Friday Favorites

Whoohoo! It’s Friday! I never used to understand why people loved Friday so much. But now that I’ve been working a Monday-Friday office job for nearly a year, I really get it. Friday is the best. Which is why I reserve Fridays for talking about my favorite things!

This week, I’m going to be taking a little look back on 2017 to talk about the year in music. More specifically, my favorite songs of 2017.

I decided it is impossible for me to actually rank them because I like them all so much. So, this list of my top 17 songs of 2017 is just in numerical order, rather than the order I like the songs in.

Shape of You – Ed Sheeran

I’m not the biggest Ed Sheeran fan out there. There are even a few songs that I will change the station on if I’m listening to the radio.  In fact, there are only two songs of his that I actually go out of my way to listen to (by putting them on a playlist). Shape of You and Galway Girl are those two songs. This song is just so damn catchy. I wasn’t sold on it at first, but after a few listens, I was hooked.

Swalla – Jason Derulo (feat. Nicki Minaj & Ty Dolla $ign)

Unlike Ed Sheeran, I am a pretty big fan of Jason Derulo. His songs are provocative and a bit racy. They are awesome for dancing, or as a workout playlist. Swalla is no different. Plus the inclusion of the Generous Queen, Nicki Minaj? Oh yeah.

Tip Toe – Jason Derulo (feat. French Montana)

I know, I know, another Jason Derulo? Hell yeah! Listen to this song and tell me it doesn’t make you want to dance. The mister sent me this song one day in either October or November and I’ve probably listened to it once a day or so since. Love it.

Thunder – Imagine Dragons

I only discovered Imagine Dragons with their song Sucker for Pain on the Suicide Squad album. I mean, I’d heard their songs before that, but that was the first one that made me actually learn their name. Now I can add a few more songs to the list of Imagine Dragon songs that speak to me. Thunder resonates with me. I guess it’s because as a teen my biggest dream was to be a musician. I was actually well on my way too. But life happens. It’s nice to live vicariously every now and then through a band that gets that incredible feeling.

Believer – Imagine Dragons

My favorite 1 of ’17 would not be complete without this one from Imagine Dragons. Believer crushes it. It is raw and real in a way few songs manage these days. I can put this on repeat while I’m drawing and just lose myself in it.

Something Just Like This – The Chainsmokers & Coldplay

When I first heard this song in its entirety, I almost cried. Like many, music touches me emotionally. Songs that I love hit me on a level that makes me feel. This song…it’s the way I see the relationship between me and the mister. I know that a lot of times he doesn’t feel like anything special. He’s not a superhero. But he is to me. All my life, all I wanted was something just like what we have. Something just like this.

Chained to the Rhythm – Katy Perry

I love Katy Perry. Serious girl crush going on over here. But her newest album, Witness? Meh. I just can’t get into it. I mean, the songs aren’t exactly bad, but they just didn’t resonate with me the way some of her songs have in the past. All except for Chained to the Rhythm. The irony of putting a song on repeat that talks about putting a song on repeat….

How Long – Charlie Puth

Charlie Puth is another one of those artists that have very, very few songs that I truly like. At least he’s outranked Ed Sheehan with three songs that have made my playlists. I mean, who does not love Marvin Gaye with him and Meghan Trainor? Don’t answer that, because I don’t want to know. Attention is another good one, but my favorite from him this year is How Long. The idea behind the song is just awful, but it has a great beat, and watching him dance in the video is awesome. He looks far too happy to be in so much trouble.

No Frauds – Nicki Minaj (feat. Drake & Lil Wayne)

YAS QUEEN! I can’t believe there was a time (a long time ago, granted) that I didn’t like Nicki Minaj. Then again, I’d never actually listened to her music. I just brushed her off as another rap artist, and since “I don’t like rap”, I didn’t like her. Okay, so I’ve grown out of the whole “I don’t like rap” thing. I don’t like all rap, but then, I don’t like all pop. I don’t like all country. I don’t like all jazz. But there are certain artists in every genre that just slay every time they are in front of a mic. I’m sure you’ve noticed she’s been featured in a few of the other songs on this list, and she probably lends a good bit to why I like those songs so much. No Frauds though…fucking savage. Love it.

Friday

…Are You Ready For It? – Taylor Swift

So we go from that baddest of bitches, Nicki Minah, to Tay-tay. I’m not even going to say that her music is a guilty pleasure. No guilt here. I’ve loved Taylor Swift since she was exclusively on country stations. Her new album? Unlike Katy Perry’s, Taylor’s new album Reputation is killer. It feels like she’s finally grown up and feeling her power and that really comes across in a lot of the new songs on that album. …Are You Ready For It has an awesome beat and seriously kicks ass.

Side to Side – Ariana Grande (feat. Nicki Minaj)

Damn this song is hot. Who doesn’t want a lover that makes you walk like that? Hahaha. This is definitely a not safe for work type of song. And not because of the picture Ariana Grande paints with her lyrics. When you find yourself wondering if Nicki seriously just said something about a dick bicycle? Yes. Yes, she did.

New Rules – Dua Lipa

We’ve all had that boyfriend that kept reeling us back in even when we swore it was over, right? I know I have. This song speaks to that feeling. There is nothing that hits harder in this song than the lyrics “and if you’re under him, you ain’t getting over him.” DAMN RIGHT.

Bad Liar – Selena Gomez

This is a new favorite. Just like New Rules hits that old feeling of when you’re trying to leave, this one reminds me of those initial feelings you get in a new relationship. Selena Gomez has an amazing voice, and this particular song showcases it beautifully.

Havana – Camila Cabello (feat. Young Thug)

Okay, aside from this song being incredible, you have to watch the video. It is hilarious! I loved the song, but when I saw the video, I laughed so hard. It’s difficult to listen to it in the car though. While the mister likes the song too, he always chimes in with “Banana-na-na-na.”

Feels – Calvin Harris (feat. Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry, & Big Sean)

This is such a summer song. The first time I heard it was in December. Something about it reminds me of cruising down the highway with the AC cranked, just going on a road trip with my mister. This is the kind of song that makes me dance in the driver’s seat while the mister and I sing to each other.

This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things – Taylor Swift

Savage AF. I loved just about every song on the Reputation album ( I actually bought the whole album on iTunes!) but this one is probably my favorite one out of all of them. We all know who she’s talking about.

Happy People – Little Big Town

I dare you to listen to this song and not agree. It’s incredibly simple, but so true. This song was my theme song of 2017. I wanted to be happier in 2017 and so I made my own happiness.

2017 was a great year for music. There were a ton of great songs, and not all of my favorites made this list. I only had room for 17 after all! I can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store for music.

 

Mimi’s Friday Favorites

Welcome to a new feature here at Amazing Mimi: Friday Favorites. In my everyday life, I am very much a list maker. I make to-do lists, packing lists, grocery lists…you name it, I can make a list about it. After all, what is a menu, but a list of what you plan to eat?

List

An example of my daily to-do list.

So instead of just talking about one particular thing, I decided that I should make a list! Fridays are now dedicated to a list of favourites from a variety of sources (yes, I have a list of them).

What’s First on the List?

Video games! I am a gamer. Not a hard-core, it’s all I want to do, eat-sleep-breathe-gamer, but I do spend a lot of time playing. We have two gaming computers (desktop and laptop), a Nintendo Switch, X-Box One, and a PS4. I have favourite games that run the gamut from action to simulation to MMORPG. Here is a little more about my all-time favourites.

Mimi’s Top Ten Video Games

10. Might and Magic VIII: Day of the Destroyer

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Released in 2000, this was the very first video game that I played seriously. When I say seriously, I mean staying up until 4am, falling asleep at the keyboard kind of serious. I was SO hooked on this game. Almost twenty years later, I STILL enjoy this game. I found it over on GOG.com, and downloaded it immediately. It was the first time I’d played an rpg, and I haven’t looked back. It is jam-packed with warriors, wizards, vampires and fantastic creatures. The story itself is pretty interesting as well. This is the 8th in a long series of games, but I can’t speak to how the others play. I’ve tried playing other Might and Magic games, but I never got them to work on the computers I had.

9. Fable II

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First, I played the original. But Fable II. Oh man, I love this game so hard. This was the reason I got an XBox 360. Aside from the absolutely infuriating ending, this is hands down the best game in the franchise. Don’t get me wrong, I love the original, and I even really enjoyed the Fable III, but this beautiful game is another that holds a special place in my gamer heart. Beautiful landscapes, large open world, puzzles, action, humor…it hits all my buttons.

8. Mario Cart 8

Mario Cart - Game List

I love racing games, but I came a little bit late to the Mario Cart party. Before we got a Wii U, I’d never tried this game aside from at the arcade. But the mister is a Nintendo fan, and so we got this when we got our new Switch, along with some little steering wheel controllers. This is one of a small handful of games that I love to play with someone else. There is something very special about sitting on our little love seat, throwing shells at each other, laughing, cursing, and making sure that we both come in the top three.

7. The Wolf Among Us

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Telltale Games series are Amazing. I haven’t played a single one that I haven’t thoroughly enjoyed. But The Wolf Among Us takes the cake. Based on Bill Willingham‘s Fables comic series, the story is engrossing and chilling. It takes childhood fantasy characters and turns them into heroes, villains, and anti-heroes. I don’t want to give anything away on the plot, but I cannot wait until the next season comes out in 2018.

6. Assassin’s Creed: The Ezio Collection

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I can’t just say Assassin’s Creed 2, because all three of these games have to be played together to understand the full story. The original Assassin’s Creed introduced us to a world of intrigue and death, but this takes the story to a whole new level. Altair was a bit lacking in the personality department, but there is no such problem with Ezio. Charming and hell-bent on avenging his family, and then furthering the cause of the Assassins, Ezio is what made me fall in love with this franchise, both as a young, brash rogue and as an older, wiser mentor.

5. The Sims 4

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I’ve been playing the Sims since it first came out. In fact, that game got me through a rough first year with my son! I’ve had every incarnation of this game ever since, and it has never been disappointing. There is something so cathartic about making a nice little sim, with a nice little house and nice little life, then putting them in a room with no door and only a fireplace….

Ahem. The Sims 4 gives us all new graphics, more personalities, a wealth of options for careers, living situations, relationships, hobbies, and ways to die. This game makes my list just because I can spend hours building and designing. It’s definitely a creative outlet for those who love building games.

4. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag

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Edward Kenway, mmmmm. Um, I mean…Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag is the second Assassin’s game to make my top ten, and it’s not just because Edward Kenway is incredibly hot for a video game character. That’s part of it, but not all of it. This is definitely my favourite of the Assassin’s games, however, for a reason other than the main character: Ship battles. The gameplay in Black Flag is incredible. The puzzles are more difficult, the enemies more varied, and the music is awesome. Collecting shanties is one of the best side quests in the game.

Being anonymous outside the animus was a little strange, and I didn’t like it as much as playing Desmond Miles. Ubisoft hit on a winning personality for Edward Kenway, much as they did with Ezio Auditore, and unlike the unfortunate interim character of Connor Kenway (that one might fit on a top 10 most awful games list).

3. Final Fantasy XIV

Game list

The only MMORPG to make my list of favourites, Final Fantasy XIV is really amazing. I enjoyed World of Warcraft, but I eventually got a bit bored with doing the exact same things over and over again. Some might argue that Final Fantasy XIV isn’t much different, but I find it to be vastly more entertaining.

The actual story is engaging, and you don’t have to belong to a specific faction based on the race you choose. There is a multitude of ways to advance your levels as opposed to just a handful. This keeps the game fresh and aids in levelling multiple classes without getting too frustrated to continue. This is my favourite game to play with the mister since we can run around together and help each other fight monsters, and defeat dungeons.

2. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

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You had to know this would be on here. I can count on two fingers the people I know who don’t like this game. It is the quintessential fantasy RPG! I’ve been playing it since 2011, and I still have never completed the entire game. The main quests, yes. But I am a completionist when it comes to games, and I’ve never found everything or explored every location. So, every time I play this game, I find something new and exciting about it to love.

The expansions make the gameplay more versatile and in depth. There is also the bonus of being able to download mods that almost give you an entirely new game, depending on which ones you opt to download. I have a feeling that The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is going to go down as a legend among video games. Consider: a version of the game is coming out for the Nintendo Switch. People (including us) have had it preordered for MONTHS.

1. Fallout 4

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Another masterpiece from Bethesda, Fallout 4 tops my list of all-time favourite video games. I wasn’t really a fan of the other Fallout games, but the mister insisted that I give this one a shot. I’m sure he regrets that now. It combines so many things that I love. I can be a sneaky, sneaky sniper, but I can also build huge, sprawling communities. Mods galore change up the gameplay and in-game choices affect your relationships with companions and strangers alike.

I have a secret about this game: I’ve never finished the main quest. I get so sidetracked, and there are so many cool things to do that I’ve never actually been able to play long enough to find out what happens at the end. I’ve been playing this game for years! I get about halfway through the main quest and then a new DLC comes out and I start playing that. Like Skyrim, this game will probably remain on our game shelf for many, many years to come.

Well, there you have it. If you are looking to immerse yourself for hours, days, weeks, or even months into a game, these are ten solid choices that I can recommend to anyone. Happy Gaming!


Daily Dose of Music