Tag Archives: entertainment

Frozen At Playhouse Square Review

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Frozen At Playhouse Square Review

Hello! This past weekend, I went to Playhouse Square with my dad, brother, and Val Gal to see a matinee showing of Frozen at the KeyBank State Theatre. I have never seen the movie the whole way through but it’s my niece’s favorite and Playhouse Square always puts on amazing shows so I was excited! There were things about Frozen that blew me away and other parts that were… not so much.

Regardless, it was SO special to accompany Val to her first ever live theater performance, which she loved. In fact, she asked if we could go again tomorrow! She was also dressed up in her Elsa costume and it was adorable seeing all of the little Anna and Elsas walking around. 🙂 Now, let’s get to this review starting with the good:

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Although a majority of the acting and singing in Frozen was great, the best thing about the show was, easily, all of the wonderful special effects. The lighting, set design, and flying pieces was true theater magic. This production used techniques that I had never seen before and, honestly, didn’t even think were possible. I had no idea how they were going to create the eternal winter landscape that Elsa created but it really did look like the entire stage was encompassed in snow and ice.

A huge credit should be given to the production team because this show would not have been nearly as good without everything that was accomplished by them. The set was so elaborate and visually beautiful and the lighting and soundscape enhanced everything tenfold. Now that I think of it, the only things that “wowed” me were all production related.

While some of the actors kind of missed the mark for me, there were a few performances that really stood out. F. Michael Haynie who played Olaf was spectacular and a formidable puppeteer too. I didn’t know how they were going to create the talking snowman and a to scale version puppet was cleverly used. It worked perfectly and Haynie played the part so well.

Evan Strand played Sven, Kristoff’s reindeer, and this was also another head scratcher for me. It’s not like they could have used a real reindeer for the show and most animal portrayals by actors can be kind of lame. However, the costume that was used for Sven was one of the best that I have ever seen and I almost thought that it was an actual reindeer at first! His physicality was spot on and I was very impressed – I think he outshined Kristoff completely.

Caroline Bowman as Elsa was pretty good, although I felt like she was a bit boring. Her time on stage was kind of lackluster and what shined during “Let It Go” wasn’t her but the incredible production behind it. Lauren Nicole Chapman as Anna also left A LOT to be desired. She was SO. Freaking. Annoying. Her voice was also very shrill. Granted, I haven’t seen bits and pieces of the movie in a while but I definitely don’t remember Anna being like that – maybe I’m wrong!

Because there aren’t too many original songs in the movie Frozen, a majority of the numbers had to be created for the stage. I liked a fair amount of them and enjoyed “Let It Go”, “In Summer”, “Fixer Upper”, and “Monster” the most. I will say that there were times when it was difficult to hear/understand the actors so that took away from some numbers that I could have potentially enjoyed.

Some of the songs really dragged the show on for longer than I thought was necessary, though. For example “Hygge” sung by Oaken and company was kind of a hot mess. I get that productions more geared towards children have to throw some things in for the adults BUT it felt inappropriate for the kids in the audience. It was, hands down, the cringiest part of the performance.

There were times when Frozen was hit or miss and that’s fine because the biggest success of the show was how much fun Val had. I am thrilled to have been able to share in my love of live theater with her and can’t wait to do something like this again!

What is your favorite musical? Have you seen any good shows lately? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

“Weird Al” Yankovic Concert

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“Weird Al” Yankovic Concert

Hello!! This past Wednesday, my dad, brother, Johnny, and I went to see “Weird Al” Yankovic in concert at the Goodyear Theater in Akron. My brother and I haven’t seen “Weird Al” since 2012 during his Mandatory Fun tour and we had an absolute blast! Although we all stayed up way too late on a school night, we would do it again in a heartbeat for two and a half hours of nonstop laughs. Let’s get to it:

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As you can see by the pictures, we didn’t have the best seats for The Unfortunate Return Of The Ridiculously Self-Indulgent Ill-Advised Vanity Tour. We were in the very last row of the balcony! However, this was actually fine by us because it was like having our own little private section and no one was breathing all over us lol. Despite the crappy pictures, we could still see everything perfectly… Except for when the stage lights were blinding us!

The show began with a set by comedian, Emo Phillips, and it was a riot. Him and “Weird Al” have been touring together for years now and he is also one of Johnny’s favorites so it was cool to see him live. He was SO damn funny and one of his jokes was one of the best parts of the night. Emo mentioned there were probably some liberals here and people cheered. Then, he said there were probably some conservatives here and some guy yelled “YEAH”. To which Emo replied with “Oh, okay. Don’t worry – I won’t talk about politics, religion, or science”. I think this guy was looking for some type of confirmation but he got completely MERKED and that’s always nice to see! 😀

After a rousing set by Emo, it was time for Yankovic to take the stage. The very long name of his tour meant that he was going to be performing some of his lesser known hits, which were primarily non-parody songs. He also told us stories about how each song came to be before playing them so it was neat to hear him just talking to us.

The opening number of the set was “CNR” and songs like “Lame Claim To Fame”, “Close But No Cigar”, “I’ll Sue Ya”, “Dog Eat Dog”, “First World Problems”, and “Skipper Dan” were all included. A moving coffee shop rendition of “Dare To Be Stupid” was also performed. We saw him play that during the Mandatory Fun tour and it was even funnier the second time around. That was definitely one of our favorite songs of the show!

To wrap things up before a lengthy encore, “Weird Al” told us about how his biopic “Weird: The Al Yankovic Story” will be released in November. He said he didn’t know how to feel about it, though, because there’s already a song that tells his life story… ALBUQUERQUE!!!!! So, obviously, everyone lost their shit and he added all kinds of silly bits to it that included starting the song over from the beginning. It was the absolute best.

An amazing time was had by all at the concert and we must do our due diligence to protect “Weird Al” Yankovic at all costs. The man is a national treasure!! ❤

What is your favorite “Weird Al” song? Who else is excited for his biopic? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Fun Summer Activities For All

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Fun Summer Activities For All

With the summer vacation still in full swing, you may be busy thinking of ways to keep the children entertained through the summer. There are countless ways that you can do this and it doesn’t have to cost you a fortune – many places will offer deals regularly to save you money. Take a look below for some amazing ideas for summer:

Theme Parks:

First on our list is theme parks! Most people enjoy the adrenaline rush they get when they attend theme parks. You could make it your mission to visit all of the theme parks around your surrounding areas by going to one per summer. Make a list and tick them off as you go. If you are venturing out with all the family, then make sure everyone is aware of what they can and can’t go on. You don’t want any last minute tantrums when the children aren’t tall enough for a ride.

Aquariums:

Something that is both amazing and relaxing at the same time is aquariums. They are full of marine life that you can spend hours watching. Watching these beautiful fish and mammals swimming around can bring you a feeling of utter peace and tranquility. Being closer to nature has this effect when you take it all in. Taking the children along to an aquarium means that they can attend the talks and feeds throughout the day. This is a great educational experience for children and they can learn all about marine life and how to play their part to keep it safe.

Museums:

If you want to do something that involves being quiet for a couple of hours, then how about a museum? Children love exploring museums and you are bound to have a couple nearby that you can take them to. This doesn’t just have to be art museums, you could also take a road trip to the natural history museum or the science museum. Both of these have exhibits that will keep the children entertained and in awe for hours on end. A lot of museums offer free entry during the summer break, which is a great way to save money.

Bowling:

Bowling can be fun and competitive for the whole family. Many places are giving families great value deals over the summer. One such example is Bowl. Dine. Unwind. Family Fun at your local arcade. The great thing about bowling alleys is that you can now wear your own shoes. Provided these are not high heels or open toed. A lot of people were very self-conscious or grossed out about the bowling shoes so many refused to go. This development means that they have opened themselves up to everyone now.

Summer break is the perfect time to make and capture memories that you and your family will remember for years to come. Have fun with the above ideas!

Featured Image By: Pexels

What To Watch When You’re Bored Of Netflix

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What To Watch When You’re Bored Of Netflix

Finding it tough to find something to watch these days? We’ve all been there. You’ve binged your favorites in two days, and now you’ve got the big black hole of Netflix where you’ve either seen everything or nothing appeals. You can waste a lot of time flicking between menus and never really watching anything!

So what can you do instead? The good news is that there’s a whole wide world out there of film and TV to watch. Who knows, you might even discover some hidden gems! Ready to dive in? It’s time to step away from Netflix and try the following:

Go to the movies:

While not particularly innovative, going to the movies can feel like a rare treat in the post-pandemic world. With most new movies making their way on-demand either instantly or in a matter of weeks, a lot of people take to watching them at home. But while watching movies at home is convenient, there’s still something magical about watching them on the big screen.

Take a look at the most anticipated movies of 2022 and book your tickets to see something at the theater. Dinner and a show, anyone?

Discover TV and movies from overseas:

What’s great about platforms like Netflix is that they help you discover shows you never heard of before. Great TV shows and movies are produced all over the world, and there are a lot of platforms where you can find some incredible new content. If you’re into anime, you can get access to a range of content at https://clearvpn.com/blog/entertainment/best-anime-torrent-sites/, and perhaps fall in love with a whole new genre. It’s fun to check out what’s popular across different countries and find some new shows that appeal to you.

Rewatch childhood favorites:

If you can’t find something new to watch, then why not discover some old favorites instead? Revisiting some of your top shows and movies from when you were a kid is a great way to reminiscence and even share your nostalgia with others. From classic Disney to the shows you watched on Nickelodeon, it’s time to go back in time and give your old faves another watch.

Explore other on-demand platforms:

There’s a lot more to on-demand than simply watching Netflix. There are a lot of streaming services out there to choose from, including Amazon, Disney, and HBO – all with a lot of content to help you make some new discoveries. Most on-demand services come with free trials, giving you the perfect excuse to try something new!

While Netflix is home to some incredible shows and movies, it’s nice to branch out once in a while to keep your viewing fresh. When it is time to return to Netflix, there are some fantastic hacks to upgrade your evenings that will help you get the most from your chill time. Happy watching!

Featured Image By: Unsplash under Creative Commons

Surprise Sweater

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Surprise Sweater

Hey! My Johnny is a huge fan of podcasts and loves to listen to them while driving, hanging out at home, and at work. His absolute favorite is the Last Podcast On The Left, which discusses true crime, gruesome history, and all things horrifying in a humorous way. I, personally, don’t have the attention span for podcasts, however, when Johnny and I are taking a road trip or working on unpacking we usually listen to Last Podcast together.

We have a lot of gear from the LPOTL crew including stickers, books, coffee mugs, and my new sweater that Johnny got me from their online store:

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^^^ We love the elbow patch pentagrams!

A few weeks ago, Johnny and I were having our game night and he decided he wanted to see what was new at the Last Podcast On The Left shop. During his browsing, he pointed out the Hail Yourself cropped sweater and I instantly fell in love with it. I told him as such and without a second thought, he put it in the cart and ordered it for me. He also picked out a few goodies for himself!

We have been eagerly awaiting for our shipment and I couldn’t wait to get home and check it out when he told me that it had arrived. My new sweater is even better in person and I love the fuzzy lettering and oversized shape. In fact, I am wearing it as I type this and it is SO. Freaking. Comfy. It is also perfect for the weather today because it is pretty chilly out.

My Johnny and I love to spoil each other and it is because we both are really listening to each other when we talk. Just yesterday, for example, we were watching Impractical Jokers and Johnny said he loved one of the shirts that Murr was wearing. I looked it up, found it, and have it ready to order as a little treat. This is a constant thing for us and it is such a sweet pick me up to look forward to when one of us says that we have a surprise for each other.

Speaking of surprises and our active listening, my birthday present from Johnny is a prime example of it and you can peep that on tomorrow’s post. Hail yourself!

What is your favorite podcast? What is your favorite merch store to shop? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

What Have We Been Up To?

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What Have We Been Up To?

Hello! Johnny and I have been diligently unpacking away after our big move at the end of April. While that has taken up a majority of our free time, we have still been enjoying ourselves and making time for fun things too. And, yes, part of the fun has shockingly come from the unpacking process itself – which I never thought I would say!

Unpacking:

Actually… Let me rephrase that… It’s not so much the unpacking that’s fun rather than all of the opportunities that come with it. Johnny moved into my apartment so there wasn’t much for us to decide on when it came to furniture placement and decorating together. Now, however, with much more room, it has been nice to come up with our apartment layout as a team.

For example, we have a little nook under our staircase that we decided would be perfect for bookshelves to house our massive collection. When I got home from work, it was a huge surprise because Johnny assembled and filled the new shelves while I was gone. This opened up considerable space having the shelves neatly tucked away and we were able to have a lot more options when it comes to placement of other furniture. It looks so nice!

Another fun part about the unpacking process is that we have a goal in mind: A housewarming/birthaversary party. We can’t wait to welcome friends and family into our new place at the end of the month to celebrate all kinds of big events: Our move, Johnny’s birthday, my birthday, and our one year wedding anniversary. I’m so excited! 😀

Entertainment:

Because of having a functional AC unit in our new apartment, it has become the place to chill both literally and metaphorically. We have been having a blast relaxing in a comfortable climate and watching all kinds of good movies and TV. We are currently binging The Man In The High Castle, which is absolutely EXCELLENT. We have also been enjoying lots of movies including The Imitation Game (One of my faves!), Schindler’s List, Indiana Jones, and Role Models (Both of our faves!).

Of course, this was something that we would have done at our old place regardless of the extreme heat. Actually feeling cold and snuggling up with blankets is a brand new sensation to us, though, and we still can’t get over the novelty of it!

Out & About:

Actual spring weather is finally here with some summer like temps peppered in for good measure. We have been making the most of it with outings in downtown Cuyahoga Falls, at hiking trails with my family, game nights with friends, and meeting our new neighbors. It was easy to stay cuddled up at home with the snowy and rainy days last month. But, there is no excuse now that the weather is nice out and we have been trying to have outings together at least once a week.

It has been an exciting and jam packed few weeks for us and I have been enjoying every minute of it… I’ll enjoy it even more, though, when we are fully unpacked and celebrating at our party!

What have you been up to? What are you currently binge watching? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Pretty Woman: The Musical Review

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Pretty Woman: The Musical Review

Hi! This past Saturday, I enjoyed a lovely girls night out with my mom to see Pretty Woman: The Musical at Playhouse Square. Every year for Christmas, my dad purchases season tickets at Playhouse Square and we divide up the shows between the family members. Originally, my mom and dad were supposed to go to Pretty Woman but he just had surgery so the tickets were fair game.

I was shot down by both my sister and Johnny to see the show with me and my mom finally agreed to come with, which I was so happy about! I can’t say that either of us were chomping at the bit to see the musical, but we were more looking forward to spending time together and it was a perfect night:

My mom and I got all dolled up and headed to the theater in downtown Cleveland around six o’clock to make it in time for the seven thirty curtain call. After taking some pictures, using the facilities, sharing a mimosa, and finding our seats, we made it just in time. It was almost a full house at the beautiful Connor Palace but no one happened to be sitting by us, which made it even better lol.

The set of Pretty Woman was amazing and featured the famous Hollywood sign, palm trees that lit up, and gorgeous ornate designs for the hotel as well as lots of set pieces that moved effortlessly across the stage. I have never seen Pretty Woman the movie before so I wasn’t sure what I was getting into but I did know that it was about a working girl who had her big break with a rich client.

My mom and I both weren’t overly impressed by the leading lady who played Vivian and the man who played Edward. While Vivian was cute, quirky, and obviously talented she was kind of difficult to understand sometimes while singing, which took away from her big moments. The man who played Edward was fine and, of course, he could sing well but he also could have been anyone and it made for a somewhat lackluster performance.

I could have taken or left both the male and female lead and it was the supporting characters that really stole the show, in my opinion. Vivian’s best friend, Kit, was fabulous and I loved her rock n’ roll voice and she had a lot of funny lines. “The Happy Man” who played the hotel manager/narrator was also excellent and most of our favorite parts in the musical came from scenes with him in it.

The first half of the show was pretty good, despite some songs that I could have definitely done without. However, it picked up the pace a lot in the second half and we both enjoyed that much more. Both my mom and I had similar sentiments on our favorite parts and absolutely loved “On a Night Like Tonight” when the hotel manager taught Vivian how to dance. We also really liked the opening and closing numbers as well as “Never Give Up on a Dream”.

One of the biggest stand out moments was “Entr’acte/Opening Act II” when Vivian and Edward went to the opera. The woman who sang as the main performer in the opera was divine and I could seriously listen to her all day. She had the most beautiful voice and it begged the question of “how does she do that?” as soon as she began to sing. It was wonderful!

Overall, Pretty Woman: The Musical was alright. It was a great show for a girls night but my mom and I agreed that it was one we would have skipped on if we didn’t have season tickets. The best part, of course, was spending the evening with my mom and that made me love every minute of it. Make sure you keep it posted for an OOTD from my night out soon! ❤

What is your favorite musical? What is your perfect night out like? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Having A Laugh

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Having A Laugh

Hello! When it comes to mine and Johnny’s usual entertainment after the work day, we tend to enjoy more dramatic shows like Criminal Minds, Wentworth, and all of the true crime. Then, before bed we will turn on something funny. However, recently, all we have wanted to do was laugh and have been in hysterics over the following:

Step Brothers:

Step Brothers is my favorite comedy movie in the whole world and Johnny and I quote it daily. No matter how many times we watch it, we still laugh like it’s the first time we ever saw it. We have seriously watched it three times in the past month because it is such a comfort film and we never feel like scrolling through all of the movie options on our streaming services. Why Step Brothers didn’t win an Oscar for Best Movie Ever is beyond me!

UHF:

Johnny and I are huge “Weird Al” fans and, shockingly, I have never seen UHF until this past Sunday and it was SO. Funny. Taking a peek into Weird Al’s brain while watching this flick was nothing short of a delight and we have every intention of watching it again really soon. There were so many “wtf” moments in UHF and I truly couldn’t even lol. It has already become a much loved film to quote in our wide arsenal of movie quotes after just one watch.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022):

My husband and I both have a special spot in our hearts for all things horror and, despite the lackluster reviews of the new Texas Chainsaw Massacre, I really wanted to watch it. I am so glad that we did because we actually both ended up really enjoying ourselves regardless of the naysayers. Is it a traditionally funny film? Absolutely not. But like all classic slasher flicks, it was just so goofy and there were parts where we were in stitches.

If you are expecting the masterpiece that is the original TCM (My all time favorite horror movie), then don’t bother with the new one. However, if you are looking for a way to kill an hour and a half and you’re a slasher fan, then I say: Go for it!

Superbad:

Superbad is another movie that Johnny and I will put on when we can’t think of anything else to watch and it never disappoints. We’ve probably watched it over fifteen times in the two and a half years that we’ve been together! Superbad is yet another movie that works its way into our daily vernacular and it is much beloved by us and literally every single person in our friend group.

Tim & Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie:

Johnny and I love us some Tim & Eric and had a viewing of their Billion Dollar Movie after watching UHF on Sunday. They are straight up ridiculous and come up with some of the weirdest shit that I have ever seen and that is why we love them! Tim & Eric formed DOBIS (Doing Business) to earn the money back from a billion dollar movie they made that flopped and work to renovate an old mall. It is just as crazy weird as everything they always do and I would never expect anything less.

Maybe it’s the crappy weather Ohio has been having lately or the good old fashioned seasonal depression that have put Johnny and I in a comedy mood and I am so not mad about it. Everything seems a little better after a laughing sesh with all of our favorite funny movies!

What is your favorite comedy movie? What is your favorite streaming service? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Using Tech To Improve Your Mental Health

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Using Tech To Improve Your Mental Health

Mental health is something that goes overlooked far too often. Throughout the pandemic, everyone’s screen time increased exponentially. Today, we’re going to explore some effective ways that we can use tech to improve mental health:

Entertainment and destressing:

Many of us feel like we need to destress and unwind at the end of a busy day or a stressful week. Technology offers us a host of entertainment options, which can lift our spirits, distract us from stressors, and help us to feel calmer and more relaxed. From interviews with music stars on TV shows like Tavis Smiley PBS and the latest movies to online games, TV box sets, and customized playlists, you can choose from a vast array of platforms, sites, apps, channels, and shows to enjoy your downtime, boost your mood, and chill out.

Boosting physical health:

Looking after your body often has benefits for your mind. Mental and physical health are intertwined. More and more people are using tech to improve their health and reduce the risk of illness and disease. Examples include using wearable activity trackers, food diary apps, and devices that monitor sleep quality and duration. Increasing activity levels, eating a healthy, balanced diet, and getting enough sleep can make a huge difference to your psychological well being.

Exercise makes you feel good, it aids sleep and it is also a natural stress buster. A nutritious diet fuels your body, preventing you from experiencing low energy levels and ensuring your body gets all the vitamins and minerals it needs. Sleep is vital for optimal mental health. If you’re tired, you may be irritable, your energy levels will be low, and you may experience mood swings. A lack of sleep can also increase the risk of anxiety, depression, and chronic stress.

Connecting with others:

Socializing and interacting with others is proven to enhance mental health. Human beings are naturally sociable creatures and we enjoy talking to others and spending time with friends and family. Technology has been instrumental in bringing people together and encouraging us to make new friends and stay in touch with family and friends even when we can’t get together in person. Technology can help to prevent isolation and loneliness.

Finding help and advice:

Many people find it hard to talk about mental health and they are reluctant to seek advice. Technology can help those who are struggling to find charities or organizations that provide help and connect with others who have been in the same situation. Using smartphones, tablets, and computers can also make it easy for people who want to reach out to find the relevant support by providing easy access to websites or contact details for doctors, therapists, and organizations that offer free advice. It can also be beneficial to join forums or social media groups to meet people who experience similar problems, particularly if you don’t feel comfortable opening up to people you know.

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Many of us are making an effort to protect and improve our mental health. Technology plays an increasingly integral role in modern healthcare and it can help to boost and nourish mental health. You can use tech to destress and have fun, connect with others, enhance physical health, and find help and support all from the comfort of your couch!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

LEGO Hogwarts Chamber Of Secrets Completed Set

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LEGO Hogwarts Chamber Of Secrets Completed Set

Hello! During our holiday break, Johnny and I completed the final set from our LEGO haul, which means that it’s time to buy more! We spent about three hours building the Hogwarts Chamber Of Secrets from Harry Potter and it turned out great. With fun surprises everywhere you looked and awesome extras like Chocolate Frog cards, glow in the dark pieces, and a golden Voldemort, this might be one of my favorite builds yet! Check it out:

Johnny and I are frequent builders of LEGO and I can tell that our skills have improved. Considering the size of this set, it didn’t take us too too long to complete it. We were so pleased with our handiwork! Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets is one of my favorite books and movies in the series and this set definitely did it justice.

While the builds for Hogwarts in itself are always really neat, the Chamber Of Secrets gives it a wonderful contrast. I love how you can make the basilisk move in and out of the chamber just like in the movie. It also includes a slide for the Minifigs to go down and the snake adorned door to enter the depths of Hogwarts. I wish that there was a set just of the Chamber because I would be all over it. 😀

My favorite part of this set is, easily, the pictures of Gilderoy Lockhart and I laugh every time I look at them – they are so funny! Expertly placed Chocolate Frogs and Cornish Pixies are also much appreciated and I can’t wait for my niece to come over to see if she can find them all. She is our future LEGO Master!

Johnny and I are fresh out of LEGO now but I already know which sets I want next, as always. I have my eye on the Astronomy Tower and Hogsmeade Village and I can’t wait to get them!

What do you like to build with LEGO? Did anyone receive any LEGO sets for the holidays? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah