Tuesday, December 31, 2013

As This Year Ends

Well, 2013 is coming to its end tonight. What an awesome year it was for me and for the gaming world. So many incredible games came out this year, along with the latest in home gaming consoles, Microsoft's XBOX One and Sony's PlayStation 4. Though I have yet to get my hands on either one, they do play a part in my near future. I prefer to wait and make sure all the bugs are all worked out. It's just so much easier. Also, all of the awesome games don't even come out until next year anyway. This year I enjoyed many great games, Pokemon X, The Legend of Zelda: Wind Water HD, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Super Mario 3D World, The Last of Us, Beyond: Two Souls, DmC, Diablo 3 for console, The Elder Scrolls Online Beta, Tomb Raider, and so many more that I just can't think of at the moment! This year in gaming was a great one, and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for us gamers and gamerettes. Peace, love & video games, my dears, be safe and have a happy new year!!!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

I just wanna game!

It's been several days now...I've been super duper busy with all of my crafts, my babysitting job, and my website work, I've hardly had a chance to game the way I'd like. Fifteen minute intervals of gaming isn't cutting it, though something is better than nothing! And as of late, it's been two games in particular that I wanna pop in and play. Those two games being Skyrim (I will never grow tired of that game...EVER) and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds. In the past, upon getting a Zelda game, I would game it constantly until I beat it. Now in my life, I don't have the time to endlessly sit and do nothing but game. Hopefully all this hectic-ness will simmer down at some point, and I can dedicate more than 15-30 minutes to my beloved games.
My video games are my way of winding down and relaxing, so in essence, I have not even had time to relax. My breaks happen when I go to bed at night, lol! Hey, but that's the life of a dedicated mother/housewife/journalist/writer/craftmaker...It's not a life for everyone, but I think it's just right for me. Even though I hardly have time for myself or the things that bring me joy, it's worth it to see that I can bring joy to others in all of the works I do. And that in itself, humbles me.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Spreading Yourself Too Thin? Yeah...Me Too

 Do you ever feel like you're spreading yourself too thin? Wish you could be in two or more places at once? Yeah, I know all of those feelings and some. Being a mother of two little girls, one five and the other one, it's quite a chore. I am a stay-at-home mom, and I struggle to keep it that way. I feel it's my job to watch over, teach and take care of my children. Hell, I feel guilty just letting grandma take them for one measly hour. I like staying home with my babies, playing games with them and teaching them everything I know.
 But the time has come, and we need extra income. I work for my websites, and get some pay from there, but it just isn't enough. So to top that off, I make sculptures and jewelry, and I knit and crochet hats and scarfs. Oh, and on top of that, I now babysit four or so times a week. I like making money, and I like being able to do it from the comfort of my home, but it's beginning to feel as if I am doing too much. I even went yesterday, and talked to my apartment manager about possibly cleaning the property daily and doing other odds and ends here and there for yet another job. Granted, this one wouldn't put money in my pocket, but it will decrease my rent, so it works out either way.
 I'm the type of person that won't say no to a good opportunity, even if I have a ton of stuff on my plate already. In the future, I may even possibly be in charge of a couple websites. Awesome sauce, more money for my family and bills, but that results in a stressed and tired Nightingale. But you know what, one must do what they have to do. That's our duty in life. Especially me being a mother, I have that instinct to go and do everything I can to ensure my family is okay financially and so on, even though I know I'm doing too much, and spreading myself way too thin.
 How many of you out there feel this way? You know you're doing way too much, but you keep on at it with a smile on your face even though you're beyond stressed and slowly losing your mind?
 And yes, I know, this is a gamer mommy blog, but sometimes I just want to talk about the day to day struggles that I myself and so many others out there face on the daily. With everything I do, I try so hard to at least game daily. Gaming is my relaxation, my sanctuary, my 'me time'. But there are times when all I get a chance to do it switch on Animal Crossing: New Leaf and catch some fish, then it's off to bed I go here in the real world.
Why can't life be like the video games, and instead of me having all of these jobs to make money, I could just go and cut some patches of grass or break some pots or battle some monsters and BOOM! Money, money everywhere!
Hey...I can dream, right?

Friday, October 11, 2013

Random Rambles & Musings: Positivity Vs. Negativity

This blog won't have a ton of gaming in it. This is basically a "just-for-the-hell-of-it" type blog post. I really want & need to post a lot more, but with my life duties sometimes getting in the way, it's pretty difficult. Who knew I had set my life's difficulty level that high? Haha! 

Anyways... Just some random thoughts. I love my life, I do, but there are always things we can improve upon. For example, I tend to get really stressed out really easily for absolutely no valid reason. Being stressed leads to bouts of depression, & then that in turn leads to me over-thinking everything, & revisiting things of my past that are still pretty painful to look back on. I am learning to change all of that. Life is too short to be worried all the time. Everything happens for a reason, & in the end, it'll all work out how the Universe has so planned. I'm taking baby steps, but I'm getting there. Just keep your focus on the positive.
There are so many people nowadays that pity themselves too much. They in turn make their lives worse unknowingly. If they could just drop the b.s., & just be thankful they are alive & breathing, all would get better for them. If you put out negativity, than you shall receive negativity. Put out positivity, receive positivity in return. That's just how it works guys & gals. Seriously, think about it, uncloud your mind, open up and REALLY think about it. When you think negative thoughts, those will only lead to more negative thoughts. Same with positive thoughts. Plain & simple.

Another thing, positvity & negativity are contagious. If you're negative towards someone, or you act negatively in front of someone, they will react negatively as well. It's a vicious cycle, & I honestly think that's why this world we live in is so cruel & cold nowadays. I'm not a psychologist or therapist or anything of the sort, though I have played this part to many a friend & family member over the years. I am just thinking logically. 

Find the joys in the little things in life...make yourself happy. Life is what you make it to be. You want a good life, go out & make it so! You want happiness? Well, dammit, go out & find it! Sitting in a darkened room won't help you find a damn thing, trust me, I speak from experience. I'm not here to tell you what to do, but to let people out there know that you always have a choice in how your life is lived. The only person who can change it though, is you.

I want more happiness in this world, less sadness & depression. Less people thinking they are nothing, thus resorting to suicide as their last resort. It should not be a last resort, nor any resort! Suicide is not an answer. I've had suicidal thoughts in the past, I'm not going to lie. I've had thoughts when things were going bad, I would think "Perhaps if I were gone, everything would be better". No. Nope. Nuh-uh. Don't think that ever. Your death will never be an answer for anything, other than a cowardly way out of a messed-up situation, that could probably be easily fixed if looked at from a different perspective.

In the end, just know you are never alone if you are feeling this way, or have ever felt this way. Know that you can heal yourself, & make your life better. I'm working towards that goal of less worries, less anxiety, less depression...& if I can do it, I'm pretty sure you can do it too. If anyone out there is actually reading this, thank you. & know that if you need someone to help you sort through whatever it is you're going through in order to make your life better, comment below. I'll answer & help in any way I can. Because everybody needs someone to lean on from time to time. :)

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Nostalgia Post: Why I Am Proud to be a Gamer

I’m feeling rather nostalgic today. Just sitting back and thinking about where video games has taken me in life, where it all started, and to where I am now. It’s been quite a journey, I must say.

I remember being a mere child and having my big brother, who was 16 years older than I, hand me his Sega Game Gear for the very first time. It was the first time I ever played Sonic the Hedgehog. I was maybe every bit of seven years old if I was lucky. And I remember that later on, when my big brother went back to the Army from his vacation, he gave me that handheld gaming system. My father thought I was too young for it, and took it away…I remember that being that saddest day ever. A cherished gift from my bubba, something that one day would prove to be a huge impact on my life, taken from me. Fortunately for me, I got it back in a few years.

When I was about eight years old or so, my parents found me a Sega Master System at a yard sale. I had very few games for it, the only ones I remember were two Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego games, some helicopter game that I could never beat, and Alex the Kidd in Shinobi World, the one that was my very favorite.

Later on, my Sega Master System was sold for me to get an NES, a used one of course. My father didn’t think I needed more than one console at a time. Boy, was he ever wrong! Anyways, with that system we got three games with it, The Legend of Zelda, Super Mario Bros. 2, and another I just cannot seem to remember. I spent all of my time on SMB 2 and most of all, The Legend of Zelda. I loved it, it brought me happiness like nothing else in this world could. Later on, I discovered the Super Nintendo through my aunt who got me hooked on The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. I loved it so much, she let me borrow her own console and take it home to play. I just had to have my own. Luckily for me, I was allowed to keep my NES along with the used SNES we found. This was only due to one of the component cables being gone, so one couldn’t work without the other with the way we had it rigged. I had a total of about 40-50 games for each system. I had found games here and there at flea markets and garage sales, and I had grown quite the collection near the end.

My brother bought me an N64 for Christmas along with Super Mario 64, a game that I still love and cherish to this day. I had all three Nintendo systems at the same time, I was one happy panda! And then one day Nintendo released the GameCube. I saw all of these new games releasing for it, and I just had to continue my gaming venture with that system. My father made a deal with me that if he could sell both my NES and my SNES, he would buy me the GameCube. Looking back at it today, I regret selling my beloved systems, but I had to do so for my advancement in this gaming journey of mine. I had several Resident Evil titles for it back then, to this day I own all of them that were ever made for the GameCube, aside from Code Veronica…that one is difficult to come by. My two favorite games for it had to be Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker, and Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Now, I don not have my original GameCube, but I did recently acquire a new one. And yes, I still play the hell outta it!

As of now, I have a Nintendo, Wii U, Wii, GameCube, Sony PS3, Sony PSP Go, and an Xbox 360. I love all of my systems, for they house a multitude of games I love. I do not regret my gaming history. It has made me who I am. I believe by playing puzzle games when I was young has helped to develop problem-solving skills over the years, and has kept my mind working and on it’s toes.

Not only all that, but also in the hardest of times, video games were there to take me away from this world, and place me in theirs for just a brief while, which was enough for me. A lot of people don’t understand when adults are addicted to video games and play them all the time. And also, these same people know not what has happened in said person’s life to make them the gamer they are today. For me, when time’s got hard and depression decided to pay me many visits, I grabbed a controller and played until I couldn’t play anymore. It saved me from possibly doing something stupid. It distracted me from whatever pain I was feeling, and put everything into perspective.

Now that I’m a mother, I don’t hold back my kids from playing video games (age appropriate games, mind you). It feels more gratifying then you could ever know to place a controller in your lil’ one’s hand and have them share in something you cherished as a child. You give a little piece of yourself to them, passing on the happiness that game brought to you, you share with them that light that lit up your darkest of days.

All of this and more is why I am PROUD to be called a gamer. I am now, and I forever will be. And so will my kids <3

Peace, Love & Video Games, all!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Coffee & Video Games

It never seems as though I have enough time in my day to clean, raise children, work, eat, and game... Seriously.
I miss the old days on my non-stop gaming ventures, where I could pop in one of my many Legend of Zelda titles and play endlessly, until my fingers grow numb and I cannot feel the controls and longer! Now when I get a chance to game, I feel torn between a good and much needed nap, or playing a video game. To most mothers out there, their answer would be, "Take the nap, duh"...well, my dear readers...I am not that typical mom. I hold my games very dear, and they are one of the main things that keep me sane. While 'normal' people of the world turn to meds and alcohol to cope with the world around them, I play a video game. Call me immature, or childish if you will, but I believe my methods are a bit healthier than drinking or smoking or popping pills.
Anyways, I digress...
At the moment I have so many games that remain unfinished. I just keep getting games, and playing them all. I like variety, it's hard for me to play the same game over and over...I have to switch off from time to time. The only games that I can literally get lost in, to where 1 hour of playing turns into 5 or 6 hours of gaming are games such as The Sims, Harvest Moon, and Animal Crossing. I love those games. When I want to relax, those are what I play. Those and Skyrim...I adore Skyrim. Just walking throughout the game and taking in the beautiful graphics of the world surrounding me brings me peace.
When I'm raging, upset or angry, I got to fighting games or Resident Evil...What better way to cope with anger than to shoot zombies, or kick another players ass?!
And then there are those days I'm feeling nostalgic, and missing my childhood and everything I loved about it...that being video games. That's when I play all of my old Legend of Zelda games and Mario games. Perhaps I may even bust out some Super Metroid, or Altered Beast!
I love my video games, and I couldn't nor would I ever trade them for anything. I can't quit my games just as I can't quit drinking coffee...Coffee and video games, that is what keeps this mommy sane...coffee and video games.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Animal Crossing: New Leaf, More Addicting Than Drugs!!

Ever since I finally got my hands on Animal crossing: New Leaf for the Nintendo 3DS, I haven't been able to quit...
Animal Crossing for the 3DS was one of those games that I just couldn't wait for it to come out. Unfortunately, funds didn't allow me to get it the day of it's release, June 6th of this year. Finally, on July 1st I was able to pick up this lovely little bundle of joy.
The last AC game that I had played prior to AC:NL was the AC game for the Nintendo GameCube. I cannot begin to tell you how many hours of joy that damned game gave me. I'm a huge fan of games like Harvest Moon and the Sims, so this game was right up my alley.
I have yet to be disappointed with AC:NL. Everyday, something new happens, or someone new moves into my little town. Honestly, the one and only disappointment I've had thus far is the lack of friends to play with on the game and have come visit my towns, and allow me to visit theirs. At the end of this blog I will post my friend code, any of you who wish to play with me, comment you friend code below, and I will add you in a heart-beat! Yay for visitors who may or may not grace my tiny town of UnRealm with their awesomeness!!!
For those of you who have not purchased this game and is still playing around with the idea...
If you are a fan of the franchise, I promise you won't get let down. Play it, tell me what you think! :D
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Thursday, May 23, 2013

I Just Don't Understand Some Parents Nowadays...

 So as a warning, this latest blog post will be a bit of a rant on my part. It has to do with one of my main pet-peeves...keep in mind, I have many. This one in particular deals with parents.
 There was a time back when I worked at the local GameStop, about 5 or so years back. When I took the job I was taught all about game ratings and how they were similar to that of the rating system used for movies. "E" meaning "Everyone", just like "G" in the movie ratings, "T" for "Teen", similar to that of "PG-13" in the movies, and finally "M", meaning "Mature", for no one under the age of 18, same as "R" in the movies. As a GameStop employee, it was my job to keep kids from buying games that were rated outside of their age group. Say a 12 year old wants an M-rated video game, such Grand Theft Auto, I cannot legally sell it to him without a parent or guardian okaying me to sell it to their child. While working there at GameStop, I came across a multitude of people. Most of them children. Some of them had parents who had no idea about the rating system, and thanked me for informing them on it, while others cussed me out for making their child come get them out of their comfy cars just to okay that I sell them a game, regardless of the game's rating. You better believe that for every child that came up wanting a mature rated game, I busted out our nifty little rating paper, showing the different ratings and why they are rated the way they are. It astounded me how many mothers came in and still allowed their child a game, even after I pointed out that the game contained violence, blood, sex, drugs and whatever else that game may have contained. And people wonder what is wrong with today's youth... tsk, tsk, tsk...
 The reason I bring all of this up today is what I witnessed at another GameStop in my town. While standing in line to buy some games, there was a woman in front of us with a young boy who looked to be about 11 if he was lucky. The little boy was talking about the new Call of Duty game to come out this year, Call of Duty: Ghosts, and the employee waiting on them asked if they'd like to reserve it. **Okay, quick break right here: Being that he was a GameStop employee just as I was those years back, he should know about the rating system and KNOW that the new Call of Duty is a MATURE RATED GAME! He should not have even offered it as a reserve to the child, but then again, people nowadays have no moral value whatsoever -_-** The little boy full of excitement exclaimed "Yes!" The mother then okayed it. As I stood there listening and expressing my feelings to my husband about little kids playing those types of games, my husband pointed at the counter where the lady was paying and said, "Well look, she's buying him Grand Theft Auto right now!" I almost lost it. Why would any parent allow their kids to play these games?! I have nothing against these games, just the fact that they ARE NOT FOR CHILDREN. Plain and simple. Back when I worked at GameStop, I wasn't yet a parent as I am now, and even then had strong feelings against children playing M-rated games...Imagine how I am now that I have two kids of my own! Mama-bear instincts assemble!
 But in all seriousness, I grow tired of today's media and news blaming video games for violence. Perhaps if parents ACTUALLY parented and didn't allow their children to play games they shouldn't, perhaps our children wouldn't be as messed up as they are nowadays. It all boils down to parents giving their kids anything and everything they want to keep them outta the parents' hair, regardless of what these things may be. Children are impressionable, playing games with a M-rating is NOT okay, people! They are rated for a reason... I can guarantee you, you will never see either one of my girls playing GTA or COD until they are the right age to play such games. That's me being a parent, and doing whatever I can do possible to protect my children. I suggest other parents do the same.

Rant End...Now I feel a bit better getting that off of my chest. It just irks me how some people can be so careless when it comes to their kids. Well, that's the world nowadays, folks. It can be a sad, sad thing at times.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Adventures of a Gamer-Geek in a Mommy's World

 Since I was a child, I was a gamer. While most 8-9 year olds were playing with Barbie and Ken, I was busy mastering Legend of Zelda and beating the living hell outta Mother Brain on Super Metroid. All my best memories growing up, sadly, are revolved around my gaming. It defined me, and made me who I am today. Quite a few years later, and now I'm the proud mommy of two very young lil' girls. This gamer geek misses her gaming time!

 I remember back in the day, pulling all nighters just because I didn't want to turn off Ocarina of Time. Now, I have a bedtime. Endless hours of gaming? Well, my hours of gaming are endless, so to speak...But most of that game's time is spend on pause due to me being super-mommy and feeding, bathing and raising two precious babies. And in no way am I complaining...I love my daughters more than any game. I just miss the feeling of getting lost in another world, putting yourself in a universe unlike anything you could ever imagine. But I get my chances from time to time...such as the girls' nap times, or after they've gone to bed, or that rare case when they're actually enjoying each others' company and playing together. Fact is, you can still be the greatest mommy ever, and still keep up with your gamer geek status. I'd go crazy if it weren't for my games. While some moms think they need to get away from their kids and go out drinking and dancing, that's all fine and dandy FOR THOSE MOTHERS. As for me, I'm much too happy to sit back with good music, and a great game in immerse myself in. Sit and play, relax, and drift away into a new world that has been waiting to welcome me with open arms ever since I left GameStop after my purchase.

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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

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Monday, February 11, 2013

Nostalgia Gaming

Earlier I was playing around on my new desktop computer to see what this baby was capable of, when I came across something incredible—Websites to play old school GameBoy games & NES games!!! Gameboy games: www.playr.org & the NES games: www.NESForever.com OMG! I could hardly contain my excitement. I went right into searching for games I cherished as a child…the first few being all the Legend of Zelda games for the GameBoy…I found Oracle of Ages, Oracle of Seasons, & Link’s Awakening. Soon after I started on NESForever.com…I was determined to find a game I played as a child and never got to complete. The name of the game is Crystalis…An RPG, in the realms of Final Fantasy meets Legend of Zelda, the old-school ones of course. And BAM! There it was… I was so happy to have found this game after so many years. I kid you not, I had tears in my eyes!!! Seriously! That game meant a lot to me as a child, and playing it…well, just took me to a happier plane of existence. Like to play games online? Love old-school Nintendo games? I strongly recommend these websites to you…I now am in search of one similar to these, but for SNES, or Super Nintendo.