Year in Music: Spotify

If you’re like me and haven’t received that Spotify email that tells you about your Year in Music, you can check it out here: www.spotify-yearinmusic.com

This is actually great because I was wondering what my most listened to tracks were this year. According to Spotify I listened to Pop and Contemporary Christian Music mostly, which makes sense as I didn’t start using Spotify to find new music until recently.

It also said that the top artist was Lorde – though, if Ms. Swift didn’t pull her tracks from Spotify it might have been her. Blank Space anyone?

The top track played was Coming Home – Part II by Skylar Grey followed by Love is On the Radio – Mr. & Mrs. F mix by McFly. I was surprised to see Tessa Violet on the list, but I suppose I listened to Just Right a bunch of times when it came out.

They then have a Play it Forward playlist which is a selection of songs for you based on your tastes this year. I think they did a great job curating the list for me, I started listening to it and I think it suits my tastes.

What’s your year in music like?

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On repeat: Jesus, Born on This Day by Mariah Carey

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Fun and entertaining on YouTube

I’ve shared a few of my favourite YouTube channels in the past, but I’m always finding interesting content on YouTube. So here are some more!

She was featured in one of my posts before, but I’ve recently starting following her channel. Giovanna Fletcher is the wife of Tom Fletcher who is in McBusted. She is an author, blogger, mummy and vlogger and I find her very delightful to watch.

I found Karen Kavett while clicking through on some DIY projects. She makes jewelry that she sells through DFTBA.com and does a lot of DIY craft videos on her channel.

Cinemasins has been entertaining me for the past two months. They basically point out the parts of movies that might not make any sense. I love when they do book-to-movie adaptations because my biggest pet peeve with those sort of movies is that, usually, the folks who don’t read the book have a lot of questions that the books answer but the movie doesn’t portray.

Finally, I can’t believe that I didn’t mention her before, but I absolutely LOVE Natalie Tran from CommunityChannel. She’s hilarious and not very consistent with her posts, (a running joke with her longtime viewers) but when she does post, it’s quite hilarious.

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On repeat: Dear Santa by Jay Brannan

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3 Sites for Christmas Shopping

Christmas is just around the corner and the shopping frenzy has begun. I try not to go do a lot of spending for Christmas, and if I do, I try to get gifts that are unique and meaningful. Here are some sites that I shop around for ideas!

Modcloth

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One of my favourite online stores! I’ve bought a number of outfits from them and I find their site easy to use. Since it’s only online, the next thing that I look for is returns and customer service. If you purchase an article and something is wrong with it, they do a really good job of making the return process as painless as possible.

Not only do they have cute clothes, they have adorable extras that can add a unique twist to your gift giving.

Uncommon Goods

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I’m not entirely sure how I happened across this site, but I’m so glad I did! There are some unique gift ideas there and even if I’m not buying I love browsing to see what new things they’ve added, I mean, USB cufflinks and a metal band made out of … metal? What’s not to like?

ThinkGeek

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Fresh out of college I found this site and I went a little crazy, buying random shirts and gadgets. It’s easy to loose track of time browsing through all the nerdy items for sale on this site and I absolutely love it! There are a lot of pop culture things on it as well so there’s a little something for everyone.

That’s all for now, maybe later this week I’ll do three sites that will make you feel good about helping other people. We’ll see. What are some of your faves?

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On repeat: You are the Sun by Sara Groves

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A Few of My Favourite Things

It’s December! I can’t believe it but it’s true. It seems that times speeds up, relative to the responsibilities on your plate. So here we are, the first day of December and I had a wacky thought – what if, for every day this month, I write a post about one thing that I love? I don’t know if I can REALLY do 31 posts, but I can try, so here goes!

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Winner-2014-Web-Banner

Coming off of November the one thing on my mind is NaNoWriMo! I won again this year and I’m SO HAPPY about that! I wasn’t planning on doing it and I didn’t really have an idea, but October came around and I felt like I wanted to try it again, so I took a story that was sort of flowing in my head for a while now, and decided to write it down.

Last year I wrote a little about my process (or lack thereof). A few things remained the same from last year, but this year I realized that I can plot – given the right tools.

In October I bought an app called Index Card. It’s a really great app that lets you brainstorm and plot your ideas on a cork board. It’s very flexible and doesn’t force you to work in a certain template so I was able to create my own flow and stacks without feeling boxed in. The best part was, since it was on my iPad I could carry it around with me and work with it on my commute without carrying around a big bag.

For the actual writing I used Scrivener. I first hear of the app from Justine Larbalestier, who posted about using it to write Liar (a really great book if you love unreliable narrators). Around that time I downloaded a trial version of the program and tried it out, it was a nice app, but I wasn’t writing anything at that moment so I forgot about it. That is, until last year when a friend of mine mentioned Scrivener to me for NaNoWriMo and I decided to give it another go. I bought the full version, imported my Word document and never looked back.

I absolutely LOVE Scrivener. I know that there are other apps out there that work similarly, but I appreciate that Scrivener has a lot of heavy-duty tools but still allows you the simplicity of just writing and ignoring the bells and whistles until you are ready.

I used the Index card as a guideline and then translated those cards to Scrivener where I fleshed out the story. If writing is something you love doing, I strongly suggest checking them out to see if they work for you!

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On repeat: Sleigh Bells by Fun.

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October’s Loot Crate!

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When I was thinking about what sort of boxes I should sign up for, Loot Crate was one of my top picks. My first one came yesterday and it had quite a few great things inside, just in time for Halloween.

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The first thing I pulled out was this skull t-shirt, but look carefully and you’ll see that it’s really a bunch of kittens.

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The next thing I was How to Survive a Sharknado. I haven’t seen this show but this book looks like it contains some funny anecdotes.

Seeing as I just started watching The Walking Dead, I’m curious to see what the comic book is all about.

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Probably my favourite item in the box, this chainsaw/sledge hammer pen will be a great Halloween kind of pen!

There were a few more things but these were all the pictures I took. I’m actually very pleased with this box, looking forward to November’s!