Animal Crossing New Leaf QR Code: Pink Party Dress

I kind of missed Christmas and New Year’s and the last six months more or less. But believe it or not—I live! I got The Winter 2014 issue of ぴこぷり in the mail last week. It has a lot of cute dresses in it. Many of which are Christmas-themed. There are a couple I may have to make even though the holiday is past.

I chose to copy the party dress pattern submitted by Mikumiku of Chiba prefecture. It would have been great for New Year’s if I had completed it in time, but I think it will be pretty for Valentine’s day too.

Enjoy!

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Happy New Year! Here’s hoping no psychotic clown sheep land in your town this year!

And Now a Message from our Sponsors: A Keurig 2.0 review

Last month my friend excitedly told me that he had ditched his expensive coffee maker with attached burr grinder for a Keurig 2.0. I scoffed at him as befitting the coffee snob who encouraged him to get a burr grinder in the first place. I haven’t actually owned a commercial coffee maker (Breville dual boiler espresso machine notwithstanding) in at least five years. When I want a cup of coffee I generally make a french press with some locally roasted coffee.

The irony of this coffee snob story is that the very next day I got an email from Influenster saying “Surprise! We’re sending you a Keurig 2.0 to test and review!” And I was ashamedly looking forward to it. I haven’t ever tried a Keurig, and have only ever noticed the army of k-cups filling the aisles of Bed Bath & Beyond. I never really wanted one. But since I was getting one I decided to investigate what I was getting.

I read a few reviews and found that most of the people who loathe the Keurig 2.0 are those that owned a previous model. The short story is that the previous version would happily brew k-cups from any manufacturer, up to and including reusable cups that you could fill with your very own coffee (read this as: Keurig not making as much profit from you as they feel they should) and so the 2.0 has something akin to DRM. It reads the label off the top of the k-cup and stolidly refuses to brew off-brands. Much like the Sony CD DRM that could be thwarted with a sharpie, the Keurig DRM has a similarly easy workaround. To brew whatever k-cup you want, just cut off the top of a spent 2.0 k-cup and keep handy. If you have a rebel off-brand k-cup you want to brew, simply set the top of the 2.0 k-cup label on top of it and you’re good to go. Not that I would ever endorse that type of behavior…

When my Keurig 2.0 arrived I immediately set it up and decided to make a carafe since that’s one of the big selling points of the new model. Their version of a carafe is a little laughable—either that or my idea of a cup of coffee is inflated. It supposedly makes about 4 cups of coffee, but I think you’re very lucky to get 3 out of it. The included plastic carafe is a little lacking. You can buy a stainless steel carafe for about $30. Influenster sent me one of those too and there’s no going back to the plastic one. My main gripe about the carafe is that you have to choose between using the drip tray for a single cup of coffee, or using the carafe. There’s not a spot for both on the machine at once, so you’re left with one or the other hanging around your kitchen. I wish the carafe could just sit on top of the drip tray to save space.

While we’re talking about saving space, what do you do with all of the k-cups? If you buy more than one kind like I did because—research—then you have to figure out where to put the boxes or the individual cups themselves. They make solutions for this of course. In full disclosure, Influenster sent me a carousel that nicely holds my regular k-cups and my carafe cups, but this too takes up a ton of space and I just didn’t want it invading my limited counter space. I also don’t feel I need to wow visitors with my jaw dropping coffee selection, so it now revolves unloved in the pantry.

I would be remiss if while on the subject of space I didn’t mention the environmental impact of all the little cups too. The k-cups are apparently fully recyclable in Canada, but here in the U.S. it’s a bit of a grey area. They’re plastic #7 and some places recycle them. Some don’t. So there’s that.

With all of my nitpicky ranting you would think that I dislike the machine. I’m quite sad to say I don’t dislike it at all. I use it almost every day even if some of its use is to dispense hot water for my instant oatmeal. The hot water dispenser is my favorite feature even if I do often have to run it twice to avoid coffee-flavored oatmeal. And as I’m typing this I’m sipping a Café Escapes Café Mocha (even though I think that calling this beverage a mocha is laughable. It’s more like hot cocoa with a little caffeine kick. Mochas should have steamed milk. Sorry Keurig 2.0, but you don’t steam milk. Maybe next iteration).

The Keurig 2.0 does its job well. It makes single cups of coffee almost instantly with just the press of a button. And the variety of coffee available for it is astounding (not even counting the off-brands). After getting my machine I made it a point to visit the coffee aisle at the grocery store and see what they had. My biggest complaint about that experience was that I couldn’t tell if the boxes the stores carried were 2.0 or not. They’re not well-labeled in that regard, but none of the Keurig brand coffee I purchased was 1.0, so maybe I didn’t have to worry? I did have a hard time finding k-carafe cups. I saw them at Macy’s while Christmas shopping, and at Target, but none of my grocery stores had them. And when I did find K-carafe cups the selection was abysmal. There doesn’t seem to be nearly as much variety as with regular k-cups. Even on Keurig’s online shop there are only 10 different carafe packs (I think I saw maybe 3 different ones in stores).

My biggest deterrent from the Keurig 2.0 is the cost of the coffee itself. K-cups are anywhere from $10-18 for 16-24 cups. It almost makes my $17 bag of coffee seem reasonable. The carafes are even more expensive at around $15 for 8 cups. I feel like I’ve gotten a free printer and now I have to keep paying for outrageous amounts for ink all the time. My advice to you: save all those $5 off coupons from Bed Bath & Beyond. I know I’ve found a renewed use for them.

I didn’t really mention how the coffee was. Is it mind blowing, earth shattering, with notes of green popsicles and currants? No. It’s coffee. Some of it’s bitter. Some of it’s good. I personally hated all the flavored ones. The vanilla one? Vile. The hazelnut? Like scented water. But that’s personal preference and I’m pretty sure after shelling out some money to try a few different types you can find something you like. None of it is going to taste as good as a hand pour at your local shop. It’s not supposed to. At 4:30 in the morning as my husband heads out the door to work with a hot cup of coffee in hand I bet it’s pretty much ambrosia though.

P.S. I received a Keurig 2.0 450, carousel, and stainless steel carafe complimentary from Influenster for testing/reviewing purposes.
P.P.S. I never received those additional k-cups you said you’d send, Influenster. It’s OK. I just tell myself you would have sent me Folger’s Gourmet and I’m ok without them. </coffee snob>

5 New Japanese 3DS Themes

Animal Crossing New Leaf: Town Hall Isabelle

Top Screen

Bottom Screen

Isabelle daydreams about your selected game instead of doing all her desk work and sending the letters you have stacked up for her (your folders).

Animal Crossing New Leaf: Notice Board Isabelle

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This one is my favorite. Isabelle waves next to the town notice board. Flowers line the bottom of the screen.

I didn’t buy all the Animal crossing themes. There were five. There’s also a Mable, Sable, and the twins. I might pick them up when I need a change of eye candy.

Yo-kai Watch: Jibanyan

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If you’re not familiar with this kitty, I hope someday you will be. This is Jibanyan from the Level 5 game Yo-Kai watch. His eyes move as you scroll through your games.

Monster Hunter: Monster Hunter Carved Seal Icons

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This Monster Hunter Theme features the “puppets” on the bottom screen from MH4. They dance as you scroll through your games. The top screen shows carved/burnt in looking icons of the monsters you fight.

Monster Hunter: Airou is your friend

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This lighthearted theme showcases Airou, your cat friend from the game and Poogie! the pig. The folder has Airou’s cat paw on it.

Those are all of the themes I purchased on my first trip to the theme shop. I hope we see some of these in NA soon!

Animal Crossing New Leaf: Marshal, Marshal, Marshal!!!

It seems like my Animal Crossing games know when I’m going to busy or on vacation. I got up at 4am Friday morning in order to drive to Las Vegas with a stop in Orange County to drop off Sophie and pick up a kitten to deliver in Vegas (ugh). I planned to play video games the entire way and be very productive—mostly I napped in the car at awkward angles until Sophie woke me up squawking. She doesn’t travel well.

At some point I gave up trying to sleep and turned on Animal Crossing. It was Soleil’s birthday. I had completely forgotten and didn’t have a gift. Fortunately the cell phone reception down I5 has gotten much better, so I was able to look up what she likes and order something.

I kind of want to start saying Elvis' name much like Seinfeld says "Newman".

I kind of want to start saying Elvis’ name much like Seinfeld says “Newman”.

I gave her a floor she supposedly likes. I never give floors as birthday presents.

I gave her a floor she supposedly likes. I never give floors as birthday presents.


Then I noticed that it was Cole’s birthday the very next day and I had to order a present for him too. Geez, don’t they know I’m trying to relax??!

I also got great news that my friend Chris had gotten Marshal for me in his cycling town. I don’t cycle, so I had no idea how long it would take to get him to move, but bright and early at 8:30 the next morning Chris had Marshal in boxes and I was able to collect him. ♥ Thank you!!!!!

"It's decided! By the way, what's the name of your village?...Kasen village?"

“It’s decided! By the way, what’s the name of your village?…Kasen village?”

Thank you thank you thank you thank you!!!!

Thank you thank you thank you thank you!!!!

So every morning following I was terribly excited to start up Kasen and see where Marshal had set up residence, and of course meet him.

He didn’t pick the best spot, he moved in just south of my tower and ripped out bushes and stumps, but I don’t even care. In fact, I joke that his house is the prince park tower—a hotel in Tokyo right next to Tokyo Tower. I stayed there when I went to Japan.

This was the view from our room:

Tokyo Tower at Night

Tokyo Tower at Night

Marshal's house location. Note the tower just behind his house.

Marshal’s house location. Note the tower just behind his house.

While I was waiting impatiently for Marshal to move in I visited Cole for his birthday and gave him a dark polka shirt. Muffy was partying with him. She’s kinda cute. We haven’t quite grown on one another yet, but I like her way better than Elvis.

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Yesterday Marshal’s house landed. I was so excited to go help him unpack…but the Vegas sun wakes me up early and he was asleep still. Argh!!

"I'm sorry but could you please let me sleep a little more?"

“I’m sorry but could you please let me sleep a little more?”

When I finally did get to welcome him, he was still asleep…standing up. OMG THE CUTENESS!

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Since he was busy unpacking and refused my help, I danced with him a little to wake him up and then left.

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Today was the first day I saw him out and about. He was fishing. And we chatted about air mail deliveries.

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We had a camper today. Finally I can enter a tent without worrying that it will be Marshal and I won’t have room! There are a couple other townies I would be sad to see while I have a full town, but this bird? Not one of them.

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I paid a visit to Muffy who, like Marshal, also seems to be narcoleptic. She wanted me to get her a rare bug, but I’ve been awake since 5am and I’m not feeling up to doing difficult favors.

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Obon?

I’ve been meaning to mention that this Friday is Obon in my Japanese game. I will open up Kasen so you can come over, get your eggplant cow or cucumber horse—I hope Isabelle behaves this year. Last year she gave out cucumber horses almost exclusively. Feel free to come over with multiple characters to attempt to get both (and don’t forget to say hi to Marshal!). I’m still not quite up to 500 people for my hosting badge, so the more the merrier. I will open from 10am-noon (GMT -8) Friday August 15 and if requested again in the afternoon/evening.

My birthday is the next day along with the bug-off. I’m going to be ooooooold. :P But I comfort myself in knowing that Kokuto will always be older.

And then Sunday is the fireworks festival.

And I say nothing happens in my birth month!

P.S. I received a US copy of Animal Crossing New Leaf from Nintendo. Thanks, Nintendo!
P.P.S. This update would not be possible without Mayor Chris. Thank you!!!!!

ACNL Hide & Seek Camo Shirt QR Code

ぴこぷり has a lot more dresses than shirts, and the shirts it does have are often girly—this month has two that remind of some ’80s Madonna wear, but this one could be considered unisex. The animal peeking out from the tree makes it adorable [See if you can spot him in QR #1]. I gave it to りゅうじ since he’s often neglected with respect to his wardrobe.

He put it on and went to say hello to our new neighbor, Muffy.

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