of Sesame Street used in relating the death of Mr. Hopper (and the real-life actor Will Lee), I was able to understand that death was a part of  life. My grandparents helped raised me and losing them was devastating. Upon learning of their deaths I was angry, I was sad, and I wanted to know why.  In both of those moments I remembered Gordon telling Big Bird  "Just because".   It was truthful, honest and comforting.  It was reassuring to know that Big Bird had the same question I did, and that the adults who promised to continue taking care of him answered the only way an adult honestly could.

Mr. Hooper's death affected almost every child in my generation. We were all able to relate to the perpetually six year old, seven foot tall yellow canary who was able to express a child's feelings about death in such an uncanny manner. That was the magic of the Muppets.  Through a bunch of oddly shaped, brightly colored puppets Jim Henson was able to create a world where we could safely express human emotion.

Kermit the Frog shared our self-consciousness in "It's Not Easy Being Green".  Our odd-ball relationships were justified by Bert and Ernie, who were best friends despite their wildly different personalities. Kids saw through Oscar the Grouch that people still love you, even when you're grumpy. According to those who knew him, Henson himself was a sensitive man who was extremely empathetic.  His wife later suggested that he didn't go to the hospital, even when he suspected he was dying, because he didn't want to bother anyone.  I don't know any parent that couldn't simultaneously relate to and be pissed off by  that sentiment.

Henson passed away 21 years ago today.  I was ten years old at the time and was both Muppet obbsessed and emotionally sensitive. My mother broke the news to me as if a relative of mine had died. I remember it clearly: It was my little brother's birthday and she pulled me aside when we got home from school. "I have some bad news. Jim Henson passed away this morning".  I spent the rest of the afternoon trying not to cry and ruin my brother's day.

I don't know what my life would be like had Jim Henson not been around.  Sesame Street was a comforting blanket over my childhood.  I watched and enjoyed it for way longer than was probably developmentally appropriate. I visited Sesame Place often while growing up in Philadelphia (it's a Sesame Street theme park!  How lucky are kids in the Philadelphia area?)  My parents convinced a neighbor to tape the cable only Fraggle Rock, and they would let me stay up late to watch the Muppet Show. My sister and I rented the VHS tape of Labyrinth 30 times one year.  I mentioned it last week, but it's worth thanking my mother again for going to McDonald's every week so that I could collect all of the plush Muppet Babies that they offered circa. 1986.  I had found my first nerdy obsession and thanks to the high quality product that Henson gave us my parents were happy to oblige.

That Muppet obsession was one of the inspirations for this site. I had collected a vast amount of trivia about Jim Henson, the Muppets and especially Sesame Street over the years, and having kids finally gave me some one to geek out over Sesame with.  I was no longer the weird 20 year old with an unnatural fascination with Big Bird, I was the young mom who really enjoyed watching the children's show with her kids.  I wanted to start a blog for all the parents who were able to share their passions with their kids like I was (finally!) able to.

So thank you, Mr. Henson.  You left us too soon, but with a legacy that I'm certain will be timeless.

You may want to watch this video in private, with many tissues handy:

I encourage anyone moved to do so to make a donation to Sesame Workshop in honor of Jim Henson today.  They do amazing social work here in the United States and around the world.

Friday, May 13, 2011

We Don't Need No Stinking Hypocratic Oath

This is totally how you feel if you have ever played on a server where my 10 year old is playing a medic:
Click here to read the comic at PA.

Via: Penny Arcade

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Free Comic Book Day Wrap Up.

This wasn't our best Free Comic Book Day.  Normally we are up early and spend the day hanging around the comic book shop.  This year no one in our family was feeling great, so we only went to one shop, and it wasn't until late in the afternoon.  Fortunately our neighborhood comic store - Arcane Comics - still had a great selection of kids' books available.  It was an especially exciting time for Kitty, she's gone to FCBD every year since she was born, but this is the first year that she's been old enough to "get" it.

Kit and her stash.
We went over to the free comics rack and I told her that she could pick out three comics to bring home.  The picture to right shows what she actually wound up taking (with the shop owner's permission, of course).  My littlest geek did me proud by not being able to pick out just three.  Proclaiming "But If get the Dinosaur one, the Mickey Mouse one, and the Beronica (what she called Betty and Veronica) then I can't get the Green Lantern.  I've wanted to read Green Lantern for my whole life!"  Needless to say that at that point she could have taken whatever she wanted as the entire shop was overtaken by her adorableness.

She "read" Green Lantern in the car on the way to school this morning.  Her verdict:  "He's Green and he wears a ring.  It's pretty cool."

Unfortunately we missed the in-store appearance by Nate Simpson, creator of Nonplayer, but I picked up Locke & Key, which I have been meaning to read for my whole life, or at least since it was released in 2008.

One of my favorite parts of Free Comic Book Day is hanging out at the comic shop (where I get to help out sometimes) and seeing people come in to get their first comic books.  I love introducing new people to awesome comics and I encourage you to use Free Comic Book Day as a non-intimidating, no  cost way  to check out current offerings.  That being said, after seven years of watching newbies nervously creep into the shop I have a few words of advice:
Super-Dad Checks out the Steampunk Bible after choosing his free comics.
  • Don't be afraid to ask where the free comics are.  We know why you're there, don't be embarassed.
  • Respect limits. Comic shops have to pay for the free comics they give out.  Most stores have a limit of two or three free titles, respect that.  If there's a fourth comic you are dying to check out or if you are planning on making a purchase in the store it doesn't hurt to ask if you can grab an extra, but be reasonable.
  • Make sure the comics you are getting are actually free.  This is pretty easy since they are all marked with a big blue "Free Comic Book Day" logo. Also, show the cashier what you are taking before you leave. My local shop had the free books on one side of rack and graphic novels on the other side.  An embarassing moment with a customer would have been avoided had he checked with someone at the shop before trying to leave with a $30 copy of Blankets.  Also, if something is marked $30, there's a good chance they aren't giving it away.
  • Check out the stuff for sale.  We know you came for free books, and we're totally cool with that, but if you take a minute to see what your local shop has to offer you may be pleasantly surprised.  Arcane carries toys, collectibles, trading card games, clothing and whole bunch of other stuff you never knew you needed.  You don't have to buy anything on Free Comic Book Day, but it's a great opportunity to get to know what the shops in your neighborhood offer.
  • Talk to the special guests.  Comic book creators are usually super excited to talk about what they've done.  If you haven't heard of them, ask them what their book is about.  They aren't there to sit in the store and stare while people awkwardly walk past their table.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Kitty is so Meta

She's watching MST3K on Netflix (I didn't even know it was on Netflix, so her navigating to it and choosing to watch it proves that she is a genetic nerd I think). She always watches movies in party mode because she likes to make the avatar emote. In this case it makes an interesting effect as it appears that our Xbox avatar is in the row behind the cast.

My Dear John to IKEA and Nerdy IKEA Manuals.

IKEA almost ruined my mother's day.  We have the World's Ugliest Chair.  It was a hand me down and I have been asking to replace it since the second it came into our house (to replace the World's Second Ugliest Chair, which had broken).  For Mother's Day SuperDad said he wanted to take me to buy a new chair.  I suggested IKEA, thinking that we could  pick up some other little things we needed while looking for an inexpensive chair.  After almost three hours in there I simply had enough.  I walked away from my cart full of stuff (not the stuff I actually needed, they were out of stock on that, hence the meltdown), grabbed the kids and proclaimed "We're going to a real furniture store".

IKEA, I loved you but I think I've outgrown you.  I will still treasure our moments together in the textiles and housewares sections, but I think it's time I graduated onto to more mature furniture.  I appreciate your aesthetic.  You're a lot prettier than the chair I decided to settle down with, but I have kids to think about. My new chair is sturdy and reliable. It comes with an upholstery insurance plan.  You're just too unpredictable.

Thant being said if you actually sold a TJARDIIS I'd totally come back to you in a heart beat.

TJARDIIS illustration via College Humor

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Keep an eye out later today for a wrap up of Free Comic Book Day!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Geeky Moms!

Happy Mother's Day to all of my fellow Nerdy Moms. In celebration of one of my favorite holidays I've rounded up some of the best moms from the world of Geekery:

I'll bet there are no bedtime struggles at that house.
Sarah Connor (Terminator): The ultimate bad ass mom. We get to watch as Sarah goes from unwitting player in the robot-war-that-hasn't-happened-yet to ass-kicking-escaped-mental-paitent. All the time she is putting herself in incredible danger to protect her son John, so that he can grow up and lead the rebellion which ultimately saves the human race. So important is she to the Terminator universe that the franchise's TV spinoff was called “The Sarah Conner Chronicles” Sure, John saves humanity, but who saves John?

Mrs. Incredible (The Incredibles): Helen Parr/Elastigirl/Mrs. Incredible deserves some credit just for being able to raise
her three kids. If you think your son is hyper, your teenage daughter moody and your toddler is a handful you can surely sympathize with Helen who has to deal with all the typical issues of mom while also dealing with super-speed, invisibility and whatever the heck Jack Jack's power/s were. She's not the “kick-ass” type, but we get to see her fiercely defend her children and save her husband, all while trying to be a “normal” mom.

Martha Clark Kent (Superman): Martha and Jonathan Kent wanted a kid so badly that they didn't ask too many questions when one just happened to land in their corn field. Raising her son with strong moral values and even making his costume in most storylines, Martha encouraged Clark to use his powers for the good of humanity.

Aunt May (Spiderman): While not Peter Parker's biological mom, Aunt May has been has been “mother” to her husband's nephew since he was a young boy and was his only parental figure after Uncle Ben's death. Her strength after the death of her husband becomes an inspiration to Peter, even while he deals with his Aunt's fear of Spiderman. Hard-nosed and stubborn, she holds her own. Even Wolverine won't argue with Aunt May.

Beverly Crusher (Star Trek: TNG): Holding down a prestigious military job while being a single parent to a precocious kid isn't easy but Beverly Crusher handles it while remaining a force to be reckoned with amongst her crew. She supported Wesley as he failed his Starfleet entrance exams, inexplicably saved the entire ship on multiple occasions and then went off to explore alternate realities with the Traveler, all while burying her feelings for Captain Picard.

I think this is actually Boomer...frakin' toasters...
Sharon “Athena” Agathon (Battlestar Galactica 2004): It can't be easy being the first Cylon to reproduce, and with a human of all things. Athena goes to great lengths to protect her daughter Hera, even convincing Helo shoot and “kill” her to get her kidnapped daughter back.

Theresa Wiggins (Ender's Game): Theresa  mothered three children that are so smart the government monitors them with a chip in their heads. In Theresa Wiggin's world the humans are preparing for a second war with the alien Buggers (Or Formics as they are later called). The military has instituted a program to find the most brilliant children on earth and enroll them in an intense military academy from a very early age. Both of her children were deemed smart enough, but daughter Valentine suffers from an overabundance of compassion, and Son Peter is sort of a sociopath, so neither of them make the cut. The government – which has a strict two child policy- allows the Wiggins to have a third child, hoping that it will share the intelligence of its siblings, but have a more balanced personality. Despite being bullied at school Andrew “Ender” Wiggin's upbringing makes him a pretty normal kid who just happens to be a super-genius. Theresa has to say goodbye to Ender as he is whisked off to Space Academy, knowing she may never see him again. She is vindicated in the end as Ender almost single-handldly saves the Earth from alien attack.

Sue Storm (Fantastic Four): Sue was Marvels' first female superhero, and acted like a mother figure from the very beginning. As a central member of the the Fantastic Four, she was the voice of peace and reason in the group. Later, she became mother to a super smart and very powerful mutant son named Franklin. She is also the mother of Valeria, arguably the smartest person in the universe, who just kinda showed up from the future one day. On top of all she's got going with raising her actual children, we all know that she's the one taking care of the three man-children who make up the rest of the Fantastic Four, which now includes Spiderman since her brother Johnny's death.

Shmi Skywalker (Star Wars): Sold into slavery at a young age, she became mysteriously pregnant with Anakin Skywalker, who was then born into slavery. She cared deeply for her son, but allowed him to go train to be a Jedi, in the hopes he'd have a better life. Prior to the Clone Wars she was mercilessly tortured by Tuscan Raiders and she died in her son's arms, saving her the torment of watching him turn into Darth Vader.

My mom: She threw me a Pac-Man themed birthday when I was five, and managed to make my Sweet Sixteen Batman party not as weird as you would think. She bought me a Sega Genesis for Thanksgiving one year and once redecorated my bedroom into a celestial theme in one weekend, complete with a custom bed spread. She never told me that I was wrong for sleeping with a Matchbox Firetruck instead of a doll every night or that I shouldn't wear my TMNT t shirt (Bought from the boys department) to school. She always clapped at my little kid fan fic Indiana Jones dramas, and bought me all of the Muppet Babies dolls from Burger King because she knew how much I loved the Muppets, even though I knew how much she hated Burger King. Most importantly she always, always encouraged me to be true to my weird self, even when I could tell she wished I had more “normal” interests. I love you mom!

Friday, May 6, 2011

X-Men the First Class exclusive footage

MTV.com has premeired "Meet the Characters" footage from the upcoming X-Men: The First Class.

Meet Beast:

...and Havok:

...and Banshee:

...and Mystique:

What do you think?

Cranes for Japan

My local neighborhood blog, MyBallard.com  has a great story about my some kids at my son's elementary school making paper cranes to support rebuilding efforts after the Japanese earthquake/tsunami.  The cranes project is through Students Rebuild, and will be part of a permanent art installation in Japan.  Each crane donated was matched with $2 from the Bezos Family Foundation and the Whittier kids helped raise over $3,000! 

photo from MyBallard.com

The article talks a little bit about how the students were directly affected by the Japan disaster and is worth a read.

Well done third graders (and a shout out to Ms. Kennedy, Nate's teacher last year and one of his favorites ever)!

Free Comic Book Day is this Saturday!

Please do not  give Mom a FCBD book as a Mother's Day gift, but feel free to use the opportunity to pick up something cool from your local comic shop (I suggest the TPBs of Fables or Y: The Last Man if she hasn't read them and  the game Munchkin if she has).

If you are in Seattle head to Arcane Comics and More in Ballard.  If you're not in Seattle you can use the store locator here to find a participating shop near you.

We take the kids every year, and there's always a gem or two in the selection.  Supervise your littles though, as some stores have the kid-appropriate titles mixed in with the very NOT kid-appropriate stuff.

Don't forget to enter the Wally the Wonderbug giveaway and be sure to check out some Nerdy Mother's Day Gifts.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

12 Cool Steampunk Gadgets

A steampunk toilet, a vibrator (!) and a gorgeous laptop are among the beautifully designed steampunk goodies in this collection over at Oddee.  My favorite is this awesome steampunk R2-D2  model.
via Oddee

Make this awesome Princess Leia baby hat

Cheryl of Sew Can Do made this hat for her daughter to wear to a Star Wars birthday party.  She has a tutorial/pattern available in her Etsy Shop as well as Yoda hats!  If you suck at sewing like I do you can also purchase custom made hats.  So cute!

via: Craft

Don't forget to enter our Wally the Wonderbug Giveaway and check out or list of Nerdy Mother's Day Gifts.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Nerdy Girls

Girls-as-nerds is a hot news topic right now.  One one side of the coin, GeekGirlCon is happening in October in Seattle, hoping to celebrate women in Geekdom and the blog Has Boobs, Reads Comics written by  Jill Pantozzi is a comic news site from a woman's point of view.  On the other side are people like this person who wrote a blog post entitled "Having Tits and Liking Spiderman Isn't Shocking Anyone" in which she proclaims that she'd like to punch the aforementioned Ms. Pantozzi in the boobs (really, she said that). 

I understand why someone would question the need for female-centric geek media.  When I first heard about GeekGirlCon, my first response was "why?".   Why do we have to have a seperate con?  Isn't this 2011?  Doesn't something like this make our geeky culutre even more segmented?  Sure, I was made fun of for having Batman posters and reading TMNT when I was a young girl/teenager, but surely that's not the case for girls anymore, right?

Then within the course of a week Nate told me that there is a girl on his school bus who was getting crap from the boys about playing her DS, the cashier at the grocery store asked Kitty if the Spiderman toothbrush she picked out was for her brother and I read about Katie Goldman a little girl who was bullied by some little boys for carrying a Star Wars water bottle.

So, yeah we need events like GeekGirlCon. And blogs like Has Boobs, Reads Comics, The Geeky Hostess, Total Fan Girl and GeekMom  We need to rally around our girls and let them know that  they can embrace their feminitiy while playing Magic: The Gathering, kicking ass at Portal 2 or playing with their chemistry set.  We need them to know that it doesn't matter what the boys, or anyone else thinks.

We're not trying  to shock you, Zooey at Synthesis.  It's not about you, it's not about shocking/impressing a guy or another girl or anyone for that matter.  We read comics because we love comics, we play video games because they're fun and we love Star Wars because it's awesome, and that should be good enough.

Mario Propoganda Art

These would be right up Nate's alley, but they would look just as cool in the living room (if I were a bit hipper, that is). 

The set of four can be purchased at the Fro Design Co Store for $80

via The Geeky Hostess

Hey, don't forget to enter our Wally the Wonderbug Giveaway and check out our ideas for Mother's Day Gifts for Nerds.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Wally the Wonderbug Giveaway!

Ok, so Parenting had a contest where if you retweeted a link you were entered to win Kolkraft's newest baby play saucer, Wally the Wonderbug.  I retweeted it thinking that you, my dear readers, would be interested in the contest.  Lo and behold, I won.  I never win anything, so of course the thing I would win would be something that I can't use. Every single baby in my life is just a little too big to enjoy it (the weight limit is 30 pounds), It's a shame too, because Wally the Wonderbug is pretty awesome.

From the Kolkraft website:

The Kolcraft WonderBug Activity Center opens up a world of discovery and development for baby in the form of a cute, lovable bug. Eight development toys help entertain baby and develop basic motor skills. A bouncy seat pad and a seat that spins around make the Kolcraft WonderBug Activity Center a great solution for growing babies. For games, contests & more check out our Wonderbug website www.kolcraft.com/wonderbug


  • WonderWorm sings, talks, and lights up to engage your baby
  • Batting butterfly has crinkle fabric wings and a mirror inside
  • Bee twists and turns with a big smile
  • Flower rattle includes textured grab handles
  • 8 colorful toys have different sizes, shapes, movements and sounds
  • Toys have been tailored to help your babies development
  • Seat spins 360 degrees for full access to all toys
  • Height adjusts on seat to grow with your baby
  • Easy-to-clean toy tray
  • Machine-washable seat pad
  • Designed for ages 4 months old and up until baby reaches 30” in height
  • Approximate assembled dimensions: 27.25”W x 23”H
  • Disassembles easily for travel & storage
  • JPMA certified
  • Baby activity center requires 2 AA batteries, not included

So....I'm giving it away!  One lucky Parenting Geekly reader in the Seattle area will win the brand new, in the box, Wally the Wonderbug.  To enter leave a comment here telling us what makes you a Geeky Parent.  I'll randomly pick a winner from all the entries on May 13.  For an extra entry, you can tweet a link to this page mentioning @ParentingGeekly and post a comment here saying you've done so.

This contest is limited to those in the Seattle who will be able to pick Wally up.  If you are outside of the Seattle area and win, you will need to pay shipping (probably about $20, though the Wonderbug's MSRP is $69 so it's still a deal!).


You may also be interested in:  Mother's Day Gifts for Nerdy Moms
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