I have uncovered the secrets of Cypress Terrace, the large estate of the Spencer-Kim Lewis household.

  1. Why does Cypress Terrace have so many rooms?
  2. Why is it so strangely lit and oddly furnished?
  3. Why is the household so rich? Does this real estate have a secret lot trait?

Background

I have disliked Cypress Terrace for a long time now because I could not understand it fully.
I could not understand the reason why this house have more rooms than it needs.
I could not understand the strange lighting and odd furnishing of the house.
I could not understand the incredible number of windows on this house.

After genuinely playing with this household, I have found some interesting quirks of Cypress Terrace that appear to explain why it looks the way it does in the vanilla game.

1. Why does Cypress Terrace have so many rooms?

I am inclined to believe that the two elders in the Spencer-Kim Lewis household fundamentally believe in having many successful descendants.

Dennis Kim has the Successful Lineage aspiration which requires a child or a grandchild to reach the top of a career. This could take a long time. So, he may have prepared Cypress Terrace to house 3 or 4 generations under the same roof.

Vivian Lewis has the Big Happy Family aspiration which requires 4 grandchildren. Once again, it is an aspiration that takes time to complete. In addition, the 4 grandchildren will need a lot of room to grow up.

Dennis and Vivian have been preparing for their legacy.

2. Why is it so strangely lit and oddly furnished?

I still do not fully understand the strange lighting.

The third floor bedroom that appears to belong to Vivian Lewis has green lights.

However, I believe that the odd furnishing came about when Eric Lewis (I believe) shifted into house after he married Alice Spencer-Kim. Since the house is likely to have been built up over time and standing since Dennis was a child, it contains furniture that accumulated over time. The household as a whole simply did not know where to start even if they wanted to redesign the large space.

Dennis and Alice probably thought,

“Okay, we will just shift some things out of the way so that there is enough space for Eric and Vivian. But we wouldn’t make any drastic changes.”

Now, my next hypothesis will be quite wild.

I think that Alice and Eric were teenage parents even though it is not possible to do so in the game. This means that Alice might have gotten pregnant with Olivia and married Eric in a rush. This could explain why the shift was done so haphazardly and the household never had time to put away things and redesign.

Upon loading a new game, Alice is 22 days away from aging into an Adult and Olivia is 13 days away from aging into a Teen. This means that Olivia is a new Child so must have been around for at least 7 days as a toddler.

Since Alice is a 2-day old Young Adult (24 days of Young Adult-hood on normal lifespan), she must have had Olivia in her tummy while she was a teen with 5 to 8 days more to Young Adult-hood.

Since Eric is 2 days older than Alice, he must have given life to Olivia when he was a teen with 3 to 6 days more to Young Adult-hood.

I know that this is really wild because the most straight-forward explanation for the possible teenage pregnancy of Alice is that the game developers simply created the household from Create-A-Sim (CAS) rather than make Alice and Eric woohoo in the game and let the child be born through gameplay.

Anyhow, all of the above factors seem to properly explain the mess in Cypress Terrace. So, I will run with it.

3. Why is the household so rich? Does this real estate have a secret lot trait?

I have found that it is exceedingly easy to paint masterpieces of art on this lot.

Starting in a fresh Save File, Alice painted her first masterpiece when her painting skill was only Level 6 or 7 (I did not record the exact level). At the point of writing, Alice’s painting skill is just 31% in Level 8 yet she has painted 5 masterpieces – 3 medium and 2 large.

These are the values of her masterpieces in Simoleons:

Medium Classic Painting 900
Confident Painting 928
Landscape Painting 1497
Figure Painting 1284
Large Classic Painting 2239

Alice’s painting masterpieces.

Alice had achieved this with no lot traits or reward traits. She was inspired. And she did 3 out of 5 masterpieces autonomously. I only prompted her to do the Classic Paintings.

Now, this leads me to believe even more that Cypress Terrace belongs to the Kims. Only a Kim would know that the riches of this estate lies in painting. Only a Kim would insist that a Kim descendant aspires to be a Painter. Alice has made sure that Olivia is on the right track to take over Cypress Terrace when she grows up.

It also further explains the ridiculous and comical number of artwork hung on every wall. The Kims love paintings.

The ground floor bedroom that appears to belong to Dennis Kim has paintings of leaves and birds.
The second floor bedroom that appears to belong to Olivia has children paintings and posters.
The third floor landing has greyscale paintings that look as if someone was practising to paint.

The question that begs to be asked is,

“Why does Dennis Kim not have the painting skill?”

I do not know. In part, I believe that the game developers did not design for lore in The Sims 4.

In another part, I believe that Dennis’s “job” in the Kim household would have been to pass on his family name because he is a male. He may likely be a doctor, lawyer, engineer, or professor if these careers are available in the Base Game. In turn, he would have no time to paint.

The creative skill-building items placed in Cypress Terrace could be only a hobby for the wealthy Kim household. In this way, the female descendants may dabble in creative arts in their leisure.

Alice may have picked up painting this way. She has never been expected to become a doctor or a lawyer, especially not after she had Olivia as a teen.

In other words, Cypress Terrace is a treasure ground that allows anyone on the lot to paint masterpieces easily. This gives the landowners a lot of wealth over time.

Going off on a tangent, Dennis Kim and Lydia Spencer may have divorced over two main issues, (a) they could not conceive a male descendant, and (b) they quarreled over Alice’s teenage pregnancy and could not stop blaming each other for Alice’s unexpected route. It is not that they do not love each other or Alice; it is just that they do not know how to move on amicably after something unexpected happened yet.

I hope that my guesses make good fodder for storytelling and inspire you to play! Have fun!

How does the Spencer-Kim Lewis household pay the bills?

None of the household members have a job.
Olivia starts off as a Grade School C Student.

Notably, Vivian has Cooking Skills Level 4,
Dennis has Gardening Skill Level 4,
Eric has Programming Skill Level 3, and
Alice has Painting Skill Level 4.

Alice has started on five skills; the most amongst them.

Olivia has started on her Social and Motor skills.

My initial thoughts are as follows:
the house belongs to Dennis Kim because he is the one who gardens,
so I presume that he owns the land.
He could be a Korean migrant to the U.S.A. and he is an elder,
so that may explain the 55 000 Simoleons in reserves.

On another hand, Cypress Terrace could be passed down from the Lewis family
because Eric wants to be a Mansion Baron.
He may already know that he will inherit the estate.

Then again, he could have married Alice with knowledge that he would inherit this estate.


Vivian and Dennis are around the same age – 85 days (they are a few hours apart).
Alice is 2 days younger than Eric; Eric has 20 days to age up while Alice has 22 days.
Olivia has 13 days to age up.

Olivia is a goofball. So, it is interesting that her aspiration is
to be creative!
I think that Olivia takes after her mother because
in a typical Asian household, the child’s aspiration is often to fulfil
the parent’s aspiration.

This marriage could be in part for convenience because
both Vivian and Dennis aspire to have some form of legacy.

Day 1

I started investigating the matter on the Sunday of Spring.
Their first bill was set at 9121 Simoleons.

I set Dennis to buy 1 seed packet of each – flowers, fruits, herbs, and vegetables.
He planted them in the rain.

Dennis Kim planted a seed.

Eric got a job as a Freelance Programmer.
He completed his first job for 585 Simoleons.

Eric Lewis worked on his first gig as a Freelance Programmer.

Alice finished the first level of her Painter Extraordinaire aspiration.
She finished 3 paintings and earned about 500 Simoleons.

Alice Spencer-Kim painted her first painting.

That makes the household income about 1000 Simoleons a day; still not quite enough.

Vivian helped Olivia with her homework and cooked.

Vivian Lewis cooked her first Garden Salad for the household.

Olivia finished her homework, drew, and played with toys.
Alice even managed to spray the monster under the bed for Olivia.
Then, she went to sleep at 12 a.m.

Olivia worked towards completing her Artistic Prodigy aspiration.

Day 2
Vivian woke up at slightly past 4 a.m. to relief her bladder.
She had a drink and cooked together with Dennis.
In so doing, Dennis acquired Cooking Skill Level 1.

Vivian cooked breakfast together with Dennis.

It seems to be a beautiful day.

Vivian foraged around the estate.
Dennis planted two new plants, strawberry and snapdragon.
He also researched all the plants in season.

Meanwhile, Eric completed his second project and made over 600 Simoleons.
Alice was working on her emotional paintings.

Olivia returned from school with a project.
Eric assisted Olivia with project as he was the only one with time.
Vivian and Eric had turned in for the day; it was about 7 p.m.

Eric assisted Olivia in her school project.

Eric and Alice woohoo-ed tonight.

Day 3
Vivian could not get Dennis to cook with her.
He just went straight for the leftovers.
She went ahead to cook.
Dennis then tended his garden.
Both Vivian and Dennis managed to squeeze in a jog.
And they played chess together.

Alice became a 1-star celebrity.
She is working hard on her aspiration.

Eric takes on his 3rd project – a shady one.
He had to make 2 viruses.

Olivia did not have time to eat breakfast.
She took a packed lunch.
She made a friend and got promoted too.

Alice could not get an excellent painting today.
She did her best.
She helped Olivia with her homework and extra credit too!

Day 4
Alice did not have much progress with excellent paintings.
She completed only two excellent paintings.
Eric didn’t have a chance to get the Level 4 job.
He did a only a Level 2 gig and did not make much today.

Vivian found time to read to Olivia.

Day 5
There was big progresses for all.
Eric finished a Level 4 gig.
Alice finished two masterpieces.
Dennis completed the first tier of his Freelance Botainist aspiration.
Vivian collected many collectibles.
Olivia was promoted to an A student.

Alice painted her first masterpiece.

Olivia did not sleep well today due to the
monster under the bed.

Day 6
It is Love Day.
Vivian and Dennis expressed their love for each other as BFFs.

Vivian and Dennis are BFFs.

Olivia came home so tired that she went straight to bed.

Eric’s gig paid 3749 Simoleons today at Level 5.

Day 7
Vivian adopted a child named Russel.
She changed his name to Orlando. He is now Orlando Lewis.
This was her last attempt to fulfil her Big Happy Family aspiration.
But it is unlikely to come true with her numbered days.

They went to the Snow Festival together.
Orlando went sledding with Olivia.
They got along fine. But nothing more.

Orlando sledded with Olivia.

Day 8
Eric has maxed out the first level of the Freelance Programmer career.
He gained the ability to overclock a PC.

Alice needs two more excellent painting to reach the last stage
of her aspiration.

The household funds have grown to a healthy 67341 Simoleons.
But Vivian and Dennis got the notice that they have reached the end
of their lives.
Make the most of it.

The bills are at 9943 Simoleons now.

Alice and Eric were happy with the state of their family and finances.

Day 9 Monday
The actual first bill was 10 008 Simoleons.
The household had 56 205 Simoleons left after paying the bills.
That is about 1000 Simoleons more than they had at the beginning.
There is not much gain. But at least they didn’t dip into the reserves.

My findings are as follows:
The Spencer-Kim Lewis household is able to maintain life in Cypress Terrace by working together as one. Eric earns an excellent income completing gigs as a Freelance Programmer as he is diligent enough to work 6 days a week. Alice does what she loves most and she is truly privileged to get paid for her passion – painting. Vivian nails the homemaking aspect of the household – cooking and teaching her granddaughter, Olivia. Dennis gardens to provide fresh ingredients for everybody’s good health and also to provide a means of quick cash in case of emergency. Olivia does her part as a student; she studies hard and works on her aspiration. Orlando, the adopted child of Vivian and brother to Eric, brings joy to Vivian in her elder years and companionship to Olivia as they grow up together.

The household has no time to socialise beyond themselves. They are not snobbish. Just the opposite, they are humble, cooperative like cogs in a machine, following the clockwork in order to sustain the level of comfort that they know. To some, this sounds bland. But to the Spencer-Kim Lewis household, this is the only way they know how to live.

Edgar’s Growth

Edgar stopped painting halfway to enjoy a meal. He takes in the fragrance of the food in the chilly midnight while his only child, Eleanor, slept. He knew that he had to make full use of such alone time to fulfil his own needs and earn those Simoleons because he must spend the other waking hours taking care of Eleanor’s needs.

Image above: Edgar sat down to a meal on a winter midnight.

Edgar got stronger each day as he built his wellness and painting skills. He made use of different yoga routines to get into extended periods of inspiration for painting and focus for woodworking. And he soon gained the ability to teleport with his wellness skill.

Image above: Edgar elevated during his yoga routine.
Image above: Edgar teleported to the roof of his tiny home at dawn.
Image above: Edgar painting a medium piece of art.

Edgar felt more and more confident that he can support Malia when they get married. He wants to marry her because he had made her pregnant and gave birth to a baby boy.

On the other evening, he visited this baby with Eleanor and Endo. He did not have the heart to allow his flesh and blood to live without a father when he saw how Malia lived as a single mother with her teenage son, Benson.

He had found that Malia lived a decent and meaningful life with a good job. But he would not have that for his son.

He had not thought of marrying anyone after Eleanor’s mother walked out long ago, and he had dedicated all of his energy into perfecting his life – Eleanor’s life.

At that moment, he wanted to take responsibility to support Malia and bring up his son – his and Malia’s firstborn.

Edgar struggled with his emotions because he loved Eleanor’s mother. He was not the best partner in the past; he was a bum in the eyes of Eleanor’s mother.

He knew that the answer to his life at this point is straightforward because he would not make the same mistake. He would marry Malia, bring their son over, and ensure that all of them live perfect.

He firmly believed that the least he could do was to give his best. He was a perfectionist.

Eleanor’s Childhood

Eleanor worked hard to complete all her childhood aspirations when she saw how hard her father fought every day to bring her well. She knew that she would gain skills faster in teenage if she made herself physically gifted, mentally gifted, socially gifted, and creatively gifted.

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Image above: Eleanor (right) socializing with another child (left) atop a monkey bar. 

Eleanor did her best to accommodate her father’s new romance, Malia Stubbs, who shifted into Creek Cabana. She went out together with Malia, just like a family.

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Image above: Eleanor (left), Malia (centre left), Edgar (centre right), and Endo (right), hanging out in front of Malia’s residence at Creek Cabana, Willow Creek.

Eleanor had her doubts because Malia is a divorcee with a son in his teens. However, Eleanor remained ever so supportive of her father. She knew that her father deserved a social life beyond Endo the cat and herself.

That night, Eleanor peered into the distance from the roof of her little wooden house, realising that the trajectory of the canal almost reflects her current life – turning ahead into the unknown.

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Image above: A view of the canal besides Eleanor’s house in Willow Creek.

Even in the darkness of midnight, Eleanor strove to complete her school project with the assistance of her father, Edgar.

She is thankful for a beautiful and spacious roof deck and a dedicated father.

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Image above: Eleanor (right) focusing on her school project with Edgar (left).

Eleanor would go all out to be that Super Child. She spent all her time levelling up her skills. This time, she worked on her imagination by playing with the Purple Action Figure, a basic toy that made a whole world come alive for so many Sims.

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Image above: Eleanor working on her Imagination in the living and dining room.

In this instance, Eleanor realised her independence. She understood Edgar’s hopes for her to be perfect.

Edgar, Eleanor, and Endo

Edgar watched his wife walking out of the house as Eleanor cried, and Endo jumped onto the countertop, mewing. He knew that he has to care for three-year old Eleanor and the family cat on his own after the separation.

To be fair, Edgar and his wife were not married. They stayed together for Eleanor but they hardly saw eye-to-eye. He thought that she spent to much time at work while she thought that he was a bum.

Edgar had to set things right. He counted his responsibilities – Eleanor and Endo. And he counted his belonging – the three-storey tiny house made of wood slats that cost them a 110 000 Simoleons and no job. He was desperate to find a means of living. And he decided to start with woodworking and move on to baking cupcakes if he were to survive. He needed to survive.

Edgar was grateful for the positive traits that Eleanor and Endo had acquired while his wife was around. Eleanor was a charmer and she acquired communication skills quickly. She could talk to the cat at length. And she also learnt to dance and move around fast with the two loudspeakers installed in the house. Endo was a prowler, cleaver, and adventurous. He did not need much from Edgar.

Edgar put Eleanor to bed, refilled the bowl of pet treats and called Endo to eat, and started work at the woodworking table. And the story begins.

Image above: Edgar used the computer on a whim; he probably chatted online or trolled the Teh Forums. Eleanor chomped away at her food and she was dressed like a boy. Endo curled his tail around his chubby body and watched Edgar.