I’m aware that I am late to the bandwagon with this one, but the other day Jason and I started playing Minecraft. I used to have a slight superiority complex about not playing this game. It seemed too simplistic with no purpose, just a way to kill a lot of time while staring at painfully low resolution graphics. I’ll admit that I was curious about the game, since such a vast quantity of people are so enamored with it. The PayPal debacle, for one, blew my mind. How could so many people think such a, frankly, stupid game was so fantastic?

So, what the hell. We watched some demo videos and finally downloaded it to try it out.

At first, I was frustrated and disappointed that my predisposition about the game seemed to be accurate. I died on the first night, lost my inventory, and didn’t see how things were going to improve. I called it quits for the time being and figured I’d give it another shot the next day.

Round 2 was much more productive. For one thing, Jason got our Mac Mini working again and set up a server for us to be able to play multiplayer together. Additionally, that morning I had started messing with avatar skins, and by the time we had the server going I’d transformed myself from “Steve” into Princess Zelda. Being able to play cooperatively and with a personalized character renewed my motivation to give the game a second try.

After making it though the night, things started getting more interesting. We found out how to craft more things, built out a house, and after a while I began to see how much detail there really was in those ‘painfully low resolution graphics.’ The world is actually incredibly rich, and once you begin to realize this, you can tell how much attention to detail was put into the creation of the game.

There is still a vast amount I have to learn about the Minecraft world, but the disdain I once had is gone. I am looking forward to continuing the adventure!

Bravo, Notch!


Here are the avatars that I made, inspired by The Twilight Princess :)

MineCraft Link Avatar MineCraft Princess Zelda Avatar

October 27, 2011 | Random Tangents | 1 Comment

Silk Dyed Eggs

I found this tutorial for silk dying eggs two years ago, and have wanted to try it ever since. Last year Easter passed me by, but this year I was determined to have a go at it.

We went to a nearby Goodwill store and picked up five silk ties for $0.95 each, adding to the three of my dad’s that I’d snagged years ago. Instead of dying hard boiled eggs, I wanted to try blown eggs. It seemed like such a waste to do all the work and end up just throwing them out, especially since you wouldn’t even be able to eat them! I blew the first egg without any assistive air-pushing apparatus, and I completely wore out all of my cheek muscles. If I had to do them all this way the project was getting canned, but I managed to find my balloon blower (a little squeezy bulb with a pointy end that only lets air pass through one way) and that worked much better. The next day Jason totally 1-upped me with this genius idea.

With eight eggs hollowed out and eight disassembled ties, we were in business! The only failure was due to one tie which, while having claimed to be silk, was actually polyester. Check out the seven successes below! :)




Check out the full gallery for more photos!

Many thanks to Jason for his lovely photography, Our Best Bites for their awesome tutorial, and also my dad for wearing out some fun ties! :)

April 30, 2011 | Arts & Crafts | 7 Comments

On Giving.

It’s mid March: the time of year when people start asking me what I’d like for my birthday. My go-to answer has typically been that I have enough ‘stuff,’ and what I really need is to somehow end up with less of it. After sharing an empathetic laugh, eventually I’ll come up some ideas for them.

This time around the sun my thoughts on the subject have refined somewhat. With all of the natural disasters in the last few months, particularly the ones in Japan last week, I’ve been feeling much more in tune with how many people there are in the world who legitimately do need things.

Instead of any gifts this year for my birthday, here is what would really mean the most to me: I would like any money that would have been spent on something for me to instead be donated to a relief effort to help people out who really do need aid right now.

Some organizations accepting donations to aid people in need are:

Today I saw a video and some satellite photographs of the destruction in Japan due to the recent earthquake and tsunami. While I knew that the devastation was bad, I had no idea just how vastly I’d underestimated it. Even if you have no idea who I am and just happened to wander onto my blog, I encourage you to contribute what you can to help these people out.

March 14, 2011 | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Embroidery Trial #1

After getting my new sewing machine and while going through my to-do list of projects, I remembered one that I’ve had fabric in a box for… for maybe 6 to 8 years. Eek! It’s been on hold for so long as it requires creating my own pattern, and I haven’t entirely designed said pattern yet. Excited to finally get working on it, I started thinking about the design, and suddenly had an epiphany that some small embroidery motifs would really give it that extra bit of awesome. One small problem- I didn’t know the first thing about embroidery!

I browsed around on Amazon, and ended up picking out two books:

When the books arrived, I pulled out my old embroidery thread stash (left over from masses of elementary school friendship bracelets) and some scrappy muslin, and concocted a color scheme to do a practice piece with. The “Long and Short Stitch” book is great. It has clear and easy to follow illustrations for stitches and techniques, photographs showing examples, four simple practice motifs to get you started, and beautiful patterns using all the techniques that the book teaches.

My little practice flower ended up much prettier than anticipated, so I added some script, finished off the back and edges, and am sending it over to my grandparents as a gift! :)

I’m sure those of you who know me realize how appropriate it is that buying a fancy new sewing machine would instigate me into learning hand stitching. My cats obviously got their short attention spans from me.

March 7, 2011 | Arts & Crafts | 2 Comments

Chicken Mitts

In July of ’09, we rented Coraline from Netflix, and it was definitely a fun movie. When we first met Coraline’s “Other Mother,” aside her creepy button-eyes, the thing that stuck out to us the most was the pair of funny/cute chicken oven mitts she had in her kitchen. Jason thought they were great, and the gears in my head instantly started turning: I could make those!

'Coraline' Chicken Mitt Other Mother Other Mother's Kitchen

I decided these would be an awesome home-made Christmas present, and I would sneak over to my Mom’s place to mooch her sewing machine and work on them now and then. Nearing my December deadline, I realized that if I hurried up a ton I could probably finish them in time, but in doing so I would be forced to sacrifice some major quality — something I couldn’t bring myself to resort to. Christmas came and went, and the chicken-mitts sat in limbo for much longer than they should have. But last November, when I finally got my own sewing machine, the project was able to resurface! I just finished the tail end of them this morning and they’re all ready to go. Merry Christmas 2009 Jason! Sorry they’re so super late!! :)

Chicken Mitts
Chicken Face! Bok bok bok title=

February 13, 2011 | Arts & Crafts | 3 Comments