An Exercise In Trivial Pursuits

Fatshion, Food & Frivolities – Life in Las Vegas & Singapore


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Support my husband’s game – Axiom Verge

It’s official! Details of the first release of T’s much-awaited game Axiom Verge was announced a few days ago via the Playstation blog. The PS4 version will be out 31st March 2015 for the Americas and 1st April 2015 for Europe.

And just today, they also announced that PS PLUS members get a discount during launch week!

If you know anyone who owns a PS4 or loves metroidvanias or retro-style video games, please alert them to it! It will also be coming out at a later date for PS VITA. T is currently working on a PC release so anyone with a PC around the world can purchase a download from Steam very soon!

As I’ve previously mentioned, video games hold no weight in my life – perhaps a little unfortunate for someone who is married to a game developer. I am happy watching from the sidelines.

In the last few days, I have been following comments on both the US blog post as well as the one for Europe. I then made the mistake of going to NeoGAF to read more. While there are many who are genuinely stoked for the game, there are also countless who argue that USD20 is too much for an indie game. Some assumed indie equated to poor quality when compared with games produced by big studios, some mentioned investment value, some others are just too cheap to pay anything more than a pittance. I don’t know about video games but I have never seen people argue the price down for an album from an indie band. How weird is that?

If you like the game, buy it. If you can’t afford it, don’t.

It made me sad to see people questioning the production value of something I’ve seen being slaved over by one extremely lonesome man for 5 years. If he wasn’t spending all his free time working on it while holding down a full-time job, he worked 12hr days for 7 days a week when he finally went indie full-time.

T is precise and meticulous while at work. He is friendly and considerate to those around him though incredibly shy and introverted. He never set out to create a game just for profit. He really truly loves what he does.

On many a night, he would bring his sketch book to bed – yes, he hand draws the scary stuff you see in the game. On others, he would get up at 2am (hours after we’ve gone to bed) and excuse himself (yes, he’s very gentlemanly that way) to go back up to his office to work, often till daybreak.

The game was the centre of his life – until I moved in and we got married. As a singleton, he worked on Axiom Verge every day after work and on weekends. I was determined to entertain myself despite having no friends here, just so he would still have lots of time to do that. If you know me, that required all the self-control I could muster.

About 6 months ago, he left his day job and dived into the development of the game full time – thankfully, with the aid of Sony’s Pub Fund. But without the security of a regular income or health insurance, we had to be more aware financially. I think we have done pretty decently by being thrifty. My grocery budget for food has been about USD35 a week for the both of us. I cook almost every meal we eat except for the occasional meal out with friends or family. And as you know, I’m now a super bargain hunter – despite how much I love clothes, shoes, accessories and cosmetics I haven’t bought anything full priced since I left my job. I obviously can’t afford it anymore. Also, for the first few months after he left his job, we actually went without health insurance and even had to ration the remaining bit of our medications as well as rescheduled appointments until early this year.

I’ve been poorly of late and I’m breaking the small kitty we have with all my medical bills. My dizzy spells and hypoglycemia induced delirium keeps T on his toes.  On top of that, he had to take me to my countless doctors’ appointments and lab work several times a week while trying to finish the last leg of his game so he could launch it. But life is an on-going challenge for everyone – some unpredictable things happen, some as a result of the choices we make. I’m sure we’re not the only ones struggling and it definitely could be alot worse.

My husband is a man who is not motivated by money. He sold his Corvette in a heartbeat to raise funds to treat our dog when he had cancer. Everyone thought he was crazy and told me to talk him out of it. But that’s the man I married. When he loves something or someone, he does it with everything he’s got. We actually talked about selling our house and moving into an apartment if it needs be. I even took pictures of our furniture for online listing! And you know, I’ve told him that if this game doesn’t sell well and takes him to the poor house, I’m going along for the ride.

The game will do whatever it will do. I haven’t a clue on the gaming industry and have absolutely no insight to this genre at all. The fact that it’s completed and he did it entirely by himself is already a feather in his cap. His education, experience and skills shines through the final product. If it doesn’t translate to real dollars, so be it. I married a man who dared to dream and has put everything on the line to see it materialize. And I would like to reaffirm that his conviction to his craft is not for nought.

There is something super attractive about a man so passionate for his work. I love seeing the joy in his eyes when he is drawing, animating and programming. And I want him to be able to do it for as long as he can. We can always go back to Singapore and I will return to work so that he can stay home to work on his next game while helping to raise our offspring. *Koffkoff*

Anyway, what I understand of the game is that, while reminiscent of the art style in Metroid (also didn’t know what this was until he showed me a few months ago), it controls like Contra (this I know) and is influenced by a whole slew of features in other retro games – ultimately boyhood fantasies from the 80s almagamated.

So anyway, long rambly post over. Please support my husband’s game – Axiom Verge because

  1. This is a game that will entertain you for hours – days and days if you are super thorough.
  2. It is at most only USD20.
  3. T is a sweetie pie.
  4. We’re crowdfunding for diapers!
  5. You are curious to see what I have given up my wonderful life in Singapore for.


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Fat-shionista #600

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Today’s lab work was easy. We were in and out of the clinic within an hour. It was really crowded when we got there and all the seats in the waiting room were taken, so I was really surprised it got to my turn so quickly. I was also glad the nurse taking my blood samples was quick too! 1 needle and 3 vials. No retry needed. Very often, I have to give both inner elbows and also the back of one of my hands. Been told repeatedly how fine my veins are. Also I’ve had blood spurt out from a vein, only then to stop flowing completely. So with the luck I got today, I’m very thankful and it put me in a good mood. The little things count when times are dreary, you know?

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What I’m wearing today:

Top: Black & white striped tank from OLD NAVY

Outerwear: Mint green cardigan from OLD NAVY

Leggings: Grey leggings from OLD NAVY

Accessories: Pink frosted sugar cookie brooch from TWINKIE CHAN

Footwear: Dark Taupe moto boots from MADDEN GIRL


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Fat-shionista #599

This is just a short post. T took these photos while we were at The Cupcakery in Henderson. They have sugar-free cupcakes and that meant that I could have one today! Life of a carb/sugar-counting diabetic, you know?

I really like my maxi skirt. Probably not the best angle to see it, since my husband is way taller than I am. Pity Wet Seal filed for bankruptcy recently. I have several pieces from there that I really like. Maybe I’ll document them soon.

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What I’m wearing today:

Top: Grey tank top from OLD NAVY (it really is the perfect tank in my opinion)

Outerwear: Black & white polkadotted long cardigan from H&M

Accessories: Bright pink bauble statement necklace from FOSSIL (my go-to accessory as you might already have figured)

Bag: Pink & Beige HORSESHOE COVE magazine tote from KATE SPADE

Bottom: Multi-coloured print maxi skirt from WET SEAL

Footwear: Dark taupe moto boots from MADDEN GIRL


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Fat-shionista #598

This used to be something I do for fun because it’s so frivolous, it makes life a little less mundane. But with the recent developments with health issues, dressing up and documenting what I’m wearing has taken a back seat. While I’m not bleeding to death or suffering severe pains, there is just a significant enough discomfort for me to avoid wearing more than jumpers and leggings. It’s been a little harder to stick that smile on for the camera too.

But I’m not one to allow myself to wallow too long and to some extent, I find it rather self-indulgent too. So while I go get my blood drawn again for the 3rd time in 2 weeks for more lab work, I kinda dressed up for it today.

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What I’m wearing today:

Dress: Green/Navy Floral Silhouette Dress from Old Navy

Accessories: Black & yellow geometric acrylic statement necklace from H&M; Natural bamboo weave bangle from Island Shop International

Leggings: Black cropped leggings from Old Navy

Footwear: Tan Bow-Tie Ballet Flats from Old Navy

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Fat-shionista #597

So my family left last Wednesday morning and it’s been a week since they’ve been gone. Never gets any easier. I’ve washed their dirty clothes and bedlinens but I’ve left them untouched in the guest bedrooms. Basically trying not to reset the rooms so that I can hold on as long as I can. It’s been so quiet and I’ve been all mopey. Save for a short trip to the grocery store and post office, I haven’t been out all week until today. T and I went to Benjarong – a thai restaurant near our house. So yay! Not in sad leggings and baggy sweatshirts today.

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What I’m wearing today:

Dress: Black & White floral print 3/4 sleeve dress from OLD NAVY

Outerwear: Olive green pea coat from FRENCH CONNECTION

Accessories: Lilac and gold statement necklace from H&M

Bag: Pink & Beige HORSESHOE COVE MAGAZINE TOTE from KATE SPADE

Leggings: Bright pink leggings from BETSEY JOHNSON

Footwear: Dark Taupe moto boots from MADDEN GIRL

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Fat-shionista #596

 

IMG_0228The weather in Las Vegas today was awesome! Just 2 days ago on New Year’s Eve, we had a super cold front and it snowed! Where we lived, there were only flurries but other parts of the valley experienced heavier fall. And that was the day we went to the Premium Outlet North where all the shops are not connected and you had to walk in the open. My mum and sisters were bundled up with scarves, gloves and beanies! Today however, it was just warm enough to get away with a jumper and a scarf – it was about 6 degC and if you’re in the sun, it’s totally toasty.

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What I’m wearing today:

Top: Grey HEART & SOUL jumper from OLD NAVY

Accessories: Brown pleather belt from STEVE MADDEN; Pink & purple floral barrettes from H&M; Purple scarf with sequins from DELIA*S

Bag: Pink EMERALD AVENUE AMY crossbody bag from KATE SPADE

Footwear: Grey MAIA boat shoes from LeBunny Bleu

A big thank you to the kind people at LeBunny Bleu for these shoes! Do check out their new arrivals!

 

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Christmas in New York 2014

I lie here in bed next to my snoring husband as I hammer out this post on my iPhone. It’s a quarter to 9 in the morning and I’ve already pottered around the house doing some chores – mostly laundry and lunch prep. We got home close to 11pm last night after flying out of New York State through Syracuse airport. We had originally gotten tickets in and out of JFK but the trauma of driving through New York City traffic after we arrived summoned our courage to spend another $2k to change our exit arrangements. So unlike the previous trips, we never ventured back into the city again.

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Our first stop was Nanuet where T’s grandmother still lived in the house his mother grew up in. It’s been there since the 40s and T’s Grandfather Swanson built it. We however checked ourselves into the Candlewood Suites, just 5 minutes away from that house, and stayed 2 nights. Good price, very nice amenities, updated interior, clean and spacious. So I don’t know what the fuss and low ratings for this place is for. And considering that we’ve stayed in at least 4 other hotels this year, I can say that we have a good idea of what decent accommodation entails.

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Christmas Eve was a cosy and quiet affair – just Grammy, T’s mom and the both of us. We had some spaghetti and meatballs, opened some presents, ate cookies and cake, then watched tv.

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On Christmas Day, we had brunch at his Aunt Kathy’s house (I also met his cousin Ray and his wife Sveva, who are doctors who live in Maine, for the first time) then we drove over 4 hours across upstate New York to Cato, near Syracuse, where T’s mom recently bought a house. One woman, 9 acres of land and a 3 bedroom house. Gulp! We spent another 2 nights there with her – a quiet Christmas dinner after a long day of driving, then the next day she showed us around her new hometown. We also went to her favourite junk shop – Ruby’s Antiques and Gifts. You see, as a retired nurse, she has a lot of time on her hands and she’s always itching to create and fix things up. Most of the furniture in her house were bought and refinished by herself. And other than gardening, she loves thrifting.

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Our last visit with T’s east coast family is another 3+hours drive away in the Adirondack region. His mother’s brother Uncle Joe owns 100 acres of land there and has recently added a huge mansion they custom built. They had an existing cabin which they use as a weekend retreat and hunting lodge for years. We had such a nice time with even more family – his cousin Patty’s family (husband and 3 kids) were there from Massachusetts too.

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And because the main house isn’t all completed yet, there wasn’t enough space to house all of us, we got to spend 2 nights in the cabin!! I thought it was a bit exciting and a bit scary all at once but I’m so glad we had the opportunity. I’m actually alright sleeping anywhere as long as I can take a hot shower and wash my hair in the morning after I get up. But a hunting cabin in the woods is pretty darn cool!

And that was our Christmas in New York. My favourite part about Christmas is family, then maybe followed closely by the feasting hahaha…

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