Mr. Roberts

Roberts fam

Samuel Roberts is the school janitor. He may not be very bright, but he sure is handy. And he’s nice. He’ll shout your name from across to street and come running up to you just to say hi. Certain teens in school are rather embarrassed by this, but Samuel is also liked by many kids and teens. Samuel still lives in the trailer he used to live in with his mother and sister. His sister has long moved away, they don’t see each other a lot anymore, and his mum died a few years ago.

  • Age: Adult
  • Born: June 1958
  • Traits: Good sense of humor, easily impressed, excitable, handy, friendly
  • Job: Janitor
  • Zodiac: Gemini
  • Father: Unknown
  • Mother: Mrs. Roberts
  • Siblings: Sophia
  • Children: –
  • Other family:
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: Samuel isn’t that lucky in love. Women are never very impressed by him. The only woman he ever loved was his mum.

The Richardson family

The Richardson Family

Richardson fam 2

WillOliviaFinn

Firefighter Will, teacher Olivia and their son Finn make up the Richardson family. Well technically, Jill is also part of this family. but she started University in 05.
Click their names to visit their personal pages.

Home

The Richardson family lives in Orange Blossom, Honeycomb Valley’s main residential district. There’s no tour of their home yet. A picture will follow soon.

The Porter family

Porter fam

Mason Porter knew when he was very young that he wanted to be in the military. Not because he wanted to fight. Oh no. Quite the contrary. Mason wanted to help people. Help people and travel. So military school it was. After he met Julia, he really wanted a big family, but that never happened. Thankfully they did have Lily. Mason is proud of his daughter with whom he has so much in common.

  • Age: Adult
  • Born: July 1952
  • Traits: Brave, hopeless romantic, family oriented, friendly, adventurous
  • Job: Soldier
  • Zodiac: Cancer
  • Father: Mr. Porter
  • Mother: Mrs. Porter
  • Siblings: –
  • Children: Lily
  • Other family: –
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: Mason had some girlfriends when he was younger. Because he had to travel a lot for his job, none of the relationships lasted very long. This was unfortunate for Mason who loved his job and all the traveling, but is also a romantic at heart and a true family man. But with Julia, it lasted.

Julia Porter-Cox was the kind of girl you didn’t notice in class. She sat quietly by herself and did her work. She didn’t have a lot of friends growing up. Julia always loved science and was always interested in finding out how things work. She studied science after high school and started working as a scientist soon after getting her degree. She always wanted a family, but that usually enquires a partner first and she did not think any guy would ever like her. Thankfully, Mason did.

  • Age: Adult
  • Born: January 1950
  • Traits: Family oriented, shy, friendly, nurturing, genius
  • Job: Scientist
  • Zodiac: Capricorn
  • Father: Mr. Cox
  • Mother: Mrs. Cox
  • Siblings: –
  • Children: Lily
  • Other family: –
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: Julia never really had a boyfriend before she met Mason. She had LIKED boys, and men, but never had the courage to go up to them. She met Mason when her cousin invited her to her housewarming party. Julia, not the social gathering type, felt rather uncomfortable and sat by herself in the furthest corner she could find with a glass of wine. Mason was there too and felt bad for the girl looking so out of place, so he came to sit with her and even managed to get a smile out of her. They chatted all night and he asked her out on a date when it was time for her to go home.

Lily Porter is an absolute romantic, just like her dad. She has been together with her fiance Harry forever. Oh how happy she was when he proposed! Even if the wedding is still quite a bit away, since Harry has to finish University first, it still feels good to be able to call him her fiance now. Lily is not going to university. Being eco friendly, she has decided she wants a career taking care of nature and got a job as a gardener.

  • Age: Young adult
  • Born: November 1982
  • Traits: Hopeless romantic, adventurous, family oriented, friendly, eco friendly
  • Job: Gardener
  • Zodiac: Scorpio
  • Father: Mason
  • Mother: Julia
  • Siblings: –
  • Children: –
  • Other family: –
  • Best friend(s): Harry
  • Romance history: Lily and her fiance Harry have been an inseparable couple since they were kids. Her best friend since she was five and her boyfriend since she was fifteen, Lily can’t imagine a life without Harry.

Stories
In bold where (one of the sims in) this family has a main part.
* October 03: The Harvest Festival
December 03: Happy New Year!

The Aquarium

The aquarium is mostly aimed at children, but I’m sure many of my angler sims will like to visit this place too. Although, you’re not supposed to fish here…

This was the first time I went in to the aquarium in life mode, and I see I clearly need some more fog emitters in the aquarium to create more fishes and bubbles.

Another giftshop…

… and another cafe!

Bumblebee Square

Not so long ago, I named my town Honeycomb Valley. I didn’t just pick this name out of thin air.
When I built my school, I named it “The Beehive”, because I felt that name was very fitting for a school, buzzing with kids of all ages. When the time came to move my Simmies over from my old Sunset Valley to a new Sunset Valley, I felt a new name was in order to. I figured that maybe the name of the school would make even more sense if the town has a bee associated name too. That maybe the town even had a long beekeeping history. My dear friends over at Simset Boulevard helped me pick and that’s how the town got its name: Honeycomb Valley. 

Then, I figured, the different districts in town should have bee related names too. After some thinking I decided each district would get a name of a certain type of bee. My downtown district (which already existed in Sunset Valley, I just moved all the lots over to the new hood) got the name Honeybee Quarter and the new district (which I’m currently building up) is called Bumblebee Quarter. (I know, how original am I, right? 😉 )

The first part of Bumblebee Quarter I’m “filling” was this HUGE piece of land surrounded on three sides by roads and on one side by mountains. I filled this part with big and small lots, like a puzzle, and am now building there. I decided this part would have a big square surrounded by museums, places to eat and some houses; Bumblebee Square.

So, here we are; the first things have been build. The square in its entirety is far from finished yet, but I’m at the point where I can show you some things.

Bumblebee Square:


The layout of Bumblebee Square at this moment (25 July). You can see the lots that are finished (or finished for now, I will most likely end up tweaking them numerous times still 😉 ) and the plans I have for the empty lots.

The Main Square

Now, let’s start with the most difficult one of all first; the main square. I say difficult, for two reasons. One, it was very hard to take pictures here. In tab-mode it looked to stretched out and in normal mode the trees disappeared when I got too close, so I don’t have many pictures yet. And two; I like a lot of things about the main square, but I’m still not completely satisfied. I still find it a bit “empty” and lacking something, but I don’t know what. Any suggestions are welcome.



Jack Clark took on a temporary job as book salesman, apparently. I don’t have enough “available” simmies in my town to take on all register positions, so despite me telling the register mod NOT to use my employed sims, it apparently feels like it’s better to pull someone out of their paying job than to have empty registers around town. I do not agree, but I shall sort this soon by downloading some of my friends’ self sims and putting them behind my registers. (Thank you Sandy for this great idea!) For now, the Honeycomb Valley policeforce doubles behind registers. Yes, wait for it, one of my other lieutenants has been assigned register position too…

  

    

Well, hello there Madison… *rolls eyes*

I’ll introduce the Art Museum and the Aquarium in posts of their own.

The Palmer family

Palmer famZach Palmer is a total geek. Smart, loves to read and ALWAYS behind a computer. He knew so much about computers that he decided to make teaching about them his job. Still, we shouldn’t stereotype Zach too much; because he DOES have other interests aside from books and computers. He loves cooking and is a total family man. Oh how happy he was when his girlfriend Evelyn turned out to be pregnant. He was overjoyed with the birth of Valerie.

  • Age: Young adult
  • Born: November 1972
  • Traits: Computer whiz, bookworm, family oriented, genius, natural cook
  • Job: IT teacher
  • Zodiac: Scorpio
  • Father: Mr. Palmer
  • Mother: Mrs. Palmer
  • Siblings: –
  • Children: Valerie
  • Other family: –
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: Zach didn’t have much luck with the ladies, growing up. But Evelyn was the exception. They had been in the same class since they were kids, but didn’t get close until they discovered they had a shared interest in comic books. For an art assignment they were partnered and decided to make a comic together. Zach thought out the story line and Evelyn drew the pictures. Their friendship was a fact and it all went from there.

Evelyn Robinson has one great passion in life; dancing. She’s been dancing since she was little and nowadays teaches ballet to the little ones. She loves working with kids and knows talent when she sees it. Evelyn also loves to paint and draw and still occasionally works on comics with her boyfriend. She is so happy to be a mum!

  • Age: Young adult
  • Born: July 1974
  • Traits: Athletic, artistic, friendly, family oriented, lucky
  • Job: Ballet teacher
  • Zodiac: Cancer
  • Father: Simon
  • Mother: Helen
  • Siblings: Annabel
  • Children: Valerie
  • Other family: Zoe, Ellie, Vicky (nieces), Justin (nephew)
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: Evelyn had some boyfriends before getting together with Zach, but never felt as comfortable with anyone else as she does with Zach.

Valerie Palmer is a dreamy little girl. She loves playing with paint and play dough and is quite easily distracted. Luckily for her, it´ll be a few years yet before she has to pay attention to school work.

  • Age: Toddler
  • Born: November 2003
  • Traits: Artistic, absent minded
  • Job: –
  • Zodiac: Scorpio
  • Father: Zach
  • Mother: Evelyn
  • Siblings: –
  • Children: –
  • Other family: Simon (granddad), Annabel (aunt) ZoeEllieVickyJustin (cousins)
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: –

Stories
In bold where (one of the sims in) this family has a main part.
August 03: Those Summer Days
* November 03: Autumn Happenings
May 04: Making May Memories
November 04: Courtship
March 05: The Honeycomb Valley Athletic Festival

Mr. Murray and Miss Ward

Murray A fam

Adrian Murray is a “famous” TV presenter. Famous within the town of Honeycomb Valley, that is. And maybe even that is exaggerating. But he feels like a celebrity either way. He lives with his equally famous girlfriend Amelia in one of the most luxurious houses in Honeycomb Valley and looks down on the “little people”. Adrian can’t stand children and doesn’t understand why his brother chose to work with the brats, let alone have three of his own. He really must be crazy…

  • Age: Adult
  • Born: August 1963
  • Traits: Ambitious, charismatic, dislikes children, dramatic, snob
  • Job: TV presenter
  • Zodiac: Leo
  • Father: Mr. Murray
  • Mother: Mrs. Murray
  • Siblings: Elliot
  • Children: –
  • Other family: Seth (nephew), Rachel, Ruby (nieces)
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: When Adrian was younger, girls never showed much interest in him. Even though he had a certain charm, after one date they usually called it a day, using words like “stuck up” and telling him his nose was too far up his own… Well, you get the point. Adrian met Amelia when he interviewed her for Honeycomb TV once.

Amelia Ward has an Olympic bronze medal in swimming. She loves exercise, but she loves fame and fortune even more. Amelia felt getting involved with someone who is also “famous” could help this process along even faster. So when Adrian asked her out, she eagerly agreed. Sure, all he did on the date was talk about himself, but who cares. He had fame! And fortune! And he was rather sexy! And he won’t start moaning about wanting “babies” (really, why would any self respecting woman do that to her body?), what more could a girl want?

  • Age: Young adult
  • Born: October 1975
  • Traits: Athletic, grumpy, dislikes children, dramatic, snob
  • Job: Professional swimmer
  • Zodiac: Libra
  • Father: Mr. Ward
  • Mother: Mrs. Ward
  • Siblings: –
  • Children: –
  • Other family: –
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: Amelia has always been popular with the boys, but most of them weren’t suitable or good enough in her opinion. Adrian meets Amelia’s standards.

Stories
In bold where (one of the sims in) this family has a main part.
January 05: Ice, Ice Baby

Mr. Mills

Mills fam

Onslow Mills is the junkyard manager. Now, that may sound like a high level job, but basically it means he just sits on a chair in a little shed at the junkyard to watch who comes in and what they take. Onslow is known to “take” things himself too. And not just from the junkyard either. He always wears the same clothes; a white tank top, brown corduroy trousers and sandals. Onslow doesn’t really see the purpose in washing.

  • Age: Adult
  • Born: January 1948
  • Traits: Couch potato, inappropriate, heavy sleeper, kleptomaniac, slob
  • Job: Junkyard manager
  • Zodiac: Capricorn
  • Father: Mr. Mills
  • Mother: Mrs. Mills
  • Siblings: –
  • Children: –
  • Other family: –
  • Best friend(s): –
  • Romance history: Had a random woohoo with neighbour Carmen once. Not because she is interested in “that filthy dog”, but because “a woman still has needs, y’ know”.

Stories
In bold where (one of the sims in) this family has a main part.
November 04: Courtship

Gameplay – Education

As I mentioned in my post on time and aging, I have a very thoroughly thought out education system in play in my game. I shall explain it here:

Primary school
I have a big school (I love that place) which took me weeks to build and decorate and has way too much stuff inside. The primary department is situated on the ground floor. There are six classes and kids are in a class with peers their own age. There are three yeargroups and two classes per yeargroup. Not every group has students every year. It depends on how many kids I have of one age. I keep a record of which kids are in which classes, complete with dates of birth etc.There are never more than six kids in a class. This is still something that comes from my schoolsystem in TS2. I couldn’t have more than six in a class then, because when the schoolpictures needed to be taken, all the kids, their teacher and the person taking the picture had to live in the school so I could control them all and get the picture. (I didn’t know how to make families bigger than eight then). Now, with mods and such, this wouldn’t be necessary anymore and I could have classes of over six. But I like it this way. It keeps things manageable.

The age/class system works this way:

Class 1: 5 and 6 year olds. Children start primary school the moment they turn 5. Whether this is in September, December, May or any other month. The month they have their fifth birthday is the month they start school, so technically I can have kids coming in to this class all year round. They leave they summer after they turn 7.

Class 2: 7, 8 and 9 year olds. Children go to this class the summer after they turn 7 and leave the summer after they turn 10. Much like the real life montessori system, kids are the youngest, the middle and the eldest in the class at some point.

Class 3: 10 and 11 year olds. Works the same way as class 2.

Apart from the six classes which are all designed to fit the agegroup occupying the class, the groundfloor of the school has a remedial teaching room, a teachers lounge, a janitor’s cupboard and several restrooms.

High school
My high school is in the same building as my primary school. On the first floor. Here, it’s all a little different. I have specialised classrooms here; Music, maths, world studies (geography and history), IT, science and art. The school gym and the headmistress’ office are also located here. The teachers working here are also specialised, The teens are still in their own agegroup though and the high school teachers all mentor a group.

The age/class system works this way:

Class 4: 12, 13 and 14 year olds. According to the same idea as class 2 and 3 of the primary department.

Class 5: 15, 16 and 17 year olds.

Class 6: 18 and 19 year olds. Teens stay at The Beehive until they are 20. That’s when they age up. I think of class 6 not so much as a regular high school class anymore, but more of a preparation for adult life. Teens can very much choose their own specialities in this class and can either continue to University after this class or start working in a lower paid job immediately.

At the end of high school, I have my teens take the aptitude test that came with the University EP. They can score up to 2400 points on this. I decided on a final exam scorelist that looks like this:

0 – 900 points: No graduation, retake the year.
900 -1200 points: You’ll graduate, but you won’t get accepted into university.
1200 -2000 points: Well done, you’re a graduate now with the possibility to attend university.
2000 – 2400 points: Woah! Excellent score! You’ll graduate with honors and can get a partial scholarship for university.

The entire school (called The Beehive) has a staff of nineteen (!) These nineteen sims all live in my town and have families etc of their own with whom I play. I don’t always play the school, it depends on my mood. Sometimes, when I’m with a certain teacher, or a certain child or teen I want to play the school and send them all there to play. I always play the school when it’s schoolpicture time though. This is every year in May. When I don’t play the school, everyone still goes to school there. The lot has several rabbithole rugs.

University
My lovely simfriend Rachel has created some amazing custom careers that function as University majors. I was fully planning on using those, but eventually found a way to have my sims take classes and also have part time jobs to pay for their education and/or living arrangements. I use Cherry’s evening school mod which I have tuned to my liking. I’m yet to try it out, so I’m not sure all the values I set are okay this way. The lessons are all in the mornings, from 9.00 to 13.00 (1 pm).
I created 9 “majors”. Art, Education, History, Linguistics, Medicine, Music and Science all take 4 years and my simmies have to earn 20 skill points in different areas in those years (idea adopted from the wonderful Sandy). Culinary takes 3 years and my simmies have to earn 15 points and Sports takes 2 years and they have to earn 10 points. In addition to the 20 (or 15/10) skillpoints, my sims also have to meet a final year requirement, like an exam if you will.
Each days my sims take a different class which teaches a different skill. I’ve made timetables per year for each major. Pasting the full sheets here would be a LOT of text, so you can view (or download by right clicking and choosing save as..) the sheets in PDF format below:

Uni class overview
Uni class timetables


These pictures are just to give an impression of the places I’m talking about. I shall post more pictures of both my school and my university in time on this blog.