Thursday, 31 December 2015

Goodbye 2015, Hello 2016!


HAPPY LAST DAY OF 2015!!!

This year has been a soul searching year. I started off the year quitting my job which was hard, but at the time I thought it was the right decision for me. I then spent 9 months unemployed and having a lot of me time where I basically read a whole lot and then got addicted to Big Brother again (as I'm sure you're well aware if you followed my blog this summer). After Big Brother ended, I needed to go back to work and none of the places I handed resumes to were calling so luckily Tim Hortons took me back and let me work with my mom at the store she manages. Going back there, I realized that this is what I know and what I'm good at. My mom helped me realize that I can make a decent living with this company, so I made the decision to stay with it and work on making this my career.

Now that I know what I'm going to do with my life. It's time to make 2016 the year where I first get my license because it's time! But mainly it's the year where I'm focusing on my love life. I say that every year, but this year I mean it. Being alone all the time is sometimes necessary, but for the most part, it's lonely. I'm ready to find love and see what it's all about.

So I have my plans for the upcoming year sorted, how about you? What are your plans and resolutions for the new year?

With that, I wish you all reading a very happy New Year!! All the best!

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

What I Got for Christmas: 2015


Just like last year, I thought I'd share some of the things I got for Christmas. This isn't everything, but most of it.


A bookcase!! I'm so excited to finally have my own bookcase. If you saw the state of my closet right now, you'd know that this was a much needed gift.


Some Toronto Maple Leafs memorabilia!!


NutriBullet! I wanted one of these for about a year now, so I'm happy that I finally got one.


I think these little dolls are so cute, and I thought that make good bookcase decorations. I love both Elsa and Rapunzel so I just had to get them! I'll probably get more of my favourite characters later on, but this is a good start.


I'm in love with The Maze Runner series, so of course I had to get this start away. Plus Dylan O'Brien, yum!


I love Rainbow Rowell's writing style, so this year I plan to read all her books. I've only read Fangirl, but I absolutely loved it. So I think I'll be starting with this one at the start of next year (pretty much in 2 days!). Plus my new bookmark that I got in my stocking that I love!


A few more of the books I got;
-Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella
-I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
-The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson
-Carry On by Rainbow Rowell


Tasha (my step sister) and her boyfriend, Mark, bought me Frozen!! Yes, I've Frozen obsessed. I'm so happy that I finally have my own copy of this movie.


Tasha and Mark also bought be a new mug with an infuser and three different kinds of teas. I knew about all the other gifts I was getting, so this one I wasn't expecting and I think that's why I think it's so special and one of my favourite gifts!


I love peppermint tea. So this one I had to try right away! It's so good!! Better than your traditional peppermint tea, it's little mini candy canes in it and the vanilla flavouring makes it taste so good.


Who doesn't love gingerbread!! This tea is the perfect blend to give that gingerbread cookie taste.


Just trying this one for the first time as I'm writing up this post, and it's so good!! Such a good blend of different fruits.

I'm now obsessed with David's Tea, and have to go back to try all the different flavours.

I'm also obsessed with the mug!! The candy canes change colour when you add hot water to the mug!

Before

After

There's most of my gifts. What was your favourite gift that you got this Christmas? I hope everyone had a very happy and safe Christmas!
 

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Username: Evie - Book Review


Started: Dec 28, 2015 | Finished: Dec 28, 2015

Username: Evie by Joe Sugg
Published by Hodder & Stoughton Ltd on Nov 24, 2015 (Canada)
Genre: Graphic Novel, fantasy
Pages: 192
Book Edition: Hardcover (signed) and Paperback
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis: 
Like anyone who feels as though they just don't fit in, Evie dreams of a place of safety. When times are tough, all she wants is a chance to escape from reality and be herself.

Despite his failing health, Evie's father comes close to creating such a virtual idyll. Passing away before it's finished, he leaves her the key in the form of an app, and Evie finds herself transported to a world where the population is influenced by her personality. Everyone shines in her presence, until her devious cousin, Mallory, discovers the app... and the power to cause trouble in paradise.
Rating: 5/5

MyReview:  

This is the first graphic novel I've ever read, and I'm happy it was Joe's that I started with. As I have mentioned a few times on this blog, I'm a massive fan of Joe Sugg's! Like I said in my Addicted to YouTube: Part 1 post, Joe is my favourite YouTuber above everyone else. Joe's videos are the ones I turn to whenever I need a laugh, if I'm feeling down or just bored, I turned to his three channels because I know he'll put a smile on my face. So of course, I will support him in anything he's doing because he's done so much for me over the years that I've been subscribed to his channels.

This story is about a girl named Evie who is an outcast at her school. Her cousin, Mallory, being the main source of making her life miserable. When her dad dies, she turns to his computer and discovers a virtual world that he created just for her to escape reality. But when the world gets corrupted, it's up to Evie to save it and find her way home again.

I loved this story! It was great to read Evie go through a journey of self-discovery and self-worth. I loved the fantasy element of it as well. I just wish it was longer, and I hope there's a part 2 somehow. Another great thing about this graphic novel is that there was little Easter Eggs throughout the book that if you've been watching Joe's videos for a while, you will spot them easily.

I'm a very proud of Joe and this world his created in Username: Evie. It's an amazing story, and like I said, I'd love a part 2. Fun fact, this graphic novel broke world records when it was released. It is now the fastest selling Graphic Novel since records began. Well done, Joe!! Keep up the good work!

Another fun personal fact, I have two copies of this graphic novel, paperback and hardcover (signed). Something amazing happened when I first purchased the paperback edition; I posted on Instagram about it and Joe liked my post (something he'd done a week and half before when I posted about his DVD, Hit the Road. Caspar liked that post as well!!). Then, Joe announced he was putting a bulk order of signed copies on Amazon for a Christmas sale. So I cancelled my previous order of the Hardcover before it was shipped, and ordered a signed copy!! Now both editions to my copies have special things about them! Thanks Joe!!


Are you a fan of Joe Sugg's? What did you think of Username: Evie?

Monday, 28 December 2015

Hello Life - Book Review


Started: Dec 20, 2015 | Ended: Dec 27, 2015

Hello Life by Marcus Butler
Published by Headline on Nov 10, 2015 (Canada)
Genre: Non-fiction, Autobiography
Pages: 256
Book Edition: Hardcover
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis:
Marcus Butler's irreverent YouTube channel has long combined laughs and comedy sketches with thoughts on more serious issues. What sets him apart from the rest is his ability to mix light-hearted banter with a deep empathy for the problems facing young people today. Thanks to his experiences of family illness, his parents' divorce, weight issues and catastrophic hair days, Marcus is in a unique position to share everything he has learned about healthy living, relationships and dealing with the daily pressures life throws at us all. Working with journalist and writer Matt Allen, in HELLO LIFE! his part-autobiography, part-self help guide Marcus shares his trademark big-brotherly advice and unveils his roadmap to success for anyone navigating the trickier aspects of modern living.

Funny, cool, fully illustrated and totally readable, this book is the ultimate must-have for fans of Marcus Butler.
Rating: 5/5

My Review:

As you may know from my Addicted to Youtube: Part 2 post, I'm a big fan of Marcus'! So I was very excited to purchase and read his new book, and I genuinely enjoyed it and the topics Marcus discussed in it. In this book, Marcus talks about health, dating, how to survive a crisis with friends & family, and how to be successful.

What I liked was Marcus would start each topic talking about his experience in that area, and then would give advice or tips afterwards that could help you. I loved reading about health and how he changed his lifestyle to a healthy one. He and Niomi are both inspiring so many people to be healthier, myself included, so it's nice to read what inspired him and how he stays motivated.

I love Marcus and Niomi together, and I really enjoyed reading about how they met to when they started dating. I'm very sad that they recently broke up. I found out just after reading that chapter of Marcus' book. But I respect that you can't know everything that's going on in other peoples lives, especially those that put a large part of their lives on social media. I wish them all the best!

Marcus went through some of the crisis's he's experienced in his life with friends and family, and talked about how he dealt with it. He also talked about his YouTube story and how it all began. This book is great if you're a fan of Marcus' as you learn more about him as well as get some helpful advice in certain areas from his perspective. Well done Marcus on a great book!


Are you a fan of Marcus Butler's? What did you think of his book?

Friday, 25 December 2015

Merry Christmas!


Happy Holidays Everyone!! Whatever this holiday means to you, I hope you are all happy and healthy this holiday season! As I may have mentioned once or twice, this is my favourite holiday. I love everything about it. I love when everything is all festive and everyone is in the holiday spirit.

So I just wanted to make a quick post today to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. I hope you're all having a wonderful day!

Saturday, 19 December 2015

The Amazing Book is Not On Fire - Book Review


Started: Dec 16, 2015 | Finished: Dec 18, 2015

The Amazing Book is Not On Fire by Dan Howell and Phil Lester
Published by Ebury Press on Oct 8, 2015
Genre: Non-Fiction, Autobiography
Pages: 224
Book Edition: Hardcover, Audiobook
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis: 
Hello reader,

In this book is a world. A world created by two awkward guys who share their lives on the internet!

We are Dan and Phil and we invite you on a journey inside our minds! From the stories of our actual births, to exploring Phil's teenage diary and all the reasons why Dan's a fail.

Learn how to draw the perfect cat whiskers, get advice on what to do in an awkward situation and discover which of our dining chairs represents you emotionally. With everything from what we text each other, to the time we met One Direction and what really happened in Vegas...
Rating: 5/5

My Review:

I may not be as immeresed in the "Phandom" like others, but I do love Dan and Phil as they were in my Addicted to YouTube: Part 2 post. So this was another book that I was excited to get when it came out. I also purchased the audiobook because as I've said many times, I love when the writers read their story to me while I follow along with the book.

This book was so good! It was creative and funny just like them. If you are a fan of Dan and Phil's, then this book is perfect for you. It makes you through their early years, highschool years, and university years. They tell the story of how they each got started with YouTube. There's fun writing challenges throughout the book. Stories about how they got started on BBC Radio 1, when they met One Direction for the first time, and their first trip to Japan. Also what happened in Vegas that one time! This book has it all.

I loved every bit of it!! I highly recommend getting both the book and audiobook, it makes reading this book so enjoyable!


Are you in the "Phandom"? What are your thoughts on Dan and Phil and their Amazing Book that's Not on Fire? (I had to!)

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

My True Love Gave to Me - Book Review


Started: Dec 5, 2015 | Ended: Dec 14, 2015

My True Love Gave to Me by Multiple Authors
Published by St. Martin's Press on Oct 14, 2014
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Pages: 321
Book Edition: Hardcover
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis:
If you love holiday stories, holiday movies, made-for-TV-holiday specials, holiday episodes of your favorite sitcoms and, especially, if you love holiday anthologies, you’re going to fall in love with My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Stories by twelve bestselling young adult writers, edited by international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins. Whether you enjoy celebrating Christmas or Hanukkah, Winter Solstice or New Year's there's something here for everyone. So curl up by the fireplace and get cozy. You have twelve reasons this season to stay indoors and fall in love.
Rating: 4/5

My Review:

Last year I read Let It Snow, and I loved it. So this year I wanted to read another Christmas book as it is my favourite time of the year. This was a bit different as it was 12 short stories where Let It Snow was three stories all told around the same time and they all tied in together. I kind of liked that a little more than this one. But I loved this one as well, just some stories I liked more than others.

Midnights by Rainbow Rowell
5/5

After reading Fangirl, I completely fell in love with Rainbow Rowell's writing. So to have her short story be the first, it had me hooked right away. I loved this one!! It was told minutes before midnight on New Year's Eve all in the span of 4 years about these two best friends who met on New Year's Eve in 2011.

The Lady & The Fox by Kelly Link
3.5/5

This one was interesting but also confusing. I liked it, but I was also very confused about one of the main characters. It's about a little girl who's mom is in prison in another country, every year she goes to stay with her mom's best friend for Christmas. There she mets this man outside the house who is a relative to the family. Every year she goes back she gets older, while he stays the same age and isn't allowed in the house and only comes out when it's snowing. It's very odd, but interesting.

Angels in the Snow by Matt De La Pena
4.5/5

I really loved this story!! It was very sweet, and had me hooked from the start. It's about a man who's cat-sitting for his boss while he's on holidays. The neighbour who lives above his boss has plumbing problems, and that's how they meet.

Polaris is Where You'll Find Me by Jenny Han
4/5

This one reminded me of Elf except with it's own spin. Santa takes in this little girl who gets left in his sleigh. She grows up in the North Pole with all the elves. The Elves in this story are tall, mystical creatures. The girl loves one of the elves, but she's very different so she's afraid to tell him her true feelings.

It's a Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins
5/5

This one was so cute!! This girl runs a YouTube channel where she makes animations and has friends and family to do the voiceovers. She has a special project in mind that might help her get into a school in Atlanta, and she needs the voice of a handsome man in flannel that works at the Christmas tree lot beside her apartment complex. I don't want to give anything away, but it's all very sweet. I loved both of these characters!

Your Temporary Santa by David Levithan
3/5

This one was about this guy trying to help his boyfriend's little sister to believe in Santa for a little while longer. So he dresses up as Santa (despite being Jewish) and goes over to their house in the middle of the night so the little girl can see him delivering presents. I liked this one! I love that it dealt with the guy doing what he can for his boyfriend's family.

Krampuslauf by Holly Black
2/5

This one started off okay, I was interested but it all took a very weird turn in the end. It's about these three friends, two of them are trying to help their one friend break up with her boyfriend who already has a girlfriend, making their friend "the other woman". So they invite him and his girlfriend and their friends to a party where they can all confront each other. The main character invites some random guy she meets who ends up being important later. I won't get into too much detail, but it got weird at the end and I was very confused.

What the hell have you done, Sophie Roth? by Gayle Forman
3/5

This one is about a girl who moved from New York to Texas to go to school on a scholarship. She doesn't fit in, and everyone calls her "big city". One night she's out on the campus watching Christmas carolers when she meets a guy who has a distain for them as well as her. They run off to a nearby diner and get to know one another. It was a cute story! Not my favourite, but it was alright.

Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus by Myra McEntire
4/5

I loved this one! It's about a boy who is known as the class troublemaker. One day one of his pranks go wrong and he ends up burning down a barn with a all the church's Christmas pageant supplies in it. Instead of getting charged, the pastor has him do community service and help with the Christmas pageant. The girl he likes, who is the pastor's daughter, is there and I love watching their relationship develop over the short period of time. Very sweet!

Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White
4/5

Another story I loved!! This one is about a girl who works in her family's diner who is itching to get over of her tiny Christmas town. Until one day her mom and stepdad have to hire a new chef as their other chef died of old age. This new chef has a knack for knowing what dishes to make that will make the people he's serving happy. It's a very sweet short story!

Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter
4/5

This one started off a bit shaky, but then got really good and I ended up really liking it. It's about a girl who graciously traded plane tickets with a foreign Icelandic girl who wants to go to New York instead of Bethlehem, Oklahoma. The girl just wants to get away and doesn't care where she's going. Only when she arrives the girl who's plane ticket she traded with, her boyfriend and his whole family is there to greet her. So the main character has to pretend she's the Icelandic girl, while the boyfriend plays along and helps her fit it. There's a little twist at the end, and I really liked it.

The Girl who woke the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
1/5

I'll be honest, I didn't finish this one. I can't even tell you what it was about. I couldn't get into it, and ended up skimming through it.

Overall, loved this book! Great book to read around Christmas time.
Have you read this one? What was your favourite short story?

Monday, 14 December 2015

My Top 10 Christmas Movies


Christmas is by far my favourite holiday of the year!! While the day itself is magical, the days leading up to the big day make it just as great. What I've loved doing this year is sitting down with a hot cup of peppermint tea and watching one of my favourite Christmas movies. I've been watching one movie a night for the past few days, and if I have some Christmas presents to wrap, this is usually when I like to wrap them.

So I thought I'd share my Top 10 Christmas movies. These aren't in any order as I'm horrible at picking favourites.

Arthur Christmas

Elf

Christmas Vacation

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

A Christmas Carol

Home Alone

Home Alone 2: Lost in New York

The Santa Clause

Love Actually

The Holiday


What are your favourite Christmas movies?

Sunday, 6 December 2015

In Real Life: My Journey to a Pixelated World - Book Review


Started: Nov 23, 2015 | Finished: Dec 5, 2015

In Real Life: My Journey to a Pixelated World by Joey Graceffea
Published by Atria/Keyword Press on May 19, 2015
Genre: Non-Fiction, Autobiography
Pages: 257
Book Edition: Paperback, Audiobook
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis: 
A confessional, uplifting memoir from the beloved YouTube personality.

It’s not where you begin that matters.

It's where you end up.


Twenty-three year old Joey Graceffa has captured the hearts of millions of teens and young adults through his playful, sweet, and inspirational YouTube presence (not to mention his sparkling eyes and perfect hair). Yet, Joey wasn’t always comfortable in his skin, and in this candid memoir, he thoughtfully looks back on his journey from pain to pride, self-doubt to self-acceptance.

To his fans, Joey is that best friend who always captures the brighter side of life but also isn’t afraid to get real. In the pages of his first book, he opens up about his years of struggling with family hardships and troubles at school, with cruel bullying and the sting of rejection. He tells of first loves and losses, embarrassing moments and surprising discoveries, loneliness, laughter, and life-changing forks in the road, showing us the incalculable value of finally finding and following your true passion in this world. Funny, warm-hearted, and inspiring, Joey Graceffa’s story is a welcome reminder that it’s not where you begin that matters, but where you end up.
Rating: 4/5

My Review:

First time I ever saw Joey was in one of Zoe's videos, and I immediately loved him! How could you not!! Since then I've been subscribed to his channel, and while I don't watch him as I do other YouTubers, I'm still a fan of his videos and wanted to learn more about him. Which is what you get in this autobiographical book.

I purchased his audiobook as well as the actual book as I like to do with books that are read by the author, so that I can follow along as they read their story to me. I absolutely loved this book and Joey's story! He's been through a lot to get to where he is now, and this book just made me love and respect him a whole lot more than I already did.

There's a tragic upbringing and how he handled it. There's his move to LA and how YouTube became a part of his life. There's his first experience with going out with boys for the first time and coming to terms with being gay. All these stories really shape Joey the person, and as a casual viewer of his, I loved getting to find out all about him. (I'm now scrolling through his channel and watching so many videos because I'm in a Joey love bubble!)

If you are a viewer of his in any way, you will want to pick up this book or get the audiobook if you'd like Joey to read you his story. It's amazing! Very happy that I read/listened to it. Good Job, Joey!!

Are you a viewer of Joey's? What are your thoughts on his book?

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Girl Online: On Tour - Book Review



Started: Nov 5, 2015 | Ended: Nov 21, 2015

Girl Online by Zoe Sugg
Published by Atria/Keywords on Oct 20, 2015
Genre: Contemporary
Pages: 338
Book Edition: Hardcover
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis:
The sequel to the number-one bestseller Girl Online. Penny joins her rock-star boyfriend, Noah, on his European music tour.

Penny's bags are packed.

When Noah invites Penny on his European music tour, she can't wait to spend time with her rock-god-tastic boyfriend.

But, between Noah's jam-packed schedule, less-than-welcoming bandmates and threatening messages from jealous fans, Penny wonders whether she's really cut out for life on tour. She can't help but miss her family, her best friend Elliot . . . and her blog, Girl Online.

Can Penny learn to balance life and love on the road, or will she lose everything in pursuit of the perfect summer?
Rating: 5/5

My Review:

Penny and Noah are back and still happily together as Noah prepares to go on tour with Penny coming with him. Between dealing with her anxiety and her boyfriend's busy schedule, Penny quickly learns that life on the road isn't easy. But along the way Penny gains new friends, as well as unwanted enemies that she wasn't prepared for. Can Penny handle life on tour?

As you guys know, I'm a huge fan of Zoe's so I was really excited for this book especially because I loved the first one. Zoe didn't disappoint, at least on my end. I really enjoyed this sequel. It was so nice to have all the characters back as well as some new characters (I love Larry!!). It was also nice to read moments that as a fan of Zoe's you can tell where she got inspiration for certain things throughout the book. I really loved this series!

I'm so proud of all Zoe is accomplishing right now. I can't wait to see what she comes up with next.

Have you read the Girl Online series? What your thoughts? Let me know in the comments.

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