Downtown Toronto 

Hey guys! Sorry for not posting in the past couple of months – I’ve been incredibly busy and I lost the motivation to keep this blog running. I plan on posting more often, so stay tuned for future posts from me!

Fortunately, I’m back with some photos from downtown Toronto. I had the chance to visit the harbourfront and the CN Tower, so I’m going to share those pictures with you!


The huge floating duck was from the Redpath festival, which was from July 1 – 3 (the only reason we went to the festival was for the huge floating duck). It takes less than a minute to go up the CN Tower, and the view from the tower is so beautiful.

How’s your summer going? Anyone back at school yet?

~samantha

Winter Photos

Hey guys! Long time no post! Also, I still can’t believe how time flies by so quickly – it’s already 2017! 

A few days ago, I got out of the house and took a walk. I also took a couple of nice pictures.


And a few days before that, I also took some more pictures, two of which are shown below:

So, I hope you liked the pictures! If you made any New Year’s resolutions, have you broken any of them yet? 

~Sam

Fall Photos

Hey guys! So sorry I haven’t been posting for the past month! I’ve been pretty busy, and I’ve also been focusing on Instagram and Tumblr more.

So here are some pictures that I took during the past month:


What’s your favourite Starbucks drink? Leave a comment down below!


Looking at the leaves changing colours is one of my favourite things to do in the fall. 


Of course, I still have studying to do, but at least I have my coffee!


I love wearing cozy sweaters in fall. 

So, I hope you enjoyed my photos! Hope you guys are having a great day, wherever you are!

~Sam

P.S. Does anyone have book recommendations they want to share? I’m hoping to do a mini book review for my next post.

My Week in Pictures

Hey guys? Hope your day’s going great!

This week went by pretty quickly, in my opinion. However, there were some long nights where I stayed up late to finish homework, and I even ended up sleeping at 3am halfway through the week. The next day, I found out the homework that I stayed up late to finish wasn’t actually due until the day after…oh well.

I also went out for dinner twice, and here are some pictures of the food I ate:

I can’t believe September is almost over, this month actually went by quicker than I expected.

Hope you guys are having a great day, wherever you are!

~Sam

Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child



Note: This review may have a spoiler or two (or maybe even more), so read this at your own risk.

I pre-ordered Harry Potter and the Cursed Child online, and I ended up getting it three days after the book was released. I regretted it, since a lot of people I saw had already bought the book on release day and read it, while I was still waiting for the book to arrive.

Those were a hard three days of me waiting for the book.

And then it showed up in the mail after those three days. I finished the book in less than two hours.

Summary:

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

After I finished the book in two hours, I ended up re-reading the book over and over again…mostly because I read it in a hurry, but it was also because I didn’t understand what was going on.

So the book (or script, should I say? You know what, I’ll just call it a book), mainly focuses on Albus and Scorpius, Draco Malfoy’s son, on their journey as they do a lot of time travelling.

And it was because of all this time travelling, and alternate universes, and whatever that I didn’t understand what happened. So you might want to re read the book a couple of times so you actually know what’s going on.

Since the book wasn’t fully written by J.K. Rowling, it felt like the characters kind of lost their personalities from the other seven books. It feels like Ron is just there for comic relief and Ginny doesn’t play a major role in this play. However, Hermione is once again a strong character who knows what she’s doing.

There will be moments in the book that will leave you extremely surprised and go “WHAAAAAAAAAT????” Those moments will probably confuse you and make you question them so much (not telling you what these moments are). And some moments will make you go, “Did this really need to happen? I mean, this is completely pointless!!!” And some moments just don’t make sense.

So my overall rating? 3.5 out of 5 stars. Mostly because I just really love anything to do with Harry Potter, and there were a few amusing parts in the book. I found all this time travelling and alternate universe thing extremely confusing, and the book didn’t do that great of a job explaining it. Characters like Ron and Ginny could have had a bigger role in the play. But if you want more Harry Potter to read and have been waiting a long time for new content to read, then I’d recommend this book.

If you read the book, what did you think of it? Leave a comment below with your opinion on the book!

~Sam

 

 

 

Brownie Cookies


If you like brownies…and you like cookies…

…then you should try BROWNIE COOKIES!

I found a recipe for brownie cookies a while back on Pinterest, but I never really had time to try it out. Last weekend, I tried it out with my friend, and I must say, the cookies turned out really well.

The recipe I used said not to use Baker’s Chocolate, but I used it anyway.

The cookies were quite chewy and very sweet and chocolatey (is that even a word??) They’re quite easy to make, requiring not that many ingredients to make. It may take a while to prepare, since you have to let the melted chocolate and butter cool to room temperature for 15 minutes and you need to put the cookie dough in the fridge for 20 to 30 minutes. I ended up leaving the dough in the fridge for about 20 minutes.

The link below is where I got the recipe:

Brownie Cookies

I’d recommend this recipe for everyone, especially those of you that love brownies and cookies!

Hope you guys are enjoying your summer!

~Sam

Walking Around 

A few days ago, I finally decided to get out of the house and take a walk. Here are some of the pictures I took: 


I stopped at Tim Hortons to buy a pineapple orange smoothie – you really should try it if you haven’t already. 

I’m pretty busy this month and don’t have many chances to get out and do something I like, so the walk around was pretty enjoyable.

Hope you guys are having a great summer so far! 

~Sam

Cinder (by Marissa Meyer) Review

I finished reading Cinder last week, and I must say, it was really good.

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Summary (from book cover):

Sixteen year old Cinder is considered a technological mistake by most of her society and a burden by her stepmother. Being cyborg does have its benefits, though: Cinder’s brain interface has given her an uncanny ability to fix things (robots, hovers, her own malfunctioning parts!),making her the best mechanic in New Beijing. This reputation brings Prince Kai himself to her weekly market booth, needing her to repair a broken android before the annual ball. He jokingly calls it “a matter of national security”, but Cinder suspects it’s more serious than he’s letting on. 

Although eager to impress the prince, Cinder’s intentioned are derailed when her younger sister, and only human friend, is infected with the fatal plague that’s been devastating Earth for a decade. Blaming Cinder for her daughter’s illness, Cinder’s stepmother volunteers her body for plague research an “honor”, that no one has survived. 

But it doesn’t take long for the scientists to discover something unusual about their new guinea pig. Something others would kill for. 

What I like about Cinder is that she’s a relatable character. She is discriminated because she’s cyborg. And being cyborg means that she can’t cry, she can’t blush, and she’s half robot.

The story of Cinder is similar to the original story of Cinderella. You have your evil stepmother, the two stepsisters, the father that passed away, and the prince. There are several differences between the two stories. Cinder was adopted when she was 11 by the father, the younger stepsister, Peony, is friendly to Cinder, and of course, Cinder is set in the future.

Cinder’s relationship with Prince Kai is one that is clouded with so many secrets. Cinder doesn’t want to reveal that she’s cyborg, and she doesn’t want to tell him that she’s not allowed to go to the ball. And she has another secret that she can’t tell, or Prince Kai would never want to associate with her again…

Things are pretty bad in New Beijing. There is a deadly sickness called letumosis, and there is no cure for it. And in the middle of those, Queen Levana, the main antagonist of the story, is trying to take over Earth, with her large army rallying behind her. She is also a Lunar, and uses her gift to brainwash people into thinking that she is the most beautiful of them all. The way the story is written will make you dislike Levana intensely.

Overall, I loved this book, and I would give it 5 out of 5 stars. At the end of several chapters, I was scared to turn the pages to find out what had happened, because the scenes had been written so well that they made me feel scared for Cinder. The disease, letumosis, was also described so vividly. If you’re looking for a science fiction book with a twist on the original fairytales, then this is the book for you.

~Sam

Sunshine Blogger Award

So I was nominated for the Sunshine Blogger award. travelfranzi, thanks for the nomination! 

Here are the rules for this award:

1) Thank the person who nominated you. 

2) Answer the 11 questions set by the person who nominated you. 

3) Nominate another 11 bloggers and think of 11 questions for them.

So I guess I’ll answer the questions then… 

1) Which place would you like to visit? 

I have a lot of places I want to visit so I’ll list a few: England, France, California, and Vancouver.

2) What do you like to do in your free time?

I love finding new recipes to try (mostly new chocolate chip cookie recipes). I also enjoy curling up with a good book, watching YouTube and eating chips, and going on Twitter…a lot. 

3) Name your favourite pet. 

I love dogs. They’re irresistibly cute ♥️

4) What is your favourite book? 

HARRY POTTER!!! All the books were so good!!! But I also love The Hunger Games. 

5) Which season of the year do you love the most? 

Probably the spring. Not too hot, not too cold…oh you could say that about fall as well. 

6) What is your favourite series?

Uh…I don’t have one! 😂

7) What do you like most about your country? 

TIM HORTONS. IT’S AMAZING. 

8) Do you have a pet?

Uh, do I…oh yeah, I have pet fish!  

9) What’s your favourite song?

Lush Life by Zara Larsson

10) What do you like more: beach or mountains? 

Uh…this is a hard one…

…the mountains! 

11) What has been the happiest moment this year? 

Being able to meet many new people 🙂 

So who do I nominate? Any blogger that reads this post. My questions for you are: 

1) What country do you live in? 

2) Where would you like to visit? 

3) Milk chocolate or dark chocolate?

4) What’s your favourite book?

5) What song would you recommend?

6) Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert?

7) What was the last movie you watched?

8) Dogs or cats?

9) What’s your favourite food?

10) What is (or was) your favourite school subject?

11) If you could time-travel, would you visit the past or the future? 

~Sam

Siren (Tricia Rayburn) Review

Last week, I finally took the time to read Siren by Tricia Rayburn. Here’s what I thought of it.

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Summary (from the book cover):

Vacationing in Winter Harbor, Maine, is a tradition for Vanessa and Justine Sands, and that means spending time with the Carmichael boys. This summer, Vanessa is determined to channel some of her older sister’s boldness, get over her fear of the ocean, and maybe turn her friendship with Simon Carmichael into something more. 

But when Justine goes cliff diving after a big family argument, and her body washes ashore the next day, Vanessa is sure that it was more than an accident. She is more certain of this, when she discovers that her sister was keeping some big secrets and Caleb Carmichael’s gone missing. Suddenly, the entire oceanfront town is abuzz when a series of grim, water related accidents occur, with the male victims washed ashore grinning from ear to ear. 

Vanessa and Simon team up to figure out if these creepy deaths have anything to do with Justine and Caleb. But will what Vanessa discovers mean the end of her summer romance, or even life as she knows it.

It’s pretty clear at the beginning of the book that Vanessa and Justine are opposites. Vanessa has low self esteem, and is scared of many things (e.g. the dark, the ocean). Justine, on the other hand, is eager to take risks just for attention, and is the more outgoing sibling.

Vanessa may indeed have low self esteem, but I like how she takes the initiative to find out what really happened to her sister. She is willing to drive back to Winter Harbor alone, even though she has no clue what lies ahead of her. She puts personal matters aside, and focuses on her sister.

Vanessa has a good relationship with her friends, and she befriends a local waitress named Paige, picking up a job at the same restaurant Paige works at. She also has a great relationship with her dad, who she calls “Big Poppa”. Vanessa’s relationship with her mom is a bit bumpy, as they don’t agree on many things. Her mom was opposed to her driving to Winter Harbor alone, and she also ended up going to Winter Harbor too to check on Vanessa. Vanessa’s family and friends help her uncover the truth about her and Justine’s relationship.
Simon, Vanessa’s love interest, is different from any other love interest. He’s a bit of a nerdy character, obsessed with weather patterns and meteorology. He also enjoys spending time with Vanessa and going with her on adventures. His and Vanessa’s romance is slow and steady – it takes then a while to finally admit their attraction to each other, and they take things slowly as their relationship progresses.

Overall, I would give this book 4 out of 5 stars. The book was written well, with lots of description that let you feel what the characters were going through, and visualize what was being described. There were some scenes that were unnecessarily long, and they made the book progress slowly at times.

~Sam

P.S. Hey! Did you like the review? I actually haven’t written reviews in a while, so this one might be bad. Anyway, I’m reading Cinder by Marissa Meyer, and you can expect a book review about it! If you have any book recommendations for me, feel free to leave a comment for me! Thanks!