A couple of weeks ago Chantelle and I surprised Jessica by taking her to Game and letting her choose a new bicycle.
She had outgrown her first bicycle and to be honest, being a second hand buy, it was a bit tired by now – in fact, one of the pedals had even come off the other day! (Not to mention the hard plastic wheels that were now completely devoid of all grip!)
So with the old one out it made sense to get her something a bit bigger and better – which is exactly why I was more than happy to part with my R1,100 and return home with a beautiful purple and white, 16 inch Raleigh kids’ bicycle – accompanied with a bright pink cycle helmet to finish off the ensemble.
Well, when I say returned home with, I do of course mean I arrived home with a big cardboard box, which stayed on the dining room table for a day or two before I finally gathered enough strength to open the box, spill out is contents, and attempt to assemble a bicycle.
(Surprisingly, this took me longer than expected – I had some trouble lining up the brakes).
Of course, we immediately needed to take it out for a test drive, and pleasingly a beaming, unable-to-contain-her-excitement, Jessica was more than happy to oblige.
In fact, all the friends around the complex quickly got wind of what we were up to thanks to us tearing about the complex at high speed (seriously, all of a sudden Jessica is rather quick on her two wheels), and soon everyone was in on the fun!
So yeah, I’d definitely say that this was a successful purchase for the Lotter clan! Now I guess the next step is for her to become confident enough that we can start thinking about ditching those side wheels of hers…
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This Christmas holiday Chantelle and I were adamant to get something for Jessica to play outside with, you know, to encourage her to play more instead of just sitting down to watch My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic whenever the opportunity presents itself.
Slides, swings, trampolines, they were all on our shortlist, before Chantelle and I finally decided that perhaps a kid’s plastic playhouse would be just the ticket that we were looking for. Jess always runs in and plays in a playhouse given half a chance, so perhaps she’d absolutely love having one of her own.
So we started shopping around, and came across a very nice looking one from Keter at Game for R1,799. White, pink, with a chicken on top and a pony pasted on the door, it seemed too good to be true! I made the decision there and then to buy the playhouse for her at the start of her holiday instead of waiting until Christmas, meaning that she would therefore have the maximum amount of playtime in it available to her over the vacation period.
Consequently, while she was out on her last day at Vergeet-My-Nie playschool, I nipped out to Game, handed over the money, and somehow managed to squeeze the rather big box in my little Hyundai Getz.
Back home I set about the assembly phase of the project, and I have to say, hats of to the guys at Keter (made in Israel by the way) – this is a very well thought out, well manufactured, and easy to assemble kit.
In no time at all, with the help of a detailed instructions booklet, I had the sturdy (relatively) little plastic structure up, complete with oh so cute ladybug roofclips and rooster weathervane sitting snuggly on top! (No screws, hammer, or screwdriver required).
I put a nice soft blanket on the floor, pulled in her chair with some books, and arranged all the ponies as a colourful welcoming committee.
Jessica was of course super duper excited when she arrived home, and immediately played in it for the next day or two, but sadly that’s where our plan failed, or rather as far as it went – those two initial days were pretty much the last thought she gave to the structure for the rest of the holiday! :/
I think the answer lies in the fact that on its own, the playhouse is just a shell, and without anything inside to make it more of a house, well then there just isn’t all that compelling a reason to play inside.
After all, it’s much cooler and with more space just to play in our actual home!
So the next step for Chantelle and myself I guess is to start looking around for kitchen toys to populate it with. Hopefully that will spark the interest that we originally had so hoped to ignite.
Oh well, live and learn I suppose, live and learn.
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Bonus! On another related note, my heart literally sank a week after buying the playhouse – I was out shopping at Checkers Hyper and spotted the exact same whimsical pink and white Keter playhouse selling for… R1,299 – a full R500 cheaper than what I had just paid at Game less than a week earlier!
Thankfully though, enough people quickly reminded me of Game’s awesome policy whereby they will refund you the difference in purchase price if you spot something you just purchased cheaper elsewhere within a given time limit, meaning that the R500 was swiftly recovered and then spent on some more Christmas gifts for the girls!
Related Link: http://www.keter.com/products/magic-playhouse
Konami’s 2004 all girl wrestling game Rumble Roses introduced a diverse cast of female competitors, each with a good persona and a bad persona (face and heel if you like the proper wrestling terminology).
Today’s cosplay entry sees Japanese cosplayer Akira Itsuki dons her bikini and opts to bring to life wrestler Aigle, boots and all!
A member of a nomadic minority living on the great plains of Mongolia, Aigle’s father and brother are both grand champions in Mongolian Sumo. Just like her father and brother, Aigle too possesses great strength and she joins the Rumble Roses tournament in order to prove to them that she is also a great warrior.
However, because of her slightly under-developed body, she is a bit lacking in self-esteem and has a bit of a running gag in comparing the big boobs of her competitors to the teats of the sheep she tended back home!
As for her heel persona, not realising that being a noble warrior is for more difficult than what it sounds, Aigle starts to commit fouls and cheat more, and in order not to be ridiculed by her father or brother, she adopts the name of Great Khan with the plan of conquering the world.
Japanese cosplayer Ahane dons the colorful clothes of Ulala, the top reporter for Space Channel 5. Armed with her trusty microphone and twin guns, Ulala likes nothing best than when the ratings are high!
(From the music video game Space Channel 5 by Sega in case you were wondering)
Related Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Channel_5
Now armed with an Android powered 10 inch tablet all of my own, one of the first games I installed turned out to be the thoroughly entertaining Aces of the Luftwaffe, from developer HandyGames.
If you remember the awesome coin-swallowing arcade game from the ’80s, 1942, then you know exactly what lies in store for you from the enjoyable Aces of the Luftwaffe, a vertically scrolling shoot ’em up that puts you in the seat of an heroic Allied fighter plane, taking on horde after horde of evil Axis fighters.
As expected from this genre, the pace is relentless and the action non-stop, not to mention the insane difficulty that comes with the territory of a screen filled with slow moving projectile bullets! Of course the usual power drops of wingmen, scatter shots and machine gun are there to aid you, as well as a clever little ‘super’ which amounts to a cavalry rush that obliterates everything on screen.
The game is released as a free to play and is ad supported, though as expected one can make the purchase to remove the adverts. Leveling up of various aspects of your plane is possible, and in the same breadth, you can always choose to speed up this process through in-app purchases.
Fun graphics, a good soundtrack and a well written game with a smooth handling interface means that Aces of the Luftwaffe is certainly one of those recommended titles to install if you’ve got some free space on your tablet!
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What I forgot to mention is that subsequent to buying the appliances, my father-in-law Monty scored me a rather big saving, putting a tidy little sum of money back into my pocket – and all by noting Game’s we’ll match any price policy!
They don’t usually make a big song and dance about it or advertise it in your face, but for years Game has had a policy whereby they’ll match the price of any good if you can find the same good for cheaper elsewhere, and similarly will refund you the difference if you find the good which you just purchased from them elsewhere for a lower price within 21 days of your purchase.
Now I didn’t even think of this, but Monty did, especially when he tracked down the dishwasher selling for R600 less at Tafelberg in Bellville. So off to Somerset Mall we went, and while I was keeping young Jessica entertained, Chantelle and Cheryl approached the help desk, waited as they called through to verify Tafelberg’s price, and then refunded the R600 onto my credit card.
Seriously awesome little bonus and definitely something I’ll keep in mind when making future big purchases from Game! :)
Batman: Arkham Asylum was a phenomenal game (apart from the plant segments) and definitely remains a must play game on any comic book gamer’s list. Whilst most of the characters retained their classic costumes, Harley Quinn showed up for a laugh in this uber sexy purple and red nurse outfit, which must have been such a hit that it was revisited (with even less cloth!) when DC later launched their major reboot, dubbed the New 52, and dragged her into the new incarnation of Suicide Squad.
Anyway, American cosplayer Sophia Lancaster, grabbed a gun and decided to give us a little tease by bringing to life the new red and purple nurse version of Harley Quinn – to great effect I might add! :)
Popular blonde American cosplayer Jessica Nigri (who grew up in New Zealand of all awesome places), dons the revealing cheerleader outfit and picks up the bloodied chainsaw of Juliet Starling, star of the Grasshopper Manufacture’s Zombie hunting video game, Lollipop Chainsaw!
Lollipop Chainsaw focuses on zombie hunter and cheerleader Juliet Starling (voiced by Tara Strong) who, along with members of her family and her boyfriend Nick, a disembodied head, fight hordes of zombies in San Romero High School, where Starling formerly cheered.
The enemy zombies are led by “a group of zombie rock and roll lords”, the outbreak of which has been caused by Juliet’s former classmate, an evil goth sorcerer named Swan.
So remember that big exciting SurveyThumb Project 161 Touchwork project I mentioned here once or twice? While like I have previously noted, the culmination of that work project resulted in a nice little bonus being added to the end of my salary last month, a bonus which both Chantelle and I agreed should be put straight to use on her little soon not to be a side only project, Chantelle’s Cookies & Cakes.
After discussing it for a bit, we decided to put some of the money aside for the purchase of marketing material, and the rest be used on additional appliances for the house, in a move to try and lend Chantelle some assistance in getting things done.
And pleasingly, last Friday saw the delivery of our two newly purchased appliances from Game in Somerset Mall – a Bosch dishwasher and a KIC 346l fridge!
Exciting I know.
Anyway, now all that is left is for Monty to tackle the project of removing some of our limited kitchen cupboard space in return for a nifty hole in which the dishwasher can slot in next to the washing machine.
And oh yes, if there is any of the bonus left after that, then there is still this pretty cool dark stained pine bookshelf Chantelle is pretty keen on adding to the braai room pantry setup…