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How to Survive the Summer Break: A Guide for Once Upon a Time Fans – Part 1

Hi, I’m Julie. And I’m a Oncerholic.

Ever since the Season 4 finale two weeks ago, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about the folks in Storybrooke, and the Enchanted Forest, and all the realms in between.  Now let me put all my cards on the table: I take some fictional stories way too seriously in some people’s opinion. I’m a geek, I’m a shipper, I’m a trivia nut, and I’m a cosplayer. When I get into something I. GET. INTO. SOMETHING. But that’s ok. Emma said so.


I’m kinda emotionally wonky right now.


It’s bad enough that I’m a CaptainSwan shipper, but I’m also so wrapped up in everyone else! Ugh, it’s like my family went on vacation to Paris and left me behind.


I do take comfort in knowing that I’m not the only one who feels like this. Thankfully the internet has given me a place to lay my head.

Screenshot 2015-05-22 at 4.14.22 PM
It’s a little-known website. Not much traffic. You might have heard of it. But probably not.

It’s made me realize that the stress and sadness of doing without Once Upon a Time can be made easier on all of us if we stick together and keep ourselves occupied in the interim.

I’ve come up with a list of activities we can do together to take comfort in the solidarity of our love and yearning for OUAT. Hopefully these projects and ideas will carry us through this wasteland of a summer til we arrive on that special Sunday night this fall at 8/7 Central. Or at least occupy us til the end of the week. And since we don’t have an episode to recap every Sunday, I’ll be posting sneak-peeks, rumors, news, and OUAT related tidbits to tide us over. And also probably fanfic.

Please let me tell you.

Here are ten activities that I hope you find as fun as I did!

1. Bake some apple turnovers. Poison optional.

Is this the most pointless gif you’ve ever seen?

2. Sword fight with your own easy-to-make DIY swords!

3. Spend a day without modern conveniences to commune with your friends in the other realms. No lights, no running water. No drive thru. No CARS! No TVs, DVDs, CDs —


4. Eat Like a Pirate Day! Salted meat, black bread, prawns, and RUM. Oh, don’t forget the limes! Don’t wanna get scurvy!
5. COSPLAY LIKE A BOSS. That’s me and my husband at the Central Coast Comic Con in Ventura, CA.  I was actually pregnant. I thoroughly regret not getting picture of our baby in a hollowed out tree later.

I only made this list so I could post this picture. Not gonna lie.

6. Impersonate your half-sister’s boyfriend’s dead wife! No, no, don’t do that, actually.

7. Make yourself a heart in a box. If you’re extra talented, put a pulsing LED light inside to make it glow.
8. Ask your grandparents or the nearest hipster if they have any old Polaroid cameras and film lying around. Work a little magic of your own! I have absolutely done this, and it works, and it’s awesome!
9. Hold a Once Upon a Time Party. This is by far my favorite set of food, decorations, and favors. Forget searching Pinterest, this blog had the most achievable ideas.
10. Get cholera.  Just kidding. The Enchanted Forest has been referred to more than once as a place where everything tries to kill you. In honor of the crappy health care of that realm, take your vitamins.

No, for reals, even your mom will kill you.


Between the Summer break and mid-season hiatus, it’s a wonder we don’t go nuts waiting!


It’s okay to be mad. This is a rough time we’re going through.


Some days it will seem like all you want to do is destroy stuff.

Other days, even the most hopeful amongst us will give zero effs.
Just remember to stick together. In times of hardship, friends are invaluable.
Maybe have a drink with a fellow Oncer to pass the time and commiserate.
And in the end, keep a smile on your face and remember the good times. There are more waiting for us in Season 5.lanaouat

What are some things you’ll do to pass the time and ease the pain while you wait for September to roll back around?

What story line are you looking forward to most for Season 5?

Here are some poorly organized citations for marginal legality. 

  1. All of this belongs to ABC
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Interview: Joanne Arnett, Creator Of Secret Admirer Handmade Cards

47dce2b4896924dc6cdc5bbf8c20867e_largeJoanne Arnett is an artist on a mission to spread love this Valentine’s Day. Her Kickstarter project, Secret Admirer, has already received a huge response with over 500 backers supporting her efforts to bring a little joy from Loveland, OH to their loved ones and secret crushes. I recently had the opportunity to chat with Joanne about art and romance in general.

Ari: When did you first start crafting and making art?

Joanne: I’m one of those kids who always wanted to be an artist. I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t making something

Ari: Do you think handmade papercrafting is becoming a dying art?

Joanne: I visited the SOFA expo in Chicago this fall and there were some great paper/craft based pieces exhibited. Artists are working with the paper in books and maps and making something completely new. The Hansel & Gretel: a shadow theater note book project  currently running on Kickstarter is a beautiful example of contemporary paper craft. I think craft in general is experiencing resurgence and paper is certainly a part of that. So no, I don’t think it’s dying.

Ari: Where do you normally get inspiration from for your art or crafting ideas?

Joanne: I take a lot of inspiration from photography. The process of developing an image is sort of magic, and that experience of seeing an image appear is important to my work. I’m drawn toward awkward and imperfect images, bad yearbook portraits, mug shots, folk and outsider art.

Ari: What advice do you have for others, particularly women, who are interested in art and crafting as more than just a hobby?

Joanne: Get your work out there! You can make the best quilts, sketches, letterpress cards, whatever. But if you don’t get your work out there no one will know and others can’t enjoy it.

Ari: Did you ever expect such a huge response to your Kickstarter idea?

Joanne: Nope. I hoped there would be fifty people who wanted a $5 postcard so the project would be funded, and if things went really crazy well I might be 200% funded. Surprise! The response has been wonderful. I’ve started writing messages and each one makes me smile.  I feel so lucky to be sending out so many lovely notes.

Ari: What do you love most about Valentine’s Day?

Joanne: We should probably all tell those we love that we care about them more often than we do, so I think it’s nice that there is one day of year designated as a time to do just that.

Rogue Gallery Detail

Ari: What would be your idea of the most romantic Valentine’s Day surprise?

Joanne: A bottle of champagne and a handmade card.

Ari: Are you inspired by any romantic movies and what are your favorites?

Joanne: I don’t know if this is really considered a romantic movie, but that moment when Johnny Depp swings past Mary Stewart Masterson’s window in Benny & Joon is just perfect. And I think Lost in Translation is a beautiful love story, although it’s about a different kind of love.

Self Portrait

Ari: What are some other art pieces you are working on?

Joanne: I am currently creating thesis work for a master of fine arts degree at Kent State University. I break apart the materials used in traditional photography, paper becomes cotton yarn and the metals used in light sensitive emulsions become silver wire, and I build portraits by weaving the new materials together. The image is visible when light bounces off the shiny wire, and it disappears as the viewer’s perspective changes. It’s exciting to create art in a way I’ve never seen before.

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