Hello everyone. It's February, so spring is right around the corner...or is here according to some. To be honest, I'm just glad it's getting a little brighter!

Firstly, I'd like to congratulate some community members here for their recent achievements. Das Kitty, the moderator of the Creative Writing forum, who won a competition last year and had her story published on Short Fiction. They also commissioned some amazing artwork for it. You can read it right here, along with some details of her success in competitions over the last couple of years.

And if you need an example of how to get a forum request to build up a head of steam and prove that a standalone forum is required, you should look no further than the Fighting Games forum. This started with a thread in the General Gaming forum, but clearly needed its own forum. Doctor Doom, the moderator of that forum, got involved in event organisation and put together Celtic Throwdown - a major event, backed by Capcom - which claimed TheArcade.ie's Event of the Year award.

Perhaps we should get them to do an AMA. Hey, what a segue! You may have spotted some ads for the AMA forum around the site. If you would be interested in taking part in an AMA, please get in touch.

This year, we've had community member Bounty Hunter sharing insights about life in Taiwan. More recently, a group of Medieval Recreators took to the forum to detail what it's all about, what's involved in a re-enactment, how they got involved, and more.

On a more formal note, it's time to chat rules. The topic of "hidden rules" was brought up recently. As it turns out, while there was a rule about the publishing of private messages, there actually wasn't anything in Boards.ie's Guidelines or Terms of Use about it. This was an oversight, so to ensure that newbies and veterans alike are on the same page, it's been added to the Guidelines that you need permission from the other party if you want to publish the contents of a Private Message. As before, the Dispute Resolution Forum is an outlier to this and it can be done here to support your case.

Meanwhile, many forums in the Science category are considering allowing threads about homework, surveys, projects, and so on. If you do want to post such a thread, please check out the forum's charter before hitting the Submit button.

And now back to more fun stuff. There are some community members who share interesting or valuable resources on a daily basis. We've already highlighted the efforts of AccessAw who posts about free Udemy courses in Bargain Alerts. There's an ongoing Competitions thread within Puzzles & Quizzes with new posts on a daily basis. And it turns out that we've a recent winner in our midst. Congrats to cork-spotters who won a night away in Waterford.

The Boards Golf Society will be hosting its first official outing of the year at Luttrelstown Castle on February 25th. You can find out more about this event and how to get involved in the dedicated thread here.

If you've ever considered getting involved in the sport of Powerlifting, a user over on the Fitness forum is currently organising an Intro to Powerlifting Workshop. You can give your input right here (http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showt...?t=2057701980).

Finally, we've a brand new Sponsored Forum up and running. Microfinance Ireland has a forum of its own, and if you're curious what they do they've helpfully put together a "What Do We Do?" thread.

We'll leave it at that, but check out some of the below threads that have been entertaining us over the last little while.