Author: stargrace (Page 9 of 323)

People Deserve a Thank You

This week I am so grateful and thankful for the people in my life. I wanted to talk about a few of them and why.

David – who I’ve known since high school. He’s the one who set up the whole transfer of MmoQuests over to NomadicGamersEh – he did it painlessly and didn’t laugh when I asked silly questions. Plus he sped the whole site up and he wrote about what he did over on his own site here. Go give it a read. I’m thankful for people like this who have a skill set that I don’t have and I appreciate the time they put into these sort of projects.

Shai – A newer friend, but one I have already vented to on more than one occasion about life and she’s always there listening. People like this are rare and she makes me want to be a better person even though I’ve butchered her name a billion times on stream.

Speaking of streaming – Scopique and Girlvsmmo have been my personal cheerleaders ever since I got it into my head that I wanted affiliate on Twitch. They helped motivate me, inspire me, and were always there with a RT when I went live, and watching when they could. Advice on layouts, streaming gear, and everything in between – these are the folks I go to, and I’m proud to call them ‘my people’.

Ranni – This lady is one of the strongest people I’ve ever met. When life’s tough (and it does get tough) she’s still there and she keeps it real. She keeps me grounded, her stories are hilarious and honest. She probably doesn’t realize just how much I admire her, and may even find it a bit creepy (lol). Still, fantastic person.

Iz & Bex – We’ve all been going through our own personal crap lately but these two ladies are just fantastic. If I need to quickly vent about family, they are both there. We have our quiet moments but I still know I can go to either of them (or both) when I need to.

Neil – Lover of Christmas and purveyor of  Tinkerbell pictures, when things are crummy he still manages to find a good side. He’s one of those silent types that I’ve known for many years now (and helped introduce me to Wurm Online) and I just can’t thank enough for being around.

Anyway, I just wanted to put my thanks out there. There are many more people I’m thankful for, but today these folks are at the top of my list and they certainly deserve to hear it.

Back to gaming!

Pardon My Dust – Rebranding!

You may have noticed that the address to my website has changed! That’s right, after 11 years and a lot of humming and hawing back and forth, I have decided that I have outgrown the “MmoQuests” portion of my blog, and I am rebranding! It’s pretty exciting.

What does this mean? 

For now, when you go to you’ll be redirected here, to Same blog, same posts, different name.

Why this name? 

10 years ago I created and I had paid for a few different URLs for it but because that was a long time ago (and I had no idea what I was doing) I didn’t have the money to keep them running. The nomadic has always applied to me, and even more so these past few years. I also wanted a name that I could expand to include my family. We’re all gamers, and as my little one grows up I’d like to get him involved too (if he wants to, of course). My husband has ideas of running tabletop games, and I wanted a space and a brand name we all feel comfortable posting under. We’re Canadian, so the “eh” portion of things just fit.

What’s next? 

Obviously it will take me a bit to get truly settled. I have to change links on my profiles (I’m staying Stargrace, nothing changing there) I need a new logo (I am woefully inept at designing them even though I know what I would like, the one that’s up is a temporary botch of the one Belghast designed for me), and I need an avatar (or three) designed. I am hiring people for all of this, and that takes time, too. In the meanwhile, if you have mmoquests linked anywhere you might want to update it to the new site. I have big plans(tm) eventually(tm) soon(tm) but for now we’re taking baby steps.

For those who have been reading my blog for so many years – thank you. I hope you’ll continue to read my posts as time goes on, and I hope you’re as excited as I am about the next chapter.

Gaming Together When You Can’t Be Together


I remember when Yahoo games used to be the way that me and friends would game together. I used to play scrabble and other board games online for hours at a time. There was a chat room and tournaments that I never paid attention to and most of the games were private, but we had a lot of fun.

When my husband went off to depot I installed Tabletop Simulator and sent him with the ancient laptop we have. We played it together when we were both at home and I was on baby duty, and I knew it would be a great way for us to be able to game together with our very limited amount of time. One of my favourite games to play which I’ve discussed before, is Pass the Pigs, so last week we set up a game and tested out his wifi connection.

The lag on his end was pretty bad but thankfully these types of games don’t require a whole lot of deftness. We used the chat room to talk and had a good time throwing the two little plastic pigs around. I won, but it didn’t really matter.

I downloaded other games like Cards against Humanity, and some favourite board games like the game of life, chess, and a handful of card games. Being able to game together a bit even with the distance gave me a little piece of normal for the evening, and reestablished our connection when most days are so busy we don’t get to say more than 15 words to one another.

I love the changes in tech and gaming that have happened over the years, and this is just one reason why.

How Streaming Helped my Mental Health

I haven’t been streaming for that long, but honestly it couldn’t have started at a better time in my life. Sure, I have a brand new baby boy, my husband is away at depot for 6 months, and I can barely form a single complete thought let alone carry on an adult conversation – but streaming has been one of the best things I could have done.

Why? Because it’s something I’m doing for me.

Four times a week, for an hour each time, I stream video games. I’m on a RimWorld stint lately because it’s pretty easy to play with a toddler in my lap or if I have to randomly AFK. I try my best to stick with a schedule which is currently 14:30-15:30 mon-tue-thur-fri. My streams are not long, and I’m not incredibly popular but I do have an absolute blast every time and I am incredibly thankful to those people who stop in, even just to say hello. At the end of my streams I have the biggest smile on my face and it’s because of each and every single person who has made an effort to be there for me. I really can’t express just how much this has helped me.

When I first started streaming I was in a pretty dark place. I was suffering from Postpartum, and I was very lonely with my husband gone. I tried streaming at night when logically I had more “free” time, but it didn’t work out because I’m on duty 24/7. I wanted to remind myself that I was MORE than just a mother. That I was an actual human being, with interests, friends, and passions. One of those passions is video games and even more than that one of those passions is other people and interacting with them to the best of my introverted capabilities. So I stream.

I feel really good when I stream. I love sharing what’s going on in my small home, I am proud that I’m able to remain calm and collected when something happens either in game or out. I feel like I’m able to transition between watching my llama bean and interact with my stream audience at the same time. I love having discussions with them, I love sharing my enjoying of whatever game I happen to be playing. I love that my little guy babbles into the microphone and shares his thoughts, too.

For that one hour I am something more than just a milk supplying caregiver. Don’t get me wrong, I adore my son, I love my family and I am incredibly blessed to have all of this in my life and I realize that, but you can get yourself caught up in a particular headspace where you’re not feeling very appreciated – and streaming makes me feel appreciated.

So even though I don’t have a lot of spare time, the streams are hectic, and some days I wonder why I’m bothering, I’m really glad to be streaming.

If you haven’t checked out one of my streams yet, please do! You can find me as Stargrace over on twitch and I upload my videos to YouTube after each one. If you happen to be a streamer let me know, I try my best to grow our community and catch other streamers when I can. I realize we should all be supportive of one another, and it really is a lovely community.

A Little Anime

Sometimes at the end of the day when I have two hours to myself I don’t actually feel like doing any gaming, or I just can’t narrow down what it is I want to do, so I’ll settle into my comfortable rocking chair with my knitting and watch some anime. I’m not a fan of the really heavy stuff or anything that’s too violent, or horror – but there’s so many other shows out there that I never lack for things to watch.

My most recent anime has been Fruits Basket. This is probably going to quickly become one of my top 5 anime, it’s adorable and there are so many quirky moments. It’s also got a lot of sadness within the show, and it’s pretty easy to relate to parts of it. It was recommended to me by a good friend, so it’s not really a surprise that I’m enjoying it this much. I highly suggest checking it out if you’ve never heard of it before.

Have an anime suggestion? What are you watching lately? Feel free to leave a comment and let me know below.

Sunday Meal Prep

I know it’s Monday now but yesterday was one of those crazy Sunday’s where you just don’t have enough time to get everything you want done. I did complete all the meal prep stuff I wanted to though (sort of) so that was nice. This week I’m having deconstructed chicken gyro with brown rice and homemade tzatziki sauce for lunch, and I’m having homemade chili with dinner rolls for supper. I also made apple crisp and put it at the bottom of some mason jars then filled the jars with homemade yogurt for breakfast. Unfortunately the instant pot was taken up making yogurt for most of the day, so my chili never finished cooking (I use dehydrated beans, they’re cheaper and just as tasty) so that will be on the block for today.

I don’t really have recipes to share because these are all comfort foods that I tend to just wing, but the dinner rolls pictured above are delicious and super easy to make, so I’ll share what I do.

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 2 tablespoons of white sugar
  • 1 package of quick acting yeast
  • 1/2 cup of warm water
  • 2 tablespoons of margarine or butter
  • 1/4 cup of milk
  • pinch of salt

Take 3/4 a cup of flour, mix in the sugar and yeast. In a separate bowl,  combine the warm water, milk, butter, and salt. Add the flour mixture that has the yeast, combine (it will be REALLY wet). Add the remaining flour until it’s not so wet, knead for about 10 minutes, add more flour if it’s still wet. Put it in a covered bowl in a draft free place until it has doubled in size (about an hour). Spray or grease a muffin tin. Divide the ball of dough into 12 portions, put each ball in the muffin tin. Cover loosely with a dish towel and let sit until those double in size (another 30 minutes). Put in the oven at 365F for 20 minutes. They should be a golden brown and when you tap the bottom they should sound hollow.

Not too exciting, but they taste delicious and go well with chili.

Meal prep has been the biggest reason I’ve lost 53lbs this year. I’ve got healthy home cooked meals already portioned out for the entire week, and while Sunday might be a long day because that’s when I do all my cooking, come Monday I’m very grateful. There’s no binge eating, there’s no eating poorly because I don’t feel like cooking, it’s all right there. If I want a little treat I don’t deny myself, but my meals are typically filling enough that I don’t spend much time eating anything else. I also ensure that whatever I do eat is something I have made myself (not processed or fast food). I haven’t started doing a lot of exercising yet (aside from taking care of my son, going for walks, that sort of stuff) but I hope to start doing that once I have a bit more free time. For now I’m happy with my progress.

Finding Scarecrow Pepe

I had a really hard time finding Pepe for some reason. On my priest that used to be horde but transferred to Alliance he was no where to be found – so I relogged to an alt and there he was, on top of a grave. Cutest little fluff ball (as always). I had not gotten the achievement for finding him before, so it was nice to tick that off.

Plus how cute does he look perched up there!

I’ve been slowly going through the Halloween events in WoW. I’ve done them before, but it’s fun and there’s a few things I haven’t collected yet (pets, mostly). I already have the headless horseman mount from a few years back, one of the few mounts I’ve ever actually been able to collect. There are lots that I’ve been trying to get for years now. Aside from that, gaming has been nice and quiet – and relaxing, exactly what I’ve needed.

Happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

The Result Of Squirt Day

I have been neglecting my pet collection this expansion pretty severely, I haven’t even collected all of the overworld ones yet let alone any of the special ones. That being said, I did want to take advantage of “squirt day” because it fell on pet battle week. Squirt is an NPC you can find in your garrison, and leveling against her is really easy once you have a set team. I used the Enchanted Broom and a second pet, along with a carry pet. I managed to get about 25 pets from level 1 to 25 with just the handful of games I played. I would have done more, but, well, life interrupted (as it always does). Still, I’m happy with the progress. My collection isn’t that great, but I do have three pets that comes from the WoW card game, and I know if I just keep chipping away at leveling and collecting I’ll do even better.

Did you level up any pets during pet battle week? How’s your own collection doing? Let me know in comments!


What To Do With Left Over Pickle Juice

I love things pickled. One of my favourite things to eat pickled (besides, you know, pickles) is pickled eggs but they’re quite pricey. A small jar will typically run about $15 (Canadian). Turns out they’re really easy to make. I had an empty jar of extra garlic pickles (kept the brine) and some eggs and some vinegar.

That’s pretty much all you need, or you can make your own brine from scratch. I boiled the brine along with the extra vinegar, and added some extra spices for a bit of heat. I cooked the eggs in my instant pot (no fuss and they’re done in 5 minutes) peeled them, and put them into the pickle jar. I sealed the jar, let it sit out until it cooled down, and popped it into the fridge for a few days.

Yesterday was the first day I opened it up to see how they came out.


The flavour is decidedly tart – but not so tart that it makes your mouth pucker, and not in an uncomfortable way. Sometimes you get such a heavy vinegar taste that it makes the food obnoxious to eat, but not in this case. All it cost was the $2.99 carton of eggs, and they’ll last in the fridge for a very long time.

So before you go tossing out that pickle juice – try some pickled eggs (or carrots). Yum.

We’re All Friends Here

People die and it sucks.

I’m 36 at the time of this post, and that’s quite young, but I’m no stranger to friends my own age passing away. 2 year ago my best friend from high school died in the middle of the night unexpectedly. I’ve written here about Jean, a friend from EQ2 who died from suicide.  Over the years people I’ve known, people I’ve loved, have passed on. It doesn’t get any easier to deal with and it doesn’t get any less awkward to talk about but I wanted to talk about it today anyway because it’s one of those things that’s important to me.

It’s important that my friends know how much they mean to me. Even those I have never met in person. On twitter, on facebook, on discord, on G+, any place we may have interacted, I truly do care. I may not always get a lot of time to show it, and you may not even think I know who you are, but if we’ve interacted, chances are I do. I do know who you are. I spent a lot of time quietly observing the happenings from a distance. If you need something I’ll be there to the best of my abilities.

This post is spurred on by learning that Zach Best passed away a few days ago. I didn’t know him personally. I only knew him through his writing as Ravious over at Kill Ten Rats.

Sypster over at BioBreak has a post about it too and how he met Zach back in 2011 at a blogger breakfast, something I have always wanted to do but as of yet have not.

It reminds me again that life is fragile. That we need to embrace the happiness we have. That we need to show people every single day that we care, that they’re important, that their life matters to us.

Just some thoughts this morning.

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