Toronto 2018: Toronto Zoo

On the first day in town, we actually didn’t go to EGLX yet but rather went for a day at the zoo. Normally, whenever we go to zoos, its pretty much a quick max 4 hour experience but Drew had mentioned that he was set for a full day there and other than a short lunch break, Toronto Zoo did have a lot to see and we stayed for about 7 hours. The highlight for Toronto Zoo which ends this weekend is saying goodbye to the Giant Pandas, who happen to be the first pandas born in Canada.

Toronto Zoo is pretty huge. It covers a lot of different continents. Due it still being in the winter schedule, it had a lot of empty spots so some areas like Africa was just a walk through the place and then checking out the pavilion. I think that is what sets it apart is that there are a few pavilions to go through for the more exotic animals and it gives it a lot more space to check out some cool birds and more.

Since this was a huge day and I have like 800 pictures or something, I’m going to trim it down to pictures that turned out well or animals that I found were pretty unique to this location.

And here you go! Not all of them are really that rare but its always a challenge to get pictures of animals because of how far away they are. A lot of really cool ones here in all the different areas plus a lot of them are various levels of endangered which really makes it worth it to see them protected. There was a ton more than what I have here from meerkats to sloths and all kinds of monkeys and a lot of fishes and frogs and snakes and other reptiles and insects. I could go on and on.

Toronto Zoo is really worth it to just see what they have. Not a lot of zoos have such a huge terrain with indoor pavilions and outside areas. It would be nice one year to visit when its the summer to see how its set up when a lot of the warm climate animals are back.

Plus, luck was really on our side for the zoo. A lot of times we would be right on time for feeding times or speaking by the carers of a certain animal. Sometimes, we’d double back and the animal would have woken up from their nap and started moving around. It was a really great time!


Sunday Lists: Resident Evil Franchise, Best to Worst

Video game adaptations is pretty huge. There aren’t a whole lot of successes but Resident Evil has been the franchise with quite the longevity. Whether you like Paul W.S. Anderson, are a gamer or a big fan of Mila Jovovich, Resident Evil has its appeal for some mindless entertainment especially in all its sequels. Being a fan of the franchise, I have my reasons to love everything that people may hate about it. While they have its flaws, the entertainment level is still there depending on the film. I’ll have a video game adaptations ranked or faves coming out soon as I build up on what I’ve seen.

Resident Evil (2002)

Resident Evil

The original Resident Evil is absolutely the best one out of these Resident Evil. Its a bit more slow burn and focuses more on horror than action while still having that balance and relates the most to the video game franchise that it is basing itself on. The sequence of events and the zombies and the transformation is the origin story of where it all began and how Mila Jovovich’s Alice starts. Of course, the starting point of Alice is really where the heart of this franchise lies and because of that, this takes top spot for creating this iconic female character with her one liners and her straight face. For some, it just seems like bad acting but over the franchise, its grown on me and I think it works so well with the character of Alice.

Resident Evil: Retribution (2012) Review

resident evil retribution

It took a few movies to get back the  fun of Resident Evil franchise back in order. Something always felt a little off but the movie to pump me back up was Resident Evil: Retribution. At this point, it was pretty much an action film. Alice is a bad-ass female character with all the weaponry she has. In this one, she wakes up in a facility that she learns is a replica of a beautiful life and soon meets up with some characters from the video game which has taken too long to show up in the movie. Its fun little action romp with over the top action and one liners. Perfection it is not but entertaining as heck.

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter (2017) Review

Resident Evil the final chapter

The Final Chapter makes it here because of its wonderful coming together of important cast members but also because it wraps up all the loose ends from the entire franchise to end the story for Alice. There’s still a lot of action and some suspense and pays homage to some scenes from the first film. Alice is great to watch and the cast works really well. With that said, going back to where it all started makes a great deal of sense for film and its always been the strongest location for the setting and the Red Queen has always been the strongest villain even more than any massive size and oddly morphed zombies would ever be.

Resident Evil: Extinction (2007)

Resident Evil: Extinction

To be honest, I’ve always ranked this third installment and the fourth on something of the same spectrum. They both have obvious flaws but fill a different purpose to the story with some iconic characters from the video game franchise coming in play. However, Extinction benefits from a change in setting to the desert where it shows how the world has suffered from the outbreak at Raccoon City.  It sets up the devastation that has swept across the world and how the Umbrella Corporation under the wings of Chairman Wesker and the science mission they have to try to fix the world lead by Dr. Isaacs comes into play and forms their roles. There is a look at all sides of the situation. Alice is incredibly cool here with her motorcycle and meets up with some fun characters. Action and something of a feel-good zombie film for the most. There are some dialogue issues but its starting to shape to what the next few movies embody.

Resident Evil: Afterlife (2010)

Resident Evil Afterlife

For almost the same reasons as Resident Evil: Extinction, I like this one. At this movie, I made a revelation that Alice’s outfits are almost as iconic as the entertainment value of the movie. Plus, its always impressive to see how extensive these mutated zombies can go. However, this movie doesn’t go so much into the zombies. This one is a fun one just because its the first movie after the first movie where Paul W.S. Anderson takes back the reins and we can really feel the tone that makes it very fun. At the same time, he seems to understand this gaming franchise so we see a lot more of the video game characters is. The story fits in with the direction the third set.

Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004)

Resident Evil: Apocalypse

The most forgettable of the live action franchise has to be the direct sequel of Resident Evil called Resident Evil Apocalypse. Alice is fantastic as always but the story itself felt forced and it lacked the entertainment value that the later movies that followed had. It seemed like they weren’t quite sure what direction to it.

Other Resident Evil films (not seen yet):

  • Resident Evil: Degeneration (animated 2008)
  • Resident Evil: Damnation (animated 2012)
  • Biohazard 4D-Executer (short film 2000)
  • Resident Evil: Vendetta (animated 2017)

Are you a fan of the Resident Evil franchise?
How would you rank this franchise from best to worst?

Pete’s Dragon (1977)

I reviewed Pete’s Dragon for the Ultimate 70s Blogathon as part of a double feature, but I never do double features for Disney films due to the segment I’m working on for Baking Through Disney. Baking is going to happen soon but meanwhile, I will keep these Disney film reviews going as I get back into the baking routine. I will however jump right back to watching the movies in order of release starting the next one, which should be Bambi.

With that said, let’s check this one out. If you already read it in the double feature, its the same one posted again here with slight additions.

Pete’s Dragon (1977)

Pete's Dragon

Director: Don Chaffey

Cast: Sean Marshall, Helen Reddy, Jim Dale, Mickey Rooney, Red Buttons, Shelley Winters

An orphan boy and his magical dragon come to town with his abusive adoptive parents in pursuit. – IMDB

Mary Poppins opened up a world of blending animated characters with real characters and to be fair, there’s a few segments in Pete’s Dragon that calls back to it, particularly the song and dance of I Saw A Dragon which has somewhat of a Chim Chiminey where the bar replaces the rooftop choreography. Its amazing how its taken so long to catch up with Pete’s Dragon and really not know too much about it. Pete’s Dragon is a fun little adventurous tale filled with friendship, family and packs in a decent amount of laughs and emotions, along with a lot of nice musical pieces.

Pete's Dragon

Being a fan of Mary Poppins, the appeal of Pete’s Dragon struck me almost instantaneously especially when Pete’s Dragon, Elliott is around quite a bit and he is designed fairly friendly with tufts of pink hair and wings contrasting with this green body which actually makes Elliott one of the most charming parts. Pete and Elliott’s friendship is an odd one and its also why for a good part of the film, no one actually believed him and took Elliott as something of an imaginary friend sort of deal, which of course, it wasn’t. In fact, Elliott actually parallels a little like Mary Poppins instead he is a dragon that helps kids in need and then moves on when his job is done. Which is pretty much what Mary Poppins does but she is much more there. Drawing comparisons to Mary Poppins a lot here because there was a strong sense of similarities between the two, however, being similar to Mary Poppins is a not a bad thing, in fact, its what makes Pete’s Dragon so much fun to watch.

Pete's Dragon

There is also a variety of other characters. The first being the lady who takes Pete in in times of need with his somewhat eccentric drunk dad who gets into a ton of shenanigans. The dad is played by Mickey Rooney which is quite a funny role. Aside from that, there are the bandit family who are the supposed adopted family of Pete who pretty much tries to capture him back so that he can be their slave. These guys are like the odd and somewhat stupid family who is trying to be mean. It is quite suitable for kids because perhaps for kids they will feel somewhat scary but we all know that they are never going to feel too threatening. And then, finally there are the con artists in the magician or healer character who travels around with his cures with his sidekick. All he cares about is money and he turns into the guy who tries to get Elliott. Because of both the dangers to Elliott and Pete, we can see their friendship as well as the adventure part be fit in tightly into this story and it works to its advantage.

Pete's Dragon

Pete’s Dragon is filled with musical segments. It definitely has a lot of really catchy songs. Some energetic and others soothing to listen to but all in all, rather positive messages all around. In fact, I’d like to think that Pete’s Dragon takes a look at finding a place to belong and not losing hope for a better tomorrow. Its a hopeful film and one that teaches a lot about friendship and just emotions in general as Pete leaves for the big world and faces the situations no matter how scared he actually is about not finding someplace to be and what to expect next. And that is essentially what makes Pete’s Dragon a nice little family film.

Now that I’ve seen the original, I wonder how the 2017 version would be especially probably with CGI for Elliott although I do think that part of the charm of the film was the drawn animations for Elliott.


Game Warp Podcast: 2017 Gaming in Review (with guest Insomnia Knights)

After a rather longer than usual hiatus due to the technical difficulties I’ve talked about  here before with my computer which does the video editing, we’re finally back with an overdue 2017 in review episode with our darling friend and guest Insomnia Knights. We talk about our thoughts on 2017 games and some games that stood out for us as well as some little tangents on Telltale Games and our feelings about the Nintendo Switch now that its finally released and has a few games released.

Do remember that this is 2 months after our recording. Better late than never, right?

Thanks for watching! Hope you enjoyed!
What are your thoughts on 2017 in Gaming?


My Weekly Adventures #61 New Segment, New Project & Fun Times

These adventures post always creeps up on me faster than I ever imagine. Its already March and the next Weekly Adventures will probably be right after my birthday! Another year older and the only thing I’ve realized is that I love being busy. This workaholic thing seems to just be a constant but I love every minute of this unpaid job. Its a constant learning curve whether it be here, or Avenue of Daydreams, Game Warp and well, an upcoming new project that my Game Warp co-host and I are brewing right now.

With that said, its the perfect spot to start the Weekly Adventures!

Battle of Ingredients is Back from Hiatus

Battle of Ingredients

After almost 4 months of hiatus, family and holiday vacations and such Phoebe and I have gotten back for a Battle of Ingredients round at the beginning of March. It was nice to get back into the groove of things. It was a slightly spontaneous and improvised version although we somehow did have an idea of what theme we wanted it to be. We have our next one set already and it most probably will be Easter themed. I’m not exactly sure what that entitles just yet but I have a few ideas and I will be discussing with Phoebe soon.

You can check out the latest edition of Battle of Ingredients HERE.

Toronto Trip

A few posts for the Toronto trip last weekend has already been going up. As usual, I headed down to meet up with Drew as a celebration for a successful Ultimate Decades Blogathon as well as just meet up to hang out. This year, we went to a gaming event called EGLX instead of the usual Toronto ComiCon. For myself, I didn’t get a press pass but going to gaming events is part of my Game Warp duties whenever I can. Joining us was my husband who is also the resident Stunt Gamer for Game Warp. Due to work conflicts, he never could go with me the last two years but this year, it was nice to have him hang out. He always likes to be more involved in my online blogging life so it was great to just all hang out and go have some fun.

Anyways, it was a ton of fun and I should have two more posts to go up for the main activities!

New Segment Launched

Wine Recap

New segments are just popping up non-stop over here, right? Didn’t I just announce one a little while ago? Anyways, this is another monthly feature, even though the first one covered two months. Either way, I’ve always been thinking about adding in some cocktail or wine segment here and its taken me two years to finally just take the step to do it. Now, its nothing professional since I don’t know a ton about wine appreciation lingo and my husband and I was just exploring and learning more about different wines and what works for us. This is a monthly segment which should go up around the 10th of each month. I had to find another day since the first weekend of the month is for Music Obsessions, Sunday Lists happen every other Sunday and the 1st and 15th are taken for Weekly Adventures. Monthly feature for this one and I’m really excited about it. It might say “wine” but I’ll have the occasional cocktail or liqueur or something there for fun.

With that said, this new segment is another step towards getting a little organization in the fresh direction that I’m trying to have right now. You can see new banners for everything popping up and a nice and more balanced versatility going on and I’m pretty happy with it all right now. I don’t see any new segments for a little while as I also don’t want to overwhelm myself either.

If you missed the first wine recap, its right HERE.

Upcoming New Project

I mentioned it at the beginning about this but a new project is in the works right now for me and Elwood. We just hate free time so we were chatting one time after our Game Warp recording session and got talking about movies and as spontaneous as how Game Warp started, we came up with a seasonal podcast idea. After some discussion, we decided to call it Movies & Tea. Anyways, we’re still working out a few little things but you could always hop over to our lovely Facebook page that we just set up to wait for our kickoff episode soonish. If you head over there, the cover photo should give you an idea of what the podcast structure will be every season. You can follow us on the Movies & Tea Facebook here.

Kitty Cute Pic (more like grouchy cat pic)


This wraps up this Weekly Adventures!
A lot of recaps and little announcements and such!

What have you all been up to?


Toronto 2018: Meals Recap!

Toronto is the closest haven for good Asian food. Of course, after last year’s success with Asian Legend for Drew, I started thinking up some spots to go to already. There were some changes in plans but in general, it all tastes pretty awesome and we had a few nice chats and some great drinks.

Lets check out where and what we ate!

Day 1 Dinner: Kinton Ramen, Markham

Kinton Ramen

Hogtown Ale, Sake Mojito and Bamboo

Kinton Ramen

Chicken Ramen

On the day we arrived in Toronto and even the day after, we had still some snowfall and what beats winter like eating some hot ramen. It helps that my husband was so excited to go. And when we got there and they had the whole Yakuza game soundtrack sort of music blasting, it was super good for everyone’s mood.

Day 2: Moxie’s Grill and Bar at CF Fairview



Starters: Sushi Cones


Half rack ribs

Hunger after a long day at the zoo and then some shopping took us to a more convenient location at the mall. We have had Moxie’s before in Markham and Vancouver and both experiences either left us with a sour taste from bad service or kind of average food for the price tag. The one at this Fairview mall however gets a thumbs up in both categories. It had some delicious food and pretty decent drinks.

Day 3: Korean Grill House in Markham

Korean Grill House

Cherry Blossom (Gin + Orange Juice)

Korean Grill House

Special Bibimbap (Spicy)

Korean Grill House

Chicken Bibimbap

The original plan was to do the whole Korean grill experience since my  husband hasn’t tried it before but since we were all fairly tired after EGLX, we ended up just going with some bibimbap. I personally love it a lot but wasn’t feeling quite as hungry so just took the chicken bibimbap. In the afterthought, I probably should have gotten beef but it still tasted fantastic. There was a choice to add on the spicy sauce but I didn’t take any. My husband on the other hand took the special bibimbap which had chicken, shrimp and beef and also added in one spoon of the spicy sauce.

Day 4 Brunch: Ding Tai Fung Restaurant

Ding Tai Fung Markham

Soup-filled Steam Dumplings

Ding Tai Fung Markham

Fried Rice

Ding Tai Fung Markham

Ding Tai Fung Markham

Ding Tai Fung Markham

Fried Pork Buns

To wrap things up, we went for a lovely little brunch at Ding Tai Fung for a little dim sum. Of course, there was no denying the soup-filled steamed dumplings because they are my faves. We also ordered a few other dumplings and such from the menu as well as a fried rice to wrap it all up. Everything still takes very good. I haven’t been here in 2 to 3 years and its nice to see the food quality still very much the way I remembered it.

Overall, a great foodie trip (as much as it was everything else)! 
We had some nice chats and tried some nice cocktails and beers.
Awesome company usually makes it even better!

Toronto still has lots of great food that we’re going to be trying out soon (or next year)!
The recap of our two main highlights of the trip are coming up!


P.S. I Still Love You (To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before #2) by Jenny Han

If you missed the review of To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, check it out here.

Rarely do I have back to back book reviews of the same series but To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before was so awesome that I couldn’t resist to finish up the sequel, P.S. I Still Love You. And here we are with the review.

P.S. I Still Love You
(To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before)
by: Jenny Han

p.s. i still love you

Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once? – Goodreads

Let’s just get this straight that P.S. I Still Love You is still quite the page turner. I finished it almost in one sitting and that is something that I haven’t done in quite a long time. However, as a sequel, this one does fall flat every once in a while. A few things going on here was fairly generic and I wasn’t particularly in agreement with some of the choices that Lara Jean made. But, one thing is for certain, Jenny Han writes and crafts some fantastic characters.

The Song sisters each are fun to read in their own way along with their dad in the little moments that they have. Lara Jean in particular is our girl here as the main character and she is very believable. 31 year old me may not agree with her choices but I still think back that 19 year old me in my first relationship when I had my first love and how I felt a lot of similar feelings. What is love, right? What is the right way to fall in love? Everyone approaches it differently and so does Lara Jean and Peter. Everyone also has their own burdens and baggage that they don’t want to share or just can’t.  It brings in the question of trust and loyalty. And its these traits that make them realistic and believable. Be it Lara Jean or Peter or the new addition, John. Its hard to wipe away the fact that they all are great to read and its even more apparent how well the characters are crafted and easy to connect to when their decisions evoke different feelings as I read it.

P.S. I Still Love You puts Lara Jean into a dilemma as she approaches her first real relationship. Its essentially the emotions of how much space to give and what type of girlfriend she wants to be and really how many barriers can you set or even how many rules can you make to prevent heartbreak? All these questions come together to craft up this first love and first relationship experience. Add in another love interest and neglect and lack of self-confidence and there you go. I mentioned before that this story has its faults of being generic but it delivers on being realistic although there are some aspects here that I don’t quite agree with. With that said, its more of a personal preference that I nitpick upon. It doesn’t wipe away the fact that this is a very fun novel to read.

Overall, P.S. I Still Love You is a worthy sequel. It lacks a little bit of the quirk and individuality that stood out in the first book, however its realistic and engaging characters definitely made this one a page turner.