Non-Gamey Creative Projects

I’ve not been playing too many games of late, mostly because work has been too busy and pre-XMAS time is usually packed with birthday parties and other social events over here. I’ve started tackling several home improvement projects too, such as turning our spare guest room into an atelier / hobby room so I can get back to some of the crafty hobbies I used to pursue, like water coloring or pottery. I’m also madly in love with bottle charms right now which is a project I definitely want to have a go at, soon – how cute are they?!

charms

image @ deviantart.com

I’ve been doing more cooking experiments again, baking a little (although I’m not very good at that) and trying recipes from my childhood. I love Asian cuisine, particularly Middle-Eastern and Thai food and I’m slowly getting into a bit of Japanese cooking too. I had the opportunity to enjoy some Okonomiyaki (aka Japanese savoury pancakes) the other day which are easy to prepare, highly flexible and very tasty if you’re into cabbage. I am definitely gonna make more of that!

My most recent project is a 30L nanocube aquarium which I received as an early birthday present from the better half. We’ve had many different fish tanks over the years, starting off small with fish like Tiger barbs before upgrading to bigger tanks with Mbuna cichlids, then downgrading again to only a single fish tank with one grumpy looking Channa Pulchra (snakehead). I’ve had a thing for siamese fighting fish, aka Bettas, for a while now and since they’re a solitary breed perfect for smaller tanks, a nanocube is a great solution that also fits perfectly in my gamer room. Meet Rubeeo!

rubioo

I’ve spent the weekend planting an all natural habitat for my new roomie, including sand substrate and plenty of water plants to allow for cover and a sleeping nest. Betta Splendens tend to “park” themselves on big leaves or shrubbery for rest which is incredibly cute to watch. They’re labyrinth fish, meaning  they breathe atmospheric air that gets stored in a special organ in their head, and they’re bubble nest breeders which is rather interesting if you’re into observing the natural behavior of animals. Bettas are obviously popular for their splendid colors first and foremost but there’s a lot more to them and personally, I like how attentive and responsive these little guys are.

Planting the nanocube was very enjoyable and I’m already thinking of ways to improve my initial setting – although for now, what it really requires is patience. I hope that my carpet plants will expand over the coming months for a fully overgrown ground level. Aqua Scaping is a patient art and there’s a lot you can learn on the way to an all-natural looking and balanced underwater environment. I’ve a feeling this could be pretty addictive too!

What creative endeavors have you been up to lately?

7 comments

  1. First time I realize you’re an experienced fishkeeper! That tank looks gorgeous!

    Excellent, I have someone’s brains to pick when I finally organize my house sufficiently to fit a tank in… and inevitably run into problems as a newbie. :)

    I’ve read Practical Fishkeeping for years, just dreaming about aquariums, but there’s never been any room nor time for one more hobby until I seriously declutter. (Which has been this year’s sporadic project and miiight finish first quarter next year…maybe.)

    1. @Jeromai
      Thank you very much! I must say nanocubes really are tons of fun, I could see myself getting into this but no space, hehe!

      That said, it’s perfect for beginning and bettas are awesome fish too. Having been through many tanks over the years and different fish, we’ve come to the conclusion that less is a lot more in aquariums. :) And I really love all natural environment, I don’t understand people who choose plastic plants and pink pearls for soil…..uhhh! Don’t do that :P hehe, am happy to help!

  2. I love your aquarium! Really pretty picture of your red fish, too. It’s been ages since I had fish – back in the day I hated the cleaning, but I didn’t have money to buy a good circulator (is that the word?). This wants me to get new fish, though.

    My creative life has mostly revolved around drawing lately. I bore everyone to death with them on my blog, since they have nothing to do with gaming…

    1. Drawing is awesome! :) I wish I did more of it these days, I also have a wacom pad so it would be fun to learn digital painting but finding good tutorials is kinda hard?

      I feel you on maintenance. However, me and the better half have experimented a lot with natural filtering systems and ecosystems over the years, and there’s setups that virtually run themselves. No cleaning! So I recommend next time you give it a shot, read up on that or start small with a nanocube. They’re super fun.

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