Thrift Store Cosplay Day 16

Thrift Store Cosplay Day 16 Harry Potter fashion blog post wand Wizard

Thrift Store Cosplay fashion blogger nerd post Instagram challenge

Day 16: Harry Potter

Personally, I’m a Gryffindor. So when I found this shirt in Goodwill, I knew I had to have it, not only for my personal closet of items to wear on a daily basis, but also for this series! I already had Harry Potter glasses in my cosplay closet and my wand from Ollivander’s Wand Shop at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando.

Funny story…last time I was at the Wizarding World, I went into Ollivander’s with my friends Erin and Cristina, fully expecting an exuberant child to be picked by Ollivander to do the wand choosing portion of the experience at the store. There I was, in the front row with the biggest grin on my face at least a foot or two taller than the little children eagerly wanting to be chosen by Mr. Ollivander. But one look at me and Mr. Ollivander stopped in front of me, gave me an quizzical look and then proceeded to pick me…ME!!! Sure, some of you might say…”let the children do it instead,” but if Mr. Ollivander chose you, you’d forget that you were an adult and run up to the counter in anticipation of your first REAL wand too…wouldn’t you? No? Just me? Well, regardless…that is the story of where I got my wand!! The end!

Thrift Store Cosplay Day 16 Harry Potter fashion blog post wand Wizard

Harry Potter shirt and pants from Goodwill

Wand from Universal Orlando

Glasses from my cosplay closet

Shoes from my shoe closet (I have many closets!)

Underpants from Richard Leeds International (Not seen in above picture…obviously!)

Harry Potter flay lay

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Photo from Playbuzz.com
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Photo from Zazzle.com

Prequels and Sequels and Spinoffs, Oh My!

If you are someone who is tired of seeing the same 7 or 8 franchises roll into theaters time and time again, I feel bad for ya, son. I got 99 problems, but that is definitely not one of them!

I LOVE them! And I’m not saying all of them or any of them deserve Oscars.

Look…it’s true, some of them are not good at all! But for every stinking sequel there’s a Force Awakens. For every sloppy spinoff, there’s an Agent Carter (her cancellation is not her fault!) or a Rogue One (which I’m already certain will be blowing us all away in under a month.) And for every poorly written prequel there’s a Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. And I’d watch a thousand bad prequels for the chance to get something as delightful as Fantastic Beasts in front of my eyes!!

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We are certainly living in the age of reboots, re-imaginings and big budget franchises. But again I say, I LOVE IT! When word broke that Disney had purchased Lucasfilm and there would be a slew of new stories from that galaxy far, far away I was overjoyed. I love expanded universes. The deeper a story goes, the more involved it gets, the more I can lose myself in the fiction. That’s what makes the worlds of Harry Potter, Marvel and Star Wars so compelling and why they inspire the ticket and merchandise sales that they do.

Do you run the risk of overkilling something people dearly love? Of course. But the alternative is putting that franchise up in a box never to be touched. Never to be reimagined by someone who comes along and loves the world JK Rowling has created as much as JK herself. Art imitating and inspired by art is such a cool thing.

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JJ Abrams grew up on Star Wars, got into movies because of Star Wars and there he was directing his very own Star Wars movie. No matter what you thought about the film itself, doesn’t that inspire you?! JJ is one of us, one of our people (we the geeks) and he got to do what so many of us have only dreamed.

Just think, Harry Potter fans…think of the possibilities that the Wizarding World of JK Rowling holds for you. That world is not closed off. It’s not a 7 book, 8 movie story. There’s so much more and that means big things for you and your imagination!

So I say, prequel it up all you want, Hollywood. Just use Fantastic Beasts as a barometer on how to do it and do it well.

Friends Forever

Disney Day Ladies Weekend Disney Bounding blog post

On the subject of friendships that will not be stopped by distance, hard times or stormy weather! Two of my quality handful came down to sunny, ole Florida for Ladies’ Weekend and it was completely epic!!

Thursday, I picked the girls up from the airport and revels were had!

Hogwarts Adventure Ladies Weekend #SlytherGryffinPuff blog post

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Orlando, FL Ladies Weekend blog

On Friday, the three of us boarded the Hogwarts express and headed for that magical land known as Universal, home of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!! Where we represented each of our houses in style.

I am the resident Gryffindor…brave, daring, chivalrous, courageous.

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Erin is the our Hufflepuff…loyal, kind, honest and friendly.

Ladies Weekend Follow Blog Erin Ellis Hufflepuff #SlytherGryffinPuff

And Cristina is our Slytherin…cunning, ambitious, determined, a leader.

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Together we are a powerful force to be reckoned with and while it’s true that we didn’t have a Ravenclaw to bring along on this trip, we really weren’t missing one. We are quite possibly the best traveling companions. Cristina is the planner, the one who keeps us organized and on schedule. I’m the one who makes sure we veer off schedule every once in a while and allows the wind to blow us here and there. And Erin steadies the two of our opposing forces. We are stronger together and it made for the most delightful day!

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Check out our Harry Potter adventures on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtag #SlytherGryffinPuff

Disney Day Ladies Weekend #DisneyDarlings blog post

Lizzie, Cristina and Erin Disney Bounding Share Your Ears Disney blog

Saturday, we were off to the other magical place in Florida…the most magical place in all the land (sorry Harry, the House of Mouse wins!) Disney World!! We had lofty goals and were going to attempt all four parks! We made it to everything we wanted to do at Hollywood Studios and Magic Kingdom and ended up in Epcot for dinner and fireworks. (Sadly Animal Kingdom had to be sacrificed for the greater good.) The best part of all is that months ago we decided to Disney Bound for our magical day. And we had a blast!

I was Rapunzel.

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Erin was Belle.

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And Cristina was Snow White.

(Cristina is a crafty princess who managed not to get her individual princess portrait taken….. clearly a Slytherin!)

Disney Day Ladies Weekend Disney Bounding blog post

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For more from these gorgeous creatures who I am lucky enough to call friends, go check out their blogs. Yep…they’re both bloggers. Imagine that!

The Ever Changing Us 

The Littlest Fowler

Also make sure you are following all three of us on Instagram, but only if you love pictures of happy, adorable people who love life and each other! #LadiesWeekend2016

Cristina

Erin

Lizzie

The weekend may be over, but these friendships will last forever!! Next year we are deciding between New Orleans and Las Vegas and 2018 will see us in London for the most epic #SlytherGryffinPuff expedition ever imagined.

Ladies Weekend at Walt Disney World Disney Bounding blog post

So keep a weather eye on the horizon for more us!

#NerdsLove

February is the month of love. Which often illicits a “Yuck” and an eye roll from me. Instead of my usual “down with love” attitude, I decided instead to share the things I love with my instapeeps. And the best part is that a bunch of you joined my challenge and shared the things you loved with me! Check out the hashtag #NerdsLove for more from everyone and each individual hashtag below for more specific expressions of love.

Me? I love it all! @NerdintheSand
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#NerdsLoveStarWars
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#NerdsLoveLaughing
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#NerdsloveGaming
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#NerdsloveAnimals
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#NerdsLoveZombies
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#NerdsloveJaneAusten
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#NerdsloveSports
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#NerdsloveStarTrek
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#NerdsLovePizza
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#NerdsLoveFashion
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#NerdsloveBuffy
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#NerdsloveDeadpool
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#NerdsloveMarvel
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#NerdsloveLOVE
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#NerdslovePresidents
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#NerdsloveFitness
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#NerdsloveConventions
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#NerdsloveDancing
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#NerdsloveTravel
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#NerdsloveSand
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#NerdsloveFamily
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#NerdsloveMondays
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#NerdsloveSocial
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#NerdsloveKiddos
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#NerdsloveFriends
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#NerdsloveHarryPotter
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#NerdsloveDisney
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#NerdsloveMusic
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#NerdsloveSpring
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It’s never too late to share what you love. The hashtag #Nerdslove is not going anywhere! Do you love something? Share it!
We’re all nerdy for something.

44 Reasons Why It Is Good To Be a Nerd

It is so darn good to be a nerd right now. And if you don’t consider yourself a nerd, let me go ahead and give you your very own, personal invitation. It is never too late to join our tribe.
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We may come off a little strong at first, but we love when people come to the Dark Side (or the Light, if you’re into that sort of thing.) Don’t mistake our passion and zeal for anything other than just that.

Sure…there are trolls. But trust me when I say, we take care of our own! Here are 44 reasons why right now is the time to join us…and together we can rule the fandom!!!
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1. STAR WARS EPISODE VII: THE FORCE AWAKENS (tickets have been purchased!! Internets have been broken. This is the big leagues.)
2. Star Wars Episode VIII (ok we don’t know what it’s called yet, but the script is written and the funds are already designated!)
3. Star Wars Episode IX (we don’t even know who’s directing this one, but trust us…we’ll be there!)
4. Star Wars: Rogue One
5. Rumors of a young Han Solo film (rumors are our bread and butter. Get used to it.)
6.Star Wars Rebels (It’s only on season 2, plenty of time to catch up!)
7. Anything else Star Wars that is in the Disney pipeline. (If you aren’t sensing a trend then there may not be hope for your induction into our society.)
8. Ok…we do like some other things too…try Star Trek (anything with Star in it makes the short list!)
9.New Star Trek TV show in the works
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10. Any and all things Marvel (ie: the next 14 items on the list)
11. Marvel’s Jessica Jones (this one premiers in 7 days so you better catch up and watch all of Daredevil on Netflix stat!)
12. Marvel’s Captain America Civil War (trailer will be dropping very soon.)
13. Marvel’s Doctor Strange
14. Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy 2
15. Marvel’s Spider-Man
16. Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok
17. Marvel’s Black Panther
18. Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War Part 1
19. Marvel’s Ant Man and the Wasp
20. Marvel’s Captain Marvel
21. Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War Part 2
22. Marvel’s Agents of Shield (currently in season 3 on ABC)
23. Marvel’s Agent Carter (season 2 starts in January)
24. Marvel’s Luke Cage and Iron Fist (both coming to Netflix along with season 2 of Daredevil.)
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25. DC has a lot of exciting things coming to our eyeballs soon as well (they just haven’t all earned their own number slot in this nerd’s estimation, but some are worthy like…)
26. DC’s Suicide Squad
27. DC’s Justice League
28. DC’s Arrow (currently in season 3 on The CW)
29. DC’s The Flash (currently in season 2 also on The CW)
30. DC’s Supergirl (kicking major butt in it’s first season on CBS)
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31. The Walking Dead
32. Once Upon a Time
33. Doctor Who
34. Game of Thrones
35. More Jurassic Park
36. Word of more Indiana Jones is in the ether.
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37. A little thing called Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (translation: more Harry Potter)
38. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (translation: even more Harry Potter)
39. Netflix and Hulu are making it easier than ever to catch up on your nerd. In my day you had to wait for DVD sets to be released and either rent from Blockbuster (yeah that was a thing) or just spend the $29.99 to own it. You’ve got no excuses anymore! LOST, Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Heroes, Supernatural, X-Files they can all be yours!)
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40. Speaking of The X-Files, you better get started cause new X-Files is coming our way in January. Jump on it and believe!
41. Star Wars Battlefront (if you aren’t a gamer yet, why not let Battlefront pull you in!)
42. Any and all things Disney (they make things other than Star Wars and Marvel movies as well. I know…crazy!)
43. Oh, speaking of Star Wars…there is so much amazing expanded universe literature coming out. (Start reading! Reading is cool! There’s a lot to catch up on!)
44. There are plenty of other awesomely nerdy things coming out before and after and in between all that’s listed above. But I’m trying to think past December 17th, 2015 and I’m finding it very hard to do.

Well…you have a lot of homework to do so you better get started now. See you on the other side where I’ll be waiting with your Nerd membership card*. We will engage in an obligatory lightsaber battle and a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock. It’s what we do!

*Membership card not guaranteed.

My New Favorite Words…

I’d been begging D and H for weeks, to let me read Harry Potter to them. They hemmed. They hawed. They’d heard of Harry Potter, of course. Who hasn’t! But they just weren’t exactly eager to sit still for a chapter a night. However I persisted saying, “You’re gonna love it…I promise!”
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One night they finally relented and allowed me to read one chapter. Just one chapter. Which they fell asleep to. The next night they let me read another chapter and again…they fell asleep.
I was starting to despair. What if they didn’t like it? What if Chapter 2 was as far as we’d ever get? What if they’d never know the magic and wonders waiting for them at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry???
(First world problem…I know!)

But see, one of the great joys of nerdom is sharing favorite fandoms with the next generation. It’s the closest we can get to reading a favorite book or watching a favorite movie all over again, with fresh eyes. The kids had adored Back to the Future, were properly obsessed with all things Star Wars. But at 9 years old, they were the perfect age for Harry’s adventures! I didn’t want to miss this chance to introduce them to J.K.Rowling’s masterpiece.

But I repeat… they weren’t having any of it. Until one morning…right around chapter 5… I came downstairs, as usual. I grabbed my big cup of tea, asked the kids how they slept and what they wanted for breakfast, when D said these musical, magical, new favorite words….
“Lizzie, can we start reading more Harry Potter everyday?”
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I almost dropped my teacup out of pure shock and joy.

“Really?” I said hopefully.
“Yeah!” he said. “Could we even start now? And read this morning before school?”

I’m pretty sure my body did an involuntary, celebratory jig. Best…words…ever spoken by a 9 year old boy to me!!

They’re both hooked (D more than H, but I’ll take what I can get! The girl will get it soon!) They’re waiting with baited breath as we read chapter to chapter. They already love Hagrid, are intrigued by Harry and can’t wait to hear more about Hogwarts. D even said to me,

” Lizzie, you do really good voices. But if you need a goblin voice, I can do it. Cause I’m really good at minion impressions.”

Life is good. The torch is passed and I’m a happy little nerd!!

5 Fandom Friday

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Favorite Things about Halloween

I love Halloween!! What’s not to love?? There’s no better prompt than that for the season of ghouls and goblins! Thanks to The Nerdy Girlie and Super Space Chick for their weekly blogger link up! It’s a favorite part of my Fridays!!

#1: Costumes
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If you’ve been following me for any stretch of time, you’ll know how much I love a good costume. Or costume hair or costume make-up. Dressing up is just so much fun. And an entire day dedicated to the pursuit of the pretend…sign me up! In fact my whole family loves dressing up so much, we decided one costumed holiday wasn’t enough. So now we do it for Christmas too. Why not extend the joy!! (Stay tuned for more about this year’s family Star Trek themed Christmas adventure.)

#2: CANDY
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I have a major sweet tooth. I love Skittles and Starburst and 3 Musketeers bars and chocolate and caramel and sugary sweet substances of all kind! Except those non-distinct orange and black wrapper candies that always end up at the bottom of the candy bucket. The ones you try and convince your younger siblings are the best candies ever invented. (Was that only me??) I don’t eat much candy these days…my dentist would not approve. But I still enjoy the occasional piece of candy. Halloween is the perfect season for a little splurging.

#3: Spooky Decorations
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I need to clarify. I love walking around neighborhoods looking at spooky house decorations. See that waving skeleton up there…that’s as spooky as I can take! I do not enjoy haunted houses and I really hate being scared! Scary movies? Nope. Haunted insane asylum? I steer clear. Creepy abandoned mansion? Never please!
But jolly pumpkins and happy, waving skeletons…yes, I will enjoy that. Thanks you!

#4: Trick or Treaters
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When I was a kid, my great joy of Halloween was going Trick or Treating around the neighborhood with my brother and our little cousin. We lived in a great neighborhood too. One where the street would turn into a block party and where most of the houses gave out full-sized candy bars. One neighbor even baked these amazing oatmeal cookies that we looked forward to every year. Nowadays, I love to stay home with a giant bowl of candy and watch the tiny Trick or Treaters come ask me for candy (just the minis, I’m not made of money!) Tiny Iron Men and adorable Cinderellas. Homemade ghosts and store bought witches. I guess when I was little, I never imagined that it could be fun to be on the other side of the door on Halloween night.

#5: The Inevitable Harry Potter Marathon
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Once a year I dive head first into the wonderful world of Harry Potter. Tis the season for Hogwarts adventures. Witches, wizards, goblins, dementors, etc. Harry Potter was practically made to be enjoyed around Halloween. Makes sense that ABC Family would have their Harry Potter marathon at this time! I look forward to it every year. Sure…i own all the movies. Sure…i can watch them whenever I want. But I absolutely still watch them on ABC Family everytime they’re on!
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(Here’s hoping #Freeform keeps the Harry Potter marathon alive!!)

What are your favorite things about Halloween? Share on social with the hashtag #5Fandom

Check out these other delightfully nerdy bloggers and what they love about Halloween:

The Nerdy Girlie
Super Space Chick
Melificent
The Geeky Burrow
Distracted Blogger
Meghan Sara
Geeky Loot
Cateaclysmic
Dezpresso
Keysmash Blog

5 Fandom Friday

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Favorite Fictional Teachers

#1 – Mr. Feeny

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This one is a no brainer. Growing up there was one teacher we all wanted to have and that was Feeeeeeny! Fee-hee-hee-heeeny! He cared about his students with crucial life lessons and was always there when they needed him. Always! From elementary school through college. Now that’s dedication!

#2 – Minerva McGonagall

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Any good teacher uses a mixture of love and tough love to teach. Professor McGonagall is the perfect example of this. She genuinely cares about all her students and looks the other way if the situation calls for it. And sure, you’re not supposed to play favorites, but Minerva always had a soft spot for the boy who lived and his two best friends. In the final film of the franchise, it’s that moment when Minerva McGonagall calls for everyone to defend Hogwarts that makes me cry every time! I always wished to go to magical school and be taught be her!

#3 – John Keating

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Good teachers teach. Great teachers inspire! And there are few fictional teachers as downright inspiring as Robin William’s John Keating from Dead Poets’ Society. ‘O Captain, My Captain’ I’d stand on my desk and follow you anywhere!

#4 – Mr. Holland

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As a musician, I always had a special place in my heart for Mr. Holland, played by Richard Dreyfuss in the movie Mr. Holland’s Opus. Sure Mr. Holland wasn’t perfect. There was that whole, almost had an affaor with a student thing. But hey, even teachers aren’t perfect. This film had poignant life lessons and a truly delicious soundtrack. Win, win!

#5 – Corey Matthews

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Yes, the same Corey Matthews from the beloved 90’s TGIF sitcom, Boy Meets World. Corey and Topanga are back with two adorable kids of their own and it’s their daughter Riley Matthews that’s learning about the world now. And just like Feeny before him, Corey has become the kid’s teacher, spirit guide and emotional counselor. Following them from elementary school into middle school (and here’s hoping he continues through college just like Feeny.) That’s not the only similarity to my #1 favorite fictional teacher! It seems like Corey really was paying attention in class all those years because he makes an excellent teacher and fans of Boy Meets World will love where they take these characters. (Plus Shawn comes back!!! And Eric and Angela and Mr. and Mrs. Matthews and yes…even Feeny returns a couple times.) It’s definitely a must watch!!

Honorable Mentions
I actually have a lot of teachers in my family. My mom is a preschool director. Dad teaches middle school (bless his heart.) Granny was an art teacher. Grandma was a teacher too. One of my best friends is a damn fine high school teacher. If one of them had been my teacher when I was a kid (obviously my parents taught me..but you know what I mean) then maybe I would have been a better student than I was.

Who do you wish had taught your classes? Or is there a real teacher who inspired you?