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Our Caves

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When we discovered we had accidentally made a little room during our first step of landscaping, I decided that we really needed some caves.  Thankfully Fanatik has a super easy Cave Kit.  I went a bit nuts and had about a quarter of the sim filled with caves, but didn’t really want to mess with the landscaping of the SL land (one roommate is the actual land owner, so only he can do the SL landscaping, whereas I can do all of the mesh fun).  I scaled back and there are just four full cave rooms and then the exit.  I need to add more decorative features, especially to the first and fourth rooms, but at the moment, I’m good.

 

As you saw before, this is the “down the ladder” access point, which we typically use as the entrance, but there are technically two ways, since the other is a rock archway down by the pond.  We usually start here and leave by the rock path.  A little more Alice in Wonderland© this way.

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When you go down the ladder (or fall if you’re as uncoordinated as me) you enter a pretty barren room at the moment, but there’s a full bed of twinkling lights that fade in and out on the floor, with torches lighting all of the walls.  There’s a little rock path near the white eyeball flower (which is now gone), which leads to the pathway to go to the second cave room.

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I continued the torches through the rock tunnel, although the lighting doesn’t match the natural lighting in the tunnel.  I wanted lights and didn’t give a patootie if I put some in dark spots.  LOL

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The second room, at the end of the rock tunnel path.  This is my absolute favorite room.  Unfortunately a static picture doesn’t capture the absolute beauty of this room.  The water has built in animations, plus I have meditation pose balls out for people to enjoy since it is so serene.  There’s a star archway as you enter, then rotating sections of colored stars all inset from the walls of stationary colored stars.  All twinkle and switch color schemes randomly.  I also added some luminescent plants I found at The Looking Glass.  When you set WL to midnight it is pure beauty.

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So I took advantage of the built in animations.  Apparently I really needed to wash my legs, according to the first anim that kicked in.  *grin*  This gave a nice picture of the background of star lights, though, plus a dim hint of one of the luminescent fronds.  This room is an additive at Fanatik, so the water is not SL water and has the most gorgeous texturing.

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The third room became an Aught gaming room, but was too blah, so I went to E.V.E. Studios and got their luminescent and waving colored fungi.  I first started out with the whole room covered in them, honestly just to disturb one of my roommates since the fungi weirded him out at the store.  *laugh*  Then I scaled it back and it is kind of fascinating to watch them wave around with the color fluctuating slightly.  For some reason it reminds me of the “poor, unfortunate souls” from Little Mermaid©.  *grin*

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This I included just in case you get the Cave Kit.  It’s full mesh, so if you want to rez a mesh item (like all of my belongings LOL), make sure to build a prim to rez onto, and then move things into position.  Otherwise you’ll lose any no copy items and you’ll get that lovely “…does not allow…” message.

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And the final room, leading to the exit.  I decided to go a little more lively, since it leads to the outdoor sunlight, plus I then got to find a use for some cool finds I picked up in the past few years.  I need to add some additional items, especially to work with the overgrown piano that I totally love, but for now, it works.

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And this is one of the sloped entry pieces of the kit that is attached to the last room with most of the slope behind this shot.  I love the inside of the rock archway we used though and how it works with the growth from the last room, so I chose to skip up a little.  You can just slightly see the pond with the HPMD lit tree just outside the exit.

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If you want any caves, I can’t recommend Fanatik’s kit enough, although it’s an investment, since it’s not super cheap.  For the quality and ease of use, it’s well worth it.  And there are TONS of pieces I didn’t use or show.  Some of the tunnel creases are covered up with the included tunnel rocks and collapsed rock piles and you could even use them to give a lot more craggy details to the walls/rooms.  This was a long part of the landscaping process, but I’m so glad that I held out through three attempts in order to find the kit that worked perfectly.  Now excuse me, because I’m off to meditate in the glowing grotto…

Seraphim’s Yard Sale

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If you’re into SL then you probably know that it’s Arcade month.  In case you don’t know about the Seraphim (dot com) website, they also host a yard sale where people can sell their Arcade duplicates and unwanted wins.  I personally hate to put money into the machine without knowing I’ll get something I really want, unless it’s a designer that I’m in love with all of their products, so the yard sale works especially well for me.  I can look through all of the boxes and see if the ones I want are being sold at the sale.  Note: you’ll never see rares there.  Those go to MP or other high dollar resell sims, whereas everything at Seraphim’s has to be pull price.  So if you want Mutresse’s  Persistent Otter, you can look for it at Seraphim’s without spending extra money on prizes you may not want (although I adore all their animals LOL).  As the month progresses, there will be a lot more items available, of course, so keep checking if your heart is set on something.

 

 

As you can see in the top row, there’s an overview of all of the booths for every vendor at The Arcade.  To the right, you can see the beginnings of the resale boxes collection for that vendor (which happens to be the Aii – Catacomb Prince Princess booth and I just HAD to get the creepy skeletal companion *grin*).  In the big picture you can see the Otter Pond booth I was using for an example.  I’ve all ready picked up several (I have at least a few from every Arcade *face palm*), but the great thing is some people go ahead and unbox it, so you get to see the prize in action.  The Persistent one swings around trying to get that rope off, which I got to see since someone unpacked that and made it pretty irresistible then.  If you’re new to Arcade items, they’re just like regular Gacha items; they’re transfer but not copy, so you can shop for others, or your resale shop, but be careful rezzing your Persistent Otter on a mesh surface, because you only get the one chance!  (Please rez it onto a prim surface, even if it’s just a simple cube you build!)

 

So, if you’d like to join the hordes of shoppers, hit Seraphim’s yard sale here.

Landscaping Part 2

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It was brought to my attention that I had added our home’s landscaping pictures to my Flickr account and forgot to actually blog it (thank you Z!).  *facepalm* So, for those of you that like this side of my blog, here’s for you.  There will be one more part, since I still made some tweaks after this set of pictures, but the general build was becoming solid at this point.

 

 

This is at the lowest right corner of the property.  The weird looking white thing is actually a lit twig tent with a fire in front, and it looks really cute when the night setting is turned on, however, you wouldn’t have seen anything else, so I had to make the choice of a weird picture.  *grin*landscaping part 2_003

 

This is obviously the side that shows the above bridge’s side, along with our cliff line, just because those cliffs are so freaking amazing!  Walking them in mouselook (where you look through the avatar’s eyes) is one of the coolest walks!

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This is at the top of the hill, which I tweaked a little bit more after this was taken.  I tried a few different buildings, but this is the one I landed on.landscaping part 2_006

 

This is the look down as you walk down from the plateau on the left side of the above picture.  It has stairs to go down to the house or you can stop at the landing and take the ladder down into the new cave system that was installed (next post)

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This is once you hit the bottom with some rezzing spots, plants, and later on I added a seating area.  The slight sideways front view of the cliffs was kind of cool to me, so I had to include this shot.

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This is the lower level if you walk straight past the tractor/house in the above picture.  The pond comes with a willow that isn’t quite as pretty compared to most of our landscaping choices, and the animations and scripts are built into that willow, so I didn’t feel like fighting modifying to a different tree.  Instead I just moved an HPMD lit tree to the very back edge of the willow, so all of the anims and poses work perfectly still.  *pats back for creative thinking* 

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And another shot of the pond, but a little more of the detail plus the super cute open canoe cuddling seat/bed, to sit and watch the twinkling lights when an evening WL is selected.  🙂  (By the way, most landscaping features are either HPMD or Studio Skye, with flowers predominately from Heart Botanicals.)

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Caves come next and then the final version.  A few may overlap a little, since there are minor tweaks and it’ll be hard to keep track of honestly.  *grin*  Just wanted to warn you.  Make sure to check out the gorgeous caves though!!

New Landscaping Part 1

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We’ve been in the middle of a massive remodeling of our property for a few weeks now.  Half way in (where this post ends) I changed my mind on the direction I wanted to go and a lot of it got picked back up.  I can’t seem to plan these out very well.  I have to just get in there and see what works.  We accidentally created a tiny water room in the midst of the land pieces, which got me obsessed with having an underground area, so after the last picture here I went and found a cave kit.  Up came the land pieces, a cave system was put in, and land was put down around it.  I have almost all of it changed now, except for needing to put out some plants and little things like that.  Even ended up changing the building at the top of the cliff.  *laugh*  I stand by the belief that as a woman I can change my mind at any point in time and SL isn’t any different.  *grin* 

 

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We prefer to use some mesh cliff land forms, since they’re easier to manipulate than the world land, plus we can get a more realistic look.  In order to get help, I just make tons of copies of each piece and then Z could help move them into place too, so that’s why you see pancake stacks of pieces.  *laugh*  Goodbye to our little stream for now…we’ll see you next remodel.

 

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Kind of reminds you of Legos©, doesn’t it? 

 

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At this point we had discovered the accidental cave (you can see just the tip of some blue in the middle of the land in the bottom picture.  And I stopped taking pictures at this point, since another remodel of this area was going to start the next day.  Weeks later I’m still finishing up…*laugh*  So here’s the behind-the-scenes look of the craziness that goes into our designing our little edge of our digital world into the Eden that we dream up.  Hopefully you got a few laughs at the complete oddity of this.  *smile*

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Neighborhood Watch

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It was a rare night that most of us were able to be on at the same time and hang out.  I’m known for having really weird things in my inventory that I’ve collected over the years (I’m ancient in SL time) and the habit of collecting creative items has spread.  Instead of playing a game or something like that, we found funny animals to ride around the property on.  

 

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Sis’s snail is new, but I bought all of us dinosaurs to ride at an Arcade event nearly a year ago, and we decided to check the new landscape via our critters.  By the way, the dinosaurs truly do make little huffs and grunts like you’d imagine.  So I (Bre) am on the Raptor on the left, Z is on the blue Triceratops, and Sis is on the funny as all get out snail.

 

 

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Z took off on his own for a bit, so I got out my new snail and the Sarcastic Sisters let our snails mingle while we chatted and laughed.  I’m thinking that we should take a stroll on one of the SL roadways and see what kinds of reactions we get.  Once we learned that Z had taken his Dino into the kitchen to eat the pastries I so neatly rezzed in there, we activated our neighborhood watch.

 

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Sis had also won a wandering snail that she gifted me, so we grabbed it to make the last stand as Z and Blue came out of the house.  It might not be the most intimidating neighborhood watch, but it’s the most unique you’ll ever see!!  Never fear, the Regulus Watch is here!

 

 

Stormy Beach

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When I’m restless I tend to lately get on in the wee hours and wander the places listed in the destination guide or where my favorite SL bloggers have taken pictures at.  One forever night I went to a recommended beach and it was so beautiful.  There are a lot of areas to the sim, Gale Storm Retreat, but after checking out the country fun areas, the beach called to me.  I haven’t been back to a beach since just before my 15th birthday, right before we moved from CA.  And I miss the call of that wild and beautiful ocean.  So this is just a “oh, pretty pictures” post.  At first I played with my windlights, since I generally leave it on CalWL, so that’s why it’s a little lighter at first.  Then I turned on local WL and my jaw dropped.  I turned up my graphics while hanging out and imagined myself into the storm.  If you’re in the mood for a very fascinating place, you must check out this sim.  Like I said, this is only the beach.  There’s a barn dance hall, some fun little buildings, and join the group (500L, but you get GG poses and more…); once you join you can rez vehicles to drive their roadway, which is the best scenic roadway I’ve found so far in SL since I became a mesh only snob.  If you’re into building your flickr feed as an SL blogger, I highly recommend you visit.  You’ll find so many themes to work with.  And on we go…

 

First, I found my first pose and started playing with WLs.  Although this is far from the best, there’s something magical about it, so I kept the picture.  Plus, check out that skirt!  I’m hardly out of it since Facepalm put it out.  Jean skirt top with a sheer skirt that is uber feminine.  As fun sized as I am, I’d need to be on Gene Simmons’ shoes to wear something this long and flowy in real life! *laugh*

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After the Red Moments WL I hit the dusky and that’s when I realized that there was a storm experience built into the sim.  Turn to local WL, turn up graphics, and turn up your ambient noises.  *happy sigh*  This is the realization pic that there is something awesome going on…

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I finally got everything set and was so mesmerized I forgot to change pose even.  *grin* Gives me a chance to show off the killer Letis Tattoo I found while cleaning inventory the other night.  I lost that for a few months.  Anyway, check out the lightning, the sun beams poking through, the birds flying around the little stilt house, and the crashing waves.

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Back to the left is a cute little seating spot (which I also happen to have at home), where you can see the ramp leading to the ocean, the start of the beach, and really get a good view out into the storm clouds.

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Down on the beach were several seating areas.  While listening and watching I felt a bit nostalgic for those annual trips to the ocean, plus, it kind of mirrored how my mind and heart have felt lately with all of the roller coaster emotions.  When I found this pose I sat back and did the same thing.  Closed my eyes, bowed my head, and listened.  I threw every fear, financial worry, and swirling emotions out into the raging storm, and I let them rage until the weight lifted.  Maybe that’s what I missed most from my youthful trips to the ocean.  I always sat and mentally threw my problems into the ocean, and let them be wild, and when I picked up the last of them at the end of the day my heart and mind would be calm again.  I forget to lay down my problems to The Maker and instead I pray for strength to keep managing or learn to control.  I forgot to turn over my emotions to Him and tried to get help to be a strong fighter, when we’re doing His work.  He is giving us the chance to find and love someone without a forever home, and is arranging for us to find her.  Thank you, Aunt Ina, for helping me remember.  I was blessed to learn about this sim at just the right time.

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Curled up in the chair with the storm raging in front of Bre and I, I found some peace.

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Fundraising in SL

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Since I’ve had fundraising and donations on my mind lately, debating what may work in a small town and with my not being able to campaign in person, I’ve been a little more aware than usual about SL fundraisers.  I have attended a ton in the years I’ve been on.  Relay for Life is one of the main ones I go to on a regular basis and then one for a friend to raise money to get her trained medical assistance dog.  There are always fundraisers going on and what’s really cool is just how generous people can be.  The exchange rate for a Linden (SL currency) is 1 USD for 250L (lindens – currently; the exchange rate fluctuates).  With such a wide exchange rate, people don’t usually bat an eye at dropping 2500-5000L when it’s a touching need.    Although it’s a relatively small donation in USD, there is massive exposure, so a person can get some true help, and it’s awesome to read the stories about how the donations helped.

 

Anyway, I went to two this past week and one the week before.  One was a Sci-fi themed Relay for Life event and another was a group of designers that got a silent auction together to help a friend designer who is facing some very scary medical costs and issues.

 

This is a shop during Fantasy Faire with some donations for the American Cancer Society.  I’m absolutely fascinated by this designer’s artistic ways of bringing beauty into SL.  I bought the light systems, except for the rays of light coming down on the left side.  *scratches neck self consciously* I’m kind of obsessed with the designer right now and am slowly buying a lot of their artistic decorations to incorporate into our second lives.  Plus, this looks like the perfect place for fairies to jump from star to star or angels to hover in pure beauty while watching over their ward.  *sigh*  I absolutely love the artistic creativity in SL just as much as the generosity.

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Then I hit the Sci-Fi Relay for Life.  I’ll confess and you can throw tomatoes at me (I’ll bring the spices and we’ll have a mild salsa), but I generally prefer Star Trek and The Orville-type versions and not the Star Wars kind.  I don’t know why, but just recently discovered this.  I still usually really enjoy this event and the “space” creativity is so much fun.  This year just didn’t have the same feel for me, but I’m hoping it was really successful.  I got a few fun space-based poses and props from a favorite designer that was donating part of her proceeds, but mostly I just appreciated the designs.  There were space ships flying all over, but I somehow never got a good shot.  I actually sat in the diner and used my cam to explore that area of the sim, honestly.  The designer did an amazing job on the detail.  Plus, there were wolves walking around in Next Gen uniforms and that was a community that I am not very knowledgeable and sound like a freak when I try to make small talk.  *facepalm*

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I have several pictures of the event for the sick designer.  It really hit home that her body has turned against her and is killing her if she can’t get the money together to have a special procedure.  With all of my health issues, I cried a few times while reading the explanation and seeing the pics of her avi that an SL photographer took to sell for donations.  The photographer made sure that there was one very broken type, while all of the others were incredibly empowering and optimistic, and very phoenix rising from the flames.  Ugh, I’m going to have to stare at the ceiling if I write much more.  Anyway, it was a neat silent auction and the extra venue they had (which was empty because it wasn’t event time, thankfully, since I’ve been extra introverted even on SL lately) was so nostalgic, although I’m not THAT old to have caught it the first go around.  So Z, no smart mouth comments about my age and nostalgia.  I’m not over 40 yet, so don’t start. *laugh*   It did, however, remind me of all of the Soda Shop Oldies infomercials that still play now, with clips of the singers in the beautiful venues, which I watched with my parents throughout the years (and listened to).  All sexy Rat Pack-kind of beauty.  So I actually hung out at the venue for the beautiful scenery as I cleaned up some of my latest inventory.

 

First though, I couldn’t resist bidding for a live performance by a country singer on SL.  Have I mentioned that I love how I can hear singers, thespians, authors, and musicians perform around the world even when I’m in pillow city to ease the pain?  I took a moment to utilize their hay area pose to chill and cam around for some other things to bid on.

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This is the auction area on the left, with the concert venue on the right, which is where I hung out for a few hours.

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I bought a lot of 100% proceed items and straight up donated to the nearby tip jar, and kept Bre in the praying position, so we could both offer a prayer for this bright soul who is looking at a young death if this doesn’t work.  My practical part of the brain was screaming about needing to save and be humble enough to ask for help, too, but my soul needed that, especially with all of the turmoil for the last few months.

 

Gaming tends to have such a bad reputation, but I hope this helps someone change their mind and see that there are some incredibly generous people who are helping people they will never meet in person.  In what some would say is just a game.  I’m proud to be part of this other world that reflects all of us.  You can find more edgy pursuits if you want to, but there are so many incredible people to support, meet, and even appreciate their talents.  It was really beautiful to go to three fundraisers within mere days and see the amazing generosity.  Sometimes all you can see is the bad and what needs reform when you look at the world.  I’m thankful to be part of another world that is huge, but has a small village, “we look after our own”, atmosphere in some places.

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