Monday, November 23, 2009

Realm of Empires

My husband has been playing a game he recently discovered on Facebook called Realm of Empires. He is a fan of RPGs, but usually doesn't go for MMORPGs, like World of Warcraft and the like. He really likes the Elder Scrolls series and games like that. However, RoE seems to be different. In RoE, you create your own village, recruit a military, and build up your buildings and defenses. There are different realms (he is currently playing on Realm 4), and each village is run by another person. The game is played in real time, so your silver mine is always producing, and you are always vulnerable to attack. There are also rebel villages that can be attacked and plundered of their silver. If a player remains inactive for 14 days, their village is considered abandoned, and it is easily looted.

Realm of Empires promotes a social approach to gaming. In one of the beginner's quests, it is encouraged that you join a clan. Joining a clan is an advantage, as they can provide support, both in money and troops. Most of the larger clans require that you remain active in their forums, and each has their own set of rules of conduct. The clans have alliances and non-aggression pacts (NAPs), so it is important to read the overview of each clan before deciding who to join.

Another unique part of RoE is that it allows you to decide how much (or how little, for those who work a lot or have other obligations) you want to play. A person can play on a single realm and only check their village once or twice a day to build their empire. A person who wants to play more can have a village on multiple realms and join an active clan, allowing them to play to their heart's content.

I know that hubby enjoys the graphics, but I have to show how nice they are. Instead of being campy little flash cartoons (think Farmville), the graphics in Realm of Empires are more refined. For example, here is an example of a village that has been built up quite a bit.:

In the above photo, you can see that each building has a number attached to it. This allows you to easily see what level each item is, so you can recognize at a glance which need to be worked on. It's quite different from a starter village, isn't it?

Another thing that I love is the fact that it is real time, so the village changes with the time of day. Remember the first village I showed you? Well, here it is at night:

My hubby really enjoys playing this game, and whatever makes him happy makes me happy. Don't forget to thank a vet!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veteran's Day

Today is Veteran's Day, so I want to take the time to thank each and every person who is or has ever fought for our country. This holiday has special meaning for me, as I am a military spouse, and as such am constantly surrounded by the most amazing people doing the most amazing things. Especially my wonderful husband, who has given up so much to join the Army and fight. He's been deployed multiple times and is gearing up for yet another deployment, this time to territory that is unknown for us. Every time he leaves it is hard on him, hard on me, and very hard on our 3 little girls. But they know their Daddy is a soldier and has an important job to do.

Many people don't know why we celebrate Veteran's Day on 11 November, so I'd like to share with you this article I found that explains it:

Back in 1918, in the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, a stop to hostilities was declared, ending World War I. An armistice to cease the fighting on the Western Front was signed by the Allied powers and Germany.

President Woodrow Wilson immediately proclaimed the day "Armistice Day," kicking off the annual commemoration on November 11. But over the years, with veterans returning from World War II and the Korean War, Armistice Day became Veterans Day — a day reserved to honor veterans returning from all wars. But 11/11 still represented the end of the Great War in the public's mind, and the date stuck.

In 1921, unidentified dead from the war were buried in Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., Westminster Abbey in London, and the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. The tradition to honor those killed in the war but never identified continues every year in the U.S. The ceremony is held at 11 a.m. at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery.

Congress designated Veterans Day as a legal holiday in 1938.

For those of you who don't know, the picture at the beginning of my post is of the 4th Infantry Memorial at Fort Hood, TX. We were stationed there for 4 years and left in June. Keep those injured and killed in the recent tragedy there in your thoughts. It's hard enough sending your loved one off to war...we don't need to worry about their safety at home too.

Don't forget to thank a vet, today and every day.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Okay, this is going to be short and sweet. I am freaking out! My mom will be here in just over 12 hours for her visit, and I need to CLEAN! There's laundry to be done, bathrooms to clean, and I still need to vacuum all the dog hair out of the cracks in the couch so she doesn't smother while sleeping in the sofa bed. Gaaaahhhhhhh! Time to crank up the iPod and tackle one room at a time, I suppose.

Oh, and I seem to have lost one of my freaking awesome Pasha stitchmarkers. Wahhhh!! I don't know where it could be! I'm hoping to find it while I'm cleaning the living room today. It was on my needles, but it must have slipped off when the girls were moving it around. *sigh* Oh well, time to clean! Don't forget to thank a vet!

Monday, November 2, 2009


October is over, and now November is here. This year is just flying by. Some exciting things have happened lately, or are about to happen. First off, Munchkins 1 & 2 started Learn to Skate on Saturday! It's so funny watching them learn to ice skate. Bella did really well, and was even standing up on her own after falling down by the end of the lesson. Brooke...well...she really liked being on all fours and acting like a puppy. :) At least they had a good time. I just hope that Bella gives more of an effort next time. She tends to just give up when she can't do something the first time, and it's rather frustrating.

Another super exciting thing that's happening is Mom's visit! It'll be her first time to Colorado. I can't wait to have her out to visit. This will be the first time she's been to visit us since Kaelyn was born. We've been out there, but it's so much fun when she comes to us. She'll get here on Thursday, and I CAN'T WAIT! Well, I think that's about all for now. Lots of cleaning and laundry to do before Mom arrives! Don't forget to thank a vet!