Perler Beads crafts!

Last Wednesday, 8 teens showed up to make things out of Perler beads! Perler beads, generically known as fuse beads, are little different colored beads you arrange on a pegboard. After you've got the image you want, you place parchment paper over it and iron them for a minute. The beads will melt a little, fusing together. Once it's cooled, you can take them off the pegboard and it'll stick! There were lots of patterns to choose from (doing an image search at Google will bring you lots of results, as well as Pinterest, or you can check out Kandi Patterns, a website specifically for fuse bead and pony bead patterns), and I also had some iPads on hand with Bead It! installed on them, which can make a bead pattern out of any picture! The print-out patterns were definitely more popular. Our stock of white beads was unfortunately quite low, so improvisation had to be made (someone used grey instead of white for R2D2 and he came out really good actually). Below are some pictures of the event.

happy sushi roll!
creeper with glow-in-the-dark beads!

Hello Kitty!

Beamo's arms didn't make the fusing process...

Sailor Moon was so large it covered a second board!

master ball

This was a really fun event that I'm definitely looking forward to doing again. If anyone else wants to try, you won't have to wait long, as we'll be doing more Perler Beads at the Municipal Library branch on Tuesday, July 8 at 4:00.


Table Top Gaming and Mario Night!

Last week we had another table top gaming day on Wednesday, the first of what is now a regular monthly Table Top Gaming Club! Nine gamers showed up to play, and I ran a game of King of Tokyo, where each player takes the role of a giant monster, gaining energy to buy crazy new powers and attacking the other players to become the king of Tokyo. Things got pretty cutthroat, but it was all in good fun! There were also games of Donkey Kong Jenga, Connect 4, Monopoly and Uno. I'm already looking forward to next month's meetup, where I think we'll try out a game of Munchkin. If you're interested in playing some table top games, we're meeting on the second Wednesday of each month!

My monster's name was The King, but he did not live up to that title..

Playing King of Tokyo

Monopoly and Uno!

Then that Friday night we had a Mario Night, the main draw of which was the Mario Kart Wii tournament! All characters, vehicles and courses were unlocked, with stages set to random. Everyone played two rounds or two races each and their point totals were recorded. After the two rounds were up, the top four players faced off for one final race on Rainbow Road! There were three different Mario prizes, and first place got first dibs, and so on to third place. In the end Sarah took first place and choose the Mario t-shirt as her prize, Brian took second and choose the Mario poster, and Mary took third and choose to skip over the final prize, the Mario DVD, and instead took one of the Mario mushroom brownie pops I'd made! So the DVD went to fourth place racer John!

In addition to the tournament, there were various games set up for people to play at their leisure. We had Super Mario 3D World running on the Wii U for up to four players, an N64 with Mario games like Mario Party and Mario Kart 64, and a Super Nintendo with Tetris Attack and some Mario titles. Oh, and also a TV playing the old Super Mario Bros. Super Show, the campy cartoon from the late 80s/early 90s! Everyone had a good time, and I hope we get another Mario Kart tournament going shortly, this time for the upcoming Wii U game!

gathered around playing Mario 3D World on Wii U

tournament racing, with old-school systems in back

Mario Kart banana peels and Mario Kart spare tires!

Fireballs and Peach Punch


Getting ready for Mario Night @ Sellers library!

Mario Night is next Friday, May 16! In the interest of switching it up a bit, the prizes will be a little bit different than what's usually on offer for the winners of the Mario Kart tournament. While all three winners will get candy prizes, there will be a large Mario poster, a Mario t-shirt, and a Mario cartoon collection DVD. First place winner will get first pick, second place can pick from the remaining two, and third place gets the one that's left!

In addition to the Mario Kart Wii tournament, we'll have the Wii U hooked up with Super Mario 3D World, as well as older Nintendo systems playing classic Mario titles. Signups are still open! I hope to see you all there!


Testing out the MaKey MaKey kits!

At our last Teen Advisory Board meeting, I brought one of our new MaKey MaKey kits so we could play around with it. It wasn't until a little while in that I thought of taking out my phone and recording! Here's some of the TAB playing Tetris using arrow keys that molded out of clay!

I really wish I'd recorded earlier, when we were playing bongos and other sound effects by touching bananas and plants! The MaKey MaKey is a great little invention that allows you to hook up anything that conducts electricity to this board, which you plug into your computer. The computer just thinks you're hitting keyboard keys. We'll have four kits available to play with during a program this Summer, so look forward to that!

Disk Planters craft

Last Wednesday, we had three brave teens come and brave the thunderstorm to make planters out of old 3.5" floppy disks! Using five disks we hot glued them together into a box shape. We had several empty yogurt containers, and a choice of either planting a grown flower to it or planting a brand new seed. Since the storm ended up keeping people away, everyone ended up making at least two planters and doing both a grown flower and planting a seed. (I planted a few marigold seeds in a yogurt container and had little plants sprouting up just two days later!) There were various things to decorate the disks with, including standard disk labels, duct tape and markers.

While the storm ended up keeping most people home for the day, we still had fun making the planters and hanging out and having some snack food. Big thanks to Christelle for bringing out her phone and supplying us with some music!

Our next craft day is Wednesday, May 28, when we'll be making things out of Perler Beads! I took some beads home to give it a try,and in no time had made a 1-Up Mushroom from Super Mario Bros:

(it still needs to be ironed so the beads fuse) Signups are still open for this one, so if you're interested, sign up and stop by to make whatever you want out of Perler Beads!


Teen Review: Wild Cards by Simone Elkeles

Wild Cards by Simone Elkeles

Ashtyn Parker is the only female football player at Fremont High. She dates the star quarterback Landon and her mother left when she six. Everything is going fine until her team votes her as captain instead of Landon. To top it all off, her sister Brandi, who she hasn't seen for seven years, suddenly comes home with her son Julian and step son Derek. Derek Fitzpatrick is a legendary high school football player who got expelled from his private high school for pulling a prank with his buddies. His father, who is in the Navy, is away for 6 months and his mother died from lung cancer. When he gets expelled, Brandi takes him and Julian with her to Chicago to her parent’s house. When Derek shows up and meets Ashtyn, sparks fly. They annoy each other and bug each other but all throughout Derek acts the part of the savior. When Landon quits the team and joins the rival team, Ashtyn has to find a new QB to take his place and be good enough to take them all the way to states. As the story progresses, Ashtyn falls for Derek and Derek tries to push her away because of his unresolved inner conflicts. Can they both help each other out and will love at the end prevail?

My Opinion:
I loved this book. I am a big Dashtyn fan and I give Simone Elkeles 5 stars for writing a wonderful book. There was just the right amount of humor and seriousness to keep me going. It was such a wonderful and easy read and has become one of my favorite books. I love how the heroine plays football and isn't afraid to get a little dirty. Superbly done and I hope to read more of her books in the future. -Arig

Teen Review: The Ring and the Crown

The Ring and the Crown by Melissa De La Cruz

Princess Marie-Victoria is heir to the British Empire. She is soon to enter in a faithless and arranged marriage with Prince Leopald VII, the Kronprinz of Prussia. The marriage was arranged by Queen Eleanor and the King of Prussia. The problem is that the Princess is not in love or at all fancy Prince Leopald. She is the only girl who doesn’t think him handsome and she enjoys the company of his brother, Prince Wolf, more than him. Ronan Astor, an American heiress, is close to financial ruins and must marry someone rich and make a good match to save her and her family. Aelwyn Myrddyn, a bastard mage, is Princess Marie-Victoria’s merlin and friend. Isabelle of Orleans is Prince Leopald’s fiancĂ©e. All of these people are on their own mission and England for the start of the London season, and specifically the Bal du Drap d’Or (the Ball of the Golden Cloth).

The problem is that Princess Marie-Victoria is in love with her guard. Prince Leopald is engaged to Isabelle, who he soon casts aside. Ronan meets Prince Wolf, while at first not realizing he is a prince, while traveling to England and soon they fall in love. And finally, Aelwyn Myrddyn is crushing on Prince Leopald. Problems arise and someone is after the Princess and the British Empire. Threats are made, lies are told, battles are fought, people die, and everyone gets an ending. Will Princess Marie-Victoria marry Leopald or will Isabelle? What will happen to Aelwyn’s crush and will Ronan find this suitable match of hers by the end of the season?

My opinion:
I’d give this book 4 out of 5 stars. Melissa De La Cruz did a wonderful job in this story. It was different from her Blue Bloods series and I think it was a success. Every chapter had its own point of view and was well written. The story as a whole was interesting and was an easy read. Some parts made me laugh while others had me sympathizing with the characters. Truthfully, I was a little bummed by the ending. It wasn’t the typical happy ending for all and I was wishing Aelwyn and Ronan had their fairytale happy ending, too. However, with that said, I still think this book was successful and enjoyable. For anyone looking for a little history and mystery with their romance, this book is for them.  -Arig