Wednesday 31 January 2018

18 Netflix Original Series to Stream in 2018 (#Ad) #Streamteam Netflix_CA

18 for 2018 

You'll want to add these Netflix Original Series to your 2018 What to Watch List. 

Disclosure: As a member of the Netflix Canada Streamteam I receive
special perks for my participation, posts and sharing. All opinions are my own. 

Limiting myself to just 18 Netflix Original series for this list was a tough task. Both the quality and quantity of the content Netflix is creating is outstanding. These 18 are sure to get you started, but don't feel you need to limit yourself when there are so many binge-worthy options. 

So much drama ...
There is literally so much great TV drama for you to watch this year! These are just a few examples of the many Netflix Original drama series currently available to stream. 
1) Atypical (2017, TV-MA, 1 season) 
Sam, a teenager on the autism spectrum has decided he's ready to date. The problem is his family doesn't seem quite there yet, about his dating or his demands for more independence.  
2) Girlboss (2017, TV-MA, 1 season)
She's quirky, creative and her own boss. Now if only she can just resist being her own worst enemy and sabotaging what she has created. 
3) Gypsy (2017, TV-MA, 1 season)
I found this psychological thriller to be disturbing on so many levels, yet I couldn't seem to look away. I think therapist Jean Holloway could use some therapy of her own. 
4) Grace and Frankie (2018, TV-MA, season 4 recently added) New Episodes
News Flash: Age Is Only A Number! And Grace and Frankie are proof. Unfortunately those around them, and sometimes their bodies, have yet to hear news.

Out of this world ... 
If you are a sci-fi or fantasy fan then Netflix has you covered in 2018. Whether you're into zombies, vampires, aliens or some other supernatural occurrences Netflix has something for everyone.   
5) Black Lightning (2018, TV-14, 1 season with new episodes added weekly) New Series
School principal and retired superhero Jefferson Piece is faced with some tough decisions about his family, school, community and his retirement status. 
6) Glitch (2015, TV-MA, 2 seasons)
People aren't suppose to return from the dead, and definitely not six of them! I think we can agree that is sure to throw anyone for a loop. 
7) The Mist (2017, TV-MA, 1 season)
It's not the fog that's the problem, so much as the terrifying visions and creatures it hides. (This series is based on a Stephen King novella.)
8) Colony (2017, TV-14, 2 seasons) New Episodes
Just how far would you go to protect the ones you love? In this near-future series former FBI Agent Will Bowman will have to answer that question, as tries to keep his family safe and all together. 
9) Van Helsing (2017, TV-MA, season 2  recently added) New Episodes
Vanessa Helsing wakes from a 5-year coma finding herself in a vampire nightmare, and to learn her vampire immune blood makes her very likely humanity's last hope. (No pressure there, I'm sure.)
10) Altered Carbon (2018, TV-MA, 1 season) Season 1 coming February 2nd, 2018. New Series
"After 250 years on ice, a prisoner returns to life in a new body with one chance to win his freedom: by solving a mind-bending murder" 

Crime and Punishment ... 
The saying goes, "Don't do the crime if you can't do the time", but is it really that black and white? These Netflix Original series clearly show it's complicated, messy and grey. 
10) Wanted (2017, TV-14, 2 seasons) 
After being framed for a murder they witnessed, total strangers Lola and Chelsea become fugitives and "partners in crime" so to speak.
11) Retribution (2016, TV-PG, 1 season, recently added) Recently Added
"A dark web of secrets and lies emerges when a newlywed couple is killed and detectives question their feuding families."
12) Manhunt:Unabomber (2017, TV-14, 1 season)
FBI Profiler Jim "Fitz" Fitzgerald is trying to catch the Unabomber, but in order to do that he'll need to find support within the FBI Unabom Task Force (UTF) for his new approach to profiling.     
13) Mindhunter (2017, TV-MA, 1 season)
FBI Profilers Holden Ford and Bill Tench attempt to catch murderers and serial-killers by first understanding how they think. Hoping to "get in the mind" of murders they get up-close-and-personal with some of the most notorious murders incarcerated at the time. Their work in this area of criminal science is the basis for current serial-killer profiling. 
14) Seven Seconds (2018, TV-MA, 1 season) Season 1 coming February 23, 2018. New Series
The search for the truth about the death of a 15-year-old African American boy killed by a Jersey City cop has tensions running high between the African American community and the Jersey City Police.    

Made me laugh ... 
Sometimes all you can do is laugh at life and all it throws all you. These are just a sampling of the Netflix Original comedy series that will keep you in stitches in 2018.
15) The End of the FxxxING World (2017, TV-MA, 1 season, dark comedy) Recently Added
Be warned this is not a lighthearted comedy, and definitely not appropriate for younger viewers. It is a story about what happens when two teens -- James a self-diagnosed psychopath and Alyssa the rebellious new girl at school -- decide a road trip to find Alyssa's real father is a good idea.    
16) Friends from College (2017, TV-MA, 1 seas0n)
A group of friends who met at Harvard reconnect as they approach their 40's only to find that their complicated and interwoven relationships aren't any less so 20 years later.  
17) American Vandal (2017, TV-MA, 1 season, dark comedy) Recently Added
This true-crime satire begins after someone vandalizes 27 Hanover High School faculty members' cars by spray-painting phallic images on them. Dylan Maxwell, who claims he's innocence is expelled for the crime, prompting a student-filmmaker to investigate the controversial crime, suspect and penalty.  
18) Disjointed (2018, TV-MA, 2 parts) New Series
Ruth Whitefeather runs a medical marijuana dispensary called Ruth's Alternative Caring with the help of her 20-something son, and a security guard. As you can imagine the three of them get up to all sorts of "high" joints jinks. 

This year I plan to add shows not in my usual or go-to genres to "My List". For me that includes adding more shows from the psychological thrillers, and sci-fi/fantasy categories. How about you? What's on your "What to Watch" list for 2018? Will you be considering shows from genres or with themes you may not have in the past? 

If you want to stay up to date on the latest news and content available on Netflix Canada be sure to follow the them on twitter and facebook

Yep, just me Cathy thinking about learning this year.  

Tuesday 30 January 2018

Looking Back 2017 & Looking Forward 2018: A Collection of Collages & Ideas

2017 - A glance back at what I did, saw, ate, loved, etc.

2018 - A glance forward at what I want to try, do, and try to do.

Disclosure: This post contains links to a number of previous Cathy Thinking Out Loud posts, 
some of which may contain sponsored content. As always all opinions are my own. 

WOW! 2017 flew by in what seemed like a blink of an eye, and before I knew it I was smack dab in 2018. A new year always means reflecting on the highlights and disappointments of the year before, and things I did or didn't accomplish. What people, experiences, or things impressed, inspired, or disappointed me, and what thoughts and memories will stay with me. Those reflections and thoughts have a huge impact on my goals and hopes for the new year. Some things will continue into 2018 and beyond, others will be fondly (or not so fondly) remembered but discontinued, or have simply run their course. Which brings me to the list of things I want to try, do, or try to do this in 2018. The list is long, and I know not all on the To Do list will get ticked off, but now in January it's kinda exciting so see all the potential the year holds. Because as far as I'm concerned until the clock strikes 12 on December 31st, 2018 the possibilities for this year are endless. 

It's plain to see 2017 was a busy year ...
I Went to ...
Clearwater, Florida, and various Ontario destinations including Toronto and the GTA, CasinoRama and Orillia, Gananoque, and Parkbridge Resort at Wasaga Beach.

I Attended ...
The Hockey Exhibit at the Canadian Museum of History (very Canadian and appropriate to mark Canada's 150th), a live taping of an episode of Cityline (with my Big Sis and Julie), Floral Crown and Wreath Making Workshop at Place d'Orleans (with Julie - fun with friends!), a Picnic with Ann and Julie in Gatineau Park, Vogue Darling - Style and Lifestyle Influencer Networking event, Taj Blogger night, Chatime blogger tasting event, Anne screening at the NAC - Netflix Streamteam, Supperworks Ottawa Blogger night, and the Ottawa Blogger Holiday lunch. 

As well the 4th BConnected Conference (for Digital Influencers) that was relocated to Toronto from Ottawa's final year. I was very sad to see the end of this conference, having attended all 4, with each one getting bigger and better. 

I Saw ...
The Mechanical Giants of La Machine (amazing HUGE mechanical creators), the Ottawa Chinatown Night Market in Ottawa's Chinatown, and PINK perform at Ottawa Bluesfest. During Doors Open Ottawa 2017 I managed to fit in a tour of the Canadian Aviation and Space Reserve Hanger and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) Ocean, Coastal and River Engineering Facilities, both of which were fascinating in their own way.

I Ate at ...
In OttawaTaj Indian Cuisine (delicious ... need I say more?), Morals Village Hot Pot (a dining experience), and other Ottawa eateries such as Jericho (filled with art and colour), Baan Thai (get the lunch special that comes on a lazy susan), Kanata Noodle House (for my favourite "birds nest chicken" aka F8), and Shawarma Palace (another family favourite) are just some of the local Ottawa establishments I had the pleasure of dining at in 2017. 
In Toronto: Arriba Restaurant & Lounge at the Renaissance Toronto, The Senator Restaurant (for pre-Cityline taping breakfasts) and Trattoria Mercatto (for post-Cityline taping lunches).

Other locations: CasinoRama and Orillia area eateries (there are so many great dining options at every price point), and in Clearwater, Florida - Frenchys Rockaway Grill (great food, friendly staff, and the view ain't too bad either).

I Tried ...
My first Barre and spin class during a 30-day fitness challenge. 
Beer again for the first time in at least a decade ... and liked it! 

I Embraced ...
Fruit in the way of an Apple Watch, iPhone and Apple MacBook. 

Indulged in ...
Some Retail Therapy ... because if the shoe fits ... 

I Watched ...
So many great movies, and shows. Last year was my 4th year as part of the Netflix Streamteam. And the quality and quantity of content was outstanding in 2017. (Be sure to check out my What to Watch posts for suggestions.) In addition to Netflix I found plenty to watch on Amazon Prime, and on local and Canadian TV channels. 

I Loved ...
I refer to myself as a tech-challenged tech-enthusiast. I love technology as long as it is easy enough for even me to use, and makes life better in some way. The Kingston Technology Data Traveler microDuo 3.0 (that works with both standard USB and micro USB ports) makes it easy to store or transfer data from my smartphone or tablet to my laptop. Given I use my phone almost exclusively to take pictures for my blog, storage, convenience and ease of use is why this easily made my Love List. The Belkin Road Rockstar 4 -port car charger (4 Ports!!!) If you have ever done a long-distance road trip with teens you'll know why this is a travel must-have and sanity-saver. My selfie light for my phone (not for selfies) I actually rarely use this for selfies, but it works wonders when trying to take pictures in low light such as a restaurant. Honourable mentions go to my Nordic Ware microwave egg cooker. It just works, and is easy to use with virtually no cleanup required. And the Instant Pot is worth every penny. It makes weekday meal prep fast and easy. 

Well hello 2018! Good to meet you.
This year I'm looking forward to ...

  • A soon-to-be-announced collaboration with Julie from Try Small Things in April. A first for both of us that we are excited about. 
  • A trip to Florida in the Spring. Just starting to look at dates and flight options. Always fun to do on a cold Canadian winter day. 
And I'm hoping to ...

  • Redesign my blog and switch to WP.
  • Take courses on coding, WP, photography. 
  • Perfect my pitch, and pitch more of my ideas. 
  • Embrace video and create live or taped video content to share both on my social media channels and on the blog. 
  • Hit 10,000 followers on twitter.
  • Write more, and more consistently on my blog. 
  • Read more ... books, articles and posts about marketing, blogging, writing, photography.
  • Learn how to use my new Apple laptop and phone. In the past I have used Android and PC's so this should be an interesting transition. 
  • Discover all the functions of my cameras, and how I can use them. 
  • Declutter my house, workspace, life, mind, and anything else that can be decluttered. 
  • Be more active and eat healthier. 
  • Manage time better.
  • Increase my Mindfulness & Focus. There are many apps, techniques and tips to increase mindfulness and decrease stress. So I'm looking to discover which ones work well for me.  
  • Travel to places I've never been before. 
  • Take chances and step out of my comfort zone ... at least once or twice. 

So I bid a fond farewell to 2017, while looking forward to an amazing 2018. 
What was the best part of your 2017, and what are you most looking forward to in 2018?

Yep, just me Cathy thinking about a looking back over the last year, and looking forward to a what I hope is a spectacular 2018.   

Monday 29 January 2018

Positive "Feeler Words" - #Confidence #WordOfTheWeek


There are certain words I call "feeler words" because they evoke a reaction from me. My feeler words may not be the same as yours, but we all have certain words that inspire, empower, give off a positive vibe, or even work like a personal call to action. In 2018 I'd like to share my list of 52 feeler words, how they make me feel and, why they made my list.

Confidence: "A conviction the outcome will be favourable" and "a belief in the certainty of something". 

Positive thinking, confidence and believing something not only can but will happen is powerful stuff. Adding the word "self" to confidence and believing in your ability to make something happen is all about that powerful stuff coming from within yourself and that my friends is empowering. 

Self-Confidence: "A belief in one's own abilities; self-assured." and "A positive belief that in the future one can generally accomplish what one wishes to do." 

"Confidence" ... just the word alone makes me want to stand a bit taller, and hold my head a bit higher. 
When I started my blog I literally had no clue what I was doing, and to a large extent that is still true. I'm not a writer by trade, so putting my work out there for all to see was a big deal. Yet I go forth writing and posting with the belief my efforts will have a favourable outcome, and that in the future I can accomplish what I wish to to do. I believe I can write, and by continuing to write my skills and ability to articulate what I want to say will improve. With each post I write I'm confident what I write about and how I write about it has value. 

When I feel confident ...
I hear my inner voice loudly and clearly say "Don't be distracted by all the buzz and noise around you, just focus on you and what it is you're trying to achieve. Followed by a "Girl you got this!" 

When I think about "confidence" I think commitment, big picture and the playing the long game. 
To have confidence you don't need to always be right, or the best, or never fail. It's about believing in yourself and your abilities when you are challenged, or struggling, overlooked, or undervalued. It's about believing in yourself while facing challenges and setbacks and that in the long-term your abilities and efforts will result in a favourable outcome. Confident people never strike me as getting that way overnight. Their confidence comes from experience, and the effort they put in developing their skills and abilities to achieve their goals, and a favourable outcome.

We can't control everything around us or even how people act towards us, but we can control how we react to situations, and people, and whether we frame it in a positive or negative way. How I frame experiences and situations impacts how I feel, what I do, and my confidence. It's easy to feel down and question your abilities when you only look at what you haven't done, or are afraid to do. Confidence comes from looking at the bigger picture that includes all the things you have learned and all progress and successes as well.   

Just in case you need a little help ... 
Below are links to a few posts with tips on boosting your self-confidence and staying positive.

And just in case you didn't know ... 
"You Got This!"

Yep, just me Cathy thinking out loud about the word Confidence.