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Friends don’t let friends IM after midnight. Or do Wii?

Friends don’t let friends IM after midnight. Or do Wii?

I don’t sleep well at night. So sometimes I get online and find people to talk to. Some are okay with it. Some play “IM dead” and pretend they are not there rolling their eyes.

One of my favorite late night chatters is my totally awesome and completely cool roomie for BlogHer ’07 and yes again this year for BlogHer ’08 (cause I didn’t scare her off!) is Busy Mom. Yes, she does have a real name. She can tell you herself. The sad thing is? She has WiiNis envy. (rhymes with another phrase and is pronounced wee-nus envy.) It is happening all over the country from people who are without a Wii.

This woman is living totally old school. Like make you want to weep and donate to the cause old school. Check out how pathetically old school Busy Mom is and how she needs to step at least into the 21st century but definitely into this decade. See? Total WiiNis envy. (Or is it WiiNis Envii?)

This is one of our late night conversations. And, yes, the silly had hit but the fun stuck around.

: I wrote a post: “I Wii Pii’ed myself when – got my Wii Fit”

Busy Mom: Hahahaha!

Busy Mom: Charge the family a Fii to use it, money problem solved

12:03 AM me: Good idea for Mii
Busy Mom: Or, you could just let it Bii
me: Drop PiiTiiA and Bii Frii
I Sii
12:04 AM Busy Mom: Hii Hii Hii
me: Gii you are funnii
Busy Mom: Tii Hii, humor is Kii
12:05 AM me: We will get you a Wii this summer. I will buy thii a Wii to play. I can Sii you are Kii to the lovah of thii Wii and will Bii Frii to send Thii a Wii
12:06 AM Busy Mom: Whoopii!!
me: Yeah I am done. Out. Finii
Busy Mom: LOL
12:07 AM me: Have wii crossed the line into crazii? Because if wii shared this, they would sii that wii are wacked crazii
Busy Mom: Li’lol Mii?
me: My brain doth exploded
12:08 AM Busy Mom: My screen is all gooii, thanks

me: Now go! Work. I need to sii about deadlines for mii also.

Busy Mom: If it were graded, I’d get a Dii

me:Bii Good!12:13 AM Busy Mom: Okii Dokii! me: Nite sweetie Sweetii Swiitii Busy Mom: Hii, Hii, Mwah!12:14 AM Busii Mom, over and out me: Mommii needs coffii out

I do not know why some of you ignore me when I IM you late at night. That is kind of rude. Look at the fun you would have chatting.

Shall Wii chat soon?

I Wii Pii’ed myself when my Wii Fit arrived!

I Wii Pii’ed myself when my Wii Fit arrived!

I cannot express the sheer excitement I had when I got my WiiFit. I WiiPii’ed myself a bit. I mean, I have coveted this baby since I first saw them demo it way back in … Well, I don’t remember when but it was a long time ago. And now? Wii have one. (Wait…I looked it up. It was almost a YEAR AGO I first talked about Wii Fit. That is a long time to keep me waiting. Let me just put that out there.)

Okay, so anyway *waving my hands around like an over eager 4 year old* My baby. My precious. My Wii Fit is home safe. Even though Clint says I can’t sleep with it…anymore.

I will admit it scared me at first. I mean it would know my darkest secrets. My BMI and weight? Uh, no. My OB/GYN is not even allowed to know that and he knows me pretty intimately, so to speak.

Thankfully, my good friend Donna showed me that I can password protect my information. I mean, really, my kids don’t need to know that “mama has a big ol’ butt (say whaaaaat?)” (Bonus to whomever got that reference.)

So there I go with my bad self all hula-hoopin and jogging and balancing etc. ONLY to find that my kids were watching and laughing and videotaping me with my Flip camera. Under penalty of boarding school, they deleted it. I swear if you find it on YouTube, the kids are shipped off tomorrow. Unless I can become more famous than the Star War’s kid and Momsense all in one. Or not. Because really? It would totally be laugh at me and not with me.

BUT I have lost 6 pounds. SIX. 1…2…3…4…5…SIX.

So worth the wait for Nintendo to actually release this bad boy. (Though some of the weight loss might be attributed to me standing in the Texas heat chasing down the mailman every time I saw him. But most likely not.)

And fun? We are talking literally fun for the whole family. No. Really! Stepford Scouts honor!

My only rule is the video camera? It has to stay put away. Until I have the body of Demi Moore and the dance moves of ….okay the only name I can think of is Carmen Electra’s Strip Exercise video. But the point is the same.

It works.

It is fun.

Wii love it!

(TOTALLY WORTH the WiiPii in my pants over its arrival. Totally.)

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ESRB- What every parent needs to know

ESRB- What every parent needs to know

ESRB Being a gamer mom, I have to stay on top of not only the current games, but what type of content they contain. With everything from a Wii to a DS (Blessings to Nintendo) to a PlayStation and X-Box 360 as well as computer games, I see just about every new game that rolls out. Being a mom of kids ranging in ages from 6-14 not to mention the fact that I enjoy playing these games as well, I have to stay up on the ratings of each new game. That is where the ESRB ratings come into play. Do you have any idea what I am talking about when I say ESRB ratings? If you plan on buying any video games for your family– especially your children– you need to know what this means. In short, ESRB stands for: Entertainment Software Rating Board. ESRB is a non-profit, self-regulatory body established in 1994 by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA). They are the ones who assign video games and computer games their ratings based on their content.

What does that mean to you?

In short, “know before you go” exactly what the industry has to say about the game you or your children want to buy. Meaning… is this age appropriate? It may seem innocent, but without knowing the rating you can unknowingly set yourself up for a shock.

How does it work? Here is how ESRB explains the process. (There is more to it. Go check it out.)

Prior to a game being released to the public, game publishers submit responses to a detailed written ESRB questionnaire… specifying exactly what pertinent content (as defined by ESRB) will be in the game. Along with the written submission materials, publishers must provide a videotape or DVD which captures all pertinent content, including the most extreme instances, across all relevant categories including but not limited to violence, language, sex, controlled substances and gambling. Pertinent content that is not playable (i.e., “locked out”), but will exist in the game code on the final game disc, must also be disclosed.

Once the submission is checked by ESRB for completeness, which may also involve ESRB staff members playing a beta or alpha version of the game, the video footage is reviewed by at least three specially trained game raters. ESRB raters must be adults and typically have experience with children, whether through prior work experience, education or by being parents or caregivers themselves.

I will break it down for you.

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Paging Dr. O’Skill. Dr. Lack O’Skill.

Paging Dr. O’Skill. Dr. Lack O’Skill.

trauma-center-ds.jpgWhen you are dealing with doctors and you are not feeling well at all, what is the best way to get your mind off of it? Why to perform surgery of course! Enter Trauma Center: Under the Knife. I mean, I might as well be the surgeon and get to do the dramatic cutting. (Have I mentioned how much I love my DS? I do so love my beautiful DS. She is all crimson and black and has own case. Sometimes, I sleep with her. It’s okay. I let the Wii have its own bed.)

So I thought it would be fun to unwind with this game. I wanted a challenge, but something fun. This is what I chose.

And now my head will proceed to explode with frustration and irritation. I thought I was just all that. Bring it! I watch ER. I watch Grey’s Anatomy. I can SO perform these “tough” surgeries.

HA! If I want these people to die, I can.

ds-lite.jpgSomeone is going to need surgery if I cannot figure out how to get past Chapter 2: Awakening. I mean, this dude is all exploding aneurysms all the time. Get one fixed and two more show up and then five and then DEAD. I have killed this poor man about eleventy hundred times so far. I mean, you would think my beautiful DS that I love so much would just heal the dude so I can move on. But NO. It mocks me.

I am considering going back to the place I got the game, handing it over to the guy who convinced me I would enjoy it and make HIM get me through the level because try as I might, all I am doing is killing poor old Mario Kovac and his ginormous amounts of aneurysms. And really? That is just wrong.

Oh, and for the record, totally does get my mind of medical issues but totally does NOT relax me. Though, I have to admit, I am absolutely going to get this for the Wii. Maybe I can have better luck not killing him there. Or, if I do kill him, the blood will be way cooler on a bigger screen. (What? I am sick. And sick. So sue me.)

Maybe I should go get a soothing game like… Brain Age 2. (I am so dumb, it asked if I am too tired to play tonight.) Or Flash Focus. (“No, you idiot! That is NOT where the hidden ball is!“) I think I might be too slow for any of those tonight. (But I will tell you tomorrow how these games are making me dumber and slower. I am pretty sure that is not the point of them, but my brain? It is not normal.)

For now, I have to get to surgery. I am going to go try once again to not kill poor Mr. Kovac and his eleventy hundred aneurysms. (But I probably will. However, I have the perfect headstone for him!)

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Moms (even “alpha-moms”) can be “real” gamers. Get over it!

Moms (even “alpha-moms”) can be “real” gamers. Get over it!

There seems to be a recent outcry about the fact that gaming companies (such as Nintendo) have been reaching out to the so-called “Alpha Mom” when it comes to gaming. Especially with the Wii. Oh? And your point would be what?

I have to be honest when I say I am so over the “we are hard core gamers and they should focus on making games for us” attitude. Over. It. I have heard and read accounts of gamers who get seriously pissed off about the fact there are games created that are not “hardcore” but are being marketed to the maternal set. Cry me a river, boys. Your whining pisses me off!

Do I have a Wii? Yes. Do I have a DS? Yes. Do I have every game console (except PS3)? Yes. More importantly, do I play them? YES. Do I play MMORPGs? Yes. And I am *gasp* a Mom. Can you handle that truth?

But let’s get back to the real reason I am fired up. If I hear one more complaint or whine about companies that are looking to lure in/market to/reach out to the “alpha moms”, I just may have to open up a huge can of whoop ass on someone.

It is a simple concept. They show us the fun games. The games that will appeal to an entire family. They know (because they are smart and not caught up in whining about “hardcore” vs “casual” gaming) that if they can get Mom in on the gaming, they have won a huge battle. So what if you, Mr. Hardcore Serious Gamer Dude, is not a fan of games such as Wii Boogie. Easy solution. Don’t play it. I happen to have it, love it and play it with my entire family.

So why should game developers and companies look to demographics such as the alpha-mom set? (Besides the fact that we are the ones who make the majority of the household purchases?) Well, since I enjoy it, I share that fun with friends. They in turn buy the console and the game and the cycle continues.

Honey, that’s not ignoring the gamers that came before us. That is creating an entire new generation of gamers. Plus, if they sell these games to us “casual gamers” don’t you think that will equal profit, which leads to the ability to create more games which will get you, Mr. Hardcore Serious Gamer Dude, more of the types of games you want. And yes, I know that the first person shooter games are popular. You think I can’t whip someone on those, too? I may be able to kick up my heals with games like Wii Sports and Wii Boogie, but I can kick ass with the best of them on Halo.

What so many pissed off “gamers” seem to forget is that when they sell games to get the “Alpha Mom” and she gets her family involved (even if these are the “more casual” games), they are selling them to the generation that is probably going to kick your ass in your “hardcore game” within a few years. You have to learn to walk before you run. Soon, there will be an entire set of gamers that will be running…right over you in your game.

So let’s talk MMORPGs.

A while back on my gaming blog I had someone link to me and say that “I was ruining the integrity of true gaming by calling myself a gamer and playing World of Warcraft.

(Yes, I laughed, too.)

I am very thankful to Blizzard for taking a chance on me and hooking me up with WoW. I was at a point that not only did I not get the appeal, but I was ready to get it out of the house. They got it. They realized that if you get the mom, you get the family. I really do enjoy WoW. I have fun playing. And, yes, I can probably whip the crap out of a lot of the whiners on the game because I don’t worry about whether or not I am a “real” gamer or not. I just play.

Guess what, Mr. Serious Gamer Dude? Remember when you were crying a river over the delayed release of Blizzard’s Burning Crusade? Remember that? I was alpha testing it. Then beta testing it. Now, I am raiding with the best of them on it. Why? Because gaming is not limited to a certain minuscule demographic. Women play games. Including the “hardcore” games that you seem to feel you have cornered the market on. Even Moms play them. Yes, really!

The Newsweek blog Level Up wrote a re-cap of E3 and mentioned this very issue of not meeting the needs of the core gamer.

Elephant in the room:

The unfulfilled needs of the core Nintendo gamer, who’s becoming as invisible as Snuffleupagus while the company pursues Alpha Moms and active seniors.

The “needs of the core Nintendo gamer”? Like to have your every gaming need met? To have them ensure your gaming whims are taken care of with every release? To have your hand held? To ensure that a huge company like Nintendo meets only your needs and not those of a huge audience? To that I say, put your big girl panties on and get over it. Casual gamers are here. To stay. And we are making the company that you are whining about a huge profit.

Just as every book is not a thriller and every movie is not and action/adventure movie, not every game is going to fall into the “hardcore” gaming category. That is just common sense and good business.

Feeling neglected? Feeling like game developers need to listen to what you want and what you need?

Go cry to your guild and move over. We want to play.

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Wii like to travel and more

Wii like to travel and more

Wii play in the car! I have heard that there are a lot of fans of the Wii. (Can you believe I said that with a straight face? I don’t know anyone who has played Wii without loving it. In fact, I have a whole set of pictures of a family party at the beach playing the Wii. Stay tuned for links.) I have also read the documents on how to set it up. I was shocked that there was no mention as to how to play this modern miracle of technology in the car.

Now, I know that there is a huge segment of parents who believe that the car is the best place to “communicate” with their children. Ha! When driving from Texas to Florida, I am all about the beauty of technology. And am willing to try anything. Apparently so are my children.

You see a prime example of how my children love technology enough to not care how uncomfortable it is. Now, one of the things I love about the Wii is that it gets you off of you butt and onto your feet to play. However, I also love that the game is so much fun to play that the kids insisted that we unpack it to try to play it in the car. (We took it to Florida for days like these.) So, being the “Please let me listen to my tunes and zone out while I drive this motley crue across county” type of Mom, I agreed.

Let me just share with you the love of my Wii. I heart it. I slept with it one night but Clint said no more of that. He said it was crowded sleeping with my Senseo, my laptop and my Wii. (Can you blame a girl? I love my toys!)

So for anyone who may be wondering, “Is a Wii for me?” Hell yeah, baby! I mean… certainly it should be a considered product to purchase.


Now on to topics beyond technologicalizing my children. (Yes, I do love making up words. Why do you ask?) I have seen a lot of fun entries around the net. Guessing the truth or the lie. Asking me anything and I have to answer it honestly. Paying for you to comment. (Not really on that last one. You have been great! I have heard from my niece AND my coffee neighbor. Tickles me all pink and purple and a little bit of cyan.) What do you want? I mean, I will still write the babble-assing posts, but I want to know if you want to know anything. Do you?

Okay, so it looks like BlogHer might not happen for me. It is at least on hold for a while. After getting a severe punch to the gut financially, I am not going to buy a plane ticket until a week before BlogHer at the soonest. Anyone in DFW want to go to BlogHer and make it a road trip? Anyone between here and Chicago want to get picked up and finish the road trip? Honestly, I had questions about going, but now that I am set on it and am over the moon about friends I know that are going, I want to be there. So, honestly, if you want to road trip it, let me know. I am up for it. (At least I keep trying to tell myself that I am.) Are you?

And here, my friends is yet another pretty picture to keep you loving me and being patient while I play around with my blog.

Me and my amazing husband of 17 years