my top tv shows, movies & music of 2016

You know i don’t know if anyone will ever read this, so perhaps it is just for me to look back on, or perhaps my kids some day… or maybe you are looking for some tips or at least verification of what you think is best too.

I will write a best books of 2016 as well, but for now this will focus on best tv show, movies and music of 2017.

These are my favorites… things i saw or listened to. They are things i enjoyed and perhaps influenced me in some ways. They are things i would recommend (well for the most part i suppose).

I usually feel like i don’t have time for anything, but i still managed to watch a lot and even listen to some music. Most music was whatever was on the radio, and so the radio station airplay plays a big part in my list… Mostly praise music, which was intentional… that list will be longer so it will be at the end…

Movies this year were Terrible! I didn’t get to watch a couple big movies (like Rouge One or Dr. Strange), they’ll make the list next year i’m sure, then again, if i miss a window who knows when i’ll see anything. Like always most movies i saw were on the plane.

Wound up watching a lot of tv – though almost all i watched was on Netflix or on youtube.

Top Ten Tv shows of 2016

  1. James Corden

I wanted to include Last Week Tonight by James Oliver, but he wasn’t quite as memorable. Jimmy fallon & Jimmy Kimmel still have their moments, but this year belonged to Corden – not that i ever watched any of these late night shows, as Kimmel pointed out in one bit, we just watch it the next day on youtube… and Corden killed it with his carpool Karaokes and having actors act out all their movies…


  1. Fraiser 

Image result for frasier

Frasier comes highly recommended by David Lowry (among others), so we began watching it.

It is astonishing to me that some actually watch this show without ever seeing or hearing about Cheers! What? What? The only reason to watch this show is b/c it was a Cheers spin-off and clearly the best shows were the ones where old cheers characters appear… This makes the list as a pure volume play. Soo watched nearly 7 seasons… i watched a bunch here and there. There was some good ones, but i never quite into it (then again if Soo didn’t watch without me maybe i would have got into it more).

  1. SNL

Again i never stayed up and watched it, but there were quite a few good clips. Larry David as Bernie Sanders was awesome, i could watch it over and over again. More, they don’t appear as people just using SNL to get a jump into movies, but actually doing good bits

  1.  Parenthood

Image result for parenthood
We finally finished watching Parenthood and after a rocky 5th season, they totally redeemed themselves, concreting it as one of my favorite all-time tv shows. Compared to other shows, we it seemed like we barely watched, but it was still really good.

  1. friends

Always fun to go back and watch friends.

  1. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Quirky and funny, along with some good story line. It is a perfect Netflix show because once you get into it, you want to just keep on watching.

  1. Voltron

This was one of my favorites when i was aImage result for voltron netflix kid. I am so glad my kids like to watch it too. Better than some of the others, it is
not too creepy. They change some things from the original, but i still like it. The story line is pretty good, and the end made me curious for where they are going with the story. It had a number of funny things in it, and a lot of surprising stuff too.

Image result for voltron netflix

  1. black~ish

Image result for blackish
The only show on tv we watch. The show is great. I relate a lot to Dre so i laugh a lot. But it also continue to attack big issues, real life issues. The show makes you laugh but also gives you something to think about and talk about. And teaches you something too.

  1. Master of None

I really wanted this to be #1. We need more Indians on tv. And while i hated ToImage result for master of nonem Haverford, i quite liked Dev. Again this character is me: Indecisive, Ignorant of some things, Indian. There is some raunchy stuff- the first scene is a sex scene. But it tells a very accurate story of milenials, of culture today and addresses issues as well as continues to be funny.

Image result for stranger things

  1. Stranger Things

This was the show. It was only 8 epsiodes. Maybe not a season i’ll ever rewatch. But it was amazing. Every episode hooked you. The acting was spot on. It had a lot of nostolgia, and a lot of creativity. It kept you in suspense. And even tugged at other emotions like joy, romance and some funny moments too. Best show of 2016


As a side note, there was a thing going around of 3 tv characters that reflect you- mine were: Dre from blackish, Dev from Master of None, and JD from Scrubs (if i could include more, it would be Jerry from Seinfeld, Elliot from scrubs, Joey from friends) (if it could include movie characters: Todd Anderson from Dead poets society, and just about anyone Mark Ruffalo plays)


Best movies of 2016

I thought movies were pretty bad, but there were some really good ones. They are almost all kid movies. I’ll give you my best first.

  1. Zootopia    10/10
    Halle loves it, Josiah enjoyed it. And they missed most of the jokes. Some funny stuff in it, Fun to watch throughout. Yet, it is very deep. Good story line, without having any death in it. Some parts may get scary for kids i suppose, but not too bad. There is a mystery which is fun. And a lot to make you think about how we view and treat others
  2. The Help    10/10
    This is an old movie, but we watched it this year and we were amazed. The acting was amazing, everyone did such a good job.Image result for meet the patels 
  3. Peanuts    9/10
    i liked the story, obviously fun.
  4. Meet the Patels    8.9/10
    A documentary, meant to be humurous. I loved it. I thought it gave some insight too. But mostly i enjoyed it because it felt real to me. 
  5. the big short    8.7/10
    Interesting and entertaining. Good Acting. Good story. May make you angry.
  6. Finding Dory    8/10
    Better than finding nemo in my opinion, as it wasn’t as sad. Funnier than i expected. 
  7. Captain America: Civil War     7.4/10
    Not sure why everyone loved this movie. It was ok. It certainly was entertaining. Paul Rudd always awesome, but he is barely in it. Spiderman was probably the star, but he’s barely in it too. The plot was kinda weak, like most of the Avenger movies – like really?
  8. Kung Fu Panda 3     7.2/10
    Not that great honestly, but entertaining. Lots of names in it
  9. 13th     7.2/10
    Documentary on the 13th amendment. Worth a watch. I am convinced people will believe what they want to believe. I think it is something for us to really consider. 
  10. 50/50
    I like Joseph gordon Levitt. Fairly sad tone, well done.

Favorite songs of 2016

  1. Trust in You by Lauren Daigle
  2. Your love is greater (Your love awakens me) by Phil Wickham
  3. Good Good Father by Chris Tomlin 
  4. Great Are You Lord by All sons & daughters
  5. King of the World by Natalie Grant
  6. Lion & Lamb by Big Daddy Weave
  7. Try everything by Shakira
  8. All the poor & powerless by All sons & daughters 
  9. Holy Spirit byFrancesca Battastelli
  10. Ever Be by Aaron Shust 
  11. Move (soldier keep walking) by Toby Mac
  12. No Longer a slave to fear
  13. You’re beautiful by Phil wickham
  14. 10,000 reasons by Matt redman
  15. For me to live is Christ by the sidewalk prophets 
  16. Give me faith
  17. Can’t stop the feeling by Justin Timberlake
  18. Your Love is wild by Leeland
  19. First by Lauren Daigle
  20. God is on the move
  21. Love Ran Red by Chris Tomlin
  22. Thy Will by Hillary Scott
  23. Sinking Deep by HillsongY&F
  24. Great I Am 
  25. One call away (superman) by Charlie Puth
  26. Breathe by Johnny Diaz
  27. 7 years old by Lukas Graham
  28. One True God by SCC
  29. What you want by Tenth Ave N
  30. Unsteady by Ambassadors
  31. Break every chain by Jesus cultue
  32. Christ is Enough for me by Hillsong
  33. Armor Song
  34. Jesus by Chris Tomlin
  35. Let me love you by DJ Snake & justin Bieber
  36. The God I know by Love & the outcome
  37. Live it well by switchfoot 
  38. Forever by Kari Jobe
  39. Dear younger me by mercy me
  40. Live like you’re loved by Hawk Nelson
  41. River by Jordan Feliz
  42. Love yourself by Justin Bieber
  43. Fierce by Jesus Culture

My weekly Review Week 1 2016

Reflection on 2016 week 1

10 things i am thankful for

  1. my beautiful wife and her 35 years of life
  2. gift of time – no appointments, nothing pressing, no meetings – time to write, read a bit, be with my family a lot
  3. good Christian books… though i didn’t love them
  4. Your Word- which was much more powerful in itself
  5. Gift of singing! i have loved having a song in my head and on my lips every day, in response to what i was reading or whatever… singing a lot of praise!
  6. warmth – hot showers, blankets, fireplace, and nice weather
  7. my kids- even if they drove me crazy a lot. They also warmed my heart a ton
  8. The Holowells- for watching our kids, but also for their friendship!
  9. free food and drinks (chik-fil-A, coffee)
  10. beautiful snow- even if it makes driving crazy


  1. Halle sitting in my lap, watching football
  2. no conflict with Soo
  3. writing a lot
  4. beginning the new year with worship, and singing a lot
  5. playing with kids
  6. doing pretty well with most of my goals
    1. not snacking after 8 (though i made a sandwich last night)
    2. praying with Soo
    3. reading daily devos (not each every day, but pretty close)
    4. devos, praying with kids
    5. reading a good amount
    6. getting some time with the Lord for the most part
    7. writing
  7. reading
  8. lots of time w Soo
  9. watching Master of None
  10. celebrating Soo, ice-skating
  11. watching a few minutes of football

Themes of the week

  1. reading & praying with the family
  2. singing praise
  3. enjoying freedom
  4. celebrating Soo – or trying to
  5. writing
  6. beginnings of working on mpd
  7. Victory over the grave, over death, over sin

songs of the week

  1. Sinking Deep
  2. Good good Father
  3. Forever
  4. I will follow
  5. Christ is enough
  6. This is amazing Grace
  7. Great are You lord
  8. Holy Spirit
  9. I surrender all
  10. love ran red
  11. Everlasting God
  12. Same power


What did God teach me, speak to me about Himself, myself

  1. death, grave, sin – they cannot overcome me
  2. The Lord is a refuge and shield around me
  3. His divine power has given me everything
  4. i am defensive and rationalize sin
  5. i seek, pursue fame


My best of 2015 lists

i love lists… God, Soo, Halle & Josiah, chocolate, sports, lists

And there’s not much better than a best of list!

This is my list of what i read and what i saw this year. You can read the best of best of list if you want to know what other experts think.

Top Ten books i read in 2015

10. life is a vapor (John Piper)
9. Taking God at His Word (DeYoung)
8. Generous Justice (Keller)
7. Unquenchable Worshipper (Matt Redman)
6. Every body matters (Gary Thomas)
5. boundaries with kids (Cloud)
4. Blind-sided by God (Peter Chin)
3. Praying life (Paul Miller)
2. faith is not a feeling (Ney Bailey)
1. Seeking Allah, finding Jesus (Nabel Quereshi)

i didn’t really read many books in 2015, especially considering i read 4 of those in one month in EA, and 2 others during the flights when i went back in December… in all i think i finished 15-16 books, but 8 were really good.

We did finally finish “starting your marriage out right,” it just took us 6 years to finish! didn’t include it in this list, though it was good.

The top 4 all would fit into all-time favorites, but picking the best out of the top 2 was incredibly difficult

I almost chose faith is not a feeling, because God used it so much in my life. I had been looking for the book for a couple years, and finally found it for 75c at the used bookstore right before leaving  for EA. I read it, Soo read it, and then what 3-4 more people read it over the summer.

It’s a pretty simple book, but perhaps that is what made it sooooo good. Real life stories, just faith. Moving beyond feeling, choosing faith, choosing to trust God.
AND it’s short, short chapters, quick read, easy. i loved the book, and recommend everyone read it.

In the end, i had to go with Seeking Allah, finding Jesus because it was such a compelling read. i really couldn’t put it down. Every time i would read part of it, i would exclaim to  Soo “This book is so fascinating!”
i read it in less than a week, lent it to another guy who read it 4 days, and another guy- a non-reader, who read it in 2!
The book reads like a story, but gives so much info.
It is a great training tool to understand the mind of a Muslim, get a better grip on Islam, instruct on how to love well, as well as how to share the Gospel.
And in the end, tell a powerful story of God’s love, grace and power.

Faith is not a feeling may have been more life-changing, more helpful. Seeking Allah finding Jesus is more memorable and more unique.

The next few books were good too. Blind-sided by God was also captivating, and hit on the theme of faith in the midst of trials. i loved the book. It hit all the feels, was challenging and encouraging at the same time.

boundaries with kids was convicting- b/c though it was talking about kids, i felt like it was talking about me!

Every body matters tackled a topic that you rarely if ever hear about at church, and Generous justice gave compelling arguments for how we interact with the poor and how we live.

i could say so much more about any of those top 8 books

I’d love to hear your recommendations!

Top Ten movies i saw in 2015

i wound up watching a lot of movies in 2015, which shocked me, but then i realized i watched about 11 on planes this year… The movies i saw were mostly disappointments. Some had their moments. But i rather enjoyed trailers, but didn’t care for movies. Actually none of the trailers made me think they would be that good either… in any rate…

10.  Star Wars episode VII
9. Chef
8. Avengers 2, Ant-man, Thor 2
7. Wreck it Ralph
6. Inside-out
5. Insurgent
4. Theory of everything
3. Mission Impossible: Ghost protocol
2. Perks of being a wallflower
1. Birdman

The only movie i really liked was Birdman. It was well done. But not one i really want to see again. The wallflower one was pretty good, though Soo didn’t like it. Inside-out had it’s moments, but it wasn’t everything everyone was saying it was.
i did like the Marvel movies. Thor 2 was actually a good story… but man, the original Iron man was great, and the stories just get kinda more ridiculous… Chef wasn’t that great, but it was like the only feel-good movie i saw during the year… and star wars? Well, it felt like just watching episode IV all over again, and more like the long-awaited sequel to space balls… but i am hopeful the story improves once we get the rest of the story…

Top 10 Tv shows
Didn’t watch much, but there was one show that was amazing!
10. Jimmy Kimmel
9. Brooklyn 99
8. master chef
7. How I met your mother
6. Wild Krats
5. friends
4. seinfeld
3. Jimmy Fallon
2. fresh off the boat
1. black~ish
If you’re not watching blackish, you need to, it is amazing… maybe i just relate to the main guy so much, or maybe i like how it tackles real issues, but mostly i like it because i think it is hilarious.
Wild krats is the best kids show out there… Jimmy Fallon & Jimmy Kimmel i just watch on youtube

Top 15 songs of 2015
15. First ~ Lauren Daigle
14. sinking deep (just from the last week)
13. Uptown funk (a much as i don’t want to like this song)
12. Dynamite
11. Everything is Awesome (still awesome)
10. fight song ~ Rachel Platten
9. Good Good Father ~ Chris Tomlin
8. Same power ~ Jeremy Camp
7. Thrive ~ Casting Crowns
6. T Swift songs  (style, blank space, shake it off)
5. bat blood ( T swift parody video) that my kids love (and me too).
4. Great are you Lord ~ all sons & daughters
3. Love ran red ~ Chris Tomlin
2. Holy Spirit ~ Francesca Batastelli/ Kari jobe
1. How can it Be? ~ Lauren Daigle

i tried to find some old lists, but i guess i haven’t blogged in a long time!
2010 2009 top songs 2009

My November & December soundtrack


  1. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
  2. God rest ye merry gentleman – BNL
  3. Christmas time is here – Jars
  4. winter – Joshua Radin
  5. chasing cars – snow patrol
  6. A Beautiful Collision ~ David Crowder band
  7. vulnerable – secondhand serenade
  8. Rudolph the red nosed reindeer – Jack Johnson
  9. Gary – MC Lars
  10. grandma got run over by a reindeer
  11. Hark the Herald Angels sing ~ Charlie brown
  12. Holy – watermark
  13. O come O come Emanuel ~ Sufjan stevens
  14. O Holy Night – Avril Lavigne
  15. Happy Christmas – Rebecca St James
  16. Gloria – MWS
  17. The glory of Your Name – watermark
  18. Joy to the world ~ Sufjan Stevens
  19. Emanuel


  1. Winter ~ Joshua Radin
  2. Real world ~ Matchbox 20
  3. maddening shroud ~ frou frou
  4. Let go ~ frou frou
  5. Please forgive me ~ David Gray
  6. breathe in ~ frou frou
  7. Rest ~ Skillet
  8. I saw ~ Matt Nathanson
  9. Today ~Joshua Radin
  10. Must be dreaming ~ frou frou
  11. all your reasons ~ matchbox 20
  12. Here comes the sun ~ the beatles
  13. gravity ~ John Mayer
  14. How far we’ve come ~ Matchbox 20
  15. love the Lord ~ Lincoln Brewster
  16. Rain Down ~ David Crowder band
  17. the glory of it all ~ David Crowder band
  18. O for a thousand tongues to sing – DC Band
  19. You never let go ~ DC band
  20. I can’t hear the music ~ James Blunt