. . . in which house additions are made, Sonia is called to France, Tate shows his true colours, and Death visits - briefly.
This is where I left the Knowles boys since way before World Adventures came out - two brothers, Generation 3, watching TV. Geoff Knowles, founder of this legacy, now sits on the coffee table in an urn. Ayesha, his widow, is still alive, and 96 days old at this point. Kimball is the current active heir and head of the family, married to Sonia, who used to be an Ursine, so she has flaming red hair and a struggle with weight.
Back to the boys:
Tate, the one in the blue PJ's, is the heir. He's good, excitable, and a coward. May not fair well in those tombs I'll be sending him to when he grows up.
Liam, his younger brother, is artistic, but he's also a heavy sleeper and neurotic. He walks around sobbing about faucets that haven't been checked or other un-named fears.
Good grief. What a pair.
And added a lovely tree and some more flowers for a more settled look in the front yard.
Brilliant. I know. I'm so creative.
Yes, this family still had too much money. I mean, the goal is to keep building and spending as much as you can. But once you really start raking it in in this challenge, it gets harder and harder to keep spending!
But World Adventures has come to the rescue. Number One, they can travel and spend money. ;) Number Two, I could add onto this relatively small lot with a basement! Yeah, that's what I'm talkin' 'bout!
I found a great tutorial which said it was harder to add a basement to an already-built house, but actually, with just a bit of thought (which was all I had that day, anyway), I managed just fine. I have created a room to display all the jewels and such. And the display cases that come with WA are also very handy! They have all the Sunset Valley jewels on one display, and I now have a second one to collect jewels from travels.
There are also three other "future expansion" rooms down here and a full, four-piece bathroom.
Here's how I did the stairs. I read that you could just join the first stair from the foundation to the ground right up with the second stair that leads right to the basement, but mine didn't work like that. No bother, I just put a wee landing in for the first stairs, and they work beautifully!
Sonia soon got directions to Gustav's house, the man she was to meet about the puzzle. She rented a scooter and zipped off down the road.
"Wow! This is great! I could get used to this! Fun, sun, no kids, no husband, no garden, no cares!"
She rang the bell at a nice looking French flat and a nice looking French man greeted her.
Warning bells were going off in her head. His eyes were really nice. His hand was really nice. He was really nice.
This was not really good. She'd heared about French men.
So as soon as he ushered her into the entryway, she got right down to business and tried to avoid the really nice way he kept looking at her directly in the eyes while she talked.
"Yes, well, ahem, it seems that a mutual acquaintence of ours needed this puzzle solved..." She pulled out a piece of paper to show him. "And I was sent to talk to you..."
"Mm hm," he said, not even looking at the paper. "Zee answer is eight."
"But... but you didn't even look at the puzzle!"
"I don't have to. Zee answer is in your eyes. It's eight."
Sonia stuttered a "thank-you", shook his hand, and left. Quickly.
"Well. That was that, I guess," she muttered on the way back to the hotel.
But she'd just arrived! It couldn't be over so soon, could it? As luck would have it, it wasn't. She saw a notice posted on the bulletin board at the hotel that someone was missing something and was too scared to go back to where they'd lost it. They were willing to pay for help.
A phone call was all it took to have Sonia whizzing down the road on her scooter again toward some kind of French tomb thing.
Then she spied an ingot of silver!
"Wooooo! Kimball will be so proud of me for collecting stuff in France!" she exclaimed.
"This room has to go somewhere other than here," she muttered after gathering up the silver and examining her surroundings more closely. There didn't seem to be a way out - except there was something behind that pile of rubbish...
She cleared the debris and found a hidden latch on the wall that opened a secret door!
"Yay! More stuff to collect!" she laughed as she cleared away more piles of rocks in the next room.
"Ugh, more rock piles," she groaned. Her fingers weren't really used to all this pick-axe work.
Heh, heh, heh. Good thing no one was down her looking at her scratch her backside, huh?
Clearing away those three rock piles had winded Sonia. She dug out a now-dirty piece of paper from her pocket and made some notes while she caught her breath.
Then she threw a switch and entered something that was starting to look more tomb-like.
Seeing a hole in the wall in the next room, Sonia sucked in her breath and stuck her hand into it.
"Yiiiieeee, I hope there's nothing in here! Oooooh, it's cold in there! Eeek!"
She shrieked as her hand hit something, but then she realized it wasn't a bug. It was another switch.
The switch opened a door which lead her into a room with a garden maze! Would this ever end?
However, she made her way through the garden maze, solved a puzzle or two, and managed to collect some more stuff for Kimball!
Finally, she entered the last room and found the item that had gone missing! As well as some more collectible things. She would be taking a heavy suitcase home from France!
She decided not to go back to the hotel that night and pitched her tent at a local campground. Roasting food around the fire, she ran back over her day in her head. It was good. Very good. But she missed the kids after all. And Kimball. She was so excited to share her discoveries with him!
It was time to go home.
And go home she did. Kimball was thrilled to see her again!
Gramma Ayesha was, too. She loved her grandkids, but sitting on the floor tutoring Liam was getting a little harder these days!
Sonia and Tate had a good visit that evening. She told him of the food she tasted in France. Tate, as you can now see, is a nerd. Corduroy pants, dress shirt, glasses, hair. The whole bit. As a teen, he rolled the "flirty" trait on top of his goodness, excitability, and cowardice. Not sure how he'll get the guts up to flirt, but hey. Whatever.
Not the sparkles! But she was making dinner for everyone!
Oh well. I supposed someone else could make dinner. I figured it was her time to go. She'd lived a good life, missed her Geoff, and wasn't out collecting anymore.
And then THIS!
Where the framming heck did she get a death flower, huh? Who was the idiot who gave that to her, eh?
What? Oh. Me? Oh. *ahem* Well. *blush* I did? Really? I see. *cough cough* So much for losing Generation 1.
"Mom, where the hell did you get that flower! I thought that was safely in my backpack! Have you been rummaging through my stuff again!?!?"
Oh, suck it up, buttercup. Sheesh, you'd think Kimball was a whining teenager again.
*gasp* "Ooooooo. Pwetty fwower!"
Honestly, you should see how Grim goes ga-ga over these things. It's shameful, it really is. He comes on all tough and gruff and stuff like that, but he's just a pussy-cat on the inside.
"Holey Cow, you can go through counters now! OHMYGOSH!!!"
Yup. Kimball again. If Grim could roll his eyes, he would have.
However, Ayesha was back, and pretty much in one piece, except for the bit that was in the counter. And here's the crazy thing.
She was now only 74 days old! *faints* Well, that was a little longer than I'd been counting on having her around!
Death trucked off with his "pwetty fwower", but the fear factor took hold of Tate and wouldn't let go.
*cue shudders, gasps, fearful squeaks, and groaning*
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand he's out.
What in the world would he do if he knew Grampa Geoff haunted his room every night, I wonder??? *giggle*
Monday, August 2, 2010
Sonia's tummy grew and grew. She waddled around like a duck. A happy duck, but a duck nonetheless.
The pregnancy really didn't seem to last a long time after all was said and done, however. Before she knew it, she was huffing and puffing and feeling quite strongly about getting this baby out.
Dang. No one told her those babies were so insistent!!!!
"Oh goodness, I have an idea! Why don't I call Kimball and he can take you to the hospital?" Ayesha squeeled.
Sonia gritted her teeth and tried to breathe. "That would be great, Mom," she said through her clenched jaw. Sheesh, you'd think it had been a literal eon since Ayesha had experienced this! What did she do, forget all about it?
Kimball rushed in and looked extremely panicked while Sonia had a meltdown and wished her mom was there to help her through this.
Why? Why, why, why did she have to go already??
However - a taxi ride and few hours later, Sonia gaily sauntered out of the hospital with a bouncing baby boy!
Tate Knowles, "the cheerful". He was good and excitable at birth. And Kimball could hardly keep up with Sonia, she was so excited to get home with her new son!
But as Tate fussed a bit when they walked in the door, panic set back in for poor Sonia. How could she mother without her own mother???
Ayesha saw her distraught look and took the new babe while Kimball took his wife into his arms and held her for a long time while she sobbed quietly into his shoulders. She clung to him as if she were a drowning woman clinging to a drifting log.
Having the gift of "good", however, Kimball was able to cheer his wife up while Ayesha got to know her first grandbaby. Sonia was so thankful for this wonderful family she'd married into!
After Sonia fed Tate, Ayesha offered to tuck him into bed while Sonia got some much needed rest.
And so the daily grind began. Feedings, changings, cuddlings - and exercisings!
Sonia found that post-partum weight-gain was catching up to her! She was grateful for Ayesha's help with Tate so that she could work out on the treadmill or in front of the TV.
Kimball was a great help, too, of course. He loved his new son - loved it all, changing diapers, feeding bottles, late night snuggles, everything. He was a great daddy.
No matter how carefully Sonia watched what she ate, that weight problem kept up with her. She tried to be consistent with her exercise, but that wasn't always possible with the family out and about Corrigan Bay working on collecting or Lifetime Wishes.
It seems Sonia wasn't the only one battling a weight problem. Remember the beautiful and slim Bella Bachelor??? Well - she'd obviously discovered Key Lime Pie. *sigh*
Ayesha and Sonia managed to squeeze out some time each evening before retiring to play some chess. Ayesha was now a master at the game, but she'd let Sonia win.
Geoff, meanwhile, finally got to visit that house across the street that he'd wanted waaaaay back when he'd first moved into town. He found out that the outside was deceiving. The inside was darker and dingier than the shell suggested. He was rather glad that he'd built his own home and that he and Ayesha had had the chance to decorate it as they went instead of renovating an entire house.
Before they knew it, Tate matured into a toddler! He looked a lot like his daddy and granddaddy, that's for sure.
But - - cuter. ;)
And - he liked to play in his toybox! Ayesha had been scared more than once when Tate pulled this on her while she was babysitting. He'd play Pirates, and Bathtub, and Caveman, and anything else he could come up with in there.
Sometimes, he'd play Peek-a-Boo, but he always closed the lid when Ayesha came into the room, the scoundrel.
Awwww. But he was so framming cute in there, Ayesha could never get mad at him.
He was a pretty sociable little kid - which was good, as Sonia was expecting a second child!
She was secretly hoping for a girl this time, although she knew Kimball wished for another boy.
Ayesha garnered so many Lifetime Happiness Reward points that they were able to install a Food Replicator!
Now, this thing did not come with instructions, so it sat there unused for quite awhile as they all tapped buttons and opened openings and tried to figure the darn thing out.
Right after a swim and her usual game of chess with Ayesha one night, Sonia went into labour for the second time. Kimball panicked - as if that's what fathers should just do, you know - and Sonia worked at the breathing thing.
This time, however, she refused to go to the hospital.
"I want a home birth, frammit!" she screamed.
Kimball couldn't refuse that, could he? *snork*
And so, with hardly more than a puff and a pant and some crazy sparkles not unlike the birthday effects, little Liam Knowles was born into the household.
Liam means "a binding" or "an alliance" - which seemed suitable, as he was the spare-heir to the Knowles/Ursine legacy. :D
Liam got a crib in his own room, which was Kimball's old room downstairs. "The last thing I need," declared Sonia, "is one baby waking another!"
Well, Kimball had to agree, didn't he?
Once again, the post-pregnancy weight battle was on for Sonia, poor dear.
Ayesha had taken up painting. Her style was --- interesting.
Liam was yet another apple in his Daddy's eyes, that's for sure. Kimball spent as much time with his sons as he could, considering he was putting in so much time collecting gems and fishing for great fish all around town.
Geoff had made his goal of 20 friends, so he was feeling just peachy-keen, to be sure. He loved working around the house, making things impervious to dirt or break-downs.
Sonia, still with a few extra baby pounds, had her birthday. She almost cried looking at her great in-laws and loving husband. Her grief over her mom's passing was lessening, but she still wished she could have seen her two grandsons and how Sonia had grown and matured as a mother and wife.
As she wished for a fat-free future, Geoff moved in around her to get a good shot for a photo.
Ayesha wished her daughter-in-law could get the hang of that fat-free life, as well, but it was still an exciting time as Sonia aged into adulthood.
Ayesha heard Tate crying upstairs, so she offered to go get him while everyone else dug into the cake.
Well - and isn't that a funny picture???
"Honey, do you think this dress makes me look fat?"
With Tate settled, the four adults enjoyed cake and talked about their future. The money was flowing in, they were learning the best ways to cut the gems to get the best value from them, and they were starting to gain profits from some business partnerships in town. Things were definitely looking good!
And you know what? Kimball didn't care if his wife carried some extra pounds or not. He always thought she was the sweetest, loveliest person he'd ever known.
Definitely a good catch, that boy. ;)
"I love you, sweetheart. Thank you so much for our wonderful sons. And thanks for putting up with Dad fixing stuff in his PJ's, and Mom painting in her PJ's, and that gawd-awful stuffed blowfish in the dining room, and my fishing passion, and..."
"Oh, shut up, Kimball. Just kiss me again."
Yes, things were going well for the Knowles Clan. Kimball was becoming pretty good at bringing in the cash with his findings.
He couldn't believe how many rubies and sapphires and diamonds popped up out of the ground every day!
He ran all over town while his wife and parents looked after the kids. He made it to the beach one day and found some gems and space rocks.
Then he unpacked his Simford 2000 Fishing Pole Extravaganza from his pocket and tried for some trophy fish. After all, his LTW was to present the perfect aquarium! He needed more perfect specimens!
An angelfish! Perfect!
No, really. Perfect.
And the Tragic Clownfish. Now, wasn't that a great addition to his collection? Tragic or not, at least he was colourful. And perfect.
Sharks were.... a little scary. OK, a lot scary. But hey, if they would fit into his fishbowls, he'd take them home.
Later that week, Liam grew up. Funny how those kids just sit up and twinkle, eh?
Wow. Looks like he got his mother's red hair, and his grampa's love of a lack of clothing.
Did I say that out loud???
Goodness, that poor Sonia was really having an up-and-down battle with her weight! Geoff had never seen anything like it! Although Ayesha had always been such a fitness freak that he hadn't had a reason to... Still, it worried him that Sonia struggled so. He knew she got depressed when she was overweight, and he wanted his grandsons to have a happy mommy.
Ayesha continued to paint. She seemed to be getting a bit of a "style". Maybe.
And Kimball continued to collect. Even in the scary graveyard. *shudder*
Good thing he had the "brave" trait like his father and mother!
Tate was toddling around one night when all of a sudden he looked around, hearing some kind of strange "twinkly" sound...
He stood up, sparks flew...
He giggled and turned 'round and 'round...
And suddenly, he was a real, live boy!
In his underpants. Gosh, was he embarrassed!
His grandma said a gay "Happy Birthday, Tate, dear!" as he desperately pulled open the top drawer of the hall dresser, hoping to find something suitable to cover his undies.
Meanwhile, upstairs in the nursery, someone was up to Tate's old tricks...