October 28, 2005

Murder & Housewarming

Here's the info for all of you coming to our Murder & Housewarming Party. Blogger is being pissy so I have no photos to post....The theme is 1920's speakeasy - think gangsters, flappers, and the like. I can't wait!

Murder at the Four Deuces

Don Wannabe and his wife Madame MeMe are hosting a grand opening celebration for his new lavish speakeasy The Four Deuces. The cream and not so cream of society will be here. With gangsters, hit men, politicians, opera singers, molls, reporters, and many other interesting guests in attendance there are sure to be a lot of big deals being made here tonight.

Guest List

Matt S. - Don Wannabe - 36 - Big Jim Raviolis Chief Lieutenant. When he met his wife Madam MeMe, it was love at first sight. The 2 of them own a chain of houses of ill repute. He was hired by Big Jim to run his many businesses, as Big Jim wanted only to pursue wine, women and song.

Jeanne S. - Madam MeMe - 37 - Married to Don Wannabe for over 15 years. With their combined head for business the two have managed to amass a fortune. Tonight they open their newest venture the Four Deuces.

Mike S. - Capo 'Toto' Tequila - 48 - The self proclaimed Boss of Bosses will be visiting us from New York. Speculation is running rampant on why he is coming here tonight. When it involves the Capo it just has to be something big.

Osam M. - Don 'Big Jim' Ravioli - 40 - Well-known father of the Chicago mob or "The Family". Often referred to as Diamond Jim because of his penchant for flashy diamond jewelry. He just recently divorced his wife of 20 years to marry the much younger Carrie Crooner an aspiring Opera Singer. They have only been married for a week.

Katie C. - Carrie Crooner-Ravioli - 19 - Carrie had been a singer in one of Big Jim's clubs when Big Jim fell in love with her. He divorced his wife to marry her. She is attending tonight to do a special performance. People speculate that she only married Big Jim so that she could use his connections to become famous.

Lori Beth W. - Vicky Ravioli - 48 - Ex-wife to Don Ravioli. While she is older then him, she was still surprised when he asked for a divorce to marry that floozy Carrie Crooner. The divorce came through on March 20th and Vicky was overheard saying, "I raised my husband from a boy to a man for another woman." She received a $50,000 settlement from the divorce. It is rumored that her grief didn't last very long and that she has a new lover.

Jessica W. - Rebecca Ravioli - 20 - Daughter to Big Jim and Vicky. She has been telling everyone that she is engaged to marry Rhett Bumbler. Her father absolutely refuses to allow the marriage.

Andy B. - Rhett Bumbler - 32 - A gambler who came into town about 6 months ago. No one knows much about him, except that he is not very good at cards or dice. His attempts to cheat are so laughable that most people tend to overlook it. People don't believe he is engaged to Rebecca. Big Jim would never tolerate this buffoon as a son-in-law.

Laura G. - Baroness Ravioli - 56 - Mother to Don Big Jim Ravioli. Of course she isn't a real Baroness, but being the Don's mother does tend to keep people from saying any different. The Baroness loves to wear tiaras and lord it over anyone she considers 'beneath' her. She has been acting very smug lately, even more than usual.

Megan S. - Donna Wannabe - 24 - Don Wannabes little sister. Donna has become quite popular with the movie picture actors. She has been somewhat secretly seeing Big Jim on and off for the last few years. Lately she has been seen making a play for Rhett Bumblers attention. Some speculate that she has always been jealous of the attention Big Jim lathered on his daughter and this is her way of getting back at her.

Joel S. - Tony Capone - 22 - Brought from New York by Don Wannabe to become his bouncer for the new club. While he is called a bouncer, everyone knows that he was really just a hit man for The Family.

Brian B. - U.S. Congressman Darrin Toosteal - 55 - Some say Darrins rise to fame could be directly attributed to his close friendship with Big Jim. It is also rumored that he could very possibly become the next President of the United States. Some privately wonder how he could hope to become the next president when it was well known that he has such a close affiliation with a man of Big Jims reputation.

Dave T. - Inspector Neville 'The Nose' Nutella - The Inspector will be attending the function to investigate the murder of the Black Hand Gang 2 nights ago.

Dan F. - Sly Sleaze - 32 - Sly runs the horse-betting ring for Big Jim. He made an agreement with the new Telegraph Company to be the only person able to receive the live horse race results immediately in the Chicago area. He then sells these results to local bookies for 1/2 of their take. In exchange for all his work the Don gave him 5% of the earnings. Some say he isn't happy with this percentage and feels that he deserves a full partnership in the venture. He and Rebecca Ravioli have been good friends for years.

Jill K. - Vanessa Crooner - 42 - Mother to Carrie, Big Jim’s new wife. She chaperoned Carrie & Big Jim everywhere they went before the marriage. She does not approve of Big Jim. Carrie was innocent and could not see how evil this man is, but mommy knows. After they were married she moved into the new house with them. She is going to make sure that Big Jim treats her baby right.

Rebecca G. - Mary Toosteal - 37 - Wife to U.S. Congressman Darrin Toosteal. Mary is the perfect political wife. Elegant, dignified and turns a blind eye to her husbands escapades. She comes from old money and powerful connections.

Gavin F. - Mayor 'Big Bill' Bumpkin - 42 - Big Bill is the Mayor of Chicago. He is known to be friendly and honest which is why people don't believe the rumor that city funds have been vanishing. He and Big Jim have been good friends for many years.

Alice F. – Ginger Roberts - 25 – Writes a society and gossip column for the Tribune. Ginger has made Chicago’s finest look even finer for years. She was invited here by the Baroness.

Peter K. - Jack 'Greasy Thumbs' Guiseppi - 26 - Big Jim Raviolis accountant. There is speculation that he disagrees with Don Wannabe’s involvement in Big Jim’s finances.

Bridget B. - Guilda Guiseppi - 24 - Wife to Jack Guiseppi.

John J. - Cash Steal - 27 - Nothing is known about this man. Why he is here or where he comes from.

Laura P. - Cassandra Steal - 22 - Wife to Cash Steal.

Sarah G. – Claire Heart – 35 – Wife to Rob Heart, a locally famous jazz club owner and childhood friend of Don Wannabe. Claire is rumored to actually be Claire Voyant the best fortuneteller this side of the Mississippi.

Alyson I. – Velma Blake – 21 – Famous jazz singer from New York. She began her career in Chicago at Rob Heart’s club before seeking fame and fortune in the Big Apple.

Alison T. – Harriet Hambini – 29 – Recently hired cigar/cigarette girl at the Four Deuces. Not much is known about her background.

Sarah T. – Lady Nightingale – 18 – Works for Madam Meme at the Four Deuces. She is one of the most powerful and well-known "entertainers" in Chicago. Everyone knows that she is really a Lady of the Evening, but no one knows exactly who her clients are.

October 25, 2005

Knitting Pattern Central

Oh my god! I’m on Knitting Pattern Central!!!!!! That is so cool. I’m excited that they actually wanted to list my pattern. How fun. You can see my Felted Tab Bag & Pouch either in their list of Bags, Totes, & Purses, on the list of Felted Items, or in their list of new patterns.

I feel like a rockstar even if it is just one link to my site.

October 24, 2005

Felted Tab Bag & Pouch Pattern:

Felted Tab Bag
Lamb’s Pride Bulky – 3 (or 4) skeins Sable, 2 (or 3) skeins Fuschia
Trendsetter’s Flora color #722 – 1 ball
Size 13 circular needles
Size 11 double pointed needles

Gauge is unimportant – this is just a bag!

Bottom of bag:
Cast on 40 stitches
Knit for 24 rows in garter stitch
Pick up 12 stitches evenly across the side of the rectangle to form the side of the bag, Pick up 40 stitches evenly across the cast on edge of the rectangle to form the front of the bag, Pick up 12 stitches evenly across the other side of the rectangle to form the other side of the bag.

Bag Body:
Join to begin knitting in the round, being careful not to twist stitches.
Knit 7 rounds Sable
Knit 3 rounds Fuschia
Knit 4 rounds Sable
Knit 3 rounds Fuschia
Knit 4 rounds Sable
Knit 3 rounds Fuschia
Knit 16 rounds Sable
Knit 8 rounds Sable & Flora
Knit 4 rounds Fuschia & Flora
Knit 7 rounds Fuschia
Last Row: Bind off 12, Knit 5, Bind off 5, Knit 5, Bind off 10, Knit 5, Bind off 5, Knit 5, Bind off 12, Knit 5, Bind off 5, Knit 5, Bind off 10, Knit 5, Bind off 5, Knit 5
Transfer remaining stitches to a stitch holder.

Bag Tabs:
For each of the 8 tabs remaining on the needle join new yarn.
Row 1: Knit 1, Knit into the front and back of stitch, Knit 1, Knit into the front and back of stitch,
Knit 1 – 7 sts on needle
Knit in garter stitch for 26 rows.
Bind off

Make 2, 30" long, 4 stitch I chords

Fold each tab in half. Sew end of tab to inside top of bag.
Thread 2 lengths of I chord through tabs
Sew end of each I chord together to form 2 continuous circles.

Felt.. Make sure that you felt this in a pillowcase!!!! The I chords can and will tangle in your agitator!

Matching Felted Pouch:
Leftover Lamb’s Pride Bulky in Fuschia & Sable
Leftover Trendsetter’s Flora color #722
Size 13 straight needles

Gauge is unimportant – this is just a bag!

Body of pouch:
Cast on 24 stitches in Fuschia
Knit 6 rows stockinet - Fuschia
Knit 2 rows stockinet - Sable
Knit 3 rows stockinet - Fuschia
Knit 2 rows stockinet – Sable
Knit 3 rows stockinet - Fuschia
Knit 2 rows stockinet – Sable
Knit 12 rows stockinet – Fuschia
Knit 2 rows stockinet - Sable
Knit 3 rows stockinet - Fuschia
Knit 2 rows stockinet – Sable
Knit 3 rows stockinet - Fuschia
Knit 2 rows stockinet – Sable
Knit 6 rows stockinet – Fuschia

Top flap:
Continue for remaining rows in decrease pattern:
Row 1 – Knit 2, SSK, K across to last 4 sts, K2tog, K2
Row 2 – Purl
Stripe pattern for decreases:
8 rows Fuschia & Flora
2 rows Sable & Flora
3 rows Fuschia & Flora
2 rows Sable & Flora
3 rows Fuschia & Flora
2 rows Sable & Flora
2 rows Fuschia & Flora
Bind off remaining stitches.

Fold body in half and sew side seams.
Felt in a pillowcase!
Line, add a snap closure at the point of the flap.

If you use either of these patterns I'd love to see pictures!!! Thanks!

October 20, 2005

Jeanne needs

Ok here’s another blog game – you type "my name needs" into google and see what you get. So here we go… the pics are random (dad's shot of the skyline, vegas last may, dexterpacking) I just don't like posting w/o pics.

Jeanne needs:

to be in relationship
a patron
to keep here distance
a shooter
to be commended
Godly wisdom and guidance
to get on the list,
guidance in how to look like a well-brought-up young lady
to know you got the request
your prayers today more than ever
to understand that white taxpayers are the slaves now
tennis balls
any changes back by March 3
to ease her soul
to be stopped
to remind us that rudeness is not part of the deal
more help to cure her addiction
a commitment
food, as does her tribe (dude I get a tribe!!! Awesome)
volunteers to help, man.
to get a damned clue
some protection on her journey
help with setting up and cleaning up
a master
some help
some extensive therapy before getting married to anyone
a quick answer
a husband who is very passionate
help of some sort
to do something about these drunken dorfs
to come back to me and love me
To get a clue
to read up on the ordinances in her own little village.
to curve North and die
to go somewhere else
all her strength
an assistant
to be around other kids
to get a clue that I'm sick of her shit.
God's help
to be truthful with investigators
some sleep
all her resources
to kick in her afterburners soon
to stop diddle daddling around
me home
physical intimacy
to go the hell away
to put her diaper back on
a lesson in The destructive power of hurricanes
to show a pic
a big thank You
all the demons she can get
to take time off work.
to be a good girl

All of these are good… but the funniest one was this:

Jeanne needs to stop playing with her vibrator

Oh my.

October 19, 2005

Felted Tab Bag Disaster (sort of)

So my favorite knitting project to date is my giant felted green and brown tab bag. I love it. It was the first real pattern that I had made up and turned out exactly how I wanted it to. I use it as my knitting bag every day. Well anyway I wanted to make one that is similar but tweaked a little for my grandmother (and knitting hero) for her 80th birthday. Her birthday is tomorrow and I’ve been working on this thing forever.

I finally felted it Mon. night – the first time felting in my washer. So I was smart – I made a little pouch thing and felted that for a trial run. It turned out great so no worries about my washer right? Riiiiiiight. I put in the bag happily expecting the same results. But I made one near-fatal error. I didn’t put the bag into a pillowcase when felting it. Always put the felted item in the pillow case!!!! I opened the washer and the two I-chord handles that I had purposely made short for my short grandma had wrapped and tangled themselves around the agitator. It completely stretched them out – and stretched out the tabs holding them to the bag. Instead of nice, even rectangles all of the tabs are now different sized triangles!!! Instead of a big bag with a short handle it’s a small bag with ridiculously long handles and skiiiiny little tabs. It’s completely not what I thought it would be.

To make matters worse I used Lamb’s Pride Bulky. Which I’m generally very happy with. But I’d never felted that out of a pillowcase before. My god it’s so furry!!! It looked like some sort of animal…. And the glittery yarn that I knit into it was completely hidden by the mohair fur. Ugh.

So I washed it again, in a pillowcase and all that happened was the bag got smaller. The handles are still way too long and it’s still way too furry. I ended up giving it a haircut and blocking it as best I could – it didn’t turn out that bad just not what I had imagined…

Here’s a pic of it before it was felted:

and here's some pics of after:

I'll probably post the pattern for it in my next post (I'm gonna try to write it up now but if I don't get it done before my lunch is up I'll finish it tomorrow)

October 18, 2005

Fun Picture Game

I found this at Craving Cleveland - a great blog from a local gal who likes to cook and do fun things in Cleveland. I though I would participate.

Here's the game -Do a Google image search of the following and post the first (or favorite) result for each:

  • The name of the town where you were born
  • The name of the town where you live now
  • Your name
  • Your grandmother's name (just pick one)
  • Your favorite food
  • Your favorite drink
  • Your favorite song
  • Your favorite smell

I was born in Cleveland:

I live in Cleveland now!

My name is Sourire11 - which brought up pictures of my knitting that are on my photoblog! How cool is that! You actually get me if you google me (well my screen name anyways)!

But for my real name lots of hurricane pics came up however I liked this better - apaprantly I'm an obscure french movie:

My grandmother's name is Mary (or Bobbie but I think Mary will get better results). I expected lots of religious stuff - instead I got this:

My favorite food is clearly gelato:

My favorite drink- Citron Cosmo:

My favorite song:And my favorite smell is lilac, or fall but I'm not sure how you smell fall....

Mmmmm Coffee

So I just read this article – in Forbes about coffee (also click on the link at the bottom of the article about 10 health benefits of coffee). I had read something about it before but this really sums it up well. Here’s the quote:

"The problem is that there is a preconceived notion that coffee is bad. It
arrived relatively early when the studies weren't at the level of current
studies," says Peter R. Martin, a professor of psychiatry and pharmacology at
Vanderbilt University. "There's no compelling evidence that shows it's harmful,
and everyday there's more evidence that shows coffee is beneficial."

And here’s some statistics from the article that I liked:
  • 80% of Americans drink coffee, and more than half of the population drinks it every day
  • Coffee is the main source of antioxidants for Americans.
  • Studies link coffee drinking and the prevention of degenerative diseases. Research shows that the more coffee a person drinks, the lower their risk is of developing Parkinson's disease. Studies show those who drink coffee on a daily basis may also be 60% to 80% less likely to develop Parkinson's
  • An antioxidant in coffee called methylpyridinium has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of colorectal and other cancers. The compound, which is formed during the roasting process of coffee beans, is found almost exclusively in coffee and is said to boost blood enzymes.
  • Another study by researchers at the National Cancer Center in Tokyo found that coffee drinkers were half as likely as nondrinkers to develop liver cancer.
So yeah… coffee… it’s good stuff. Think I'll have another cup now.

Walmart jab

This is a hysterical little video by JibJab about "Big Box Store." It's pretty obvious that it's WalMart that they're talking about... I found it amusing.

October 13, 2005

"I loathe the bus"

So in an attempt to be urban and gas-conscious I have been taking the bus to work. Yesterday was my first day doing this and it sucked hard. The thing with taking the bus is you have to know the bus schedule ahead of time or you end up waiting for a half hour for the damn thing to get there. I left my house at quarter to 8 and wasn’t at work until 8:30. Not cool. Then I worked late and ended up on a bus full of "bus people" and not commuters. Also not cool.

Today, however was much better. Matt dropped me off at the bus stop and I was at work 20 min after leaving my house. I also knit on the bus… and using my commute time to knit is definitely a huuuuuge plus. I’m working on the other mitten and it seems to be the perfect bus project – small, portable, and if I screw it up who cares b/c it’s gonna be felted anyway. Everyone may be getting mittens for Christmas!!!

In knitting news I’m going back to birds of a feather in Avon tonight to return a bunch of yarn that I decided that it was the wrong color for what I want to make with it…. Which is going to have to be top-secret since it’s a gift. I did join a knit along for it though, which is my first ever online knit along. It seems pretty cool so far – I get to follow other people’s progress, ask questions, and get inspired…. I also have a place to post pics of my project since I can’t do it here.

October 11, 2005

Wild Dog

Ok so last night when I got home from work my dog greeted me at the door. Which is odd considering I had put him in his crate before I left for work. Yup. My little houdini had managed to take his crate apart. The top of it was completely off. He must have really worked at it – mustering all 11lbs of force. I would love to have seen the look on his face when he finally got the top off and jumped out. "I’m freeee!" He didn’t leave us any unpleasant surprises so that’s good… and seemed all excited when we examined the crate… I’ll bet he was thinking "how mysterious…I wonder how that happened…. we should catch the man who did this!" When I was looking for a dog the number one thing I was looking for was intelligence… now I’m not so sure that was a good idea!

The vet visit was less fun. Dexter has been losing his hair recently so we took him in. Either he has a thyroid imbalance or a nervous condition. For now she is thinking that it is just nerves with the move and complete change in schedule and all and gave him steroids to snap him out of it. He should start to grow hair back now that things have normalized. If he doesn’t … then he has a hormonal imbalance and will need "further testing and medication". Which sounds expensive! So we’re hoping the ‘roids work. Wonder if he’ll ‘roid rage… hee hee hee. The vet also said that his shivering is probably just because he’s cold with the hair loss and all. She suggested…. A sweater! So the Dexter sweater is out in force. He doesn’t seem to mind it – actually I think he kind of likes it. When I went to put it on him last night he wagged his tail and put his head down into it. I’m going to have to suspend all knitting projects and make him another one out of wool. Poor little guy! Matt has wanted me to make him a Steelers sweater for awhile now. Hopefully I’ll have time between work and SnB to run out to a yarn store and pick up some black and gold wool – perhaps cascade superwash? Something that isn’t too expensive or hard to wash. He is a dog after all!

Last night I did have a chance to knit quite a lot - the Steelers game was on so I knit while my husband yelled at the tv. I almost finished one of the mittens in "Knit One Felt Too". They are pretty cute – the mitten is your basic felted mitten but then you knit a cuff to go inside. It looks pretty tall – almost disproportionately tall. I may have to finish and felt one before I start on the other one – but it will felt more in height than in width right? Riiiight. Here’s a pic of my progress.

As far as what’s next in the knitting plans - I have a few Christmas presents in mind but I’m not sure who is reading this blog so I won’t be listing those! I have been thinking about starting a sweater for awhile now... It would be my very first sweater ever although not my first garment. I did knit the ribbon x-back from the spring knitty – It turned out really, really nice after I knit it once, frogged the entire thing, and knit it again! Here's a pic from before I frogged. So I think I can handle a sweater – it’s just a matter of finding one that will be worth knitting and will hold my attention during the knitting. Perhaps samus? (It's geourgous but I'm a little afraid of the cabled bands) Perhaps the ribby cardi? Perhaps the hourglass sweater? Or something different? Not sure yet…. any recommendations?

October 10, 2005

Happy Anniversary to Us!

So this weekend was fun. Friday night was happy hour and that’s always good… then Saturday morning I drove down to Columbus and hung out with Rebecca and LB (who was up from DC for her nephew’s baptism). It was fun – we got to wander around the Easton Yuppie Mall and check out the new Victoria Secret which is apparently a prototype for the new store. It was pretty freaky – lots of starved mannequins in thongs. I seriously thought that I was going to get impaled by a plastic hipbone….there is such a thing as taking "experiential shopping" too far. Then Rebecca and I went to the craftin’ outlaws show. Much more my speed than the yuppie mall. I didn’t get anything since the house has eaten my disposable income, but Rebecca got this gorgeous silver and stained glass necklace. It was a fun – lots of really neat crafts – good inspiration to get back into the knitting/crafting thing.

After the drive home from Columbus (damn Ohio drivers! Damn construction! Damn rain!), Matt and I went to the Playhouse to see "Roomservice". He got the tickets from work somewhere… it was really nice. We decided that instead of doing a big dinner thing for our anniversary we’d spend the dough on subscribing to the playhouse. So we now have 8 tickets to whatever shows we want – and a few guaranteed dates. So that’s nice.

Sunday, our actual 1-year anniversary, we basically just laid low. After spending the past 2 months in a flurry of house hunting, house buying, having a roommate, moving, having out of town guests, and house painting we really just wanted to spend a day together alone doing nothing. It was wonderful. We slept in, went out for a cheap 'n greasy breakfast (the best kind!), and watched the browns game. Then we took our doggie to the park and ran around with him. There is nothing like the look of complete joy on Dexter’s face when he is running at top speed. That dog is so fast! It was like watching a little white bullet tear around the grass.

Instead of getting all dressed up and going downtown as planned we just ended up at Aladdin’s for dinner. It was so nice and peaceful. I highly recommend the Fatoosh salad by the way. It was amazing. I do not recommend, however, saving the top tier of your wedding cake to eat on your anniversary. What a stupid tradition! The cake – which I’m told was excellent the first time around (I didn’t actually have a chance to eat any at my wedding other than the stuff that Matt shoved into my face) tasted like nothing. It was completely flavorless. It was supposed taste like marble cake layered with nut cake and raspberry filling. What a waste of good cake!!! We should have just eaten it the day after our wedding and saved one little piece for our anniversary. It still looked cool at least… All in all it was a very calm and wonderful anniversary weekend.

October 7, 2005

Actual Knitting Content

Ok so this "knit blog" has been about everything but. After an extremely productive weekend (thanks to Matt's 'rents for helping out), and a week spent recovering from a nasty cold and celebrating my mom's 50th things have finally, finally started to normalize. I've actually been able to do things like make dinner and watch tv in my own house! Oh and by the way the #1 thing that is amazing about living in a house is the backyard. I have really enjoyed sitting out side reading, watching Dexter chase chipmunks, and enjoying the last few days of summer weather. I so need to get a hammock and a grill... but until then I think we need to buy one of those portable fire-pit thingies for our housewarming party. Oh yeah - we're having a housewarming party sometime over the weekend of Nov. 11th. More details I'm sure will follow....

Anyways so last night I decided that it was time to knit.... but I've been away from it for so long that the bag I had been working on was a little overwhelming.... I needed a project that I could finish in one night so that I could have some sense of acomplishment and get my knitting confidence back. So I knit myself a cell phone coozie. I had been worried about my shiny new razr phone getting dinged up in my purse this should keep it nice and shiny for good!

I didn't want it to have a flap or a button or anything because it takes me long enough to find my cell phone when it's ringing - let alone mess with a button. So I had to make it tight enough to stay on. I also didn't want to seam anything in the spirit of keeping this a under 2 hour project - so I knit it on double pointed needles and used the three needle bindoff to close one end. I think if i made it again I would make it a little taller so that the stockinette edge would roll back on itself above the phone and make a little more of a closure... but oh well... I'm happy with the results. Hopefully my next knitting post will be about something a little more substantial!

Attack of the killer...Squirrel?

I was told that this was funny.....

So I'm sitting outside in a little camp chair in my back yard reading with Dexter happily lying underneath my chair....and all of a sudden I hear this scampering noise. I look up and this squirrel comes running down the roof of my garage, stops, makes this horrible noise, and throws an acorn at me. That's right. A squirrel threw an acorn at me. So I picked it up and threw it back at him.

At least I didn't make him a decanter. Thanks to Mark for that freaky link.
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