A Lack of Creativity

I finished my cardigan just before the new year, and I absolutely love how it turned out. I wish I had filled 2022 with all sorts of knitting projects, but between our big move, the kids, buying our first house, etc. I just couldn’t fit that much in.

I’d like to make 2023 a more creative year, but finding the spoons to get everything/anything done has been difficult. I had grand goals of completing one knitting project a month, but I haven’t even really started on anything. I also wanted to do 52 digital drawings, but I’ve met up with some sort of artistic block where that is concerned.

For now, I’m at least keeping up with my bulletjournal. It’s a bit of creativity, and an attempt to organize my life. I can only hope that I find my muse before too long and I’m able to continue.

A Dingo ate my (Dwarf) Baby

My Dwarf Fortress game has been going pretty well. I think I’m approaching my 3rd year at this location, and I have 58 Dwarves – well, now I have 57. Some dingo creatures moved in and they ended up slaughtering my Dwarf children. Whewps.

Before that though everything was going pretty well. I’ve had a few dwarves taken over by a Fae mode, and one even created a really fancy wooden mug worth $18,000! Of course shortly after a baron moved in and he demanded that he have the best of the best, so I made him a very fancy bedroom, office, dining area, and tomb.

He then promptly put a ban on exporting leggings. What have the leggings ever done to you! The mayor also has a ban on exports, in his case it’s short swords. So for now at least, we won’t be selling those items. I have no idea what the point of an export ban is except to create frustration for you. I don’t know what happens if we don’t abide by it, either.

I was disappointed by the dwarf who required SEVEN items for his mysterious creation, only to fabricate a spear that was worth a measly $5400. With such a high item requirement I was certain it was going to be something very impressive.

Still, it looks good on display at least.

As always, happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

Resolutions (Goals) for 2023

Another year is almost done, and I’ve come up with a new list of things I want to work on for the next year. I don’t really consider these resolutions per say, everyone wants to be healthier and work on certain aspects of themselves, but my resolutions tend to be more like goals I schedule so that I actually make time for them. Last year I wanted to do more art, and I think I succeeded with that goal quite nicely. I didn’t hit the 52 pieces that I had in mind, but I came pretty close. Here’s my list for 2023.

  1. Learn Piano. For now I’ve got a small keyboard, I think it has 62 keys or something like that. It’s not great, but I plan on starting with it, and if I improve and get better and still enjoy it, at the end of the year I’d like to see about getting a full sized keyboard. Pricing them out the ‘good’ ones cost about $500-700 (and they go up from there) so it’s something I’d have to save / work towards and know for sure it’s an interest I want to pursue. In the meantime, the kids keyboard will do. I’m starting with a book called Adult Piano Adventures which is Faber, and highly recommended. I’m going to be aiming towards piano twice a week, two hours each time.
  2. Continue with my art. I did really great this year with my digital art, and I want to keep the momentum going. I’m so pleased with my progress. I plan on aiming on once a week for this one, which is the same amount of time I dedicated towards it this year. Some weeks I couldn’t (ipad broke, we moved across the country, I had an MS relapse, etc) but that’s the goal.
  3. Learn ASL. I’m not sure I can actually physically do this one due to my MS, but it has been a long time goal that I want to finally get around to. I plan on working on this goal once a week but it will really depend on how I’m feeling. A lot of the time my fingers and hands simply don’t want to work properly, or they’re in too much pain to work properly.

That’s it, my list of goals for 2023. There’s so much more I could add to that list, but I wanted this to be obtainable and realistic. That doesn’t mean I won’t do other things, I have plans on continuing with my ‘daily creative’ (except making it weekly, instead of daily), knitting, spinning, and of course my book goals. I want to be better about my blog (all of my blogs, actually) and update my book review site. These are little goals though that don’t really require a long term commitment so to speak.

I hope 2023 is a wonderful year, for everyone. We’ve had such a rough go of things for so long that I just want people to be able to relax a little bit, and not be in constant fight & flight mode. We’ll see how that works out.

Happy Holidays, everyone. See you in 2023.

An Early Year in Review

It sure has been a very full year – though my blog doesn’t exactly demonstrate that. I’m hoping for 2023 I’ll get back into the swing of posting more frequently, but that’s never something I promise or count on. This year it didn’t feel like I accomplished very much but then I remembered we drove across Canada and moved from the far North to the Atlantic Coast as a family of four, and we bought our first house, and none of that was small potatoes.

What am I up to these days besides simply trying to get by?

When it comes to video games you will usually find me in World of Warcraft enjoying the Dragonflight expansion (I write about my gold making adventures over on my web site dedicated to that), or in Dwarf Fortress which FINALLY released for steam. It is absolutely everything I hoped it would be, and more. I have dedicated an absurd amount of hours to this game already, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. I would ideally also like to try to fit some Wurm Online in there, but there are only so many hours in the day.

Art! I had set a goal of completing 52 pieces of art this year, and right now I stand at 39 – considering the year we had, I’m OK with that. Next year I hope to challenge myself in the same way, and I hope to blow that challenge out of the water. Unfortunately with AI art and moral issues concerning both DeviantART and ArtStation I have no idea where to post my works any more. I’m contemplating setting up a Patreon, where people could subscribe to see my art process and my works without giant obnoxious watermarks on them. I’d like to get some prints of my pieces made, so I could give them away or maybe even sell them. I haven’t decided on anything yet.

Knitting – I did manage to finally complete my cardigan, but that was all I completed besides some wash cloths I knit before we moved. I also did a lot of spinning on my new Daedalus Starling e-spinner, which I adore. Knitting went into the “I wish I had time” pile, but I still managed to get that big cardigan project done (I am now living in it for the remainder of winter) so I’m pleased. I have to keep reminding myself I cannot do all of the things.

Speaking of all of the things! I made my way through 23 books this year – raising my original goal of 15, twice. I’m two books short, and I think I might still be able to make it.

I had more MS relapses than I care to admit, and homeschooling my 6 year old was both rewarding and exhausting, but overall 2022 has been alright. I’m hoping to settle in for a rewarding 2023. I plan on doing another reading goal, along with my art challenge, and maybe I’ll set something up for knitting so it doesn’t get forgotten about.

I hope everyone had a great year – thank you for reading my posts and keeping me company all this time.

A Little Wurm Online (Halloween)

If you’ve been following this blog at all for the past 15+ years, you realize that I absolutely LOVE Wurm Online (and the steam version, Unlimited) – but I do tend to take long breaks and wander away every now and again. In the fall I tend to wander back, this is when there are so many events going on, every day feels like a holiday. I love it. This year was no different.

I logged in for Halloween events. There’s a few – you can kill aggressive mobs and have a chance at a helmet (I haven’t seen one yet) and if you’re into archaeology at all, you can dig up spooky fragments which can be put together for some unique Halloween items. I did get a skeleton and some skull candles, I was working on a mask but the fragments seem pretty rare. The event does run until November 5th, which is plenty of time to get some serious archaeology under your belt.

Right now I’m playing on both the Northern and Southern islands. I keep hoping one day they’ll merge them, but it has been years now with no change. I have a priest with 100 faith stuck on the Northern islands, and I’d love to be able to move her to my main deed. In the meantime, I’ve actually started up a brand new deed on the Cadence server, very small, costal, along the highway. If the servers ever do merge, I should be able to sail to my old server fairly easily. We’ll just have to see!

As always, happy gaming no matter where you find yourself!

How is it October..

It seems like I just blinked and September passed us by. On the 24th we got hit hard by hurricane Fiona, and it took until October 7th to be restored with power and internet. We had some damage to the house, and lost a bunch of trees – but we’re OK, and that’s what’s important.

In other news, I finally picked up a Steam Deck, and it should be here next week! I’m excited about this, I wanted to be able to use it for my xbox gaming pass along with my steam library. I imagine it will get a good amount of use, but we’ll see. I’m sure I’ll write about it when it shows up (late, since everyone else has already written about it).

I’m still spending the majority of my time playing Black Desert, and World of Warcraft (retail). I’m excited about Dragonflight, and I see that BDO also has an update coming out on October 12th – YAY! I can’t wait to see what they add.

I’ve also gotten a lot of knitting done, and even some reading (I’ll be doing updates on my book blog a bit later). Trying to organize my thoughts has been more of a trial than I thought it would be.

Remember if you’re looking for World of Warcraft posts (specifically centered around making gold) you can check out my other blog: Girlgoblin.ca – and as always, happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself.

Calendars? How about Character Selection, too

Syp recently posted about the awesome in-game calendar that World of Warcraft has, and he wondered why more games didn’t have that exact thing – I agree. It would make planning and looking at events SO MUCH EASIER especially in games like BDO where there are always a billion events at any one time.

Then I thought for a bit and came up with my own “why doesn’t every game have this feature” feature.

The BDO character selection screen. ESPECIALLY if your game has multiple servers. Why can I not see my characters in World of Warcraft until I log in to that server. My memory is horrible, I have no idea which of my characters is where (as noted by the screenshot below).

In BDO you can see a list of your characters, their level, even their inventory, and you can swap servers or swap to those characters. I would love to see this implemented in other games (EQ, looking at you). Even the EQ2 method where everyone is listed at the main UI along with the server under would be a better method, then I could at least visually see where my characters are and potentially what they were up to last. As it is now, I have to keep a spreadsheet on who I have where.

There are some great QoL ideas floating around out there and especially for games that may not have aged well, it would be great to see these old interfaces uplifted and renewed for gamers today.

An Update on Streaming

My return to streaming happened on June 27th, after over three years away (more like 6 years away, since the birth of my son). I have always wanted to stream, but I also have a lot of anxiety and health issues that prevent me from doing it smoothly. I decided to ease into it slowly, my streams are roughly an hour, and I only stream three days a week. They’re at (what I consider to be) an awkward time for others, but the best time for me (8pm EDT, mon/wed/fri). I stream a lot of World of Warcraft since that’s where I find myself playing these days, but on Wednesdays I stream alternative stuff depending on my mood. I’ve done fiber streams, RimWorld, and the latest Disney game.

It’s hard for me to measure growth, because every stream is different. Twitch uses an algorithm that I don’t quite agree with. Personally, I feel like the growth is there. I have a very dedicated small user base that returns each stream and supports me. They are honestly the reason I stream, they interact with me, ask questions, and are just a nice friendly bunch.

I’m streaming to help get past my crippling anxiety. Right now, I don’t use a cam, but eventually I’d like to muster up the confidence to stream with my cam on. I’m just not there yet. Of course I’d be lying if I didn’t mention the financial side of things, but that’s a smaller part. Since I homeschool and am stay at home parent, 99% of my day is filled with children and doing things for others. Streaming is for me. As much as it’s not supposed to, it makes me feel like I am doing something ‘more’.

I’m not sure why I’m making this rambling post except to say – I’m enjoying my time back. I’m pleased with the growth, and I can’t wait to see where I’m at in a year. I hope I can continue with it, I hope I continue to grow. If you’ve never caught my stream before, you can find me on twitch: twitch.com/stargrace – mon/wed/fri at 8pm EDT. Thank you everyone for the support. It is very appreciated.

End of Month Update

Tomorrow is the first of September – where has the month gone?! I’ve managed to complete my Blaugust challenge (one post a day) for the month, and I’m pleased about that. I also managed to continue blogging on my two other sites (GirlGoblin which is a Warcraft gold making blog, and NomadicReader, which is a book review blog). I consider those sites extra credit. In total I made 51 posts between all three blogs. I didn’t get a lot of knitting done as far as doing my DailyCreative, but I did get a lot of spinning done on my new Daedalus spinning wheel. It has been a dream to use so far.

I stopped doing my bulletjournal in favour of just using a notepad in short form and making lists, then crossing off items as I completed them from my list. It’s not as fancy, but I’m more likely to see what is on the list that way. I found that some days I was completely ignoring my bulletjournal, and that was frustrating.

I didn’t do a lot of reading this month either, but I’ve still got some books I’m actively working through, just at a bit of a slower pace than usual for me. I’ve been having a bit of trouble with my depression and anxiety, so I’m trying to be gentle on myself.

I did manage a few art pieces this month, I even streamed some. My hands have been hurting this week so I haven’t been keeping up, but I’m confident that I can manage to get 52 pieces done this year, that is the goal. I think I have 32 at the time of this post.

I’m still gaming – but I’ve settled with being content with Warcraft as my main game of choice, and then a selection of smaller single player / co-op player games from my XBoX One Pass, and Steam. I wrote about how I was feeling FOMO regarding FFXIV, (and also GW2 these days) but I just don’t have the time to keep up with multiple games, and I *am* very happy in WoW. When it comes to streaming, I’m still working on establishing myself, my brand, and my schedule. I’ve almost done a complete schedule this week (mon/wed/fri are my stream days) and I want to continue that. Tonight I’m actually streaming fiber arts which is a change from my regular gaming / Warcraft streams. We’ll see how it goes, I still have to set up the cameras.

In any case, it has been a productive month. I can’t wait to see what September brings. Hopefully some cooler weather, because these heat waves have been difficult, to say the least. Happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

Another Skein of Yarn Completed!

I finished spinning two skeins of merino/nylon blend and now I have a giant bobbin of squishy softness. I can’t wait to set the twist, and then knit something up with this. I’m thinking that I’ll dye it with avocado pits so that it turns a dusky antique rose. This is by far the thinnest and most constant spin I’ve gotten so far. I wish it was a three ply, but since I only have three bobbins, I figured I’d be safe (you need one bobbin to ply onto). Next? I’ll be live streaming making socks on my antique sock knitting machine on Wednesday! It should be exciting.

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