Weekly Goal Progress Report #11

Switching up the order to keep things fresh

1) 20 Minutes of Games Every Other Day: I think I’ve reached my limit with Lost in Shadow, unfortunately. At first its slow and cautious pace seemed fitting with the mood and the teaching of mechanics, but it’s stretching on for too long. I’m certain there’s some sort of changing moment to be had, but I’m tired and anxious to move on to other games. Maybe I’ll come back to it someday. Meanwhile, Okamiden came and I’ve been playing the crap out of it! I enjoy it very much, and it warrants a post all to itself. More lunchtime Minecraft this week as well.

2) Financial: I did my annual credit report (which you can and should do once a year, here) to make sure my credit card was closed properly, which it was! I found another error on the report, though, so I submitted a dispute and it’s already been cleared and removed from my report. It was a way faster turnaround than what I was expecting!

3) Sew 3 Things. 1 or 3 completed. No updates here.

4) One free thing in LA per month: Starting to think ahead to April. I haven’t run across any events I’m interested in yet, but there are still several free museums I am interested in, so perhaps I’ll check one of those out in April. Ideas include the California Science Center, MOCA, and the Museum of Television and Radio. Sound interesting to anyone?

Weekly Goal Progress Report #10

Switching up the order to keep things fresh

1) Sew 3 things: 1 of 3 complete. Just some mending this week, as I got my set of bobbins. I think that’ll go a long way in encouraging me to sew more, since changing thread when you only have 1 bobbin is a pain. I think I’m getting the hang of the darning foot, but sometimes my thread breaks so I might not have it attached properly. I really wish I knew someone in LA who knows sewing machines inside and out so they could come give me a crash course in these attachments. LA friends? Any tailors or seamstresses?

2) 20 Minutes of Games Every Other Day: More Magicka! I think we’ve just about beaten the adventure mode, but I’m not sure. I’ve also been Minecrafting a bunch lately. The latest updates fixed monster hit detection on multiplayer servers, so the Insomniac server is much safer. Also been playing Shining Force, which I don’t think counts since it’s a game I’ve already played. BUT! My copy of Okamiden should get here soon!

3) One free thing in LA per month: Oh man, the kite festival was amaaaaaaaaazing. There were so many kites in the sky of all shapes and sizes and types! It was beautiful! I particularly liked the dragon kites. The atmosphere on the beach was really nice, too. Everyone was super chill, and maybe your string got tangled on another kite but whatevs, there were a billion kites up there so how could anyone complain! They had a big 25ft wide kite that had a cord so thick that you could see it all the way up to where it attached. My favorite was a teeny tiny butterfly shaped kite that someone was just dragging along behind them on a short string, and it still fluttered up in the air like a pet! So cool. Definitely going again next year.

4) Financial: I updated my annual mileage with my auto insurance company, since I haven’t driven back and forth across the country in a few years, and they sent me a reimbursement check on my insurance payment for the lower mileage. Nice! I wasn’t expecting it to kick in until the next time my premium was due.

Plight of the Pacman Cup

When I was a little girl, my grandma had a pacman drinking glass, this one here. Every day after school, I would walk to my grandma’s house and pour myself a beverage, usually orange juice, and often in this favorite of drinking glasses. I remember peering at the image of the game board on the back, fascinated, wondering where pacman would go next, frustrated at his inefficient pellet collection strategy. Such love for this glass!

One day, in pouring myself some orange juice, perhaps too excited to get to my peering and pondering, I knocked over the pacman glass and broke it. I was devastated! I pleaded with my grandma that we glue it back together, convinced that it could be saved! But no, it had reached its time, and was relinquished to the trashcan. Heartbroken, I moved on with my life.

Fast forward 12 or so years.

I’m working in the theater, living in New England, out shopping for props at the local antique stores, like we do. I was photographing a chest of drawers of some sort, arranging purchase with the shop owner, who was so excited that one of his antiques would appear on the stage (I did not tell him that we would be sawing it in half and beating it with a rasp and hammer. I’m still amused at the relationship between prop shop and antique store, and remain convinced that if they knew half the things we did to their wares, they would never speak to us and would kick us out of their shops.)

Anyway, after taking some measurements and notes, I looked up, and there it was. A pacman glass! Just like my grandma used to have! It was sitting among an arrangement of vintage clutter, easily overlooked by the average passerby. After hopping around in a little dance, I purchased it in a heartbeat, relaying the sentimental story to the shop owner. Once again, pacman glass was in my life!

When I had it at home, I sat down to make an important decision. Would I use this glass for drinking? And chance another accidental knock-over? Or would I use it as a pen holder, a much safer occupation where it could be constantly in my view. I chose the latter, and pacman glass held my pens and sat on my desk through many adventures and moves.

Fast forward 7 more years.

On his nightly play romp, Mr. Davis miscalculates the angle of his leap from dresser to cat tree, and pacman glass falls to the floor, shattering.

I’m contemplating trying to glue it back together.

Book Review: The Ale Boy’s Feast

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review

The Ale Boy’s Feast was a fantastic read in a rich, vivid fantasy setting. It was the last book in a series, but the opening synopsis was thorough enough that I never felt lost, and though I felt like I was missing some of the subtleties of some of the characters’ relationships, it just made me curious and did not frustrate me. That said, I will most definitely go back and read the series from the start, because Jeffrey Overstreet’s wordsmithing is just an absolute joy to read!

The world that the story takes place in is rich and original in terms of fantasy standards, and the conflicts are complex without becoming confusing. It follows where I presume the previous storylines diverted off and eventually brings them all back together: Cal-ravan the young king, Rescue the aptly named ale boy, Krawg the thief-turned-storyteller, the kite-taming sky man, the mage and his dragon, the insidious Seers…The strong characters in this book make a solid foundation for the plot to weave around.

Even though I read the last book first, I am incredibly excited to go hunt down the rest of the series and start over from the beginning. I would highly recommend checking out the sneak-peak on the publisher website to get a taste of the writing style. 5 stars!

Weekly Goal Progress Report #9

1) Financial: It was a tough race, but I’m deciding to go with Lockheed. The main reason is, even though USAA sounds more awesome, there are a few little things I need to be able to do that they can’t, and everyone’s response is that they recommend to also keep a small local bank account in addition. Well, the small local bank account is the one that I’m looking for! So, credit union for now, though USAA definitely sounds super awesome.

2) One free thing in LA per month: Kite Festival is tomorrow! Nick and I also snuck down to the Lantern Festival last Saturday for our Anniversary. Got to see some shadow puppetry and a dragon dance, very cool stuff!

3) 20 Minutes of Games Every Other Day: Finished Stacking. SUCH a delightful game! I would recommend it to anyone with a PS3 or XBox to buy, it is certainly worth it. It’s very low key to get through the whole story, but there are plenty of extra puzzles to solve for the completionists. Also, we’ve been playing Magicka this week, which is fun and hilarious! But it keeps overheating my laptop, which is unfortunate

4) Sew 3 things: 1 of 3 complete. Nothing to report here, though I did order some extra bobbins. Woo.

Weekly Goal Progress Report #8

1) Financial: Bank of America started blocking connections to Mint.com, which annoys me, and I’d always felt bad about having an account with those jerks anyway, so I’m investigating local credit unions to switch my checking account to. So far, Lockheed FCU is in the lead, but I’m still collecting opinions and recommendations.

2) One free thing in LA per month: For March, I’ve settled on the Festival of the Kite! I’ll set up a facebook event like I did for the dragon parade, that seemed to work well enough

3) 20 Minutes of Games Every Other Day: Still playing lots of Lost in Shadow. It remains simple platforming and puzzle solving, but I still have a hunch that something is going to change in an exciting way, so I’m holding out.

4) Sew 3 things: 1 of 3 complete. Today, I experimented with the darning foot to mend a hole in a pair of pants. I’ve never used any of my sewing machine’s attachments before, so it was a bit of an experiment. The hole is mended, though it’s a bit of a patchy hack job. I feel like I have quite a piece of machinery here that I don’t appreciate.