Monday, January 27, 2014

Gluug is 90!!

Yesterday my DK Gluug turned 90.  He is my first level 90 character in World of Warcraft.

It was an awesome feeling of achievement, followed by a bunch of confusion about what to do next.  Not a lot of time to write today, but I just wanted to give Gluug his moment in the Sun.  I'm only half way to my Loremaster of Pandaria achievement so I still have half of the MoP content to work through.  But at least now I can tag along when AIE does a flex raid.  Cheers!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Chuckem in AIE

Well I did a few new things in WoW over the last few days and I thought you might be interested.  Specifically because they involve the original Lord of Assets, Chuckem.  I had not played Chuckem in a long while, mainly because my old guild on Demon Soul had basically died so there were not many players on.  I did manage to get Chuckem to level 85 after Cata but I just kind of stopped playing him because I didn't like playing without anybody on guild chat.  I had moved on to playing Gluug with AIE.

Anyway, I realm transferred Chuckem to Earthen Ring where my other toons are already in AIE so I could play him there.  This has caused me to fall in love with my mage all over again.  I have been playing Chuckem non-stop since the transfer and I'm loving every second of it.  As you can see Chuckem joined alea iacta est audacia and is now a proud member of the largest guild in the United States.  There are always plenty of people in guild chat.

Interestingly enough, I'm not taking Chuckem to Pandaria to level to 90.  I was struck by the same news about Warlords of Draenor dropping sometime in 2014 and hearing that Blizzard is going back to rework Outlands.  I have always had the Loremaster achievement in the back of my mind as I have been leveling my alts and now I'm suddenly afraid that it will not be possible to get Outlands Loremaster after WoD drops.  So I'm challenging Chuckem to cover all the old content in Outlands, Northrend and post-cata Azeroth for my Loremaster achievement.  I think finishing these quest lines will get him to level 90 without ever having to step foot into Pandaria.  I'm already in the middle of Pandaria with Gluug so I'm going to have him complete the Loremaster there and I have some lower-level alts who can finish up the 1-60 content of Azeroth for me (I did double check that you can spread Loremaster out on many characters so that is my current plan).

I have been through Outlands twice already, on Chuckem and Gluug, but this time I'm going back to do it all.  I completed the 84 quests in Hellfire Peninsula for that achievement over the weekend.  I'm now in Terokkar Forest working on that achievement. This will not only earn me the Outlands Loremaster achievement but also will familarize myself with Draenor and it's Lore for when WoD dropps later this year.  I'll keep you posted.  Cheers!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Read: Fear and Loathing

There is a great little blog post over on Amateur Azerothian called Fear And Loathing In Pandaria.  I really enjoyed it because it is honest about something most MMO gamers have experienced, bringing an alt through content you have already played.  I can relate since I have rolled several alternate characters on WoW and have struggled to bring them through certain zones like the Barrens.  I to found MoP visually stunning but found a lack of interest to push through to the end.  Thematically, I should have loved Pandaria since it incorporates many cultural nods that I usually enjoy.  Anyway, check it out.  Cheers!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

I've done something...

I have done something bad, or maybe good, but something I have not done in awhile.  I re-subbed for World of Warcraft.  This on the heals of changing the direction of my blog away from it's MMO roots, I went and subscribed to the MMO that started it all.  Let me be clear, I'm not changing Lord of Assets back to a MMO blog, but I thought it was worth noting.

So it started when my 7-year old daughter kept asking me to play that game on my computer where she could make a person and explore.  I have spent several hours with my daughter just flying around on my mounts and showing her Azeroth.  I had not played in almost a year, and I was not looking to subscribe again so I created a new "free to level 20" account for her to use.  Having a free account obviously comes with some restrictions.  The most important of which is that she didn't have access to my wealthy level 85 characters and their many different mounts.

Starting at level 1 again, with no money and little ability for transportation was a bit restrictive for me.  We did play for several hours but mainly just walked around the starting zone and leveled slowly from level 1 to level 5.  This was enough to make me nostalgic for my high level characters who I had not seen in almost a year.  It's sort of like catching up with an old friend you haven't talked to in a long time.

I contacted a few guildies to have someone send me a Scroll of Resurrection so I could take advantage and get 1 character boosted to level 80.  Unfortunately, I had not been away long enough to qualify for the Scroll.  After dreaming about which character I was going to boost for a few day (and then being let down when I found out I couldn't) I bit the bullet and forked over my 15 bucks.

No regrets here, I have maybe spent 5-6 hours in-game at this point trying to get to know my characters again as well as re-learning their abilities.  I still don't have a level 90, so that is on my to-do list, but I actually found myself spending the most time with a level 25 priest who was left in Ashenvale.  I will be getting back to playing Gluug in MoP but for now I'm just leveling away with my troll priest Dachuck in Earthen Ring.  He is level 28 now, by the way.  Cheers!

P.S.  It's my birthday today.  The Lord of Assets is now 33.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

2014 Goal 3

My 3rd goal of 2014 is to eat better.  I have a few different ideas about this, but the most important of these is to get more nutrients that I usually consume.  Let me preface this by saying that I'm clearly not an expert on healthy eating or on weight loss as I have struggles with both throughout my life.  My intentions with this goal are to become healthier than I was in 2013 by giving my body more good things that it needs and eliminating a few of the bad habits I have developed over the past decade.

The first part of this is to eat more fish than is usually in my diet.  I like fish, if prepared a certain way and I need to eat more.  I'm hoping that by eating more fish I will also eat less beef and pork.  I can't help it, I need to eat meat for it to feel like a meal.  But I'm trying to focus my eating to poultry and fish as they both are healthier and contain less of the bad things that are hurting my cholesterol.  

The second part of this is to take my vitamins more regularly.  It's not a huge step but I can't seem to remember to take them each day.  I have been tying to take a multivitamin daily for years with little regularity and in 2013 I started taking fish oil a few time a week (when I remembered).  With this goal I have started taking Spirulina tablets twice a day.  I have read a few articles that talked about the benefits of Spirulina and it seems like a smart thing to do.  

Basically, Spirulina is a natural multivitamin.  I read some bogus advertisement that was raving about the benefits of taking taking Spirulina daily as part of a shake made with vegetables to give you that extra boost.  But they were charging almost 100 dollars a month for the ingredients and I cannot afford that.  So I did a little research of my own and concluded that I could get a lot of the same benefits by just taking the supplements with green tea and vegetable juice.  So I'm currently taking 800 mg of Spirulina with 6 oz of green tea and 4 oz of blueberry and pomegranate juice.  It may not be as effective as the 100 dollar vegetable mix advertised but I feel confident that I'm getting most of the benefits for about 20% of the cost.

I have only been doing this for about 5 days now and I already feel better.  I'm not sure if it is a placebo effect at this point, but I'll keep you posted as many of the articles promised a great boost of energy after 2 weeks on Spirulina.  Cheers!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Princess and the Toad

My daughter and I drew and colored this together over a couple of snow days we both had from school last week.  I drew Luigi, she drew Princess and we did Toad together.  I thought she did a really good job with Princess as she has graduated from stick people to drawing people with arms, legs and bodies.  My daughter has really gotten into Mario lately and she always plays Princess, mommy plays Luigi and I play Toad.

Friday, January 10, 2014

What does it mean to be the Lord of Assets?

The LoA blog has went through some changes over the last 4 years.  What started out as a blog about MMO gaming and how to be a helpful part of a guild has transformed into a place for me to talk about my interests.  I have always had a lot of hobbies and I like to share them with others.  After all, how fun is a board-game is there is nobody around willing to play it with you.

That is really what drove me to video games in the first place.  Not having people around to play D&D or HeroQuest with.  Not that I didn't have good friends who introduced both of those to me when I was young, but that there were hours on end when my friends were busy and I needed to entertain myself.  Since I was little, I have always taken a bag of "things-to-do" with me whenever I go on a trip.  Usually, the packing of this bag takes more time and attention than packing the clothes I'm going to wear or the supplies I need for the trip.  I was always afraid of being stuck somewhere with nothing to do.

I have always been a collector, what I collect has changed over the years but if you can collect it I'm usually interested.  I have an uncontrollable need to complete sets or runs and will usually devote a ridiculous amount of time to tracking down rare and out-of-print issues or editions.  This started with comics and baseball cards (although I'm not sure which once came first).  It has spread to coins, books, video games, graphic novels and many other variations of each.  More recently is has possessed me to try and complete digital collection of objects I can't physically hold or consume.  When I played WoW it was quests, achievements and tier gear.  My comic collection has moved digital, just like my music collection did 10 years ago.  I collect dimes, dating back almost 100 years from both the Denver, Philadelphia and occasionally San Francisco mint.  This lead me collect silver bullion and now even digital currencies like Bitcoin.  As you can see, it is a sickness.

So when I started this blog back in 2010 I was talking about my position as accountant of our guild's digital goods.  But since I don't play WoW anymore I figured I could use this small piece of digital real-estate to talk about my various collections of both physical and digital goods, irl.  I have plans to update my meager following about the things I'm interested in and maybe introduce some of you to your next great hobby.  That's all this is, me sharing the things I find interesting.  That way, if you find yourself stuck somewhere without your "things-to-do" bag you can read this and discover something new.  Cheers!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

2014 Goal 4

To make this more exciting, for me at least, I going to go through my goals for 2014 in countdown style starting with goal 4.  The 4th goal on my list is to exercise more.  I have made this goal before, and it usually works for a week or 2, but eventually I fall of the wagon.  Most of the time because the repetition of the same exercise or because I'm too tired when I get home at night.

My solution for this is to make my exercise yoga.  This works for me in a couple of different ways.  First, I can do it quickly and at home without any additional equipment or having to go to a gym somewhere.  My plan is to do 15-20 minutes of yoga in the morning before I get ready for work.  I'm starting with the Sun Salute which has roughly 12 steps and only takes 20 minutes.  

Second, yoga can be used as a way to wake up your body in the morning.  Typically, when I do yoga I fell better afterwords, not worse like when I go running or lift.  I think is has something to do with stretching out my back.  

In my New Years post I mentioned that any goal needs to me specific and measurable.  This will help to set guidelines for what counts as exercise and keep me on track.  But I have been bit by this before so I also want to make sure that I can achieve my goal each week and there is a built in way to catch up if I get behind.  So my goal is pretty simple.  

2 hours of yoga each week.  My plan is to do 20 minutes a day, 6 days a week, to achieve this goal.  If I can manage getting up every morning a little early to do the sun salute then all I will need to do on the weekends is 20 minutes.  But if I miss a few days here and there is should be easy enough to do one longer session on the weekend to make up the difference.  Whether it is 20 minutes, on 6 different days or 60 minutes twice a week this would be more exercise than I did on average in 2013 and would count as more exercise.

Why yoga?  Mainly because it is relaxing and it helps my back feel better.  For my beginning experience level yoga is basically fancy stretching and breathing but there is a lot of articles that state it can be used for muscle growth and toning as well so hopefully I'll work towards that eventually.  In Kino MacGregor's post A Beginner's Guide to Yoga she states that Yoga is a door to a state of harmony that would otherwise get lost amidst the buzzing of emails, video chats, text messages and another level on Angry Birds.  This really speaks to me.

If I can find more time to exercise in the week I plan to run, bike, do some push-ups or crunches and maybe swim.  But all of those activities would be in addition to my 120 minutes of yoga each day.  The yoga is start my day out positively and refreshed as well getting in a habit of daily exercise.  This week I have already done 3 days of yoga totaling about 60 minutes.  I'll keep you updated on my progress here on the LoA blog.  Cheers!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Happy New Year!!

Is January 8th to late to write a New Year's Resolution?  I don't think so, but it is in my characteristic 'Chuck' style to do something a little late.  My wife always says that people shouldn't wait until a new year to improve themselves.  While I see the logic in that, I sometimes need a little push to get change going.  It seems to me that a new year is a great time to start over as I can put all the mistakes of 2013 behind me and begin to focus on 2014.  I guess this view may also come from the fact that I'm a teacher.  I'm constantly starting over; each year, each semester, every quarter and 7 times a day as each new class begins.

So here are a few of my goals for 2014.

1) To write more, and post more things, on my blog here at Lord of Assets.

2) To draw more.

3) To eat more healthy foods.

4) To exercise more.

Now my many years in bureaucracy have taught me that goals are meaningless until they are specific and measurable.  To help with goal 1, I'm going to dedicate a post to each goal and spend more time being specific about how I plan to meet each goal and how I plan to measure my progress.  For that, you are going to have to wait for my next post.  Until then, have a great day.  Cheers!