Someone get me a hazmat suit!

Josh was sick before we went to PAX, but he was on the mend and we hoped, foolishly, that he would continue to get better. A busy weekend, coupled with late, restless nights, didn’t give his body many chances to heal.

He eventually felt so bad that he left work early on Friday and went to see a doctor, thinking it was a mild chest infection, only to be diagnosed with acute sinusitis and bronchitis!

Josh: Acute sinusitis & bronchitis

J3 decided that he wanted to be just like Daddy and developed a mild fever on Thursday evening, which got up to 101.7 on Friday. His eyes were red, inflamed and ‘gunky’, and he had five poopy nappies! Not just a little poop either, these were all blowouts.

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J3: Fever, conjunctivitis & diarrhea

Today J2 joined the party, on the way home from Kroger he made a squelchy noise in his car seat, I looked in the rear view mirror and when I asked him if he was okay his eyes rolled back into his head and that’s when I noticed the vomit. He heaved again, his eyes snapped back, he said, “eww”, and then laughed.

I quickly pulled over, parked in a random car park and cleaned the boy up as best as I could. Fortunately I’d remembered to pick up the change bag so I had wipes, and diaper sacks and, most importantly, a change of clothes for him.

I called Josh on the way home to have him prepare the J’s bedroom so we could put J2 down for a nap as soon as we got in, Josh sounded awful and in the background I could hear J3 crying. It was at that point that I started to feel nauseous.

J2: Vomiting, fever & headache

Now, dear friends, don’t you start to worry about me, I’m not sick. Yet. Just feeling mumtired, so, once the Super Bowl’s over everyone is going to bed!

Me: Tired

Until next time,
Laura x

This week in the World of Slimming 2/2/17

As I said last week, I am starting again.
I asked the moderators to reset my profile, take away all of my awards and put me back to the beginning of the 12 week intro program.

And it worked!

We went to San Antonio, had a great time at PAX, and I was completely off plan. This gave me a massive gain on the scales, I actually ended the weekend at 218.2 pounds!

Tuesday rolled around and I jumped back in with two feet, I had fruit for breakfast, a lovely salad for lunch and made Taco Soup for dinner. Josh wasn’t too keen on the soup, he has an issue with texture and didn’t like the cooked tomato and green chili, next time I’ll blitz it so that it’s smooth. He did like the taste however, and I also forgot to add the frozen corn and cooked rice, so that will give it more body too and make it even more filling than it already is!

Weigh-in day came and I was hoping to be, at most, 215 lbs, just to be back at the beginning and to start again. I was so happy when the scales read 212.0! Not only did I lose my vacation pounds, I lost a little bit more too!

Here’s how I plan on keeping it going this week:

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I’ve added a little syn marker where I plan on using syns, and Sunday will be a flexible syn day due to the Super Bowl party we’re heading too. I think that if I can have a blowout weekend and still lose weight during the week, I think I’ll be okay with one synful meal!

Until next time,
Laura x

PAX South 2017 (tbc)

PAX is short for the Penny Arcade Expo, it is a convention that is solely about games, video games, card games, board games, role playing games etc., there are gaming tournaments, sneak peeks of upcoming releases, nerd core bands, and panels hosted by some of the internets gaming celebrities, whether they review games, stream their gaming sessions live, or make ‘Let’s Play’ videos for YouTube.

PAX = Games, y’all.

To read more about the history of PAX, click here

We’ve wanted to go to a PAX for years but we’ve never had the funds and opportunity coincide, so when tickets for PAX South 2017 went on sale last year I snapped up a couple, and then we promptly forgot about them! So, it was a lovely surprise to get an email at the beginning of January telling us that our badges were on the way!

Sorry folks J3 is crying for Mummy, so for now you should read up on PAX and the Penny Arcade team in general, and I’ll leave you with this super cute picture.

 

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J2 will LOVE looking back at baby pictures when he’s older!

Until next time,
Laura x

 

 

This week in the World of Slimming 1/26/17

So, yep, that’s that.

This week I completely fell off of the wagon. Lately I’ve been talking the talk but finding it increasingly difficult to walk the walk, and it finally caught up with me.

There is good news however, while weighing in online I realized what my problem is:

Since Christmas I’ve really struggled to get back into things and the weight has slowly crept back on. I’ve not been dealing with it, just letting it happen, which has made me start to feel really guilty, I’ve had some moments of self-loathing and doubts as to why Josh should care about me if I don’t care about myself. Yep, it got pretty dark at one point.

My solution is to wipe out my history. I’ve asked the admins to remove my awards, and clear out my progress, starting from scratch at today’s weigh in of 213.8 pounds. This way there’s no crushing guilt from knowing that I’ve wasted the hard work of last 6 months, or feeling like I’ve climbed a huge hill only to roll back down and have to start again even though I’m already exhausted.

That all being said, we are going on vacation this weekend. It’s time for PAX South in San Antonio! We are super excited and I plan on being off-plan until Tuesday, from then it will be Slimming World all the way. Josh has even agreed to do it with me, one hundred percent.

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So, we’re going to do a lot of walking and eating, be complete nerds and have a great time!

Follow us on twitter and Instagram for a rolling commentary of our weekend.

Until next time,
Laura x

Our Favorite Tabletop Games for Two Players (Part 1)

We love games.

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Most of our tabletop game collection.

So, I’ve just counted them all up, and I think we have 64 different table top games. They range from 1 player (we only have a couple) to 10 or more players! This post, however, will be focused on games that can be played with 2 people.

Oh, did I mention that Josh is helping me with this one? He is my opposition in these 2 player games, after all. The competitive ones that is.

Out of all of our games, at least half of them can be played with two or more players, and here are five of our favorites…

  • Ascension – Card – Deck building
    You use your deck to fight cultists and monsters, and to attract heroes to your cause, all with the aim of earning shiny crystals! The person who has the most crystals at the end of the game is the winner!
    We like this game because everyone starts off on an even footing, everyone has access to the same cards and it’s pretty easy to get the hang of.
  • Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game – Collectible miniatures – Combat
    This base game comes with two tie-fighters and one x-wing miniature,  to build up your fleets will require some investment, but if you love Star Wars, miniatures and games, then it’s worth it. You choose which fleet you want to command, Republic or Empire, Bounty Hunter ships are also available separately, and then you fight it out!
    Josh likes this game because it’s the best depiction of a ‘dog-fight’ in a board game that he’s seen, and they did a great job at making it feel like an authentic Star Wars experience.
  • Sushi Go! – Card – Set collection
    Sushi Go! is so cute! Every card has an illustration of a sushi staple, from dumplings to nigiri, to chopsticks! Everyone gets dealt a hand, from which you choose one card to keep, then everyone passes their deck to the person on their left, and you choose another card from your new hand, you keep passing and choosing until there are no cards left. Using the cards you decide to keep you build sets, and your sets are scored at the end of each round. The winner is the person with the most points at the end of the game.
    We like this game because it’s portable, easy to learn, and can accommodate up to 5 people, perfect for when you’re waiting for your food at a restaurant!
  • Ticket to Ride – Board – Network building
    We have TtR: Europe, it has some different mechanics from the original TtR, but we think that makes it better. The aim of this game is to spread your train network over the map, whether it’s the US, Europe, Asia or any other version they’ve published! To do this you use different cards to allow you access to possible routes, you can focus on collecting resources for yourself, or collecting resources you know your opponent needs.
    We like this because we love the tactile nature of the individual train cars, the strategy in planning which routes to go for first, and the knowledge that you’ve just blocked your opponent from completing one of their routes!
  • PandemicBoard – Co-operative
    Yes, that’s right, while playing this game you work as a team.
    Four deadly diseases have started to spread over the world and it’s up to you, members of the World Health Organization (WHO), to stop it. You must treat the cities where infection has spread, cure the diseases completely then eradicate them! Well, to win all you need to do is cure them, but I like complete victories.
    This game is hard. It’s supposed to be hard. You will lose more often than you win. But that’s okay because you’re playing games with someone you like, maybe even love, and that’s the most important thing.
    We like Pandemic because of the feeling of having a team mate; it requires a lot of forward thinking and strategy; and when you do win you feel great!

That’s just 5 of our top favorite games for two people, stay tuned for Part 2.

Until next time,
Laura x

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Foggy Inspiration

We had a late night, and a very early morning. I got the boys down for a nap at 7:10, that may give you an indication of how early I was awake.

Josh was asleep, the boys were asleep, the apartment was quiet, and it was beautiful outside, so I went for a walk. All. On. My. Own.

dscn2986It has been raining a lot here lately, as it has for most of the south-east US, so the boots were a must this morning.

dscn2989dscn2993I love foggy mornings, everything’s blurry and out of focus, that shape in the distance could be a bush, or it could be bear, or a troll. Everything has the potential to be anything else.

dscn2996And with fog comes dew.

Until next time,
Laura x

This week in the World of Slimming 1/19/17

I have lost my mojo.

I don’t know where it went, but if anyone would like to help me find it, by giving me some inspiration or just telling me that I’m fat and need to lose weight, then that would be much appreciated.

Even though I ate Whataburger, Raising Cane’s and a whole bag of mini Reese’s cups, I did manage to lose 2.2 pounds. The only reasons I lost weight this week was because I inadvertently skipped meals, and managed to fit some exercise in.

So, here we go again, trying to refocus and get my head back in the game. I want to win, and the lower the score on the scales the better.

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Wish me luck!

Until next time,
Laura x

D&D – How to Build a Character. 

*This post contains affiliate links.

We love Dungeons & Dragons, if we weren’t so busy, and each session didn’t run around four hours long, we would play way more often. As it is, we’ve only played twice in the past three months!

During the first few sessions the things that take up the most time are character building and explaining to the players how the world works, and their characters place in it.

I love this part.

My love for character creation is what led to Josh running a campaign for just me, but I was playing four characters. They were all female, were different races, classes and came from different backgrounds, but had all come together to form The Happy Huntress Guild. They were the only all-female hunting guild and were just starting out; the bigger, older guilds didn’t like the new competition and were constantly trying to thwart our missions.

This story came about because I wanted to try playing as a different class to my usual Bard, but I didn’t want to commit to just one, if I’m experimenting then why not go all out?

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So, there are a few ways start to thinking about a character:

  • You know what race you want them to be, or,
  • You know what class you want them to be, or,
  • You know what they’re like, generally, as a person, or,
  • Any combination of the above.

Each race has it’s positives and negatives, Dwarves are resistant to poison and can see in the dark, but they are also slower than other races.
Dragonborn have bonuses to their strength and charisma, but due to their appearance and heritage they are more likely to be met with caution and distrust.
Humans, on the other hand, don’t have any outstanding positive traits, but neither do they have negative ones.
There a new playable races being trialed and published all of the time, but in the Player’s Handbook*, published in 2014, there are nine detailed races to choose from.

As I said earlier, I usually pick the Bard class, owing to my love for music, and getting inspiration from Sam Riegel and Critical Role.
Josh leans towards the Cleric and a couple of friends of ours always pick the Ranger and Rogue.
These choices, I feel, are more personal. I love music, Josh likes helping people, our friends love to go hunting, using bows, and being stealthy while doing it.
As with the races, there are new playable classes being trialed and published all of the time, but in the Player’s Handbook*, there are 12 classes to choose from, and there’s always the option of multiclassing!

As far as the moral character of my character goes, I like to play chaotic good, meaning that I might not always do the lawful thing, but I do it for the right reasons

  • chaotic evil – most monsters
  • chaotic neutral – wild animals
  • chaotic good
  • lawful evil
  • lawful neutral –
  • lawful good – Clerics, Paladins, Priests etc.

All of the different combinations of the above choices come to 648! That makes for a lot of variety, which can be even more varied when you create your characters backstory.

You could be a lawful good, elven, paladin who is an orphan and was raised in a temple to fight the good fight, or a lawful good, elven, paladin from a rich family who only became a paladin because it’s a family tradition.

Honestly, that’s what I love most about D&D, every game is different, even if almost everything is the same.

D&D for life, yo.

Until next time,
Laura x