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FableVision's Seasonal Survival Guide: December

December SSG.png

We’ve almost made it! We’re in the home stretch of 2018, the holidays are fast approaching, and the New Year is almost upon us. We know the last month of the year always goes by in a flurry, and it can be easy to let the days escape you, but have no fear! December’s guide will revamp your motivation, and help you soak in the last days of 2018.


Yeah, yeah, yeah, we know everyone’s New Year’s Resolution is to be more active, but why not start now?!  We have just the activities to get you moving this holiday season.

Get Active: Snow Excuses

  • Grab your trusty skates or rent a pair, and hit the ice (no, not literally, it may be slippery -- so try not to fall!) There’s something special about skating in the crisp night air under the stars, but if swimming is a more realistic option where you’re from, check out Rink Finder to find the closest indoor arena to you. Skating can be a daunting task to those who are not well acquainted with the sport, find adult skating classes near you!

  • If you’re not afraid of the cold and you live in the right climate, snowshoeing is an amazing winter outdoor activity. Buy a pair of snowshoes (or rent them from your local rec center) and go on an adventure! Great photo-ops along the way too! Need more info before taking the plunge? Check out this first-timer’s guide.

Walk/Drive Around to See the Lights: All Light Long

  • Holiday lights are right up there with fall foliage for the best views of the year. If your neighbors love to go all out, consider taking an evening stroll to see the festive decor. Nowhere worth gawking at nearby? Take a drive to the town center or another neighborhood with more to take in. The twinkly lights and beautiful displays are sure to get you in a cheery mood!


Whether you're looking for a fun and easy decoration or a beautiful homemade gift, we’ve got you covered.

Paper Snowflakes

Right Click to Download FableVision’s Snowflake Template

Right Click to Download FableVision’s Snowflake Template

"To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold."

The age-old classic doesn’t have to be so simple! Paper snowflakes can be beautiful, intricate designs that will spruce up any dorm room or party space! Check out these templates for a more mature version of a childhood favorite. After they’re cut out, leave them blank for a classic version, or add glitter and decoration.

Or, add a New Years spin to your snowflakes and write some early resolutions to keep you motivated throughout this last month of 2018 and get you excited for the year to come. It’s a snow-brainer!

Cinnamon Stick Candle

  • This candle makes a great homemade gift for a loved one (or for yourself. Plus, it’ll make your house smell amazing). All you need is a pillar candle, a glue gun and glue sticks, some cinnamon sticks, and an optional ribbon to finish it off. Anyone can do it! Here’s how:

  1. Get a candle and some cinnamon sticks from your local grocery or gift store. Think about how far up you want the cinnamon sticks to reach when deciding on a candle.

  2. Plug in your glue gun to get it ready to go! If doing this with children, make sure there is adult supervision! The glue guns can get extremely hot.

  3. Cut the cinnamon sticks to your desired height. Put them up against your candle to see if you prefer them to go all the way up , ¾ the way up, or half way up. All are great options that are sure to delight!

  4. Put a thin line of glue on each cinnamon stick and adhere them to the candle.

  5. (Optional) Grab some twine, a ribbon, or some raffia to tie around your candle creation.

  6. Before burning, place on a coaster or dish under your candle to ensure there will be no messes. Now you have a beautiful centerpiece or gift, perfect for all occasions!


Oh no! You got invited to a last minute holiday party but don’t want to show up empty handed? Store bought cookies can’t always cut it. Have no fear, we have a personal favorite recipe from Jen’s friends, the Stark family, that is sure to be a crowd favorite. Cracker candy is a holiday treat that everyone will love, with it’s chewy texture and sweet and salty flavor combo! And the best part, it only takes 20 minutes to make and about an hour to cool!


  • 1 ½ sleeves of saltine crackers

  • 2 ½ sticks of salted butter

  • 1 cup brown sugar

  • 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk

  • 1 bag dark chocolate chips

  • Optional: Sea salt, toffee pieces, crushed candy canes, crushed oreos



  • Line a ridged pan with parchment paper and preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit

  • Place crackers flat on pan covering it entirely

  • Melt ½ stick of butter in a pan and pour over crackers

  • Melt the remaining 2 sticks of butter in a pan on medium/low and stir in 1 cup brown sugar. Continue stirring over heat until  bubbly

  • Remove from heat and add condensed milk, stir until well combined and pour over crackers.

  • Put in the oven for 8 minutes, until bubbly but not burnt

  • Remove the tray and allow to cool for a few minutes before sprinkling chocolate chips on top.  Once melted slightly, spread chocolate chips over the entire tray. Add any desired toppings (we chose toffee pieces and sea salt, but the cracker candy is completely delicious as is!)

  • Allow to cool completely, then cut into pieces for serving. Enjoy!


Snow day has you stuck inside? We have the perfect movies to keep you cheery while you wait out the storm!

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How The Grinch Stole Christmas

  • “It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes, or bags,” because it came on Netflix. The love and joy surrounding the holiday season is enough to make anyone’s heart swell (or grow three sizes…) and what better way to enjoy the last month of 2018 than with a classic movie filled with laughs, that reminds you that the true meaning of the holidays doesn’t come from the store. Now with three options of which version you want to watch, the 1966 animated original, the 2000 live action, or the newest version, which came out just a month ago, there’s a Grinch movie for any movie watcher!



  • In a heroic tale based on a true story, Balto, a Siberian husky-wolf hybrid, leads his team of dogs through the Iditarod trail during an alaskan blizzard. Balto braves the storm and races time because his town of Nome experiences a health epidemic and medicine is needed as soon as possible. Traveling through the cold, Balto and his team encounter many dangers, but also some friends along the way. This high-stake adventurous tale will have you on the edge of your seat. Bundle up and get ready to watch Balto, the dog who will do anything to help his community and save the people he loves!

There’s snow easy way to say it, but this is the final installment of the Seasonal Survival Guide series. Thank you to our devoted readers (hi Mom!) and keep checking the InternVision blog for more amazing intern projects in the future!

Jen Jordan and Yasmine Ebeed’s Seasonal Survival Guide is an independent project of FableVision’s Fall 2018 Marketing Interns. Apply to join our team at



Not on the Nametag


Not on the Nametag is the collaborative project of FableVision’s Summer 2018 interns.

It’s time for a late-night bite! Join your friends Tab, Ada, Jo, and Brandon for a 2 a.m. diner run in this immersive, interactive comic. Not on the Nametag invites you to find and forge connections in unlikely places, and challenges you to stand up for what’s right.

Step through the doors of Gracie’s Diner, help yourself to a milkshake, and take a look around. You just might find something you didn’t expect…


Learn more about FableVision's internship program (and how to apply!) here.

(Editorial note: The Unity web player will not work on mobile devices. For optimal playing experience please view this interactive on the latest version of Chrome if you're experiencing issues.)



Read Outside the Margins: Chapter Three

From Vietnam, to Chile, to outer space, the third and final chapter of Read Outside the Margins is taking you to far off places! Travel across the globe with beautifully illustrated adventures, tales that will touch your heart, and stories that will show you the world as you’ve never seen it before. Grab your suitcase, take the quiz below, and get ready to explore new sights and cultures with a book just for you!


The Name Jar - Yangsook Choi (picture book, preschool)
I loved reading this sweet story with my students when I worked at a preschool. When Unhei arrives at school in the U.S. for the first time, she’s surprised to find that she’s expected to pick a new American name! Unhei’s journey to find home and comfort in a new land, while still cherishing her Korean heritage, will introduce kids to concepts like immigration, culture, and identity.


Esperanza Rising - Pam Muñoz Ryan (chapter book, late elementary school)
I could not get enough of historical fiction when I was a kid -- there’s something magical about traveling back in time through text. Author Pam Muñoz Ryan uses her writing to tell a story inspired by her own grandmother’s past, moving from wealth and status in Mexico to poverty and hardship in a labor camp in California. Although the book has some serious themes, it remains an accessible and engaging read, and tells an immigration story that often goes untold.


The Boy and the Bindi - Vivek Shraya (picture book, elementary school)
My heart swelled with each beautifully illustrated page of this story. Vivek Shraya tells the story of a boy who becomes enamored with his mother’s bindi. Rather than enforcing the strict gender code that bindis carry, his mother opens up the cultural significance of the bindi, allowing him to feel connected to his history and explore his sense of self.


Dawn - Octavia Butler (novel, high school)
My absolute favorite kinds of sci-fi books are ones that reimagine what what aliens can be -- and Butler is the master of this kind of reinvention. Dawn takes place on a biological spaceship circling the moon where the Oankali aliens have rescued a group of humans from the crumbling earth. The book tackles complex questions of what it means to be human, how place interacts with one’s humanity, and what it means to consent in an environment of manipulation. It’s not a light read, but it will have you thinking for days after you close the spine.


Ten Women - Marcela Serrano (novel, middle school)
What do a nerdy teen, a middle aged social pariah, and a housekeeper have in common? It might be more than you think. Ten Women tells the stories of ten women who represent the different demographics of Chile who are brought together by their therapist to share their life stories. Through each tale, links, and threads are made between the women to paint a broader picture of the variety of unique lives of Chilean women.

What We All Long For - Dionne Brand (novel, high school)
I’ve never been to Toronto, but Dionne Brand brings this bustling multicultural city to life in a such a real way that I feel like I’ve lived there myself after reading this book. This haunting and heartbreaking novel follows the interconnected stories of four twentysomethings caught between cultural worlds and struggling with their immigrant identities. Brand weaves separate narratives together so skillfully that these stories will stick with you long after the cliffhanger conclusion.

Thank you for following us on our journey through Read Outside the Margins! If you're just joining us, the goal of Read Outside the Margins is to shine the spotlight on stories that students from all walks of life can connect with and actually want to read. You can read more about our mission here.

From growing up, to family bonds, to trips around the world, we hope that you found at least one new story to make part of your life.  



The Collaborative Kitchen: An Independent Blog by Olivia Jones


This blog series is part of a larger initiative started by Olivia Jones, fall 2017 marketing intern. “The Collaborative Kitchen” is a site that welcomes all food lovers to explore ramblings, reflections, and delicious and easy original recipes. The goal of this blog series is to share Olivia’s passion for food in posts that are both thought-provoking and fun—to educate, create, and promote a positive food narrative around healthy habits, collaborative cooking, and meaningful meals.

Happy World Food Day! It’s only fitting that today’s delicious holiday coincides with The Collaborative Kitchen’s inaugural post. Today we’re celebrating food in all forms, picked fresh or prepared by hands all over the world. In line with this positive narrative, let’s do some diving in and debunking.

I’ve been obsessed with food my whole life, and by default, it’s almost always on my mind. After 21 years of this madness, you’d think I’d be a grub guru. The truth is, the more I think I know, the more I am surprised and enlightened by what I do not know. My inner-database is dynamic and constantly updating as I learn more about nutrition through media, classes, and shared experiences.

One thing I do know, however, is that food is a good thing.

Groundbreaking news, I know. But it’s something that people so often forget in a culture that praises certain foods and demonizes others. From internet ads that promise perfection by staying away from “fattening foods,” to the constant media bombardment of food-shaming messages, it seems as though the only remaining “healthy” options are kale and protein powder.

But before you toss out your bread and butter, re-evaluate the source. More often than not, these scare tactics are used to sell. It’s crucial to break down these meal myths. Everyone’s seen the classic commercial where we have a hungry person (usually a woman) trying to land on a snack, facing the token tradeoff of some delectable sweet versus the “healthier” option.

This type of ad is a textbook example of the binary I’m referring to when I say that certain foods are “demonized,” while others are praised. But in swearing off foods, we are both underestimating the human body and limiting ourselves from the simple experience of a tasty treat.

The point is—in its natural state—all food is good food so long as it is balanced. And at the end of the day, the key ingredient in the food we consume is healthy, satisfying energy. To get the most energy from your food, check out USDA’s MyPlate Checklist simulation, which can be adjusted depending on age, BMI, and calorie intake.  

So there you have it—it’s science. Thank goodness we can still eat cheese, amirite? Phew.

Speaking of which, I’m about to hit you with one of my favorite mashups of all time: pizza and fall, all nestled in a warm and cozy little boat.

Now I’m the kind of person that nearly weeps at the first orange leaf, but I promise no exaggeration when I say these are some of my favorite autumn treats. Hard to believe something that’s this melty can be nutritious, but with this recipe we’ve got Mother Nature decked out in her finest, a la veggie couture.  

Dare you to read on.



I first discovered spaghetti squash boats when I was perusing Pinterest one fateful, fall-enthused day. Upon spotting this recipe, the PSL-drinking, cozy sweater-wearing, Halloween-fangirling fire in me sparked like crazy. I had to make these boats of gooey, cheesy, veggie-loaded bliss. And so I did. And I’ve been making them ever since.

(serves 4)

  • 2 spaghetti squashes, washed
  • 2 c. favorite tomato sauce*
  • 1 c. fresh grated mozzarella (low-fat/part-skim is fine)
  • 8-16 turkey meatballs**
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano leaves
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Parmesan, to taste (optional)


* I used Trader Joe’s “Roasted Garlic Marinara,” but any tomato-based pasta/pizza sauce will work.
** Depending on how hungry you are. I usually use 4 meatballs per whole squash, cutting the meatballs into halves before placing them on top.

If vegetarian, feel free to sub in veggie meatballs or any other protein! If vegan, ditto, and switch out the cheese for vegan cheese.


  1. Preheat the oven to 375° F.

  2. Make sure spaghetti squashes are rinsed and sticker is peeled. Then, poke holes all over each with a sharp knife. One by one, place in the microwave for 3-5 minutes (this will soften them up and make them easier to slice in half).

  3. Allow squash to cool before slicing each in half with a knife. Turn squash half-side up on a cooking sheet and rub olive oil over the top, leaving the seeds intact (these will be scraped out later). Season generously with salt and black pepper, then place half-side down on the cooking sheet.

  4. Once the oven is finished preheating, place the cooking sheet with the squash in the oven and bake for about an hour until fragrant and tender. Remove from oven when cooked, place halves facing up again, and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes. While you’re waiting, crank the oven temperature up to 400° F.

  5. Scoop seeds out of the spaghetti squash using a large spoon—these can be discarded, or washed and saved to prepare later on!

  6. Using two forks, scrape the inside flesh of the squash to create “spaghetti” strings, leaving them inside of the skin, and discarding any additional seeds. Add ½ cup of tomato sauce and mix in with the squash until all of the flesh is coated. Nestle in the meatballs and sprinkle ¼ cup of mozzarella over the top of each half. Divide the teaspoon of dried oregano between the halves. (This will give it that good “pizza” flavor!)

  7. Place spaghetti squash in the oven for an additional 15 minutes until all cheese is melted. During the last five minutes, turn the oven settings to “BROIL” to give the cheese that pizza-like bubble and browning.

  8. Remove the spaghetti squash from the oven and serve in shallow bowls. For an extra sharpness, sprinkle the tops with fresh grated parmesan. Dig in!*

*When you dig in… make sure you don’t get too overzealous. “Pizza burn” doesn’t end with pizza (lesson learned the hard way by the roof of my mouth).