K-Pop Has Taken Over Our House – Part II

It’s just very, very sad. Not only how k-pop has taken over our house but I’m now completely hooked! I can’t stop listening to the music – specifically from EXO and BTS.

EXO Review:

Compared to BTS, they are on average older. They’ve been in the scene for several years and I’m glad I caught them at this more mature stage of their career. When Chaeli first started to forward me videos they were all so very young, I couldn’t tell who was who and their performance, while good, was lacking. Now that they are a more mature-EXO, their individuality is much more evident making them more enjoyable to watch.

Singing and dancing is great – it’s obvious each members strength though, so while some may have a great solo career, others obviously will require to always be a part of the band to succeed.

Do I have a bias? Yes. Which pains me because my two biases are NOT the oldest ones. Even the older ones (late 20’s) are still too young for me but at least I can’t use the line that I’m old enough to by their mother (minus the teen pregnancy scenario that is – yes I’m stretching it). At least the one I like the most looks older, though.

I’m human. I can not turn away from this photo of Kai:

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Kai (EXO)

Their more recent concerts have also shown a more sexier style of dancing. Once again, I AM HUMAN! I watch this and think of how much I would like to be that cane (Kai is the blond one who dances blind-folded in the end). Must watch both songs, “Playboy” and “Artificial Love”:

I’m just glad that Chaeli’s biases are so very different from mine. She likes the younger looking ones. At least I’ve got that! Sort of.

Their latest album “WAR” is fantastic! I can’t stop listening to this album – especially Ko Ko Bop, The Eve and What U Do.

BTS Review:

A much younger band but they’ve climbed their way to the top pretty fast, even winning a Billboard award this year and proving their ability to crack into the main stream scene.

Music is very energetic. THEY are very energetic. I have been working out to mostly their tunes and it’s benefiting my own energy level. I’ve also been obsessed with their dancing. These boys have fast and precise footwork. And their music videos are high quality production pieces.

Check out Fire – This is probably one of my favourite videos from them. It’s fun and energetic:

As for any biases, I will just let my daughter focus on her top 3 (V, Jungkook and Suga). They are young and they look young. And they act young. I’ll just focus on their talents and leave it at that!

K-Pop Has Taken Over Our House

It’s part of parenting a teen. And no matter how you think you’re being on top of things all pop-culture, as most of my fellow parents are in my generation, it never fails – your teen will get into something which you didn’t see coming.

Lets face it – most of us have seen it all. We’ve been through the different types of fashion fads as they have recycled through time (with modifications of course). We’ve listened to all genre’s of music as well as movies and TV shows.

And until there’s a new form of STD, we’ve learned all about those, too! (And if we haven’t, we should – and we should also get up to speed of the latest drugs on the streets because it is just good practice to be prepared for these types of discussions with our kids).

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K-Pop Band – EXO

The thing is, my 13 year old daughter and her friends, are now just CRAZY over k-pop. And I mean crazy-CRAZY! I have no problem with this. I didn’t expect it, to be honest. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I am over-the-top thrilled they have discovered something outside the mainstream of North American pop-culture. I just didn’t know a thing about this subculture which actually, has a huge fan-base – and not just in South Korea but internationally.

I’ve been trying to keep up with her. She comes home and introduces me to new singles. I download them for her iPod. And I watch the YouTube music videos she sends me (well, not all, she sends me a lot!) While I have no idea who’s who in whatever band she is into at any given time, I’ve at least figured out a couple of the boys she crushes after.

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BTS – Winners of the 2017 Bill Board Awards

As I bond with her, while she teaches me everything she knows about the K-Pop culture, I have to sit back and smile.

I remember what it was like being her age – I remember becoming “boy-crazy” and crushing after popular band members and teen beat heart throbs. The feeling was new and exciting. And innocent. It was, after all, uncomplicated crushes to be shared with girlfriends who had similar crushes.

This is a stage that is both amusing and adorable at the same time. And I have to admit, some of the songs are quite impressive. I’ve been listening to the ones I’ve downloaded for her while at work. And strange as it sounds, her friends are envious that her mom is into the same music and buying the songs/albums from iTunes for her.

Who would have thought this would bump up my popularity among her friends?

Went to T-Bay and Got My Ass Chewed

I dedicate this post to The Shameful Sheep – because if you have never visited her hilarious blog before, at least start off with this post like I did. I write the following post with her in mind.

Last weekend, we flew up to my in-laws’ northern, Ontario city for a weekend visit. Well, I stayed for just the weekend but my husband and daughter stayed for a week. And you will soon learn why I keep my stay short.

I care about my in-laws a great deal. They are, at the end of the day, people with good intentions. I believe they care about me though I’m quite certain it started off with a very rocky start (one where my MIL told my mother while Doug & I were engaged that I “really knew how to spend lots of money” and where my PIL didn’t hide his distaste for my city, Toronto). 15 years later, I’ve finally come to terms with the way they are. Not that I encourage it nor agree with it, but as they are thousands of miles away from us, I know it doesn’t affect my daily life, that I’m not about to succeed in ever changing them and I sure as hell will not change myself for them.

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A view I enjoyed – for about 10 minutes.

So what is it about visiting my husband’s hometown which makes me, well, cringe a little. Hmm… lets see, is it because there’s nothing to do? No, not really. There is a lot to do. They have amazing camping there with beautiful trails waiting for us to climb.

But, I don’t get to do that. Normally whenever I’m there, we are hanging out at some one’s home because my MIL has invited half the town to come over and visit with us or I’m stuck at home because my husband is helping out his dad on some work around the house (granted my husband’s choice but it leaves me bored out of my mind).

Their foodie industry is starting to develop with great farm-to-plate restaurants. But I never get to try those out either – nor can I even suggest it without that “Toronto people like to spend money, look.” So my husband and I spend part of our afternoons shopping for the RIGHT kind of food and cook the RIGHT way for everyone. Yeah, okay. I admit that we’re a bit snobbish when it comes to food but for cryin’ out loud, whenever I stop to buy a nice bottle of red wine, I have to always stop my MIL from putting it in the fridge! YOU DON’T EVER PUT A NICE BOTTLE OF VINTAGE RED WINE IN THE FRIDGE!!!

When we go to their cottage (a cute, rustic-like cabin powered only by solar – it IS a very cool place), I do enjoy the view. And we did visit for the day on the Saturday we were there and I brought my Kindle in hopes of catching up on my reading. I never got to – every time I found a quiet spot, I was joined by the rest of them within 5-10 minutes. Which is fine – but they never ask how I am doing or even care to understand or truly know me. I indulge them by listening to their rants and complaints but it’s never really about me. So once again, I’m bored. And I don’t have the piece and quiet to read.

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My only friend during my visit.

I did, however, really enjoyed meeting my husband’s one aunt I had not met yet because she had moved to B.C. when she was very young. She was, as my husband said, the cool aunt. And now I know why! She and her long-term boyfriend (more like common-law as they’ve been with either other for 25 years), with their cool hound-mix dog in tow, drove their camper across the country to visit with the family.

I asked my hubby why she was so different from the rest of his family. His response was simple, “Because she moved away from this place a LONG time ago!”

So there you have it. The people in their small city probably wouldn’t be so grumpy or so jaded if they just all had moved out before the gloominess of the city all go to them – economically, it’s been struggling and I’ve noticed their population on a decent ever since I first visited. Every time I go, I hear the same old rants and raves. It’s like I picked up from where I left off each 12 or so months that I visit with them. My husband has become immune to this T-Bay syndrome but he is fully aware of it. I am just starting to get it – yet it’s hard for me to be around for more than just a weekend. I wish we could stay in a hotel but that would be the death of me if I ever suggested that – a true slap in their faces.

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Home sweet home!

When I left on the Sunday afternoon and stepped on the ferry from our city island airport – I watched the city line of Toronto before me. One thing is for sure, whenever I go to visit my in-laws, I am reminded of how grateful I am to live where I live.

Oh – and what does this have to do with The Shameful Sheep’s post here?

Well, while there, I got attacked by mosquitoes, black flies and some other kind of bug that likes to take a chunk of human flesh out with each bite leaving itchy and painful welts that supposedly take a month to heal, I got 2 bites right in the top crack of my butt. I got it while using the cottage outhouse.

On the way back home, I tried not to scratch it because it would have looked like I was picking my bum.

And that’s why I had The Shameful Sheep in mind when I wrote this post. I’m sure she would be very proud of me if she read this.

Exploring One’s City

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Toronto Harbourfront

When I was in my 20’s, I was constantly downtown. I lived in the far Eastern and worked in the North-East suburbs of Toronto but I was still downtown as much as 4 times a week.

Even then. I hadn’t even come close to exploring all the wonderful gems the city had to offer.

Now, what with career advancements and being a parent, it takes a lot of effort to go downtown. Normally, we need a reason to go. And it’s not because I don’t enjoy going – I love our city and everything it has to offer! I know there’s so much to do in our own city – we actually could do a stay-cation and not have any luck covering all there is to see and do in a week.

Still, I always tell Doug, “We should go more often!” It’s true – we really should make an effort. Parts of the city has changed and we really had no idea. The waterfront, for example, is simply gorgeous now. It always was but the additional work the city has worked on for the past 10 years is all very new to us.

For example, I had no idea they are playing free concerts at the Toronto Music Garden all summer long. All summer long! For FREE! Come on – how much better can it get?

It just goes to show you – never underestimate how many gems one can find right in their own city.

I Lied

Earlier today I posted about how we were going to have a nothing-day.

I’m obviously a big fat liar.

But with the weather the way it was, I just could not pass up an opportunity to hit the trails. Plus, Hobbes the Dog needed his exercise.

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Blue sky, green trails

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Hobbes the Dog on the look out for squirrels