In fact, ghoti introduced herself on the coming out thread and offers:
But friends-of-Liv who'd like to get to know me better perhaps may wish to know that I will be doing December Days and that might be a good place to ask questions?ghoti is very much an LJ person and doesn't really do DW (indeed, DW-ghoti who is in my DW circles is an entirely different person whom I'm not dating, so I hope this does not result in any confusion.)
We had a very successful Halloween party this year, partly spearheaded by our OSOs' youngest who was very very excited about celebrating it. He got involved from the beginning, from encouraging jack to organize the party and invite people, to making lots of excellent skull and pumpkin decorations. I think he was a bit disappointed in the end, because American TV had led him to expect a big party with lots of games and full-on spookiness, but mostly it ended up being boring grown-ups sitting around drinking and talking. And eating pie, lots of people brought pie, including fivemack who made a thematic bright green toad pie.
The quad borrowed a custom from Purim and dressed up as eachother, which was a great deal of fun. And the kids dressed up as superheroes with the Halloween enthusiast as a bat. A few guests dressed up too, pseudomonas made a very effective troll and atreic was a traditional and very lovely cat. And some new people showed up I hadn't met before, including a biologist, which meant I finally got my chance to talk shop at a party; I'm normally quite content with the way that half the conversation at most of our parties is about computery things that are a bit over my head, because I listen and learn, but a biology conversation was very cheering.
I played a bit of Haunt the house: Terrortown on my phone with the younger children. I got the Android version from the "eye candy" Humble Bundle, and it is indeed very pretty. It's a fairly basic point and click game, where you're a ghost and you have to scare all the NPCs by possessing objects and making them do spooky actions. As an adult I found it endearing and well-made, but not that engaging, but it's proved really successful for when the children want to play on my phone. I mean, it's a bit fiddly for tinies who are still working on hand-eye coordination (we wondered if it might be better on a tablet), but 3yo Andreas had lots of fun making all the objects do silly things and Judith at 6 played through the game logically and systematically and tried to get all the achievements, which I didn't have the patience to do but then I've had a lot more experience of playing games. I can't figure out a way to get the new level being advertised though, possibly cos I got the game through the Humble Bundle rather than directly from the Google app store, which I'm disappointed by as I'm sure the children would love it.
One of the objects can be made to play Breakout, so after the party we ended up with a diversion into showing Judith Breakout and talking about old computer games. And, um, I may have dug out my old copy of Jardinains which is the best modern Breakout game ever, pretty true to the original except a hundred times more silly due to the addition of evil gnomes who throw flowerpots at you and cackle when you drop the ball.
Ahem. The weekend after that jack and I took the OSOs' children to alextfish's launch party for his exciting new game, while their parents attended a not terribly child-friendly event. It was really the best kind of party, alextfish and woodpijn had hired a local community centre, where the children played with toys and other kids, and the adults (and some of the older and more gaming-oriented kids) played SteamWorks and other board games.
SteamWorks is, as the name might suggest, steampunk themed, so the dress code was optionally steampunk. I didn't get organized to take advantage of the opportunity to wear a corset, but I did improvise something involving a stripy shirt of jack's, and an ankle-length dark green skirt I wear anyway, and put my hair up and wore a hat, and with my awesome gothy tailcoat over that it was clearly a costume in context. woodpijn said she knew I'd make the effort to dress up, which I was flattered by. I think of myself as someone who's quite bad at costumes, but the truth is I enjoy improvising outfits out of some of the clothes I happen to have and a couple of cheap charity shop props at most (it helps that I'm somewhat of a goth anyway, so I have a few non-standard accessories available). I'm not into serious cosplay though, I don't want to spend many hours or lots of money making a beautiful authentic costume, and I'm always a bit intimidated at events where there's a lot of that level of it.
If you like Eurogames at all, I highly recommend SteamWorks, and not only because my friend designed it. It has a lovely mechanic, where you use your worker actions to construct machines, which themselves generate new action spaces for the workers. And there's very nice player interaction as you try to persuade other players to make use of your machines. Flavour-wise, it's the good sort of steampunk, in the sense that it's all about making cool inventions, and not the bad sort which romanticizes colonialism and class inequality. It's a little thing but I like the way the art includes women and characters of various apparent ethnic backgrounds, rather than just assuming that cogs and top hats means white men.
This weekend just past I did not dress up at all, I was exactly and comfortably my own self. jack's mother came to visit, which is always lovely, and ghoti organized a Liberian Thanksgiving dinner. Which meant eating lots of tasty African themed food, and feeling generally thankful. Unlike US Thanksgiving which is a bit Problematic™, Liberian TG is about being thankful for not being slaves, which, well, reminds me of something. And it was a chance for jack's Mum to get to know the OSOs a bit more and to spend an evening with friends in a gathering that was (just, with ten people at the table) small enough for a single conversation rather than a party.
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