Author Topic: Household Skills Project Mk 3  (Read 23306 times)

Offline CeresIn

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: Updated 10-12 August
« Reply #100 on: September 03, 2016, 01:27:11 PM »
I'm hooked on this project and I think it's one that I will try to do when I can complete at least one dynasty challenge. I like to see the family through the various houses and new skills. :)

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: Updated 10-12 August
« Reply #101 on: September 03, 2016, 04:35:43 PM »
Thanks for commenting :).  I'd like to see someone else trying the challenge - I was beginning to wonder whether I was doing it entirely for my own amusement.  In fairness, it has been going on for a heck of a long time and I do keep getting distracted by shorter-term projects.  I'm still enjoying playing it, although I sometimes wish I wasn't so determined to build most of the houses :P.

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Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #102 on: January 08, 2017, 09:28:02 AM »
They’re back again!  And with some extra expansions – I’ve now switched on everything except ITF.  Seasons are set at 7 days for this town, with all weather enabled, although the moon phase is fixed at waxing gibbous.  Pets and celebrities are switched on, horses and all supernaturals apart from vampires are off.

House 15

Sybil had always felt that her true mission in life was to run a small hotel.  However, when she arrived in Bridgeport, there didn’t seem to be any for sale (or any hotels at all, as far as she could see).  Instead, she settled for the next best thing – an old pub in the hills above the town.


Of course, she didn’t actually know how to make any drinks but that was easy to fix.  She headed off to the library to read a mixology book and then hit the bars by way of research.


She managed to talk one bouncer into letting her through.  In fact, he seemed to fancy her – while she was sitting sipping her drink, he left his post and joined her at the bar.  But she couldn’t rely on charming her way past all of them.  If she was going to research the higher-class establishments, she'd have to become a celebrity.


With her first star achieved, she returned home and practised mixing drinks.


Life went on quietly for a few days, working on her mixology skill, schmoozing celebrities and telling fortunes.  But time was ticking on: she was more than halfway through young adulthood and she was still single.  She’d been very much attracted to Alexander French, the bartender at Eugi’s, but he never came over to visit when she invited him.  His long work shifts were bad enough but, even when she called first thing in the morning, he promised to come over at once but never arrived.  He didn’t even turn up to her parties, despite her legendary host status.  In desperation, she threw a party with Alex as the only guest.  He arrived but left almost immediately :(.  But then, miraculously, he was able to visit – at any time.  It turned out to be because he’d lost his job (but I’m still going to count him as a mixologist NPC).  Now that they were finally able to chat properly, they quickly became best friends, helped by their shared sense of humour.


Sybil asked Alex to move in…


…and he inexplicably left again  >:(.  The following day, she had one last try (I was almost ready to settle for the postman instead) and they became housemates.


I took Alex to the dresser for some new clothes and to the mirror to get a better look at his face.  Hmm, maybe it’s not just the women in Bridgeport who go in for surgical enhancement.  Those features look a bit doll-like to me.

Life settled into a pleasant routine.  Sybil cooked, worked on her mixology skill and made mystical pronouncements in the gypsy caravan up the road (although she’d now reached the point where her work shifts were short enough to make her progress through the career quite slow).  Alex, with his mixology skill already maxed, concentrated on playing the bass and fixing the plumbing.


And their relationship progressed rapidly from friendship to romance.


When Sybil proposed marriage, Alex was happy to accept.


She was delighted.  He looked more calculating, as though the effect on his celebrity status meant more than marrying the woman he supposedly loved.


OK, maybe I misjudged him.


Their wedding was a disaster.  To start with, I somehow managed to select ‘house party’ instead of ‘wedding party’.  Never mind – they could still get married.  But the guests weren’t cooperative.  Fights and arguments kept breaking out, distracting the bride and groom from their vows.


Then the bride had a birthday – and a midlife crisis.


Another two or three attempts to hold the ceremony were disrupted by the guests.  Alex looked ready to join his fiancée in her crisis, even though he was still a young adult.


Then he snapped.  Careless of the possible effect on his celebrity status and lifetime wish (which he’d recently changed to Lifestyle of the Rich and Famous), he sent everyone home.


Poor Sybil was distraught.  Not exactly her dream wedding.


But then Alex made everything better.  Who needed guests and an archway?  They had each other.



By the time they were husband and wife, it was after 3am and they were both too exhausted to do anything other than fall into bed and pass out.  The ‘wedding night’ actually happened in the early afternoon, when they’d both recovered.



Chimes first time!  Well, they deserved some luck.  Sybil’s new Simmunity suppressed any morning sickness, so the first she knew of her impending motherhood was an unexpected change of outdoor clothing while she was at the library.


Sybil wanted a boy; Alex, a girl.  I left it up to chance but tried to encourage multiples in the hope that they’d both get their wishes.  Sybil wasn’t having any – either that or she just couldn’t stand the kids’ channel.  She kept turning off the TV or simply walking away.

Alex was as helpful as most Sim fathers, so Sybil and I sent him off to have a snack and then play his bass, safely out of the way.


Sybil’s resistance to my efforts paid off (for her) – there was only one baby and it was the son that she’d wanted.  They named him Oscar.  No prizes for guessing which career he’s headed for  ;).

Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: Updated 8 January
« Reply #103 on: January 08, 2017, 04:34:46 PM »
Sybil had always felt that her true mission in life was to run a small hotel.

:D :D Although wasn't it Basil's dream?

Welcome, Oscar!

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 14 January
« Reply #104 on: January 14, 2017, 10:10:55 AM »
Although wasn't it Basil's dream?

I'm sure he'd have preferred something much classier ;).


Oscar had his first birthday – and Faylene’s hair is still going strong, twelve generations on.


He learned his toddler skills quickly and was also taken to the library to read the three writing books but still had plenty of time for playing with his special doll and Bafta, the Awards Season Bear.


That particular IF doll disconcerted me more than they usually do – not only did it look exactly like Riley but it was actually called Riley by default.  One of him was quite enough.  Oscar and I decided this one should be a girl instead and named her Twinkle, after his favourite nursery rhyme.

Alex took advantage of one of Sybil’s days off to head into own and play the bass for tips, in the hope of boosting his celebrity status.  The money part of his wish had never been a problem and he was now a four-star celeb, so I was hoping that a day of performing in the city might complete his LTW.


It didn’t work.  Nobody came over to watch, so he sat and chatted to the barman instead and picked up a couple of new drink recipes.  After a while, Matthew Hamming, looking unrecognisable (to me, anyway) as an elder, came in and they got into conversation.


Alex was within a whisker of his fifth star when they were kicked out because it was closing time.  They must have carried on talking in the lift and on their way out because the lifetime wish music played while I had the camera outside waiting for them to reappear.


Oscar had another birthday…



…and Twinkle changed from an inanimate doll into a proper imaginary friend.


Oscar seemed a little disconcerted to start with but soon started telling her all about his theatrical dreams.


They spent the rest of the day playing together.


(That doesn’t seem like the safest location for a game of tag  ???.)

That night, there was a burglary, the second since the family had moved to Bridgeport.


The first time, the burglar had beaten the policeman to a pulp and got away.  This one was obviously less fit.


While the policeman was busy congratulating himself on the arrest and being all excited about meeting Sybil, Oscar gave Twinkle a potion he’d found in an old chest in the attic…



…and she became a real girl.


Appropriately, Twinkle has star quality.  She’s also evil and has a photographer’s eye.

Becoming real wasn’t an entirely happy experience – now she’d have to go to school.  A kid with purple hair and called Twinkle was just asking to be bullied.  She went to Sybil for help.


“Well, you could always dye your hair but you’ll have to wait until you’re older to change your name by deed poll.  I’m not allowed to change it for you because you’re not my child.  I think you’ll be better off at a school where they’ll value your individuality and your name won’t seem so odd.”

And so Twinkle went off to Smuggsworth.


To add to her problems, she’d been in the middle of a joyride on the sofa when the car appeared and was still wearing her crash helmet and goggles when she left.  At least she got to travel by limo – although I have a nasty feeling that that would be regarded as terribly ostentatious and nouveau riche.  Oh well.


(Also, that’s a really strangely shaped stretch of road.)


With both their own child and the unexpected extra one at school, Sybil and Alex had more time for themselves.  Alex became a Legendary Musician.


He reached level ten almost entirely by playing for tips,  I’m intending to play with bands properly while the Haskills are in Bridgeport but I wanted someone to max the career first.

The following day, Sybil, with the help of basil* from their storage chests, became a Master of Mysticism.  She was quite overcome with emotion.  Maybe it’s her dramatic trait.


She and Alex decided to add to their family while they still could.


Their daughter was born in the living room…


…and was followed by another son as soon as she'd been tucked up in her cot.  Alex, who was still holding his ‘have a girl’ wish and had wanted a boy this time, was very happy.


So was Sybil.  A third baby had appeared in the living room.  She’d outwitted me again.

*  Basil actually helping Sybil?  :o

Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: Updated 8 January
« Reply #105 on: January 14, 2017, 11:55:50 AM »
Oscar had his first birthday – and Faylene’s hair is still going strong, twelve generations on.

Wow, those are some strong genes!

That particular IF doll disconcerted me more than they usually do – not only did it look exactly like Riley but it was actually called Riley by default.  One of him was quite enough.

Poooooor Riley :( And poor Twinkle - what a name  ;D

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #106 on: January 21, 2017, 02:11:26 PM »

The triplets became toddlers and Oscar aged up to teen just in time to help with teaching them their basic skills.  Every young boy’s dream  ???.



Twinkle, wisely, stayed at Smuggsworth.

Considering that the next heir’s inevitably going to be one of the younger kids, I was slightly disconcerted that the triplets all grew up to be, shall we say, distinctive-looking toddlers.


                                                                                                                  From left to right, Margarita, Roger and Vlad

Possibly because of all the recent practice on the short lifespan, the toddlers were fully trained in a matter of days and everyone had a bit of a break before they grew up some more.


The living space over the pub was now clearly much too small.  The builders were called in and a single-storey extension constructed for the boys’ bedrooms.  Margarita had the old nursery: the pale-blue colour scheme suited her tastes, although she added some frosty touches of her own.


Vlad was already in love with all things gothic and tried to pretend that his room was in a gloomy basement, rather than being part of a new, well-lit, ground floor extension on a tall foundation.


Roger’s tastes weren’t as well defined yet.  He just knew he liked purple and pop.


Oscar might have hoped that the little kids getting older would make his life easier.  Wrong.




Whenever he could, he retreated to his room and his writing.  He’d written one mildly successful book as a child and was keen to progress.


Sybil and then Alex had their final birthdays.  They didn’t let old age and creaky joints get in the way of romance.


Oscar became a young adult (and acquired the ‘dislikes children’ trait, to no-one’s surprise)…


…and Twinkle finally came home.  She and Oscar were still best friends and now seemed likely to become rather more.



Twinkle had grown up into a predictably attractive (if clone-faced) young woman and was keen to ditch her childish name.  Unfortunately, a few things got in the way.  First there was Oscar’s graduation and then a mad dash to get the triplets up to the required standard before their next birthday, a few hours later.  It had been a remarkably snowy winter and they’d only had two days of schooling.  Vlad, who’d been asked to take some papers to the town hall, was fine but the other two were in danger of failing.  Fortunately, Twinkle had come back from Smuggsworth with level 6 logic, as well as an array of lesser skills.  While Alex tutored Margarita (definitely his favourite child), Twinkle sat down in the snow outside the town hall and taught Roger.  With, ooh, all of half an hour to spare, the remaining triplets reached A grades and were able to choose their teen traits.

Margarita and Roger stuck with developments of their childhood looks (although Roger, a would-be teen movie star, was likely to be asked to totally rethink his image at any moment).


Vlad, on the other hand, went all-out goth, had his ears pierced and dyed his hair.

The next morning, Twinkle managed to sneak away and change her name.  Then Astara Haskill, product of the most exclusive private school in the Simverse, signed up as an actress with Plumbbob Pictures.  (Obviously, this had nothing whatsoever to do with the local school’s star pupil being taken on as a fledgeling director a few minutes earlier.)

Margarita settled straight into her chosen specialist subject.  The boys might be moaning about clubs, jobs and homework; she knew that getting a head start on her lifetime wish was time well spent.



Sadly, it wasn’t long before she was interrupted anyway.  Sybil only just made it to the end of the normal lifespan.



She seemed happy enough to go, though.  After all, she had left four kids well set up to continue the Haskill line.

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Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: Updated 8 January
« Reply #107 on: January 21, 2017, 02:23:16 PM »
I was slightly disconcerted that the triplets all grew up to be, shall we say, distinctive-looking toddlers.

Wow. Yep, they certainly did.

(Obviously, this had nothing whatsoever to do with the local school’s star pupil being taken on as a fledgeling director a few minutes earlier.)

Glad to hear it  ;D

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #108 on: January 24, 2017, 05:19:13 PM »
Vlad’s gothic period continued.  He became completely obsessed with The Vampire Blogs.  The family had three copies and they all kept ending up in his inventory however many times I put them away.  Then he ran into Jessica Talon around town and they became good friends.


Nice to see him cooperating so well with my evil plans  ;).  I was hoping he could ask Jessica to turn him but the option didn’t seem to be there.  Must be an adults-only thing.  Still, there were other options.

Vlad found himself irresistibly compelled to go up to the attic and explore the contents of the two old chests in the corner.  There was a flask full of red liquid in one, labelled ‘Bottled Vampire’s Bite’.




He helped himself to a handful of vampiric sunscreens as well. They might come in handy, even though the weather in Bridgeport was permanently awful.

A few days later, the triplets grew up.  I’d never noticed before that vampires have red birthday sparkles :).


Vlad went back to his natural colouring: being a vampire was quite gothic enough without added hair dye.


Margarita was almost unchanged; just a little taller.


And Roger…


Roger aged up without his curls but more seriously, developed a clipping blemish on his chin.  It was probably just as well he’d given up his part-time film career.  I considered hiding it with a full beard but he looked ridiculous.  Well, differently ridiculous.  In the end, I settled for enough beard to distract attention from his skin problem without actually covering it.


Vlad graduated as valedictorian and celebrated with his first hunt.  At the library in broad daylight but, hey, he’d given up on all of that dark and brooding stuff.


And Skillz played their first gig.  Alex’s old band, The Meteorites (the default name but it seemed very appropriate for my Sims) had ceased to be along with Romeo Rake, its only other member.  Since the triplets were all learning instruments, Alex had asked them whether they’d like to form a new one.


Slightly unconventional clothing for rockers but, since nobody bothered to turn up and watch, it probably didn’t matter.

That’s Margarita lurking behind the piano, by the way:


The game settled into one of those quiet periods.  Oscar and Astara went to work at the film studio and became boyfriend and girlfriend…


Margarita mixed drinks and became a Master of Mood…


…and Vlad, fuelled by plasma juice, stayed up late practising the guitar.

I was disappointed by Vlad’s skilling rate, by the way.  I was glad I’d given him virtuoso as his final trait.  Even with that, his sister’s skill gain drinks and Chinese incense, the supposedly fast vampire skilling wasn’t exactly startling.  The bats circling around his learning bar were pretty cool, though.


Roger wasn’t allowed to do much.  Alex had completed two of the three bass challenges but hadn’t had a single opportunity (although he turned down loads for mixology).  I was trying to supermax with Roger but wasn’t hopeful after Dorian.  Although maybe some of the Late Night opportunities needed Bridgeport.  That would make a kind of sense.  So Roger played with the band, practised bass occasionally and mostly played with the VR goggles.


About halfway through the triplets’ young adulthood, it became clear that my current strategy (such as it was) wasn’t working.  Oscar and Astara were full adults and still only at level four of their careers and Margarita was the only one who was making significant progress on her lifetime wish (the supermax, not so much).  So the Filmic Two cashed in some happiness points for nerd influence and became workaholics - and both immediately got their first career opportunities, which must have been coincidence but seemed eerily apt.


Roger, who’d only had one bass opportunity, was allowed to give up all hope of a supermax and learn charisma.  He met Jun Xu at the library just after hitting level six and she became the first notch on his bedpost.  (Well, actually, it was Oscar’s bed and doesn’t have posts but let’s not quibble.)


Alex died.  I don’t really know how old he was because I’d given up on the regular daily checks – he seemed to have been around forever.  He was certainly well past a hundred.


And the band played on.  I’d have thought losing a member would make the opportunities less frequent but it seemed to have just the opposite effect – they even had two gigs in the same day.


Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #109 on: January 24, 2017, 05:28:45 PM »
Margarita ventured out into the city’s bars in search of new recipes and chances to moonlight as a mixologist.  It didn’t go well.


Happy Hour was most certainly over.  In the other bar at the Bridgeport Sports Zone, this was happening:


In fact, for a while it seemed as though every time Margarita walked into a bar, the resident mixologist keeled over.  She went back home and worked on Poseidon instead.

Vlad, who was now close to maxing both guitar and bass, decided to concentrate on his bloodthirsty side…


…and Oscar surprised me by becoming a Distinguished Director a couple of days before I’d expected it.


He’d been lucky with the opportunities recently and had a boss who was very amenable to out-of-hours promotions but it was still a surprise – hence the missed screenshot.  Astara, whose boss was a mean-spirited, child-hating grump, was never going to get any early promotions and had only just reached level 8, even though she’d been ahead for most of their careers.

Roger WooHooed with several more inhabitants of Bridgeport (plus a few return matches with Jun Xu).  He had a definite preference for vampires as romantic partners.  Maybe he liked living dangerously.


Vlad also had a daredevil streak.  It was just as well Sev and Sybil had made so much vampiric sunscreen – he definitely preferred practising his music in the great outdoors.


Two out of the three triplets had their adult birthdays and began midlife crises (and Roger lost his curls again)…



…while the third drank from his twentieth victim…



…achieved his lifetime wish and became immortal.

Vlad moved out into the Sugar Cube, down the hill from the family home.  A luxurious one-bedroom house was just the thing for a rich, successful young vampire in search of further conquests.

I must play more with vampires.  I thoroughly enjoyed pursuing his LTW, despite the celebrity disgraces.  (Incidentally, isn’t it a little hypocritical that his vampire friends were among the loudest in decrying his biting habits?)

Inspired by his brother's success, Roger lured the elderly merman Richie Striker into the bathroom at the fire station and completed his own lifetime wish.


He looked quite insufferably smug.


Now all he had to do was get that last half-point of bass skill and then he’d be able to move into a penthouse and really live it up.

As often seems to happen, the game was suddenly rushing towards the next house move.  Oscar proposed to Astara…


…and Margarita celebrated becoming a Professor of Drinks by dancing on the bar.  She’d been trying to do it for ages and I’d kept cancelling the action.  By the way, why is it that drinking a Crazy Drink replaces her party animal trait (always with daredevil, I think)?  You’d expect it to go for something more mundane instead.


She’d now completed four out of five mixology challenges but Master Mixologist looked to be completely out of reach.  Just getting to a bar to moonlight often took five or six attempts – and she'd often stop bartending almost as soon as she’d started.  On top of that, the counter for the challlenge is completely bugged.  I know she’s nowhere near serving 60 drinks but she must be somewhere over twenty, while the counter has just reluctantly ticked over from three patrons served to five.  Another supermax out of reach :(.

(I’m almost convinced that I’ll have to play a side game after this, with only the base game and Late Night and try to knock out the missing supermaxes.)

Almost a week after Oscar, Astara maxed the film career.  She looked exhausted by the effort.


(Yeah, I pretty much missed another screenshot, even though I was lying in wait outside the studio.)

After a good night’s sleep, she and Oscar finally tied the knot, in a private ceremony in their old favourite tag location.



I’d been intending Roger to be the next heir but he’s too annoying.  Some evil Sims, like Damien, are real sweeties under the surface.  Roger’s just a git.  On the other hand, I’ve grown really fond of Margarita.  As the only triplet without the virtuoso trait, she’s not the obvious candidate to establish yet another musical household.  But then she has loads of spare LTHPs floating around and I don’t really need to keep all three social group influences as unique rewards.  So Margarita became a level eight rebel and, rather late in life, a virtuoso.  She phoned the estate agency…


… put in an offer for the Banzai Lounge…


…and completed her lifetime wish.

The film career rewards (guarded by Bafta) were left behind at the old house.


Oscar and Astara, both of whom have level ten mixology, were also left behind.  Maybe they’ll retire and run the pub together.  On the other hand, they are both workaholics now, so maybe not.

Margarita left her childhood home…


…and, like Roger, drove across the bridge into the city…


…in pursuit of both her midlife-crisis wish to move house and a longer-standing one to live in a penthouse.


House 15 summary
Skills: mixology and bass

Career: Fortune Teller (Mystic)
LTW: Master of Mysticism
Level 10 alchemy, photography, charisma and mixology

(Traits: good sense of humour, flirty, neat, heavy sleeper, mooch)
Career: Band
LTW: Lifestyle of the Rich and Famous
Level 10 mixology, bass (plus two challenges) and handiness (plus two challenges).

Traits: artistic, neurotic, bookworm, star quality, dislikes children
Career: Film (Directing)
LTW: Distinguished Director
Level 10 mixology

Life state: imaginary friend
Traits: star quality, photographer’s eye, evil, charismatic, snob)
Career: Film (Acting)
LTW: Superstar Actor
Level 10 mixology
Attended Smuggsworth Prep School

Traits: friendly, excitable, party animal, night owl, loves the cold (+ virtuoso - from rebel influence)
LTW: Master Mixologist
Level 10 mixology (plus four challenges)
Building/property: Banzai Lounge
Unique rewards: Better Mixologist, Watering Hole Regular

Traits: evil, virtuoso, lucky, flirty, commitment issues
Career: film (part-time)
LTW: Master Romancer
Level 10 bass

Life state: became a vampire
Traits: perceptive, heavy sleeper, night owl, charismatic, virtuoso
LTW: Turn the Town
Level 10 bass and guitar

Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: double update 24 Jan
« Reply #110 on: January 25, 2017, 02:16:06 PM »
(Incidentally, isn’t it a little hypocritical that his vampire friends were among the loudest in decrying his biting habits?)

Depends. Are they the nauseating nice sparkly variety of vampire that go to high school and dine only on mountain lions?

I like Bafta guarding the awards. Shame he (she?) couldn't sit on the chair, though.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: double update 24 Jan
« Reply #111 on: January 25, 2017, 03:19:36 PM »
(Incidentally, isn’t it a little hypocritical that his vampire friends were among the loudest in decrying his biting habits?)

Depends. Are they the nauseating nice sparkly variety of vampire that go to high school and dine only on mountain lions?

Most of the Bridgeport vampires look pretty scary to me.  Although, come to think of it, I've only seen them eating plasma fruit and drinking juice, so maybe theyre scary vegetarian vampires.

I like Bafta guarding the awards. Shame he (she?) couldn't sit on the chair, though.

I think Bafta's a he.  There is a mod that lets teddies sit on furniture.  I keep meaning to try it - I hate them always being stuck on the floor.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #112 on: January 28, 2017, 10:05:03 AM »
House 16

Margarita moved into the penthouse at One Leo Center, once occupied by the Joneses.


(It’s the brownish-grey building just to the left of centre in that screenshot.)  It has two bedrooms but is still a bit on the small size for raising a family and skilling, so I converted the two hidden rooms behind the lower floor into normal rooms and added a professional bar to one of them.  The other’s empty for now.

With the apartment redecorated to suit her tastes, Margarita went out husband-hunting.  She and I had been looking for a bouncer as the next spouse and we thought we’d found a suitable candidate in Tim Mena, who made a brief appearance in the last chapter helping Vlad to achieve his lifetime wish.  However, Tim was now an elder and we’d prefer someone younger.

After a whistle-stop tour of most of the bars in town, Margarita wound up at the Brightmore and found they’d hired a new bouncer since her last visit.


His name was Leo (“Just like my new house!”) and Rita fancied him at first sight.


Once they got chatting, it quickly became clear that the hardman bouncer had a soft centre: he was over-emotional and loved photography.


(Actually, most of the bouncers seemed to be softies – an astonishing proportion were nurturing, which doesn’t seem like an obvious trait for the job.)

They talked until closing time and then, early the following morning, Margarita invited him over and asked him to move in.


She didn’t hang about.  Leo just had time for a quick makeover…


…and then she made a move.


Several moves.


There were chimes before lunchtime.

While she could still fit into her normal clothes, they had a date on what passes for a beach around Bridgeport, ending with a rather soggy proposal.


Leo had arrived with a Law Enforcement LTW :).  Unfortunately, it was International Super Spy, which Solomon had done back in Sunlit Tides.  On the other hand, he should have the happiness points to change it long before he reached the branching point.  Getting through his career might be a bit tough – he was already halfway through adulthood and the work shifts are short in Bridgeport – but ought to be doable.

While Leo was concentrating on his career, Margarita concentrated on the new Haskill-to-be, visiting the spa for their most expensive package and reading parenting books at the library.  While she was there, she ran into her big brother and sister-in-law.  Oscar was looking shockingly old, while Astara, curiously, was as youthful as ever.


For the first time, the Haskills engaged domestic staff, in the shape of Maya Robles, butler.  I’ve only played with a butler once before but quickly got fed up because of the amount of food he cooked that just went to waste.  With a chef’s fridge, though, having a butler for a short time to get it thoroughly stocked seemed like a good idea.

I’m pretty sure Mr Hudson would disapprove of Maya’s make up.  He wouldn’t think much of her job performance, either.  When asked directly, she’d produce decent meals (I think butlers must have been patched) but she did nothing else at all.  She mostly sat around watching the TV.  And she had an insatiable thirst.  Every time Margarita mixed up a batch of skill gain drinks for Leo, or romantic drinks for a special evening à deux,  Maya would drink the lot.


After the usual interval, Rita went into labour (and the tough ex-bouncer had a panic attack).


It was a boy.


Is it just me or does he look worried in the right-hand screenshot?  (No, he’s not neurotic.)

The new parents had a private and not-very-romantic wedding out on the balcony.



(That sticky-out-thing looks downright dangerous.  It’s a good thing it ceases to exist with the walls down.)

Possibly unwisely, they left Maya in charge of baby Nick and went in search of prettier screenshots to visit Rita’s childhood haunts in the hills above the city.


The date nearly had to be cut short because Nick’s portrait had gone red and he looked to be getting dangerously close to the point where the social worker would turn up.  But then, surprisingly, Maya collected her money and left.  She was replaced by Geoffrey George, who couldn’t have been more different.  Not only did he buttle brilliantly, he was amazing with babies.


Instead of rushing home, the newlyweds extended their date, with visits to the cinema, a restaurant and a couple of clubs and didn’t get back until dawn.

Skillz hadn’t played a gig in ages but suddenly were offered their first spot at the Banzai Lounge.


Not sure Roger got the memo about formal dress :P.

Nick had his first birthday.


(Under the hat, he’s yet another Haskill redhead.)


Geoffrey the Wonder Butler remained his primary carer, although his parents taught him his skills…


…mostly in the lobby for some unknown reason.  At least they didn’t take the potty down there – and it did give me the chance to see the best random Sim name ever :D.


Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 28 Jan
« Reply #113 on: January 28, 2017, 12:24:41 PM »
German Shepherd :D Wow ;D Any way he can join your household?

Is the lighting funny in that picture of Skillz playing, or is that a weird mouldy variant of the hot dog costume?

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #114 on: January 30, 2017, 01:49:00 PM »
German Shepherd :D Wow ;D Any way he can join your household?

Not without breaking the rules, no :(.  And I'm not sure he'd be able to, anyway - paparazzi don't seem to behave quite like other NPCs.

Is the lighting funny in that picture of Skillz playing, or is that a weird mouldy variant of the hot dog costume?

It's the stage lights: they mostly seem to be green.  Not at all flattering.  Especially to hot dogs.

Nick had a birthday…


…and Margarita discovered that she was having another baby.


The following day, Geoffrey the butler took his money and left.  They must only stay for a week.  I really miss him.  On the other hand, Margarita had been learning cooking and handiness and their family life was quietening down a little.  She called for services and cancelled the butler.  Despite that, half an hour later Useless Maya turned up again and had to be sacked :(.

Leo was now an elder but wasn’t making much progress with his career, so, like Oscar and Astara, he bought enough social group influence to become a workaholic.  (This is getting a little boring.)

Margarita spent most of her pregnancy playing the drums.  Early exposure to music seems like a good idea for this child – provided that the poor thing isn’t deafened in the womb.  A few hours before she was due to go into labour, she reached level 10.


While she stood panting in front of her mixology certificate (possibly wondering why it’s OK for pregnant Sims to drink cocktails but not ‘nectar’ or ‘juice’ and why no-one was bringing her a large one right now)…


…Leo took refuge in music.


Perhaps the baby found the drumming from the next room reassuring – and it did drown out all those weird noises that Mummy was making.

And it’s a girl!  Welcome, Cecilia.


Leo celebrated his daughter’s arrival by maxing the drums skill.  As you do.


Margarita’s birthday had been delayed by her pregnancy.  Becoming an elder was clearly a shock.


“Mum?  Are you all right?  Mum?  Mum!”


The children shared a birthday.  Nick became a teen and looked more than ever like his Uncle Roger, while Cecilia became a toddler.   Both kids have inherited Leo’s eye colour; Cecilia’s also got his hair, which isn’t black as I’d thought but the same dark greenish-brown that Blake had, until he dyed it to a proper brown as a teenager.  I think she will be doing the same.

This time, Margarita managed to teach all of the toddler skills without a single trip in the lift.


Cecilia was the first kid since Late Night was switched on to be allowed to play with the xylophone.


Clearly a star in the making.  She looks as though she’s already practising acknowledging the applause  ;).

On the day that Cecilia was due to age up to child, Leo finally reached the top of the forensic career.  And not before time – he was 87.


Margarita took advantage of their newly fireproofed house to buy her daughter this generation's first birthday cake.


Cecilia became a snob and insisted on wearing her school uniform, even though no-one else in town bothered...


...and immediately demanded a dressing-up box...


...before Presiding Over the Royal Court for the first of many times.  She's going to be a proper little madam.

All of the gnomes have been in the family inventory for the last few houses, because I got fed up of having to disassemble the garden before each move to find the ones that were hiding in the shrubbery.  Apparently that doesn’t stop them ageing.   I’d noticed when I was looking in the inventory that the Mysterious Mr Gnome someone brought home from a school trip to the mausoleum in the previous household had got old and then found this on the pavement outside their building :(.


Even in death, it seems gnomes can teleport.

Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 30 Jan
« Reply #115 on: January 30, 2017, 03:40:53 PM »
Is it weird that the major comment I want to make is how much I love Cecilia's socks? And Leo maxing the drum skill, obviously :D

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #116 on: February 02, 2017, 03:27:36 PM »
Is it weird that the major comment I want to make is how much I love Cecilia's socks?

Doesn't seem weird to me.  The main reason I posted that full-length picture is because I was ridiculously pleased with her socks :)


With all of their requirements completed, Margarita and Leo settled into enjoying whatever time they had left together.  It wasn’t retirement, exactly – as a workaholic, Leo was never going to retire voluntarily – but he was only working four afternoons a week at most (or three, if you counted time off for seasonal holidays).  That left plenty of time for fun.



It even left spare time for hobbies.  Leo maxed painting…


…and Rita got rather over-ambitious with the repairs.


Nick, who’d been on an A almost since becoming a teenager, had stayed at school for prom and to get onto the honour roll.  Now it was the weekend, he had a cake.  (The old man standing next to Cecilia is Geoffrey George.  He seems to have let himself go rather since retiring.)


Even before Nick had sorted out his new look, his mother asked him to join Skillz.


He accepted.


As a grown-up, Nick has slightly silly facial hair, like his Uncle Roger, and for precisely the same reason.

He celebrated no longer being subject to a curfew by visiting his mother’s childhood home.  I’d been hoping he could stay overnight with Oscar and Astara when he was younger – and maybe relieve them of a few valuables in the depths of the night.  Unfortunately, Rita wasn’t good enough friends with her eldest brother (and life in general was too hectic) for that too happen.  Now, sadly, the house was empty.  I’d had a notification about Astara’s death a couple of days before this but Margarita’s relationship with Oscar hadn’t even been that good.  He was gone but I don’t know when it happened :(.

Anyway, Nick drove up the hill to the Anchor Inn and got to work in the car park.


The following day he graduated as valedictorian and Most Likely to Get Arrested.  Can’t argue with that.  (Also, that’s the first new graduation ribbon in ages :D.)



A couple of days later, Nick finished stealing all of the cars parked outside the Anchor Inn.  What now?  He stole a few lights and statues from around Bridgeport but it wasn’t quite the same somehow.

The solution was obvious, really.  I have played through the Possession Is Nine-Tenths of the Law wish properly once (in a legacy that succumbed to bugs a generation later).  It took most of the Sim’s life and was a real pain.  For a family with pots of money, there’s an alternative.  If you’re so obscenely rich that losing a million or two doesn’t matter...  (For instance, f your watcher was stupid enough to let you move house without collecting the rents or selling off your properties first.  Just to take an example completely at random.  Ahem  :-[).  In that case, you can set up any house you might be about to move out of with a load of cars in the carpark – and buy it back as a second home when they’ve all been stolen, replace the cars and sell it again.


Nick visited the replenished parking space…


…and completed his lifetime wish, less than a week after his birthday.

Meanwhile, back in the family’s apartment, Cecilia slept peacefully, dreaming (as usual) of princesses.


She had an early cake on her teen birthday.  She was already comfortably on an A and getting a head start on her skills seemed like a good idea.


She chose school uniform again for her everyday outfit, of course.


She spent a pleasant day getting all of her instrument skills to level 3…


…until Leo left for work.  He didn’t even make it out of the building.


Happy birthday, kiddo  :'(.


Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 2 Feb
« Reply #117 on: February 02, 2017, 04:48:00 PM »
Poor Leo and Cecilia :( Congrats on getting Possession is Nine-Tenths Etc out of the way, though - I hate that one.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #118 on: February 05, 2017, 07:05:34 AM »
Poor Leo and Cecilia :( Congrats on getting Possession is Nine-Tenths Etc out of the way, though - I hate that one.

Me too.  It was one of the things I was least looking forward to in this game - although that cheaty way of doing it made it something of a non-event in the end.

It was another harsh winter, so Cecilia spent most of her first week as a teenager working on her musical skills at home. 


With his lifetime wish complete, Nick divided his time between lazing in the hot tub and chasing around Bridgeport in search of collectables, taking over one of Roger’s roles from the previous house.

Because I bought Late Night after Showtime, I’d never seen a will o’ the wisp until Wolfgang brought back a pink one from one of his hunts in Moonlight Falls.  Now, with the help of Shimrod’s mod to fix the spawners, Nick went after the other two.


Despite being considerably younger than her husband, Margarita only outlived him by a few days :'(.


Roger lived long enough for one more gig…


…but Skillz’ next performances were as a duo :(.


Nick seemed worried by spending so much time alone with a vampire (well, alone apart from the bartender and occasional audience member)…


…and I can’t really blame him.  Vlad can look pretty terrifying sometimes.


Cecilia spent hours in front of her dressing table sorting out her prom outfit…

65.Prom outfit.jpg

...but then went off in the limo in her outdoor clothes.  It was now spring but no-one had told the weather and it had just snowed again.  She was queen anyway but I can’t help feeling her photo would have looked better if she’d changed back into her dress when she’d arrived at the school.  (Maybe I should have followed her with the camera and insisted but I was concentrating on Nick at the time.)  She did get to wear it for her recital, so it wasn’t a complete waste of effort.


She was clearly thrilled.

As Cecilia’s young adult birthday approached, I realised I was going to have to rethink my plan again.  Nick had had two drum opportunities early on (which was one more than anyone had had for bass) but nothing since, even though I’d been keeping him from building his skill as quickly as he’d have liked and he had no others, apart from collecting and a single point in social networking from sneaking off and playing with his phone.  He could easily die of old age before getting Drum Star and I’d like Cecilia to move to the next town as a young adult.  So I abandoned the opportunities and let Nick play as much as he wanted.  There were a few hiccups, notably his drumkit becoming invisible.


Annoyingly, the same thing happened to a heart-cut pink diamond that I’d been hoarding for generations.  Neither of them became visible again, despite numerous resets and restarts, although the drumkit was definitely still there occupying most of the space in that room, and both siblings would occasionally play it autonomously.  I bought Nick a second set of drums for everyday use.

Cecilia was becoming a distinctly multi-skilled Sim.  She’d already taken up painting as well as her four instruments and now rolled a wish to learn photography.  Why not?  One of my background aims is to complete as many photo collections as possible but I’d been ignoring it recently.  She was on her way into a bar in pursuit of Nightlife shots (not looking at all suspiciously underage, honest) when the birthday sparkles hit.



She graduated as valedictorian and Most Likely to Become A Millionaire, which would probably have made her very happy if she’d not been a multi-millionaire already.


As soon as they were back home after the ceremony, Nick asked her to join Skillz.


Their performances were definitely getting showier…



…but the audiences were still largely absent.

Cecilia ran into Uncle Vlad while she was buying sheet music and started a jam session outside the bookshop.


That seemed to go down a lot better with the townspeople than any of their actual performances.  One of her old schoolfriends joined in and they made a few hundred in tips.

Most of her time, though, was spent at home with Nick, practising the drums.  My poor ears!


On Cecilia’s third day of young adulthood, Nick reached level ten…


…followed, almost exactly 24 hours later, by his younger sister.


Cecilia finished her packing and left the apartment for the last time.


She met up with Nick at the family plot in the graveyard…


…then hugged her brother goodbye and drove out of town.


I’d always felt that Bridgeport doesn’t really suit my usual playing style and I now think that’s right.  Certainly, bringing up even a small family in a penthouse was trying at times and there wasn’t much space for skilling.  Fair enough – that’s not really the type of game it was designed for, after all.  I’ll certainly go back later and play a more conventional band, with four members living in the same house and all learning their instruments together.  Maybe someone will be able to get Gig Master that way.  Margarita came the closest of the Sims in the active household, completing eight gigs.

I’m not sure whether it’s a bug or a feature but the game seemed to treat the apartment as a community lot, cleaning up the mess at 3am.  This was good from the point of view of keeping the house clean but a real nuisance when it also included drinks.  Margarita spent a significant chunk of her last day making perfect skill gain drinks and they all disappeared overnight :(.

House 16 summary
Skill: drums

Level 10 mixology and drums

(Traits: slob. loves the outdoors, good, over-emotional, photographer’s eye)
Career: Law Enforcement (Forensic)
LTW: Dynamic DNA Profiler
Level 10 drums and painting

Traits: loves the outdoors, virtuoso, kleptomaniac, mooch, night owl
LTW: Possession is Nine Tenths of the Law
Level 10 drums (plus 2 challenges)

Traits: artistic, virtuoso, snob, proper, diva
LTW to be finished in next house
Level 10 photography and drums
Building/property: Plumbob Pictures Backlot
Unique rewards: The Next Big Thing, Jetsetter
(I’m not sure whether Cecilia will ever travel, other than moving to the next town, but I’m almost certain she’d like to think of herself as a jetsetter :).)

The Late Night Collectables


Spider, termite, will o’ the wisps, skull cuts of smithsonite and vampire’s eye, and large ingots of carbon steel and tungsten carbide.  Collected by Roger and Nick, who both completed the metal- and gem-collecting challenges, and transfigured by Nick.

Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 5 Feb
« Reply #119 on: February 05, 2017, 06:21:13 PM »
RIP, Margarita and Roger :(

I didn't much like playing in Bridgeport either. Too many subways, funny shifts, and the lifts get in the way. Shame, when it looks so nice.

Odd about the automatic clean-up - I wish my apartment had that feature! Were you living above a bar or something?

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 5 Feb
« Reply #120 on: February 06, 2017, 12:55:00 PM »
I didn't much like playing in Bridgeport either. Too many subways, funny shifts, and the lifts get in the way. Shame, when it looks so nice.

The subways weren't too much of a problem once they all had cars in their inventories (I temporarily replaced the hot tub on the balcony with a parking space and doled them out).  Leo was a real pain until he got his police car, forever getting taxis to and from subway stations that were hardly any distance apart.  He'd have been far quicker walking.

Odd about the automatic clean-up - I wish my apartment had that feature! Were you living above a bar or something?

No, the lots are all either commercial or residential.  I'm not sure whether it was because of the public spaces: you can imagine that an automatic clean-up of the lobby and lifts would be a useful feature.  I thought at first that it was only happening in the rooms that had been hidden before I adopted them but then it occurred to me that their plumbing was staying remarkably clean without any upgrades - and Margarita's stockpiled skill gain drinks were all in the original apartment.  It might be a bug, of course - after only two generations and no travelling the game was getting pretty flaky.  I'll have to test it out with a new file sometime.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #121 on: February 10, 2017, 02:34:54 PM »
House 17

I had Midnight Hollow as a Christmas present, so there was never any doubt about where the Haskills would go next.  Cecilia moved into a very familiar-looking house, although it’s had a minor makeover, including darker colours on the outside.


Many of the community lots have been similarly toned down – even the junkyard looked glaringly bright compared with the local architecture ???.  I’ve added a few bars: Waylon’s has been imported from Bridgeport and plonked down right across the road from the Goole Haskill house.  Varg’s Tavern and the Red Velvet Lounge, which has been upgraded to a Late Night-style vampire lounge, have also been added and Midnight Hollow’s own Precarious Pub has become a local watering hole.

Cecilia had resigned from Skillz just before leaving Bridgeport and was now ready to form her own band.  Well, who could turn down the chance to play with David Bowie Ziggfield?


"Wow! He's dishy!"

Sorry, Cecy, he’s married.  And off-limits to you anyway.

Once she’d recruited two more members, she summoned everyone to the Gloomy Garden for a jam session/publicity exercise.


Ooh!  Now, he’s not off-limits.  That very pale (white?) skin and black-and-purple hair would be interesting additions to the family genetics.

Cecilia stopped playing and tried to strike up a conversation.  It was hard going, though.  Warren Delgado clearly preferred taking photos or making notes to actually getting to know the celebrity he was following.


Then he left the lot.  Very improperly, Cecilia chased after him (although she did pause to change into her formal outfit by way of compensation for her unladylike behaviour).


It looked for a while as though she was getting somewhere but then he started turning away after every sentence and the rest of her conversational actions would drop.  Talking for long enough to be able to ask him to move in was clearly out of the question :(.

As usual, the back-up plan was the postman.



By the end of Cecilia's second day in Midnight Hollow, Jamaal Kent was part of the household.


The postman’s cap must have Tardis-like properties – how did all of that hair fit under it?

Jamaal arrived with the Super Popular LTW, which no-one’s done yet, but, since he was still a young adult, he’d have plenty of time to get through a career – so he signed up as an organ donor, with a view to changing his wish to World-Renowned Surgeon once he’d saved up the points.


There was also time for their relationship to develop relatively slowly…


…although Cecilia wished to marry Jamaal as soon as they were romantic interests.


His bachelor party was more of a shared engagement do – most of the guests were Cecilia’s friends.


A small outbreak of wedding spam:



(Using the rugs from the Savvy Seller’s Collection wasn’t one of my cleverer ideas.  I thought they looked suitably bridal but the guests kept trying to buy the wedding arch  :P.)

The wedding party went on for most of the day but at last the newlyweds were alone together.


Cecilia realised she was pregnant in the middle of a performance by the band.


Fortunately, they were only jamming for tips rather than performing an official gig.  I’m pretty sure they’d have failed the opportunity if it had been a gig, just as Skillz had when a member of the audience very inconsiderately dropped dead in the middle of their set.  Cecilia abandoned her keyboards and ran across the road to tell Jamaal he was going to be a father.


Almost inevitably, she was playing again when she went into labour – practising the guitar in the basement party room...


...and Maxine was born onstage.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #122 on: February 11, 2017, 03:12:32 PM »
Maxine grew up into an even scarier-looking toddler than Vlad.


Perhaps that was why Cecilia took so little interest in her daughter.  Jamaal was besotted but so busy with his medical career that he had little time for being a hands-on dad.


Maxine largely taught herself her toddler skills, with some help from an unusually competent babysitter.


Cecilia, who was already pregnant with her second child, spent a lot of time being pampered at the day spa, when she wasn’t hanging out with the band.  She did have the odd fit of enthusiasm for all that motherly stuff but really didn’t have any talent for it  ::).


Maxine had her child birthday remarkably soon after her previous one.



She was still mildly terrifying as a child – and her slobby tendencies quickly became apparent.  Cecilia enrolled her in military school, hoping that her untidiness could be trained out.


At least the school uniform suited her.

Jamaal had a rare day off just before she was due to leave for Fort Starch, so they planned a family day out at the summer festival - which Cecilia ruined by going into labour about five minutes after they arrived.


While Jamaal drove his wife to the hospital, Maxine cycled home and spent the day playing with her toys instead  :(.


The new baby was a boy.  They named him Jonathan.


Maxine left for school the next morning while her parents were still asleep.  Jamaal had been called to deal with an emergency in the last hour of his supposed day off and Cecilia had been up most of the night with a fretful baby but I still felt sorry for the poor kid.


As a toddler, Jonathan looked a lot like his big sister at the same age.


(Out of curiosity, I aged Jamaal down in CAS and, yes, they’re his genes.  Jonathan is practically a clone.  I hadn’t noticed before how prominent Jamaal’s browline is.)

Jon was aged up even quicker than Maxine had been – he was only a toddler for a day.


(I have no idea why Cecilia’s doing that: worrying about the effect of all of those birthday cakes on her figure, maybe?)


She warmed a little towards Jon when she discovered he’d inherited her artistic nature…


…and even autonomously read him a bedtime story (although it was Commitment Issues  ::) )…


…but she still enrolled him in boarding school.  Le Fromage, naturally, to encourage his talents.

This time, the family day out worked better.  Jon had a great time, winning the pie-eating contest and collecting an autumn gnome (my first ever) on a trip through the haunted house.


But the next morning he too walked out through the big gates and set off for school  :(.


Soon after he’d moved in, Jamaal had found a dusty old lamp on a chest of drawers on the landing.


He’d given it a quick polish, with the usual results.



“There aren’t any… ghosts… here, are there?”
“Your house looks an awful lot like one my friend Deirdra was telling me about.  Full of ghosts.  I don’t like ghosts.”

Jamaal assured his new acquaintance that the house was ghost-free, carefully saying nothing about the Salas family just down the road.  He’d summoned the genie at intervals since then and they’d become close friends.  Now he made his final wish, carried out the rather mysterious tasks as instructed…


…and Asa Ott joined the household.


Asa, a computer whiz (what is it with genies and computers?) had the Blog Artist LTW when he arrived but seemed like the ideal Sim to do Paranormal Profiteer – he really does seem to be obsessed by ghosts, judging by his thought bubbles.

And, talking of lifetime wishes, a couple of days after Asa’s arrival, Cecilia maxed the bass skill and became my first One-Sim Band  :D.


Offline Alex

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 11 Feb
« Reply #123 on: February 11, 2017, 03:27:01 PM »
Wow, those are some very, um, interesting-looking kids you've got there :o Their eye colours are nice, though.

Did the Goole house always have those colourful kitchen tiles? So pretty!

I thought they looked suitably bridal but the guests kept trying to buy the wedding arch

*still giggling at mental image* Well, that's one way to pay for the wedding, I suppose.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #124 on: February 19, 2017, 09:43:20 AM »
Wow, those are some very, um, interesting-looking kids you've got there :o Their eye colours are nice, though.

Disconcerting, aren't they?  Those very blue eyes are from Jamaal; the violet ones are inherited from Leo.

Did the Goole house always have those colourful kitchen tiles? So pretty!

No, it had the same wall style but with black/grey/white tiles.  The kitchen was one of the rooms that had a complete makeover.  And thank you.  I'm rather fond of them myself :)

I thought they looked suitably bridal but the guests kept trying to buy the wedding arch

*still giggling at mental image* Well, that's one way to pay for the wedding, I suppose.

True ;).  It was a real pain, though.  There I was trying to get them married and the guests wouldn't get out of the way.

When I’ve sent Sim kids to boarding school before (admittedly, not all that often), they’ve essentially disappeared into limbo until their YA birthdays.  Maxine’s time at Fort Starch was quite different – a succession of pop-ups kept me informed about her progress.


Although I think the military may have bigger problems than their financial errors if they can’t even keep track of their students’ identities :P.

Jonathan, who had a weekend birthday, came home for a couple of days of driving lessons and intensive skilling.  Like great-uncle Vlad, he took the chance to poke around in the storage chests…


…and turned himself into a witch.  He had a few hours to practise spellcasting before returning to Le Fromage.


Cecilia had another baby (on their private stage, again).


Like his older siblings, Tom was taught his toddler skills at top speed, had an early cake…


…and was packed off to boarding school.


His parents were busy.  Jamaal was progressing fairly slowly through the medical career, because he was holding clinics and visiting rabbitholes as often as possible.  He was also following up most work shifts with home visits, because I was trying to get the service award for forty diagnoses for the first time.


And finally, more than five weeks after moving to Midnight Hollow, Cecilia made a start on the skill for this house.


Winter had arrived (I’m changing the seasons to suit myself this time) but the paparazzi didn’t seem to have noticed.


You’d think a doctor would have more sense, but no:


Asa’s career was going well...


…and he reached level ten a day after Jamaal.



Maxine returned home from Fort Starch.


Somehow, despite her success in the bunk inspection contest, she was still a slob.  A disciplined slob, which boggles my brain rather.  She turned out better-looking than I’d expected.


The following day, she was off again, for a single week at university with a minimal class load.  The aim was to max nerd influence and maybe also work on the other two social groups.  She didn’t do quite as well as I’d hoped, largely because I forgot to pack a motive mobile in her inventory.  She was only at level 8½ by the end of the week but used happiness points to buy her way to the top and took a job in video game creation.

Cecilia celebrated her eldest child reaching young adulthood by producing another one.  (After all, she’s such a great mother ::).)


Davina will definitely be the final member of the family – her birth slightly delayed Cecilia’s elder birthday.


And yet again, Jamaal’s scary features win out over Cecilia’s rather attractive ones :(


Jon graduated from art school and like Maxine, immediately left for uni.  He did rather better, largely because he had a moodlet manager, and maxed his rebel influence in a matter of days.  Unsurprisingly, he took a job in art appraisal.


Again, he’s grown up pretty well.

Jamaal took possession of the moodlet manager and spent his nights sculpting instead of sleeping.  To my surprise, he produced a gnome almost immediately.  (That’s only my second sculpting gnome, even though sculpting is one of my favourite skills.)


Even more astonishingly, Cecilia made another a few hours later.


Her next sculpture took her to level ten.


Jamaal and Asa weren't far behind, although I didn’t do too well with the screenshots – I had the camera somewhere else when Asa maxed the skill and the numbers over Jamaal’s head were mostly lost in a block of clay.


Even though the kids have mostly been away at school, this is turning out to be the most demanding house so far, not helped by increasing bugginess over the last couple of weeks.  It’s the first time in ages that I’ve had Error 12s.  It’s a good job the game is still cheering me up with its random names :D: