Personal

Why the move is important

So I’ve been dropping in posts that I’m finally moving out of 29 years of living under my dad’s roof. This move is important to me, more important than it would seem just looking at it normally. I mean, being 29 and living at home still was not what I had in mind for my future and the fact that I’m finally moving out is causing all sorts of thoughts and emotions in me that I’ve not had in years.
To really understand why finally moving out on my own is so important to me I guess I need to tell a bit of the story of my life so prepare for a deeply personal post on this one. There are some trigger warnings here including suicide, parental death and (verbal) abuse.

I am an only child. My mom was a stay at home mother and my father worked full time. My mom was everything to me. She was my primary caretaker and my pillar. My dad was the man I saw at dinner and in the weekends. He’d come to stuff like gym competitions and me getting swim diploma’s but he never really interjected himself in my day to day life. My dad always has had a short temper and would get angry about the most ridiculous stuff. Sometimes this anger was aimed at me for requests a normal innocent childs make that would somehow set him off. He has hit me as a child a few times when my mom couldn’t intervene on time. It’s safe to say the bond with my father was bad.

When I was 12 years old my mother suddenly passed away. One day she was there and the next day I came home to find her dead body in my parents’ bedroom. She’d had a blood clot in her lungs and basically died within minutes of this happening. There was nothing anyone could have done but to teenage me this was non-information. My world was shattered. I had lost the most important person in my life and it still leaves deep scars untill this day. This meant I grew up as teenager with a father who I had no emotional connection to. He hadn’t been physically abusing towards me for years but on an emotional level we could not connect. He took time off after my mother died to grieve but I went back to school and got by on my own. I had very little support and a father who didn’t want to talk about what happened and who still had his temper. This often resulted into getting verbally abused over nothing and me developing deep rooted anxieties towards the man. I’ve been told so many times that he’d knock me into the hospital or throw me out into the streets that I just trained myself to zone out when he’d go on one of his rants. He also believed I was a difficult child (I wasn’t) and that all the issues I had were of my own making thus yelling at me almost every day was somehow justified.
When I was 16 I was diagnosed with PTSD and I attended single therapy aswell as family therapy to sort through the copious amount of issues that existed for me and within the relationship with my father. I wish I could say that this helped matters but unfortunately it didn’t. I learned to deal with the fact that I didn’t have a normal family home and tried to focus on getting my own life in order and focus on school and getting into university. Untill this day I still have issues with talking to my dad openly about things. I feel like if I tell him something he dislikes he will immediatly go into a rage so I rather keep things on the down low. I don’t think we will ever have a normal father/daughter relationship and at this point in life I’ve not tried pursuing such a thing for a long time.

When I was 18 my dad’s current partner came into the picture. I had my first real boyfriend at the time and he was spending more and more time with a woman we’ve known for a long time because she lived next to one of my uncles. Everything seemed okay at the start of their relationship. She was nice/normal towards me and I was happy my dad had found someone again because this meant that he’d focus less on me and leave me alone. I have to say that her coming into his life made my life suddenly much easier and I feel like I’ve had a bit of a restored relationship with my dad from that moment on but it’s still not how it should be.

As I’ve found out throughout my life though things never seem to stay on the up and up. My dad’s partner turned out to be a whole world of trouble on her own. She has some social issues which I’m not sure I can explain but it’s made my life miserable at times. Instead of confronting me about stuff she “disliked” me doing she’d badmouth me to my dad behind my back for years. This resulted in him being angry with me and berating me on how to act “normal” towards her on more than one occassion. This went on, and is still going on, for a long time untill I sat down with him and basically told him that I was done being a “good daughter” for her. She’s not my mother. She has not once showed any real interest in me. I’m tired of trying to be the one to build a “relationship” with her when there’s obviously no interest from her side. The badmouthing still happens but I’ve not been addressed by my dad in a long time. And the things that she would badmouth about are of the category “absurd”. She really does make problems bigger than they are and then becomes a dramaqueen about it for no apparent reason.
One of the best examples I can give of this is one that happened in the last year. I have my own equipment for storing food, they’re glass containers with plastic lids that can go into the fridge but also into the oven. I used one of them to make lasagna with. I’ve had these for a while and the stickers of the brand were still on the sides even though they’re half peeled off. I have no issues with this but to her it looked “stupid”. I shrugged and pointed out they were mine and I didn’t care. For some reason my dad chimed in and eventually I told him to just put the damn thing into hot water to help it peel off. Ten minutes later, I had gone up to my room to relax, my dad comes knocking on my door because he needed me to talk to her because she was upset. She was upset because “when I suggest something you never listen to me but you listen to your dad”. First off, she never suggests.. She bitches. Secondly I don’t have to listen to any of your suggestions when it comes to my stuff. Thirdly what the hell is your problem woman. I told her I had no idea why she was upset about this because it’s simply bullshit. My dad sat inbetween and just let it play out. This is the kind of petty drama filled shit that fills her head apparently and I can’t stand it.

I’ve had to deal with it for 10 years now and I’m just not putting any energy into communication on that part anymore. I let her bitch and I just stare off in another direction untill it’s done and then I talk to my dad. It’s so emotionally exhausting to live with these people. A father who rages at every little thing and a woman who thinks I’m somehow out to get her and makes mountains out of molehills. I try to avoid them as much as I can already while I was plotting my escape. Not getting a job untill I was 26 didn’t really help either but now that I’ve had a steady employment for the past three years and I could finally afford to move out I sprung on the chance to do it. It’s going to be such a relief to not have to deal with this stupid stuff every day anymore.

Not having had a stable home since I was 12. Living with a man who has no control on his temper and who lacks a sincere proficiency for empathy, and a woman who has the attitude of a teenager has had more of an impact on me than my mothers’ death could ever have. I’ve gone through PTSD and a secondary anxiety disorder that was diagnosed later in life. And yet nothing has taken it’s toll on my health more than living at home for as long as I have. I could write so many stories of shitty things that happened over the years. Of the verbal abuse, the bullying, the badmouthing to the point where I had an anxiety attack so bad that I fell and couldn’t get up and my dad was still raging at me. I’ve been made to feel less than human, to feel like I had no right to live, that I was a terrible human being and at some point I really believed the world would be better off without me so I tried to take my own life. Which only elicited more rage from my dad instead of the empathy he was supposed to feel towards his teenaged kid. Untill today I still struggle with suicidal thoughts. They may not be plans or actual ideas to take my own life, but if I were to die in my sleep I’d have no issues with it.

I have made leaps and bounds to improve my life. Finishing my Master’s degree, getting a steady job. I have an uncle who I was able to confide in about all the things that happened in our house and his heart broke for me. I’m no longer a broken person although I’m not where I want to be just yet. But moving out of this toxic household and finally starting a life of my own means more to me than anything else in the world. It feels like I can finally release myself from the shackles this house has put on me and be free of it all.
And maybe, just maybe, I can finally start living a normal life.

Homes, hacks, patches and funerals

As you can deduce from the post title I’ve had a very exhausting week. A lot of things happened that are gaming and IRL related and I need to get it all off my chest.

So let’s start with the good!
I had a look at my new apartment on Wednesday. It’s coming really close to being done at this point. My bathroom is as good as ready, all ceilings are ready, and it’s basically putting in the floor heating, floor, kitchen and painting the walls that needs to be done now. They suspect we can move in sometime during April, which is 5 months earlier than the initial date. I’m stoked! I am finally moving out into a neat little apartment and be a complete adult with my own life. Yay me.
I took lots of pictures and got to know some of the neighbours and it was all around good fun. I can’t wait to move there in a few months and I’m already picking out my furniture and making lists of everything I need to buy. I’ll probably do the same thing my coworker did and just take 3 weeks off to move and get settled in.
One of the things I had on my list I can scratch off because to day I picked up my Playstation Pro and traded in my old one. 4k games here I come!

In mentioning the Playstation I come onto my second subject of the post: hacking. More specifically people piggybacking on an existing Playstation Network account. They basically make use of your PSplus subscription and download the games you’ve bought. Apparently this has happened to me sometime during 2016 seeing as in my 5 year PS4 review FIFA 17 suddenly showed up as one of my top 3 most played games… While I don’t own it. After some digging I figured I’d been the victim of the specific type of hack I just described. There’s never been any purchases on my account that weren’t made by me but now with me getting a new Playstation I’ve taken a ton of measurements to make sure my account is freshly protected. I have had 2-step verification for a while but I specifically went into my Sony account and deactivated all devices, changed my PW and set up a new security question. I also took all payment details off the account. If someone tries anything funny now I’ll notice and hopefully this should keep my account safe for the future. It was kind of a scare to realize my account has been used by someone else but luckily nothing malicious every happened so there’s that.

In the realm of gaming I’ve not been able to put that much time into games this week. My warrior is level 68 in FFXIV and slooowly going towards level 70. I’ve been meaning to pick up the second game of Spyro but really couldn’t be arsed to sit down and play. I’m also aware that patch 8.1 is out in World of Warcraft and honestly I’ve not even been interested in logging on and seeing what Blizzard has added for the patch. I will probably poke my head in somewhere around Christmas because I have a week off then and enough time on my hands to play a few more games than just FFXIV and Spyro. Square Enix released the 4.5 patch site for FFXIV so I guess that’s a thing aswell.

Finally some sad news. I’ve been having a few ill family members, some more serious than others. One of them was one of my aunts who has been fighting a lung disease for most of her life. Unfortunately during Friday night she passed away while being surrounded with loved ones. The funeral should be either coming Friday or Saturday. If it’s Friday I probably won’t be able to make it due to work, Dutch time off around funerals is surprisingly strict and will completely depend on your manager when it comes to funerals of non-immediate family. I hope I can make it so I can say goodbye but I’ll guess I will see once the date for the funeral is set.

Warriors and Spyro

Character shot lvl 60 WAR quest

Progress, progress, progress! Hello again!
I’ve been quiet over the past week, I know, so I figured since it’s now Sunday, and I actually have time to sit down and post, I’d give you all an update about what I’ve been busy with throughout the week.

The above screenshot was taking during the cutscene of the level 60 Warrior quest. I will admit I have been less active on FFXIV the past week and the reason will be given below in a few minutes. However I have been slowly chipping away at my Warrior levels and have landed in the 60-70 territory which means I can pick up Beast Tribe dailies again and Hunts. It also means I have been enriched with a ton of new cool abilities, including Deliverance Stance, and that I can finally wear the set of Shire gear which I’ve purchased specifically for the leveling process.
I’ve been enjoying the tanking on Warrior even though I’m not that good at switching stances yet. I know the whole gimmick of Warrior is to get aggro in Defiance stance and then switch to Deliverance and start dishing out a ton of damage yourself in 4 man dungeons. The damage Warrior actually does is quite surreal for a tank and I’m probably going into full Offtank mode when I get level 60 Alliance roulettes or level 60+ trials. It’s just fun, and satisfying, to see those high numbers while swinging an oversized axe around. Luckily for me I’ve not had to do this leveling process alone, I have a few friends who are slowly coming back to FFXIV and I’m bantering with them on Discord as we run our roulettes. All in all I’m quite happy with the progress I’ve been making thus far and I hope to have my Warrior at level 70 by next weekend.

Spyro in Gnasty's loot room

Now onto the real reason I’ve not been playing FFXIV that much.
Last weekend I bought the Spyro Reignited trilogy on a whim. I never had a Playstation myself when I was a kid, my parents bought me a Sega Megadrive (Genesis in the US) that I to this day still adore. However my best friend and her little brother got a modified Playstation as combined birthday gift. I say modified because it had been chipped to be able to play copied game discs meaning that their parents wouldn’t have to pay full price for the games they wanted to play. A lot of my good memories of rainy days come from either playing with her on our attic on the Sega or us playing Playstation games in her brother’s room. This is where I got introduced to Spyro, Crash Bandicoot and Tekken among other games. And although the memories of the original Spyro are kind of vague I knew I wanted to play the HD remakes to see if I could capture that nostalgia and to see if the remakes were any good.

Well I can confidently say that the purchase hasn’t been a waste since I’ve managed to completely finish the first game in the trilogy within a week. According to my save file I’m around 10 hours played after finishing everything there was to do in the game. I’ve beaten the game 120%, the extra 20% being the Gnasty’s Loot Cove level where I took the above picture. I’ve obtained every single Playstation Trophy that was attached to this game, leading to my very first Platinum trophy. Finally I managed to knock out obtaining all the Skill Points and thus unlocking an extra art gallery with a ton of pictures of concept art for the various dragons and other creatures you come across in the first game.

All in all I’ve had a ton of fun playing Spyro. The first game doesn’t have learned skills like the later games do and also have a lot less in the way of guidance the later games do but that makes it even more enjoyable to play. Apparently you can toggle a minimap while playing which, as you can see, I never had on. I wanted to explore all the levels on my own and when push came to shove I’d look up the final thing(s) I missed on Youtube. It was a heavy 90’s nostalgia blast and I’m happy I picked up the games even if it goes against my self-imposed rule of not buying any new games untill I’ve atleast finished some of my existing backlog.

I’ve already started the second game in the trilogy after finishing the first and I hope that I’ll enjoy that one just as much as I did this one but I’ll see once I’m a bit further into the game. So far I’m enjoying myself there aswell, even though the game is a bit more hand-holding than the first one. I already hate having to buy skills with gems though, then again it gives the gems a purpose besides just “collecting”.

As positive as my gaming week has been I’m unfortunately not this happy in real life. Work is being an absolute disaster. I’m in a team of three although it’s basically two and a half because one of the three only works for three days a week due to being a new mom and cutting down her hours, which is totally understandable. However my other colleague has taken three weeks off to move house and basically on Thursdays and Fridays I’m the only one around from my team. Which means everything ends up in my inbox/on my plate. It’s been a struggle to handle this and it’s basically made me come home completely broken on those two days. Add to that the fact that I’m having some issues with dinner and stomach pains and it’s not been a very fun week. Unfortunately for me this situation will last for two more weeks so I’ll just have to grit my teeth and get through. If this means less time for games and other hobbies and more time for sleeping and making sure I feel well then so be it. It will also probably mean my next post won’t be untill the weekend again because frankly I’m just too tired to sit down and write during the evenings.

Common Cold

Zurvan

Seems like I captured the Zurvan fight at just the right time. I always like the intermezzos that Square Enix builds into their trial fights and Zurvan is on the more epic side of said trials. I opted to not main tank this fight though since I’m not really familiar with it plus the other tank had like 10k HP more than I have (Warriors are filthy cheaters I tell you).
The progress on leveling Paladin has been slow but steady. I hit 68 tonight which means I should be 70 on Friday night and tick it off as another class done! In the meantime I’m enjoying tanking on Paladin a lot again, post 50 the job has gotten much more interesting with many more buttons to press than previously.

Being knocked down by a cold this week I didn’t really feel like doing much of anything. However yesterday during the afternoon I attended my very first live orchestra performance in the Concert building in Amsterdam. It was an orchestra plus choir from Eastern Europe and they performed music from various movies with the final hour being dedicated to music from Star Wars alone. It was a magnificent thing to attend and while I don’t necessarily enjoy classical music in general hearing an orchestra perform songs I know was something I felt I needed to experience. Even though when I came home I had a fever flaring up I’m happy I went. This did result in me calling in sick to work today after barely sleeping last night and dealing with all the discomforts that the common cold brings. I’ve thus recovered enough to try to attend work again tomorrow, even if it’s only for a part of the day.

Other than my cold and the concert I don’t really have much to tell right now. Being unwell kind of makes your days boring and mostly spent in bed. I’ve been in too much of a funk to really game a lot so apart from the progress on my Paladin I’ve not really touched anything else. I am planning to play a bit more Pokémon LetsGO as I start feeling better, and to change from playing FFXIV only to also playing a single player game on the side.

My Own Plan

Looking out over Tiragarde Sound

It’s been a bit of an odd week for me. I found myself slipping back into casual raiding on my Paladin. At the same time I’ve been trying to take a bit more distance from WoW and immerse myself a bit more into FFXIV, single player games and making sure that I have a healthy sleep schedule. I’m aiming to be in bed by 23.00 every night except Saturday because obviously I have a bit more time to sleep in over the weekend and as far as things go I notice that It’s having a good effect on my general mood.

The lack of clear focus in my MMO’s has me reconsidering what I want to do in them for the rest of the year. In FFXIV I’m quite certain that it boils down to leveling as many classes as I can. I’m slowly bumping up my Black Mage, while also catching up on gear with my White Mage. Unlocking Heaven on High, the Stormblood version of Palace of the Dead, will help me a lot with my leveling ambitions and will provide me with decent weapons for all my jobs. Being able to tick of level 70 on my remaining jobs will be very satisfying and I’m not really looking into doing anything else there right now.
Well that’s not completely true. I’m also busy unlocking any content that I may have missed from this patch and the last while supporting Doma with the rebuilding of the Enclave. Seeing that city grow and getting all the cutscenes has been very fun and satisfying. Plus it’s a gil income that I can definitely use.

In WoW my focus is slowly shifting away from traditional progress (raids and dungeons) and more to personal progress. I’m working on getting the BfA reputations Exalted on my Rogue while also completing the Battle for Azeroth achievements that are easy to obtain. This means I’m wandering around the world a lot looking for items, treasure chests and creatures to kill. I’m also slowly picking up the transmog farm again and have been running the T11 and Wrath of the Lich King raids to complete or start working on transmog sets. This has led me to discover that the Legacy Loot rules are atrocious and I’d much rather Blizzard reimplement the old way of running outdated content with group loot and a need/greed system for when you buddy up. Nonetheless I’ve been able to obtain a complete T11 set on my Paladin and one of the pets from the Raiding with Leashes IV achievement. I’ve stated earlier that I want to make an effort to level up one of the Allied races but for now that’s a weekend only project. I want to narrow my scope to my Paladin and Rogue mostly so that I don’t get overwhelmed with content and to make sure that I don’t spend too much time playing this game when I could be doing something else. This also means putting my Mythic+ ambitions on the backburner, but honestly with how the game plays right now I’m alright with that. Trying to get a weapon upgrade for my Protection spec has been atrocious and I’m not really content with the whole way Azerite Gear works either. So I don’t want to put too much energy into it where I can use it on things that are more important.

In real life I’ve gotten some very good news from my job. Up untill now I’ve been working as a “temp”. The rules are a bit confusing here in the Netherlands but it boils down to whether the company you work for wants to hire you on their own or via a temp agency. A lot of companies work with the latter because it’s easier to fire people that way and because it’s limited. You can only work a maximum of five years for a company via a temp agency after which you’re usually dismissed and have to look for a new job. I’m in my third year right now and didn’t have that much hopes on obtaining a normal contract but my boss surprised me last Friday with the announcement that they are working on it. This means a much better contract for me with a lot more vacation days that I have now (45 vs 20), a bonus that’s decided on how much profit the company makes, an extra month of salary and better sick leave arrangements. Seeing as my current temp contract runs until April 1st next year I’m hoping they’ll transfer me then which would be perfect because it lines up with me moving to my new apartment around that time aswell.

All of this has inspired me to pick up the slack in other areas of my life. I’m eating more healthy (no more candies and crisps) and trying to be more active when it comes to exercising. I’m picking up the courses that I started ages ago again and I’m generally in a more stable and happy mood than I’ve been in a very long time. I’m also trying to be less chaotic at work with how I do my job and be a bit more organized in my private life aswell. I’m going out more and planning a lot of fun things for the coming few months. I’m not quite where I want to be yet, I’m still full focus on losing weight, but my life finally seems to come together slowly. I can’t wait for 2019 and all the amazing things it will bring. I just need to make my own plans and stick to them and I’m positive that things will then work out in my favour.

Loading Update…

I suddenly realized that it’s been 9 days since my last blog post. This has mostly been due to me focusing on other things, mostly games, and also because I didn’t really know what I wanted to write about. Well I do now!

First off, my two weeks of freedom. Unfortunately I’ve not been able to get myself motivated enough to join the gym again. I’m just way too insecure right now and I’m scared that if I go people will laugh at me. Instead I’m opting to cancel my gym membership for the time being and start/continue working out at home. We have a crosstrainer in the attic, I have weights to use for my arms and there’s a mat which I can use to do my exercises in general on. With the weather turning sour aswell this means I won’t have to brave the wind and rain to get to a gym but instead move up a staircase and do my routine there. I’ve printed out some stuff I can do by myself at home and I’m hoping some results will be showing in the coming weeks.
The other thing I wanted to do was eat more healthy and that has been a major success. I don’t have any junkfood in the house anymore and have been eating way more healthy things. I’ve started taking my own lunch to work again and now I’m just scouring a proper container so I can bring some yoghurt with me aswell. Dinner has been veggie filled almost every evening, even the nacho dish I made last night, and I honestly have started feeling much better physically now that I’ve banned all the high fat and sugar foods out of my life.

Unfortunately most of my free time has still been dedicated to playing games although I did make a tiny bit of progress reading my book. I’ve also been cleaning out my room vigorously getting rid of everything I no longer need and just making sure it’s very clean so that my allergies don’t bother me as much as they normally do. I still plan to take up my cross stitching again, maybe this week when I don’t feel like logging into my games.

On the gaming front I’ve actually been making good time on my September Gaming Goals. I’ve ticked off all the World of Warcraft ones except getting my reputations to Exalted and maxing out my Professions. In FFXIV I’ve finished leveling my Machinist and started to level my Black Mage while also doing dailies to get my Weaver up.
The solo game is still a thing I need to work on but I have maybe figured out a way to start tackling my massive backlog. What I’ve been doing is making a top three game list for all my consoles that I really want to finish and then pick one of those three to start working on. Once I’ve gone through the top three I can pick a new top three and just keep on going through my backlog like that.
My top threes currently look like this.
PS4
1. Crash Bandicoot “NSane” Trilogy
2. Horizon Zero Dawn
3. Final Fantasy XV

Switch
1. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (excluding the Torna DLC).
2. Kirby: Star Allies
3. Octopath Traveler, alteast one chapter 4.

3DS
1. Professor Layton and the Mask of Wonders
2. Dragon Quest VIII
3. Epic Mickey

PC
1. Mickey’s Castle of Illusion
2. Tomb Raider
3. Rayman Origins

As you can see I’ve been trying to mix up RPGs with other genres. Doing RPGs back to back will definitely exhaust me as gamer so I’m trying to break them up as much as possible. As it stands now I’m playing the Professor Layton game on my 3DS during my commute to and from work. This gives me about 30 mins of play time per day, which is actually surprisingly enough time to make some serious strides in a game like this. At home I’m switching back and forth between Xenoblade and Crash Bandicoot, kind of depending what I feel like playing. Even though I’ve only obtained Crash recently it’s one of my top games to finish purely because of the nostalgia hit it provides. As far as the PC games go. I should be able to finish Mickey’s Castle of Illusion pretty fast. It’s a short game so an afternoon and an evening of playing may actually have me finishing this game. Tomb Raider isn’t that long either compared to some of the other RPGs I have on my list, especially Dragon Quest and Xenoblade.

All in all it comes down to me managing my game time better. I block hours to do certain things at work, I may need to start blocking hours for games aswell to get done what I want done. I’ll see. September is slowly crawling to an end and I have about 7 days to work on some of my goals still. See you next post!

Two weeks of freedom?

As I sit down to write this blogpost I’ve had a really long tiresome day. Having barely slept last night I could only think of my bed when I was at work but now that I’m home, and it’s actually time to sleep, my head is a bit too filled with random thoughts to really settle down and snooze. So instead I’m just going to write down what’s going on inside this messy brain of mine today and see if that will help me clear it.

We have a midyear evaluation at work and I had mine today. I tend to get the same comments every evaluation: you’re not professional enough and you lack some communication skills. So far I’ve taken the criticisms as they come but there has never really been a follow up to them. I tend to get told that I’m a bit blunt which may come across as me being bitchy at times but I don’t really see it that way myself. It may come with the fact that the moment I step foot into the office people start asking me questions within two minutes of me sitting down. I get a bit annoyed by that sometimes because I really would like the first ten to fifteen minutes of my work day for myself to make a planning, look at what kind of mails I have and just settle down before the questions are fired. I’m already not a morning person by any means so stuff like this just tends to get me irritable, which I then show in my answers to people. It’s not something that is completely concious but it happens nonetheless.
My manager has offered me to work with me on my professionalism and my communication skills and I’ll gladly take any chance to grow as a person at work. I’m just seriously curious what exactly I should do to make strides and grow, but I guess I’ll see in a few weeks when we have our first “session”.

In other news my dad and his girlfriend departed for Spain this afternoon to enjoy a two week holiday over there, leaving me alone in the house untill the 28th. I have to say that I’m kind of happy to have this time to myself because I was getting irritated a lot by them lately and I just really needed some space. I do hope that I can use the coming two weeks to start getting into the habit of going to the gym again. My weight has been bothering me for a very long time now and now that I’m able, for two weeks atleast, to spend my time the way I want to I kind of want to use to start setting up a gym routine again. Working out is healthy and even though the first few weeks tend to be tough I also know that it gives me energy and stamina, which translates into a better mood overall for myself. I may use the topic of gyms and workouts for my blogposts the coming weeks but that is yet to be seen.
For now though I want to reserve some time on the weekends, probably in the morning, and weekdays after work to go to the gym for 30 mins – one hour. I realise that I have to start from scratch again but that’s okay. I’m not setting the bar extremely high for myself. I just want to make sure that I’m going again and build a steady rythm of getting myself to go before actually pushing hard for weight loss goals.

Tied into the whole gym thing I also want to cook healthy for myself these two weeks. I have one pizza in the freezer for emergencies but as far as I’m concerned I want to cook myself healthy meals every day if I can. This probably means a lot of rice and veggies since that is what I enjoy. I’m also stocking up on stuff like yoghurt and fruit so I can take that as a snack during the evening/weekends instead of candy or crisps and I want to make sure I’m taking fruit with me to work every day. I have a new backpack incoming and an insulated lunch bag which means I could cut myself some fruit in the evening and put it in a plastic container in the fridge so that it can go into the insulated bag in the morning, keeping it more cool and fresh than it would be otherwise. I could also try to do something with the yoghurt that way but for now I’m a bit hesitant because it’s dairy and already kind of sour so I don’t really want to take it with me where it’s not properly cooled, because I probably can’t taste if it’s gone “sour” that way.

As far as games are concerned I  want to cut back on time on those and spend that time on my gym stuff and some other hobbies instead. I am probably going to tackle Trine 2 with a friend and I will still be playing WoW probably on a daily basis but that will probably be it. During the weekends I will have a bit more time to do some more and branch out to other games like FFXIV or a single player game of my choosing but for the week nights it’ll be WoW exclusive.
I want to get back to reading my book and tackling an embroidery kit that I’ve started a few years ago but never finished. I also really want to build one of the Toy-Cons from the Nintendo Labo kit I scored for cheap a while back, probably the motorcycle one since I can use that with Mario Kart for fun and giggles. I will make pictures during my building process to post for my blog so definitely stay tuned for that!

At the end of the day though my plans for the coming two weeks are hopefully a foundation for a change that is more lasting. I want to step away from constantly gaming and work on my health. I also want to pick up some of my old hobbies and make myself less reliant on my PC/PS4/Switch for enjoyment or relaxation. The biggest thing is that I want to start having a more structured life where I am more calm and capable of getting things done. As for right now I feel like I’ve gotten off my chest what has been going on in my head, which means I can close down the house and get ready for a good night’s sleep.

Birthdays, books and bringing down the chaos

As I sit down to write this post another weekend has gone way too fast. Granted it’s “only 19.30” as I’m writing this and I still have a few hours of evening to fill. However it feels like the two days respite you get inbetween the five days of hard labour seem to last shorter every week. Somehow the more stressful work is the faster the weekend goes. Normally I could attribute my short weekends due to sleeping in late but not this time. I woke up around 9.00 both yesterday and today and I didn’t really stay in bed for long after waking up either. This has caused my mornings to be filled with World of Warcraft and consequently freeing up my afternoons for other things.

Yesterday the weather was nice and I really needed to get my eyebrows back in shape so I decided to go into town to walk around a bit, poke my head into the “Used Products” shop we have and get my eyebrows done. I probably should have picked a different Saturday to do this because this weekend was the last holiday weekend for the country before schools and normalcy starts up again. Our city center was absolutely crawling with people and there were lines for everything. Success was had though! I bought a used copy of “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” for the Nintendo DS for only €10. I remember owning that game for my computer back in the day and even though I may still own the disc, I doubt I can get it to work on my current PC. The DS however is still going strong so I figured I would pick this up and enjoy it 13 years after release date. I also managed to get my eyebrows plucked and cut, after an hour wait, but decided against getting my hair done due to the fact that it was already late and I had to be home on time for the big event of the evening: My uncle’s 50th birthday!
I’m not sure how big of a deal this milestone is in other countries but here in the Netherlands we celebrate it in a big way when a man or woman turns 50 with set traditions and usually a very big party. So that’s where I spent my Saturday evening, dancing with my family and generally having a good time. A lot of my coming weekends will look like this since September seems to be the birthday month. It drastically cuts down on my time but it’s nice to see my family and friends and celebrate life.

As for today I decided to slowly start getting rid of stuff I don’t use or wear anymore. I wanted to start small so the thing I’ve tackled today was my jewellry box and my rack of earrings. There was a period of time where I owned over a 100 pairs of earrings. After getting rid of everything that wasn’t real silver, I’m slightly allergic to “fake” silver earrings, I’m now down to a total of 20 pairs of earrings/earbuds and I’m happy where I am. I’ve also gotten rid of a lot of cheap, bulky bracelets which in turn opened up some space to store my watches. All in all it was a very satisfying task and it will save me the headache of having to do it when I move out next year.

Finally I managed to get started in a book again for the first time in a few months. Last April I discovered Robin Hobb as writer and the amazing books she has written. I’ve bought the entire Farseer Trilogy and am currently a little over halfway done in the second book. I’m really hoping to finish it off in September and start reading the final book in the trilogy after. It atleast gives me something to do that doesn’t involve a screen and reading also improves my writing so it’s a win/win situation overall.

As for the rest of my Sunday though. I still have one or two chores to do and I really want to get atleast the Beast Tribe dailies done in FFXIV so my Machinist will gain a bit more experience. Otherwise I predict some more time in WoW to get the emissary quests done on my Paladin and an early night so I can be fresh for work tomorrow.

The final day of Blaugust

Screenshot around Costa Del Sol

Completely unrelated screenshot but Costa Del Sol is by far my favourite zone in FFXIV so I figured I would feature that at the start of my post. There’s something about that azure blue sea and the beaches that makes me feel like I’m on vacation and that’s a feeling I desperately need right now.

We’ve arrived at the final day of Blaugust. At the start I set a goal to write a post every day. Unfortunately things didn’t really work out as I hoped they would and I end the month just a few posts short of the fabulous Rainbow badge. On one side it irks me. I would have loved to write a post everyday and I had enough material to do so aswell. I was planning to talk about Octopath Traveler and I had so much to say about the Battle for Azeroth launch while also still doing some stuff in FFXIV. However a valuable lesson I’ve learned over the past month is that as an adult you have to make choices. There is just no way I can do everything that I want with the limited time I have. I love to game and I love to talk about gaming but when work gets to be super stressful gaming comes second to trying to stay healthy. There have been many a night where I’ve fallen asleep before or after dinner as I was exhausted. Even as I’m writing this blog post with the semifinal of the EU League of Legends Summer championship in the background I’m battling sleep. I’m just not giving in because I know I’ll wake up around midnight feeling really bad and not being able to fall back asleep. So sometimes I chose to go to bed early and minimize my screen time. Sometimes I’d choose to stay up a little later so I could finish a blog post or something in a game, knowing that I would be a bit of a zombie the next day. It happens and it’s how life is when you have very long work weeks.

All in all I’ve found this Blaugust a very positive experience. Hanging with the “crowd” in Discord was fun and even though I didn’t really get to commenting on other people’s blogs I did add a few more to my Feedly to read, which is nice. I want to continue having a regular posting schedule, which basically boils down to more than once or twice a week, because I have so many things to write about still and I’ve noticed that writing on this blog more often just helps me clear my head aswell. Especially the more personal posts, even though they always seem to end up a bit on the rambly side, help me organise my thoughts and deal with things that I normally try to deal with on my own.

So with that this is my final post for Blaugust and I’ve already got an idea of what my first post of September will be. Luckily September starts tomorrow, which means I’ll actually be rested (yay for Saturdays!) and I’ll have time to write. It was a pleasure to participate and I hope you all enjoyed my posts.

Sunday and chores

It’s a bit of an odd day today. As I realized that I hadn’t post anything since Thursday I figured I’d get back on the Blogging horse. I had set a goal to write a post everyday during Blaugust but unfortunately real life has gotten in the way and I’m okay with that really. I may schedule a few extra posts to see if I can make up for the days that I’ve missed but I’d have to check how many posts I actually have up so far and I’d have to come up with ideas for posts and well… My brain seems to be a bit too tired for that to happen right now.

I’ve been spending most of the morning going back and forth between World of Warcraft and cleaning the bathroom and my bedroom. I usually do my “chores” on Sunday because I like having a clean room when starting a new week on Monday and every now and then I add the bathroom to my routine aswell. I’m guessing as I move out and really have my own space I’ll clean a bit more often but for now I’m happy with my weekly dust and vacuum sessions. It also makes the day not completely about gaming, which is nice. I feel the need to “descreen” a lot these days and cleaning helps do just that. It lets me zone out and relax while also getting important stuff done. It may not be a favourite pastime but atleast the bathroom smells like lavender now, my sheets are fresh and clean and there is no more dirt and dust on my bedroom floor.

I mentioned swapping between gaming and cleaning and as far as gaming goes I’m making some strides on my Rogue to finish up the Alliance side of the expansion story so far. I’m finally doing the “Pride of Kul Tiras” quest chain after finishing up the last two chapters of the Stormsong Valley quest achievement yesterday. I’d expected to be dumped in a scenario of some sort but so far I’m actually in the middle of a gigantic questchain that spans all the new zones and three separate dungeons before leading up to the final dungeon, which is apparently a Mythic only one. With my item level being only 303 I’m still far away from clearing that one but atleast I’m making progress!

I’ve also dipped into FFXIV this weekend to complete the Moonfire Faire event before it would go away today. It was a nice short questchain and rather fun to do. I know a lot of people did the extra jumping puzzle to get on top of the event tower but I passed on that one. I was only interested in getting the new emote and the new outfit on both my characters so I did that and logged back out.
I did make sure to visit my house on my Moogle character since there has been a bug going around that you lose your house way faster these days. It would be such a shame for me to lose my home now that I was finally able to buy a small plot after borrowing money from a friend. I hope to get a bit more time into FFXIV the coming months (preferably until the end of the year) and start decorating my house and level my remaining classes. I’m so close to getting Machinist to 70… I really should hop back into this game again.