October is here! Let’s get cozy for fall!

Share your favorite autumn or Halloween posts in the comments

October is my absolute favorite month. The weather is manageable. Halloween is everywhere. And of course, there’s MY BIRTHDAY, WOOOOOOOOOOO! What a great month, right? Here’s a look at what I have planned for Wonderland Loft in October.

Happy birthday-month to me!

I’m a proud October Scorpio, born on the 29th. The same birthday as my childhood fave Setsuna Meioh aka Sailor Pluto. What a need, amirite? Whatever. I still love Sailor Moon; can’t stop won’t stop.

For my birthday this year, I’m hoping to acquire some photo studio equipment. I’ve been researching it for a while because of my twitch streaming. I want a chroma key setup. It just so happens that I could use the same equipment for blogging. Knock out two things at once! I’ll be posting about my process on choosing exactly what equipment I want for my set up.

Birthday fashion

I had a lot of fun styling an outfit specifically for my birthday dinner last year, so I’m going to do it again this year. I didn’t manage to actually purchase everything I wanted in time since it was a last minute project, but this year, I’M READY. I’ll be pushing for “hey I’m a Scorpio” paired with an ancient Egyptian style. Stay tuned for a complete outfit styling post.

It’s officially autumn

Okay, so it has been for over a week now, but whatever. I was busy?

I’m realizing that I’ve forgotten the real reason I created this blog: to share my favorite things. In fact, I totally forgot until after I had written the majority of this post. You’re experiencing self-rediscovery in real time, wow!

Anyway, in the spirit of fall, I’ll be compiling lists of fun crafts and DIY projects, delicious food, and beauty and fashion ideas. Colder weather means all things cozy. I hope everything I share this month will make your life feel cozy and snug in the chilly days ahead.

Show me your faves!

Feel free to share your favorite links in the comments below. I want to see your favorite fall or Halloween themed blog posts or websites! Maybe a good place for Halloween costumes.

If you run a blog, link a post or two. Since I haven’t actually compiled any of these lists yet, I may even feature your content. Perhaps it will inspire an entirely new post.

Pin this!

Share your favorite autumn or Halloween posts in the comments

Things I want to do next in my life

Things I want to do next in my life

This year marked my 10 year anniversary of being a designer in IMVU and SecondLife. It’s been a really great experience and I learned a lot about running a business, even if it is a virtual business. That alone made it a challenge, but I feel like it will help prepare me for “real life” situations.

After so much time, I’ve found myself wanting to do something else. I would love to be able to adopt another hobby that could become a business. Over the past three years, I’ve come up with a few things I’d love to do. Last year I started to seriously research a few. Here’s a list of my somewhat unconventional, but hopeful, possible business ventures.

Create my own nail polish

Last year I was feeling a bit down, and every time I do I try to focus on something new. It happened to be nail polish this time. I knew indie polish was a thing already, so I set to work researching what supplies I’d need and how to use them. It’s definitely something I’d like to pursue further.

As of right now, I have my eye on some mica powder samples I want to get so I can mix some colors. This project is going to need a little bit of an investment. Besides the powders for coloring, you need bottles, brushes, and suspension bases. Fortunately, there are kits with all this included. I figure I can buy a kit for the experimentation phase. Once I have colors I like and I’m sure this is really something I want to keep doing, I can invest in my own favorite suspension bases and packaging.

Not gonna lie, part of the reason why I wanted to start blogging was because of this idea. I thought it would be a good idea to have an audience available. Especially one who might be interested in buying from polish from me once I’m ready to start selling. I certainly hope so!

Design my own perfume

I never really thought about an doing this till I heard about a shop called Love Potion. They sell pheromone perfumes, which you can take that or leave it, but the perfumes are great! I ordered several samples a few years ago and still use them.

I read a few posts here and there about how they make their perfumes. It occurred to me that, just like any other cosmetic item, people probably make their own, hand-made perfumes. And they most certainly do. I would love to get into it. I’ve even already purchased a trial kit of a whole bunch of essential oils to start mixing scents.

This project would probably be more for myself than something I would sell. It’s difficult to sell perfume when your customer can’t be there to sample the product. Also, the health and safety have to be ON POINT. I would need some help with that for sure. I’d consider it if my little indie nail polish venture became a big thing, and I wanted to branch out into other cosmetics (and oh god, do I ever).

Curate a boutique

One of my favorite ideas for SURE. I’m already trying it with some affiliate products. It’s more difficult than it seems, though. I think I might set up a mini catalog of my favorite things here on the blog. I’m not sure if that looks greedy, though? Really, I just want curate fashion into buyable selections. I know I don’t have the time, money, or business acumen to actually run my own boutique, at least not right now. I figure this is the next best thing. Baby steps.

It’s a little bit of a childhood dream for me. I wanted to be a fashion designer forever, which is really the thing that got me into 3D. I could make clothes and accessories without the costs. Ironically enough, I hardly ever make any clothing. My favorite non-hair related thing to make is shoes, so I guess I’m at least a little bit in the accessory game.

Open another hair shop in SL

I’ve actually already invested a ton of time in this and before my PC died last month, this is what I was working on. I still have a lot of work to do on it, but I’m at a point where I could almost start releasing product.

Though I already run a hair shop, I feel like it’s reputation is badly damaged. By having a product that was so different from what everyone else was doing, it was confusing for a lot of customers to use. I changed my products, but I don’t think I’ve ever recovered from that initial confusion. Plus, I have given away way too much free product. I allowed myself to be devalued.

So what I want to do is start something new, under a new name and see how it goes from there. Definitely no more devaluation and my best work forward. I still want to be innovative, but also stay user-friendly.

Open a clothing shop on SL

I’ve always thought modeling clothing (in 3D, I mean) would be pretty difficult. I’ve done it before a few times but my texturing skills and a distinct lack of an eye for detail have held me back. I’m rethinking that mindset entirely. If I want to do it, I can learn, right? Plus, since I’ve been paying more attention to clothing lately, the ideas are coming more naturally. I’m not sure I want to do yet another virtual world thing, though.

Run a fashion blog

As you can tell, I’m sort of here! I really want to focus on fashion, but what I want to do is a lot of work. Plus I need to be able to buy clothes. With my weight loss, the only clothing I’ll be investing in for awhile will be transition clothing. Which I’ll probably still post about, but to keep the blog fresh, I need consistent content. I don’t see that happening in the fashion sector for a while, so I’ve chosen a broader approach with a lifestyle blog. Plus, with such varied interests, I tend to get bored of one thing if I do it too long. Who knows what this blog could grow into right? I like the open options if there’re opportunities for “spinoff” niche blogs.

Sell graphics for bloggers

This is my most recent obsession. I started making my own graphics for social media and I’m hooked. I’m not surprised. I’d been considering making graphics for Twitch.tv streamers before I started blogging. I may still do that.

Graphic design was originally what I had planned to do as a side job after getting my BFA. I wanted a Masters in game design, but well, that didn’t exactly work out. Perhaps in the future, though.

So I do already have a graphic design background, I just really hated actually doing it for clients. Now, in 2016, we have marketplaces like Envato and Creative Market. That would allow me to create whatever I wanted, on my own schedule. I’ll still have to deal with people, of course, but I wouldn’t be constantly bound to clients. I like this sort of set up much more.

Start seriously streaming on Twitch.tv 

Speaking of Twitch! This is another thing I’ve been planning for awhile. I used to stream all the time, back before Twitch was even Twitch. I ended up busy with work and lost all my following.

Now, I want to start over again and possibly become a streamer of some moderate success. Gaming takes up a lot of time and I’m not sure I could juggle streaming, blogging, and my SL store. I’ll certainly give it a try, though.I know you all have things you want to accomplish. I want to hear all about them! Write in the comments your life goals, or drop a link to a blog post you’ve written about them.

What do you want to do?

I know you all have things you want to accomplish. I want to hear all about them! Write in the comments your life goals, or drop a link to a blog post you’ve written about them.

Steph’s Discover Playlist: September 5, 2016

Listen With Me - September 5

Playlist sharing, because I love music

This is a weekly sharing of my Spotify Discover playlist.  I update every Monday with the new weekly list. Hope you enjoy and find something you like!

This week’s playlist features 30 songs and has a runtime of 1 hour and 55 minutes.

Possible genres

I listen to a variety of music styles, most recently:

  • indie electronica
  • trance
  • trap
  • some pop (mostly ya gurl Lana Del Rey), and
  • chill versions of all the aforementioned.

This week’s play list is pretty chill.

Share this post!

Spread the love of music ♥

Listen With Me - September 5

Coconut Secret: The Secret to Soy-Free Asian Sauces

Soy-Free Asian sauces

I love Asian style food. I’ll often mix soy, teriyaki, and Korean barbecue sauces into my normal, American/western recipes. Unfortunately, I usually have to forgo these sauces when I’m dieting because they have too much sodium, and let’s not even think about the sugar. I’m okay with sugar normally but I find I get the best results when I just nix it from my diet completely. Perhaps my body is less okay with it than me!

I whipped up some sautéed mushrooms to try it out: some beef broth, some Coconut Aminos, and of course the mushrooms. I don’t have any measurements, sorry! When I’m making up stuff for the first time, I tend to just throw things in a pan and adjust as I keep making it.

Anyway, the results were way better than I expected! The mushrooms were absolutely delicious and with how I’ve been eating lately, they felt like a real treat. It’s good to know this is something I can now have on a regular basis. I can also have stir fries again, which is GREAT NEWS because that’s my favorite food. My next step is to try it with some shirataki rice and/or noodles. This could be a great low carb meal I would enjoy even off my diet.

Sweeteners, Flour, snacks… they’ve got it all!

Coconut Secret actually has a full line of products that could replace just about any sugar-related food product. I really want to try the Coconut Nectar. I love syrup and I know I use way too much of it. I’m hoping this is an acceptably tasty alternative so I can replace my Log Cabin Lite with Coconut Nectar. You can actually view a selection of their other products right here on Amazon.

I recently purchased the teriyaki sauce to try as well. I was a little put off by the vinegar smell, but once it’s cooked with food you can’t actually taste the vinegar. Definitely approve of this product as well!

If you’re looking for soy-free, gluten-free, low carb, low sodium, low fat products with high taste, give Coconut Secret a try. You can find their products at Amazon or Whole Foods. Probably a few other stores as well, but these are two that I know of. I’m definitely going to try everything they offer when I get the chance.

Steph’s Discover Playlist: August 29, 2016

Playlist sharing, because I love music

This is a weekly sharing of my Spotify Discover playlist.  I update every Monday with the new weekly list. Hope you can enjoy and find something you like!

This week’s play list features 30 songs and has a runtime of 2 hours and 5 minutes.

Possible genres

I listen to a variety of music styles, most recently:

  • indie electronica
  • trance
  • trap
  • some pop (mostly ya gurl Lana Del Rey), and
  • chill versions of all the aforementioned.

This week’s play list is chill, yet upbeat.

Share this post!

Spread the love of music ♥

Steph’s Discover Play List: August 22, 2016

Play list sharing, because I love music

I want to share a lot of different play lists, but curating music is definitely a feat! For now, I’m going to share my Discover play lists from Spotify. They’re pretty accurate to what I like to listen to. I’ll be updating every Monday with the new weekly lists. Hope you enjoy and find something you like!

This week’s play list features 30 songs and has a runtime of 1 hour and 57 minutes. It’s truly a discovery list because the only artist I’ve heard of is Krewella, and I haven’t listen to much of their stuff anyway.

Possible genres

I listen to a variety of music styles, most recently:

  • indie electronica
  • trance
  • trap
  • some pop (mostly ya gurl Lana Del Rey), and
  • chill versions of all the aforementioned.

This week’s play list is heavy on the chill.

Share this post!

Spread the love of music ♥


Spotify Discovery Play List August 22, 2016

Getting a New Phone: Samsung Galaxy Note 7

My phone is basically an extension of my arm. When I can’t get to my computer, it’s important to me to still be connected. Rather just for researching the latest 3D modeling trends, looking up clothing, trying to find the latest in beauty products or just to able to keep in touch with all my friends. I’m also able to monitor any customer issues sent to my email box. Sometimes I’m able to help them without making them wait till I make it back home. Add in all the fun stuff you can do – YouTube, Twitch, Netflix – and it’s no wonder why I find it hard to part with some sort of phone or tablet device.

Time for an upgrade

Last year, my two year upgrade was available. At the time, I wasn’t really excited about any of the phones that were out then. I wanted to continue with the Galaxy line but the S6 wasn’t super appealing to me, especially after my sister had issues with her So Edge running slowly. Plus, I knew if I got the 6, I’d be missing out on my chance to grab a phone with lucky number 7. Totally a reason to pick a device, right?

The well, truly, I didn’t really have to wait for long. The Galaxy S7 came out shortly after I was eligible. The problem was that most of the phone companies have changed how customers buy their phones. In lieu of the two year contract, you now purchase the phone over monthly payments. This is in addition to whatever your service bill is. The thought of paying full price for a phone was daunting, though I suppose in a contract you would pay for it anyway. Either way, I couldn’t really afford to pay the extra per month at the time, and my dad wasn’t willing to help me out. I’m still on the family plan because they let me be, so why not!?

Lately I’ve been making more money and my sister and I moved so our bills are a bit cheaper. I figured it was the right time to purchase! After a hiccup with my Verizon account not letting me purchase, I’m so excited to finally be able to buy a new phone! It took a long time, but in a way, I’m glad it did.

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is out tomorrow!

The Galaxy Note 7 is coming out on August 19th (that’s tomorrow!). It went on pre-sale the day I was trying to sort out my account information. I was so annoyed by all the hiccups, but it really worked out. The Note 7 is basically an upgraded version of the S7 Edge, the phone I had originally planned to purchase. I’ve always wanted to try the S-Pen, too. Well, I suppose I’ve had a little experience with it thanks to my friend’s Note 3.

I put in my order on the 16th, it shipped on the 17th, and by tomorrow I should have it. I’m so excited! Once I’ve received it, I have several phone related posts I want to do. If you’re interested, please come back again to check them out!

Working through the seemingly impossible

Two days ago I found myself in what seemed like an impossible situation. I had 19 hours to complete something that normally takes me up to 4 days. To top it off, this PC was starting to show possible configuration issues. I’ve been trying different things to see if it will work better, but that day with 19hrs to go, I didn’t have time to mess around.

Finishing this project was important because it’s going to be my only source of income for most of the month. I’m not even 100% sure I’ll make it into my biggest event at the end of the month due to their selection process. So at 10am, I got to work. By 2:30am I was all set up and as expected, totally ready for bed.

It wasn’t without its ups and downs. My original idea would have been impossible to finish in time. The back up file was 2 days older than my last edit. I had been trying something new and it was taking me extra time to learn and develop good techniques. Had I had the right file, I definitely could have finished it.

Unfortunately, it looked like I was going to need to start from scratch. My worst fear. I’ve created other things in one day before the but that was years ago and not at the quality I can, and have to if I want to make any money, create today. I had to choose something that I knew I’d be able to finish quickly, while also minimizing the use of features that could give me fits when uploading, if I was going to be able to finish. 

On top of that, my computer would go through crashing “cycles”. It would constantly crash several times and then be okay for a length of time. Then it would start right back up again. Sometimes the program I was working in would crash and I couldn’t reopen it until I restarted. Then I would be exporting a file and suddenly that would stop working. Basically, if it could go wrong, it did. 

Despite all these issues, I successfully completed something I thought I would never be able to do. And I even had nearly 2hrs to spare.

So what does this story have to do with anything? I wanted to share an example of what people can do when they put their mind to it, even and perhaps especially in tight situations. Don’t get discouraged if you find yourself having to shift focus at the last minute. If you’re determined enough, you may be able to accomplish things that you thought you couldn’t. You can always go back to your original idea later.

Looks like I’m back in business

Of course, right after I announce a crisis, my luck turns around. Not that it’s a bad thing. It just seems silly to scream doomsday one minute then declare that everything is fine the next. And fortunately, everything will be mostly fine.

My sister was kind enough to make the 2 hour trek to bring the PC I had left upstate with my dad. That means I’ll still be able to get work done, and I’ll also continue doing cute and fun things like making graphics for this blog! It will also be easier for me to document my progress while setting up my blog. Expect lots of screenshots!

This is going to be an interesting few weeks for sure. I opted for Windows 10 on this computer just so I could give it a try. I haven’t updated on my main PC because I’m afraid it won’t run certain games right or it might mess up a program I use for work.

So far it’s been great, but Photoshop is giving me a little trouble. The context menus are FAR too large. Many run beyond the bottom of the screen so I have to scroll to see all the options. This wouldn’t be a problem, but to scroll I have to use an arrow key. Real annoying. Plus the larger text is kind of ugly.

Anyway, I just wanted to make a quick post with an update for the day. It’s Sunday and in my whole blog plan I’d like to take Sundays off, but since I don’t have much content here yet, I wanted to make a post anyway. Hope you’ve had an awesome weekend and the work week ahead isn’t too strenuous. Bye for now!

I am PCless for 2-3 weeks! Ugh!

Go figure. As soon as it’s time to start work on two new SL events… my PC dies. Due to me being about a 2hr drive away from the one person I know who will fix and upgrade it for free (thank you, dear father) and me not driving, I won’t have anything until my sister comes down here to get ready to go back to law school, which is about two or three weeks away.

I’m not sure exactly what happened. I was taking a nap when I heard a noise and my computer shut off. At first I thought it was the power (our power had been out once for 5 hours the week before), but after walking into the kitchen, I noticed the clocks on the oven and microwave still working. So then I thought maybe a fuse. I went to check the box but everything seemed okay. I started to head back into my room, thinking it must be something with my PC. Then came the burning smell.

I rushed into my room and unplugged the power strip. Nothing was on fire at least, thank god. But then the realization that my PC had probably fried sunk in. I went to work opening the case and inspecting each part to find out which one was damaged and began texting my dad with details of the issue. We assumed it was the power supply, seeing as it was clearly overheating inside anytime I tried to turn it on.

My dad was able to overnight me a new PSU (thank you Amazon!) which had we been a little bit faster, I could have had it delivered in a few hours with Prime Now. They sold out before my dad could get around to ordering for me. That’s okay though, because I ended up with a 1000w PSU instead of an 850w. I won’t use all that, but as long as this one doesn’t break as well, I’ve got a piece I can use through many hardware upgrades. I had my last one for around 5 years, which I think is a pretty good run considering todays quickly changing PC standards and the frequency and stress I put my machine through.

Anyway, I received the part and installed it; there were a few cables I found I had to switch out so they would fit in the new connectors so it took a little bit longer than anticipated. Unfortunately, my PC still won’t turn on. My worst fears – the motherboard is probably fried. Good news and bad news. Bad news is obviously that I’ll be without my PC for so long AND my backup PC that I keep just for times like this is also still with my dad, as I had left it with him to upgrade it into 2016 when last I was in town. Good news: I’ll finally get a processor upgrade! I suppose I don’t ~really~ need one, processing speed isn’t too much faster than what I have now, but it’s the only piece in my rig that hasn’t been upgraded in awhile, so I just want something fresh. Plus I’m only getting my speeds because it’s overclocked. It’d be nice to have something that runs the same or better as the default.

So yes, I’m really sad about this. I won’t be able to play through all of the Overwatch Olympics event (I still need to get that Mercy skin!) and I won’t get to play No Man’s Sky on my PC. Oh and of course yeah, I can’t work. I’m just glad that due to a pretty successful summer season, I’ve got a little cushion so I can still buy things like FOOD. And even have some left over for the non essentials like No Man’s Sky and a new phone (finally!).

Plus, my store still “runs” itself. People can still buy things and I can still cash out. In the long run though, not participating in sales events hurts stores, and I may not be able to do my best performing event. It happens at the end of the month, so I’m not giving up hope that there’s still a chance I can participate.

At least I have my laptop so I can continue to work on my blog. It’s super old, from 2007, so it’s not as fast as I’d like, it’s still running Windows Vista (not even 64 bit), and I’ve only got old copies of Photoshop on it (CS4, ugh). I suppose it will do for now. Everything will be a bit more frustrating to deal with, but it’s something.

I’ve been wanting to work on a blog for awhile and now I can do it without having to stop and do work things. I’ll probably give creating a shot still, but the last time I was confined to this laptop, it didn’t work out too well. So I’ll just create content for whomever feels like reading this. It’s good to have posts queued up and ready to go anyway. Plus I still need to unpack a lot of things from the move and arrange my living room so it’s not such a mess. Suddenly glad I didn’t work with all that until now.

Time is precious, don’t ever forget that!

First post! Super excited!

I feel really cliche in writing this, but here I am, making my first post on this blog. I’m excited because though I’ve done blogging in the past, even before things like WordPress existed and Blogger was just starting out, I don’t think I ever did it SERIOUSLY. It was mostly a thing for my friends and myself. It was a place to write down my thoughts and random things I did that day.

However, I want to really get back into it again, and this time on a much larger scale. I’ve always wanted to do a fashion blog or a gaming blog. I’ve kept putting it off saying I’m not ready to take photos or I don’t feel like taking pictures of myself, but I really regret waiting this long to start. I guess I’m a little bored now. Maybe I just want to try something new. Whatever the case, I’ve decided to take the number one advice I’ve seen out there for people who want to start a blog; just start one!

At first I was worried about content, but I’ve made a list of things I can write about, I’ve studied other blogs, and I’ve done a lot of research into how to pick topics. I suddenly realized that I actually have a lot to talk about and a lot of advice to share as well. Even just writing this paragraph, I’ve thought of something I could share with people. In fact, once I started writing this post, I realized it might be beneficial to document my progress in creating this blog.

Perhaps no one will see it now, but hopefully, eventually, putting my entire thought process out there just might help some other beginning blogger. I’m thankful for all of the people out there who have shared their experience to help us newbies out, so why not give back as well?

Anyway, that’s it for now. I’m really looking forward to this new journey and I hope many others follow along the way. Perhaps I should have started with an introduction post, but I think I’ll save it for my “About Me”. In any case, here goes nothing!