A Month in Books

30 September 2013

It's the last day of September! I can't even believe how fast this month has passed! Another month is over and with that, so are some books that have been on my reading list since the beginning of the year!

In case you guys need to be refreshed, I have a reading goal this year to read 25 books. As it stand today I've read 17, and four out of that 17 were conquered this month! So I'm going to talk a little bit about these books, and if you want to keep up with my reading challenge, go ahead and add me as a friend on Goodreads, go ahead, I dare you.

2013 Reading Challenge

2013 Reading Challenge
Kate has read 17 books toward her goal of 25 books.
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There were a lot of books, so I'm going to try and make this brief, but informative. So without further adieu...

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner"
“I'm a Crank. I'm slowly going crazy. I keep wanting to chew off my own fingers and randomly kill people.” 

I already wrote a more detailed review of The Scorch Trials here, but I'm going to lay down some points as a bit of a refresher.

1. I'm sorry to those of you who love the book, but it was such a pain in the butt to into! It was just really boring up until about the last quarter of the book.
2. Love Brenda. Love Thomas and Brenda. There. I said it.
3. Even though it was slow-paced, there was a lot of character development, which I did enjoy.

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green
“As he read, I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.”

You can read my full review on Goodreads, here.

Here are some things I liked:

1. The book is about two teenagers who fall in love. Except wait, they both have cancer. Surprisingly, the book is not as depressing as you would think it should be.
2. John Green can capture the sarcasm, wit, and angst of a teenaged girl beautifully. This is both incredible and concerning. You might even say incredibly concerning? I kid.
3. Even though it's a love story, you get to see the character's relationships outside of the romance, which a lot of YA novels neglect to do.
4. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't excited about the movie adaptation (or that I'm following John Green on Tumblr just to get updates).

Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion
“We are where we are, however we got here. What matters is where we go next.” 

Head on over to Goodreads and check out my full review, here.

First impressions:
1. I've never read a zombie book before, but I have watched The Walking Dead, and the kind of zombies in this book are a lot different than the ones I've come to fear thanks to Rick and Daryl.
2. The whole book is narrated by "R" and there is a whole internal dialogue that occurs throughout the whole book. I've never really read a book like that before and I quite liked it. 
3. When a zombie eats a brain, they get that person's memories. It all makes sense now!
4. The time R spent in Julie's home was super precious. He is such a likeable character, which you never see when it comes to zombies.

So there you have it, folks! I hope you liked this little summing up session. This October, I have a few books on my to-be-read list that I will be reviewing during BLOGtober. If you'd like to join me, let me know!

My October reading list:

Let's Pretend This Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir) by Jenny Lawson
The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

See you tomorrow when BLOGtober starts!


That time I was almost on The Amazing Race (Canada)

27 September 2013

Hey guys! Happy Friday! I hope your weekends are fun-packed and exciting, mine will consist of working and going back to my hometown for a few days! Woo!
Anyways, remember when I went to my first Blue Jays game as a Torontonian? Well what I neglected to tell you about that day was that I was approached by a very attractive young man with one of those neat little carriage taxis. You know, the ones where you and your friend or special someone sit in the carriage and someone else drives it by holding onto the handles and running? Yeah, well this dreamboat of a man comes up to me and asks, "do you need a ride anywhere?". Now at this exact moment two things are running through my mind, first was, "holy crap this guy is cute, is he talking to me?" and the second one was, "don't trust him, he either wants to steal your money or is going to kidnap you". So I just kind of stared at him and smiled and said, "uh, um, no...thanks. Sorry" and ran walked calmly back to my group of friends.
In all honesty, I probably would have hopped on the carriage if I wasn't with a group of 20 friends heading to Starbucks. I could just imagine myself hopping on the carriage, pointing yonder and yelling, "to Starbucks!" looking back and my poor friends who had to walk the block and a half with their petty feet laughing maniacally shouting to them, "see ya later, suckers".  Instead I was too scared and ended up walking the block and a half, (which takes a really long time when everyone insists on walking together).
So as we're heading out of Starbucks I see another person running with a carriage and people sitting in the back. This time, it was a tiny young woman. And as she passed I looked over and saw, printed on the back of the carriage, "The Amazing Race Canada". Yeah, the cute guy was a contestant on The Amazing Race Canada and was needing my help to complete a task.
True story.

I totally could have been one of those background people in The Amazing Race! Which would have meant completing number 8 on The List!
Double bummer.

You better believe the next time someone with a carriage taxi asks if I want a ride somewhere, I'm going to say yes!

Also! Today I'm participating in Whitney's #backthatazzup Friday!

Pompeii by Bastille on Grooveshark


Have a great weekend guys! Let me know what you're up to this weekend! See you Monday!

Kickin' It Old School

26 September 2013

I have seen many a "Trowback Thursday" hashtag and I have to admit, I have participated in a few of those from time to time, but today I wanted to share with you guys something a little different. A little bit of the old school Kate...

Old school Kate took glamour shots with her smokin' hot mama!

She also had the cutest little elf ears and button nose...

As a child, Kate was always ready to take a picture, even when her cousins weren't.

Kate was also Peter Pan. She befriended Captain Hook for some time, but the relationship went sour when Hook tried to steal her Halloween candy. Blasted Pirates.

Kate was very into school sports. She organized her high school's annual hockey tournament against her high school's rival school. Her school won. Naturally.

Kate used to spend her spare time riding tricycles in Walmart as a brunette (she still does this, but she had to change her hair colour to avoid getting noticed).

 Finally, Kate also used to have short hair and a spray tan.
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ALSO! Guys, Starting October 1st I'll be doing something very exciting! I'm going to be blogging every single day in October! If you guys are interested in joining me, let me know so I can check out your blogs!

And if you would like to join, go ahead and add this snazzy button to your posts so I can find out who all participating!

Odd One Out

My cat is part of the feline mafia. True story.

24 September 2013

I love my cat dearly. Before I had Leia, I wasn't a cat person. I was a full-fledged "dogs rule, cats drool" gal until one day I saw her furry face looking at me with those cute little green eyes and I was smitten (with a kitten).

One of the reasons I adore Leia so is because of her hilarious personality. I mean, she's a dog. Like, drinks out of the toilet, plays catch, and barks, dog. She also pants, which I never knew was possible for cats until I saw Leia doing it. She is so kind and loves people though, which, as a dog person, I didn't think was possible. She loves to snuggle, and will try and give you kisses, and believe you me, if you don't accept them, she'll force them on you.
Said cute little green eyes.
Here's the thing though; like most cats, Leia can get a little temper mental. If I leave her alone for too long, didn't pay enough attention to her that day, or simply just left the house without saying goodbye, she does this little thing to let me know she's mad. And by little I mean completely disgusting, so readers beware. What Leia does, is she force-feeds herself to the point where she throws up whole food. And where she throws up the food let's you know just how mad she is. My roommate Jess is just learning to live with Leia, and yesterday morning she had her first puke experience...

Jess was getting ready to go to class in the morning and was rushing around getting all of her things sorted out before she left. Leia, seeing a perfect candidate for attention (and possible meal ticket) had been following her around the apartment like a little ninja (in that Jess hadn't seen her coming). Somewhere in between brewing coffee and grabbing an afternoon granola snack, Jess had accidentally locked Leia in the pantry and left for class. Twenty minutes later I was woken up by the sound of a cat in distress. My first thought of course was, "gosh, these stupid neighbours need to spay their cat", to which I was then almost immediately met with loud banging noises; at that moment I was certain someone was trying to break into my apartment. I slowly rose out of bed (to see what was the matter) and with my expert deductive reasoning skills resolved that the noise was neither a cat in heat, nor a robber, but poor Leia stuck in the closet.

Fast forward to yesterday evening after Jess and I had left to go to Rach's baby shower. Before I had left, I had fed Leia dinner and peaced out. We got back rather late so Jess and I headed straight to bed, but before I even had a chance to get in Jess burst into laughter and yelled at me to come to her room. What I saw next shocked and appalled me (viewer discretion advised).

Leia had not only thrown up her whole food on Jess' window ledge to inform her that she was indeed very mad that Jess had so thoughtlessly locked her in the pantry, but just in case it wasn't clear that it was Jess on her hit list, she decided to throw it all up in the shape of a "J'. 

I kid you not.
The evidence Jess took, and then posted on Facebook as proof.
It was at that very moment that I was certain my little Princess Leia (or Hima-Leia as I affectionately call her) was part of the feline mafia. Whisker-face. God-kitty. She made her mark, and she made it clear.

True story.

Jess had better sleep with one eye open from now on...

Baby!

23 September 2013

I'm going to be an aunt! Did I ever tell you guys that? 'Cause I'm super excited about it and can't wait for the little guy to get here!

Something I've never talked about it that I'm actually an only child, so I'll never actually be an aunt in the biological sense, but I do have some really close girlfriends, (4 to be exact). One I live with, and the other three's eggo's are preggo. Not Jess though. Thank goodness.

My best friend Rach (or Ray as I call her) is about to pop so tonight we are throwing her a very exciting baby showing (appropriately themed, "About To Pop"). Literally everything is a play-on-words for "pop". For example we are serving cake pops, Popeye's candy sticks, pop rocks, etc. It's pretty cool. I wish I could take credit for the idea but it totally wasn't.

Anyways, in celebration of the amazing little baby boy that is about to grace us with his presence, I'm posting some of my favourite bad baby pictures found on Awkward Family Photos.

Enjoy the laugh and have a great Tuesday!!











What I'm Listening To!

Happy Monday, folks! This weekend was a busy one for me as I worked literally 85% of it, and the other 25% was spent on the subway. No one told me that when I moved to Toronto I would need to wear more sensible footwear, I honestly have never had so many blisters in my life!

The light at the end of the tunnel was being able to catch the Emmy's last night with a nice cup of tea. Can we just take a moment to applaud Neil Patrick Harris' musical number in the middle of the show? It was great! Also, when Bob Newhart got a standing ovation and it brought him to tears. Oh! And let's not forgot the amazing dance number choreographed by the nominees of best choreography! I'm a reality TV junkie, so I must acknowledge that!!

Okay, so enough of that. I've been listening to a lot of music this weekend with all of the time that I've been spending on the subway, and I wanted to talk about it today!! Specifically, a great indie band from the land down under, Castlecomer.

I originally found Castlecomer on Youtube at the beginning of the summer while searching for a specific cover of The Lumineers' "Ho Hey". Suddenly I found myself listening to the incredible harmonies of this band (comprised of both family and friends), and falling in love with their sound. Plus, check out those cool filming locations around Sydney!

If you like The Lumineers and Mumford and Sons, you'll probably love Castlecomer, as they have a very similar rock/folk sound, with a bit of an Irish twist. Check out their Youtube page where they have some of their original music, and a lot of really amazing covers. And if you really like them, go ahead and pick up their new EP that was released back in July; it's on iTunes!


Enjoy the tunes, and let me know how your weekend was!


Thoughts on iOS7

20 September 2013

Okay, so I've given it enough time to sink in, and I think now's a good time to discuss the new iOS update.

By no means am I an expert on this kind of stuff, but I'm a consumer, so I think it's okay that I sort of "review" this new update.

First things first, the actual update itself took forever! Now I know a lot of people were all updating at one time, but I kept getting error after error. Finally, I was able to download the thing!


It took literally 3 hours, not 40 minutes like it said. Then once I had it downloaded, it kept me from installing for another hour. Hah.

So there's that. Anyway, now onto the fun stuff! There are a lot of new things about iOS 7, but I've picked out a few of my favourite (or least favourite parts).

First, the lock screen. It's a whole new style, and I really like it. I've never put a code on my phone because I didn't like having to type it in every time. Now however, I kind of like it. That's also me being totally fabulous at my friend Rach's wedding (I was the Maid of Honour, booyah!)


Next is the home screen! New icons, which are very sharp and snazzy. Even a cool new dock with lots of multi-tasking tools. Plus it comes with a nifty flashlight tool (about time, Apple). You can access the tool by just swiping up from the dock.


One of my favourite new things on the update was Photos app. Aside from the cool new icon, they have organized the photos through "Years", "Collections", and "Moments". It's like seeing a picture board of all your adventures!


Also, I'm totally loving the new weather app.


Something I'm not too keen about though is the calendar. I liked the colour coding that was on it before, and it just looks a little plain. The daily schedules are similar. Not great, but not horrible.


Another thing I'm not so sure I like, (likely because it's new and I'm like an old person when it comes to things changing) is the new keyboard. It's very modern and sleek, but I'm blind as a bat and I have a hard time reading the fonts (and the messages). Also Jess and I have created nicknames for a variety of people in our contacts using Emoji's. Hers is Mail Pig.


Some other features I find pretty cool are the multi-page tool in Safari, and the new Music app. PLUS all of my music is stored through AirStream, so I have a ton of extra space. Woo!



How many of you guys upgraded to the iOS7? I'm curious to know your thoughts on the new update, and if you've found any cool new things!



My New Addiction

19 September 2013

Is anyone else watching X Factor? I caught it on a whim last week and now I've sworn to never miss it! There is so much talent, and even more non-talent.


I'm going to be honest with you, I'm watching it as I type...

And can we just talk about how flawless Kelly Rowland is? Her face is literally perfect.


If you guys aren't watching it, go do that. Like, now.

Byeeee!

Wednesday blahs and The Oscars

18 September 2013

Is it really Wednesday already?

I went back home yesterday for the night and slept on my cousin's couch. I'd like to take this moment to share with you the fact that said couch was about the size of a sofa chair, and while sleeping on it I felt like I was Snow White sleeping in the Seven Dwarves' house. Needless to say, my back is in knots and I'm exhausted.

Plus it's Wednesday and this week has been so lame. On the plus side, last's night's episode of New Girl did not disappoint!


I figured today would be a good day to post an update of one of my goals! Get ready, because this list is going to be looooooong.

2013 Academy Award Nominees

[X] 5 Broken Cameras (Best Documentary)

[ ] A Royal Affair (Best Foreign Language Film- Denmark)

[X] Adam and Dog (Best Short Film [Animated])

[ ] Amour (Best Picture, Best Foreign Language Film- Austria, Best Original Screenplay)

[X] Anna Karenina (Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Music [Original Score], Best Production Design)

[X] Argo (Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Film Editing, Best Music [Original Score], Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing)

[X] Asad (Best Short Film [Live Action])

[X] Avengers, The (Best Visual Effects)

[ ] Beasts of the Southern Wild (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Adapted Screenplay)

[X] Brave (Best Animated Feature)

[X] Buzkashi Boys (Best Short Film [Live Action])

[ ] Chasing Ice (Best Music [Original Song])*song only

[X] Curfew (Best Short Film [Live Action])

[X] Death of a Shadow (Dood van een Schaduq) (Best Short Film [Live Action])

[X] Django Unchained (Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor, Best Cinematography, Best Sound Editing, Best Original Screenplay)

[ ] Flight (Best Actor, Best Original Screenplay)

[X] Frankenweenie (Best Animated Feature)

[X] Fresh Guacamole (Best Short Film [Animated])

[ ] Gatekeepers, The (Best Documentary)

[X] Head Over Heels (Best Short Film [Animated])

[X] Henry (Best Short Film [Live Action])

[ ] Hitchcock (best Makeup and Hairstyling)

[X] Hobbit, The: An Unexpected Journey (Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Visual Effects, Best Production Design)

[ ] How to Survive a Plague (Best Documentary)

[X] Impossible, The (Best Actress)

[ ] Inocente (Best Documentary Short)

[ ] Invisible War, The (Best Documentary)

[ ] Kings Point (Best Documentary Short)

[ ] Kon-Tiki (Best Foreign Language Film- Norway)

[X] Les Miserables (Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Music [Original Song], Best Production Design, Best Sound Mixing)

[X] Life of Pi (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Music [Original Score], Best Music [Original Song], Best Production Design, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects, Best Adapted Screenplay)

[X] Lincoln (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Music [Original Score], Best Production Design, Best Sound Mixing, Best Adapted Screenplay)

[X] Maggie Simpson in 'The Longest Daycare' (Best Short Film [Animated])

[ ] Master, The (Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress)

[X] Mirror, Mirror (Best Costume Design)

[ ] Mondays at Racie (Best Documentary Short)

[ ] Moonrise Kingdom (Best Original Screenplay)

[ ] No (Best Foreign Language Film- Chile)

[ ] Open Heart (Best Documentary Short)

[X] Paperman (Best Short Film [Animated])

[X] ParaNorman (Best Animated Feature)

[X] Pirates, The! Band of Misfits (Best Animated Feature)

[ ] Prometheus (Best Visual Effects)

[ ] Redemption (Best Documentary Short)

[X] Searching for Sugar Man (Best Documentary)

[X] Sessions, The (Best Supporting Actress)

[X] Silver Linings Playbook (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Film Editing, Best Adapted Screenplay)

[X] Skyfall (Best Cinematography, Best Music [Original Score], Best Music [Original Song], Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing)

[X] Snow White and the Huntsman (Best Costume Design, Best Visual Effects)

[X] Ted (Best Music [Original Song])*song only

[ ] War Witch (Best Foreign Language Film- Canada)

[X] Wreck-It Ralph (Best Animated Feature)

[ ] Zero Dark Thirty (Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Film Editing, Best Sound Editing, Best Original Screenplay


I've made a lot of progress! I think I can actually do it this year! I can't wait to check that goal off of the list, it makes me smile just thinking about it!

How has your week been?

Weekly Wishes

16 September 2013

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

I recently stumbled upon a blog the other day that had a really cool link-up that really excited me!

Melyssa is the blogger behind The Nectar Collective. She has a link-up called "Weekly Wishes" which helps inspire her, along with other people to accomplish goals of their own. Whether it's goals for the week, month, year, or even lifetime, Melyssa has created this incredible link-up to help us all as a community spur each other on.

Now as you know, I have a list of my own that I'm working to achieve this year, and I wouldn't want to pass up on an opportunity to spur others on (and have my confidence boosted), so I've decided to participate in this little link-up since it's so personal to my own blog.

Without further adieu, here (again) are my goals for this year:


If you're interested, go on over the Melyssa's and participate! Let me know if you did, I'd love to check out your goals as well!!


The Nectar Collective

5 Reasons Why I'm Excited for New Girl

As most of you know, I'm a bit of a fan of lists, and this week marks the premiere of New Girl's third season. If you have't seen the show, shame on you! Go watch it now!! The first season is available on Netflix, and the second season will be available to watch as of tomorrow! So go get on that!


Hey, even if you have seen it, head on over and watch last season's finale in preparation for the premiere tomorrow night (which is 9pm on FOX by the way).

Anyways, here are Five Reasons Why I'm Excited for New Girl, with the help of my favourite New Girl gifs:

1.  Schmidt.


One of my favourite things about New Girl are "Schmidtisms". "Schmidtisms" are lines and words that Shmidt has said over the past two seasons that have made him worthy of the "Douche Bag Jar. Like when Schmidt got Nick all dressed up for his date with Jess, and told him that when his date complimented him on his suit he needed to say, "I'm wearing Schmidt". 

2. Jess just gets me.


Out of all the shows I watch, and have ever watched, (which is heaps) I've never actually had a character get me. Anything she says sounds like it's come directly from my head and out of her mouth. And to be honest, I've exhausted all of my New Girl quotes from Seasons 1&2, and I need new material.

3. Hannah Simone is a Canuck!


Okay, I love Cece, she is incredibly loyal to her best friend, Jess, is hilarious, and has won the heart of Shmidt. But even more, I love Hannah Simone, the actress who plays her. She is from Toronto, and as if that isn't enough, she is also an alumni from my university, which makes me feel like I know her personally. I mean, we practically went to school together.

4. Nick Miller.

Okay, so he's a bit of an odd ball (um, same), he has a lousy job, is bad with his money, and is normally grumpier than the grumpy cat. But, he's just so adorable. Plus, this:

5. Jess & Nick. Sigh.

'Nuff said.

So, will you guys be watching New Girl tomorrow night? Let me know!








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