Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Table of Contents

Round 1 (Years 2000-2006)

Sunday, October 3, 2010

What's Going On?

Hi, everyone. I know you haven't heard from me in a while, and you're wondering what's going on with the blog.

First, let me fill you in on my mom. She was in the hospital for a month and then a physical rehabilitation center for another two months. She was able to come home in June, but she needs a lot of care and assistance. It doesn't look like she will ever be able to walk on her own again.

Ok, now about the blog. I feel horrible because you all have taken the time to read and comment on the blog, so I feel like I have let you down. In July, my computer died and I could not retrieve a backup of my neighborhood. I didn't post a "The End" post immediately because I was thinking I might restart the hood.  To be honest, since I've started playing Sims 3, I don't enjoy playing Sims 2 anymore. I don't have a desire to re-install all the Sims 2 games, hacks, and custom content. My free time is limited right now, so I want to spend it doing something I enjoy.

Unfortunately, that means this version of the Mega Maxis Hood has come to an end. I do hope I can continue this blog in the Sims 3. Think of it as a reboot. :)  Some of our favorite Maxis families from Pleasantview and Strangetown exist in the Sims 3, so I'm thinking of placing them all in the same hood and follow their lives there. I know Prosperity-style play in Sims 3 is challenging, but I'm experimenting with Twallan's Story Progression mod to see if it is possible. The mod has an option to use TS2 style aging, and it does appear to work.

Again, I am very grateful and humbled by your interest in my blog. Thank you!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Still Here... and that's not an April Fool's!

I'm sorry I haven't posted in a while. Real life has slammed me up against the wall recently. I've got some tight deadlines at work, and my mom is in the hospital recuperating from (another) mini-stroke.

I just wanted you to know the blog isn't dead and the Bachelor Challenge will continue. Please bear with me until things settle down.

Thank you so much for reading! Stay tuned...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Excited about the new S3 Expansion Pack!

EA has officially announced the next S3 expansion pack  --  Sims 3: Ambitions! It looks like we will finally be able to follow our Sims  to work! EAxis got a lot of things wrong with Sims 3, but I think they excelled in the career and skill building aspects.

The expansion pack goes on sale in June 2010, and I am super excited!

What are your thoughts on the new expansion pack?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Day Two: First Dates (Part 3)

"Good evening, Ladies," Nervous said that night. "I hope you all enjoyed your dates with Garrett today. It is now time for the rose ceremony. One by one, Garrett will call you up and invite you to continue this journey with him to love. If Garrett wishes for you to stay, he will present you with a rose. Garrett has five roses to give out tonight. Unfortunately, there are seven of you, so you can do the math. Garrett, when you're ready..."
"Thanks, Nervous." I turned to address the ladies. "I want you all to know that I had an amazing time today. I think you all are beautiful, intelligent, vivacious women. I am grateful for the opportunity to have met you. To the two women that I must say goodbye to tonight, you are no less precious than the women that remain. I hope that you meet that perfect man for you soon, and I'm sorry I couldn't be him. Having said that, Florence will you join me please?"
"Florence, I had a wonderful time on our date tonight. I would love for you to stay so that we can get to know each other better."

"Florence, would you accept this rose?"

"Oh, Garrett, I would love to stay. I can't wait for our next date."
"Tara, you are so bubbly and full of life. I would love if you would stay. Would you accept this rose?"

"Of course, Garrett! Thank you."

"Jessica, I love your spunky attitude. Would you accept this rose?"
"Certainly, sugar."

"Chloe, I have to admit you knock me off balance at times. I'm never quite sure what you're going to say and do next, but I love it. Would you accept this rose?'
"Yes, I will, Garrett."

Nervous cleared his throat and stepped up. "Ladies, Garrett, this is the final rose this evening."
I sighed a heavy sigh. I hated hurting anyone's feelings. I swallowed and said, "Nina."
Nina stepped forward.
"Nina, I know we haven't had much of  a chance to talk but-"
Nina interrupted, "Garrett, please don't say anything else. I think you are a great guy, and any of these women would be lucky to have you. Being here has made me realize that I'm not over my broken heart. I don't think it's fair for me to take the place of a woman who is ready to give all of her heart to you."
The other girls gasped and I felt the blood drain from my face. "What are you saying, Nina?"
"I'm saying that I can't stay. I can't accept your rose."
I watched her go with a vague feeling of loss. To be honest, on a physical level, I found her the most attractive, but I hadn't gotten the chance to know her as well as the other ladies.I mourned a little for what could have been.
Nervous cleared his throat and stepped up again. "Well, that was awkward. Okay, once again, Ladies, Garrett, this is still the final rose this evening. Garrett, good luck, dude."
I started to sweat. "Um, Natasha?"
"Natasha, I don't blame you if you want to slap me right now, but I sincerely would like you to stay. Would you accept this rose?"
"Garrett, I think this is fate. Of course, I'll stay."
"Thank you." I exhaled. That left Cassandra. I asked her to join me in the parlor.
"What happened, Garrett? I thought we had something special."
"Cassandra, all we did was shoot pool and go bowling. Look, I think you are a gorgeous woman, you really are. And you're a scientist, so I know you're brilliant as well. I just don't have the physical chemistry with you that I have with some of the other women here. I'm really sorry."
"I think you're making a mistake, Garrett."
"I don't think so, Cassandra. I'm sorry."
"I'm going to find true love someday. I know it's my destiny."
"I know it is too, Cassandra. I hope the guy that captures your heart understands exactly what he has in you." I hoped she didn't catch my dual meaning.
"Take care, Cassandra." I heard her sob.
"Oh, Will-darn-it!"
She grabbed me and kissed me. My knees were shaky, "Wow."
She smiled and said, "Eat your heart out, Garrett."
Cassandra: I can't believe Garrett dumped me first. Since Nina bailed on him, forcing him to make another choice, it's like he dumped me twice! Well, the last laugh is on him. I had woohoo in the house!
Natasha: I'm not bothered that Garrett almost cut me tonight. Fate has a funny way of working things out. 
Jessica: I'm thrilled that beyotch Nina is gone. Let's face it, she was my biggest competition. Garrett is all mine now!
Garrett: Tonight wasn't easy, and it's only going to get harder from here on out. The only thing that keeps me going is knowing that my wife is under this roof.
Nervous: So, can I get Cassandra's number? That girl is crazy as SimHell, but Garrett says she sure knows how to kiss.

If you're watching the current season of ABC's The Bachelor, you'll find Cassandra's admission at the end especially funny. She did in fact have woohoo in the house. I let the girls who had jobs keep them, and shot the dates around their work schedules. Cassandra brought home a co-worker named Nawaf. I didn't really pay him any attention, because I was busy shooting pictures of Garrett with the other girls. Good old ACR kicked in and a cut scene popped up showing Cassandra and Nawaf doing the deed. It happened too fast for me to get pics, so Cassandra didn't meet the same fate as Rozlyn.

I forgot to note the ACR scores before exiting the game, but Garrett did have the highest chemistry (3 bolts) with Nina. She got the boot (or rather I let her leave) because she had the lowest relationship scores with Garrett. She was the only one he hadn't made at least friends with. They have nothing in common. Every conversation ends with one of them plugging their ears. Cassandra had the lowest chemistry (1 bolt) with Garrett, so that's why she wasn't asked to stay.

I apologize for the pics in this post. The girls look like mannequins in the opening pic, and I think I close-ups of each person speaking at the end would have been a nice touch. I'm anxious to get this update out so that I can start thinking about Day 3, and I don't want to fire up the game at the moment!

Day Two: First Dates (Part 2)

That evening, I picked up Florence for our one-on-one date."You look great, Florence."
"Thanks." She smiled shyly.
"It must have been heaven to have the mansion to yourself this afternoon."
"It was certainly quiet without the other girls arguing, and it made it much easier for me to dream about our date this evening."
I blushed and squeezed her hand.
"I dressed warmly like you asked. Where are we going?"
"The Ice Cafe. Have you ever been there?"
"Is that the restaurant with the ice rink out back?"
I nodded. "That would be the place."
"Wow." She beamed. "That should be fun, but I have to warn you that I haven't ice skated in years."
Florence wasn't kidding. She fell as soon as she slipped on the ice. "I told you I was rusty!"
"Don't feel bad. It's like riding a bicycle." I reached down to help her up.

We skated towards the center of the ice.

I showed off a cool move on my own,

and landed on my butt. "I guess you're not the only one who's rusty, Florence." It was her turn to help me up.

Florence took my hands in hers. "Maybe if we hold on to each other, we'll have a better chance of staying upright."
"Sounds good to me." We twirled around together in a small circle.

I looked into her eyes which were gleaming in the moonlight. "This is really nice, Florence."
"Yes, it is."
We were in our own little solar system, revolving around each other like dual stars.Like gravity, the urge to kiss her was drawing my lips closer and closer to hers. I leaned in,

and knocked us both off balance. "Epic fail," I groaned into the ice.
Florence was laughing good-naturedly. "Maybe it's time for dessert?"
"Don't have to ask me twice." We headed inside the warm cafe and were quickly seated.

It didn't take long for our Baked Alaska and champagne to arrive. "Florence, I'd like to propose a toast to us, to a lovely evening, and to one of the best dates I've had in a long time." We clinked glasses.

"Garrett, this evening is turning out even better than I imagined. Being out there on the ice with you was magical. It felt natural and safe."
"You felt that too?" I was thrilled.

"Garrett, I'll be honest with you. I'm not the type of woman who falls easily, and certainly not for a man who's dating six other women. But my good friend Malcolm says I need to fight more for what I want."

"I think you're worth fighting for." 
This time, I reached for her hand.

"This friend of yours, Malcolm, sounds like a wise man. What other advice would he give you?"

"Take the skates off before you kiss." And with that, she gave me a soft, but passionate kiss.Any lingering cold from the ice quickly melted in her warmth.

"That Malcolm is a bloody genius." The rose ceremony was to start in a couple of hours, so we reluctantly had to make our way back to the mansion.

I gave her one more kiss before helping her into the car. There was no doubt in my mind who was getting the first rose.

I have to say that I *love* the twirl interaction on the ice rink! Florence and Garrett were so adorable twirling together. The Ice Cafe is going to be a permanent fixture in Bluewater Villages, so don't be surprised if it pops up in future updates.

I hope Florence wasn't behaving out of character. I see her as being a very passive person, and I would like to see her blossom (pun intended) into a more assertive woman during this process. With the likes of Jessica, Nina, Cassandra, and Chloe to contend with, she can't be a wallflower if she wants to capture Garrett's heart.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Day Two: First Dates (Part 1)

Things were still tense in the house, so I decided our first dates would be about having fun. I wanted to see if the ladies could let their hair down and just be themselves.
My first date was with six of the ladies: Jessica, Natasha, Nina, Tara, Cassandra, and Chloe. I took them bowling. 
I picked up a ball right away, curious to see which ladies would follow suit.
Tara jumped in and bowled a strike and gave an adorable cheer. I wasn't surprised that Tara was the first one to loosen up and have fun. She seemed to have a knack for enjoying whatever situation she was in.
Jessica stared down the lane with determination. She was taking the bowling as serious as the Bachelor competition. That concerned me. I wanted Jessica to be here for me, not just to prove that she could beat all of the other girls.
Poor Nina struggled with her first ball.
I went over to her lane and gave her some pointers.
She was a great student.
After our first game, we took a break for lunch. Cassandra, Chloe, and Tara joined me at a table,
which left Jessica, Natasha, and Nina at their own table.
"Ladies, thank you for coming on this journey with me. I know this is not a conventional way of finding that special someone, and I'm sorry you have to endure the group date experience, but I'm looking forward to having a good time and getting to know each of you better. I'm an open book, so feel free to ask me anything."
"What are your hobbies, Garrett?" Tara asked, "Are you into art?"
"Are you crazy, woman?" Cassandra hissed from across the table. "We managed to get some time with Garrett away from those floozies, Jessica and Nina, and you're asking him about art?"
I laughed, "So what do you want to ask me, Cassandra?"
"Who's your ideal woman?"
Chloe snorted, "You're giving Tara grief, Cass? Could you be anymore cliche?"
Chloe went back to the dessert menu, "That tartlette was really good!"
I said, "At the risk of offending Chloe with a cliche, my ideal woman would be my best friend, someone I can talk to and dream with. Someone easy-going and laid back. Low maintenance."
"Ha," said Chloe, "You better send the other table packing then."
I whispered, "Just between the four of us, I'm glad you three ended up at this table."
"Awww," said Tara and Cassandra.
"I think all three of you are sweet."
Chloe said, "You think I'm sweet? Then I haven't done my job."
We all laughed. "Seriously," I continued, "I'm a bit on the shy side. I don't know how well I'd do with someone who drew a lot of attention to herself."
As if on cue, we heard a ruckus coming from the bowling lanes.
Jessica was mixing it up with a townie.
"What going on?" I asked Nina.
"Amanda was bragging about Armand's latest party, and rubbing it in that Jessica wasn't there."
"Who's Armand?"
Nina smirked. "Jessica's ex-husband." When she saw the shock on my face, she added, "You didn't know she had been married." She was more stating a fact than asking a question.
"No," I said. How could I have known? I had only met Jessica yesterday. This revelation did drive home the fact that I had little time with these women, so I needed to use it wisely. I couldn't be blind-sided like that again.
Natasha came over and started to dance. "Let me guess, my aura isn't looking to good right now?"
She shook her head, "I just thought you needed some cheering up." 
"Thanks." It was sweet of her to distract me from the fight.
Chloe cut in on Natasha. "If you need cheering up, handsome, I have better ideas." And with that, she kissed me. It was soft peck, but it was still the first kiss I had shared with any of the women. I wasn't used to public displays of affection, especially not in front of five other women who could potentially become my wife, but it didn't matter at the moment.
"Wow," I said.
Chloe smiled. "You got that first date kiss out of the way, now you can relax."
"Thank you." With a mix of regret and relief, it was time for the group date to end. I escorted the ladies home, then went to my home to prepare for my one-on-one date with Florence.

Sorry for the delay in getting this post out. I do most of my playing and blogging on the weekends, and the past few weekends have been busy. 

Jessica, Jessica, Jessica! That girl starts trouble wherever she goes. It's not enough that she and Nina are constantly going at it. No, she also has to fight with a townie in the middle of her date.

Natasha really did autonomously dance with Garrett while Jessica was fighting. I thought that was funny. Chloe also kissed Garrett autonomously.

Finally, I would like to send a special thank you to the jerk that spammed my blog comments this week. Because of you, I've had to turn comment moderation back on.