Happy Birthday Animal Crossing! It has been twenty years since the original game, Animal Forest (Dōbutsu no Mori), was released in Japan! I wrote a post back in September celebrating the 18th Anniversary of the North American release and my memories of the game.
Animal Crossing has been a HUGE part of my life, so I will take any reason to celebrate it! To join in the festivities, I wanted to share an update on my island since it’s been a FULL YEAR (!) since Animal Crossing New Horizons was released and I shared my last tour, so of course. A lot has changed on Cupcake Island! 2020 was a weird year for me so I played heavily after it was released, and then was just not motivated at ALL between June and November. Then December hit, and I haven’t really put my Switch down since!
My goal was make to island that’s tasty enough to eat! So Cupcake is filled with colourful sweets, chocolate, islands of ice cream, mountains of cake, gumdrop dunes, and my house is the cherry on top of the big name-sake cupcake in the middle! It’s a bit chaotic, but it makes me happy! 🙂 Here’s a little photo tour of the sugary sights…
And some of the highlights of the last year:
So there we go, my little happy place! Feel free to come and visit my Dream Address!
Hope you have all enjoyed a super sweet February filled with floating hearts, delicious candies, and lots of love for yourself! Here were some of my favourite things over the past 28 lovely days.
TV Shows: The Office (US) – finally gave this one a go after apparently my coworkers have been relentlessly quoting this for years and I’ve been clueless! It looks dry and muted and WAY too much like my real office so maybe that’s what’s been keeping me away! It’s a fake docu-comedy like Parks & Rec, which is one of my favourites – and it’s a surprisingly nice escape for a show about well… office life!
Music: I’ve been on an indie-pop kick again and have been getting back into some of my favourite bands from 2013-ish like CHVRCHES, Bastille, Hurts, and Florence + the Machine… One of my current on repeats:
Food: Still eating vegan and LOVING IT! I would love to start being even more conscious about what I’m eating and make sure it’s sustainable and cruelty-free. My favourite go-to meals lately are this super Saucy Ramen Noodle recipe and vegan pizza – which uses soy cheese.
Video Games: Pokemon Shield ~ it honestly took me a really long time to get used to the play style and how linear the storyline is. But after a year, I’ve fallen in LOVE with it! It has amazing graphics (I know other people would beg to differ), and plays really well on the Switch’s tv features.
Purchases: Funko has released retro Barbie Funko Pops of three of the most popular Barbie dolls from the 80s. They are way too cute for words! Can’t wait for mine to ship because they will fit right in here at my little pink house!
Yesterday Pokemon celebrated its 25th year of existence. Yes, TWENTY-FIVE YEARS with those colourful little pocket monsters – you read that right!
I wanted to share my own little journey of becoming a Pokemon Master as it’s been such a huge part of who I became.
Our journey back begins in 1998! A brand new anime show called Pokemon aired on a tv network called YTV here in Canada and it was all the rage around the playground. Soon the Pokemon card fad blew up and we brought our massive, perfectly categorized binders to the schoolyard and learned all about the cutthroat world of business and trade. It was a wild time, and they were soon banned! But that was my first foray into geek-culture and lifelong friendships started thanks to the PokeWorld.
The next summer (1999), I went to my friends’ cottage on a beautiful idyllic lake. She had just got a new game – Pokemon Red – for her birthday so what did we do? Play inside for a week straight on her tiny Original Gameboy (not even a Gameboy Color – just a standard, black and white Gameboy!) Don’t even think we left the cottage. 🙂 I soon got my own Pokemon Color and started my own journey. I picked Squirtle my first go and we travelled around Kanto, letting nothing get in our way! Except for the pesky Rock Tunnel… still have strong memories of the couple of weeks I was stuck in there… *shudders!*
From that first adventure on the Gameboy, the franchise and my obsession only grew. There now EIGHT generations of the game with almost 1000 different Pokemon in total, spinoff games like Pokemon Snap (90s kid Instagram) and Pokemon Go, shows and movies, toys, and the list goes on!
I can also thank Pokemon for being the thing that inspired me to get creative! My favourite characters were easy to turn into drawings (my parents must have had to hang a million pictures of Pokemon on the fridge!), knits, felties, and delicious treats!
It doesn’t seem like it’s been 20+ years since I was first introduced to Pokemon. I definitely didn’t imagine that I’d still be talking about Pikachu and pals as a 31 year old, surrounded by plushies and games. But I’m so glad I am.
Here’s to 25 more years. I promise I’ll still be playing when I’m old and on my rocker! 🙂
I have seen a number of posts of people sharing their top games from 2020, and thought I would participate as well! 2020 was an ideal kind of gaming year: stuck inside with nothing but time and looking for a good escape.
I’ll admit, I didn’t really leave my “bubble” games wise, opting for some old reliable friends (nope, no crazy shoot-em-up apocalypse for me last year ;)).
Here’s what I played New Releases~
Animal Crossing New Horizons ~ obviously my most anticipated game of the year, and it didn’t disappoint! I would have enjoyed it no matter what, but escaping to a sunny island of happy animals during a raging pandemic made ACNH just a little bit more special. I love open-ended games with no pressure, and this helped me escape into a world of my very own.
Stardew Valley ~ I started playing Stardew on election night to distract myself a bit… It’s a farming simulator game much like Harvest Moon, but has a bit more a “mature” feeling to it. While it’s somewhat similar to Animal Crossing where you get to live a new life, there are more required tasks needed to accomplish more rigid goals (eg. farming, marriage, etc). But the graphics and music are beautiful and an incredibly calming game when you need a distraction from the real worlds’ craziness!
Pokemon Sword/Shield ~ The newest generation in the line of Pokemon video games, which was released at the tail end of 2019. I have been sitting on a draft post FOREVER about my opinions on the newer Pokemon games, but I will keep my opinions to myself for now… I really only started getting into the game at the very end of the year, but so far it is a vast improvement from Sun/Moon. The graphics are beautiful (especially the architecture of the towns!) and it has a very open feel. And of course one of my favourite Pokemon, Alcremie, who is a pile of whipped cream, was introduced.
Final Fantasy VIII Remaster ~ not a new game per se, but instead it is a remastered version of Playstation’s 1999 Final Fantasy VIII now released for the Switch with upgraded graphics. The game was a bit overshadowed by Final Fantasy VII, which was an actual remake and a much more popular title in the series, but it’s definitely worth checking out. The Junction system still remains a struggle, but if you can figure it out (pay attention to the tutorials!) the storyline and music are definitely worth it.
Pokemon Pearl ~ I usually revert back to the older generations of Pokemon, Generation 4 being a favourite! Journeying through Sinnoh is so comforting and I could replay this version a million times and not get bored. Forever hoping for a proper remake *hint Nintendo!*
Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure ~ I have some great memories of playing this Playstation game with my cousins in the early 2000s. It’s basically what it says on the tin: a pure adorable sappy video game slash musical! There are singing and dancing cats, frogs, and pirates, and a girl has to rescue a prince from a erm… rather well-endowed Evil Queen. It’s just sugary, simple, FUN that was perfect for a year like last year. To add to the fun, it comes with a soundtrack of the songs from the game. Here’s a taste of the music from the game!
Today’s challenge is a day in my life! So I kept my camera with me all day to show you what I typically get up to. I absolutely LOVED this as it makes you realize how much you do actually accomplish and help you capture tiny moments you may otherwise not think about. So here we go!~