A-Kon 26! Kawaii Coven!

So, I haven’t posted in a long time. Blah blah blah, excuses and what-not. Well, I returned home from my annual trip to Dallas for A-Kon a few of weeks ago, and since I’ve been blogging about that every year, I figured now is a good time to get back to blogging.  Here we go!

Thursday: Arrived in Dallas slightly later than anticipated. I blame jerk-ass truckers and road construction! Chantel and I picked up our badges, and then we took off with Liz for our traditional jaunt around Dallas. And by jaunt, I mean we went to LUSH, H-Mart, and to get food. We ate at Mooyah, which I’d heard of but never been to, and their turkey burger and sweet potato fries are delicious, especially when you haven’t eaten a substantial meal all day. Unfortunately, our delays caused us to miss an event we wanted to attend with Liz. Boo. We’ll have to make up for that next year!

This year we had two friends (Sara and D) with us that hadn’t attended/stayed in many years. It was really fun to hang out, and we spent Thursday evening having drinks and snacks, watching Archer, and playing Cards Against Humanity.

Friday: After eating breakfast, having coffee, and getting ready, we headed out with one destination in mind. The DEALER’S ROOM/ARTIST’S ALLEY! Yes, shopping! Also, Liz, Bobii, and D were dressed as the kids from Bob’s Burgers, and they looked great! The only specific item I was on the lookout for was a pink wig for with my witch costume. I hadn’t found one I liked and could afford in advance, so all I had was pink clip-in bangs and was kind of counting on being able to find a wig in the Dealer’s Room. Of course, I got distracted looking at everything else, drifted from the Dealer’s Room to Artist’s Alley, and returned to the room without looking at wigs. But Chantel and I wanted to take our dollies down to the DollAkon room, so we had a snack and ventured back out. And lucky me, in addition to finding a new wig by the awesome La Esperanza Doll Shop in the doll room, I found myself the cutest pink wig in the Dealer’s Room! Success!

There were way more food truck options this year, and we opted for food from Cajun Tailgaters for dinner. I had jambalaya and hush puppies. The jambalaya was super spicy but good, and the hush puppies were delicious!

Friday night was also spent having drinks and snacks, watching HGTV, and playing Super Fight.

Saturday: Cosplay day! Chantel, Liz, Bobii, and I were witches on Saturday. It was fun dressing up again, and while we were in costume, I commissioned LULULIN to do a Cat-icature of me. It turned out so cute, and I can’t wait to get it framed. I also commissioned Haggard Hare to draw a chibi of Saga after seeing how cute the one was that Chantel had done of Rook. Also on Saturday, our friend Dai, who we hadn’t seen in like…four years, came by. She was in town for a concert, but wanted to see us for a bit and check out the con. However, the registration lines had gotten so long, that Liz and I ended up letting Dai and her friend borrow our badges so they could go shop for a bit. So Liz and I hung out in the room for a while, which allowed us to just chit-chat, get the room a bit more organized, and retrieve more ice for the ice chest.

We witches had tickets for the Goblin Market Saturday night as well. The idea is that attendees can trade away intangible things such as eye color, memories, etc, in exchange for various trinkets and baubles, but no money can exchange hands. As the hour approached, we were all a bit iffy (anxiety!) and still hadn’t had dinner. So, we ordered Thai and figured we’d see how we felt after eating a good meal. It was a little after 8 (when the market was supposed to open), and we decided to not chicken out, especially since we’d spent money on the tickets already. I’m so glad we went!

The event took place in an area of the hotel outside of the main event spaces. In line, one of the goblins approached us and got us a bit pumped up for what might await us inside. I was even more excited after that, and that guy’s character was great! We went inside, got our actual tickets (there was a raffle at the end of the market), and made our way upstairs to the increasing volume of music played on a piano. When we arrived on the landing, there was a man and woman playing piano and singing for the entertainment of market attendees. We went into the room on the right first and just sort of looked around until we saw people with little bottles in their hands. Then we saw there was a line from the landing at the top of the stairs into another room on the left. While we waited in line, the lady entertainer saw Bobii dancing along to the music and invited her to dance. When we thought back on what the goblin told us while we were in line, we realized that Bobiii had enjoyed a dance with the devil! Oh my! She was also approached by a goblin wanting recipes, as all of hers had been stolen!

When we made it into the other room, there were two tables set up where people were playing black jack to gamble away memories and such for whatever the goblins were trading. I don’t know black jack and all the seats were filled, so I passed on that. However, on the left there was a counter where two goblins were offering up a taste of whatever sin you might like to try, no strings attached. Intriguing! I couldn’t decide what I wanted, and ended up picking Wrath when it was my turn. Bobii also chose Wrath, Chantel chose Lust, and Liz chose Sloth. Of course, we all had to sample each other’s sins. Wrath was a bit fizzy, sort of like lemon-lime soda, but with a burning feeling as it went down my throat. But, I drank it all and now have the bottle on display on my desk. Upon returning to the room on the right, we figured out that one goblin wanted stories, memories, and other such things in exchange for little glowing vials. One goblin was acting as a sort of fortune teller, though we didn’t linger near her area for long, so I could be wrong. Another goblin was accepting souls in exchange for whatever he deemed worthy as well as dealing in revenge (in the form of little voodoo doll charms). I was ready to offer up my soul and sign a contract for unlimited success doing what I love, but even when Chantel and I offered him a 2-for-1 deal on our twin souls, he chose others with which to make his final deals. Ah well, maybe next year. There was also a performer doing things like lifting a cinder block attached to ropes that were attached to his beard, snapping his hand in some kind of hinged trap, and hammering a nail into his nose. At the end of the evening, the goblins gave away some prizes, and Bobii won a cool carved wooden lamp before we were encouraged to hurry away from the market, for once the market is over and the market truce is no longer in effect, the goblins can keep any stragglers. It was fun, and I would definitely like to do it again next year. And now that we know what it’s all about, we won’t be so apprehensive.

When we went back to the room, we packed up as much of our things as we could, showered, and watched TV for a while before going to sleep.

Sunday: Boo, last day of the con! After checking out of the room and taking our luggage to our cars, we walked around for a while before bidding Bobii and Sara farewell. Then Chantel, Liz, and I went to the food trucks to get lunch. I got a super yummy Everything But the Kitchen Sink pizza from the VIP Pizza truck , and we sat on the floor in the atrium to eat and people-watch. After that, we wandered the Dealer’s Room and Artist’s Alley for a while longer before deciding it was time to start our 6+ hour drive home, so we too parted ways.

All in all, A-Kon was a lot of fun this year. Of course, there are always people that are going to annoy me or things I wish were slightly different, but I think they’ve made things a lot better since the first year the convention was held at the Hilton Anatole. I’m glad I was able to spend time with D and Sara since they hadn’t stayed with us in a long time and even though D had to leave the con early due to a family emergency, and it’s always a good time hanging out with Liz and Bobii, so I can pretty much guarantee that, convention aside, I’ll have fun while I’m there.

We’re already talking about potential Welcome to Night Vale cosplay plans, and I’m already looking forward to another year nerding out with my friends at A-Kon!

Note: Photos used in this post do not all belong to me.  They were taken by myself as well as Liz and Chantel, and were nabbed for use here.  ^_^v


A-Kon 25! Princess Party!

The first weekend of the month saw my sister, our friends, and me making our annual trek to A-Kon in Dallas, Texas.  As in previous years, we arrived on Thursday ready to enjoy the convention and hoping for a better experience than last year, when the Hilton Anatole and A-Kon were newly acquainted.

As far as organization goes, from what I experienced, things were much better! We didn’t have to wait in lines to get into Artist Alley and the Dealers Room.  Of course, I can’t say anything regarding wait times in registration lines because Chantel and I donated to A-Kon’s Kids Need to Read charity initiative, allowing us to skip the regular registration line.  When we first saw the charity table there was a line of perhaps 20 people waiting to pick up their badges, but as we headed downstairs to see how it was while we waited for Liz and Bobii to make their way down so we could do some running around town, there was nobody waiting!  We were able to walk up and get our badges, and we only had to wait as long as it took for them to pull our badges out of their little box and check our confirmation number.  It was great, and something I would definitely do again next year.

Also, before we headed out we gave Liz and Bobii their very belated Christmas gifts, and Liz gave Chantel and me a box full of awesome goodies (also late Christmas gifts), which was fun!  She didn’t label anything, so we had to guess which items were for each of us, and we totally got it right.  Liz knows us both so well!  ❤

I was disappointed that With Photo, the purikura place that had become a traditional Thursday stop for us, had relocated to a mall that looked like the set of a zombie movie and was closed when we stopped by.  Additionally, over the course of the weekend, we were informed via email that the shop is going out of business.  How sad! It was so much fun! Other stops on our Thursday jaunt around Dallas included lunch at Panera, the Galleria (Sephora, LUSH, Godiva, and more), H-Mart, and Mozart Bakery, before heading back to the hotel to relax.

I used to be all about waking up really early, getting ready, and heading down to enjoy the con and quickly as possible every morning.  Now, I think we all take a more leisurely approach.  We ate breakfast in the room every morning, took our time getting ready, and didn’t worry about how early we could get to the Dealers Room or any other area of the convention.  Most of what I did this year was the same as last year.  I wandered the shopping areas of the convention (including DollAKon this year), and didn’t really take in much other than that.  I would really like to start taking part in more aspects of the convention again, like checking out the concerts, dances, and seeing if there are any workshops or panels I might be interested in.


But I do enjoy shopping, and I picked up quite a few cute things in Artist Alley and the Dealers Room, including an adorable AlPacasso plushie I’ve named BonBon (he’s so cute!), the yummy smelling Satsuma Samurai salt scrub from SkullSoap, kawaii stationery grab bags from Shop Kawaii, and a number of other items.  Also, I loved just walking around and seeing everyone’s costumes!  I should have taken more pictures.  The Attack on Titan cosplayers were particularly entertaining.

Friday night, we ordered pizza, drank some very strong lemon drops (thanks to Liz), and talked until we decided we were hungry again and went down to the food trucks to get sliders, which were super yummy!  Also, on our way to the food trucks, we got stopped and scolded by Professor Snape for wandering the corridors after curfew!  Oh no!  Commence giggling like school girls!

Saturday was mostly the same as Friday, except that we dressed up as our own versions of princesses from Adventure Time.  I was Princess Bubblegum, Chantel was Raggedy Princess, Bobii was Flame Princess, and Liz was Lumpy Space Princess.  Oh my glob!  It was pretty fun, especially considering it was my first time cosplaying and I was a little unhappy with my wig.  However, I had my picture taken with some guys dressed as the Banana Guard (see first set of images), who were totally in character, sounded like the Banana Guard, and addressed us all as princesses (foxy princesses at that!).  That was probably my favorite part about my cosplay experience aside from the fact that I was dressed up with my friends.  Good times!  I’m glad I made more of the little accessories I wanted for my costume myself instead of buying them.  Additionally, using boots I already had and hand-painting a solid black shirt allowed me to save money, which was really important to me.

We ordered Thai for dinner, had a couple of drinks, got a visit from another Dallas-area friend) and played a couple of games of Cards Against Humanity.  I won both games, and I’m not sure what that says about me.  Haha!  And at about two o’clock in the morning, the fire alarms went off in the hotel.  Thankfully, we weren’t asleep, but Liz had just gotten out of the shower, and we were all in our pajamas.  But, we did as told and headed to the stairwells where we were informed that it was a false alarm (apparently some people were smoking in the stairwells somewhere in the hotel).  Excitement!  Adventure!  Thus, concluded another day at the con.

Sunday was a usual convention Sunday.  I didn’t put as much effort into my makeup or my hair, and I spent most of the morning packing up, cleaning up, and getting ready to check out.  Then we spent a couple more hours wandering the convention space, had some lunch, and we our separate ways.  Chantel and I had a 6+ hour drive home that, once again, ended up being more like an 8+ hour drive.  I don’t know what it is about leaving the Dallas area on a Sunday afternoon that delays our getting home so much. Hopefully that will improve by next year.

As usual, I felt sad at the end of the weekend.  I always start to miss and feel nostalgic for that convention atmosphere, all the people gathered to enjoy common interests and interact with new people, and the company of my wonderful friends.  I’d like to start attending more than just one convention throughout the year (I may have said this last year too), maybe check out some events I’ve never been to.  But until then, I’ll be looking forward to next year’s A-Kon and the adventure we’ll have when that time comes.

To those who attended A-Kon, how did you feel about this year’s event compared to last year’s?  And for everyone, tell me something about your favorite convention!

Things I Love Thursday: Convention Stuffs

Hello there, everyone!

I hope everyone is doing well on this lovely (though incredibly hot) Thursday.  I’m staying cool inside and hoping to quickly kick this cold or whatever it is I have.  I’m going to go ahead and blame being around so many people at A-Kon.  I used to get sick after almost every convention I attended, but this is the first time in several years it has happened.  So disappointed!  Anyway, here is my very convention-centric list for the week!  And I’ll hopefully have a proper A-Kon post up soon (just gotta load my pictures to my computer and wait for a few more from a friend).

  • A-Kon!
  • Cards Against Humanity.  Does it say anything in particular about me that I won both games we played?
  • Cosplaying with friends.
  • Mozart Bakery.
  • BBQ Chicken pizza.
  • A wonderful box of goodies from Liz.
  • Frozen cappuccino colada.
  • Being called foxy by the Banana Guard (I was in my Princess Bubblegum costume).
  • Finally getting home after a slow, and therefore much longer, drive from Dallas.
  • Catching up on Minecraft and other game-play videos.
  • Hot tea with honey.
  • Laughing.  😀
  • The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones movie.

Until next time!


Cosplay Planning: Punk/Rock Princess Bubblegum (Adventure Time)

I’ve never cosplayed before, though I’ve thought and talked about it many times throughout my almost 11 years attending conventions.

Last year at A-Kon, my lovely friends and I discussed doing an Adventure Time princesses group this year, so I’ve been mulling over the possibilities every since.  When I decided to go with Princess Bubblegum, I was pretty sure I wanted to do my own version of her, so I’m going with a punk or rocker version of Princess Bubblegum.  Now, hopefully I’ll be able to get everything I need in time to pull it all together, but for now I thought I’d share some of my ideas here.  Maybe someone reading this will have some additional ideas or suggestions to share.

I am so not good with graphics programs, but I put together a silly little collage of some of the things I like/want to get, with a list of things I still need to decide on/consider…such as how to go about making my own version of PB’s crown.

collage-new version

Clock-wise from top-left:

Dr. Martens 1460 W Hot Pink Patent Boots or something similar, and perhaps less expensive.

Rock & Republic Embellished Denim Vest, which is already in my possession, though I’m not 100% whether or not it will actually become part of this costume.

Wig from Miss Violet Lace, though if I want this specific wig (though I may still modify it by cutting the bangs straight), I may have to request a custom order as I haven’t seen a listing for one for many months.  Also, I never realized how hard it was to find the perfect pink wig!

Bubblegum Rock T-shirt

Science the Rat Iron on Patch from That’s What I Needed @ etsy.

Pink Crystal Pendant Necklace (which I already have) from The Young Aesthetic @ etsy.

Needle Felted Peppermint Butler Brooch from Fluffy Parcel @ etsy.

Science Pin from Hey Chickadee.

Some of these things may change.  Also, as you can see by my list, there are some things I have no ideas about yet.  At first I was thinking of getting a sort of tutu-type skirt, but I’m really not sure.  Additionally, I don’t know what other jewelry or accessories would work well, how I should do my makeup, and what I should do about the crown (though I have an idea I might try out).  So yes, these are some of the things I’m considering for my very first time cosplaying.  We’ll see how it goes if I’m able to get what I need and make it work!

A-Kon 24

I was in Dallas May 30th to June 2nd to attend A-Kon, an anime convention I’ve been going to since 2004.  Chantel and I drove up on Thursday, grabbed our friend Liz, checked into our hotel room, and went gallivanting around the Dallas area before settling into our hotel-home.

We grabbed lunch at Chipotle and did a bit of shopping.  We stopped by a LUSH store at Liz’s request, and had a fantastic time smelling and testing all the lovely products.  This was my first time in a LUSH store, and now I wish we had one down here in Corpus Christi.  I could probably spend a load of money in there, but was fairly reasonable and walked out with a Fizzbanger bath bomb and a Mange Too massage/lotion bar.  Following that, we went to H-Mart, which is a rather large Korean grocery store.  When we arrived last year, we did the same thing.  I suppose it’s becoming a bit of a tradition.  We went to the Purikura shop and played in one of the photo booths before browsing the grocery store and picking out a few snacks.  If you don’t know what purikura is, it is short for purinto kurabu, which is print club.  Each booth has a variety of options to choose from before snapping your photos.  When you’re done, you leave the booth, move to another curtained area, and decorate your pictures with a variety of stamps, borders, words, and other things before you finalize your selections and your photos print out.  Then you can keep them as one sheet of pictures or cut them apart and share them with friends.  Additionally, they are sticky-pics, so you can peel off the backing and use them to decorate other items.


Then it was off to the fantastic Mozart Bakery for pastries.  It’s so hard to decide what to buy when everything looks so delicious.  But we made our choices, did the rest of our running around, and headed back to the hotel to wait for one more friend to join us.  Once Bobii arrived, we attempted to go pick up our convention badges, but they were closing the registration lines just as we got there, so we opted to grab some dinner and go hang out in the room for the night.

This was the first year since I’ve been attending A-Kon that the event wasn’t at the Sheraton downtown (formerly the Adam’s Mark hotel).  Instead, it was at the Hilton Anatole, which I have stayed at before.  It’s a beautiful hotel with a lot of space, including lovely outdoor space, and a large collection of Asian artwork.  Additionally, the hotel made sure to have a variety of food options available for con-goers.  There were also food trucks parked outside throughout the weekend.  However, there were things that I was less than pleased with regarding the hotel and the convention this year.  Regarding the hotel, I feel like the convention-goers were pre-designated as untrustworthy hooligans, as our room was lacking several things that should have been standard room amenities.  Perhaps I’m wrong about this, but it makes me feel as though these items were removed in advance to avoid having them stolen.  For example, we had no hairdryer, ice bucket, or alarm clock.  Additionally, a king-sized bed that should have had four pillows had only three, and when we called down to request more, we were told they were already out of pillows.  Ultra sadface.

 As far as the convention goes, I know setting up such a large event in a new venue is probably troublesome and is likely a series of “let’s see what works best” instances, but that doesn’t make them less annoying.  I’m used to standing in long lines to pick up my badge every year, but the line Friday morning/afternoon seemed particularly ridiculous.   Chantel, Liz, and I were a bit cranky by the time we finally reached the tables to get our badges.  And poor Bobii, who didn’t pre-register and was buying her badge on-site, waited in an even longer line.  As excited as I was to get into the Dealer’s Room, we decided to go back up to the room, make sandwiches, have something to drink, and de-grump before going back downstairs.  Bobii had just made it out of the line when we got back to the area, but we’d made and brought her a sandwich so she didn’t have to wait to go shopping with us.  Honestly, I wasn’t particularly excited by most of the merchandise I saw this year.  Maybe I was just disgruntled over the long registration line, but I just didn’t feel like shopping.

After wandering for a while we went back up to the room and, with much difficulty, decided to order Thai food for dinner.  We had drinks, stuffed our faces, and then played a hilarious game of Cards Against Humanity: A party game for horrible people.  It was so much fun, and I highly recommend it!  Not content to sit around the room all night, we adventured into the hotel in search of some sort of adventure.  The garden area seemed like a good place for such things, so we walked along the trail for a while before settling into a nice, soft spot of grass for some cloud-gazing.  It was rather nice, and it makes me glad the hotel has such a wonderful outdoor area for guests to enjoy.

The next morning Liz and Bobii got suited up in their Rarity and Applejack (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic) costumes, and I snapped a few pictures of them outside before we all started melting out of our makeup and Liz’s feet fell off inside her awesome Jeffrey Campbell boots.  Ha!

We wanted to scope out the Dealer’s Room again before they closed for the night, but we made it in with only ten or so minutes to browse, so it was another unsuccessful shopping trip.  So, we went back to our room to roll around for a while and decided to order Italian food for dinner.  This was a horrible decision because I think our eyes and brains were bigger than our appetites.  We ordered pasta, which came with salad.  We ordered bread because we didn’t know the pasta already came with bread.  We ordered a small pizza to share because Liz wanted a margherita pizza, and we ordered dessert too.  Geez!  But it was so romantic!  We cleared off the little table/desk in the room, made ourselves some drinks, and ate way too many carbs.  Wanting to enhance the mood with some romantic music, I put on the Midnight in Paris soundtrack, which was quite perfect.  We followed up our lovely and horrible dinner with another game of Cards Against Humanity, occasionally distracted to look at the lightning flashes outside our window.

Our plan was to go to the dance/rave that night.  We got a late start, especially after our stupidly large meal.  Who wants to eat a large quantity of Italian food and then go dance?  We eventually made it downstairs, but were disappointed in the music and didn’t feel compelled to dance, so we wandered the hotel for a while before once again going back to the room.

The elevator situation wasn’t as bad as I imagined it would be Sunday morning, and the quick check-out option on the phone made our exit even smoother.  After loading all of our junk into our cars, we went back to the Dealer’s Room for a last try at finding items that really spoke to our souls, we might say.  I did end up getting a cute Rilakkuma bag to carry at the next convention I attend.  It’s adorable and gives me just enough room to carry my ID, bank card, some cash, and perhaps other small and potentially necessary items.  And over the course of the weekend I did grab a couple of cute things in Artist’s Alley as well, so the shopping wasn’t necessarily bad.  I just didn’t find myself as excited about as many things this year.

As our convention weekend drew to a close, we grabbed some quick lunch and ate sitting in the grass before going our separate ways.  It always feels sad to be going home after spending time with such great friends.  And there were certainly things I didn’t care for regarding the convention experience this year.  However, I can’t say it was a total bust because of all the great fun I did have, and I’m going to stay optimistic about next year’s con and hope that, learning from this year, there will be improvements to how certain aspects of the event were handled.


Me (top-left), Liz (top-right)
Bobii (bottom-left), Chantel (bottom-right)

Here’s to 10 years of nerding out at A-Kon in Dallas, Texas!

PS. Some of these pictures may have been stolen from Liz, so go visit her and stuff: Liz Locksley.