What’s Up & Adventures – August 2022

ADVENTURES – AUGUST 2022

Welcome to the adventures for August 2022. Honestly, I should just change this coming year into baby adventures more than anything. Considering I’m on maternity leave right now, there’s really nothing else in my life more important than taking care of my newborn and making sure the house doesn’t slip gradually into chaos. With that said, there were some nice little baby updates which includes no pictures and we did have family visit which is quite the unusual since we really haven’t seen anyone out of town since before the pandemic.

Baby Updates

Triple V had a few little adventures of his own. For one, he had his 2 month vaccinations which went as well as could be expected with both of his thighs getting vaccines for various illnesses. Despite some crying, he did calm down fairly quickly and fell asleep so I consider him quite the champ. Considering that this month, we’ve also experienced some crazy evenings with some intense crying and a hard time pinpointing what was the issue.

With that said, he also had his first medical check-up. Yay to our healthcare system where you can’t find a family doctor anymore so the 2-4 weeks check-up turned into a 2 months old check-up. Luckily, all is well and he is growing up quickly. Apparently, we have a “big baby”, which I’m pretty sure I didn’t need the doctor to tell me since he was pretty big in my belly already and then he waited until the last day so he spent some quality time growing before he hit the outside world.

On that front, we are getting in some more exercising. More that I’m taking him out for strolls when its not raining or heat wave. August has been rather abundant in those two fronts. However, its quite relaxing to get out of the house every now and then and get some fresh air. At least for myself, it feels like I’m getting a part of my own active lifestyle back. Its going to take a while but I’ll eventually get back there to some form.

Podcast Update

With that said, I guess I should mention a little update on the podcast which probably is the only thing really goin on track in the case of these projects. Podcast recording is gradually back in production. Much like my post before I went on leave announcing a semi-hiatus, I had pretty much said that it wouldn’t affect it to much and it didn’t since we created quite a bit of backlog for both Movies and Tea and Game Warp so its just a matter of getting those out one by one. I will get back to reposting those. In the meantime, you can always check out both podcasts on most podcast platforms. Those places will have the most recent updates.

As things calm down gradually hopefully, I am starting to think about getting that revamped version of my solo podcast off the ground again. I’m still working out how to approach the content but I have a solid list of topics for the episodes already and it will be really relevant. If my plans go well, you might see something soon-ish. I’m not so worried about recording as it is finding time to edit. I’ve been thinking about it more and more so it should at some point happen.

WHAT’S UP – AUGUST 2022

Books

Currently reading: The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han

As I spend more time at home now, I am gradually wanting to expand during baby’s naptime to do something other than watching TV so I’ve literally just cracked open The Summer I Turned Pretty. There’s not too much to say. My expectations for it: An equally entertaining time as Jenny Han’s previous book To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. Might be a tall order but hey, who knows, right?

Movies

  • Purple Hearts (2022, Review)
  • The Lorax (2012 rewatch, Review)
  • Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989 rewatch)
  • Wedding Season (2022, Review)
  • Bewitched (2005)
  • Porco Rosso (1992 rewatch, Review)
  • Look Both Ways (2022, Review)
  • Princess Mononoke (1997)
  • Inside The Mind of a Cat (2022)
  • Yokai Monsters: Spook Warfare (1968)

Packed with a few rewatches and some new films from Netflix for the most part, the movies I watched this month were relatively good. Netflix rom-coms are always about the same but then I did already write the reviews so you can check those out. Among that pack of films, Look Both Ways definitely stood out as its not exactly a rom-com. Other than that, I FINALLY watched Princess Mononoke which was a Studio Ghibli title that my friends have been hassling me about not having watched for years. You will hear my extended thoughts on that on Movies and Tea in a good while. For the most part, I really liked it for the scope of the film and compared it to Nausicaa and the Valley of the Wind but didn’t quite resonate with the characters as much. Wrapping up the month is a new Netflix documentary about cats called Inside The Mind of a Cat which was super fun to watch and gave me some terms to attach to cats and some extra knowledge that explains some of my own cat’s behavior.

TV

  • Boo, Bitch (Limited Series, 2022)
  • Twinkle Love Season 2怦然心動20嵗第二季
  • The Most Hated Man On The Internet (Limited Series 2022)
  • Never Have I Ever (Season 3)
  • Untold: The Girlfriend Who Didn’t Exist (2022)
  • Wonderland Season 2五十公里桃花塢2
  • I Hear You 最動聽的事
  • Bad Vegan: Fame. Fraud. Fugitives (2022)
  • The Puppet Master: Hunting The Ultimate Conman (2022)

Currently watching: I Just Killed My Dad, Great Escape Season 4 密室大逃脫第四季, The Oasis登錄圓魚洲, Love Between Fairy and Devil 蒼蘭訣, The Rap Of China中國説唱巔峰對決, Call Me By Fire 2 披荊斬棘的哥哥, Heart Signal Season 5心動的信號

I have to give myself a nice pat on the back for creating a decent mix between the Chinese drama and variety shows versus the English content, even if most of the English content are all limited series for Netflix crime documentaries. Its my latest thing that I’ve really liked seeing as Netflix has some pretty strong crime documentaries and are pretty consistent in quality. The four gave me an array of emotions: Most Hated Man was very upsetting and fit its title, Girlfriend Who Didn’t Exist was truly well done and had a nice message about forgiveness, Bad Vegan made me question whether someone would truly believe something like that or its all excuses (still contemplating that one) and Puppet Master was just a wild ride since its unbelievable how someone can get away doing that stuff.

Onto more lighthearted stuff, I had a ton of fun with teen series Boo, Bitch and Season 3 of Never Have I Ever. They were so entertaining and still had some pretty good moments. Both of those TV binges are almost done so you should see them soon. I lack of TV series review writing inspiration currently happening. As for Chinese series, a lot of the currently watching TV shows are about to end but man, Wonderland Season 2 was a such a great one. I didn’t watch the Season 2 so currently debating if I should, hopefully it isn’t under VIP since I don’t want to subscribe to another streaming service, although I probably will at one point to WeTV since I have a lot of series that is locked in VIP that I missed before and I don’t really like watching them on YouTube.

A fun update is that I’m currently watching Love Between Fairy and Devil (yes, the title is stupid but the series honestly isn’t) which will land on Netflix in September some time (I can’t remember the date so if you want to check out Chinese fantasy dramas, this one is good and not too long. Netflix has been doing a good job at picking up some of this year’s heavy hitters. Now, maybe they can also get Love Like The Galaxy, which is another breakout series currently playing which is on my watchlist.

Games

  • Spiritfarer: Farewell Edition

After starting up Spiritfarer last summer, I finally went back to it to play through the rest of the main content plus all the updates in 2 weeks. The updates were really great since the last one did give it such a well-rounded ending to the whole experience which adds so much to the narrative element of the game itself which plays a big part. There’s so much to love about Spiritfarer. Even though I finished the game with probably the most amount of hours and the closest I’ve ever gotten to 100% of the game content, I still am considering picking up this game at one point and revisiting it just for the beautiful world and stories that it tells.

What’s Up & Adventures – June 2022

June 2022 Adventures

If you hadn’t caught my mid-June announcement/update, you can find that HERE.

The biggest event of June which has consumed most of the month is that: I had a BABY BOY!

I’ve been kind of a bit hush hush on the whole thing on the blog and just dropping little hints about the nursery and such in the adventures post since the beginning of the year. Obviously, if no one read it then they probably never quite realized it was a thing in my life. It also explained the lesser amounts of posts in the past 8 months or so since the first trimester was just a fatigue filled sleep fest. I wanted to sleep all the time. With that said, I couldn’t complain a lot since I had a pretty smooth pregnancy with no cravings, almost no nausea or food aversions except for fish and nothing came back bad in any of the tests and checkups.

Where things started to go wrong was the actual birthing process where things got a little scary for a moment and didn’t go as planned resulting in a C-section. However, everything is so far so good and as I sit here recovering and the husband and I are on our maternity/parental leave , its been quite a journey for the past 2 weeks or so with a newborn. The surgery meant that I basically can’t do a whole lot of stuff except for caring for the baby without having a lot of discomfort. Luckily things are getting better day by day.

If you take a look at the announcement/update post, basically things will remain fairly slow for at least the next month or two. However, my other projects with my fantastic co-host who is holding down the fort and our hard work in creating a huge backlog in our production means those projects are still going out. If you ever want to hear some podcasts, Movies and Tea is currently in its Quentin Tarantino season and Game Warp is also having scatters of reviews and non-E3 2022 coverage.

To be fair, I haven’t had a vacation from work in the past 3 years (partially pandemic- related) so I’m taking the leave to relax a little and enjoy my time with my newborn, we nicknamed him Triple V so if I mention him again, may be under that name from now on.

Basically June’s adventures was half the month waiting to birth the baby and the second half is taking care of the baby. Its crazy how fast time goes by.

What’s Up – June 2022

Books

Currently reading: The Woman in Cabin 10

Recently started up The Woman in Cabin 10. Literally one chapter in so I will talk about it more next month. Maybe by then, I will have finished it.

Movies

  • My Neighbor Totoro (1988 rewatch)
  • The Night Clerk (2020)
  • Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark (2019)
  • Rogue (2007, Review)
  • Trust (2021, Review)
  • Bill Burr Presents: Friends Who Kill (2022)
  • Girl’s Revenge (2020, Review)
  • Cyber Hell: Exposing An Internet Horror (2022, Review)
  • Hellboy (2019)
  • Constantine (2005 rewatch)
  • The Tale of Princess Kaguya (2013)
  • Profile (2018)
  • Adrift (2018)

Sitting at home for maternity leave for the entire June gave time to catch on some movie watching (among many other things) especially before our baby arrived. I was able to catch up on some titles I hadn’t seen before. As usual, highlighted titles are the ones I personally recommend. Reviews are on the way for some of these. Special mention goes to 2007’s Rogue which was a ton of fun for a creature feature and Profile, a Screenlife title which I thought worked really well also. Much like Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark which was a fun little kids horror adaptation.

TV

  • Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (Part 3, Review)
  • Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (Part 4, Review)
  • The Floor is Lava (Season 2)
  • Riverdale (Season 2, Review)
  • Midnight Asia (Season 1)
  • Iron Chef: Quest For An Iron Legend (Season 1)
  • Yes I Do (喜歡你我也是, Season 3)
  • Riverdale (Season 3)
  • The Umbrella Academy (Season 2)
  • The Umbrella Academy (Season 3)
  • Camping Life (一起露營吧)

Currently binging: Day Breakers 暗夜行者, Nightflyers, Infinity and Beyond聲生不息, Love The Way You Are 愛情應該有的樣子, The Great Canadian Baking Show (Season 5)

With a ton of TV binges in the works right now from the past month, here we are. We started Nightflyers which was good but I had to stop as we hit a part of the series which triggered the pregnant me a little so we took a pause on that. Chinese variety shows were my jam with Infinity and Beyond taking the lead bringing back a ton of Cantopop nostalgia. Finished up Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and got back into Riverdale and now Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa seems to be haunting me as I look around and its just shows that he is working or worked on. Having never seen even one episode of Iron Chef, the Netflix version was so much fun. Highly recommend if you like cooking competition shows. Finally we finally caught up with The Umbrella Academy with the third season recently being released, no better time than now, right?

Games

  • How To Say Goodbye (Demo)
  • Paper Trail (Demo)
  • The Last Stop (Review)

Currently playing: Backbone, Lost Words: Beyond the Page

Gaming finally picks up again! Beginning of June saw the non-E3 2022 happen as Game Warp covered some out of our highlights from various showcases that peaked our interest. It also brought along Steam Fest which meant a lot of demos for upcoming indie games to check out. The two I played were How To Say Goodbye and Paper Trail. Both were pretty decent concepts although Paper Trail has a bit of the Gorogoa vibe except with paper as the item of manipulation, which I absolutely adored.

I am mostly catching up with Game Pass titles at this point. Last Stop left Game Pass at the end of June so I played it through. My first game review in eons is on the Game Warp blog if you wanted to check it out. I am focusing on smaller games and less brain involving ones so its why I put Backbone aside and started up a simpler word-based platformer Lost Words, which I had tried the demo before. About halfway through the game as this post goes up.

That’s it for this Adventures and What’s Up for June 2022!
What have you been up to?

What’s Up & Adventures – April 2022

Welcome to this month’s wrap up for What’s Up & Adventures for April 2022.

April is always a crazy month work-wise and adding in a lot of the current situation, its been a lot more bonkers as well. Hence the later than usual recap post. While adventures is a little lacking, we have been getting things together in general. Lets take a quick look at some fast updates before we jump into the much more interesting Wha’ts Up portion.

New Season – Movies and Tea Podcast

While I am still working through the reblogs for the previous season, Movies and Tea blog and our podcast platform everywhere is already updating the new season of the podcast as we go through our Quentin Tarantino season. For myself, its a whole new adventure since its almost three quarters first time watches.

You can check it out over at the blog HERE or on most podcast platforms.

Baby Things and Preparation

I have really held off on talking a whole lot about the pregnancy since my little not so hidden announcement at the beginning of the year or last month’s office move/nursery setup. As the nursery starts shaping up and my due date is a little over a month away and the last stretch of preparation shows up, its fine time to talk about something probably not so important but something I always thought was a somewhat memorable moment if and when I had a baby and its buying the first pair of shoes.

Not to mention, one of April’s highlights was going for the second ultrasound as the first one had a minor little abnormality which was all normal in this one. All around good news so far plus seeing the much bigger baby then was a pretty touching moment.

What’s Up – April 2022

Books

  • The Girl On The Train (Review)

Currently reading: Nevernight

Still relatively on track with reading as I try to use the commute to the office to read as much as I can. The Girl on the Train is a pretty decent read. I do hope to watch the adaptations at some point.

As for the currently reading selection, Nevernight has a world building which is pretty extensive but there are some elements that I am finding a little annoying. I am still fairly early in the book so I don’t want to make any judgments quite yet especially since beginning of books are my usual hurdle.

Movies

  • Virus (1999)
  • You vs. Wild: Out Cold (2021)
  • Ronny Chieng: Speakeasy (2022)
  • The Mitchells vs. The Machines (2021, Review)
  • Desperado (1995)
  • Knives Out (2019, Review)
  • Rebecca (2020)
  • The Invisible Man (2020, Review)
  • The Sadness (2021, Review)
  • The Crazies (2010, Review)

Movies are still going relatively strong this month. Even the writing is pretty on track as well. The movie reviewing writing slump is slowly going away. With that said, this month was full of fun film discoveries from all genres. Nothing really disappointed too much except one or two. The interactive film You Vs The Wild: Out Cold was kind of a snoozefest but these things are never too long so it helps fill up some time when I couldn’t decide what to watch next. As for recommendations for this month, Knives Out, The Mitchells vs. The Machines and The Invisible. If you don’t mind a massive trigger warning and gut-wrenching gorefest, The Sadness is a decent choice as well.

TV

  • Another Me (2019)
  • Archive 81 (2022, Review)
  • Falling Into Your Smile (2021)
  • Bullsh*t The Game Show (2022)

Currently watching: Yes I Do (Season 3), Who’s The Murderer (Season 7), Gypsy, Falling in Love With a Scientist, Infinity and Beyond

Looking at the TV list, it sure feels like eons ago that I finished Another Me at the first half of the month. Probably because the TV series had a lot of issues for the most part and hit a whole new level of melodrama that started bothering me. The ending did kind of redeem itself a little though. The film version which I have yet to see did get lots of praise so I will hopefully watch it at some point.

With that said, Archive 81 is a cliffhanger ending and cancelled Netflix series which is somewhat of a pity since it is pretty good. Netflix did add Falling Into Your Smile which is a Chinese drama that I had my eye on last year but its from a channel which geo-locked the series when I wanted to watch it. Highly recommend. This might just be the series for me to get back into some form of TV binge for the Chinese dramas since I am so behind on it.

Games

  • Erica
  • Football Game

A light gaming month to say the least. Both of these games were fairly short in content. Erica is an FMV game which is basically an interactive film with 4 endings running at around 2 hours per run. Considering that I didn’t do the run again and did some research and think the ending I got was the good one, I just left it at that. The second game, Football Game is a short point and click game which is a little bit laborous with little favors and tasks which all comes down to a deeper story for the thriller as it came to a rather vague but depressing ending. I will try to get a review up for these two over at Game Warp but its a daunting since game reviews have fallen into the abyss for myself.

Cute Kitty Pic

That’s it for this Adventures and What’s Up for April 2022.
Hope you enjoyed! Let me know if you’ve been up to some exciting stuff.

My Adventures & What’s Up – March 2022

Weekly Adventures – March 2022

Nothing much happened in March. March basically included a lot of cleaning and tidying. I did work on some of those “2022 Upcoming Plans”, one of which is I’d say 80% done at this point. Since I haven’t been super vocal about being pregnant or sharing my experiences despite the blog slowing down a whole lot. The goal I’m talking about for this year to move the office and set up the nursery is the only thing that is happening as the due date gets closer. However, that’s personal stuff and other than acknowledging it quickly, I don’t want to post up any photos of it since its still a work in progress. My adventures basically has to do with being pregnant which is not exactly exciting to talk about other than my own experience of it. The other part is mostly job and then my constant contemplation on eating healthier and really starting to miss some of the stuff that I’ve cut out of my diet to be healthier. That’s basically it in that department. Oh right, and I also just turned 36! Isn’t that exciting, right?

Now moving on to more fun things like the next part, What’s Up for the past month!

What’s Up – March 2022

Books

  • The Handmaid’s Tale (Review)
  • Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles #2) (Review)

Currently reading: The Magician’s Nephew (re-read), The Girl On The Train

Finally some progress in the Goodreads Reading Challenge this year! It was a slow start but now I’ve been motivated to move from one book to the next and get those reviews up as soon as I finish to keep things rolling. Scarlet was a really fun read. I guess taking a break from YA novels was a great move since I did appreciate the easier reads. The basic system now is alternating between YA books and older books. I should start adding classics to it but it will probably happen later this year.

Movies

  • Time (2021, Review)
  • Ms. Pat: Y’All Wanna Hear Something Crazy (2022)
  • Piranha 3D (2010)
  • American Girl (2021, Review)
  • Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022, Review)
  • Great White (2021)
  • The Bay (2012)
  • Catherine Cohen: The Twist?… She’s Gorgeous (2022)
  • Crawl (2019, rewatch Review)
  • Jaws (1975, rewatch)
  • Secretary (2002)
  • Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City (2021)
  • In The Cut (2003)

As Movies and Tea focuses on the next season of production, a lot of these movies are a part of that. In a perfect world, I did want to get at least one more double feature out before this recap post went up but oh well, what can we do? Movies was a decent month. Other than my not so happy outing with Piranha 3D, everything was pretty decent overall. Some was a little disappointing like Great White, a few surprises like The Bay, some exceeded expectations like Time and then some lived up to expectations (in a good way) like Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City. It did feel great to catch up with some older films that I have heard great things about like Secretary and finally returned to watch a Meg Ryan film. If you have been here in the earlier days, I really love Meg Ryan and have been wanting to go through all her films but Netflix is usually a bit thin on that front.

TV

  • Love Under The Full Moon (2021)
  • RuPaul’s Drag Race (Season 7, 2015)
  • The King’s Avatar (2019 rewatch)
  • Is It Cake? (Season 1, 2022)
  • Light The Night (Part 3, 2022)
  • Bridgerton (Season 2, 2022 Review)
  • Fresh Fried & Crispy (Season 1, 2021)

Currently watching: Who’s The Murderer (Season 7), Another Me

Looking at the list, I didn’t even realize how much TV I have watched. To be fair, I had 4 episodes left of Love Under The Full Moon when I started the month so not exactly hard to complete. The King’s Avatar was a rewatch basically because I think its a great choice as background content but also a great choice as a kickoff for my podcast concept which I promise is going into production soon. A little tired of my own procrastination. Just overthinking the whole thing at this point. Highlight of this month goes to Light The Night Part 3, the anticipation and wait was pretty worth it. Netflix will never see this but if they do, please don’t split a complete series into 3 parts. Its really pointless. Bridgerton Season 2 was also a bingeworthy watch considering I watched it over a weekend.

Games

  • Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master!
  • The Dark Pictures Anthology: House of Ashes
  • A Memoir Blue

Currently playing: Bloodroots

Even gaming had a lot of progress. I did play The Drum Master for the longest time but finally stopped when I hit a bug that kept shutting off the game on its own. A Memoir Blue is a one sitting simplistic narrative game that was pretty heartfelt and fits the Game Pass really well. The highlight is definitely House Of Ashes which I streamed shared story mode with my friend BrandelSavage. We do plan to play it again since there seems to be a few other paths to explore. I will also replay it on my own. Maybe on stream, who knows. I do want to start streaming which was also on my goals for this year especially since my office is moved, the only issue is that its now in open space so need to reconsider when to stream.

I guess this whole recap explains why I haven’t had adventures considering how abundant everything is. Its been pretty fun overall. April will be crazy work phase so expect a big drop in the next month although I also have some planning to do for this next month to get things ready in advance as much as I can.

Cute Kitty Pic

That’s it for this Adventures and What’s Up for March 2022!
What have you been up to?

What’s Up & Adventures – January 2022

Welcome to 2022’s first adventures post and its all new and shiny. If you missed the 2022 Upcoming Plans post, this year I’m trying out combining the What’s Up and Adventures. With the current state this month of Montreal, Adventures are rather thin although I’m going on a completely new journey internally and physically so that’s something. With that said, Adventures to begin and then we’ll wrap up with the What’s Up at the end for a monthly round-up of the books, films, games and TV that I checked out.

Letterboxd Year in Review

Films Logged: 219
Hours Watched: 472
Most Watched Actor: Samuel L. Jackson
Most Watched Director: Quentin Tarantino

Letterboxd Year in Review always arrives later than the year-end recap so here’s a quick overview of some of the stats there.

Booster Shot

Booster shot is done! It went much smoother than the second dose to my surprise. I was pretty happy about it though since it meant that I could still do some stuff during the weekend as I recuperated. Not much to say there. I just had a little pain in my upper arm and that’s about it.

11th Blogiversary

Its been 11 years of blogging with this blog! There’s been lots of ups and down in life and also a lot of changes in content and more projects coming and going. I had some plans for the blogiversary that kind of fell apart. There’s just a whole lot to be thankful for and really happy with how I’ve built this space even if sometimes it feels like blogging is a lot less popular and the familiar bloggers are slowly less and less everyday. Either way, I’m excited for this new year. Lots of fun stuff coming up that I’m just having a hard time getting off the ground mostly because of work deadlines and lots of overtime but that’s slightly better now so hopefully you will be seeing more frequency on the posting front!

What’s Up- January 2022

Welcome to the new style for the What’s Up as it pairs with the Adventures post! This time around I will leave most of the actual opinions to the reviews themselves which will be released within a month of completion for the most part. Might be a slow start yet again due to work schedule for this month however everything’s partially written. I usually do highlights as well for this section to share what I think stood out to me. In this new one, the titles will be in bold for those that I particularly feel is worth your time.

Books: Nothing yet. Books in transition to a new shelf.

Films:

  • The Birds (1963)
  • 6 Years (2015, Review)
  • All The Bright Places (2020, Review)
  • Howl’s Moving Castle (rewatch, 2004)
  • Booksmart (2019, Review)
  • Carrie Pilby (2016, Review)
  • Kingdom of the Spiders (1977)
  • Poupelle of Chimney Town (2021, Review)
  • Alligator (1980)
  • Dude (2018, Review)
  • Every Day (2018, Review)
  • The F*ck-It List (2020)
  • Aziz Ansari: Nightclub Comedian (2022)

TV:

  • Light The Night (華燈初上, Part 1&2)
  • Voir (Season 1, 2021)
  • I Know What You Did Last Summer (Season 1, 2021) Review
  • Love At Night (夜色暗涌時, 2021)
  • The Silent Sea (Season 1, 2021)
  • Deadly Class (Season 1, 2018)
  • Too Hot To Handle (Season 3, 2022)
  • The Wheel of Time (Season 1, 2021)
  • The World of Fantasy (靈域, 2021)
  • Hellbound (Season 1, 2021)

Currently binging: Shining For One Thing (一閃一閃亮星星, 2022)

Games: Currently playing: Genesis Noir

Cute Kitty Pic

That’s it for this Adventures and What’s Up recap!
Hope you enjoyed it!
What have you been up to?

My November Adventures 2021!

Wow! November is already done! Some things wrapped up and the final film festival coverage wrapped up for this year already. A lot of little preparations went up and some more thinking started for next year’s plans. Basically a month with a few things that are too early to talk about but still a few overviews to work on.

Halloween Marathon Extended Done!

Last month, I made the executive decision to extend the Halloween marathon. Suffice to say that the big part of it was a fail however, it did give it a chance to align with the final film festival coverage of the year which had a few horror titles to add in. With that said, the next marathon is just around the corner so let’s hope that it goes better than this one.

Still, for those interested in the Halloween horror marathon list, its been updated on the menu already right HERE.

Blood In The Snow Film Festival

Blood in the Snow Film Festival was the final film festival coverage for us. There’s nothing else after this for the rest of the year as we head into the holidays and a lot of other housekeeping and year-end round-ups start up. The remote coverage for their on location film festival portion was pretty nice. I covered all the full-length features and due to time constraints didn’t get around to any of the short films. If you checked out the Halloween marathon link above than its essentially the same in part. However here are the films covered from my favorite to the least enjoyable:

Restaurant: 1930 Shanghai

After craving some soup-filled dumplings aka Xiao Long Bao for an entire month, I finally got to go try out this restaurant on location. I’ve only had them last year takeout. It was still great but the travel time does take away from the fresh hot element. I forgot to take pictures of the pan-fried dumplings but they were all pretty good. I do think that the pan-fried combination of chicken and cabbage wasn’t too great and the juicy sweet pork dumplings were a tad on the too sweet side and preferred the classic soup-filled dumplings and the pan-fried leek, pork and shrimp ones. These two were very delicious.

Announcement: Holidays Marathon

December is here and with that the holidays marathon. A little change this year due to the simple lack of material tp cover at the current moment that I am interested in and some other year end stuff to deal with so will probably start the 10th which gives it two weeks and possibly run further into before new year’s if there is suddenly more films to cover.

The Coming Plans Update (follow-up from last month…)

Last month, I had mentioned the possibility of talking more about my current predicament that is causing the whole lower frequency in posting, etc. However, after some thought, I wanted to talk about for the new year with my new plans. Give it another month to settle down and have some better routine before I talk about it. However, with that said, this so-called new routine is breaking in fairly well. It doesn’t reflect too much in the posting as I am still getting back into the groove but its definitely looking up. Either way, we will see in the coming month. But boy do I have some news for the New Year. Since let’s face it, December round-up is mostly year-end overview things and holiday stuff.

That’s it for the November adventures!
Not exactly any adventures to talk about but its kind of nice to get some stuff out of the way.
How has your November been?

My October Adventures!

Welcome to October Adventures! I’m going to say this right now…October was an adventure in some ways but nothing that I can really talk about here yet. Its some real life stuff that I’m working through right now which did cause some hiccups in the original blogging plans and well, the many festivals that happened to pop up with their last minute accreditation approvals so it was a little wild in general. Call this an update on the original commitments as a lot of stuff didn’t go as planned, but here we go!

Halloween/Horror Marathon – Extended

First things first, the main focus of October was the Halloween Marathon. Suffice to say, I stopped about halfway through the month and then switched gears into other commitments. Some did match the theme more than others but overall, I will talk about some little things happening potentially next month. Right now, I’m still working through it. However, because Halloween Marathon aka Horror Marathon is a big part of my year and I don’t want to cheat my way out of it as I haven’t even completed the main feature franchise film reviews, I’m going to be extending it for another 2 weeks or so to make up for the second half of the month. I still have some other reviews to wrap up which I will talk about in other sections of this update but it will be potentially going on simultaneously as I get rid of all the backlog in terms of movie reviews and festival coverage.

50th edition – Festival du Nouveau Cinema Overview

The first festival coverage to give me accreditation the day that it started was FNC 2021. Now, I’ve covered Festival du Nouveau Cinema a few years already and they have some great movies most of the time. Very arthouse and different from my normal wheelhouse including some Oscar nominated films even, however, the last minute thing threw me for a loop. Its not exactly anyone’s fault but my own since I lost track of what festivals I had applied for so didn’t realize that everything was clashing together. With that said, I truly did want to get more done for this festival however, due to work and life reasons, this festival was the one that suffered the most. It also occurred to me that this festival might truly be above my capabilities anymore as a lot of films while intriguing, its a sea of so many unknowns that in the process of decision-making, its a fear of choosing something that I didn’t like that worried me the most, causing less films being chosen as well.

However, I am still sitting on a few films that I haven’t reviewed yet. You can check out the films I have reviewed to this point. I did pick some pretty fun ones.

Compartment No.6
Bound
The Noise of Engines
Wood and Water
Days

I still have a short films compilation as well as two reviews coming up soon.

Toronto After Dark Film Festival 2021

Toronto After Dark ran for a swift 5 days event. This is the first year that I got the full media accreditation and not only short films (which is what I got in 2019). In all my festival coverage time, I do feel that TADFF has the best press support team. I had issues with the virtual platform and they helped me out immediately that evening. Plus, the press coordinator was pretty cool and did check on likes and dislikes from the festival which I hadn’t got in other festivals before. A really lovely experience overall. The technical issues did set my coverage plans a little behind but I did end up catching everything that I intended on watching. With this being horror film focus during October, it did have priority during those few days and there were some fantastic discoveries.

You can check out the reviews below:

Canadian Shorts After Dark
Sweetie, You Won’t Believe It
Post Mortem
Nightshooters
Ditched
The Free Fall

Blood in the Snow Film Festival

The final film festival to come in is Blood in the Snow Film Festival! Now, this one is a little unique as it has its virtual platform at as a three day event at the end of October. Suffice to say, no reviews have been posted considering the delay on my reviews over this weekend however, they will be coming up soon. There are a few films that I’ve reviewed previously so there’s only a few movies for this part.

However, this festival does have its on location festival (of course, I’m covering remotely as I’m not in Toronto) during November 18 to 23 which I will have reviews up for that line-up probably around mid-November. It might be the final wrap-up for the extended Halloween marathon as it seems to fit. If you are in Toronto, you can see if you want to go check it out. The line-up is on the website: bloodinthesnow.ca

Tranquil Dreams Podcast – Hiatus

As a final update, due to just everything going on, I’ve decided to put the Tranquil Dreams podcast on hiatus for now. I have other projects going on and coverage and its just too much at the moment. Plus, I’m not too happy with the What’s Up structure that I’ve been doing. I want to really focus on creating some shows that highlight my initial idea of why I wanted to start the podcast in the first place. Its going on hiatus so that I can get it back on the drawing board. Get some ideas and structure set and bring it back with content that I think will be more fun to record and more interesting in general.

ON THE SIDE NOTE: If you are looking for podcasts, I’m still co-hosting Movies and Tea and Game Warp with Elwood so you can still find them on most platforms where you can listen to podcasts. Movies and Tea is in its female directors season so you can check out which directors and their respective films made it on our list for this season.

A Little Life Update
(one of the reasons for the slowdown this month)

So…the last two updates I’ve talked about not feeling too good overall and its been truly taking a toll on me. As much as I want to keep the blog running as it did, I’m slowing down to focus on myself a little bit. Most of it is restructuring my lifestyle a little and getting back to some form of routine. Its working for the most part as you can see that I’ve been posting a little more frequently lately. However, I have decided to change my sleeping routine (aka sleep earlier) and get back to some healthy lifestyle with more workouts and healthier eating. This stuff all takes more prep time and dedication so more time there means less time for the blog. I am finding my routine over this month so its been going rather on track. That’s all I’m going to say for now but that is one of the main reasons.

I’m hoping that November will have some more normalcy in posting. The goal is to get a post up every other day. I’m definitely not lacking in content to write, but I just need to find time to do it.

That’s it for this October “Adventures”!
Hope you all had a Happy Halloween!
I sure hope everyone’s month has been much more exciting and healthier and feel good!

My May Adventures!

Its hard to believe that we’ve already finished 5 months of 2021. Its been a pretty wild beginning of the year in all aspects. Things definitely feel like its slowly getting back to some form of normalcy. I’m hoping that I didn’t jinx anything especially in terms of work. This month has been quite the slow month in terms of post and one where I needed to just remind myself that I needed to be okay with slowing down blogging to get the real life stuff done. With that said, I’m slowly getting back into the groove of things and yet again, playing a little bit of catch up again by the end of the May. Not a whole lot happened since the last weekend (the past Friday) just allowed to travel inter-regions so hiking has started yet so its been very focused around the home. Either way, lets check it out!

Workout

May 2: Walk 1.17km/14 mins
May 8: Walk 3.79km/42 mins
May 9: Walk 2.17km/25 mins
May 14: Walk 3.97km/43mins
May 16: Walk 1.11km/14mins
May 21: Walk 3.13km/34mins
May 22: Walk 1.09km/15mins
May 23: Walk 2.12km/26mins
May 24: Walk 2.33km/28mins
May 28: Walk 2.10km/25mins
May 29: Walk 1.59kkm/20mins

Nothing much to say this time. I’ve been having slight sleeping issues. Not exactly insomnia but just maybe a little stress and anxiety so affecting sleep so energy level is a bit low making the running not going right away. Plus, we’ve had a pretty hot May in general so as I dig out all my running gear. I decided to maintain walking at the minimum whenever I could (within curfew hours). Curfew was lifted this past weekend also meaning that I can now go for more walks as daylight is a little longer and eventually get back to running as well as hiking.

Garden Centre Haul

We went to the garden center earlier this year to hopefully get a few more plants. Things are definitely back to normal this year as there is a wild assortment of different vegetables and herbs. With a slight expansion of the garden, we’re hoping to plant more although some of these are going into containers and being planted indoors since the zonage doesn’t work either. With that said, I’m fairly certain it won’t be the only trip to the garden center as the front yard didn’t seem to enjoy the abnormal weather fluctuations and a few plants haven’t popped up yet so its a perfect chance to rearrange it and hopefully do a little change to make it look better. Also, I’m seeing what I can do to add borders so that the plants don’t get accidentally mowed when they aren’t in blooming season.

1st Dose of COVID-19 Vaccination

After a few months of the vaccination campaign, my age group finally was opened in May and the fastest that I could get on a weekend and not affecting work too much was on May 29th for the 1st dose. Overall, it was a decent reaction as I only had arm pain but it wasn’t anything too intense. It probably hurt the most at night but gradually subsided over the next day. I had talked to some others and they talks about staying hydrated being a big part of it and keeping the arm moving. Nothing too intense in terms of movement but just keep blood circulation going and whatnot. Not sure if that contributed it to not having a bigger reaction but a little of my own experience in case you haven’t gotten the first dose yet. My second dose is in mid-September so its a little way away. Still, its a first step.

Optometrist Check-Up

Its been a tad overdue for all kinds of check-up in general due to the pandemic so I’m slowly getting everything back on track. After a year of way too much time in front of the PC for everything including an immense amount of time doing overtime, I decided that I needed to get an eye check-up since my eyes have been not feeling too great so wondering whether I needed new glasses plus, there’s some weird scratches on the glasses and the frames are losing color so I figured I should get some new frames. Good news is that my eyes didn’t get any worse and overall pretty healthy just astigmatism went up a tiny bit. The second which is good and bad is that I got some new glasses even though I haven’t paid so much for glasses as I would get them out of province but seeing as traveling restrictions, I had no choice. However, I did find glasses that I really like. It’ll be a little while until I get them so next month’s adventures will probably be when I give an update on it.

Cute Kitty Pic

That’s it for this month’s Adventures!
What have you been up to?
Has the pandemic situation wherever you are doing better overall?

My April 2021 Adventures!

Welcome to the April 2021 Adventures! Its a tad later than usual. I have a pretty good reason is that: nothing really happened in April except work and a lot of work and then overtime and….a whole lot of nothing else. So I was debating whether to release the post. But you know what, I did get back on track with something and whatnot so I’m going to just do quick one and share some updates.

Workout

Apr.9: Run 4.35km
Apr.10: Walk 15mins.
Apr. 11: Abs Workout
Apr. 14: 34 mins/3.09km walk
Apr. 17: 30 mins/2.41km walk
Apr. 18: 53 mins/4.39 km walk
Apr. 24: 28 mins/2.58km walk
Apr. 25: 13 mins/1.22 km walk

The biggest change in April was that, despite the busy work schedule, I tried really hard to get more active. I only did one run and workout but overall, I tried to force myself to go out deliberately on walks outside of the normal routine. I put on a lot of weight in the last few months due to work and stress and the whole nine yards so its been making me feel a little unhappy about the whole thing so the best way to get active again. It was pretty good since it not only was getting me more active but also the walks helped me de-stress and refresh between work and overtime and actually made everything a little more efficient.

April is over so I’ll probably be doing more runs than walks in May as the weather steadies and I hopefully will have more time.

Tranquil Dreams Podcast

As of the last episode, Tranquil Dreams Podcast has gotten back to a weekly format covering one week of What’s Up. You can check out the last episode HERE.

In terms of schedule, I’m still posting a few days later than I would like but I’m hoping to slowly move it back to a fixed release day of the week. Plus, I have some ideas for other content lately so I’m going to see how to structure those in. Still, one step at a time and things will get back on track by the summer.

New Buys and Bubble Tea

I have some shopping therapy issue that I thought I had gotten rid of but apparently not. Although I’m not doing big buys but I was pretty interested in these Ooly stationary. I got these pastel liners and waiting for the pens to be delivered. I’m organizing stuff lately with a big notebook so its rather useful.

Other than that, we’ve been looking for a new controller for our PC since the husband and I have both gotten into streaming so its good to not have to move the controller between out two computers. Luckily, Costco sells these wireless Xbox controllers which are compatible with Steam. I’ve tested it out a few times on some games so far and really liking it. I haven’t had time to stream in April but planning to get back to it in May to play some of the games released on Xbox Game Pass in the past while. I have no set schedule yet but probably will have one set in the next month. If you watch Twitch, you can head over and give me a follow and get notifications to know when I go live HERE.

I feel like I haven’t talked about the new PresoTea opened over the last month or 2. I can’t remember but the Mango Green Tea with Mango Bubbles with less ice and lite sugar. The blend of that drink is awesome! Not sure if you all have PresoTea but if you do and like mango or iced tea, this one is so good. I don’t drink it a lot but I like to get one as a reward.

Streaming with Friend Update: Resident Evil Village on launch day

On the note of streaming and somewhat of an announcement!

For some of you who don’t know, I stream on Friday evenings with my friend playing horror games. The coming week is release of Resident Evil Village on May 7th (this coming Friday) and we’ll be playing that on release day! Its super rare that it happens and we’re going in completely blind (other than knowing that there’s the tall vampire lady) as we both haven’t played the demos or watched any videos of it or the trailer either.

If you want to come check it out, the stream starts at 8pm EST so you can head over to my friend Brandel Savage’s Twitch channel HERE.

Cute Kitty Pic

That’s it for the April Adventures!
I really stretched this one out and its not exactly exciting but pandemic protocols also doesn’t allow for a lot of variety.
At least, we can sign up for the first vaccine appointment soon so that’s progress, right?

Music Obsessions – March 2021

Welcome to the next Music Obsessions! March is here and this past month felt like there was lot of music..but in reality, there actually wasn’t. Either way, still a few things to share!

My Love – 乐华NEXT

Big fan of the boy group Next who don’t release a whole lot of new singles as a few of them do have their own individual music as well, however when they do, its always really cool performance. I do like the rhythm of the song overall.

Shake That Brass – Amber Liu
(Produce Camp 2021 Performance)

I could have used the original music video for Amber Liu’s Shake That Brass but I actually prefer this performance so here we go. One of my discoveries from Produce Camp 2021 is their mentor Amber Liu who is rather talented and cool. This song is so fun!

戒菸 Quit Smoking – 李榮浩 Ronghao Li

After mentioning a mentor for Produce Camp 2021, I do have to mention one from Youth With You 3 and its one of the trainee first ranking performances that lead me back to this song. I had heard it before but never really paid a lot of attention to it. Not sure if its a current mood or whatnot but somehow, I really like it this time around and its been on replay quite a bit. Plus, the music video is done really well.

HIP -Japanese ver.- MAMAMOO

A Japanese trainee group performed this song as their first ranking on Produce Camp 2021 and it was pretty fun so I hunted down the original. I just love the rhythm and style of the song. I haven’t really watched the music video much but the song itself is super fun to listen to. I’m starting to realize that a lot of upbeat music is making my list this month. I guess it has to do with the fact that its keeping my energy level high.

非你不可 Just U – 謝霆鋒 Nicholas Tse & 泰山樂隊 Tarzan

I don’t know if anyone remembers last year when there was the band competition show called Me To Us which I absolutely loved and shared some of the music at the time. Its why this song means so much more because the winning band Tarzan finally gets a new song and its with their mentor Nicholas Tse, who for those who frequent here know I’m a mega fan of for the last 20 years or something.

That’s it for this Music Obsessions!
I rather quick one this time but hope you enjoyed!
What have you been listening to lately?