Sunday, April 29, 2007


It's been an ... exciting ... week as I argued and fought with my computer. I had bought another harddrive and managed to reinstall windows but that was it. I didn't have the right drivers for the hardware I had in my computer and I didn't know what WAS in it. Thankfully, I managed to find the order confirmation from when I bought it and managed to figure out the make/model of the graphics card and the network card. Then, a little more digging led me to the sound card and the driver for the touch pad. Set up on this thing is almost back to normal but I've got the drivers on an external drive if I need them and I requested the recovery disc from Dell. For future reference, first thing to do when you buy a new computer is to burn the recovery disc.

In other news...

I've done some beading


And I've decided to stop work on Gothic Spire. I made the smallest size and see how wide I can make that cuff? See how I can't get it over the heel? Also, the wrap stitches were driving me nuts!


So while I looked for a next project, I knitted another few rows on the half hex Spider Shawl from VLT. I really want to make the Myrtle Leaf Shawl but I'm only allowing myself one project from VLT on the needles at once.


I also got my next shipment from the STR club and promptly wound up the yarn. I like this pattern and like the option for knee highs :-)


I did start casting on for a summer top using Classic Elite Provence (100% cotton). I finished the front last night and have cast on for the back. I'm taking a little break because my left hand is a little tired and I don't want to strain it.


Monday, April 23, 2007

Computer problems

I usually try not to blog from work, but since this is the only place where I have a usable computer...

I think I managed to wipe out my harddrive last I was using my computer. One of the guys I work with is trying to help me extract the data out of it now. If the words "unmountable boot drive" means anything to you, yeah, I got that message on a blue screen. It was a "happy" moment when I realized what that message meant. Last backup of the harddrive...probably a year ago. So, blog posts will be few until I have that working again or get a new harddrive while I wait to see if I can find someone who can extract the data off of this one. I still have a flicker of hope I can still get to the contents. It's just a flicker, a very dim flicker. This flicker stems from the fact that I can get to the blue screen and I have the option to boot to safe mode or command prompt. Unfortunately, the computer does die before it is actually able to boot. To sum it up, the harddrive is in something like a persistent vegetative state.

This happened when I was trying to post and even include some pictures! So, I was very upset this morning. It's like loosing your best friend. Yes, I can vacation without a computer, but when I'm at home, it needs to be on and always accessible!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Make up

I was watching "What Not To Wear" tonight and watched this girl get a makeover lesson. What was scary was that her face looked fresh before the makeup went on. But after they added added the foundation, you could see the powder on her face, and that 'layer'. Then, after the eye shadow went could see the lines on her face. Which made me think back to peoples' faces that I've noticed. The ones that I notice lines on do tend to wear makeup. The ones I don't tend to notice lines...not so much make up. I guess if you think about it, we all have our natural lines on the face. But the makeup as a layer that can crack and isn't smooth, would really only emphasis the lines. Eh?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

From the weekend

First up, I was successful in my first steps towards turducken. The short explanation (for those who don't want to go to wikipedia) is that it's a chicken in a duck in a turkey, with layers of stuffing in between. I had wanted to make this a couple of years ago but didn't get far. Everytime my friend Josh sees me, he asks me about turducken. So, after St. Louis, I was reinspired and more so after I read this site about preparation. Finally! A site that shows me what the chicken is supposed to look like after I've pulled all the bones out. My plan was to first debone a chicken and stuff it. My next attempt would be to debone a duck and a chicken and make the "ducken". Finally, I'd go for the all out "turducken". The set is found here. Here's my dinner from Sunday:

In other bizarro weekend happenings, I saw that one of my African violets had some flowers

And even MORE bizarre, I saw that the sacrificial orchid grew more buds and a couple of them are starting to open! I know it grew more buds because Anne's orchid was a near exact replica of the orchid at the state when I bought it and there were only 3 or 4 buds per stem at the time. Who needs a refresher on this? Now, there are more buds?

Last night, I was doing the crochet border on Charlotte's Web when I ran out of yarn. Ya. That sucks. I went to Knit Happens in the hopes of finding the same color of yarn. I wasn't too concerned with the dye lot since Koigu is handpainted. Well, I got there, saw my yarn, and said, "Oh, yeah, this is the shade. I've been staring at it enough the last few days to know it!" I cam home, checked the tags and even more amazing is that it's even the same dye lot! Note that I had bought the Koigu a year or two ago. This was the first lace I had ever attempted!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Things upcoming

Thought I'd do a little post on upcoming classes at Studio Baboo with Donna DeAngelis Dickt. In July, over the weekend of Bastille Day will be Christmas in July. Saturday, she's teaching her Poinsettia pattern. Sunday is the debut of the Amaryllis pattern. I've also received notification about the 2007 Flower Seminar. Theme this year is going to be lilies - mini calla lily, sword lily (gladiolus) and Peruvian Lily (Alstromeria). Those interested can choose from either the first weekend of November or the second weekend of November. General registration opens on May 1 for this year's seminar.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Charlotte's Web update

I'm binding off tonight. Knitting this thing has been my reward for working on the basement.

Offering #2

This one:

Shades of green. The stone is Australian Jade in a simple beaded bezel. It sits on the tubuler ndebele (herringbone) strap on a decorated peyote stitch bail. That bail has little fringy things made of more seed beads, leaf beads, flower beads, and some 3mm Swarovski bicones. I had added the leaves and flowers because the regular peyote stitch looked too boring and the necklace was beginning to be too green. The clasp is a toggle clasp, also stitched with seed beads. This necklace comes in at 19.5 inches in length. Note that since there is a bail, you can actually take the cabochon off of the beaded necklace.

This will be listing on etsy Tuesday night for $107.


Friday, April 13, 2007

Cute things, pretty things

First up, trunk show at Bead Obsessions. I got some beads that I'm going to make into some stitch markers:


Ya, they're little froggies! Aren't they cute? There were also some humming birds and some things I couldn't identify. But since I'm trying to be financially responsible...I just got some frogs.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Finally catching up

Yeah, recovery has taken a while. Two years ago, I came back from the Frozen Four, ran a 10K the week after and then the next week, passed out on my bed for a couple of weeks. The doctors couldn't figure out what was wrong. My guess was that it was some combination of a cold, exhaustion, and an allergic reaction to some antibiotics. So, with this post, I should be caught up with everything.

To start, I got a new bag!

IMG_1156 IMG_1157

Here is both an inside and an outside shot. I bought this bag on etsy from Midnight Creations. She was very friendly and very quick. I had seen a bag with fabric that I really liked but it was in the medium size which seemed to be a little smaller than I had wanted. So I was able to email her and custom order a bag and here it is! I like it a lot. I could also specify if I wanted a snap, button, or ribbon closure. I chose the ribbon.

And in case anyone was wondering about how the beading was going...

I made a toggle out of seed beads for the clasp. I've had the necklace mostly done for a while but tonight, I sat down and added the leaves and the flowers onto the bail. It looked really empty and plain without the flowers and leaves. There's also some little fringy things and decorative Swarovski crystals.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A progress shot

Charlotte's Web progress. I'm onto the section where you alternate colors D and E. After this, I have a solid section of color E and then bind off.


Finishing off the St. Louis posts

The full set of pictures can be found here. I did throw in some comments and notes.

I did forget to mention that Wednesday night, as I was on the plane, I noticed that some how, I got a hole in Charlotte's Web. I don't know how I dropped the stitches since I still had all that I needed on the needles, but there was a hole a few rows down...


Well, I'm not afraid of a few dropped stitches so I took my trusty hair stick and used that as another needle


The fix was nearly perfect since the stitches still look the same, but if you look closely, you can see that one piece of yarn is in the wrong place. But since it wasn't clearly noticeable, and since I'd have to drop more stitches than I would've liked, I didn't go back to fix it.

Monday, April 09, 2007

St. Louis, now where was I?

I left off at the Anheuser Busch brewery. It was about 2 miles from our hotel and Rich wanted to walk back through the Soullard neighborhood since it looked interesting. Well, we did. The houses were cute. They were brick with different trims that were colorful and added character to the buildings. It reminded me of both Annapolis, MD and some of the area between Old City and the Italian Market in Philly. Of course, if this place had been on the east coast, the buildings would've been smaller and smushed closer together. We still saw a couple of people out and about. We did walk past Fat Toney's BBQ which looked like dinner since both Rich and Beeeej had wanted BBQ at some point. So, we kept walking past the restaurant and the very deserted farmer's market. We walked over the interestate that runs into downtown and by the river. Even though it was rush hour, there was no traffic. Back to the hotel and I am absolutely freezing. I didn't pack well for the weather. I also didn't think my blood was circulating. We cabbed it back to Fat Toney's to meet up with Beeeej for dinner which was really quite good. Then wandered back towards Union Station to see if there was anything going on there. The answer was no. We found a sports bar near by and the guys got some wings and some beer. I had my soda and the grease was starting to get to me. I was also getting really restless and wanted to go dancing so eventually, Beeeej wandered home and Rich, Josh, and I wandered down to Laclede's Landing, my last hope for people. Wandering down the street, we were pointed to a bar that had dancing and $10 to drink until closing at 3am. That sounded good to me since I had wanted to do both of those things and the guys were game. Adam was also trying to get us down to the landing and when we got there, I let him know where we were. He was all set to go until he found out that the INCH staff party was being held where we were and there are a few people there who hate him. So he refused to come over. But a little bit of convincing got him over. While sitting on the main floor, Rich was dancing with some woman who was getting married in 6 days. We also witnessed a bar brawl between some BU fans and some BC fans. Eventually, we all wandered downstairs to the dance area. That also put more floors between Adam and the INCH guys. And I dragged those guys down to the dance floor. None of them dance but they were humoring the drunk girl for the evening. There was also one of those novelty poles and soon after we got down there, they were having a pole dancing contest. The first girl got up and she was okay. Nothing fancy. The second girl got up there and did a little more. The third one got up there and she must have done it before. She wasn't wearing much and was flashing the crowd and was very comfortable on the pole. Josh also thought that she was a he, until she flashed and showed everyone her parts. There was a fourth girl who was not a professional. At some point, I realized that while everyone was staring at the girls, I could take advantage of all of this and go to the bar for another drink. Soon, after, I dragged the guys up one floor, taking pity on their misery on the dance floor. I didn't feel too bad since they did get to see half naked girls dance suggestively, as in a strip club. We eventually left to get some food and they dragged me back to the room where I stuck my head under the shower to wash some of the smoke out of my hair and fell asleep.


Final started at 6pm. What was up with that? Sure it's 7pm EST but I didn't remember the final having started that early in previous years. I dragged myself out of bed at 1pm. Rich had gotten up to go to the open skate, and Josh had gotten up so he could take care of some business and wander around. These next couple of hours were probably the only ones that we did not spend in each others' presence. I got myself up, showered and dressed. Then I wandered to the Starbucks in the hotel lobby, and with my knitting, walked up to Union Station. I got there around when open skate was ending (3pm) so I was able to meet up with Rich to scout out dinner. My only request for dinner was that we eat something not too greasy. The dangerous/bad thing about these weekends for me is the combination of the type of food being consumed and the alcohol and the lack of sleep. Saturday, I wanted healthy. My body was rejecting greasy foods. We made a reservation at an Italian restaurant and he wandered off while I wandered back into Union Station (a mall), and stopped to knit some of Charloote's Web and watch all the hockey people go by, as well as enjoying a new found sense of peace.

Dinner was tasty. We sampled a St. Louis dish of toasted raviolis as an appetizer. That was really good. Also had some stuff calamari, also quite tasty. I had some seafood linguine. the meal took while so the anthems had played already by the time we got there. We did make it in time for the puck drop so that was good. Everyone thought BC was going to win. They scored first and kept it up. I got a bit sleepy at the start of the third. But then MSU scored halfway through the 3rd and we had a game. I was hoping for OT but it wasn't necessary since MSU scored with less than a minute left of the game! Holy crap! The entire arena, minus the BC fans, went NUTS! I gotta tell you that I missed the empty net goal with 1.2 seconds left of the game. I thought the horn was the game horn, and apparently, so did the MSU players.
Post game, the season's over. Beeeej wandered back to his hotel. Josh went off with some people he knew to make his rounds. Rich and I went back to the hotel to drop off our stuff. We decided to go back to the landing area to another place called The Big Bang. Adam was there the night before, before he met up with us and was telling us about it. This was when Josh remembered that it was where he got really trashed the last time he was in St. Louis. But before heading down there, Rich and I wandered down to a bar by the stadium. He wanted to see if this girl he met Wed night was there. Surprise, surpise! Saturday night at 10pm, the place was closed. Did I not tell you this place was weird? So we hop back onto the metro and wander to the big bang to see what the fuss was about. The place was packed and the show was amazing. There were 4 or 5 guys who took turns at the two pianos, and periodcally the drums and bass. They took requests all night, had people up on the stage for birthdays. It was the most amazing show and I was in awe of the talent. We watched dueling requests from North Dakota fans and Minnesota fans. They managed to get them to play "In heaven there is no beer" which apparently there are many verses of, but we really only know the first one. I learned this in Columbus 2 years ago, along with the fact that the Minnesota people will also drag you up and dancing while singing this. Eventually, some of the Maine fans got into it and in the end Cornell was dragged in. I was the sober one tonight since my stomach felt like this painful empty hole so I spent the last night with stinky smokey hair curled up on the bed hoping sleeping will allow me to not feel the pain in my hungry hungry stomach.


Rich had an early morning flight so he was the first to leave. Josh had a noon flight but it was pushed back til 2 so we left the hotel together. My flight left at 3. We ended up waiting for the metro for 40 minutes. We checked in and got some food. Josh's flight was now delayed til 3 so we were leaving at the same time. We parted ways at that point cuz we were in different terminals and I just wanted to find some water to keep the dehydration headaches away and remain curled up by the gate until I could get on the plane. I had an otherwise uneventful flight back where I slept and knitted some more.

And now I'm home, and settling into the college hockey off season. At least we have the Stanley Cup playoffs...which I don't really get excited for until it's the final series, at which point, I may schedule my life around the games. Yes, I am a crazy hockey nut. And yes I still owe you people pictures.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

St. Louis. Long post. No pictures

Cuz if there were to be pictures, I'd have to upload them to flickr and then write descriptions for everything and frankly, I want to go to sleep right now. Here's a map of downtown St. Louis for reference. So, my trip as follows:


I arrive at National an hour before my plane departs. No problem. Not so easy for my friend Josh whose flight out of Newark got cancelled. He also had the tickets to the Cardianls/Mets game that he and Rich were going to go see. Rich was the third member of the party. So they got there, and I had them leave me a key at the desk. We stayed at the Hilton by the Ballpark. We were on the 24th (of 25th) floor and had a view of the ballpark. Anyways, I took the subway (MetroLink...or Metro, how simple for someone from DC) to the ballpark and got out and saw everyone leaving. Thought it a bit odd the game was already letting out since from everyone I had talked to, they said a baseball game should last at least 2.5 hours. I got up to the room and saw that the game was still going. People just left early. So I took a nap before I had to meet up with the guys. They called me after the game was over and I went to go meet them at a bar. Then, we were back at the hotel and decided to meet up with some other folks Josh knows. We walked from Hilton at the Ballpark to the Sheraton by the ScottTrade Center. And we saw nothing. No people. No lit buildings. No fast food. Nothing. We were hungry and couldn't find food at 11pm in what is supposed to be a city. So then we wandered northwards to Washington Ave where a woman at the airport told me had some bars. During the walk, someone screamed out of a cab at us. It was Beeeej who had our 4th ticket. He was just getting into town and was staying at a Hampton Inn. We barely found bars and they weren't really serving food. Here we met up with Adam of College Hockey News. One of the worst kept secrets in college hockey land is that Adam, as a member of the media, is one of us...a fanatical Cornell hockey fan. He also did not see anyone while wandering the streets. We got a bite to eat and wandered back to the hotel.


I got up and went to the gym. Yay me! We then met up with Beeeej and got some food at a grill. But first we found a liquor store so that we could get some rum to sneak into the game. The rum was divided out into 2 bottles and they did confiscate one. They didn't take the other only because they didn't see it. Game one was Michigan State vs. Maine. We were cheering for Michigan State who seemed to be the lesser of the two evils. The game was over and we had a hour and a half to kill so we decided to wander back to the liquor store for more rum. Well, the next one we found, a Maine fan put it best as "Is this a vending machine?" We were in a check cashing shop that also sold liquor. The liquor was on shelves behind glass so you could look to see what they had. Then you had to ask the woman for it. Pay her through the bullet proof glass. Then, she passed you the bottle through the pass through under the counter where the outer door had to be shut completely before the door to the inner section could be opened. Note, the first liquor store we were at was the front of a restaurant, and we weren't sure if we could walk up and pick up a bottle or not. So, after getting more rum, we had dinner at a pizza place next door that also sold liquor by the bottle. Ya, this place is getting weird. Back to the rink for North Dakota vs. Boston College. This is the game that most of the college hockey world tends to view as having to pick between the lesser of the two evils. I was hoping for the roof to collapse or for the fires of hell to swallow up both teams. North Dakota (NoDak) is in the middle of the NCAA offensive name/logo controversy. They are the "Fighting Sioux" and along with the state have taken the NCAA to court. Note that the Sioux tribes actually are offended by the use. BC...well, their fans are obnoxious and their team is a bunch of goons. Some of whom I still have negative visceral reactions to when I see their names...this would be dating back to about the 2003 season when we played them to 2 OTs in the regional finals to advance to the Frozen Four. So there. We tried to cheer for BC, if only because eastern teams must stick together. But they had a girl in the pep band who annoyed all the neutral fans. During a BC penalty kill, when the puck was in the BC zone, they'd all start screaming for continuous noise. This one girl screams in a high pitched voice and it was so annoying that we all started to cheer for NoDak to score just so she would shut up. Not just us but the neutral fans around us as well. BC wins, good bye western evil. We (Josh, Rich, Beeeej, and I) are all very "hydrated", but Josh more so than the rest of us cuz he got another Pepsi to add some "water" to. Off to a blues bar with an amazing woman singing. I had some real water and slowed it down a bit since my stomach was starting to get a bit queasy. Enjoyed the music. that woman could sing. Josh left earlier and sent Rich a txt message saying that he peed on Busch Stadium. We were not supposed to let him pee on national monuments (which he did the last time he was in St. Louis) but Busch Statdium is not a national monument, and were in the bar. Rich and I made it back to the hotel room about an hour later and only found out the next day that Josh had thrown up in the bathroom when he got back.


We got up and went to the Arch. If you're in St. Louis, of course you have to do the tourist thing and to the top of the Arch. The ride up is interesting. The space at the top is small. And I'm afraid of heights. It was interesting and I ended up sitting in a corner, completely disoriented. It was nice to be back on solid ground. I did take some good pictures. After that it was time to tour Anheuser Busch. Last year, Rich toured the Miller brewery in Milwaukee, WI during the off day. Apparently, last year, this year and next year comnposes the trifecta of American brewery tours. Next year is Denver where there is Coors. We speculated that this may have been an odd sense of humor on the site selection committee. College hockey fans like beer. They were out of tickets by the time we got there but we were able to go standby on a tour. We got to see the Clydesdale horses and walked through some parts of the factory. The factory reminds me of Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. The smell outside was horrible. It was unappetizing. They did show us a room where they aged the beer. That room smelled amazing. I wanted beer. I wanted to drink beer while I was in that room. The tour ended in the hospitality room where we could each sample 2 beers on tap. Well, actually, the first thing we were told was that the bus for the NoDak fans who were with the tour group was leaving in 5 minutes so they needed to hurry up. The rest of us looked around, saw how many empty tables there would be, and cheered on the inside. We got our first samples and I was reminded that while the vats of aging beer smelled really good, I don't like beer. We all got something different and each tried everything but the guys ended up drinking my beers. They've had me try beer in the past that I could tolerate, but not the large commercialized stuff.

I'll pick up here tomorrow cuz I really want to go to sleep now. I did get some knitting done here and there.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Alive! In St. Louis

Just a quick note to say I'm alive. Games have been good. There are strangely no people in this city other than the ones here for hockey. I'll post some pictures up when I get back. My friends and I were taking turns on being the person who has had too much to drink so it was my night last night so I'm still a little hazy.

Random other blurb. I had ordered from the Knit Happens online sale and it finally shipped. checking out the UPS tracking, the package went from Alexandria, VA to Baltimore, MD. And then it will make its way back down to Springfield, VA. Now...wouldn't it have just been faster for me to have gone to pick it up in person?

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Off to St. Louis (or, I hate tourists)

Well, the subject line, not really related to each other. I left work today and met up with Amber to go knitting with the cherry blossoms. That was when I remembered how much as a local, I hate the Cherry Blossom Fesitval cuz of all the damn tourists! They don't know where they're going, they walk slow and block the way, and there are so many of them! When I lived in DC, my route home was 50 to GW parkway, to Memorial Bridge and from Independence Ave into Southwest. Well, it was always crowded to go home and I would look for ways to not go home. So yah, it took about 40 minutes in the car before I could get out of the city. Urg!

Tomorrow, I am going to work and then I'm leaving for St. Louis for the Frozen Four. I don't know who I'll cheer for so I might cheer for fights, OTs, and the roof falling in. I'll have with me the top down raglan and Charlotte's Web, and maybe a sock. We'll see. I'll remember to take some pictures. I'm going to throw out a question and hopefully, someone can send me an answer before I get to it. The Charlotte's Web shawl doesn't say to bind off. It says to crochet around the edge but I don't see the words "bind off" anywhere. It just goes from lace pattern to "Crochet Edge and Fringe" which goes into "With 3.5 mm crochet hook single crochet around the edge row." So does that mean I've already bound off the edge row? I should go pack now.