Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Star Wars: The Old Republic

You had to know it was coming. Seriously. But here it is! One week after release, I have totaled 32 levels across 2 characters, one a Bounty Hunter, the other a Jedi Consular. So how is it going?

I might just be more addicted to this game than to any other video game. Yeah.

I loved World of Warcraft, even through a little bit of Cataclysm and all the changes that brought. The changes there are too great now and the game has lost quite a bit of its magic. Numbers started getting too high, daily quests started taking up too much time, and there wasn't a lot to do outside of dailies apart from grinding out materials for yourself and your guild. Granted, some of the new stuff was awesome, like the guild perks and races and all of the changes that Deathwing wrought on the surface, and the new dungeons were fun, too. None of those even start to catch up to the rep/mats/money grindfest that the game had become, though. And what are they doing to fix it? Kung Fu Panda. 'Nuff said.

So how is Star Wars: The Old Republic any different? I don't think it will be once I hit the level cap. The way classes play is a lot like WoW to the point that Josh still uses terms like "Taunt" and other tank-ish words while playing his Jedi Knight. The big differences are these:
  • Almost every class can do every roll depending on the talent tree chosen.
    • Only a couple of classes on each side can't do Damage, Tank, and Heal.
  • Quests are a lot more interactive.
    • Talking to your quest givers, you can pick the nice answer or the ass-hole answer, and enough of either will change your appearance and what kind of gear you can use.
  • Your class has its own quest line!
    • When you start out, you have a mentor who guides you through the game. They aren't always beside you, but you report back to them every so often (unless they fall ill or die).
  • Everyone has a "Pet."
    • Pets are called Companions (no, not like Inara) and they fight alongside you, do your crafting, and go on missions for you. Your choices during the quests determines how much your companion likes you, and the more they like you the better they are. You are also responsible for gearing your companion
  • Everyone has a starship.
    • Somewhere around level 17 every character will get their own starship to fly around in outer space. It costs credits to do so, but not a lot. You also get your second companion here. Much like your companion, you are responsible for "gearing" your ship with modifications that can be bought in space stations. In addition to all of these wonderful goodies, there are escort quests you can do in your starship!
 Do I need to tell you how much I love this game or can you guess? On my Consular, Azarshetai, I am very attached to my Master, Yuon Par. As soon as I was declared a full Jedi, she collapsed and has been ill ever since. I'd do almost anything to save her! Maelri, my bounty hunter, is growing increasingly fond of her companion, Maco, who lost the only father figure she ever knew not too long ago. Maco is now on the hunt for her real parents, and Maelri wants to help her there.

Well, I'm off. Need to scrounge something up for dinner.


Thursday, December 15, 2011

From the Kitchen: Spring Cove Pancake

Original recipe from Alli at One Pearl Button
My grandmother used to live by a cove on Lake Hudson (in Oklahoma) called Spring Cove. I would go up there for a week or two out of each summer and play Chicken Foot with her and fish with my Papa and we'd go shopping and visit other family and I'd grow as a person for just being in that beautiful place. The time there was as smooth as vanilla and my memories are as sweet as sugar. For those reasons, I've named this modified Cape Cod pancake and renamed it the Spring Cove pancake.

What you'll need:
1 Tablespoon butter
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup flour
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

What you'll do:
Preheat the oven to 350*F. In a cast iron skillet, melt the butter. In a bowl, mix together the eggs, milk, flour, sugar, and vanilla until they aren't lumpy anymore. Pour the batter over the butter and bake the whole thing for 20 minutes. Serve with your favorite pancake toppings.

I eat mine plain because they're sweet enough for me without syrup or jelly, and peanut butter doesn't really fit. Next time I go see my grandparents, I'm going to make this for them. They no longer live by the lake, but they're in the same town I grew up in now, and I'll see them in a week or so.

This is me, my little sister, and Gumby in the middle.

In other news:
Personal information taken out due to Blog changes 7/2013


Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas Dress, Circle Skirt, and Cape

So, no picnic dress yet. I still have to finish that, and in order to finish that I have to finish Christmas presents. But... I have my most recent 4 projects in photo form! And without any further ado, here they are:

This is a full circle skirt I made out of some old polyester double-knit that my mom's friend gave to me. It started as a way to add some color to my Sunday wardrobe since said wardrobe is full of black, white, and brown.

The next image is another attempt to add some color to my wardrobe. It also came about as practice for another dress I want to make. Made of homespun cotton, this plaid dress was probably more of a challenge than the lace dress. The Christmas Dress was my first foray into the world of plaids. Of course, I couldn't help modifying it. The black band is a strip of bias tape that I added for an accent.
So we're moving from brown, black, and white
to brown, black, white, and red...
It's SUPER-PLAID! Flowing from red to red plaid to purple plaid, we have my new source of warmth for the spring and fall seasons. This whole project just sort of cobbled itself together. I was originally going to make it out of the red plaid above, but while at Hobby Lobby one day... Well, it was on sale! How could I resist? Three dollars a yard for the soft, warm purply-ness... The lining is some sort of satin stuff that I found at a church sale. It's amazing, too. And, as with the plaid dress, I had to modify. The original pattern called for thicker fabric, a ton of bias tape, and no lining. I nixed the tape, added a lining, and made the whole thing a little more light.

And that's all in the way of clothing. I still have to finish a vest for a friend, my nightgown (that lacks only embroidery and ties in the back), and the ever-incomplete picnic dress. But wait! Don't run away just yet. I still have to show you my grandmother's Christmas present!
It's still a work in progress, though I have four more rows woven and pinned and ready to sew than what you see here. I found this wonderful tutorial over at The Moda Bake Shop, and since I had the jelly roll, I couldn't resist. I know Gumby will love it. How do I know this? I know this because I love it and I don't want to give it up!

That's all for today. Soon I shall have ornaments to show off and a completed rug and maybe even some recipes up. For now, I need to clean my kitchen and figure out something for dinner and get up enough courage to mess with my glue so I can make my sister's Christmas present.

Until next time!


P.S. I now have a Pinterest account. When I get more pins, I'll throw up a link and you can come check it out.

Friday, December 2, 2011

From the Kitchen: Ham Fettuccine

Thanksgiving's not that far behind us and for those of us who had ham in lieu of  turkey, the leftovers are beginning to get a bit old. I found this wonderful, cheap way to re-purpose the slabs of ham from the fridge and it tastes wonderful.

What you'll need:
12 oz uncooked fettuccine noodles*
1/4 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 T butter
3 c cooked, cubed ham
1 1/2 t oregano
1 1/2 t basil
1 1/2 t parsley
1/2 t cayenne
1 c meatless spaghetti sauce**
3/4 c heavy whipping cream

What to do:
Cook and drain the noodles according to package directions. While waiting for that, in a large skillet, saute the onion and garlic in butter until they're tender. Add the ham and herbs and stir/cook for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the spaghetti sauce, bring to a boil, and stir/cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in the cream, and toss in the noodles. It doesn't thicken up that much, but the sauce does stick. Serve and enjoy! Makes about 6 servings.

*I had less than 12 oz and snapped my noodles in half. Same amount, but it looked like more.
**We didn't have any pre-made spaghetti sauce (yuck!), so I took a small can of tomato sauce, added enough water to bring it to 1 cup, added some Italian seasonings, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and a dash of paprika. Worked wonderfully!

In other news:
Personal information taken out due to Blog changes 7/2013

That's all for today! I'm out, folks.