Things have been busy at xtra xtra as summer gets underway! We’ve had lots of new school announcements, along with dozens of professional achievements, posted to the site, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg! Below you’ll find a few of the announcements that have been catching people’s attention in recent weeks. Click the images to view the full milestone, and remember that you can “Like” a post or add a comment to the conversation.
Find more great announcements like these at xtraxtra.com, and remember that you can post your own stories and milestones for free, too!
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We’ve played the birthday match-up game in the past, so we figured it was time for another round now that summer is getting underway. Lots of famous faces are celebrating birthdays today. See if you can match the celebrity to his or her hometowns.
1. Selma Blair—She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Michigan before making her career in film and television. This popular actress was born in 1973.
2. Bob Fosse—The revolutionary actor, choreographer, and director was born in 1927. He won an Oscar for directing Cabaret and multiple Tony awards for shows like Chicago and Sweet Charity.
3. June Carter Cash—This country music star won countless awards for both her solo work and performances with her husband, Johnny Cash. She was born in 1929.
4. Wilma Rudolph—Born in 1940 and considered the fastest woman in the world during the 1960s, this civil rights figure and Olympic athlete won multiple gold medals.
5. Randy Jackson—This singer, producer, and television personality was born in 1956. His most popular programs, American Idol and America’s Best Dance Crew, continue to hold audience’s attention.
6. Clarence Thomas—This Supreme Court justice sits on the bench today, making him the second African American to preside in America’s highest court. He was born in 1948.
7. Joss Whedon—He was born in 1964 and went on to create popular series like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, and Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog.
8. Francis McDormand—This Tony and Oscar-winning actress was born in 1957. She is a frequent player in the Coen Brothers films—perhaps because she has been married to Joel Coen since 1984!
9. Jason Mraz—This popular singer-songwriter was born in 1977. Mraz’s unique style mixes rock, soul, reggae, and folk music.
a. Baton Rouge, LA
c. Southfield, MI
d. New York City, NY
e. Mechanicsville, VA
f. Pin Point, GA
g. Clarksville, TN
h. Hiltons, VA
i. Chicago, IL
See how many you can match up (find the answer key is below), and don’t forget to celebrate your friends’ birthdays with xtraxtra.com. You can create a free birthday announcement to show them just how much you care on their special day!
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With all the milestones posted on our site there are bound to be some celebrations. Here are some tips to help you brighten up your party space.
Color is a powerful thing. Used correctly color can create a personality and completely change the atmosphere of a room. If your stumped on which colors to use a good place to start is the basic color wheel.
Complementary colors are opposite each other on the color wheel.
Split Complementary are made of a color and the two colors touching its complement
Analogous are colors found next to each other
Triadic are colors that are evenly spaced apart on the wheel
Once you decide on your basic color combination you may want to experiment with different variations of each color.
- Adding white to your colors creates light pastel tones. Pastels tend to soften the room making it feel more relaxed.
- Choosing bright vibrant colors will make your decorations pop giving the room lots of energy.
- Including black or white with your scheme can give it a crisp feel.
- Neutral tones like brown or tan can soften the contrast between your bright colors.
Hopefully this little guide helped to get your ideas flowing. Share your decoration success/failure stories in the comment section below!
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It’s Father’s Day! Today we’re honoring dads everywhere for their passion, enthusiasm, and hard work. It’s not easy to be a dad, but it’s a job that certainly deserves thanks and a hug from time to time. Take advantage of this day to call your dad and show your appreciation. Take him out for lunch, go play a round of golf, or just pay a visit to say hello. It’s a day to show how much you care, and it’s always a milestone worth celebrating.
With dads in mind, we asked our friends and followers to share their favorite TV dads. We had lots of replies, with a few names popping up more than once. Take a look at the list below, and share your favorite TV dads in a comment!
- Chelsea: Sandy Cohen (The OC), Eric Taylor (Friday Night Lights), and Phil Dunphy (Modern Family)
- Jenny: Homer Simpson (The Simpsons) and Cliff Huxtable (The Cosby Show)
- Cooley: Jack Bristow (Alias) and Keith Mars (Veronica Mars)
- Dani: Eric Taylor (Friday Night Lights)
- Jason: I like Ed O’Neill on both Modern Family (Jay Pritchett) and Married…With Children (Al Bundy)
- Katy: Max Keenan (Bones), Burt Hummel (Glee), and Jack Bristow (Alias)
- Steph: Danny Tanner (Full House) for his clipboards of fun and George Bluth Senior (Arrested Development) for teaching me to always leave a note!
- Katie: Max (United States of Tara), Michael Bluth (Arrested Development), and Martin Crane (Frasier)
- Bonnie: Eric Taylor (Friday Night Lights)
- Caitlin: Andy Taylor (The Andy Griffith Show)—“When a man carries a gun all the time, the respect he thinks he’s getting might really be fear. So I don’t carry a gun because I don’t want the people of Mayberry to fear a gun. I’d rather they respect me.”
- Julie: Danny Tanner (Full House)
- Jared: Al Bundy (Married…With Children)
- Lou: Russell Lawrence (Gidget) and Tom Corbett (The Courtship of Eddie’s Father)
- Lois: Al Bundy (Married…With Children)
- Adam: Jack Arnold (The Wonder Years), Marty Crane (Frasier), and Jed Barlett (The West Wing)
- Michael: Tom Corbett (The Courtship of Eddie’s Father)
- Scott: Eric Taylor (Friday Night Lights)–Scott argues, “How can you not go with this?”
- Clay: Andy Taylor (The Andy Griffith Show)
- Beth: Phil Dunphy (Modern Family)
- Molly: Burt Hummel (Glee) and Jeb Bartlett (The West Wing)
- Chris: Eric Taylor (Friday Night Lights) and Walter White (Breaking Bad)
- Chiari: Danny Tanner (Full House) and Dan Connor (“Roseanne”)
- Mandy: Eric Taylor (Friday Night Lights)
You can also show Dad how much you care by creating a holiday announcement at xtraxtra.com in his honor! Celebrate his achievements, post a photo, and tag it to your town. It’s a great free way to tell the community just how much your dad means to you!
- Just for Fun
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For the first time in almost forty years, the Boston Bruins have won the 2011 Stanley Cup after seven tough games against the Vancouver Canucks. Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas was named MVP of the playoffs last night, and the game clinched the second-best television rating in the last thirty-seven years of playoff games.
This concludes a milestone-packed decade for Boston fans. In the last ten years, the New England Patriots have won three Super Bowls, the Red Sox have seized two World Series titles, and the Boston Celtics have won an NBA Championship. Last night’s achievement from the Bruins rounds out the decade nicely by giving each of New England’s big teams a victory worth celebrating.
We join the rest of Boston in celebrating this extraordinary victory by one of our favorite teams. We’re especially excited to hear that a parade will be held on Saturday to welcome back the team and honor this milestone. If you’re in the area, make sure you down to Boston and join in the celebration, and remember to share your parade pictures with the rest of the community at xtraxtra.com!
- Community Focus
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There has been a recent wave of hacking attacks on websites around the world. Sony had their gaming systems hacked, military emails hosted by Gmail were intercepted, and Citibank and Lockheed Martin both fell victim to cyberattacks. As the IMF and Nintendo UK continue to fight off hackers, the rest of us are all starting to wonder if we might be next!
You might be wondering if your online accounts and profiles are vulnerable, but there are a few quick tips that can fortify your online presence and deter hacker attacks. We’ve offered password tips in the past, but here are a few more ideas to keep in mind as you keep your information safe from internet hackers, crackers, and attackers.
- Change Your Passwords Often—If you created an account three years ago, or even three months ago, it’s time to change the password. Create a schedule to change your password on a regular basis so you can stay one step ahead of those who would steal your information!
- Update Your Security Questions—You answer security questions like “What high school did you attend?” or “What’s your mother’s maiden name?” to protect your accounts, but sometimes even that information can get out. A former credit card hacker is now offering advice on how to protect your identity, and he suggests using fake answers to the questions (but make sure you can remember the ones you pick!). You could also spell the answer backwards, or substitute other characters for the letters so it is harder to crack (i.e. “B0st0n” instead of “Boston”).
- Be Selective–Don’t provide your personal information and credit card number to just any site. If prompted to have a site save your information for later, say no. If someone is able to break into your account, the last thing you want is for them to have your credit card information, too!
If you have any tips and ideas of your own, share them in a comment below. Remember you can update your xtra xtra account password by clicking “My Account” at the top of the page; you can then change your password by clicking “Change Password.”
Til next time,
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Our newest intern, Shikha Raturi, recently graduated from UMass Boston with her Masters degree. We asked her to share her experience in going through one of life’s biggest milestones–commencement!
Many of our friends are going through the excitement of graduating, and that is certainly an important milestone. It’s the end of an important chapter in life and beginning of a new one. That’s always little scary and anxiety provoking since students look forward to graduation from the time they start school. Sometimes graduation doesn’t bring the sense of relief students expected. Some students are excited for the new beginning and some get the graduation blues. Nonetheless, everyone celebrates graduation in a great style.
We asked some recent grads about the feelings, pressures, and excitement surrounding graduation. This is what they had to say…
- Harrison: “I feel elated! Like when you are taking the last drop at a roller coaster ride. The ride is over but all you can think of is the excitement you just had. While graduating may mean that some people you have come to really like may go their way, it also means that now you have a great excuse to go and visit! So, I think this is a win-win situation.”
- Jay: “I feel really good when achieving something so I am really excited about the graduation. So proud of myself now! However, at the same time, I have anxiety about getting a job. How life would be in the future? …I’m looking forward to to my commencement day.”
- Mayank: “Graduation day is one of the most complex days in one’s life as the range of emotions you go through is almost head-spinning! You’re excited, scared, unsure, relaxed, and waiting for the big GO… Graduation day also marks a new and important phase in our lives as it certifies that one has acquired the certificate that declares your accomplishment in a particular field and nudges you into untested water. I got placed in Unilever before the graduation ceremony, which made me feel even more proud of my degree and university! All in all, a helluva day!”
Graduation is an important event that celebrates both the memories of the past and promises of future success. To immortalize this special event, remember that you can share pictures and create milestones at xtraxtra.com for free.
xtra xtra congratulates all the graduates as they begin a new chapter in their lives.
- Intern's Journal
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On June 6, 1944, over 160,000 troops landed on the French beaches in Normandy to turn the tide of World War II. Of these troops, more than 73,000 were Americans fighting to preserve liberty and freedom for all of mankind. The D-Day invasion remains the largest amphibious invasion in history, and it opened a second front in the war to ultimately weaken the Axis powers.
Today we encourage our friends and followers to pause and remember the bravery of those who fought on that perilous day. There are over two million World War II veterans still living today, so if you have the chance, take a moment to thank them for their hard work and devotion. We remember D-Day as an important military milestone that preserved freedom for generations to come, and we honor the sacrifices of the heroes who came before us.
- Milestone Spotlight
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The Scripps National Spelling Bee is well underway in Washington, DC this week. Two hundred and seventy-five kids have gathered to compete for the top spelling title. This year’s competitors range from ages 8-15, and they’re all competing for a huge academic milestone (not to mention $30,000 in prize money!).
Competitors for the spelling bee come from all corners of the country. Last year’s victor hailed from Cleveland, Ohio, while the first winner in 1925 came from Louisville, Kentucky. We know that dozens of communities will be tuning in to cheer for these kids during tonight’s final round, but we also know that this is an academic milestone that catches everyone’s attention. Indeed, we all have a word or two that we struggle with. Sure, it might not be “eudaemonic,” the winning word for Knoxville’s Henry Feldman in 1960, or “succedaneum,” the word that made Atkins, Minnesota native Sean Conley a winner in 2001, but there’s always something that makes you reach for Webster.
We asked some of our friends and followers to share their trickiest words with us. Here’s a look at what stumps the xtra xtra crowd…
- Reanna: Itinerary
- Jared: Exaggerate
- Lou: Conference
- Hillary: Abdomen
- Jenn: Initiative
- Chancey: Embarrassing
- Nicasio: Restaurant
- Lois: Unfortunately
- Randa: Misspelling
- Babette: Queue
- Caroline: Receive
- Jillian: Conscious
- Ann: Absence
- Molly: Renaissance
- Shikha: License
- Chris: Inconvenience
- Deanna: Cancelled
- Elisa, Rachel, & Catherine: Definitely
- Holland: Convenience
- Bailey: Maintenance
- Caryn: Judgment
- Stephanie: Ridiculous
The final round of the Scripps National Spelling Bee airs tonight at 8:30 on ESPN. Tune in to see an academic milestone in the making, and be sure to let us know what words stump you in a comment below!
- Just for Fun
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