December 28, 2012

Best Reads of 2012!

In December 2011 I set the goal to read 25 books in 2012. Well guys, I have surpassed this goal and am currently sitting at 32 books read. This really surprises me because, though I love to read, I'm a slow reader and previously did not read all that often.

I've decided to go through everything I've read this years and pick out my top 7 books (5 seemed to little, and 10 too much, lol.) Here we goooo...

7) World War Z by Max Brooks

Why I Liked It: It gives a different perspective to the whole zombie apocalypse story. You get to see how people from different walks of life deal with a zombie apocalypse. I'm not going to lie, this book did give me some zombie nightmares, lol.

6) A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

Why I Liked It: Well written. Well developed characters. Great story. At times a little too detailed, but definitely worth the time. It's one of those books that you will fight sleep to get further into —where you're reading with one eye open, barely awake, just to finish the chapter. I'm excited to start book no. 2 at some point in 2013!

5) The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Why I Liked It: The characters. Particularly Nick Carraway. I like that he's a main character, but that he somewhat sits on the sidelines and tells the story how it is. He's a genuine good person, as opposed to many of the other characters. I'm interested to see how the movie will turn out!

December 20, 2012

Tea Time!

As of late I've been trying to cut back on my coffee drinking. Though I love it, it often leads to an upset tummy. So my alternative go-to in the morning has been tea.

Usually I would just grab a cheap box of orange pekoe from the grocery store, but this past weekend a friend from back home was visiting and she gave me an earful about David's Tea. She's an employee at the company and I was amazed by her knowledge of tea. The people in those stores really do know their stuff!

I find when it comes to tea,
it's generally hit and miss. I'd been to David's Tea before, but hadn't quite found something I liked. Until this weekend that is...

July 15, 2012

Remember Me?

I just realized it's been about two and half months since my last post. I'm sure you were all wondering if I disappeared off the face of the planet. But don't you fret dear readers, I am doing well!

Here's a little of what I've been up to in the past few months:

The beginning of May was all about apartment hunting! Unlike many people though, I was rather lucky. I found my current apartment within a couple of weeks of looking.

At the end of May I went up north to Timmins to visit some family. It was a nice little trip since I don't get to escape the big city life all that often.

June 3rd I moved into my apartment. It's just a small bachelor apartment, but it suits me and Lucy just fine. It's still rather empty in furniture though. I'm really trying to budget on my furniture buying rather than just going all out and ending up broke.

I've been doing a little bit of studying here and there as my paralegal licensing exam is coming up at the beginning of August. Got any study tips for a girl who's been out of school for a bit?

I've been really trying to keep track on a budget. It's been a little difficult at times, but I have noticed I'm improving little by little. For example, I no longer buy a bus pass, which used to cost me $126. I walk to and from work, and I try to walk anywhere else I can. So far this month I've only spent $9 on tokens!

Further to my trying to save money, I've decided against getting internet at my new apartment. Rather, I'm putting that money towards my student loan so that I'm able to make double the required minimum payment every month. So this explains my lack of keeping up with this blog. Any internet access I get is from work, a coffee shop, or the library. You'd think living without internet at home would be difficult, but it's actually not all that bad!

I'm currently trying to train for a 5k run. There's a marathon in October that I want to sign up for - I'm going to do the 5k option though! I don't think I'd make it out of a full marathon alive, lol. I'm not a runner at all, so if you have any tips for me, please do share!

Between May to now I've finished reading two books: 1) Nightschool: The Weird Books, Vol. 2 by Svetlana Chmakova and A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin. I'm up to nineteen books read in 2012 so far, which is pretty good considering my goal is to read twenty-five!

So yeah, that's pretty much been me in a nutshell for the past two months or so.

What have you been up to?

May 5, 2012

Book Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Book: Cinder
Author: Marissa Meyer

I don't know about you, but I have a really soft spot for well-written young adult fiction. Sure, once in a blue moon I enjoy reading all that vampire junk that's being published left and right. But at the end of the day there's nothing quite like a book that is initially geared towards youth but is able to transcend different age groups because it is well-written. Cinder belongs to this group of YA fiction.

What's It About?
From Indigo website:

"Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth's fate hinges on one girl...
Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She's a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister's illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai's, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world's future." 

April 8, 2012

5 Things I'm No Longer Allowed to Buy

We all have at least one thing that we just can't seem to stop buying. For some it's clothes, shoes, bags, video games, etc.
Example: Shoe collection (not mine - I wish!)
Every so often we realize that our collection is getting quite out of hand and we declare a shopping freeze. However, we all know how easy it is to convince ourselves that we NEED that new pair of jeans or magazine.

My problem is that I have several different things that I can't seem to stop buying. Basically, I'm a shopaholic. But I recently realized that I need to stop buying certain things because I'm simply not using everything I already own — so why waste money buying more? The following are five things that I've decided I'm not allowed to buy UNTIL (I mean c'mon! I can't quit cold turkey forever! lol) I either get my paralegal license or my driver's license —whichever comes first.

February 24, 2012

Book Review — Middlesex

Book: Middlesex
Author: Jeffrey Eugenides

What's It About?
From the Indigo:
"I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day of January 1960; and then again as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974. My birth certificate lists my name as Calliope Helen Stephanides. My most recent driver's license records my frist name simply as Cal."
So begins the breathtaking story of Calliope Stephanides and three generation of the Greek-American Stephanides family who travel from a tiny village overlooking Mount Olympous in Asia Minor to Prohibition-era Detroit, witnessing its glory days as the Motor City, and the race riots of 1967, before they move out the tree-line streets of suburban Grosse Pointe, Michigan. To understand why Calliope is not like other girls, she has to uncover a guilty family secret and the astonishing genetic history that turns Callie into Cal, one the most audacious and wondrous narrators in contemporary fiction. 
Basically the book is about a hermaphrodite, named Cal (previously Calliope), who tells the story of how  his ancestry ultimately led to him being who he is. The narrator begins by telling the story of his grandparents, Desdemona and Lefty (brother and sister who become husband and wife), and later of his parents, Tessie and Milton (who are cousins).

February 13, 2012

Valentine's Day Swap

At the beginning of January, Amber over at A Little Pink in the Cornfields posted a tweet about a Valentine's Day blog swap that was in need of another Canadian participant. I'd never participated in a blog swap before so I thought this would be a great opportunity to get to know other bloggers out there. The only rule was that one was not to spend more than $10 (pre-postage) on the package. I think this is what made the whole experience the most fun - it required a lot of creativity to make your money go that far.

I quickly signed up at fabulous but evil and on January 20th I received an email that I would be doing my swap with the wonderful Jenny (from well shut the front door!). We started following one another on Twitter and "creeping" (lol) each other's blogs to get a feel for the type of things we each liked.