A story of twins separated at birth

A story of twins separated at birth

1. The early years

33-year-old Lin Backlund and Emelie Falk tick all of the boxes when it comes to mysterious, unique and heartwarming circumstances.

After all, it’s not everyday you meet twins who were separated at birth, only to be reunited as adults 29 years later. It’s also somewhat of a rare occurrence to discover that both sisters grew up to be school teachers, got married on the same day and even danced to the same wedding song – You and Me by Lifehouse.

In 1983, the non-identical twins were born to a large family in the northern city of Semarang, Indonesia. Eight months later, they were taken to an orphanage where they were both separately adopted to two loving couples. Strangely enough, both families lived in Sweden and raised the girls in adjoining towns.

The only catch was that neither twin knew about the other, and that wasn’t going to change any time soon.

“I knew I had a lot of siblings in Indonesia because we read the adoption papers a few times when I was young,” Lin said. “But I never felt like anything was missing. My younger sisters in Sweden were, and are, my real sisters.”

Emelie expressed similar feelings, but admitted that sometimes she did feel like something was missing.

“I guess in my heart I knew I had a twin sister, but I had everything you could ask for: two loving parents and a little brother. I had a really happy life,” she revealed. “When I was a little girl, my mum used to tell me I was born in her heart instead of her belly.”

Both girls grew up to be beautiful, kind hearted and smart young women with loving husbands and children of their own. They already had everything they wanted and needed, so why waste time digging up the past?

But when Emelie started planning her wedding in 2009, she began wondering about the circumstances surrounding her adoption. Eventually, she thought that perhaps it was worth some investigating. And just like an itch that wouldn’t go away, the curiosity eventually consumed her.

Which is when everything started to unravel…

2. suspicions

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“When you were a small girl, a woman called to ask if her daughter could maybe be your biological sister,” were the words Emelie’s mother used when she was questioned about the adoption.

According to her, when Lin’s parents left the orphanage with their new baby all those years ago, their taxi driver – confused – turned to them and asked:

“What about the other one, the sister?”

Assumedly, he’d seen the babies around and knew a thing or two about them. He even happily jotted the girls’ Indonesian names down on a piece of paper – Nur Hidayah (now Lin) and Nur Kasanah (now Emelie) so that the Backlunds could decide what to do with the information.

And without further adieu, the family took Lin home to Sweden and vowed to one day uncover the truth.

3. When nothing added up

 

Two years later, the Backlunds were finally able to track down Emelie and her family. To their astonishment, the Falks also lived in southern Sweden, which was a huge coincidence considering the twins were both born in Indonesia.

Eventually, the families arranged a meeting and sat down with one common goal in mind: to figure everything out once and for all.

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But when the Backlunds and the Falks compared their daughters’ birth certificates, a few confusing discrepancies were found. Lin’s certificate said she had more siblings than Emelie’s, and both documents listed different addresses for their biological parents. The only thing the birth certificates did have in common were their parents’ names, which wasn’t enough to convince anyone.

In light of this new information, the Backlunds and Falks concluded their daughters weren’t sisters, let alone twins. DNA tests hadn’t been invented back then, so there was very little anyone could do.

“We weren’t similar at all,” Emelie said. “And they were all just happy being a family. My parents has been longing for children for more than ten years.”

All connections were soon forgotten and subsequent contact was lost. However, both girls were raised in stable and loving homes. Lin was blessed with two younger sisters, while Emelie grew up with a brother three years her junior. To their parents’ credit, neither twin ever felt out of place or like they didn’t belong in their own homes.

“There was no difference between us growing up,” Lin said when questioned about her siblings. “Once my mother told the doctor, a few seconds before she could think it through, that she couldn’t understand why I was allergic to a lot of stuff, since neither she or my father had any allergies. She worked as a nurse and she’s usually educated, but just in that small second – that’s how natural she thought it was that we should have the same genes.”

4. PUTTING THEIR SUSPICIONS TO THE TEST

Fast forward 29 years and both women were still living in Sweden. They had moved out of their childhood homes, but they still had very positive relationships with their parents and siblings. 

But after learning of her adoption story, then 29-year-old Emelie began to think that maybe there was more to the story than her parents originally suspected. And now that technology was so advanced and information was more easily accessible, she could take matters into her own hands.

“When all of this information came to me, I decided to search for Lin, and I found her on Facebook,” Emelie said. “I was really nervous to send her a message, but I wrote ‘Hi, my name is Emelie. I don’t know if you’re the person I’m looking for, but…’ and then I told her the whole story my mum told me.”

According to Emelie, Lin was very sceptical at first and gave “quite short” replies, such as “Hi. Hm, this sounds weird.” But after Lin spoke with her own mother who confirmed Emelie’s story, she became more enthusiastic and the two soon became fast friends.

“We decided to meet for the first time in Lund at Lin’s place,” Emelie said. “When I saw her, the first thing I thought was that she was really pretty and had long legs. We sat in her living room and talked about everything and nothing. It felt really nice and relaxed.”

However, even though both women felt an instant connection, Lin said the meeting wasn’t particularly overwhelming or exciting, as neither twin knew whether they were actually sisters.

“We met because we at least had the same background, and we were probably born in the same village, or at least we had been in the same orphanage,” she admitted.

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After getting to know each other a bit more and keeping in constant contact, Lin and Emelie both eventually agreed to undertake a DNA test to find out once and for all if their feelings were warranted.

“It (the test) said we were 99.98% sisters,” Emelie said. “That made us both laugh and cry. It felt really nice, although we could already feel in our hearts that we were sisters and twins before the results came back.”

“I knew it was something good and special,” Lin agreed. “When we got the DNA results, it was a relief. It was an ‘okay’ that we were allowed to feel what we were feeling. We felt like we had been friends all our lives.”

5. The similarities and differences

Although Lin and Emelie are fraternal twins with many different interests, it’s blatantly obvious they also have plenty in common – and not only their teaching professions, wedding dates and wedding song selections.

“We’re both sensitive and sometimes we act on a feeling,” Lin said. “We have a hard time letting things go, and we care a lot about the wellbeing of others, which can be both good and bad.  We both also like home decorating and being creative. Emelie is good at writing, making birthday cards, scrapbooking and so on, and I have my sewing and gardening. We both also like music and singing, but Emelie’s so much better.”

But just like any other siblings, the twins also have their differences. For example, while Lin appears more calm and reserved, Emelie comes across louder and more outgoing.

“I like to talk and laugh out loud,” Emelie said. “I like to do things very fast and get them done quickly, while Lin’s the opposite.”

Lin, who agreed, said that Emelie is more comfortable being the centre of attention.

“She’s more social than me. I like to be in the background, except for when I teach,” she said. “People sometimes say I’m like the older sister and she’s the younger one, but I think that’s because she’s more lively and outgoing.

We’re both teachers, so we both like education. However, Emelie’s more patient with younger kids because I educate 17-19 year olds,” Lin laughed. “For me, they’re too much effort – even my own!”

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Lin then admitted that she’s calmer and more of a thinker than Emelie, but that Emelie tends to share more personal stories than she does.

“I’m happy to do that as well, but with people I know,” she said. “I don’t know why, because I trust people too, but I guess I just don’t like being in the centre as much. Emelie’s more sensitive and knows the right thing to say. I went to high school with just guys, so I guess sometimes I communicate as a typical male. No prejudice there, but I’m just more straight forward with what I think and I don’t take the time to read feelings.”

And although they are two independent, strong women with their own lives and responsibilities, at the end of the day they have the twin thing down pat.

“We can both sense how the other is feeling,” Emelie said. “Sometimes we text the other one in the middle of the night with “I know you’re awake. What’s up? How are you feeling?”

6. Nature vs nurture

“I think the environment plays the absolute biggest part of who we become. I also think it’s dangerous to think it’s all in our genes, like ‘blood is thicker than water’ because honestly, sometimes it’s not. You’re not done or finished when you’re born, you are made and change during your lifetime. The choices you make affect who you are. It’s not all in your genes. You are able to change who you are.” – Lin Backlund.

Lin and Emelie might be fraternal twins, but the nature vs nurture debate is always an interesting concept when it comes to twins or siblings who were separated at birth and raised apart.

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The debate is one of the oldest arguments in the history of psychology. There are many good and relevant points for both sides, so it’s been difficult for researchers to determine whether a person’s development is predisposed by his or her DNA, or whether it’s influenced by his or her experiences and environment.

There has always been fascination surrounding twins and siblings raised separately. Identical twins, in particular, share the same amount of DNA because they originate from the same egg. Fraternal twins, like Lin and Emelie, come from separate eggs and share only 50% of their DNA, just like normal siblings.

According to Personality Research, fraternal twins are far less likely to be as similar as identical twins, but there are still possibilities that they – like any normal siblings – could grow up to have the same interests, tastes in food, fashion style, friends and more.

Personality is a good example of a trait that has been studied in both identical and fraternal twins. Identical twins reared apart are much more similar in personality than fraternal twins in the same situation. According to researchers, this suggests that personality is heritable.

Dr Nancy Segal, Professor of Psychology at California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) and Director of the Twin Studies Centre, has authored approximately 120 scientific articles regarding twins. She has also published four books, and is currently working on a fifth one titled ‘Twin Mythconceptions: Facts Or Fiction?’

 According to Dr Segal, identical twins reared apart are just as alike as identical twins reared together. To rule out identical appearance, she even studied personality in unrelated look alikes who turned out to be quite different. However, this wasn’t surprising as she very much expected that to be the case.

Dr Segal revealed that nature and nurture both play roles in shaping a person, but genes have a greater influence on some things, such as personality, rather than other things like job satisfaction.

She also said that separated twins are generally more alike than different later in life. One example she provided was a set of identical twins she studied in her book: ‘Invisible by two: lives of extraordinary twins.’ These twin brothers were part of a landmark Minnesota twin study that Dr Segal was heavily involved with, and which took place from the late 1980s until the early 2000s.

 Jack Yufe and Oskar Stohr were born in 1993 in Port of Spain, Trinidad, to a German Catholic mother and a Romanian Jewish father. However, Yufe grew up as Jewish in Trinidad and became part of the Israeli navy. His identical twin brother, Oskar Stohr was raised as a Catholic in Nazi Germany and eventually joined the Hitler Youth.

According to Dr Segal, the men were “very similar in most aspects, except for their political and historical views.”

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When the brothers first met, they didn’t get along at all. In fact, they refused to acknowledge each other as fellow human beings – let alone twins. They said goodbye on bad terms, and it wasn’t until 25 years later during the Minnesota Twin Study that they were reunited.

When Yufe and Stohr met at the airport, coincidently they were both wearing the exact same outfit: a white sports jacket, a shirt and glasses. Additionally, both twins enjoyed reading books from back to front, wrapped rubber bands around their wrists, wore tight swimsuits, sneezed loudly in lifts and always flushed the toilet before and after using it.

In Dr Segal’s book, she said most of these traits could be explained by genetics. The toilet flushing, for example, was most likely a result of the brothers’ aversion to germs.

The only things the men didn’t have in common were their political views and beliefs, including who they thought was responsible for World War II. Obviously, the twins had extremely different upbringings and it was difficult for their genes to overcome such prominent and strong environmentally shaped beliefs.

The Minnesota Twin Study ran for over 20 years. The researchers studied 137 pairs of separated twins – 81 identical and 56 fraternal. The study was revolutionary in the respect that scientists discovered the environment didn’t play a role as significant as they originally suspected. For example, religiosity and social attitudes showed a genetic influence, rather than an environmental one.

Another study, which was commissioned by the Journal Science, researched intelligence in relation to genetics. They found that 70 percent of IQ variation across the twin population was caused by genetic differences, and 30 percent was due to environmental differences.

Among identical twins, 80 percent of those surveyed said they felt closer to their new twin than they currently did with their oldest and closest friends. According to researchers, this suggested a very strong genetic component in the bond between identical twins.

Twin studies have evolved significantly over the last few decades. New research has given scientists an entirely innovative understanding of the roles that both genes and the environment play in human development. Now and in the future, researchers are aiming to link specific genes to certain behaviours. They’re also hoping to discover a lot more about genetic and environmental crossovers and their relationships to both identical and fraternal twins.

7. Where are Lin and Emelie now?

It’s now been five years since Lin and Emelie met for the first time, but according to them it feels much longer.

“It was like suddenly having a new best friend that you don’t really know, but it feels like you do,” Lin said. “We have known each other for just five years, but it feels like a life time. I also feel safe with her. I know she will be there for me and I for her no matter what.

We send text messages every other day, and talk almost every week. We both work as teachers and have small children, so we have a lot to discuss. However, we both have very busy lives, so we don’t see each other that often. It’s also hard because we have different families, so all holidays and special occasions are with different families and friends.”

And although Emelie said sometimes she feels sad that she and Lin missed out on so much of each other’s lives, she wouldn’t change anything, as they both have very good lives.

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“Now we have kids, and they have the opportunity to get to know each other and be a part of each other’s lives,” Emelie said. “That makes me happy.”

Lin currently lives with her husband and two young sons, while Emelie lives with her husband and two infant daughters.

Emelie teaches Swedish to immigrants, and also teaches English and Swedish to young children. When she gets the time, she enjoys writing, singing and hanging out with her family and friends.

Lin leads a very busy life teaching high school students, but she also runs a small company where she sells and sews clothes. Some of her hobbies also include running, cycling and gardening.

8. More reunions

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Due to the success of their own reunion, the twins have even travelled back to Indonesia a few times to meet their biological family. According to Emelie, their first meeting was “magical,” but she couldn’t have done it without Lin by her side.

During one of their trips to Indonesia, Lin and Emelie were shocked to discover that they also had biological twin brothers who were separated at birth, adopted and raised separately – only a few years prior to their own adoptions.

After reaching out to the Internet, the women were eventually able to locate their twin brothers, Heru and Hero. One of the brothers was presumed dead, so they only searched for Heru. However, it was a very pleasant surprise when both Heru and Hero responded to the search.

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The male twins were raised in different countries, and according to Lin, they have many differences. The men still have difficulties speaking with each other, as they both experienced “sad and hard” childhoods which affected them greatly.

As for their other biological siblings, they have 13 in total. 11 of them are still in Indonesia, and Lin and Emelie have even been introduced to some of them.

Emelie said that she’d always believed her personality was similar to her Swedish family’s, but upon meeting her Indonesian family, she realised that she and Lin also inherited a number of traits from them.

“I don’t like being alone,” she said. “And I believe it’s because we have a lot of family members and it’s somehow in my blood to feel safe with a lot of people around me. I’m also sensitive, just like my sisters and biological mum.”

9. But the story isn’t over yet…

 
There are still some remaining mysteries regarding Lin and Emelie’s story…

Firstly, why was that taxi driver so familiar with the babies’ names all those years ago? Nobody knows for sure, but some people have speculated that he was actually their biological father.

And secondly, are Lin and Emelie’s similarities and differences due to their near identical upbringings or were they caused by DNA?

“We both had good, safe childhoods with everything we ever needed,” Lin said. “We both have the same culture and same typical Swedish family life, so it’s hard to see any differences there. Perhaps it would have been easier if one of us were brought up in a totally different culture or country. We were even brought up in the same part of Sweden.”

10. Their advice

While many can’t relate to Lin and Emelie’s situation, it’s never certain what life has in store. And if you’ve been separated from a loved one, or if you were adopted, one day you might want to find out more.

Here’s Emelie’s advice:

“It’s so different for every person, but I know that for many people this means everything. My advice is to be as calm as possible and take your time to get to know the person you were separated from. It’s very emotional, and it’s not always easy to handle.

Lin and I were lucky that we had each other when we were searching for our biological parents. We’re also in the same country, speak the same language and have people around us who make us feel safe. I think it’s important that you have someone to talk to. Family members, friends, or even someone you don’t know. There are a lot of different adoption groups on Facebook, for example – people to talk to and share experiences with.”

If you have any questions regarding adoption, you can anonymously call the adoption hotline on 1-800-923-6602, or you can visit their website.

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7 things people really need to stop doing on public transport

7 things people really need to stop doing on public transport

Originally published by me on Mamamia.com.au.

This morning I was on the train when a woman pulled out a small disposable razor and started shaving her legs.

Yep. She was shaving her legs. DRY. ON THE TRAIN.

Um, I know it’s the silly season and all, but seriously? I’d much rather go to work with the hairiest legs in the world than shave in front of an entire peak hour train carriage.

 Unfortunately, that’s not even the weirdest thing that’s known to happen on public transport. Here are some (of many) more annoying passenger habits:

1. People who board without letting others off first

These people are so desperate to nab a seat, they’re willing to bowl over frail elderly women and their tiny walking sticks.

You’ve probably seen them before – they’re the commuters who line up where they think the carriage will stop about 15 minutes before the train’s expected to actually arrive.

They refuse to move for people getting on other trains and when theirs finally arrives, they barge in the doors as soon as possible — alighting passengers be damned.

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I don’t know where you people learned your manners, but don’t you know you’re supposed to stand to the side of the carriage and wait for EVERYONE TO GET OFF?

Would you really prefer be the cause of someone falling onto the freaking train tracks, rather than having to stand for 10 measly minutes?

Remember: sensible people are good people.

2. People who sniffle and/or cough without covering their mouth

Not only are you probably infecting me with your illness, but you’re doing in a really awful way. Just stop.

Nobody can help getting sick and sometimes we still have to go to work, but please try not to spread your germs by being a gross person.

Trust me, the sound of blowing your nose is much nicer than the sound of snot being sucked around every two minutes.

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3. People who put their bags on the seat

This is one of my biggest pet peeves. What gives you the right to dictate whether people can sit next to you?

Did your bag pay for a ticket? No, I didn’t think so!

I know it’s as simple as asking someone to move their bag, which I’ve happily done on many occasions. But the point is that I shouldn’t have to do in the first place.

How about you just not put your stuff on perfectly good seats? Great, thanks.

4. People who trim their nails

To be honest, this is even grosser than shaving your legs on public transport.

Where are your disposed nails going? Are you dropping them on the floor so that someone else can clean them up, or are you allowing them to fling across the carriage and potentially land on some poor unsuspecting soul’s head?

Either way, not cool.

5. People who eat smelly food

People who eat on public transport don’t bother me at all. But people who eat smelly food in small spaces? Bad.

Whipping out a can of tuna, an egg sandwich or even leftover curry is a huge no no. It gets up the nostrils of everyone around you and when it mixes with the already sometimes-questionable scent of public transport, they’ll want to puke.

I used to catch the train to work, and without fail, the same woman would sit next to me every single morning. She seemed nice enough, but she liked to eat corn on the cob for breakfast.

Now, plenty of people enjoy a good cob of corn — but I don’t know anyone who eats it at 7:30am. Out of a plastic bag. For 50 minutes straight.

I even moved carriages several times, but she somehow still sought me out. She then spent the entire journey nibbling as slowly as possible on her corn while elbowing me in the ribs.

Fun times.

6. People who read over your shoulder

Trust me, my text messages aren’t that interesting. Most of the time I’m just messaging my mum asking her what belongs in the fridge and what belongs in the pantry.

It’s even more annoying when I’m trying to read a book or newspaper. You do know that you’re not being stealthy, right? I can feel your eyes burning through my pages.

If you’re really that fascinated with my reading material, why don’t you just buy your own damn one?

7. People who listen to music without headphones

Yes, I always listen to music on public transport. I’d be bored out of my mind otherwise.

But I use these small things called headphones that – shockingly – allow only me to hear my music. Crazy concept, right?

Apparently it is for some people. They seem to think their music is so great that everyone else should also be subjected to its torture.

But the train’s not your personal dance party, buddy, so give it up.

Feel free to inflict the pain on your own ears, but leave mine out of it.

Mum gives dolls ‘makeunders’ and now she has a thriving business

Mum gives dolls ‘makeunders’ and now she has a thriving business

Originally published by me on Mamamia.com.au.

Have you ever refused to buy your child a doll because of the way they look?

Were you told by your child that ‘all the other kids have them’ and ‘you’re being so unfair?’ You are not alone.

One Sydney mum has decided to do something about it by transforming traditional dolls into a toy she really wants to give her daughter.

Mim Hammonds collects pre-loved Bratz dolls from various op shops and garage sales and transforms them by removing their makeup, repainting their faces, fixing their hair and eliminating the six-inch stilettos.

The mother-of-two appeared on The Morning Showearlier this week where she told hosts, Kylie and Larry, she initially only intended to ‘makeunder’ dolls for her young daughter. But the word spread and now she’s receiving hundreds of orders from people all over the world.

“I have a three year old daughter who’s obsessed with dolls, and I wanted to give her some to play with,” she told The Morning Show.

“The ones I found in the shops I wasn’t happy with. I just didn’t think they were appropriate. And being a crafty mum, I thought – ‘right, I can do this’.”

Mim began her creative pursuit after she won a competition where she was gifted with a gorgeous repainted doll from talented artist, Samantha Murphy. Mim became so inspired she nabbed a DIY booklet from Tree Change Dolls, and with the help of various YouTube tutorials, she slowly learnt how to manufacture these dolls herself.

And now her thriving online business, Mim’s Dandy Dolls has become more popular than she ever anticipated.

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With Mim’s doll of choice to ‘makeunder’ being the popular Bratz doll, she has had a surprising reaction to her venture.

“Since starting my page, I have been abused, trolled and attacked by hard-core Bratz fans who are obviously heavily influenced by the Bratz image,” the businesswoman told Mamamia.

“There’s a big emphasis on being skinny, on appearing sexy and having attitude. The sexual connotations and comments, the shocking language and level of abuse they direct towards anyone who doesn’t like Bratz, and the open bullying on social media is quite frightening and disturbing,” she said.

“Children have the right to not be bombarded with that message when they’re simply being children and playing, which is just one reason I think my dolls are important.”

Each one of Mim’s Dandy Dolls has her own unique story and personality, as opposed to existing on appearance alone.

In fact, they’re just like the special kids in your own life. They climb trees, play in dirt, help each other, solve puzzles, run fast, are intelligent, love reading and writing, have great senses of humour, throw their heads back when they laugh and are one of a kind.

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“Meet Lisa! My little thinker, kissed abundantly by the fairies. She may appear to be listening to you but is more likely inventing something terribly clever in her mind! Lisa is often in trouble at school for not paying attention but it’s so hard to stay focused on something that doesn’t interest you when you have more pressing matters to think upon! Like why one layer of clouds is moving faster than another, or how the bird outside is making such a compact, fiddly little nest with out any fingers, or how she could save time in the morning by wearing her school clothes to bed at night.” Image and caption via @dandelionthread on Etsy.

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“Meet Alison – a vivid reader with a vivacious and cheeky personality. Her heroine is Hermione Granger because aside from the fact that they share the same thick, bushy hair, Hermione is brave and clever and kind – all things that Alison tries to be. Alison wants to be a writer when she grows up.” Image and caption via @dandelionthread on Etsy.

By creating these stories, Mim hopes to pass on messages that children should come just as they are, and to embrace their perfect imperfections. To show that sometimes the thing that makes them a little different can actually be the thing that makes them so special.

“I love the quote ‘We get so worried about being pretty – let’s be pretty kind, pretty funny, pretty smart, pretty strong.’ That’s the message to young girls that I hope my dolls encourage. To put more value on character, on kindness, on the ability to solve problems or help others. On appreciating all the amazing things the human body is capable of doing rather than how hot or sexy it can be.”

Additionally, Mim has dabbled in the art of recreating a few Barbie dolls. And although she’s not 100% confident with them yet, she’s determined to keep practising.

For more information on Mim’s Dandy Doll, please visit Mim’s Etsy page.

New Gilmore Girls’ website released

New Gilmore Girls’ website released

Originally posted by me on AussieGossip.com.au.

It’s time to grab your coffee and junk food, Gilmore fans! It looks like we’re in for a long day of web surfing. A Stars Hollow replica website has just been released and it’s everything we ever wanted in life.

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The cool new website was delivered after Gilmore Girls reached a number of awesome milestones. 16 years ago today, the world was blessed with the very first episode of everyone’s favourite dramedy. But more importantly, now it’s only 50 days until its revival, A Year in the Life, lands on Netflix.

As most of us probably know (and you’re missing out if you don’t) Stars Hollow is the wacky town where all of our fave GG stars live. It’s full of intense town meetings, crazy ballet schools and of course Luke’s diner (no phones allowed!)

Due to its super close knit community, there are absolutely no secrets in this town. That’s how we know the new website has actually been around since 2007, and that Kirk just forgot the password (no, we’re not surprised either). We’re just wondering if he’s been fined by Taylor yet…

The site is just like the real Stars Hollow website, and it even has a section where the concerned public can submit questions and suggestions for future meetings. It has town updates (Rory’s graduation dilemma… why can’t the whole town attend?) and much more.

In further celebration, Netflix has also released a new trailer with both new and old GG clips. Let us rejoice!

While we’re stoked we’re getting so many spoilers and treats, we’re kinda just hoping November 25 would hurry the hell up. Oy with the poodles already!

Netflix finally announces Stranger Things season 2

Netflix finally announces Stranger Things season 2

Originally published by me on AussieGossip.com.au.

Looks like it’s good news for those of us who binge watched Netflix’s latest craze series, Stranger Things in one day. A second season has just been announced, and we’re not even ashamed to admit we’ll be going back into hibernation soon.

The ’80s themed TV show was a massive hit, so it’s no surprise it got a second season. But Netflix took its sweet time making the announcement, and we’ve been waiting for ages to find out what happened to our fave characters.

To celebrate the show’s 2017 release, Netflix treated us to the below teaser video, which shows a different version of the opening credits with words we can only assume are names of the new episodes. Don’t watch if you don’t like spoilers!

More exciting news is that the original cast is expected to return, and the Duffer brothers will continue writing and producing. They’re even giving us an extra episode this time because there’s so much more of the story to tell!

“We want it to feel like a big movie,” Matt Duffer said at the Television Critics Association press tour earlier this year. “But there’s a bigger mythology, and there’s a lot of dangling threads at the end.”

“It’s about giving enough so the audience feels satisfied,” Ross Duffer added.

The brothers also revealed we can expect a return to the Upside Down world, four new characters who will rock the boat and an exploration of the world outside the town of Hawkins.

While we wait, here are some very important questions we hope will be answered ASAP.

1. What did Will cough up?

Our lost boy was finally saved from the Upside Down world, only to cough up some disgusting ‘pollywog’ that we still don’t understand. Not only that – but he’s hiding it from his friends and family. Why, Will? Why?!

2. Will we get justice for Barb?

Barb was a minor character, but we loved her anyway. She was different to most TV girls, and we’ll be absolutely devo if she doesn’t come back. We’re praying for you, Barb!

3. Where the hell is Eleven?

Seriously, what happened to our fave telekinetic girl? She sacrificed herself to save her friends at the end of the show, and we’ve been waiting with bated breath ever since. How dare they end it like that?!

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Here’s hoping the new season will creep us out yet draw us in just as much as the first!

Catfished man thought he was dating Katy Perry for six years

Catfished man thought he was dating Katy Perry for six years

Originally published by me on AussieGossip.com.au.

In what might be the craziest cashfish ever, it’s been revealed that a man thought he’d been dating Katy Perry for six years, despite the fact the celeb had been married and involved in several relationships during this time.

American man, Spencer Morrill said he ‘met’ the brunette bombshell on a dating app and that they ‘clicked immediately.’ He didn’t doubt he was dating Perry, even though they’d only exchanged emails, texts and ‘talked’ on the phone once.

“She’s awesome. Katy’s funnier than I am. She’s smarter than I am. I don’t know how many people give her credit for that, but she’s very intelligent. Katy’s full of life. Huge heart,” he said.

Spencer even made the singer an engagement ring worth 25 percent of his entire savings. Luckily, presenters of MTV’s Catfish discovered the truth before he had the chance to give her the ring!

After the super-sleuth presenters traced ‘Katy’s’ contact details to a British woman named Harriet, they addressed the woman directly and then asked her to apologise.

“You need to start thinking about the fact that this is an actual human being. As weird and crazy as he might be, he has a heart and was giving it to you 100 percent for six years of his life. For both of you, there’s some self reflection that needs to happen,” MTV presenter, Nev Schulman said.

Poor Spencer was a bit bummed, and had a hard time believing he had been speaking to someone other than his beloved Katy, and it took awhile to convince him otherwise.

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According to The Sun, Harriet eventually apologised to Spencer and said, “I can’t really change what I did, but I understand it was really wrong.”

The episode of Catfish ended with the two parting on good terms, but it has since been discovered that Spencer’s been emailing Harriet again, and keeps changing his mind about whether he’s really talking to the Billboard Music Awards winner.

We guess love really is blind. But hey, if we thought we’d been dating a celebrity, we’d probably hold on for dear life too!

Update:

Katy Perry finally responded to the situation on Thursday when she was a guest on Sirius XM’s Morning Mashup radio station. She revealed somebody sent her the article, but that she couldn’t read it all the way through, as it was “very sad.”

When one of the radio hosts implied that Spencer wasn’t “wide awake” during this ruse, Katy responded like a boss.

“Yeah, you know, not everyone can be, but I think that, you know, my heart goes out to him, actually,” she said, “because anybody that’s been fooled like that or just you know… People have dreams, and people live in different parts of the world where not everything is as accessible.

Like, we live on the coast, and you know, we get stuff in a way that some other people don’t get, and so I feel bad for him. And so I didn’t really like to indulge in that, because my heart would die.”

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It might not be what Spencer was hoping for, but hey, at least Katy knows who he is now!

Three more Harry Potter books are coming

Three more Harry Potter books are coming

Originally published by me on AussieGossip.com.au.

Harry Potter fans rejoice! Put those tissues away and pull yourself together – we have some very exciting news.

It has just been revealed that J.K. Rowling has written three short stories that “explore the dark roots of the wizarding world.” These eBooks will be available next month on Pottermore, and each story will focus on different areas of our beloved Potter universe.

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According to the Pottermore, these stories “dig deep into the Harry Potter stories, with tidbits taken from Pottermore’s archives and original writing from J.K. Rowling.”

The first short story, Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide, will revolve around Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. We’ll finally find out what happens when the Sorting Hat doesn’t know where to sort a student.

The second story, Short Stories from Hogwarts of Power, Political and Pesky Poltergeists, will be about everyone’s favourite Slytherin, Professor Horace Slughorn. It will also look at the horrifying conditions of Azkaban prison. We’re all screaming inside because we’ve only been dying to know more since… forever!

And finally, the third story Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies will feature a number of Hogwarts professors, like the magnificent Minerva McGonagall and late werewolf Remus Lupin.

This news comes only weeks after Rowling announced that there will be no more Harry Potter franchise, so we guess that our treasured universe is harder to kill than Voldemort himself.

Either way, we’re not complaining!

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