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Sandy’s Sunday: Work Sucks

As I’m sipping on a coke I figured I should sit down and write something.
Basically the past week has once again been super busy and chaotic when it comes to my job. My team is gradually growing smaller and as such we need everyone to be able to do everything. So my colleagues have been busy learning new tasks and I’ve been keeping an eye out for everything else that needed to be done. Couple that with a week with a ton of meetings and I was happy when it was finally time for the weekend so I could recharge a bit.
On Thursday I went out to dinner with a colleague/friend, which was really necessary to lift my spirits a bit. We had an awesome evening just chatting about everything and unwinding. Being in a warm and cozy restaurant enjoying a three course meal while outside it’s pouring has it’s charm. Luckily by the time we were ready to leave the weather had cleared up so I didn’t get home completely drenched.

Due to me getting home tired a lot I didn’t get much gaming time in. After I’ve finished leveling Ninja to level 80 and using Bard to level up my Trusts a bit I’ve been having a bit of a burn-out on FFXIV. I just didn’t feel like starting up the game at all so my Bard is still sitting at level 73 and otherwise I’ve not been making any progress. However I’m feeling the itch to log on again so I may do a few Trust dungeons today so I can finally leave Holminster Switch behind me and focus on the next dungeon in the bracket.
The game I did start up a few times over the week has been Pokémon Sword. I’ve been diligently working away at filling up my Pokédex and am currently sitting at 177 Pokémon registered. Only 23 more to get to my goal of registering 200 for this month! It’s actually gone surprisingly smooth. I’ve been focusing a lot on just evolving all the Pokémon I already caught and then I moved on to catching, and evolving, new Pokémon. I’ve also been participating in a lot of Max-Raids to try and obtain Pokémon that have Gigantamax forms, instead of just regular Dynamax ones. So far I’ve managed to catch a Gigantamax Snorlax, Butterfree and Coalossal. I’m still on the hunt for more!
In other Pokémon news, I haven’t actually watched the Pokémon direct but was nonetheless hyped when they announced an expansion to the Pokémon Sword and Shield games. Even though I wish that Game Freak wouldn’t be a sell out and just release a complete game from the start I can’t deny that I’m pretty happy to be getting more content to the game. As I’ve mentioned before I think the overall story of Pokémon has been a bit short this time around. Getting two new areas, with a lot more Pokémon introduced to the Pokédex, plus more story content, is exactly what I and others have been hoping for. As such I actually pre-ordered the expansion straight away so it will ready for me to play once June and November hit.

Finally instead of gaming I’ve been spending my time watching Netflix, specifically two documentaries: Don’t Fuck With Cats and Cheer.
The former has just been disturbing on all counts and I’m not sure if I would’ve watched it if I had known exactly what it would be about. It just goes to show that some people are deeply disturbed and should be locked away from society forever.
Cheer however has been a fun documentary to watch. I was a gymnast on a decent level from the age of 6-12. I never made national championships or anything but I was once in the top of my district for my age group aswell as making it to province (state for the US folks I guess?) championship. Where I was quickly desillusioned with my actual skills because my and our club actually performed pretty bad compared to the rest. Oh well. Anyway, Cheer is a documentary following the Navarro College cheerleading squad who have won a lot of titles. They pick out a few of the cheerleaders to follow more personally and basically show the preparation for the big National Championship that is held every year in Daytona Beach, FL. Cheerleading on that level is basically brutal. It’s gymnastics, tumbling, acrobatics and dancing all in one. Serious injuries happen, as shown on the documentary, and getting on the team that actually will perform the act on the championship is a struggle. Due to the stunts and acrobatics trust in your teammates is required. You need to be able to know that you will be caught if you fall. If someone fails to catch you the entire team gets punished. This sounds a bit harsh but is also understandable. You win as team but you also fail as team.
Watching that made me think of my own gymnastic days and give me a sense of missing out in a way. I think if I grew up in the US being a cheerleader would be totally up my alley, even with all the injuries. I think I would’ve absolutely loved it. Now however I can only look at these girls and hope they haven’t destroyed their bodies too much while doing what they love.

All in all it’s been a week of trying to get back into the work rhythm and giving myself plenty of time to rest up and relax after making long days in the office. Next week should be a bit more relaxed and with that I hope that I can get a bit more game time in when I come home!

Gaming Goals: February 2019

I can’t believe January is over already. Time seems to fly by these days, even if I’m spending significantly less time in games and more time watching Netflix and relaxing. Not playing as much games has also caused me to bit a bit more relaxed in my head and has gotten me going to bed earlier and fall asleep faster. The past week I’ve only played for an hour or so each night and it’s been great. I’m sure that at some point I’ll get back to gaming a bit more again but for now the game time is low and other activities time is high. I’ll see where it heads since I am going to formulate a few goals for this month. But first lets look back at January.

Gaming Goals

  • Level Dark Knight to 70 in FFXIV and complete all Job quests DONE
  • Level Samurai to 70 in FFXIV and complete all Job quests DONE
  • Nintendo GotM: Pokémon LetsGo. Technically cheating this one a bit but I want to finish it up in January
  • Playstation GotM: Spyro 2: RIpto’s Rage. I’m aiming for 100% completion and the platinum trophy here

So I’ve accomplished two of the goals on my list being the FFXIV related ones. I’ve actually spent a lot of time in January to getting these goals done and it’s taken up most of my gaming time. It’s also caused a bit of a gaming burnout to the point that I’ve not touched Spyro 2 at all and I’ve put in the bare minimum in Pokémon LetsGO. I did manage to get the 6th badge but I stalled out afterwards, which I’m actually quite disappointed about. I’m not sure what causes me to put down games and just not return to them but it’s a thing I want to stop doing.

Other goals

  • Book of the Month: Roger Daltrey – My Story (Thanks, Mr. Kibblewhite!) DONE
  • Show of the Month: Luther

So I finished up the book really early in the month and it has been a nice read. I watched the first season of Luther in full and am now halfway through season two. I have been watching other shows on Netflix however and finished “Tidying up with Marie Kondo” and “Consumed” in full so I got a bit more worth out of my Netflix for the month. I even managed to jam in “Carmen Sandiego” which I thoroughly enjoyed aswell.
All in all I’m quite happy here even though I didn’t get to finish the show I wanted to.


So now that we have January out of the way let’s look forward to February!

Gaming Goals

  • Playstation GotM: Kingdom Hearts 3.
  • Nintendo GotM: Pokémon LetsGO
  • Get all my crafters to 30 in FFXIV and complete all job quests upto and including level 30.
  • Level my Nightborne Mage in WoW

So ofcourse the game of the month for Playstation is going to be Kingdom Hearts 3. I’m about 5 hours in and I want to play through this game so much. I love the worlds, I love the fighting, I love the story. I’m itching to explore more of it and to get it completely played through by the end of the month. I’m lifting Pokémon LetsGO over to February so I can work on completing that aswell. Again I made it to the 6th gym and I really just want to get to the Elite Four atleast.

In MMO land I want to keep my goals light. The only thing I really “want” to achieve in FFXIV is to get all my crafting classes to level 30 and have all the job quests up untill that point completed aswell. I’m currently sitting on level 27 Blacksmith, level 24 Leatherworker and Level 21 Alchemist so that’s the three jobs that need to go up. I go up about two levels when doing all the Ixali dailies that I can and to complete those I only need an hour or so… So it should be a very doable goal.
As far as the leveling in WoW goes. I just really want atleast one Allied Race to max level. My Nightborne Mage is sitting at level 78 now and I’m not really setting a goal for myself level wise but I would like to be over 78 at the end of the month. Maybe I’ll get all the way to 120, maybe I’ll only make it to 85, I don’t know. I just want to spend a bit of time leveling and enjoying some of my favourite older zones again.

Other Goals

  • Book of the month: Ship of Magic (Liveship traders book 1)
  • Show of the month: Luther/Designated Survivor

I’m starting a new book and a new trilogy all in one go. It’s the second trilogy I’m going to read that’s written by Robin Hobb and it takes place in the same world as the first one only with different characters. I’m really curious how these books are compared to the ones I’ve read so I’ll report back as soon as possible when I’ve finished the book.
On the shows front I want to finish watching Luther and then start watching Designated Survivor again. I started that show at some point but kind of trailed off after ten episodes or so. I like the show and I want to watch more of it so that’s the plan.

All in all I’m mostly going to focus on the big game of the month which is Kingdom Hearts. Since I’m in a minimal gaming jam right now I’m trying to keep my goals light and attainable and will probably focus on doing other stuff instead. I guess I’ll see how far I’ve come at the end of the month!

FFXIV, Pokémon and Sabrina

It’s been an odd week for me. Pokémon LetsGO finally got released and I picked that up yesterday evening. I’ve been leveling my Paladin, although I’ve allowed myself to take a night or two off from that aswell and I’ve started watching the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina on Netflix.

With the new expansion announcement of FFXIV, Shadowbringers, I realize I’ve taken the decision to work on leveling my classes on just the right time. Blue mage is coming in patch 4.5, which probably means somewhere in Q1-Q2 of next year, and if all goes right I should be up for leveling a battle class again by then. Even though Square announced that the newly announced class will work a little differently.
I wasn’t surprised at all to find out that we were going to Garlemald, the current expansion has done it’s best to set up that premise. I’m also not too surprised that Yoshi P. hinted at Viera as the next race and I’m quite curious to see how they look. What did surprise me is the announcement of a “New Game +” mode. I may actually be quite interested in that, assuming it’s done properly. I also really hope that they’ve learned of the mistake that is Eureka and bring back the relic weapon in a more traditional way in the new expansion. All in all there is a lot to look forward to concering this new expansion and if all goes well I’ll be playing it at my own house when it comes out.
On the leveling front in FFXIV there’s not that much progress to mention. My Paladin sits at level 65 and thus is only 5 levels away from reaching the cap. With near instant queues for almost all roulettes and the ability to queue up for on-level dungeons this has got to be the fastest class to level up together with Dark Knight and Warrior. I’ve also diverted some of my time this week to take a stab at leveling my crafting professions and working a bit on the Heavensward Relic for Dragoon.

As mentioned before I picked up Pokémon LetsGO (Eevee) edition last night and so far I’m really enjoying the game. It’s really rather casual to play and even though I was a bit sceptical at first I actually really enjoy the new gameplay mechanics. Not having to wander through tall grass hoping this or that random encounter turns into the right Pokémon to catch is really refreshing and the interaction between your character and your partner Pokémon is just straight up adorable. It’s a game that you can easily pick up and play for an hour or so and it doesn’t really require much thought to play. I’m hoping that for once I can atleast complete the Pokédex on here, next to beating all the Master Trainers that are in the game.

Finally I’ve started watching a new show on Netflix: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. It’s basically a more adult retelling of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, a show that was a big part of my childhood/teenage years. It’s a bit more gory and horror like but so far no real scares. I’m about halfway through, I think episode 6 out of 10 and I’m probably going to finish watching it next week. After which I’ll have to find yet another new show to watch, but that is a decision for future me.

Going with the Flow

Ever since I started work in November my life has been messed up quite a lot. Going from having all the time in the world, to suddenly having to plan what I do with my time has been rough on me. And the moment I finally get used to my normal work schedule, I get asked to work extra. Which not only totally messes up my normal routine, but also makes me very very tired, leaving me to just go to bed after dinner and a shower rather than staying up and game.
The past two or three weeks have been absolutely insane for me, working a lot of hours and having my weekends booked with all types of activities, including a company party. But after sleeping for about 9 hours last night I finally feel refreshed enough to sit down and write something on here again.

So what have I been up to then?
I have been gaming over the last few weeks. Mostly focusing my time on FFXIV and The Division. I never thought I would pick up the Division, shooters aren’t really my genre, but I’m very happy that I did. I absolutely love the tactical gameplay. I love that taking cover is a huge thing in firefights. And I love the exploration and RPG part of the game.
My entire experience with the Division has been positive so far, with only one tiny thing that I was unhappy with: female character customization. To be blunt, if I want a Caucasian female look I end up with a character with a seriously weird face that can’t even have longer hair than a tiny ponytail. I like the fact that I can play as a woman though, I just wish they were designed better.

In FFXIV I’ve mostly been trying to get Lore cap and work on my relic. I’m a bit burnt out on levelling, so it’s nice to focus on something else for a bit. It’s also very relaxing to know you only really have to do ex-roulette as you log on and then can do random silly things instead of hardcore levelling or raiding.

Other interests
I’ve finally finished off season 3 of Hannibal and am now officially done with the show. It’s been a long ride and I have loved every minute of it. You can see the makers clearly intended for another season, as there is an extra scene after the end credits of the last episode that makes the ending very open. Alas NBC ended the contract and I fear we will never see a season 4 of Hannibal.
I have also resubbed to Netflix and am now devouring Daredevil. Currently on episode 9 of season 1, I should be finished on time for season 2. I really love the dark grittiness of the show, and my word the guy who plays Daredevil is hot. I will definately watch season 2 as soon as it’s out and after that I will probably turn my attention to Jessica Jones.

Something else I’ve gotten really into lately is make-up and beauty products. Working in an environment full of women some things rub off on you eventually and I notice I really like fiddling around with how I look. So over the past week I’ve really been investing into quality make-up products (brands like OPI, Clinique and MAC) that will last me a while, instead of the €3 lipsticks I’ve been buying up untill now. I’m still a rookie when it comes to a lot of things, I can’t contour my face for the life of me, but I enjoy picking out lipsticks and nailpolish for the day and week and just take a few minutes to make myself look pretty.
It really cuts into my budget though. A “prestige” brand will charge easily over €20 for a single lipstick, but seeing as it will last you a very long time and it just looks good AND doesn’t dry out my lips like cheaper brands do I feel like it’s a solid investment. Not to mention it makes me look much more professional at work.

So what is next?
For the time being I’m just going with the flow of things. When I’m tired I turn away from games and towards Netflix. I’ll try to blog a bit more regularly and will probably blog a bit more about my other interests besides gaming aswell… Although that will always be my main subject.
Seeing as March is a seriously busy month for me I really need to get my sleep schedule in order aswell, because coming home extremely tired every night is seriously sucky and not something I plan on doing for the weeks to come.