October 30, 2012

Sandy in Cleveland.

So.  Last night.  Wow.  70 mph winds, ridiculous rain, 20 foot plus waves.  I know it was nowhere near the destruction that NYC and NJ faced but Cleveland got hit hard.  So I thought I'd post some of the things I've seen / experienced.

Edgewater Marina
Lake Erie this morning from Edgewater Marina.  Photo courtesy of my dad.
We were super, super lucky.  We are fine.  Our house is fine.  We have power.  And water.  The only damage we're dealing with is our gate which blew off it's hinges and is all warped and messed up.  So we are extremely lucky and thankful.  Because it could have been so, SO much worse:

Edgewater Marina
Another crazy Lake Erie picture from my dad.  The waves are bigger than the breakwall!!!

The wind last night sounded like thunder.  I've never heard that before.  So many people I know have roof damage, or serious leaks, or water in their basements.  We are dry, thank God.  And our roof is in tact.  And there are no trees on anything all that important.  Although they are down all over the city and some were not as lucky:
Picture courtesy of @TishTish of my parents' street.  Entire tree uprooted.  It seems to have missed the houses but SCARY.

In West Park we were with power for about 15 hours.  No big deal at all.  They are estimating that the 157,000 people in Cuyahoga County who don't have power won't see it back on for a week.  That is a horribly long time.  I hope that estimate is off.

Breakfast by candlelight. Hopefully our power comes on again soon!
Breakfast by candlelight.  Everything is a great adventure for kids if you spin it that way!

Matt's office was without power today so he worked from home:

Working from home.
With lots of help, of course.
The kids played with blocks and puzzles and had LOTS of questions about the power situation.
Awesome creation by our Daughter.  Blocks always look so PoMo.

Why can't we have toast?  Why doesn't my heater work?  Will my fish be ok in the dark?  What's' with the dog?
She's afraid of the wind. So the next few days should be fun. #dog #dogsofinstagram #frankenstorm
The dog was terrified of this entire ordeal and basically tried to sleep on my head last night.

Some of the biggest damage happened on the lakefront where there were waves big enough to go over the breakwalls.  I-90 was flooded and shut down.  And marinas were devastated:

Edgewater Marina
Edgewater Marina

Edgewater Marina

Edgewater Marina

Edgewater Marina
Photos of Edgewater Marina all courtesy of my dad.

According to my dad, Captain Tom, over 30 boats sank out of Edgewater with many more damaged.  So far the Peerless II is still afloat but it's nowhere near out of the woods yet:

103012 024
The Peerless II.  She's still afloat but inaccessible.  And if the whole dock goes.... let's hope it holds.
Overall this was a pretty terrifying storm.  My heart goes out to those who are still without power and are dealing with serious damage to their homes.

October 24, 2012

Brueggers Blog Up Event.

So I'm super late in posting this... But!  On Thursday I was lucky enough to attend the Bruegger's Bagels Blog Up Event.

This was the perfect time to learn about the bagel making process, try some of their new fall flavors, hang out with some other cool Cleveland Bloggers, and meet Executive Chef Phillip Smith:

brueggers Blog up.
First we sat down with him for a little chat about their philosophy and goals.  And also got to try a DELICIOUS egg/bagel/salmon thing that the chef had whipped up for us.  I love the idea of using bagels in egg bakes like that.  Great plan for the extra bagels and a perfect thing to do for out of town company over the holidays.  I've made egg bakes with bread before but the bagels added a great solidity.  The texture was much nicer than with bread.  I will most definitely be doing this in the future.

Then we got to try out some of the new Fall Bagels.  Actually it kindof happened all at once because when The Dude saw the bagels he basically took off running towards them.  He especially liked the new Cranberry Apple bagel made with sweet dried cranberries and apple pieces:

Enjoying a bagel at the #brueggersblogup
Then we got to tour the store and see from behind the scenes how everything is made while kids got to stuff themselves on bagels and do a fun fall craft:

brueggers Blog up.

 Chef Phillip Smith is super passionate about his work.  He takes the philosophy of simple, good, ingredients = good food seriously:

brueggers Blog up.
Also taken seriously, their sundried tomato spread.
Did you know that bagels are just 5 basic ingredients?  'cause I didn't.  But the thought that simple is better is one that I absolutely identify with.  If the basics are good you don't need alot of nonsense to make a dish really spectacular. 


 It was fascinating to learn about how bagels are made.  I had no idea.  First they boil them:

brueggers Blog up.
Then they roll them in whatever they need - in this case sesame seeds:

brueggers Blog up.
Then they bake them in this awesome stone-hearth rotating oven:

brueggers Blog up.
And voila!  Delicious bagels.  They bake all day so that anytime you go in you get a fresh baked bagel.  Again - simple concept = delicious, fresh food.


After that we had some time for Q and A with the Chef while we tried his new-for-fall butternut squash soup:

brueggers Blog up.
It has apples in it for sweetness.  YUM.
And learned about their other fall flavors including my personal favorite - Pumpkin Cream Cheese.  I was a bit distracted, though, because the introduction of balloons turned my children into crazy people:

brueggers Blog up.
YAY BALLOONS!!!  Let's run around screaming even thought we're in a restaurant!!!
So we said our goodbyes and headed home to enjoy some bagels for lunch:

She LOVES the cinnamon sugar bagel. #brueggrersblogup
Cinnamon Sugar bagel for lunch?  BEST EVER!

The Dude prefers a plain bagel w LOTS of PB&j. #brueggersblogup
Dude prefers his with LOTS of PB and J.
And the next morning I made myself a sandwich that I think Chef Phillip Smith would have approved of:
Bruegger's Bagel, Bruegger's Veggie Cream Cheese, CSA Egg, CSA Jalapeno Havarti Cheese.  DELICIOUS.

Overall it was a really cool event and one that I was thrilled to be invited too!

brueggers Blog up.

I attended this event for free but was under no obligation to blog about it.  All opinions, as always, are my own.

October 19, 2012

All Knit No Purl...

So!  How about a quick 'n dirty knitting update post instead of actual content?  But before we get to that - a quick announcement.  Destination Yarn will be at the Autumn Fiber Event in Ashland tomorrow!  It's my first actual fiber show and I'm pretty excited/nervous about it.

Sat at That'll Do Farm
Sat at That'll Do Farm

 I have lots of yarn and it sounds like it's going to be a great event so we'll just go with excited.  Pretty charged that my company is taking this step, though.  Hopefully there will be more fiber festivals in my future!

Anyways I'd love to show off some lovely finished projects but I have two things that I just can't seem to get off the needles....  First up is the Ripple Hat:

Ripple Hat

I started this waaaay back when I went on a mini-vacation to Geneva State Park.  Which is of course unblogged because for some reason I can't get it together to blog anything about any trip ever.  AHEM.  Anyways because of the way the hat increases to form the ripples it's ALOT of stitches:

Ripple Hat
But pretty!  The yarn I'm using is Frozen Great Lake.  Which seemed appropriate as I was on vaca on the Great Lake.  But now that it's fall these colors aren't appealing to me as much anymore so it has been sitting untouched in my knitting basket for awhile now.

Second up is my Hitchiker.

Hitchiker Scarf
Another project I started on an awesome and yet unblogged vacation.  I LOVE the way that this is turning out.  The colorway Route 66 just sings in this pattern.  However on second thought knitting another project that is basically miles of garter stitch after the Color Affection was a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad plan.

Hitchiker Scarf
So. Much. Garter. Stitch.
It is pretty, though.

Hitchiker Scarf

But garter stitch.  Ugh. 

Hitchiker Scarf
All knit no purl makes Jeanne a dull girl.  All knit no purl makes Jeanne a dull girl.  All knit no purl...
So it's sitting untouched also.  Which basically means I haven't been knitting.  See I'm stuck in that place where the fun of fall is calling to me.  I want to work on large projects out of deliciously wooly wool.  Possibly even bulky weight.  Maybe with some cables.  But!  I told myself I'd finish these summery knits first.  So I'm just not knitting.  Which sucks.  I think I need to walk away from the simple sock yarn projects and start a really complicated sweater or something.  Get my brain going again.

Hitchiker Scarf
What do you guys think?

October 18, 2012

Like to End Cancer.

So I mentioned before that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month.  And that it's nice to be able to DO something about it.  Here's another super, SUPER, easy thing that you can do:

For every new like on the Gotta Love Chevy NEO page, $1 will be contributed to the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer initiative.

That's it! Like the page, they donate $1.  Super simple and super effective way to raise money to fight this terrible disease.  They are accepting likes now through October 31 and are just under halfway to their goal.  So go over to Faceook and click like!

And to thank you for helping spread awareness for breast cancer, Gotta Love Chevy NEO is giving away 3 FAN-tastic Chevy Girl Makeover Experiences.  3 winners will receive a Chevy Girl Makeover complete with hair, makeup, lunch and a personal shopping experience. Plus, the winners' FAN-Tastic Chevy Girl Makeovers will be featured on Fox 8 New Day Cleveland!

There's really no reason not to go click like....

I received compensation for this post however all opinions are always my own and I most definitely support this cause!

October 9, 2012


So!  Today is our eighth wedding anniversary.  We're going out to dinner tonight to celebrate.  I can't wait for some normal adult conversations with my favorite person and an uninterrupted meal that I don't have to share.  It's really the simple things that are complete luxuries these days.

West Side Market 100
Gee.  I wonder why.
So we were reminiscing and ended up getting out our photo album.   Which prompted a whole discussion about how completely terrible our wedding pictures are.

No, really.  It's ok.  We've both come to terms with it.  See we got married at absolutely the WORST time for photography.  2004 was right on the cusp of digital.  Which means that everything was still based on old photography methods. 

For example our wedding album looks like this:

Old school, silver edges, limited amount of prints.  Not even close to one of the fancy graphic-designed books that most people we know have.

8 years ago today!

But!  It does have 94 pictures in it.  Which is a huge amount when you consider that the pricing lists we originally discussed with the photographer were based on rolls of film.  Yes.  Film.  At 36 per roll the original plan for our wedding day was to have 108 pictures taken TOTAL.

So when our photographer shot digital we were thrilled.  Because that meant that they took wait for it... 274 pictures. Today it's crazy to even think of having less than 2000 taken of a wedding day.

The downside to the digital conversion, of course, was that our wedding was shot on an early DSLR.  Which I'm guessing was less powerful than the camera on my iphone. So even the blowups in our wedding alum start to get a little blurry:

This would be an awesome picture.  If we weren't blurry.
And there was NO option to purchase full digital copies.  Nope.  Now that's just included.  Then I had to beg and plead and pay a ton of money for a CD of very small files.  The whole set is on flickr here but don't try to blow them up bigger than this:

348x232 pixles should be enough for anything you'd ever want, right?
 Or heaven forbid print them.  No bueno.

There's also quite a bit missing from the day.  Mainly because photographers were still thinking analog.  If you only get 108 pictures total those need to count.  So you take the posed family photos and none of the candid ones that are so popular now.

Most of our photographs are some variation of this.
Or nonsense like this.  It's possible that our photographer was a douchebag now that I think about it...
Any of the detail shots are ones that I specifically asked for.  Now photographers take tons of detail pictures as a matter of course.  Dress!  Shoes!  Rings! Cake!  Invites!  Bouquet!  All photographed individually and completely.  This is what we got:

Quick put all of the details in one shot!  Don't want to waste film!  Wait.
Also because it was early digital there was no post-processing.  Photoshop?  HA!  Nope.  Everything Straight Out of the Camera.  Not even the benefit of the developing process.  Oh wait.  They did do a few of the fun early digital tricks such as converting to black and white:

Are you impressed?
Or terrible things with color like this:

spot color makes the baby Jesus cry
At least we were spared any sepia nonsense.   Although I believe I put the smackdown on that business pre-wedding.  There is never any excuse for sepia.

We look so young!  8 years ago today. @verozarc
And yet I love me some instagram.  Go figure.

So yeah.  We got married at absolutely the worst time for photography.  But you know what?   It was the best time for US.  We were starting our adult lives and we wanted to do it together.  Completely.  Married.  And I wouldn't change that for all the shiny, modern, designed photobooks and full-sized digital images in the world.

Although this does make me want to get some nice, professional photographs taken of our family... anyone know of anyone good?
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