Posted: September 6, 2010 in Uncategorized

I had entered a small little contest, here on wordpress, that was held by a blogger by the name of Kiwidutch.  To put it plain and simple, she is very annoyed when people post in the forums “Read my blog!” and then don’t describe what their blog is about.  I can understand and thought it would be nice to enter her little contest.  The prize was a review of the blog on her own blog, which gets a lot hits it seems, and thus get some hits yourself.

I didn’t win, congrats to the guy who did, but I did get a little mini review. 😀  She said the following:

chibivega in her blog “One of the Guys, An account of a chick’s time as one of the guys and keeping up with life” is an insight into being a Gal in a very non-Girlie pass-time, Computer Gaming. She gets her kicks, punches and shots quite literally out of the computer or TV and will either kick your butt or talk tactics if you wish to take her on.

Kiwi’s Conclusions:  Naturally she has her gentle side too.. and like all good action hero’s and heroines, a sidekick too. Hers is called Grendal and we are all sure he’s a secret Viking in disguise. Being a Chick in the mostly male dominated genre of Gaming probably means that sometimes you have to muscle up to hold your own. Even to someone as Gaming illiterate as me, it’s instantly clear from her posts that she knows her stuff and probably has no problem blasting past much of the opposition. Her WordPress theme suits her blog perfectly. Ka-Bam! she’s good!

Made me happy to get that much!  She has other such reviews for the other participants and a nice big review for the winner, Ramblings From a Bass Fishing Enthusiast.

So yeah. Happy, happy.  In other news, I’m off to the doctor tomorrow to have my ears checked out.  Don’t need another ear infection.


My Own Bucket List

Posted: September 5, 2010 in Life

(I know, I know; I am WAY behind on this but I never bothered with the movie and, well, thought it a little too blah at the time.  Stopping to think about it, though, it doesn’t seem too absurd.  I mean, I like lists and having something written down and staring me in the face would be great.  Besides, this means I can keep this stuff fresh in my mind and, hopefully, begin crossing things off!  This list is in no particular order, and forever updated.)

  1. Visit the Forbidden City
  2. See the Grand Canyon
  3. Return to the Crazy Horse Memorial
  4. Spend no less than 1 month in Japan
  5. Visit the Great Pyramids
  6. See Stonehenge
  7. See the Paris Opera House
  8. See the Notre Dame de Paris
  9. Go through the Louvre
  10. While in the Louvre, find the statue entitled ‘Winged Victory of Samothrace
  11. Witness the Northern Lights
  12. Be a published author
  13. Make an offering to Pele
  14. Visit Salem, Mass.
  15. Visit the French Quarters in New Orleans
  16. Bathe in a stream, no matter how cold the water is
  17. Spend 30 minutes in a Sensory Deprivation Tank
  18. Watch a meteor shower
  19. Stargaze, far from city lights
  20. Visit Delphi
  21. Spend time at the Temple of Apollo(while visiting Delphi)
  22. Return to the redwood forest
  23. Try surfing in Hawai’i
  24. Once more be the proud owner of a Boxer(I love them dogs!)
  25. Build a snowman
  26. Make a snow angle
  27. Have a snow ball fight
  28. Carve a pumpkin and set up for Halloween
  29. Go to Bristol RenFair in my Merrick costume
  30. Learn Japanese
  31. Learn the basics of the Hawai’ian language
  32. Watch a sunset on a beach in Hawai’i
  33. Treat Grendal to REAL shaved ice in Kona, Hawai’i
  34. Be in the audience at the Merry Monarch Festivale
  35. Knit a hat(I have a pattern for one that I soooo want to do)
  36. ?

It seems there is a 50/50 chance that I’ll either be ahead of the game, or way behind it but it seems like I’m behind it more often then not.  Last week, while I got in the last bit of TV I could, I was watching Adult Swim(shush, guilty pleasure that is no longer there) and they made a comment about the music they were playing in the background.  It was something about a Justin Bieber song being slowed down 800% or something.  I didn’t pay much attention to it because, well, I didn’t really pay much attention to the stuff they flashed across the screen anyway.

Well I was looking around and came across a title of an article: Classic Science Fiction Theme Tunes Sound Even Spacier Slowed Down.  My love of classic SciFi and odd sound music compelled me to take a little look-see at what the article was about.  Come to my surprise it made mention to the Justin Bieber song before showing a collection of SciFi songs.  I was honestly surprised and enjoyed the SciFi tunes as well as the Bieber song(slowed down, mind you).  So what do I do?  I follow the links, download the program, and start messing around with the tons of music that I’ve collected over the years. 🙂  Let me tell you this: The Beatles and the music from the Halo series is pretty interesting slowed down!

Just thought I would share that in-between cold recovery and picking out my next tune. 😉

4 Days, 2 Weeks, 3 Days

Posted: September 1, 2010 in Life

Odd title, I know, but it’ll make sense in a moment.

Its been nearly 3 weeks since I’ve washed my hair with shampoo.  It’s going nicely and I must say that it’ll be cheaper than  having to buy shampoo and conditioner so much….especially since Grendal and I both have long, curly hair and mine is thick to boot.  My hair doesn’t seem so nice right now, though.  I’ve been sick with a sinus cold for about 4 days now and I’ve noticed the change in my hair, which is odd.  Someone else doin’ this little hair change mentioned the same thing so it must not be too odd.

The bad thing about being sick right now, besides the fact that my ears are now clogged and its like listening through cotton balls, is the fact that we have no cable. 😐  I am so used to curling up in bed and watching endless TV while moaning about how I want my cold to be over.  We didn’t forget to pay the bills or anything, we decided to toss cable out the window in order to save some money and that’s been out since Monday(3 days).  Honestly a lot of the stuff we watch we do so out of boredom and any of the educational stuff we want to see we can catch online or find a paper on it.  We also have a whole mess of DVDs we need to get through and some files on our computer that we need to watch.  The upside is that we don’t veg out infront of the TV.  The downside is now Grendal and I are playing more video games.  Wait, that isn’t bad actually.  Ha!

I’ve been making dinner for the family for only a week and I hadn’t realized that I’ve already been delegated the cook.  Monday we had take out and last night we had dinner around 830 because, well, no one realized the time and I wasn’t about to cook while hacking and coughing up goop.  😐  Not a very pleasant thing to hear while someone is preparing your dinner.

So while I am nearly over this cold in record time for myself, my ears are clogged.  I have a little vertigo because of it and I have to pay close attention to what’s going on with them.  Last thing I need is another ear infection and a trip to the hospital, or something.  This is what happens when you had chronic ear infections as a child. Blarg.

Ah well.  I need my rest.  Hopefully the cat will leave me alone for a moment, but I doubt it. :p  Oh! And my review for The Signal should be up on Games, Gold, and Glory at some point.  Woo.  Okay, I seriously need to rest.

Well, dinner from two nights ago was something I found online called Marinated Miso Chicken with Pan Sauce. It was yummy but it didn’t look like what it did in the author’s picture.  Then again, I had to do some substitutions and what not. 😐  The one good thing was that Grendal’s father apparently said that if I keep cooking like this, no one will want to eat his food.  That made me feel great but I also felt a little bad…..this is the guy that plays Santa at the family get togethers. D:  But yeah, here be the picture of dinner from two nights ago:

Nothing spectacular.  I was starving and grabbed my camera before diving in, so the presentation isn’t anything special.  Tonight, though, I’m making something called Ganmodoki.  It’s tofu, something that I usually don’t eat but with Grendal’s parents wanting to go vegetarian and eventually vegan I decided to try my hand at tofu meals.  Here’s to hoping it come out okay.

In other news I think my homemade shampoo gave me an allergic reaction of some sort yesterday.  I tried out a new mixture with and I think something in it reacted to my skin.  Oddly enough it didn’t itch and the only way I noticed was because Grendal pointed it out.  Parts of my skin were turning bright red, which made it stand out because I’m a pale little chick, and it looked like I had dried stage blood on me.  I had Grendal take pictures to keep note of it and the marks went away within an hour or so.  I dumped out my newest mixture and made some more, omitting the addition of  rosemary and limiting the amount of powdered cinnamon because those were the newest ingredients and my original ‘recipe’ didn’t have me breaking out.  Besides that my hair is doing great. 🙂  I’m still going through a detox phase and so is Grendal, but he’s not too happy about it. :p  He says he’ll give it another week or so and if things haven’t changed, he’s going back to shampoo.  Me?  I’m stubborn and will try and stick it out a while longer.

On the gaming front things are starting to pick up speed.  The group finally got through the setup of the whole story, in which they got together, tracked down a horn, and then signaled the coming of Ragnarok.  Now they’re tromping off to find a son of Zeus that could over throw the Olympic Pantheon and if all of that goes down alongside Ragnarok, who know what will happen to the mortals.  Yes, the group has disappeared into their first cave and picked up a companion in the form of a wolf cub.  It was a gamble that they’d take it along with them but Grendal’s character took a liking to the pooch and decided to tote it around.  In reality the wolf cub is a juvenile Gold Dragon.  I wasn’t planning on having another dragon companion for the group but Gigs made the comment about this game having another Merrick and I decided to throw in the possibility of another one, albeit one that isn’t just hatching.  I finally have a name for the sucker too: Kalith.  It’s Draconic for courage which fits a Gold Dragon perfectly!

In other gaming news, around Halloween time I’m hoping to take a break so Cantropos can do a little Delta Green game in honor of the spooky holiday! 😀  I love that game and have been itching to play it ever since finding out last Friday was HP Lovecraft’s 120th birthday(or something like that).  Grendal, Dame, and myself are the only ones in the group that have played the game before, besides Cantropos obviously.  Grendal isn’t too fond of the insanity rolls but enjoys the game but Dame just doesn’t like it for some reason.  Gigs and Renny are interested and I think Cantropos would enjoy running the game, especially since he had an idea or two by the end of the night.

Halo Reach stuff is starting flow out, which is making me a happy little gamer.  I’m loving the live action stuff they’re putting out but some other people in the Halo community aren’t too thrilled about it.  Why?  Not enough action and explosions.  Thinking about it I can understand because Halo is an action game.  You run around with all sorts of firearms and destroy the aliens in your path.  Reach, though, is something new.  This is the start of the Human-Covenant war in the series, which means there isn’t much in the way of explosions and outright kick assery(woo, new word).  The first live action thing was pretty much what was happening to different people on Reach the day before the attack happened.  Here’s a copy from youtube:

I don’t think it’s bad.  I mean, people are doing their normal thing which is to be expected.  Everything is hunky dory.  Today Kotaku had a video called ‘Deliver Hope’ up, which is the next live action thing for Halo Reach.  It’s pretty nifty and has the explosions people were hoping for.  My only gripe(big surprise, I have a gripe) is that Kat doesn’t have the mechanical arm like she has in the game.  I can understand not being able to duplicate it, but it just irked me for some odd reason.  Here be the video:

Here is an interesting bit that Kotaku had: “Starting on Aug. 29, the Deliver Hope campaign kicks off for real, with the live-action short hitting a multitude of networks including CBS, NBC, FOX, MTV, Spike TV, Comedy Central, SyFy, ESPN, F/X, TNT, TBS, Discovery Channel, G4, and more.”  It’ll be nice seeing it on TV and hoping there is more to it. 🙂

Last Friday I watched a ViDoc for the game called “A Spartan Will Rise” with my usual Friday crew.  Grendal made a comment along the lines of “Why is Cortana in this game?”  Listening to the voice over, it was Cortana’s voice but it sounded off in some way and I couldn’t place it.  I had my suspicions but didn’t say anything.  In the end, though, it wasn’t Cortana who was speaking but Dr. Halsey!  I pointed out to the guys that the speech patterns were different between Halsey and Cortana, which would make sense since Cortana is an AI and looks and sounds like her maker(Halsey) but is totally different.  🙂  Holy crap, here be the ViDoc:

So yes, all is well and I’m counting down the days until September 14 so I can get my grubby little paws on that freakin’ game!

For the next couple of months I’m going to be the designated dinner maker for Grendal and his parents from Mondays to Thursdays.  This is mainly because Grendal’s father has classes that would keep him out until after ‘dinner time,’ and Grendal’s mother doesn’t really like to cook(or so it seems).  To save money Grendal isn’t taking classes this semester and is hoping to make some products for the family’s business so it can get started.  I’m having to fend off school due to personal issues and I’m looking for a job in a city with some of the crappiest unemployment rates. :\  I am starting to make some handmade jewelry and macrame but I don’t think that’ll cut it.

But yeah, the post’s title…..I love to cook!  When I cook anything I have to make it perfect and I’m so damned critical on myself that it’s nuts, but its also the rare time that I will be boosting my own ego and going about how awesome I am(I only say this to Grendal though).  For a while one of my dreams was to become a chef.  I watch Food Network too much and some of the food shows on the Travel Channel, like Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations(the guy may be a bit of an ass, but he knows what he’s talking about).  For the longest time I would make sure to watch Iron Chef, the original not the American remake, and just sit there in stunned silence.

I can’t really say cooking is in my veins.  My father was a cook at a restaurant and both my parents have cooked for the family, but there was no drive to really explore that avenue.  My younger sister tried her hands and concocting a whole mess of things but it never went too far.  She and I help/ed my mother prepare dinner and, after a point, I was the one cooking for my parents, myself, and my younger sister.  I loved it, especially making cookies and sweets.  The one thing, though, that I wanted to learn to make was sushi.  Its only been within the last 6 years that I’ve started really eating it but my mother has made sushi for years.  I loved the smell of the rice and the sushi vinegar she made(always from scratch).  I enjoyed watching her make it and then that was that, everyone else would eat it.

My fondness for sushi making eventually evolved into a love of Japanese cuisine in general.  Living in the middle the US and about an hour away from Chicago suburbs makes it a little hard to find good Japanese restaurants or even decent Asian stores.  The one, yes one, we have in town is focused more towards Laotian cuisine than general Asian.  So in order to get some good Japanese ingredients Grendal and I have made it a point to go out to Mitsuwa at least once a year.  When we were part of a Japanese Multimedia Club at a local college we would make trips up there with clubmates.  Oddly enough while the other members ransacked the snack aisle, Grendal and I would grab a shopping cart and do some grocery shopping.  We always get some quality ramen to take home and we both have some that we HAVE to buy: Grendal has his Melon flavored drink and I have to get these little sweets filled with red bean paste!

The one thing that I found that I enjoy doing is making bento lunches.  Its a nice way to keep track of what I’m eating and getting a great lunch in too.  I do the same for Grendal and he appreciates it, though it seems his bento box may be a little small.  I stopped doing this for a while but I know I’m about to get into that kick again, more specifically, though, making Japanese style foods.  Its been present in my life for years thanks to my mother and I’ve been keeping up with it ever since I’ve been cooking.  I looked at one of my Japanese cookbooks and felt that need to delve into again.  Sure enough I found myself seeking out some old sites that I visited to get some recipe and bento ideas.  I’m starting to debate about taking pictures of my evening meals and posting them here, along with the recipe but I need to keep track of where these recipes come from! 😮  Some of them are from the internet and others would be things my mother made and I just picked up on.

Ah well.  We’ll see if I decide to do this, so be warned…..tomorrow you may see a picture of food here and hopefully it was yummy.

Starting Something New

Posted: August 18, 2010 in Life
Tags: ,

This may sound odd, but yesterday was the last day (hopefully) that I used shampoo and conditioner.  Before anyone goes, ‘Ew, your hair will look and probably smell like crap’  I’ve looked all this stuff up and found some very useful info as well as a lot of other people doing this.  I’ve talked Grendal into trying this experiment with me, so here’s to hoping our hair doesn’t rebel against us since, well, we both have hair down to the middle of our backs. 😮  I’ll probably follow suit with others and take pictures of my hair as well as Grendal’s to track progress.  Plus it gives me something to do!

Can’t really explain much about it, but here are a few links(though it seems like they mooched the info off each other) that I saw about the whole thing incase anyone still thinks I’m bonkers:

Letters to the Editor- Info: Shampoo Free

A Non-Toxic, Frugal Way To Wash Your Hair Without Buying Shampoo

How To Clean Your Hair Without Shampoo

LiveJournal ‘No-‘Poo’ Community