A lot of rambling, especially about World of Warcraft in a Tree's point of view.

Latest

on my first week and i love every single

on my first week and i love every single day of garcinia cambogia 🙂 http://ow.ly/nouJ3

Advertisements

Want the fast trick to lose weight? Try

Want the fast trick to lose weight? Try garcinia cambogia =D http://ow.ly/nov8u

Trading My Staff for a Famas

I never thought that this would happen.  Oh sure, I’ve put World of Warcraft aside plenty of times, for many reasons.  And yes, even for other games.  But…I never thought that it would be for THIS game.

I don’t play FPS games.  I have never enjoyed nor could get the hang of them.  The closest to an FPS that I have played AND enjoyed was Bioshock.  I would say that counts.  It’s in first person and you shoot stuff, the simplest definition.  I think because I played it on PC that it felt easy and not so FPS-y.  I also played Oblivion in first person, but…well that game is altogether different.  I’ve also had a few runs in  Quake III on slow Fridays at the office with co-workers.  That might be the only game in that list that technically counts as an FPS, arena style, of course.  But still, I never imagined playing or enjoying THIS game…

Yes, I’m talking about Call of Duty: Black Ops, for Xbox.

My close friends, whom I have clocked countless WoW hours with, have been big fans of the CoD franchise for years.  Every time a new game comes out, they devote at least 2 weeks to that game alone.  And every time, they’ve tried to get my husband and I to join.  My husband actually bought CoD 4 shortly after its release, but never really got into playing online.  Between the cost of Xbox Live and our shitty wireless router at the time, it just wasn’t worth it.

The Famas

After CoD Black Ops (or simply “Blops”) was out for a while, and our friends had prestiged a few times, we finally picked up the game.  The game and Xbox Live were both on sale, making it tough to pass up.  I played as a guest to my husband’s player for about a week and realized I was hooked.  To my complete surprise, I was genuinely addicted like I get with my favorite RPGs.  So, luckily Xbox Live was still running a promotion…

I have never played a game that caused me to shout so many profanities, while still having so much fun, like Blops does.  No, I don’t always know quite what gun to use, and sometimes I opt for the infamous “Noob-Tube” attachment, but there’s a lot of camaraderie when running into unknown danger with your teammates, armed and ready to unload a few rounds into the enemy, or sneak up and slit a few throats.

I miss healing, shape-shifting, and magic…but, guns really are a lot of fun.

This Cow Says “OOM”

My group of friends and I have all hit 85 and recently gotten our item level up to (and beyond) the minimum of 329 to run heroic dungeons.  What I have learned after attempting two different heroics is that just because you’ve hit the minimum does not mean you’re ready.  My item level might be where the game says it needs to be to walk into the door of the instance, but my stats certainly are not where they need to be.

As it stands, my friends don’t seem to be having the same problem I am having.  My main issue is mana.  After replacing my last piece of Wrath gear, I took a major hit to my mana pool as I sacrificed a great deal of Intellect for Mastery.  I’m not entirely sure I should have done that just yet, but it did get my item level to 329.  But that brings me back to my original point: should one trade needed stats for item level?

It’s just like how I mentioned in my last post that my Gearscore was suffering with the new gear I was picking up.  I wasn’t going to keep old gear just because my numbers were going down.  Right now, my Gearscore is just under 7k after replacing all of my Wrath pieces, which is about a 1200-point increase.  So maybe I shouldn’t be worried about my item level just yet; it will happen as I pick up good gear.

My plan?  Grind regular dungeons for rep and collect gear from the new factions.  The tank in our group already has a few “purples” from doing that (lucky for me, that makes him easier to heal).  The new heroics are hard enough with learning the fights, coordinating them, and staying alive in general, without having mana issues.

So, Intellect is the #1 stat for Resto Druids now, and I see why.  Whether it’s an endurance fight, or a high damage fight, a mana pool of 80k or more is probably ideal.  I was around 73k (unbuffed) before I swapped out that trinket, leaving me with roughly 67k, so I have a ways to go before I’ll feel I have the ability to heal us through a heroic.

Once I have adequate mana and complete a heroic, I will have an update.  Until then, this cow is saying “oooooom!”

Tauren OOMing

Aren't cows supposed to say "moo"...?

Cataclysm Killed My Tree

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged, and even longer since I’ve rambled on about World of Warcraft.  But, of course, I got Cataclysm right away and have been playing [casually] since.  I am a few bars into 84 and expect to hit 85 this weekend.  So far, I love it.  Love the new areas, the flying, all the cinematics, the quests, and I even may or may not have played a Worgen to level 5…(best starting quest line EVER).  I haven’t yet played a Goblin, but I did create my little Finkelsteen.

Another thing I’m loving are the new 5-man dungeons.  The bosses are technical and fun to figure out.  And at first, it was easy.  My irl pals and I 4-manned the dungeon in Blackrock with no trouble at all, with no new gear.  I have to say, I was feeling pretty L337.  That was, until, I started picking up new gear.

I was resistant to trading my “Purples” for “Greens”, but the item levels and stats couldn’t be argued with.  My Gear Score has been fluctuating, but I’m thinking it’s sort of flawed until getting higher level gear.  The one thing I noticed right away with my new pieces is that Intellect and Stamina are high, and Spirit is almost nonexistent.  Haste is here and there, which I try to go for.  Or at least, I was.  With the changes to my healing spells, I figured I needed more haste to use Nourish and Regrowth effectively.  I was happy to see a lot of the new gear I was picking up had an increase in haste for me.  But, before long, I was ooming near the end of every large encounter.  I know these are new dungeons and they are supposed to be difficult, but it’s still frustrating.  I was relying on Spirit to regenerate my mana during fights, but now I have a large mana pool that gets zapped very quickly.  I think one thing I need to change is the way I heal.

I’m so used to keeping my group topped off in the Wrath dungeons, since they were so easy in the end, that I haven’t been able to let that go for these more difficult instances.  I have the natural reaction to heal anyone taking damage, and thus, my mana drops fast.  I know gear isn’t going to fix this problem for a long time.  So between the changes to my healing spells, stats, and new difficulty, I just need to relearn.  As I’m sure every Resto Druid is feeling right now, and has been for a while.

So, I will try to post updates as I learn more about being a Tree in Cataclysm.  Can I even still call myself a Tree?

Tauren Druid ToL Form

The Now Temporary Tree of Life Form

Weekend of ROCK!

Last weekend I went to the Uproar Tour in Chicago (Tinley Park) with my husband, my friend, and her boyfriend.  My only reason for going was to see Avenged Sevenfold, and since the tour didn’t make it to Michigan, we had to road-trip it to Chicago.  And actually, we figured that might make for a bigger show, since, well, no one wants to come to Michigan.  Many of the times I saw Avenged Sevenfold perform were at very small venues—with no room for pyrotechnics or elaborate stage antics.  Not to mention, I had never seen them at an outdoor venue.

We opted for actual seats at the amphitheater, after reading reviews online.  Lawn seats were cheap, but shitty.  Our seats were in the last row under the pavilion, with our backs to the walkway, and the lawn right behind that.  Those kids were crammed up against the gates like a herd of cattle getting ready to load onto the truck to the slaughterhouse.  And behind them, I’m not sure anyone could see.  Being in the last row had its benefits too.  The security guards shooed people away anytime someone came to stand behind us, which meant that not only would we not to deal with the random drunk people that kept sneaking up, but we also had the wide open space for the breeze to blow by.  And it was much needed.

Before we headed to our seats, we walked around the venue, looked at shirts, grabbed some beer and free Rockstar, and made our way to the Jagermeister stage to catch Hellyeah.  Hellyeah just might be the worst band I have ever seen.  Now, I wasn’t a fan of their music to begin with, just not my taste, but usually I can stand anything live, if the band puts on a good show.  Not only did I not enjoy the music, buy they were a bunch of assholes on stage.  The singer (I don’t even care what his name is) told the audience to punch people in the face if they saw anyone throw stuff.  He also said something about if anyone doesn’t know who they are, fuck you.  He also yelled at people who left the crowd before they were done, something along the lines of “Yeah I see you leaving, fuck you!”  Maybe someone should have reminded them that they were on the SMALL STAGE.  But, the fans ate that shit up.  Probably because they were a bunch of the trashiest white trash I have ever seen in my life.  I am not joking.  Hellyeah must support inbreeding or something for that kind of a crowd to exist.  For those of you who are fans, hopefully seeing that performance changed your mind, but I doubt it would.  If you are a fan and haven’t seen them yet, just put on your headphones and listen to their music, then head to Wal-Mart and just start yelling at random people to fuck off.  That’s pretty much it.

So after that experience, we wandered around a bit more, then headed to our seats to catch the last half of Halestorm’s performance.  Again, I wasn’t a huge fan, but they put on a good show, and the singer has a killer voice.  Their drummer was pretty badass as well.   I could appreciate their music.  Next was Stone Sour.  I don’t even remember the performance really, I must have been bored.  I just remember thinking, “Why are all these guys bald?”

And then there was Avenged Sevenfold.  They NEVER disappoint.  They came out strong and the crowd went insane.  From the hanging man during Nightmare to the flaming gates during Buried Alive, my heart raced the entire time.  The show was, of course, bittersweet.  Seeing Mike Portnoy was amazing, but my heart was broken to know it would never be The Rev up there again.  And when Critical Acclaim played and they got to the part where The Rev sings, I fuckin lost it.  I wasn’t even expecting to lose it.  Here I am singing along and I just fuckin choked on the words.  I couldn’t even breathe for a second.  I regained my composure as the show went on, but then they played So Far Away and I cried the entire time.  Not like a blubbering 16-year-old girl, but still, I couldn’t stop the tears from streaming down my cheeks.  Didn’t help that they had a huge photo of the guys hugging, with The Rev’s back facing the audience, hanging behind the stage for the song.  It kills me even now thinking about it.  Not just that we lost a great musician, but that Avenged Sevenfold, the guys, lost a best friend, a brother.  That shit is tough.  But they put on a helluva show, as always.  One of my favorite things about those guys is how much they appreciate and respect their fans.  It’s like one big fucking amazing family.  I hope they continue making music and touring, but if not, I am so glad I got to see them one more time.

Now, usually I don’t stick around after Avenged Sevenfold plays, because so far there hasn’t been a band that follows them that I care to see.  But, our friends wanted to see Disturbed (huge fans), so we stuck around.   They put on a damn good show too.  Wild light show and pyrotechnics, and fucking loud.  Actually, I thought David’s mic was a bit too loud compared to the music, especially for his singing style.  Those screeches and screams were ear-bleeding.  My only other criticism is on the outfit David was wearing.  Sleeveless jumpsuit…it was not attractive.  Not that that’s what he was going for, but the man is pudgy.  And that’s being nice.  The second song started and the guy was dripping with sweat already.  And he hardly moved around the stage.  Ok, that aside, they put on a great show, and I actually enjoyed it.  I enjoyed seeing our friends enjoy them more than that even.

The evening continued with drinking, a stop at Buffalo Wild Wings (until they called last call at 12:20am WTF?), back to the hotel bar til last call again, then passing out while watching Comedy Central in our shared room.  Good times.

So, it was a great weekend.  Worth the drive to Chicago for sure.  I hope every Avenged Sevenfold fan gets the chance to see them perform live.  SKULL!

Facebook, What Have You Done To Us?

I finally did it.  I “deactivated” my Facebook account.  Not because of the non-stop Farmville and Mafia Wars requests, or all the quizzes and ridiculous group pages people share, but because of my own friends and family.  Not all of them, but, well, enough is enough.

When did Facebook turn into a way for people to be freely nosey?  Yes, I know, don’t put stuff on the interwebs that you wouldn’t want your mother to see/read.  Well, I don’t know about you, but my mother, grandmother, and plethora of aunts, uncles, and cousins are all on Facebook.  But isn’t that the point?  To connect with these people and share photos of your latest vacation, send invitations to your Summer barbecue, and post “Hey, how’s it going?” messages to each others’ “Wall”?  Sadly though, something else has happened.  And I don’t know how or why, but Facebook has changed us.

Maybe we’re all just used to the days where MySpace ruled the social media realm.  Where almost anything seemed to go.  It wasn’t about sharing photos and staying connected, it was about slamming your friend’s page with comments and glittery, animated gif images.  It was about having the coolest page and showing yourself off, whoever you might be.  Which is exactly why I quit MySpace.  It just got old.  I decided I’d join Facebook and leave MySpace to the pre-teens, porn stars, and musicians.

For me, Facebook was a place to keep in touch with my family, especially as more and more of them joined.  When I got married last year, everyone was anxious to see photos.  When my husband and I went through the process of buying our first home, everyone kept in touch to see how things were going.  And when we sealed the deal, I was sure to post pictures of our beautiful new home.

But…when things were not so peaches and cream, I wasn’t always great about holding my tongue.  And that’s just the kind of person I am.  But hey, my gramma wasn’t always on Facebook.  So, my friends and family got to share in my colorful language and often random thoughts of the day.  And if they didn’t like it, they could always hide my posts.  Or even request that I hide my post from them.  But no, I found more often that I got scolded or even removed from “friends” lists.  It’s give and take though, and often times just plain amusing.

But that’s me.  That’s my life and my choices, and all that other garbage.  I decide which things to share, and what to keep private.  And by “private”, I don’t mean posting it and only letting certain people see.  I mean that I DO NOT POST IT.  Afterall, we know how awesome Facebook is with privacy.  What’s private today may not be tomorrow, or the next time they decide to revamp things.  Not only that, but it seems that a lot of people using Facebook can’t keep up with the changes, and therefore don’t even know how to control their privacy.

Now here is what really gets my britches in a bunch: People using Facebook to attack one another publicly and using Facebook to avoid taking private matters into private conversations, like talking in person or on the phone.

Your wife just left you for her personal trainer?  Fantastic!  You don’t need to share that on Facebook.  Oops, you did already?  And your mother saw it and scolded you in front of everyone for QQing about it on Facebook?  Great!  Now both of you GTF off of Facebook and have a phone conversation!! PLEASE.

You hate your life?  Yippie!  Oh, you told everyone on Facebook to fuck off and leave you alone?  Awesome!  Now your Grandma is upset that you could say such hurtful things.  I guess you forgot she was your Facebook friend.  Block your Grandma from seeing your status updates if you’re going to attack everyone you know, especially those who take things personally and don’t understand what you’re actually going through.  Oh, you want people to understand what you’re going through? Write an email or pick up the phone!

You have a piece of advice you’d like your sister to know?  Nice!  You posted it as a status update, making it obvious that you want someone to know something but you don’t really want to say it to their face so you’ll let everyone try to guess who your piece of advice is for, even though it’s pretty clear because people are nosey and will figure it out?  Well isn’t that special!  If you have something to say, talk to the person directly. No one cares for your condescending advice.  They only care to try to figure out what issues you and your sister are having…because they are nosey.

So, those are my leftover feelings and reasons for “deactivating” my Facebook account.  Aside from that, I feel a sense of relief that I no longer have to be a part of the nonsense.  As for my nonsense, oh it can still be found here, and on Twitter.  Mwahahaaa!

Member First?

MFM Logo

Yeah right...

Yes, Member First Mortgage.  Though, I have to argue the name because I have had the worst experience with this company.  And for all you “TLDR” people, skip to the end and read my warnings at least.

Let me start off by saying to anyone who is buying their first house (that is, those who aren’t sure what they’re doing exactly), SHOP AROUND FOR YOUR MORTGAGE COMPANY.  I don’t care who your bank or credit union usually works with.  They have a relationship for a reason, and that reason probably isn’t because they are the best our there.

Looking back, I would have done more research about the mortgage process, but I never really thought it was a big deal.  We have a credit union, so we figured we would work with them, or whoever they work with.  Definitely a big mistake.  Don’t get me wrong, I like my credit union, and in fact, I am leaving their name out of this rant.

I should have recognized what I now know to be warning signs and not just honest mistakes.  And with the way the house market is and the good ol’ economy, who you work with and what direction you take as a first-time homebuyer is so important.  Important to your sanity as much as your future.

When you talk to a mortgage rep, know what loan types are out there and learn anything you can about how they work, as well as what might be best for you.  Ask lots of questions about these loans.  If your mortgage rep can’t answer something, MOVE ON.  After all, it’s their JOB.  I will warn that loan types have changed a lot over just the past couple of years, as the market and needs of homebuyers (along with laws and all that other crap) has changed.

This might not sound too exciting, but taking a first-time homebuyers education course might save you all sorts of headaches.  For us, it was actually required for our loan type.  I only wish we would have taken it before we jumped in with both feet.  Search online for classes near you; they’re usually held at local community halls.

Now on to the actual story, or rather, adventure we’ve had with Member First…
I will mark warning signs by number, as so: (1.)

We received a business card for a mortgage rep who works for MFM, right out of our credit union, we’ll call him Frank.  My husband called Frank and gave him some information to get an over-the-phone estimate on how much we qualified for on a home loan.  With this information, we proceeded to meet with a Realtor.  After we got that ball rolling and began looking around for houses, we decided to set up an appointment with Frank to get started on paperwork and get an official quote. We also decided on a loan type, considering our finances and the houses we were interested in.  (Note: With my new found hindsight, I would recommend meeting with a Realtor first, THEN dealing with the mortgage stuff.)

My husband again called Frank to set the appointment and asked Frank what documents we would need to bring.  Frank told my husband that he did not need to bring anything and that he would tell him when he got there.  Confused, my husband asked why he couldn’t just tell him now so he could bring it and get things moving.  (1.)Frank told him that he was afraid he’d just lose the documents and that he would have to redo them after we found a house anyway.  Of course, we thought that was a bit ridiculous, not only that he was obviously being lazy, but that he also admitted that he is not very organized.

We continued our home search and, after a few weeks, we realized the houses we were most interested in would require a different loan type.  (2.)Let me note here that this was based on our own research and not anything our mortgage rep told us.  We put in our offer, and eventually settled after a couple of counters.  The next step was to finally meet with Frank and get the loan started.

We met with Frank, who apparently had started the paperwork for the wrong loan type.  (3.)We were informed that Frank could no longer handle our loan because of the new loan type and that it would be transferred to their main office, 70 miles away.  He told us that we could still sign some stuff and that it would be fine because everything could be transferred over, somehow.  I will cut to the chase right here and tell you that he was very wrong and that we had to re-sign everything.  Understandable, but still doesn’t explain why he didn’t know.  And by the way, after seeing his office, it’s no surprise why he told us earlier that he might lose stuff…

Even after the headaches, it came as a relief to find out that we would be dealing with someone new.  Oh and little did we know what was in store for us.

(4.)Weeks went by with us sending in documents, re-sending in misplaced documents, and sending in documents that they forgot we needed to send them.  (5.)Weeks went by with little more than a single email response after asking over and over what the status of the loan process was, and if we would close on time.  (6.)Weeks went by with even our Realtor becoming more and more outraged at the lack of professionalism and customer service that Member First was showing.

At this point, we were dealing with 3 different individuals at MFM, who apparently are even poor at communicating with each other.  Today my husband received a phone-call from individual #2, stating that they didn’t have a certain document.  My husband explained that we sent it right after they requested it.  She asked who we sent it to, to which he replied “I don’t know, but you guys have it and must have lost it, you need to figure it out”.  After many additional, flavorful words my husband spoke to her, I don’t think she will be calling him anymore.  I spoke to our Realtor shortly after, who said she would be using some flavorful words as well the next time she speaks to someone at MFM…if she ever gets s hold of someone, that is.

The folks as MFM claim that we are still probably on track to close in ONE WEEK, but I can’t really take them seriously.  Not unless they decide to get their shit together and work their asses off next week.

So, to summarize the warning signs of a bad mortgage company:

  1. If your mortgage rep tells you he has a tendency to lose stuff, run.
  2. If your mortgage rep does not attempt to guide you in your loan type decision, or offer additional information, run.
  3. If your mortgage rep doesn’t even know what types of loans he can do or how to do them, RUN.
  4. If your mortgage company loses your shit and doesn’t even know what shit you’re supposed to have, RUN FAST.
  5. If your mortgage rep does not answer his phone, call back, respond to emails within a normal amount of time, RUUUUN!
  6. And lastly, if your mortgage rep manages to piss off even your Realtor, GETTHEFUCKOUTOFTHERENOW!

So, as you can see, you should probably run at the first sign of something fishy smelling, because it only gets worse.  Also, stay far away from Member First Mortgage.  Ask your friends/family/coworkers who they use, or just ask your Realtor.  And even after you get suggestions, SHOP AROUND.  Thankfully, we lucked out with an awesome Realtor who I would recommend to anyone in a heartbeat.  She’s one of the reasons I have any sanity left at all in this process mess.

To everyone out there looking for their first home, do your homework, and good luck!

Game Over?

Isn’t it time to put down those games?
Time to stop wandering, put wondering into action.

Sometimes I wish I were more like you, or him, or her.
To see what you see when you look at the world, when you look at me.

Does a light shine on you, or are you just as much in the dark?
Scraping up every scrap of this and that, looking for answers.

Does truth come from endless pages of endless books?
Words written by those who think they’ve found something.

Perhaps it’s all a simple misunderstanding.
Perhaps there’s nothing to understand at all.

Wondering, wandering, wishing, searching, retching.
Buried under questions with no one to answer.

Will death bring satisfaction?
Or will you put in fifty cents to continue your game?

Death to Rotface!

We did it!  We finally downed Rotface in 25-man ICC!  After soooo many attempts for the last several weeks, we decided to make some last minute adjustments for our final attempt of the night.  We were close to our raid cutoff time and out to give it one last shot, all or nuthin’. With our first attempt at 10%, and getting worse from there as the night went on, it seemed anything could happen.

So, after arguing whether it was the heals or the dps that needed to be better, the raid leaders made the decision to throw in 2 more healers. Yes, we had 8 healers during out last fight.  I let out a sigh to my fellow tree, thinking that this would only prolong the fight and result in an overwhelming amount of oozes with not enough of the boss’ health cut down. We had tried this method a while back with no luck, so it just seemed ridiculous to try again.

The issues was that people were being hit by oozes, slimespray, and ooze puddles too much with no chance of a heal.  So, to fix the coordination problem, we upped the heals.  It was quickly obvious the difference this made.  Everyone remained pretty well topped off in health, which made focusing on the tank a lot less stressful.  Near the end, oozes were everywhere and explosions were happening on top of each other.  With about half the raid left standing, including our 2 tanks (and myself, of course), we pushed as hard as we could until we saw the monster come crashing down in a gloriously disgusting array.

The cheers were halfhearted as we realized it was mostly luck combined with overpowered heals that got us through.  Changes will have to be made in order to do it again, but the changes are at least a bit more visible now.  And, we even got a video of the fight, so not only proof, but a learning tool.

As for me, I was excited to see a Resto Druid helm drop, though I knew I was low on the EPGP priority from winning 2 pieces of gear during the last raid.  I still have no idea how I won it.  And being that I had just purchased my tier10 helm only days earlier, this replacement was only a good, minor upgrade.  So, I asked my fellow tree, who missed last raid due to illness, if he would like the helm.  It was a much better, and much needed upgrade for him.  And besides that, I would have dropped so far below everyone in PR that I probably wouldn’t have recovered for weeks!  But seriously, I was happy to offer it to him 🙂

As for you, Festergut, you’re next.