21 Things To Do While 21

There are plenty of lists telling you of things to do before you’re 21, or on your 21st birthday, but what about the 12 months during it? Well as I recently celebrated my 22nd birthday, I put together a list of things I have and would have liked to have done during that milestone year. Believe it or not, you’re not going to be forever 21, so might as well make the most of it. Truth be told, you can do these things at 22, 30, 46, 67 and 99 and if you’re a trust fund kid living in Montreal even 18, but 21 things to do at 55 just doesn’t ring as a title.

1. Buy yourself a drink you’ve never had.
You’re legal all over the world dammit, so flash that ID like you mean it. Step out of your comfort zone and steer clear of the words “cranberry” and “vodka”, especially together. Try that weird looking name like the Freddy Fudpucker or Dirty Diaper, or that concoction that couldn’t possibly taste good with all the random ingredients in it. It just might win the title of your new favorite drink… or may end up spit on the floor, but you’ll never know the outcome unless you try!

New Orleans French Quarter2. Visit a place you’ve never been.
A new country would be nice. But hey, by the look of your dinner menu that consisted of mac and cheese and ramen noodles for the past oh I don’t know five months, I understand cash is low. So let’s settle for a new city. Somewhere you can get to if you just jump into a car or a bus.

3. Update your wardrobe.
It’s about time those Hollister and Abercrombie graphic tees are thrown into a trash can Salvation Army donation box. When shopping, instead of going for straight for the sweatpants, opt for something more dressy. You’ll soon be making the transition from classroom to office and it’ll be nice to have some staples already waiting for you in the closet. Sweatpants will soon be a thing for inside your house/apartment.

4. Show appreciation towards your parents/guardians.
If you’re lucky, you still live with them which means home cooked meals are the norm, you have an endless amount of fresh underwear (thanks to a mother who’s gracious enough to do your laundry), the words “electricity” and “bills” are non-existent and you get a goodnight kiss before bed. Your parents, whether you live with them or not, have taken care of you for a long time and now is a good time to let them know how thankful you are. Apparently folks also appreciate a nice dinner out, flowers or a monetary gift. They’ve spoiled you for 21 years, maybe instead of opting for that keg, you can use your spare change to give back.

5. Write a letter to yourself in ten years.
Your life is going to be drastically different when you’re 31. If life goes the way society expects it to, you’ll probably be married maybe even with a kid or two. Tell yourself the hopes and dreams you have at 21 and what you wish you’ve accomplished by 31. Spill your problems and decisions that you’re currently dealing with, which when you read this in the future will all end up seeming trivial.

6. Invest your money.
If you have money to spare, take a risk and invest it whether in a stock, a bond or a thing. You may be rewarded financially greatly in the future.

firend7. Get in touch with a long lost friend from high school.
Can you believe it’s been four years since you’ve left the comforting (or constraining depending how your experience was) walls of high school? The supposedly second best four years of your life (first is college, again depending how your experience was). I’m sure if you pull up that dusty yearbook and take a look through, you’ll come across some not-so-familiar faces that you saw every day. Look up your friends on Facebook and shoot them a simple, “hey how’s it going” message. You may get R-bombed, you will may get a “who is this?” response but with some people you’ll go back to talking as if nothing has changed. You can thank Mark Zuckerberg later.

8. Delete all your exes on social media.
If you still talk to them and are friends, cool. If not, unfriend and unfollow and make moving on Facebook official. There’s no need to be reminded of what you missed out on every time you scroll through your newsfeed or dashboard.

9. Quit something.
Whether it’s a bad habit, a job that you hate, or even a deadly relationship. Now is as good a time as any to say goodbye to the things or people in your life that are bringing you down. Obviously, go through the pros and cons first and make sure it’s a good decision.

10. Start something.
Honestly you’ve never know how good you are at something until you try. You may have not had parents who you signed up for every single sport or class as a child, but that doesn’t have to stop you from ever trying tennis or cricket or ballet. You may have passed your prime age to take the sport to the competitive level and become a professional, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be the star player on your house league team. Convinced you have not a single athletic bone in your body? That’s cool, embrace what you were gifted with and start something using that. Writers can start a blog, leaders/go-getters can start a business. The possibilities are truly endless.

11. Create a blog.
Maybe you’re not super talented when it comes to writing or photography, but that shouldn’t stop you from blogging, even if it’s just for yourself. Creating a blog gives you a free platform to express yourself and share your interests. I understand that WordPress can be daunting for beginners, so just sign up for tumblr and join the simple world of reblogging.

Nasty Gal #Girlboss book by Sophia Amoruso12. Read a self-help book.
Enough of that unrealistic fiction, try reading something that will help you become a better person, achieve your goals and motivate you. Okay so maybe unrealistic fiction can in fact do all of the above, but maybe try something that’s sole purpose is that.

13. Spend some time volunteering.
During this time in your life, a time when your wallet is usually starving, and your drowning in debt, working for free is probably the last thing on your to-do list. However, there are many rewards that come with helping out, though they aren’t financial. Just one hour a week can make a difference in your community, a person’s life or in the larger spectrum, the world. Volunteering also gives you one extra thing to add to that oh-so-important resume.

14. Edit your resume.
Think about the last time you opened up your resume. Was it three years ago when you walked through the entire mall handing one to every store? Regardless, you’ve gained many more skills and experiences since then and now is a good time to update the piece of paper that’s going to sell you to employers. You may have already graduated college or will be soon, and it’s nice to have a more recent document to work off of instead of trying to desperately remember what you did during the past three years as a sales associate.

Business Card Design for writers and journalists15. Create a business card for yourself.
They say networking is key to landing a job. Who is they and is what they’re saying true? I have no clue. But it doesn’t hurt to have some professional cards in your wallet at all times, if you do run into someone important or helpful.

16. Recreate an old photograph.
You’ve probably seen them take over the internet. Those brilliant two pictures, one from 1999 and one from 2014, where its subjects are in the relatively same location wearing the relatively same clothes in the relatively same pose. Why not go ahead and follow this fabulous trend yourself, whether it’s with family members, friends or solo? When you look at that photograph, every time you do it’ll make you laugh. (Get my Nickelback reference? No? I don’t blame you.)

17. Clean out your computer.
Our mothers and roommates constantly nag us to clean up after ourselves. We take the time to clean our rooms, clean our closets, clean every inch of our homes but when do we really set aside time to clean our computer. From the documents to the downloads, I’m sure there’s hundreds of unwanted files taking up space. You know it’s about time for a cleanup when you can’t even see what your desktop background is any more.

18. Film a vlog.
Whether it’s while you’re at an event, or on vacation or just sitting at home, a vlog is basically a fancy modern way of saying home video. Keep it for yourself to view in the future or share it with others. It’s just a great way to capture memories.

Filming on camera19. Post a video on YouTube.
Whether you do so with the intention of becoming the next big YouTube guru with your DIY tutorials, to make that home video of your hilarious baby cousin go viral or so you can look back on how you talked twenty years from now, it doesn’t really matter. From vlogs to channelling your inner Steven Spielberg by creating a short film, YouTube is the perfect outlet to post your stuff. And you don’t even have to make your video public!

20. Sign up for a community class.
It’s the perfect way to start something new, or refine and practice a skill you already have. And you get to make new friends doing so! When you commit to signing up for a class you actually paid money for like Kickboxing, you’re more motivated to actually go and do something, rather than saying, oh I’ll just exercise at home.

21. Set some goals for the future.
Think about your future. For the first time in a long time it’s probably unplanned, and unexpected. You’ve most likely been a student for the past 16 years of your life and now it’s time to move on. Few of you will know exactly where you will be in one or two years, let alone an entire decade from now. This is the time to plan out exactly what you want to do, where you want to be and how you’re going to get there. Time to go HAM on life! (No one says that any more do they…)

…and if you think you’re going to be forever 21, then repeat every year.

As published on Thought Catalog.

8 things to keep you occupied during your weeklong break from school

We all appreciate the freedom that is A) Reading Week B) Spring Break or C) March Break depending on your school. It’s a week without classes, homework, tests and essays. While at first you’re super excited to sleep in and spend your days in your pajamas watching Netflix and keeping tabs on social media, after a while boredom tends to creep in and you feel like you’re going crazy. Because let’s face it, there are only so many reruns you can watch and after a while even Facebook starts to get redundant. Luckily we’ve got a list of things to do.

1. Cook/bake something new.
Whether cooking is something you do on a daily basis or the oven and stove are foreign objects to you, now is a great time to dust off those recipe books and put those Pinterest recipes to good use. Try creating a dish and surprising your family with dinner or bake a cake from scratch. Cooking is a valuable skill to have and practice makes perfect! As a bonus, you can go back to school not have to eat Mac and Cheese or Ramen noodles every night.

2. Host a movie marathon.
When you’re not going to class everyday, you’re also not seeing your friends everyday which can be a total bummer! A movie marathon at your house is the perfect opportunity to get together and catch up with everyone. You can choose to watch a trilogy from beginning to end, or select a theme for the night like rom-coms or horror.

3. Take part in a community class.
At this point in your life you may already know exactly what your talents and your skills are or you could be confused about who you are and still on the road to self-discovery. Taking part in a drop-in class is a great way to challenge yourself to try something new, while finding a hidden passion. Your hands could be perfect for sculpting clay vases or your legs powerful enough to conquer kickboxing; you’ll never know unless you try.

4. Travel to somewhere you’ve never been.
Of course as a student, your wallet is probably starving, so it’s not expected of you to buy a plane ticket and fly off to Ibiza. Though if you have the funds or generous parents, it’s highly recommended. But trips can be made to places just 30 minutes away to the city next to you. Being a tourist allows you to see new places, experience new things and make memories. A change in scenery is the perfect antidote to a very bored mind.

5. Complete a DIY project.
D0-it-yourself projects seem to be everywhere! From YouTube to Tumblr to Pinterest to even here on faze.ca! The possibilities are endless and really cater to all interests. Interior decorators can create a snazzy bookshelf, tech geeks can make their own phone and tablet cases while fashionistas can turn old clothes into new. DIY projects save you money but will cost you time, but with the completion of one comes a new skill gained, satisfaction and bragging rights. “Whoa, so that’s not from IKEA?” is going to be the common question you’ll be hearing from friends.

6. Reconnect with an old friend.
Having a week off from your classmates gives you the opportunity to invest time in those long lost friends. You know, your best friend from the eighth grade or your homeroom buddy from high school. As you get older, you also get busier, and keeping relationships takes a lot of time and effort. However, you’ll find that all it takes is a simple “hey, how are you doing?” message to rekindle what was once a great friendship. This week is also the perfect week to reach out to people since most will be home from school or also enjoying a break.

7. Clean and organize.
Cleaning your room and closet is the obvious choice and one that your mom will rejoice at. But what about your phone, tablet and computer? Electronics get clogged up with junk a lot and need a good cleaning out once in a while. On your phone and/or tablet, delete all of the apps you haven’t used in the past few months (Because really, who plays Temple Run anymore?). Check through your photo gallery and delete any unwanted pictures; you’ll be surprised how many blurry and empty pictures you’ll find in there. One of these days your memory is going to get full and you’ll be scrambling to delete pictures in order to capture the moment that’s happening right then. Your computer is a much bigger task, with so many folders to go through. Everything from your desktop to documents to downloads should have a good clean through. Also try organizing everything by creating folders, so it’s much easier to find stuff.

8. Read a book.
This may sound like the last thing you’d want to do during your break from school, but believe it or not before television and the internet, books used to be a form of entertainment. Oh wait, they still are! A good and interesting book can take you into another world, have you sitting on the edge of your seat, getting attached to the characters and feeling lost when you’ve turned the last page. There are many genres to dive into but if you’re not sure where to start, your best bet is checking out the soon-to-be movie adaptations like Divergent or The Fault in Our Stars.


100 Things To Do in Toronto

While on my daily date night with the internet, I happened to stumble upon this great list that any Torontonian, Canadian or any one else for that matter might enjoy. Sometimes when visiting a city, it’s best to leave the guide books and tourist attraction lists behind.
Note:This list was not composed by me, it’s simply a repost.

Toronto skyline

1. Lie face down on the glass floor at the CN Tower
2. Sit upstairs at Union Station during rush hour
3. Skate at Nathan Phillips Square
4. Tour the Steam Whistle Brewery
5. Have a hot chocolate at Soma in The Distillery District
6. Do a bike tour of Toronto Island
7. Go shopping at Honest Ed’s
8. Walk the boardwalk at The Beach
9. Go to Dundas Square
10. Dine at a famous chef’s restaurant
11. Take a city walking tour and check out jane’s walk
12. Get out of the downtown core
13. Ride the 501 Queen Streetcar
14. Go shopping in Chinatown
15. Go to Kensignton Market Pedestrian Sundays
16. Window shop in Yorkville
17. Eat corn on the sidewalk in Little India in the summer
18. Take a train ride through High Park
19. Walk the entire PATH
20. Check out a local band
21. Sample honey at St. Lawrence Market
22. Tour the CBC building
23. Eat Souvlaki on The Danforth
24. Have dinner in Little Italy
25. Read in the garden at Casa Loma
26. Come face to face with a dinosaur at the ROM
27. Visit the AGO for free
28. Sample free beer at the Mill St Brewery in the Distillery District
29. Explore the Toronto alleys
30. Go to the Ontario Science Center
31. Check out the parks running north from the Don Valley – (ride a bike from the lake through the Don Valley all the way up through Serena Gundy Park and all the way up to Sunnybrook Park or Edward’s Gardens – there are trails all the way up, lots of cool stuff in there.)
32. High Park is also pretty cool
33. Cherry Beach (sorry no real official link to cherry beach)
34. Sunnyside Park beaches
35. Tommy Thompson Park
36. Bluffers Park
37. Ice skating between Toronto Islands
38. Spent the last Sunday of the month (only from May to October)at Kensington Market – Pedestrian-only streets
39. Go buy some Whiskey Cheddar from Global Cheese in Kensington Market and eat it because I just had some and this stuff is seriously delicious. (as stated by ROB_K)
40. Check out the Working and Historical Post Office on Adelaide St East
41. Any historical house, ie: mackenzie, spadina, etc..
42. riverdale farm/cabbagetown especially when the festivals are on
43. Tobogganing down riverdale park east hill.. the west side has a baseball diamond now.. may be a bit dangerous!
44. Sunbathing at hanlan’s point clothing optional beach
45. Watch a movie at one of Toronto’s many film festivals
46. Help put together a free community feast with Food Not Bombs
47. Have a coffee in the cafe at the corner of Baldwin and Augusta before 8AM on a weekday and watch the people who pass before they go to work
48. Visit LCBO Summerhill to glory in the past, marvel in the present, as the immaculately restored North Toronto Railway Station (Circa 1916) is now the largest and most fascinating wine & spirits store in Canada.
49. Fair Trade coffee & delicious sandwiches at Tinto’s on Roncesvalles
50. Join the Caribana Parade
51. Brickworks Farmer’s Market (May – Oct) and for that matter, biking in and around the Brickworks
52. Checking out the view of Toronto from hill next to Brickworks
53. Check out where Lake Ontario meets Scarberia (near Port Union Station)
54. Watch the sun rise/set from the end of the Leslie Spit
55. The Junction Arts Fest in September (one of Toronto’s best kept secrets)
56. Bike the Humber River Trail
57. Friday Community Picnic in Dufferin Grove Park
58. Bonfire on beach out in Scarborough (near Morningside I think)
59. Promise Party at the Beaches
60. Sunnybrook Park (horses are in the back of the park, in the stables)
61. Biking the Ex at night during spring when no one is around, spooky.
62. Go to for an ice cream at the Dutch Cafe (funny building and awesome assortment of ice cream!)
63. Dive into Pomegranate deliciousness at marouf tochal
(everything is made of pomegranate: juice, dried fruit, ice cream, marmelade…YUM!)
64. Take a walk from the beaches westward to sunnyside park on the boardwalk (or bike)
65. Take the carillon tour with Gerald from CS.
66. Get your hands on the ceramic wheel at the Gardiner Museum on Fridays and Sundays
67. Enjoy an aperitif with view from the rooftop bar of the Park Hyatt
68. Go to a concert at the beautiful Roy Thomson Hall (and find discounted tickets on sale the same day)
69. Watch Rocky Horror Picture Show at Bloor Cinema on Halloween at midnight
70. Read a book in Queen’s Park Spring/Summer/Fall which is also home to Ontario Legislative Assembly
71. Mutahdi’s Drumming Festival (July – Queen’s Park)
72. Kick Ass Karaoke
73. Brunch in St. Lawrence Market
74. Picnic on Toronto Islands
75. Plant trees in with Bring Back the Don
76. The AIDS Memorial (behind the 519 on church)
77. Eat at Zelda’s (On Yonge Street)
78. Play a round of manhunt
79. Visit Ireland Park down at the waterfront
80. Audit a lecture by one of Toronto’s (semi-)famous professors: Mark Kingswell, Nick Mount, etc
81. Take in a concert of one of Toronto’s Talented music acts
82. Pay a visit to 401 Richmond
83. Visit the actual Distillery District
84. Watch the real pros play basketball at Harbourfront Community Centre outdoor courts
85. Wychwood Barns an exciting project they have going with the STOP
86. Harbourfront Festivals (any weekend starting from May – September) there’s Hot N Spicy, Ukranian, Askenazi, Chinese… showcases the diversity of Toronto.
87. Sample Polish or Ukranian desserts in roncesvalles/Bloor West Village
88. Eat at the world’s only Hungarain Thai restaurant in Kensington Market
89. Participate in Improv at Bad Dog Theatre
90. Museum of Inuit Art on your way to Harbourfront
91. Check out Matador’s a late night after hours club
92. Jazz festival in the Beach
93. Check out one of the many historical churches in the city like; St. Michael’s, St. James’, St. Patrick’s, etc..
94. check out the Fringe Fest
95. “Dream in High Park” plays presented during the summer
96. Shop at Active Surplus
97. Check out clay and paper theater
98. Check out the Santa Claus Parade
99. Check out WinterCity
100. If Batman is in town, this is where you will find him; Sneaky Dees