The last time I spoke about the Super Bowl, I didn’t have much to say about it other than I wasn’t all that interested. For the past 2 years I have lived in New Zealand, I really didn’t get involved at all. This year, I must admit that I started to miss it just like I’ve been missing quite a few American things lately which I normally wouldn’t be all that excited about.

So this year I went to a friend’s house who was having a Super Bowl party and watched the game. I must admit that I was rooting for Denver so I spent a majority of the game being angry. I was disappointed that the game I finally chose to watch was overall a pretty boring game, especially for a Super Bowl.

My favourite part? Renee Fleming.
She pretty much won the Super Bowl.

I texted my dad asking what he thought.
His response? “You’re better.”
Not true but still adorable.

My friends and I all were pretty shattered by half time. We were not expecting much from the half time show because… was Bruno Mars going to sing us a lullaby and calm us all down or something? I must admit I was actually pretty impressed. That could be because my expectations were low, though.

This was probably my favourite tweet of the day. We proceeded to sing the song every time the Broncos gave up the ball. This was unfortunately a lot.

I am glad that I watched the Super Bowl. Everyone also loved the nachos that I made.

Tomorrow the students start school. So far it has only been staff meetings and department meetings. I am looking forward to seeing them again. Come at me, 2014! I’m ready for you!

I have not been so excited about singing a song in such a long time. I stumbled on this song the other day and I was like GIMME GIMME THIS SONG.

I am going to sing this in a few weeks at my choir concert. I want to nail it. I just wanted to show you all because this song is amazing and so is Sutton Foster.

I’ve been yelled at by quite a few people for not blogging enough. I’ve just been having too much fun and it has kept me busy!

This past weekend, I was invited to a local talent show. I decided to go and sing a song or two so I found myself some backing tracks and went along. I didn’t get much time to practice since I have been so busy lately and also because Josh was getting a bit tired of hearing the same songs over and over again. Nobody really wants to hear the same song over and over again even when they’re lovely (and especially not when they’re a bit depressing).

The talent show went really well. It was a great time. It’s good to get out and do something for a change and it was also good to actually get up and sing somewhere which I haven’t really done for a while. It felt good. The crowd liked it too. Even though I only brought two songs with me, they made me sing a third song with no music because they “needed to hear more!”

I was approached by a group of people from the town who said that they thought I was so amazing that they wanted me to do my own concert in the town. They could charge a cover fee and it could go toward a charity and improvements in the town. I told them that I’d accept and they went nuts. I don’t know who would come but I guess the group of them sure would.

I wasn’t really happy with how I did. I messed up lyrics. I didn’t project. I wasn’t confident enough. My breath support was pathetic. This is where everyone just yells at me or gets upset with me and tells me I’m being ridiculous and showers me with compliments. Or instead they’ll get angry with me and think I might even be fishing for compliments. I’m not. I am just a perfectionist. Isn’t that what it’s about, though? Shouldn’t we only be satisfied with our personal best? I certainly think so and if there are ways where I could have done better then I focus on them so that I can perform better next time. By analysing and picking myself apart, I am constantly improving myself. So sure, I might have been good – but it’s not as good as I personally can be.

If you’d like to have a listen and tell me what you think, Josh was kind enough to come along and record the show on my iPhone. (Although he did decide to put his hand over the mic during the end of one song so you won’t be able to hear it. Good job overall, though.)

I have had my android phone for quite some time now but recently I have become quite addicted to some of its features. By features, I’m obviously not going to talk about anything useful or helpful or even something that is probably interesting to you. I’m going to talk about ridiculous little games that I play on my phone. That’s right… I’m that pathetic.

It’s not like I’m just sitting in a corner with my phone playing all alone, though. I’m playing games with other people. Some might even say I’m playing with friends. Do you know what I’m getting at yet?

Addiction

Oh yes, I’ve been playing Words With Friends and Hanging With Friends – two of Zynga’s super fun and addicting games wrapped up in a pretty bow for the phone. Basically, they’re a glorified Scrabble and Hangman but I’m addicted to them nonetheless. It’s super fun to play them all day when I’ve got a spare second to check my phone.

The funny thing is, it has made me want to break out a real scrabble board and play it the old fashioned way but I don’t have anyone to play it with nor do I have an actual scrabble board. I will have to make a point to do this sometime in the future but for now I will continue to practice on my phone with my friends in far away lands.

Hanging With Friends

Do you play games on your phone?
My username is caitysparkles if you’d like to play with me. :)

I am going on a trip this week down to the school where I’ll be teaching in January. I am going to be sitting in on classes and just generally seeing how the school is run all week (plus probably doing something useful around there too, I’m sure). I am going to be staying with one of the teachers for the week and I am very excited. I think it will be great to finally meet some of the people I’ll be working with.

I’ll be taking my camera with me and I’ve scheduled some blog posts for your enjoyment along the way while I’m gone because I don’t think I’ll have much access to the internet while I’m away. You won’t hear much from me around the internet other than my already scheduled blog posts until I return at the end of the week. Then I have to work on Saturday AND Sunday. Bummer.

In the meantime while I’m packing, here are some random things I’ve liked on YouTube lately to entertain you. I hope you all have a wonderful week! I know that I will!

First, a funny video, because everyone likes humour.

Some well made videos that make you think and tell great stories.

And you’ve got to have some videos of cats, am I right?

I was working at the supermarket dairy the other day when I noticed a cute little kid in a shopping cart who was obviously talking to me. He was being pushed around by his mother and was sitting in that front seat part and couldn’t have been more than 2 years old. He was at that age where you couldn’t always understand what he was saying even though you could tell that he was definitely forming complete sentences and making sense so I answered him with one of those animated and polite, “oh, really? Cool!” Then I gave him my biggest smile. :)

My toddler buddy started hysterically laughing. Whatever he had said was obviously the funniest thing on the planet and so I gave a chuckle too since I was obviously in on the joke. Also, he was a really cute kid and he had just brightened my day, as kids do.

His mother turned to me and felt the need to not only translate what her son had said but also explain it to me. She told me how her little whipper snapper had somehow seen an episode of South Park and that’s where he heard the joke, “Do you like fish sticks? What are you, a gay fish?” That is when I understood what the kid had said. He had just told me this joke. The mother apologized again as the kid kept blurting out the joke at me. I told her it was cute and she smiled and ran away.

Today, I was minding my own business and out of the corner of my eye I saw the same kid. I smiled at him and he screamed at me, “GAY FISH!” I laughed out loud and said to him, “Oh! You remember me, huh?” I thought it was pretty adorable that he remembered. Also, it was pretty hilarious. It was probably funnier if you were there and it doesn’t sound so funny now that I’m writing it down but perhaps you can still see the hilarity in it all because I definitely do.

Do you like fish sticks?

In case you’ve been living under a rock, I’ll just let you know that New Zealand has been hosting the Rugby World Cup this time around. It has been super exciting for New Zealand and it has been huge over here for the past couple months. To me, it is like the Olympics but it’s just all Rugby. Maybe that’s just silly sounding but for a silly American that’s just how I see it (though I like to think I’m more of a kiwi every day). I’m almost ashamed to admit that I didn’t even know that the USA had a rugby team until I saw their rugby team’s banners hanging up all over the place (USA All The Way!). I don’t know if I should really go around telling everyone that the USA does have a team, though. They lost to Australia 67 to 5. Alright – I’ll give them some credit – they didn’t lose every game and those Aussies are a top team. They did beat Russia and had fairly close games with Italy and Ireland.

Watching the RWC

Josh and I stayed up late last night watching the Rugby World Cup Final. We streamed it over the internet because we are pros like that. Oh, and also because we still have no television. We actually like having no television but that’s a story for a different day. The final was New Zealand vs. France and it was such a close game (the end score was only 8 to 7). I was at the edge of my seat for the entire game and I was constantly reminded how much I absolutely love rugby. My love for rugby grows every time I watch another game. Not only is it much more fast paced that American Football but there are WAY less commercials (there was one commercial break in the entire game – at halftime – and it wasn’t even streamed through the computer as you can see in my photo) and it is just a more interesting game to watch for me. (I don’t mean to upset any football fans, including my dear old dad – that’s why everyone has a sport that is dear to them, right?)

I can’t even tell you how excited I was when the All Blacks won. If you haven’t heard then once again you’re living under a rock. I can’t wait until I can watch more rugby! Next I will have to try and get to a game and see how that experience is. Josh reckons that watching it on the TV is much better since it would be annoying when all the plays are happening down one end of the field and you can’t see. I suppose that’s true but I bet the atmosphere is something that would be exciting to experience at least once in a lifetime. I would have loved to have been in that stadium last night. I can only imagine how incredible the emotion was.

In my last post where I shared my picture of my “cloud castle,” I got an awesome comment from Alexandra. She said that the picture reminded her of the song Castle On A Cloud from Les Misérables and she told me I should sing it and share it with everyone.

I thought that was an awesome idea. Castle On A Cloud was one of my favourite songs when I was a kid. It was one of the first songs I learned when I first started taking voice lessons and Les Misérables was also the first musical I saw on Broadway so it is very special to me.

Enjoy! Thanks for the suggestion, Alexandra!

I made this mix while I was feeling really melancholy and all I wanted to hear were guitars and pianos and soft voices singing melancholy sounding songs. The last two tracks are a bit different. Number 7 is purely instrumental and I absolutely adore it. It’s a piano and cello duet of a mix of Taylor Swift’s “Love Story” and Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida.” It is by an awesome composer by the name of Jon Schmidt. The last song that I snuck on there is Hanson which I put last in case you want to stop listening before you get there. Hey, being the Hanson fan that I am it was bound to happen in one of my Music Monday posts. At least I have the courtesy to put it in a place where you can skip it the easiest if you’d like. I know that there is still a certain taboo about listening to Hanson which I respect even if I don’t understand! The last time I blogged about Hanson I lost a bunch of subscribers but maybe they were just upset that Josh cut his hair. Who knows?

A Melancholy Afternoon
1. You Were Meant For Me by Jewel
2. It’s Been A Long Time by Melissa Ferrick
3. The Luckiest by Ben Folds
4. I Was Born by Billy Bragg & Wilco
5. The Golden Age by Beck
6. Sunday Morning by Ani DiFranco
7. Love Story Meets Viva La Vida by Jon Schmidt
8. Me Myself & I by Hanson

Something new this week. For those of you who enjoyed my mix last week, I’m really glad. If it wasn’t for you, thanks for giving it a try anyway. I know I always enjoy trying out new music even if it ends up not being for me.

This week I put together a mix of some female vocalists (or bands) that I’ve been listening to lately. One or two of them are sort of similar to last week’s mix (I couldn’t help myself – I’ve just been in that ambient/chill kind of mood lately) but the rest of them are much different! Enjoy!

Who is your favourite female vocalist?

Female Vocals
1. Carnies by Martina Topley Bird
2. Wandering Star by Portishead
3. Again and Again by The Bird and the Bee
4. In The Waiting Line by Zero 7
5. The Valley by Eisley
6. Science vs. Romance by Rilo Kiley
7. All You Got by Tegan and Sara
8. Number One Blind by Veruca Salt

I have been listening to a great deal of music lately and I noticed that I’ve been listening to it a lot differently lately. I’ve been making mixes instead of just putting on an album or putting my entire music library on shuffle. I have also noticed that my musical tastes have changed quite a bit in the past couple years when I really thought about it. This got me to thinking – who doesn’t like to share music? I’ve been visiting a lot of blogs lately who share mixes and I have actually really enjoyed listening to the music they put up on their blogs. Some of it I never heard before and some of it I hadn’t heard in a long time or had forgotten about. I decided that whenever I felt so obliged I’d do the same. Enjoy Music Monday. Let me know what songs you like and what kinds of mixes you would like to keep seeing (or not seeing).

So back to 8tracks I go. I used it once but never really got around to playing with it like I wanted to. This mix is a combination of my favorite chill and electronic songs that I’ve been listening to lately. I hope you enjoy it.

A Rainy Sunday Mix
1. Nice Weather For Ducks by Lemon Jelly
2. Eggplant by Gui Boratto
3. Overture by Daft Punk
4. Black Milk by Massive Attack
5. Change Down by Bonobo
6. Mer du Japon (Radio Edit) by Air
7. Broken Drum (Boards of Canada Mix) by Beck
8. Blur by Aphex Twin
View the mix on 8tracks.

I leave for New Zealand tomorrow! Tomorrow!!!

I probably won’t be able to be in touch for a while and understandably once I reunite with Josh I probably won’t want to talk to all of you for a while. No offense. :P

In all seriousness, though, we won’t have internet for a bit while we get situated in our new place. Things will probably be a bit crazy for a while. I expect it to be crazy in a very good way, though.

So, I wanted to leave you with one more goodbye blog post and give you one more treat! I will share with you what I will be doing on my plane ride. Aren’t you excited? I know you are. My trip will be over 30 hours long not counting travel time to the first airport or customs at the end of the last airport. Crazy, right? Oh, and that could turn into an even longer journey now that a stupid volcano decided to erupt in Chile and blow some ash my way. Hopefully that doesn’t happen. I think 30+ hours is long enough for me.

So, here is what I’m doing on my trip.

  • Sleeping. Oh, I really, really hope I can sleep. If you have ANY tips for sleeping on planes that you’ve been hiding… NOW is your time to share them with me.
  • Finally reading the Harry Potter books on my Kindle. Yeah, I know. What kind of person am I for never reading the Harry Potter series? You probably are disowning me as a blog friend right now. Hit that unsubscribe button right now. I will probably understand. I might even unsubscribe from my own blog. I’m that embarrassed that I haven’t read them yet.
  • Worrying about the ash cloud. Hey, it’s the truth. Not necessarily worrying about danger but worrying about it delaying my damn flight. No offense to Sydney but I don’t really want to be stuck there, only 3 hours away from glorious Wellington.
  • Listening to my super fabulous playlist that I made until my crappy little 4G mp3 player dies. Oh, but it will be epic while it lasts. I’ll even share my music playlist with you.

Caity’s Epic Playlist of Awesome:
Africa – Andy McKee
All Around Me – Savage Garden
Australia – Manic Street Preachers
Billionaire – Travie McCoy ft. Bruno Mars
Carnies – Martina Topley Bird
Eggplant – Gui Boratto
Firework – Katy Perry
Fix You – Coldplay
Four Seasons In One Day – Crowded House
Girl – Beck
Give A Little – Hanson
Home – Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
I Can’t Decide – Scissor Sisters
In The Bath – Lemon Jelly
Intolerance – Tool
I See Red – Split Enz
Jessica – Allman Brothers Band
Judas – Lady GaGa
King’s Lead Hat – Brian Eno
Life On Mars – David Bowie
Like A Boss – The Lonely Island
Love Story meets Viva La Vida – John Schmidt
Mer Du Japon – Air
Mutha’uckas – Flight of the Conchords
Panic Switch – Silversun Pickups
Peacock Tail – Boards Of Canada
Penguin – Avicii
Pokarekare Ana – Hayley Westenra
Supermassive Black Hole – Muse
Voodoo Child – Rogue Traders
Watch It Die – Eisley

I hope you enjoyed.

Don’t worry. Some songs have special or silly meanings. Try to guess some of them if you can. Maybe you remember one I might have sung at my wedding or you can guess which ones I might listen to in a certain airport or even which one I might listen to on my New Zealand touch down? I just might not get back to you for a while.

See you on the other side!

Not that you really need a math lesson but the math teacher in me just needs to clarify! Pi is the symbol for the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Pi Day is celebrated by math geeks like me around the world on March 14th since Pi = 3.1415926535…

Now that you have had your math lesson, I’ll give you something fun! You all like music, right? Well if I asked you how you could make music even more awesome, what would you say? I’d tell you that you could add some math! More specifically, add Pi! Enjoy!

For the past couple weeks, Josh and I have been playing Dungeons and Dragons Online. It has been around for quite some time now. This MMORPG is free to play and it is totally awesome especially if you have ever played pen and paper Dungeons and Dragons.

Dungeons and Dragons Online (by caitysparkles)

We play online with one of Josh’s brothers, Adam, and some of Josh’s and Adam’s other friends from New Zealand. We have been having so much fun. Josh and I actually like the game so much that we upgraded our accounts to VIP accounts (and pay per month) to get special features in the game like cool things for our characters and access to other zones.

Does anyone else play? If you don’t, you should check it out. What have you got to lose? It’s FREE!
If you play, you can find me as Myztika on the Orien server.

Thanks for your opinions yesterday regarding whether or not a meme would be good to do here. I have decided to try and do Wordless Wednesdays for a while. I am going to only post a photo on Wednesdays and no words. We’ll see how you like it. I’ll blog and try to tell a story using only photos on Wednesdays. Tomorrow we’ll see how it goes. :)

365days: 006 (by caitysparkles)

I found Kite Runner in the faculty room shared library today. I heard that it was such a good book and I couldn’t pass it up any longer so I decided to borrow it and give it a read. We’ll see how it goes. It’s not usually the type of book that I read. I’m normally a scifi and mystery or action junkie but I figured why not give it a try since everyone said it was so fantastic. Once in a while I like books like this.

I have been so absolutely exhausted these past few days. This week is really hitting me hard.

Josh showed me something really interesting tonight. He wanted me to listen to this techno song (even though we are both not very partial to techno) but he promised me that he had a purpose. He told me to really listen to it for a while and hear how it went. So I did.

Then, Josh told me to listen to this song.

I love when people are able to take songs and create entirely different and beautiful music and remixes from it. I wanted to share it with you.

Do you have a favorite remix?

Today, Josh and I turned the couch around to face the wall, pulled down our projector screen, and watched a movie! I love bringing the movies right into our apartment.

Projector Screen (by caitysparkles)

We decided to watch Death at a Funeral (2007). Ah, yes, those previews you see of the upcoming Death at a Funeral (2010) is a remake. This one tells the same tale except it’s a dysfunctional British family that goes through all the same funny nonsense that this new film will. Usually America remakes films that are in other languages, but they had to remake a foreign film of the same language – they must be running out of material! Haha.

Anyway… it was a really good movie and it was a nice ending to my week-long February break vacation from work. I can’t believe it’s back to work tomorrow. Will these middle schoolers be tired because they aren’t used to getting up early or will they have loads of pent up energy because they’re well rested? I guess tomorrow we’ll see.

Well, there’s one more day until my lovely one week break from work is over. Why do vacations always seem to fly by? I feel like yesterday was Tuesday!

Today, lots of things got accomplished around here and I also accomplished my awesome task of relaxing and playing video games all day. It’s what I do to relax and I enjoy sitting in my pajamas for hours on end playing a great game.

I started playing Torchlight. I bought it for sale on Steam a while back but never got around to playing it until now. The trailer could probably explain it better than I could. Basically, just think Diablo with loads more awesome.

It’s a fantastic game. I am playing a vanquisher named Caity with a pet named Mokie. Not much of a surprise there.

torchlight2 (by caitysparkles)

I’m already level 15!
Some random kid in town told me I was big and strong.
He obviously knows what he’s talking about.

torchlight1 (by caitysparkles)

Torchlight gets Caity’s seal of approval!