Author Topic: Household Skills Project Mk 3  (Read 23862 times)

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 22 Nov
« Reply #25 on: November 23, 2014, 04:11:43 AM »
I didn't know that cats could ride in the limo like that! Cool.

Neither did I :).  I was expecting them to go by taxi.

I also didn't notice the same effects on Showtime careers in my own game, but I think it depends on the amount of sims in town, and I tend to artificially keep those numbers up. Stinks. :(

That's interesting.  I wonder whether it's playing two Showtime careers in a row? (In fact, they overlapped slightly in this case.)  In both this and the 4x4, the first performer was fine but the second one had problems, although not the same ones.  Ellie in the 4x4 had a shortage of jobs and audiences, probably because there didn't seem to be many Sims in town.  This time, the population was OK, partly because a lot of the original inhabitants seemed to live for a very long time.  The disappearing props were infuriating, though.  Terry even lost her Box of Danger near the end but it reappeared when I re-started the game.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #26 on: December 09, 2014, 04:46:48 PM »
House 5

This will be the first house with two skills: writing and social networking.  (I’ve now enabled University).

After a few hiccups caused by the first bugs of this game, Rex moved to Barnacle Bay.  Looking through the local NPCs on SimsWiki, one woman had stood out as the obvious choice of mate.  Not only did she have some writing skill and a lifetime wish to match but her surname was Peach.  Although, come to think of it, “You remind me of my imaginary friend” doesn’t really work all that well as a chat-up line  :P.

After a quick trip into town to meet some of his new constituents (while a small house was being built on his empty plot of land), Rex called for a repairSim, hoping that the right one would turn up, and then made another call to set up a fundraising party for later.  Good news: Gwennie Peach answered the call.  Bad news: most of the party guests turned up early, while Gwennie took ages to arrive.  The fundraiser was in full swing by the time she got to the house, realised there was nothing that needed repairing and drove off again.  So much for my plan.  Rex was supposed to ask her to hang out and join the party.

It wasn’t a complete loss, though.  Just before Gwennie left, she and Rex did that across-a-crowded-room thing and realised they were madly attracted to each other.  So Rex asked everyone else to leave, invited her over again and went into action.  Even though all of his charisma challenges had cancelled when he moved, he clearly wasn’t short on charm…

…and Gwennie was pregnant by the end of Day 1.

She had a limited makeover – just an everyday outfit that would expand with her waistline (her nightie was already OK) and a new hairdo.  I’d been waiting a long time for a Sim that would suit that style (it didn’t quite work on Abi Gold).

The following evening, Gwennie realised why she’d been throwing up.

I think that expression’s probably mixed feelings.  Gwennie Peach does not like children – but apparently can’t escape the positive pregnancy moodlet.

Her pregnancy passed quietly and expensively, mostly at the spa.  While she was away, someone else tried to take up residence and eventually had to be reset.

Gwennie gave birth in the living room.  Rex had been standing around panicking but sending him off for a snack proved to be a miraculous cure for sympathetic labour pains.

As Gwennie hugged her new daughter, dislike of children forgotten, a second baby appeared on the lawn.

Welcome, Joanne and Paige.

After a relatively undisturbed night’s sleep, Rex and Gwennie slipped off to the farthest edge of the lot for a private wedding…

…and then the bride left the groom in charge of the babies and set off for university.

Well, she did have a career to max and a limited time to do it in.  I knew she was an adult but had expected her to be at the beginning of the life stage, which would have made her just a couple of days older than her husband.  Instead, I was rather shocked to find, when she was pregnant and it was already too late, that she starts out in mid-adulthood, which meant that she now only had a week before becoming an elder.  She only had six credits towards the communications degree that would give her a head start in her chosen career, so she became my first Sim to go to University for two sessions.  The first week was pretty hectic and I totally failed to get any screenshots – but she did come home with my first graduation gnome.

After a night spent getting reacquainted (ahem!) with Rex and topping up her spa moodlets, she went back for another two weeks.  With a slightly lighter class schedule this time, she could afford to spend time on extracurricular activities – like reading through the entire stock of the Nerd Shop, an activity that was primarily intended to get her ‘books read’ statistic up but proved to have a useful side-effect in social group influence.  A few days into her second spell at uni, she was able to choose a new trait.

With the aid of the motive mobile that she (I) had remembered to pack this time, she spent the nights in the library, working on her writing skill.

In the daytime, she threw herself into her studies – even when the lecturers didn’t bother to turn up.

(To be fair to the lecturer, she did eventually put in an appearance – five minutes before the end.)

Gwennie graduated with an A, unsupported by friends or family.  Maybe Rex couldn’t find a babysitter.

As soon as she was home for good, the twins had an early birthday.  (Nope, she still doesn't like kids.)

I was ridiculously pleased with Paige’s colouring – although I quickly learnt not to neglect her.  If her needs go into the orange, she practically disappears into her portrait panel  ???.

                                                                                      Joanne and Paige

As soon as the cake was eaten, Gwennie put her CV up online and soon had an offer of a job in journalism.

She worked hard at the office and devoted much of her free time to pursuing stories.

“So, Laurel, what do you do for a living?”

With Gwennie concentrating on her career, Rex temporarily became a stay-at-home father (although, for a child-hating Sim, Gwennie was a surprisingly devoted mother whenever she got a chance).

At last, a few days before the twins’ child birthday, Rex reluctantly handed them over to a babysitter, went back to work…

…and achieved his lifetime wish.

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Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #27 on: December 14, 2014, 11:15:24 AM »
Now that they had learned everything they were allowed to as toddlers, the twins spent their days playing and chatting while they waited for their next birthday.  Joanne was already showing an interest in IT.  Maybe she somehow knew what her next trait would be?

They had birthday cakes early in the morning so that they could make the most of a school-free first day of childhood.

Paige immediately started reading through the comic books her mother had brought home from University.

Jo, unable to start on her specialist skill until after her next birthday, mostly played computer games.  Gwennie had her elder birthday on the same day but didn’t let old age slow her down.  Halfway through the girls’ childhood, she achieved her dream of becoming a Star News Anchor.

She and the Leader of the Free World celebrated her success quietly at home, before the kids got in from school.

Then it was time for another birthday.

Jo seemed quite miffed that her (slightly) younger sister managed to blow out her candles and grow up first.

They hurried off to sort out new looks…

…while Gwennie celebrated having a child-free house at last.

Paige registered as a self-employed writer and split her time outside school between reading yet more books and writing her own.  Jo took up social networking and started blogging about teenage life in Barnacle Bay, Her diary, inevitably called Jo Blogs, gradually picked up followers.  She was also learning charisma and using both skills to acquire a wide circle of friends, although, surprisingly, it was quiet Paige who was elected Prom Queen.

Rex had his final birthday…

…and Peaches turned into semi-human form.  He even seemed to be able to co-exist with Peaches-the-doll.  Rex was still the only one who could see him, though.

Gwennie was continuing to write.  I’d realised that none of my Sims had ever written a vaudeville novel, so she was steadily ticking off the requirements, stopping only to write books requested by her friends or employers.  I wasn’t bothered about the writing challenges, since they’d be Paige’s task, so it was a considerable surprise when she finished writing an article for work and completed all three simultaneously.  She didn’t manage to finish her vaudeville novel in the end – about three-quarters of the way through, she stopped writing unexpectedly and started to float.

A few days later, the twins had another birthday.

Jo took the aptitude test and rushed off to university almost before the cakes were eaten.  I thought for a while that she wasn’t even going to bother to get dressed.  Fortunately, she did see sense and put her case down on the front lawn so that she could spin into everyday wear just before the van arrived.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2014, 11:27:34 AM »
At uni, Jo rented the same little house that her mother had lived in back in her student days.

It turned out that a lot of Gwennie’s old friends were still there, looking remarkably well preserved and wearing their gowns just to make the point that they’d been there, done that already.

Unfazed, Jo set about making friends – and pairing them up.

She’d deliberately taken the lightest possible class load: Gwennie might have gone to uni to get a degree but Jo was more interested in the social life.  She continued to explore the possibilities of social networking.   Sometimes its power surprised even her.

A couple of days after arriving at university, Jo Blogs achieved a five-star rating and she completed her lifetime wish.

(That screenshot is me just failing to capture it – the big numbers were hidden behind the blog interface.)

The following day, she had a buy-out offer, accepted it and started on a review blog, Jo Blogs About Stuff.  It was mostly about her family’s books and small, cheap decorative objects but people seemed to like it anyway. Within a week, she’d sold that one too and had started on Jo Blogs About University, which was largely concerned with her amorous exploits around campus.  ‘WooHoo and Tell’ proved to be wildly popular, and she followed up with the almost identical Life, University and Everything.  Not that academic matters were totally neglected.  After all, she might want to finish her business degree some time.  She might only be taking one class per day but she did try to do well…

…although it was hard to concentrate when people were playing video games and streaking in the library.

Out of lectures, she wasn’t exactly averse to streaking herself.  By the end of the second week, she’d become one of the top jocks on campus and her parties were sufficiently legendary that a police car was permanently parked outside the house.

She might have been a long way short of graduating by the end of the fortnight but she still had a ceremony the day after she arrived back home.  High school seemed such a long time ago that it was odd to be graduating from it now.

Paige was valedictorian and Most Likely to Write A Best-Selling Novel (hardly a surprise given that she’d written several while still at school), while Jo was voted Most Likely to Hack the Military Database.  Now there was an idea…

After the ceremony, Joanne and Paige chatted and exchanged graduation gifts…

…and Jo announced online that she was now available for employment.  To my surprise, she was offered a job at level 4 in the Sports Agent career.  I’d been expecting her to have to start at the bottom, like Luke and Abi in the 4x4.   Initially, her career seemed to be bugged – she failed to meet any clients on her first day, her progress bar didn’t move at all and she didn’t reappear from the stadium at the end of her shift.  Analysing statistics and negotiating a contract on her phone soon made up for that.  With her progress bar now full, she invited her boss over and got a promotion.  After that, she progressed ridiculously quickly.

Paige wasn’t doing too badly either.  She achieved her lifetime wish a couple of days into young adulthood and supemaxed writing a week later, on the same day that Jo was voted Sports Agent of the Year and bought her own team.  Jo had sold her news blog Barnacle Chronicle and supermaxed social networking the previous day.

Far earlier than I’d expected, it was time for another move.  The family made a trip to Barnacle Boneyard to set up a memorial for Gwennie…

…and then Paige hugged her father and sister goodbye…

…and called the estate agent.  She didn’t seem very happy about moving.

Then, amazingly, she got into her motive mobile (she normally walks everywhere, for some unknown reason)…

…and drove out of town.

House 5 summary
Skills: writing and social networking

Career: Politics
LTW: Leader of the Free World
Supermaxed charisma; level 10 social networking (level 8 writing)

(Traits: easily impressed, artistic, slob, lucky, dislikes children – plus ambitious (nerd influence) and workaholic (communications degree))
Career: Journalism
LTW: Star News Anchor
Supermaxed writing; level 10 handiness & charisma (social networking 2)

Traits: artistic, friendly, computer whiz, charismatic, irresistible – plus ambitious (jock influence)
Career: Sports Agent
LTW: Blog Artist
Supermaxed social networking, level 10 charisma (writing 5)

Traits: couch potato, hates the outdoors, bookworm, perfectionist, no sense of humour
LTW: Professional Author
(Career to be finished in next house)
Supermaxed writing
Building/property: Landgraab Sell’n’Swap
Unique rewards: Acclaimed Author, Teleportation Pad

Offline Malley

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 14 Dec
« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2014, 05:31:53 PM »
Congrats on completing another household!  Paige and Jo were both pretty rainboos  :)  Can't wait to see what you're doing next.

Offline Lisa46

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 14 Dec
« Reply #30 on: December 14, 2014, 09:42:41 PM »
I love the gold slider and the babies it produces.

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 14 Dec
« Reply #31 on: December 14, 2014, 09:57:08 PM »
I love the gold slider and the babies it produces.

Yeah, their colors really play well with the red and black or blue and white. It's cool!

It also took me a few read-throughs to realize that Gwennie and Jo have really dark brown hair instead of black. It's a nice shade of brown.
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Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 14 Dec
« Reply #32 on: December 17, 2014, 12:45:41 PM »
Congrats on completing another household!  Paige and Jo were both pretty rainboos  :)  Can't wait to see what you're doing next.

Thanks :).  What I'm doing at the moment is housebuilding.  I suddenly got an urge to build, so the game is on hold until Paige's new place is finished.

I love the gold slider and the babies it produces.

Me too.  I'm amazed it's still going this far into the game - and in fact seems to be getting stronger with each generation.

Yeah, their colors really play well with the red and black or blue and white. It's cool!

It also took me a few read-throughs to realize that Gwennie and Jo have really dark brown hair instead of black. It's a nice shade of brown.

Their favourite colours don't work so well, though.  Paige's is hot pink - definitely not a good colour for an all-orange Sim :).

I though they had black hair, too.  I'll have to go back into an old save and check.

Edit: We're both right.  Black roots and tips, very dark brown base with dark brown highlights.  A really nice combination, in fact: far better than either of the usual black hair colours.  I'll have to save it as a custom hair.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #33 on: December 22, 2014, 02:22:45 PM »
House 6

In the interests of trying out everything in this game, I spent a day or two messing about with blueprint mode but failed to come up with anything that really worked as a house – and I didn’t even get the Savvy Builder badge.  Then I went back to building the old-fashioned way and ended up with a suitably Christmassy house, although I have no idea what something so suburban-English is doing in Monte Vista.  Maybe it was built by a homesick expat  ::).

Paige left her desk and drove up into the walled city to meet the townsfolk.  Funnily enough, the first people she met were Gino Ferrari and the GilsCarbos.  I’d have thought they’d want to steer clear of my Sims.

She popped into the library to unlock charisma, introduced herself to some more people and, when she felt peckish, crossed the square to the Public Pizzeria to put her single cooking skill point to good use.

The following day, she went back and did more of the same.

Then she visited the salon and the Showtime venues in search of townies.  She managed to complete two charisma challenges but there was no sign of a potential husband.  Monte Vista seemed to be full of female NPCs.  Then, as she was driving back past Port-a-Party, I noticed a figure lurking in the shadows.  A male-type figure.  Paige walked over to say hello and oh-my-gosh-I-really-fancy-you.  He mumbled much the same.

She discovered that he was a magician.  Then they found that they both hated the outdoors: obviously a match made in heaven.  The skill for this house is gardening, by the way  :P.

According to SimsWiki, Giuseppe Esposito comes with five points in gardening but also two in logic, which isn’t unlocked yet.  I gave it another day or two but no better spouse material appeared, so I decided to ignore the logic skill points (but not let him learn any more) and told Paige to invite him over.

He stayed for dinner: her grandfather’s French toast, straight from the fridge.  Yum!

Then she invited him to sit and watch the stars (squeezed into the narrow strip of grass between the house and garage.  Maybe it felt less outdoorsy there.)

Once they were safely back inside, she asked him to move in and they both rolled wishes to kiss for the first time.

By the end of the evening (i.e. about 4am), they were going steady…

…and the following day, Paige wished to propose.

Giuseppe’s lifetime wish turned out to be the Perfect Aquarium, which didn’t exactly seem ideal for a Sim who prefers to stay indoors.  It’s a pity Master Magician has already gone: starting at level 7 ought to make that one pretty easy.  Still, he does have the athletic trait and the acrobat career was still free.  He swapped jobs and then headed off to the gym…

…followed by a short jog (until all that raw nature got a bit much for his delicate sensibilities).

He was soon getting promotions as a result of his increasing athletic skill, although the actual performing wasn’t going too well.

The reviews for his first gig were uniformly terrible, probably because he spent so much time standing at the front of the stage with his head in his hands.

The next wasn’t much better.

Still, his personal life was going well.  Paige, showing a previously unexpected romantic streak, was continuing to roll wishes about Giuseppe (and had embarked on a series of romantic novels).  When she wished to get married, I looked around Monte Vista for a suitable location for an indoor wedding but failed to find one.  So, ignoring their personal preferences, they headed off for a private ceremony at Seafood Hideaway.

The occasion was slightly spoilt when an acquaintance rang up and, with astonishingly bad timing, invited the bride out on a date.  She turned him down in no uncertain terms.

After that, the ceremony went smoothly...

…and the newlyweds hurried back home and indoors.

Offline Malley

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 22 Dec
« Reply #34 on: December 22, 2014, 06:05:17 PM »
Congrats to the happy couple  ;D  The house looks really nice.  I like it!

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #35 on: December 24, 2014, 02:50:17 PM »
Thanks :).

Giuseppe competed in a SimFest at the Port-a-Party Mini-Warehouse and became my first Sim to take part in a fest without winning.  Note to self: not being a natural-born performer really is a huge disadvantage.

A very familiar-looking Sim was in the audience:

In fact, when I moused over, it turned out that she was called Paige Haskill – but my Paige Haskill was over at the spa, indulging in their most expensive package.  How odd.

That evening, Paige the First found out why she’d been sent off for a treat.

She carried on working through her pregnancy, in a fairly low-key way.  I still wanted that vaudeville novel.

The baby was born at home.

They named him Basil.  (It was only when I updated the family tree that I realised ‘Basil Haskill’ doesn’t work very well but I’m too used to that being his name to change it now.)  When he aged up into a toddler, he turned out to have Faye and Rex’s blue eyes, which had skipped a generation, along with Giuseppe’s hair colour and Paige’s skin tone.

Giuseppe continued to plod through his career.  Maxing athletic had only taken him to level 7 and playing for tips or performing at the lower-level venues wasn’t fun for an outdoors-hating Sim.  He'd have had an easier time at Mick's but kept messing up auditions.  After buying the ‘That Was Deliberate’ and ‘Engaging’ rewards, he improved slightly and did manage to win the SimFest at the coffeehouse – watched, again, by Paige’s doppelgänger, who now appeared to have become an acrobat.

Finally, over halfway through adulthood, he became a Master Acrobat.

Now he could really concentrate on his gardening.  It had occurred to me that the current household’s skill was being sadly neglected (in fact, Paige still hasn’t started to learn gardening.  I’ll have to send her off for a long session in the library at some point.)  I’d built the house with a conservatory on the back, because it suited the style and it seemed like the ideal place for hate-the-outdoors Sims to raise plants.

Unfortunately, it turned out to be insufficiently indoors, possibly because of the split levels.  It seems to be sort of half-outdoors: Giuseppe gets plagued by nature when he’s in the conservatory but his wish to go inside isn’t granted if he goes straight into the main part of the house.

Both parents were keen to spend time with their adorable little son.

Giuseppe taught Basil to use the potty and then Paige took a break from writing and taught him to walk and talk…

…although she couldn’t understand why he kept wanting to talk about plants.  He seemed to find her enthusiasm for books and technology equally baffling.

Maybe it did have some effect: the first thing he did after aging up again was to ask Giuseppe for a bedtime story, although Legend of the Sports Agent probably wasn’t exactly what he had in mind.

With no need to learn skills yet, Basil spent his childhood playing in the sprinkler and practising for when he had a place of his own, with the riffraff kept at a respectful distance.

Paige and Giuseppe rolled wishes to have a second child.  Who am I to deny my Sims?

Paige had gone back to her writing once Basil had learned his toddler skills and maxed the career during her second pregnancy.

The writer career was one of the things I was least looking forward to in this game.  The only time I’d maxed it before was in my Legacy and that took almost a whole Sim lifetime.  Maybe it’s been made easier on one of the many patches since then.  Either that or it’s just the effect of lots of practice with writers.  Whatever the reason, it really wasn’t a problem: it’s definitely one of the harder self-employment careers but nowhere near as difficult as I’d remembered.

Paige has now written every genre apart from historical novels, which she will tackle in old age, and books that require Supernatural or particular careers.  She’s written two vaudeville novels, one to prove that I could do it and the other for an opportunity, and her autobiography, which I’m pretty sure is also a first.

I forgot to say when writing about the last household that one of my reasons for doing writing as an early skill was that none of my Sims had had the ‘life story’ career opp.  That’s no longer true: Rex was asked to write a political memoir in his old age.

The family’s second child was born in hospital.  Paige was in the middle of cooking when she went into labour.  By sending her to the Sanatorium, I was hoping that she’d drive off in her motive mobile and cure her hunger that way, which she very obligingly did.  There wasn’t time for Giuseppe to join her – in fact, she probably gave birth in the reception area.

I thought at first that Kelvin had a ‘normal’ skin tone but that turned out to be a trick of the Monte Vistan light.  He’s yet another goldboo.

Paige took him to the cake early on his first birthday.  She was the only member of the family not due to age up that day and spreading out the celebrations seemed like a good idea.

And the red hair persists for another generation  :D.

Happy Christmas from the Haskills!

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #36 on: December 31, 2014, 10:48:36 AM »
Basil’s snobbishness hadn’t been particularly obvious as a child but with the onset of teenage hormones he suddenly felt the urge to spend hours in front of the mirror, squeezing spots or admiring himself.

He was delighted to discover the tea set in the conservatory.

At least he wasn’t totally self-absorbed.  He was devoted to his little brother…

…although with an unfortunate tendency to leave him in the garden when he had to go to school.

Kelvin didn’t mind.  He loved the outdoors too – and Galileo was always there to play with.

Basil’s hidden nurturing trait found a new outlet partway through his teens, when he found a wild rat on his way home from completing an opportunity.

After a whole evening of playing with his new friend, he installed Manuel in a cage in his bedroom.

Kelvin had another birthday.

Unlike Basil, who was concentrating on gardening to the exclusion of everything else (well, apart from when he picked up a cooking point while I was concentrating on other members of the family), Kelvin would benefit from having a range of skills.

Some needed more practice than others  ::).

He was also showing a definite fondness for pranks.  With his mischief and Basil’s occasional mood swings, using chairs, plumbing or computers became rather more eventful than usual.

Basil grew up.

He picked the Perfect Garden as his lifetime wish…

…and achieved it immediately, even before he’d sorted out his hair and clothes.

Kelvin aged up that evening without a cake.

The practical joking was about to get a lot worse.  In the meantime, there was a graduation to attend.

Afterwards, the class valedictorian tossed his diploma, his father chatted up the prettiest of the new graduates…

…and his young brother, overcome with embarrassment at his father’s behaviour and terror at the prospect of driving lessons, had a panic attack.

Two random screenshots: the Monte Vistan dead gnome plague has struck again…

…and the mascot who visited when Kelvin aged up to teen had an unfortunate encounter with the hall floor.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #38 on: January 01, 2015, 06:13:17 AM »
Congrats to Basil on completing his LTW so quickly  :D

It was rather unexpected.  I only just managed to get the screenshot, even though I already had the camera on him.

I wasn't expecting a reply to the post either - this was meant to be a double update but I got interrupted partway through and didn't manage to post the second half yesterday.  Since I hadn't changed the date in the title, I didn't think anyone would notice the update.  So thanks for being such an attentive reader :D.

Halfway through Kelvin’s teens, Basil woke up to find that Manuel had died in the night.

Worse was to come.

The family dealt with their grief by throwing themselves into their work.  Paige, who was only a few days younger than her husband, wanted to write eighty books before her own appointment with Grim and Basil now had to care for their large garden almost unaided.  Kelvin helped out at the weekend but was too busy with school and clubs to do much on weekdays.

Basil’s hard work paid off with his promotion to Agricultural Mastermind…

…and it began to look as though Kelvin would be able to move almost as soon as he aged up.  He had an early birthday cake so that Paige could get her wish to see him graduate.

Like his older brother, he was valedictorian.

Basil wasn’t impressed.

“Well, yes, he might be top of the class but ‘Most Likely to get Electrocuted’?  What kind of a title is that?  Now I was voted ‘Most Likely to be a Millionaire’ – and I am one.  That’s a real achievement.”

It was at about this point that I realised that Super Green Thumb, which I’d given Kelvin as a unique reward, was likely to be needed by future heirs as well – and I was running out of cheap rewards available with the current set of expansions.  He’d better stick around in Monte Vista for a while after all and rack up some more happiness points.

He’d wanted to be a scientist since his early teens but didn’t seem to be a natural at the career.  He kept just missing promotions.  Fortunately, his boss proved amenable to persuasion.

Now that Basil had maxed his career, he’d stopped replacing plants as they died off and caring for the garden was taking up less of his day.  He started rolling wishes to meet new people – and fell for almost every woman he met.  Unfortunately, he was hopeless at romance.

About halfway through young adulthood, Kelvin fulfilled a flurry of big wishes and suddenly had more than enough points to buy two more rewards.  Unexpectedly, Paige, still sprightly at 106, was around to see her younger son complete his requirements.

They moved Giuseppe’s tombstone to the cemetery and said goodbye.

Kelvin had one of his panic attacks at the prospect of moving to a new town by himself…

…but Paige calmed him down.

Basil’s farewell was, of course, less reassuring.

Kelvin reminded them (again) about the importance of checking the taps and cooker regularly…

…and then called the estate agent before he lost his nerve.

The collection of Showtime rewards stayed behind in Monte Vista, since it’s unlikely that anyone will add to it now.  I was hoping for a complete set but Giuseppe didn’t get another chance at a private venue SimFest – he arrived just too late to compete in one and the next was scheduled for the day after his death.

House 6 summary
Skill: gardening

Career: Self-employed writer
Supermaxed writing, level 10 gardening (entirely learned from books)

(Traits: hates the outdoors, friendly, light sleeper, athletic, ambitious)
Career: Acrobat
LTW: Master Acrobat
Supermaxed gardening, level 10 athletic

Traits: loves the outdoors, light sleeper, snob, green thumb, hot-headed
Career: Self-employed gardener
LTW: The Perfect Garden
Supermaxed gardening

Traits: loves the outdoors, neurotic, never nude, handy, angler
(Career and LTW to be finished in next house)
Level 10 handiness and gardening
Building/property: Teatro Fantastico
Unique rewards: Born to Cook, Dusty Old Lamp

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #39 on: January 04, 2015, 11:55:33 AM »
House 7

Kelvin moved to Sunlit Tides and found his watcher had come over all Sim Family Robinson.

His new house had a waterfall-fed stream…

…powering a water wheel.  (I picked up the Brunch at the Old Mill set on sale as an advance Christmas present.)

Other eco features include a bank of solar panels and a couple of wind turbines, not to mention the madly assorted furnishings, which all look as though they were rescued from skips and jumble sales.  It’s a pity I didn’t make him eco-friendly.  Well, maybe next generation.  It will be a good chance to study the effect on the household bills, though.

Note the old-style windmill in the foreground of the next screenshot.  It was put in purely for set-dressing purposes but is about to become A Major Plot Point.

Kelvin’s long-sleeved shirt and dungarees weren’t exactly appropriate to a tropical island, so his first priority after moving in was to get a new everyday outfit.

That’s better!

Then he cooked himself dinner and sat down to admire the sunset views from the house, which were pretty spectacular.

With a new set of colleagues to meet, not to mention a new boss to schmooze, an early night seemed a good idea.

Best-laid plans and all that…  Just after midnight, the burglar music started up.  It took me a while to find her.  I thought she’d be heading for the door designated as ‘front’, or at least another enclosed part of the treehouse, all of which had burglar alarms.  Instead, she seemed to be sneaking her way around a tour of the grounds.

And it appeared she fancied Kelvin, even though they’d not yet met (he was four floors above her and fast asleep).  I woke him up and told him to phone the police and then sent him after her.

Too slow.  I didn’t realise something as large as a windmill could be stolen.

The police arrived just too late to stop the theft.

According to the officer in charge, the papers were full of the recent spate of cunning burglaries.  Clearly, a criminal mastermind was at work.

Kelvin was impressed and texted Jessie the burglar to say so.

Then he thanked the nice, if ineffective, officer and went back to bed.

The sunrise was just as pretty as the previous evening’s sunset had been.

After work, Kelvin invited Jessie Goth over for a chat.  He was very keen to ask about her career.  (Sims are so slow sometimes.)

They chatted…

…and then he asked her to sleep over, hastily purchasing a sleeping bag as a guest bed while she was in the loo.

Things progressed in a Simlish-romantic fashion from then on.  A pillow fight…

…a hesitant admission of attraction…

…watching the stars together…

…and, finally, a serious kiss.

I actually had my eye on Joy Choi, one of the Sunlit Tides maids, as the next spouse, but the game clearly had other ideas.  Jessie has good traits, a non-clone face and a couple of points each in cooking and fishing, so I'm happy with the way it worked out.

I'm also ridiculously pleased with the house, although it may turn out to be a pain to play in, with all of those floors, stairs and ladders.  Not to mention the likely devastation if a meteor hits...

Offline Malley

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 4 Jan
« Reply #40 on: January 04, 2015, 01:11:35 PM »
The scenery is so pretty!  The sunrises and sunsets were stunning  :)  Congrats to Kelvin on his new place.  I love the fact that he was able to text the burglar to tell her she did well.  Got to love sims!

So thanks for being such an attentive reader :D.

You're very welcome  ;D

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #41 on: January 11, 2015, 11:29:41 AM »
The scenery is so pretty!  The sunrises and sunsets were stunning  :)

It's a beautiful town.  I haven't played there nearly as much as it deserves, although at least the Haskills will be there for two generations.

I forgot to say that I’ve now added Island Paradise.  I was hoping that boats would be useful for crossing the central lagoon but the Sims seem to prefer taking the long route around by car.

Jessie, it seems, really likes windmills.  I didn’t notice until I started Kelvin on a round of upgrades but she seems to have stolen the wind turbines as well as the old windmill.  That was a pretty expensive night’s work.  It’s just as well that the family is rich enough now for it not to matter much.

A few days after asking Jessie to move in, Kelvin popped the question…

…and they were married the following weekend, surrounded by colleagues and friends (or at least, the subset of guests who actually bothered to sit down and watch the ceremony).

I’m not sure whether Jessie’s being all adoring and wifely in that screenshot or merely keeping a careful eye on what Kelvin's doing with that knife  ;).

The newlyweds spent their honeymoon touring the island’s fishing spots.  Kelvin’s fishing skill was still lagging behind his job requirements and his bride, despite not being an angler, seemed keener on fishing than he was.

Oddly for a former burglar, Jessie had arrived with a wish to become a forensic scientist, which wasn’t a possibility at this stage of the game.  She joined the police briefly but then registered as a self-employed angler and appeared to forget her DNA analysis dreams at once.  Soon, she had enough happiness points from her constant fishy wishes to change her LTW to Jack (Jill?) of All Trades.

I normally give Sims cars in their favourite colour, even if they're wearing different colours.  This time there was a slight problem in that they both had the same favourite and Kelvin already had a pink motive mobile.  So Jessie got one with a distinctly individual paint job  :).

Soon after returning to work, Kelvin achieved his lifetime wish.

Jessie had reached level 5 of the angler career that morning and, a few hours later, had knocked out self-employed gardener as well.  It seemed like a good time to start a family.

While she was throwing up at regular intervals but still able to apply for jobs, Jessie sought out the proprietor at Totally Tropical Performance Park and registered as an acrobat.  (Mick’s was the only Showtime venue placed by the game but I’d added small custom performance park and coffeehouse lots when Kelvin moved in).

It occurred to me at about this point that a treehouse isn’t the ideal residence for a pregnant Sim but Jessie seemed to manage OK anyway.

She spent her pregnancy working on skills, dealing with leftover wishes from her first two careers…

…and not-exactly-jogging to start advancing in the current one.

But she was taking it easy in their living area when the contractions started.

Rod grew up into another red-headed, yellow-skinned toddler, with Jessie’s stunning dark blue eyes.  (Since she mostly wears sunglasses, it took me a while to notice her eye colour - and her freckles.)

His parents took turns to stay at home, keep an eye on their little son and teach him his toddler skills.  Jessie used the treadmill she’d installed in the nursery to work on her career while Rod was asleep and went out to perform for tips while Kelvin was on duty.

An opportunity to perform at Serenity Retreat gave her career progress enough of a nudge that she reached level 5, even though no-one turned up to watch.  She hurried over to City Hall to register as a lifeguard.

Patrolling the beaches turned out to be an easy task – the locals all stuck to splashing in the shallows and nobody needed rescuing.  Even the journalist who managed to capsize her dinghy in spectacular fashion insisted that everything was fine and she could sort it out on her own, thanks.

So Jessie jogged up and down the beach and eventually got in some sailing practice of her own.

Working out at home and learning charisma at the library did her career much more good and within a couple of days she’d achieved her lifetime wish.

It was time to expand the family again.  I’d just realised that I’d never tried out sauna woohoo, with its ‘try for girl/boy’ options, so Jessie called a babysitter and set off for the Relaxation Station.  Kelvin joined her after work but didn’t seem to see any reason to change out of his work clothes, despite the steam.  I think he’s getting into this ‘mad scientist’ thing a bit too much  :P.

Since I had no particular preference for the sex of the next heir (the name was picked out but would suit either), I let them try both options.  Several times.  No lullaby chimes.

These two seem to have a minor fertility problem – Rod’s conception also took several attempts.  At last, they gave up and went home, stopping off for one more try in the kids’ treehouse.  Success!

During Jessie’s second pregnancy, Rod aged up to child and became an angler (he’s the intended supermaxer for this house).  His birthday was on Friday, so he had the whole weekend to work on his new skill without being interrupted by school, although the results weren’t very impressive yet.

Jessie wanted a girl and Kelvin wanted a boy, so I left it up to the game to decide.

And we have yet another yellowboo.  Welcome, (female) Casey!

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 11 Jan
« Reply #42 on: January 11, 2015, 12:02:17 PM »
I've had trouble getting my sims to conceive while using the sauna too. :(

I also want to pick up and hug Rod. I love those deep blue eyes!
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Offline Malley

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 11 Jan
« Reply #43 on: January 11, 2015, 03:28:23 PM »
I’m not sure whether Jessie’s being all adoring and wifely in that screenshot or merely keeping a careful eye on what Kelvin's doing with that knife

Good question  :o

The shot with the journalist in the capsized boat was too funny! Welcome to Rod and Casey too  :)

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 11 Jan
« Reply #44 on: January 17, 2015, 07:42:07 AM »
I've had trouble getting my sims to conceive while using the sauna too. :(

I also want to pick up and hug Rod. I love those deep blue eyes!

Oh.  Buggy premium content?  Well, at least they enjoyed themselves ;)

He was a very cute toddler.  He makes a pretty good-looking young adult as well (he's just aged up in-game).  The stages in between, not so much.  It's odd how that seems to happen with some Sims.

Good question  :o

The shot with the journalist in the capsized boat was too funny! Welcome to Rod and Casey too  :)

I don't know how the boat managed to get into that position - or out of it, come to that.  An odd routing issue, I assume, like the flying cars in the 4x4.

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #45 on: January 23, 2015, 04:23:25 PM »

Kelvin aged up to elder and retired on the same day that Casey became a toddler.

She was a remarkably self-sufficient little thing, happy to occupy herself in or around the toybox when she wasn’t learning her toddler skills...

…which was just as well, really.  Kelvin and Jessie were far too involved with one another to waste valuable couple time on any children they might have produced.

At first I thought this was Kelvin collapsing and ill, or possibly dying, and Jessie mourning over him.  Then I remembered that it doesn’t work like that for Sims.  When I moused over, it appeared it was just Jessie demonstrating correct mouth-to-mouth technique.

Apparently, Kelvin liked it.

With those two in that sort of a mood, it would clearly be a good thing for the kids to be as independent as possible, as soon as possible.  So Casey had an early cake as soon as she’d learned to walk, talk and use the potty.

(Yes, I popped her into CAS and gave her freckles.  One of my pet peeves about Sims 3 is the non-heritability of freckles and moles. Since Jessie is freckled, I wanted at least at least one of the kids to get them.  I tried them on Rod as well but they didn’t suit his face shape.)

Rod was keen to show Casey how things should be done.  He insisted on demonstrating the use of the fireman’s pole for quick departures when you’d got up a bit late for school.

He demonstrated it several times, in fact.  Then he showed off his scout badges.  Interminably.

Casey wasn’t impressed.  At least they were only children together for a few hours: a week after his little sister, Rod had an early cake.

Once he’d learned to drive, Rod persuaded his parents that that meant he was equally safe to be left in charge of a boat.

Whenever he wasn’t at school or asleep, he was afloat, blissfully fishing.

A few days later, Jessie celebrated her elder birthday and, like her husband, wished to retire at once.

She immediately started throwing wishes to learn skills: she seemed to have decided that Jack of All Trades wasn’t enough.  What she really wanted was to be a Renaissance Sim.  On the other hand, everyday stuff was just too boring to keep track of.  Either that, or dementia was starting to set in.  Kelvin was already spending most of his non-flirting-with-Jessie life in the rocking chair and she seemed to feel he had the right idea.  Her newly revealed absent-minded trait became a real pain: she couldn’t be trusted to finish any task.  The worst was when she wandered off in the middle of a baking session.  Fortunately Casey, now a teenager, was brave.  And it wasn’t a school day.

Rod reached young adulthood and graduated as valedictorian and Most Likely to Burn Down His Own House, the first swap in the ribbon collection.  (No, that's his mum  :P.)  I assume it was the pyro trait again.  Rod had inherited both that and the saluting ability.  Casey, the prospective heir, had neither.

A demonstration was in progress outside the town hall during the ceremony – apparently, there had been frequent llama invasions recently and the local residents were far from happy about it.

Casey spent her teens proving she was her mother’s daughter by working on a variety of skills.

Rod continued to fish and, a few days into young adulthood, achieved his lifetime wish.

In fact, he could probably have got it as a teenager if I’d been quicker off the mark.  By the time I wondered whether he had enough perfect fish yet, he had seventeen different species.  Now all ( ???!) that was left was to supermax the skill and reach the top of the career.

Soon after this, Kelvin, aged 93, got out of bed in the middle of the night – and not just because of an ageing bladder.

Jessie mourned but seemed far less distraught than I’d expected.  It took me a while to notice that I’d not picked up his urn.

So that explained the creepy sound effects.

Casey graduated as valedictorian and Most Popular.  The protesters were still there, although they were now complaining about burglars.  Jessie, wisely, didn’t comment.

Both kids turned out well as grown-ups, I think.  Neither looks particularly unusual, although most sliders are a long way from zero.  Jessie’s narrow head, which they both inherited, is the only feature needing careful management – some hairstyles look awful on them.

While Rod continued to fish, as usual, Casey registered for her new career and got to work.

I had this town all worked out: Casey would stay in her childhood home until she’d maxed the career at least and possibly achieved her LTW, neither of which would take long.  I hadn’t been too bothered about her maxing fishing as a child and teen, knowing that several hours’ angling would turn up in a case sooner or later.  Unfortunately, things have changed since I last did the Pervasive Private Eye wish.  It used to be easy – I did it alongside Paranormal Profiteer in one family, with the siblings working alternating shifts.  It’s not so simple now.  Even though the stakeout bug has been partially fixed, it can take several (or many) attempts to succeed.  Casey was stuck hiding behind bushes in the graveyard for twenty-odd hours at one point.  In fact, I cancelled opportunities a few times, only for them to fire again shortly afterwards.

Obviously, my plans were in tatters.  Casey was now unlikely to become a Pervasive Private Eye before full adulthood and the intended ‘Surrounded by Family’ in the next generation was looking very dodgy indeed.  Besides, the only babysitter in her high school class had been a girl.  Not that that stopped Casey fancying her – another slight problem.  She’d had a male best friend from school but they’d not become prom dates and, of the people she bumped into around town, she was attracted to most of the women and none of the men.  Not ideal for an heir.

Also, I’d noticed a blue ‘I’m learning a skill’ bar over her head sometimes while she was working and I was worried that it might be logic.  (It turned out that it was, in fact – she unlocked the skill shortly after moving, just from snooping for clues.  Because my PIs have always learned logic early on and often gone most of the way through the career just by skilling, I’d never realised that the job itself builds logic.)  So Casey took a brief career break to max fishing – and pick up a few more points in other skills.  Rod had already supermaxed fishing and reached level 10 of his career, slightly aided by his parents’ omniplants.

With her fishing level 10 achieved, Casey said goodbye to her mother and brother…

…and moved into her new home.  It wasn’t far away.

And at last I know why Tansy in the 4x4 left Hidden Springs in her formals but arrived in Monte Vista in her everyday clothes.  Moving into a new house seems to trigger a change back into the default outfit – Casey paused briefly to spin out of her career clothes before running across the road.

House 7 summary
Skill: fishing

Career: Science
LTW: Become a Creature-Robot Cross-Breeder
Supermaxed gardening, level 10 handiness and fishing

(Traits: excitable, lucky, clumsy, good sense of humour)
LTW: Jack of All Trades (self-employed angler and gardener, acrobat, lifeguard)
Supermaxed gardening, level 10 fishing, athletic, charisma and cooking
Although Jessie only supermaxed one skill, she completed ten other skill challenges: at least one from each of her skills, plus all three for consignment.

Traits: loves the outdoors, heavy sleeper, angler, flirty, sailor
Career: Self-employed angler
LTW: Presenting the Perfect Private Aquarium
Supermaxed fishing

Traits: perceptive, brave, loves the outdoors, charismatic, family oriented
(Career and LTW to be finished in next house)
Level 10 fishing
Building/property: Pleasant Pages Bookstore
Unique rewards: Opportunistic, Clone Voucher

Offline Malley

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 23 Jan
« Reply #46 on: January 23, 2015, 07:06:26 PM »
Apparently, Kelvin liked it.

That shot reminded me of the pool scene with the lifeguard in The Sandlot  ;)

Congrats on completing another household too!

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #47 on: January 25, 2015, 02:32:13 PM »
Thanks :)

House 8

Casey’s new home stayed as an undeveloped plot of land for quite a long time.  In keeping with private eye tradition, she lived out of her car, moving from interview to stakeout to investigation.

(I can’t help feeling that a sauna may not be the best place to dust for prints.)

At last, a few days before her adult birthday, Casey reached the top of her profession.

She was still only at level 3 of logic, so she spent most of the time leading up to her birthday in the library, reading skill books.

With a midlife crisis in full swing, maybe it was time to make some changes to her lifestyle.  First, a house.

The next step was to invite over that one male best friend from school, Solomon Luther.

He’d never been over to visit before, because I was worried about newspaper deliverers’ glitchy ageing.  In fact, it seemed to have worked in reverse in his case – he should have been about the same age as Casey but, once she’d asked him to move in, he turned out to be a week younger.

On the day that Solomon joined the family, Jessie died.   By my reckoning, she was 120 – my oldest Sim for quite some time.

Solomon arrived, obligingly enough, with the Super Spy wish.  Since he already had some handiness skill points, a technology degree seemed like a good idea.   Casey tutored him in logic until he achieved a Distinguished Award.

He was far harder work to get through a degree than any of my previous Sim students, possibly because of his childish trait.  Keeping him happy between lectures while not letting his performance drop too much took quite a lot of attention.

During the vac, Casey proposed.

Then Solomon went back to uni for a second week year and finished his course, plagued by minor glitches.  At last, Saturday arrived.  He seemed amazed to have passed at all, never mind finishing on an A.  He tried to invite Casey to the ceremony but it seemed that fiancées didn’t count as ‘friends and family’ (in fact, all of his Sunlit Tides friends had disappeared from his relationship panel).  He also managed to lose his robe and mortarboard at some point and ended up graduating in his everyday outfit.

Solomon and Casey spent his first day back home at the gym.  They were both holding wishes to max the athletic skill by this point.

A few hours into their training session, a fight broke out between two old ladies (possibly under the influence of juice, judging by the thought bubbles).  Then the victim jumped into her assailant’s arms and they left the gym hand-in-hand.  I think they need relationship counselling.

Undisturbed by the violence (well, she was a tough private eye, after all), Casey carried on running and reached level 10.

Solomon didn’t.  About five minutes short of his goal, he was rudely interrupted by a birthday.

Yep, one of the old ladies came back just in time to join the celebration.  No idea why.

Unusually for this family, he didn’t have a midlife crisis – but he acted as though he had anyway.  He went straight from the gym to the spa, to get the tattoo he’d been wanting ever since moving in, and then visited the hospital for plastic surgery.  Nothing major, just knocking most of his facial sliders away from the central position.  As a side effect, his age set back to where it should have been all along.  Oh well  :-\.

The following weekend, they threw a wedding party, attended by colleagues, friends and the bride’s sole surviving family member.

The following day, Solomon, who was behind on his reports metric, went over to question visit his brother-in-law and found that Rod had become old overnight, with unfortunate results.  Not only had he lost all of his hair but he’d stopped wearing his sunhat just when he really needed it.

Meanwhile, Casey was visiting the science lab…

Offline Malley

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 25 Jan
« Reply #48 on: January 25, 2015, 02:40:20 PM »
Those two old ladies in the gym were pretty awesome. The happy couple got some entertainment while they were working out at least  ;)

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3: updated 25 Jan
« Reply #49 on: January 25, 2015, 03:15:20 PM »
Sometimes I'd really like to know the townies' back-stories  ;).