Sponsored Post Learn from the experts: Create a successful blog with our brand new courseThe WordPress.com Blog

Are you new to blogging, and do you want step-by-step guidance on how to publish and grow your blog? Learn more about our new Blogging for Beginners course and get 50% off through December 10th.

WordPress.com is excited to announce our newest offering: a course just for beginning bloggers where you’ll learn everything you need to know about blogging from the most trusted experts in the industry. We have helped millions of blogs get up and running, we know what works, and we want you to to know everything we know. This course provides all the fundamental skills and inspiration you need to get your blog started, an interactive community forum, and content updated annually.

The Bookstore Cats

I was a-walking past the bookstore,

And what did I see?

Three black cats in the window

Were staring at me.

So I opened the brown oak door

To the light tinkling of a bell

And said “Hello there!”

To the young girl upon the floor.

She was a-reading a childrens’ book.

So I peered a bit closer,

With large green eyes

Magnified by thick, blurry lenses.

She rudely slammed the book shut,

And ran straight to the back.

“Now I’m all alone

With these hideous cats

That stare endlessly at me,”

I thought as I wandered

Into Aisle Three.

Then the unthinkable happened:

Every cat ran towards me

And with yowls, hisses and claws,

The creatures Ferociously Jumped Upon My Back.

I started with a-fright

And knocked every book in Aisle Three

Down to the black and white checkered floor.

After this, I took flight straight out the door

And never visited that cat-infested bookstore


6 Inspiring Reasons to Read the Harry Potter Series

One series of books adults and children often enjoy rereading over and over is Harry Potter. In fact, it’s more than a story, it’s an exciting experience full of adventure and morals. This is especially true if you love magical creatures, quirky characters and childlike humor. Consider a few reasons why you might want to try reading a Harry Potter book or the whole series.

Improve Your Health and Well-Being

If you have anxiety or depression, or just need some mental stimulation, Harry Potter books can help you improve your health and well-being. For instance, immersing yourself in a magical world filled with magic wands, puzzles, ghosts and dragons can help you forget about your worries.

Become Immersed in a Humorous Story

In contrast to the movies, the Harry Potter books may be more humorous. For one, the illustrations in the book are cartoony. These details only add to the already exaggerated nature of meek house-elves like Dobby, Ron Weasley’s rat Scabbers and complicated Quidditch tournaments. In addition to this, in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, the Dursleys are portrayed in a way that makes them appear highly uneducated yet funny. This is very true when Dudley tries to fool Harry, but only ends up being fooled by him.

Escape to an Imaginative Place

Whether you get a thrill from escaping to Hogwarts or would rather just imagine filling your mouth with Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans, Harry Potter’s adventures can provide and escape from reality. By reading a book, you can go far without leaving the comfort of your home. Another bonus is you can find free books at your local library or for a reasonable sale online.

Meet Engaging Characters

Some characters worthy of note include Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Rubeus Hagrid, Professor Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall, Professor Severus Snape, Harry Potter and others. Each character has his or her own personality that truly stands out on their own. Firstly, consider Ron Weasley with his bright red hair, boyish grin and big heart. In contrast, Draco Malfoy has white blond hair, a sneer and a cold heart. Besides this,he’s often accompanied by his fellow bully friends. As a trio, they enjoy tormenting Ron and his friends Harry and Hermione.

Encounter Magical Creatures

When you live near a Forbidden Forest, you can almost guarantee that a magical creature is going to be lurking around somewhere close by. Add in the boy with the lightning scar who has a knack for meeting troublemakers, and you’ll be on your way to encountering creatures you might not regret knowing. Luckily, Harry Potter never allows his problems to defeat him or those around him.

Learn a Lesson or Two

Although the Harry Potter books may be childish, you can actually learn lessons from reading the books. For example, you might find yourself learning the value of friendship, creativity and selflessness. This can make the story matter in an unexpected but profound way.

Plenty of people would agree that the Harry Potter books are worth getting immersed in over and over again. Besides this, each time you feel like you’ve had too much reality, you can open a book to escape your troubles. Feel like a child again, or if you are one, you likely won’t be disappointed either.

11 Fantastic Purple Hues

Lavender flowers are adorned with soft pastel petals,

V is for shy violet, a truly lovely shade,

Periwinkle is a lot like the word ‘twinkle’.

Boysenberry sounds cheery and o-so-merry!

Amethyst sparkles for its dazzling display,

Plum for magical fairies dancing a ballet,

Jam paints a pretty splotch of color on bread,

Orchids can be eerie and lounge over your head.

Magenta is sort of pink, lively and gay.

Grape is delicious and never seems to fade.

Purple, like a portrait, a perfect hue touched with red.

Be Healthier and Happier: 10 Ways to Gain Peace of Mind

When you’re stuck in a negative mindset, gaining peace of mind can be a challenge. For one, if life is meaningless, it can seem as though there’s no reason to live at all. Instead of allowing negativity to get the best of you, make every effort to be positive again. Here are some ideas on how to gain peace of mind.

Do Arts & Crafts

Getting creative can stimulate the imagination, boost positivity and help you forget about any real life problems you may face. Being a professional artist isn’t necessary to create admirable artwork. In fact, the best reason to do arts & crafts is to enjoy the process. A few ideas to try out include painting a colorful flower, drawing with markers, coloring in a coloring book, making a pencil box, crocheting a blanket and others.

Eat Healthy Foods

When you’re feeling down, you might be tempted to consume junk food such as hamburgers, hot dogs or anything that may be available. Rather than make yourself feel sick to your stomach, make smarter choices. For example, pick up a handful of blueberries, or make yourself a bowl of healthy cereal.

Be Grateful for Something

The last thing you probably want to do is be grateful when you lack peace of mind. The problem with this is that ungratefulness only tends to lead to more negativity. And negativity can lead to health problems. For this reason, it’s vital to take care of yourself. You can try writing what you’re grateful for in a daily journal. This could be your pet, grandmother, nature or anything you choose.

Spend Time in Nature

If you’ve been stuck in the house for an excessive amount of time, you should probably head outdoors. This will allow you to breathe in fresh oxygen, and feel healthier and happier. While you’re outside, you can draw objects found in nature, eat a healthy snack, watch birds or go for a walk.

Get Active

Doing unhealthy activities like watching television or eating potato chips for an hour can give you too much time to dwell. In order to avoid getting stuck in a negative mindset, get up and do something. You can do some light exercise, do some stretches, go for a jog, play an outdoor game or something else you enjoy.

Write in a Journal

Since your journal belongs to you, you can write anything you desire in it. For instance, write a poem, create an interesting story or draw pictures. As you do this, one goal should be to express your feelings in a healthy manner with creativity. You can even jot down your feelings as they arise. This can be helpful in letting out any negative emotions you may hold inside.

Do Some Reading

Reading can help you ignore reality and focus on the story at hand. You can read whatever holds your attention and inspires you to gain your positive mindset back. If you need peace of mind, it can be helpful to read a book that inspires peace. Some examples are The Fellowship of the Ring or The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling or Redwall by Brian Jacques, among others.

Try Spirituality

If you can’t find peace of mind, you might have feelings of hostility, extreme sadness or other unwanted emotions. In this instance, spirituality can be beneficial to your health and well-being because it can give you something to believe in. You can say a prayer to yourself, meditate for a time or do basic yoga poses. Being more spiritual can also change your life in profound ways. For one thing, you can incorporate it into your lifestyle by doing spiritual techniques instead of drinking, smoking, overeating or doing drugs.

Socialize More Often

While being alone has plenty of benefits, isolation can cause depression, anxiousness or even suicidal thoughts. For this reason, socializing a bit more can motivate you to get back into a positive mindset. You could interact with others on social media, but talking to people in person is the healthiest way to get back on track .

Seek Help

If things are so bad that nothing seems to work, consider speaking to a therapist you can trust. You can talk to someone online or make an appointment in your area. Another idea is to join a support group. Being part of a group of people who’ve experienced similar circumstances to you can make you feel understood and cared for.

Although life can be extremely challenging at times, it’s important to remain strong. No matter how badly others may treat you, you deserve to love yourself. And having self-love makes it easier to care about others.

Spreading Happiness to Bullies

I spread happiness and joy

To this big, wide world.

And almost no matter what I do,

I get stomped upon by bullies.

In fact, the world seems full of oppressors.

But does anyone deserve this abuse?

Obviously not,

Yet, people still suffer…

So I stand up for my beliefs,

But, most people don’t care enough

To do the right thing.

Why? I ask myself

Every sleepless night.

Because some people just don’t change…

Yet, I have to wonder:

Why am I spreading happiness to bullies?

Maybe because they’re the ones

Who need it the most.

8 Healthy Ways to Forget About Your Problems

When you have a problem, it can be difficult to forget about it, especially if it grows bigger or doesn’t seem to end. For example, maybe bullies just won’t quit bothering you, or you have mental health issues or a physical disability. No matter what your problem may be, there are ways to improve it in a healthy manner.

Read a Book

One of the best ways to forget about the struggles you face is to get involved in something else. Reading is a smart way to allow positive images to take the place of the negative thoughts in your head. To understand what this means, imagine what happens to your thought process when you read a book that stirs your imagination such as Alice in Wonderland, The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings. Next time you’re in a room with someone you don’t get along with or in the waiting room at a doctor’s appointment, try reading a book that holds your attention.

Practice Self-Care

Sometimes the best way to avoid negativity is to take care of your body, mind and spirit. Practicing self-care on a daily basis can make you healthier and happier. You can take a relaxing bath using therapeutic all natural soaps, eat healthy meals with fresh ingredients, light a naturally scented candle, use essential oils to soothe the soul or something else.

Be More Spiritual

Spiritual techniques such as yoga and meditation can help you control your emotions better, calm anxiety, ease depression and more. Take a few minutes in the morning or before bedtime to do basic yoga poses or meditate. As you do spiritual techniques and after you’re done, try paying attention to how your body, mind and spirit are affected, so you understand how your health and well-being are improving. In addition to this, spirituality can give you a sense of purpose and meaning in your daily life.

Appreciate Nature

Being grateful for nature can give you a sense of inner peace. You can go for a walk outside in the morning to breathe some fresh air. Other ideas include planting a native garden, drawing objects found in nature or riding a bike, among others. You can also do yoga poses or meditation outdoors. Just grab a yoga mat, and find a quiet spot to relax.

Volunteer for a Worthy Cause

Volunteering allows you to be selfless by focusing on the problems of others. This means it’s easier to forget about yourself and your own problems. Giving to those less fortunate can help you gain meaning and purpose. A few opportunities you might enjoy are walking dogs at a rescue shelter, making cards for kids with cancer, writing blog articles from home, planting trees and others.

Do a Good Deed

Doing something special for someone else can make you feel better about yourself. For one, try leaving a positive note in a library book. You can draw a simple picture with a happy face, or write out a positive quote that shows someone in this world cares. Another way to do a good deed is to defend loved ones or even strangers from being bullied. Instead of letting them get beaten down emotionally or physically, stand up to bullies.

Keep a Journal

Whenever a problem threatens to consume you, write down your personal thoughts on a piece of paper. After this, you can tear it up so no one sees it. You can write it out every day or whenever you feel the need to release your emotions. Additionally, writing can be helpful in piecing your thoughts together and releasing tension in the body.

Do Some Work

When you allow your mind to wander due to laziness or negativity, you probably start to dwell on any problems you may have. Rather than let these consume you, do some work. You can work harder at your day job, do household chores such as washing dishes or find other work to involve yourself in. Work can exercise your brain, improve your health and well-being, and keep you physically fit, among other things. You can work hard or do it for a few minutes at a time.

Although everyone will always have problems, try to see the bright side of these. For instance, consider how they can make you a better person, and improve your quality of life. In fact, you can view your problems as challenges you’ll keep facing throughout your life that will only make you stronger.

14 Popular Cartoon Characters to Inspire You

Possibly one of the most difficult tasks is figuring out who the best cartoon characters are, especially since there are so many great ones. Each one has his or her own unique personality traits which simply can’t be ignored. Here are a few cartoon characters that tend to stand out from the rest.

Bugs Bunny

As the ultimate rabbit trickster, Bugs Bunny knows how to fool nearly everyone he meets. This includes Elmer Fudd, Daffy Duck, Wile E. Coyote and more. Besides this, he’s the funniest hare around and has the ability to make almost anyone laugh out loud whenever they see his clever antics.

SpongeBob Squarepants

Although SpongeBob may be the silliest sea sponge ever, perhaps this is what makes him truly unique. Together, SpongeBob and his best friend Patrick Star (a dimwitted starfish) are the biggest goofballs you’ll ever see. Further, being a fry cook at the Krusty Krab is anything but humdrum as SpongeBob is anything but an ordinary sea sponge.

Snoopy and Charlie Brown

At first glance, Charlie Brown may seem rather dull. But, someone who doesn’t know him would probably never guess that this is exactly what makes him so special. Being bullied on a regular basis contributes to Charlie Brown’s plain but lovable personality to make him who he is. Add Snoopy, his adorable pet beagle, to the mix and you have two popular cartoon characters almost no one could forget.

Yogi Bear

Being a bear doesn’t stop Yogi Bear from stealing picnic baskets whenever Ranger Smith isn’t looking. Yogi’s girlfriend Cindy Bear is pretty, smart and everything he could ever dream of. And Boo-Boo, the short bear with the blue bowtie, has enough personality to be Yogi’s constant companion and steal the show each time he’s on.

Winnie the Pooh

The Hundred Acre Wood is the ideal place for Winnie the Pooh and friends to reside. In fact, the trees are large enough for Rabbit, Owl and almost anyone else to dwell in luxury. In addition to this, Christopher Robin may only appear rarely, but this doesn’t seem to make his supporting role any less important to the show.

Wile E. Coyote

Chasing after the Road Runner never seems to get old if you’re Wile E. Coyote. He makes up endless plans and sets complicated traps only to see them backfire in his stunned face. Although it’s obvious he has it coming every time, you can’t help but see the humor in each situation. Perhaps Wile E. Coyote will never catch the Road Runner, and of course, this is the way it should be.


Appearing in the Sunday comics, films, comic books and his own animated television series has only made Garfield into the classic he deserves to be. He’s one of the most popular characters on earth and his legendary nature never seems to fade. And don’t forget Odie, Jon Arbuckle, Nermal and the rest of the gang.

Shaggy Rogers and Scooby Doo

Sniffing out mysteries is Scooby Doo’s strong suit in the highly popular and hilarious animated television show Scooby Doo, Where Are You! Shaggy is his bosom buddy and as cowards they can’t completely get along without each other. Velma, Daphne and Fred make the group a cohesive unit as they solve mysteries, meet interesting characters and make audiences everywhere laugh out loud.

Mickey Mouse

Wherever Mickey Mouse goes, he seems to find adventure, mayhem and mystery. His love interest, Minnie, is his one and only true love while Pluto, the adorable yellow orange dog, is Mickey’s pet. Goofy, Donald and the other members of the cartoon cast help populate Mickey’s perfectly catastrophic world.


Being the Man of Steel does make you more special than everyone else. This is especially true when you have superhuman strength, the power of flight, cold breath, heat vision, x-ray vision, nigh-invulnerability, enhanced hearing and superspeed. As Superman isn’t all-powerful, he’s still worthy of the highest admiration. But, the real question may be how does he manage to hide his identity behind the disguise of simpleton and journalist Clark Kent?


In Batman: The Animated Series, Batman expresses his dark mood while in the 1960s “Batman” show, sometimes moody Bruce Wayne stars a lighter action series. No matter what, die-hard Batman fans know he’ll always win in the end against villains such as Joker, Catwoman, Penguin, Riddler and others.

Homer Simpson

Homer Simpson is the doting father of Lisa, Bart and Maggie and loving husband of Marge. The yellow cartoon family resides in Springfield and endures plenty of trouble with a big heap of humor. For instance, Bart is possibly the most mischievous son anyone could have and the bane of Homer’s existence. Despite the popularity of the main characters the others only add to the excitement. Mr. Burns, Ned Flanders, Principal Skinner and more provide hilarity and laugh out loud fun.

Other cartoon characters of note are Daffy Duck, the Road Runner, Fred Flinstone, George Jetson, Daria Morgendorffer, Patrick Star, Popeye, Tigger and Bart Simpson. These and others are certainly deserving of the fame and fortune they’ve received throughout their lives. After all, cartoons provide the old and young with an escape from reality into a world of humor and imagination.