Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Dear Luther

From the desk of Maggie Bach

Dear Luther

Things aren't quite the same in Philly without you. I've been forced to play with Gus again. He's ok, but he looks funny. He doesn't look like us. He has freckles and a patch over one of his eyes. He's no typical tri-color beagle. When I tire Gus out, I turn to howling incessantly at Molly. Remember when we kept my mom up doing that???

Anyway, I hear you escaped today. Nice try. Thing is, you just don't get it yet. You are LIVING THE LIFE with these Bachs---you have hit the motherload. Also, good job eating dad's spaghetti tonight.

I miss you and can't wait to hang out by the fountain in a month or so.



Monday, August 29, 2005

I love the internet

Seriously, what did we do without the internet. I try, really hard, to imagine my life, pre-email, pre-tetris, pre-ofoto/snapfish, pre-bookmarks. It just isn't possible to live the way we do today without the internet is it?

Exhibit A-Maggie finished off the TV remote in my bedroom tonight (she'll be 1 year old in 3 weeks and everyone assures me the chewing MAGICALLY gets better when she hits that milestone). A few weeks ago, after her first attempt to injest it, I bought a universal replacement remote. It worked GREAT, until I dropped it and the batteries fell out (also eaten by Maggie), and I didn't replace them in time for the magic remote to remember the codes. Then, of course, the manual magically disappeared (not eaten by Maggie). So I've got an eaten remote and one that doesn't work because I lost the code sheet. Well don't you know, there is a website with links to ALL universal remote secret code pages? And that, within 3 minutes, I was linked to Sony's webpage, opening acrobat and finding the secret code for my remote. I programmed it and it worked immediately. I wrote the code number down and will record it here, so when this all happens again, it will be a much easier reprogram; my magic number is 59.

I miss Luther

Mom came and collected Luther from me yesterday. Yes, Yes, Yes, I am THRILLED that Luther is at an adoptive home where I will see him again. But I miss that cute little beagle boy.

Things seem to be back to normal here though; Gus and Maggie have resumed their playfulness and seem to have stopped beating up on Molly. Now I'm watching "Prison Break," my first crack at the new fall line up. So far I've learned one new phrase "Prisneyland." I kinda like that one. I'm almost finished with the first sleeve of the silk garden sweater (!) And I kinda like the new Rowan "Soft Tweed;" even if some say it looks like "dryer lint..."

Thursday, August 25, 2005

The Trials and Tribulations of Lace

So, for the umpteenth time, I've decided I want/must try again to conquer knitting lace. I know this makes me
a) crazy
b) a glutton for punishment
c) masochistic
d) all of the above

Certainly I can knit pretty much anything else, Fair Isle (easier since I learned to knit with two hands), intricate cables (heck I even did mitered corners in cabling with Elsbeth "I can only write patterns that I can understand" Lavold); Intarsia (love those bobbins), Socks (I'll never forget turning my first heel); I can even crochet Granny Squares. But since the beginning of my knitting career (now entering its 4th year!), lace knitting has eluded me. I've bought countless books of gorgeous, enviable patterns for shawls, scarfs and the like. It doesn't matter how many times I try, I just DO NOT GET IT.

So I read many patterns and looked through lots of those books again and settled on the "Birds Nest" Lace knitted shawl from Folk Shawls. With Lisa's expert guidance, I pick a delicious color of new Rowan 4 ply Cashsoft. I picked a receipient, Grandma, for Christmas. And I set off to swatch; here is the result thus far:

Another view:
I made two mistakes in the 2nd and 3rd repeat of the pattern and I'm pretty sure where I did it. All in all, I'm pretty happy with the result of the swatch and I really do LOVE LOVE LOVE the yarn. I think it will block out nicely as well. I've decided to employ the method I use with cables; writing out on note cards attached with a ring and flipping when I finish the row. I just cannot read charts. It is a lost cause. I am a reader of words, not symbols on graph paper.

The other problem, and this is the big one, I'm not sure how to recognize my mistakes (often until it is too late) and then fixing them (i.e. unknitting a row of yarn over and SSK) is an utter disaster. So, any advice on this?

Knitty Delicious

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Bad mornings

Every morning this week has contained an incident (or two) that have started the day of horribly. Thankfully, the ENTIRE days were not wasted by said bad events---but today was the cream of the crop; I dropped my IPOD. The entire crystal display cracked. It was so ugly.
Now, I can't live without my IPOD. It's with me all the time---car, bus, office, in the sqaure knitting. Going back to listening to cd's in the car is just unfathomable. So, I did what any logical person would do, I went out and bought a new one. Sure, on my poultry social work salary it was a stretch, but this IPOD MAKES ME HAPPY, and I don't think you can put a price on that happiness. Just like with the new camera. Taking thousands of photos of my beagles and my knitting tickles me pink. So, when the camera started to take photos that look hazy, I knew it is time to upgrade, and I'm happy I did. I know some folks like to think of such big ticket items as Christmas or Birthday gifts, but my Birthday has long since past and I've got other plans for Christmas. One thing that I know now about IPOD, the Apple warranty doesn't cover any I will not NOT not drop it. In fact I am going to keep it wrapped in bubble wrap for protection. The other thing, this new IPOD is IN COLOR! Giddyup.
I've been informed by the fire marshall that I cannot have a ceremonial burning of the new Knitters magazine, so I've decided the entire things should be posted on
I'll bring it tonight ladies so we can vomit on it together.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Luther's rough day

I am SOOOOOO Handsome

Maggie and Luther finally konk out

They hear a bell on TV and instantly wake up

Dear Daddy, I can't wait to come to my forever home and sleep on your heart!

Luther has had a rough day...actually Luther is fine...I am traumatized. Luther somehow escaped from my FENCED IN yard this morning. When I realized he was gone, he was exploring the yard of my neighbor three doors down. Everyone had left for work, so I was left to try to get into the back alley and retrieve him. I running around the neighborhood, in a skirt, screaming "Luther, Luther!" I come to the alley only to find that some new neighbors had re-fenced and PADLOCKED the alley. I'm frantic and climb a four foot wall, in the skirt, holding on to the upper part of the fence. There he is. I call him and he comes to me immediatley. He knows his name is Luther (sorry dad!) and I carried him home...relieved but still a bit frantic.

When I came home from work, Luther tried to escape again through the same place, under the porch. I shored up the opening. Hopefully there will be no more escapes. Then tonight, Luther was attacked by Ms. Aggressive, Molly, resulting in his ear being pierced and a gorgeous spatter of blood all over the couch and subsequently, the bathroom. He LOVES baths. He loves even more being wrapped in a towel and held like a baby. I also heard him howl and bark today and he has discovered the stash of squeeky toys throughout the house.

On another note, my new issue of Knitters arrived and it is an absolute train wreck. I will be having a ceremonial burning of it at Knitting Circle tomorrow night for all of you that want to participate in the exorcism of bad knitting design.


Monday, August 22, 2005

Mission Accomplished!

Mom and Dad are giving Luther his forever home!

Luther is now named Bennett Luther Bach...Welcome home sweetie pie! You are going to LOVE LOVE LOVE life at the Joyhouse!

Updates after our first night with Luther

Crap! ANOTHER dog who likes to sleep UNDER the covers! It was mighty HOT in my bedroom last night, with Gus, Maggie and Luthy jockeying for position. I had to turn the A/C WAY down. He slept through the night without incident and no accidents. I'm trying hard to get my folks to make him a Bach Beagle and give him the home he needs and deserves at the Joy House. So please, email Peter and Barbara at and encourage them that it is a good time for the Cape Cod Beagles to become a threesome!

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The Potato Chip Scarf

Luther Models the Scarf
See, its all RUFFLES!!!!
The scarf came out great, REALLY long and the colors migrate nicely (thanks Noro Gods)
I think it looks great on little Luther. My regular model, Gus, has gone on strike!

Some cute photos of the Fur Kids

Are you kidding me? Another dog?

Yawny Delicious, Gus Bach

Luther (left) and his twin, Maggie

Gus sticking out his tongue!

Good News!

---West Philadelphia

For deli afficiandos everywhere, there is joy in Mudville. There is a "Help Wanted" sign at Koch's. Maybe there will be another brisket with muchee...Bob's legacy may live on...


In addition to the excitement of picking up Luther, this weekend included "Napolean Dynamite" night at the Wynne's. Jen, Bob and I had been planning this evening for months. We had amazing food; it also turned into Middle Eastern/Meditterrean Night with Hummus, Falafel, Cous Cous Salad, Spanokopita and Baklava. And then, there were the amazing drinks. Bob tells a funny joke, "Martini's are like boobs. One isn't enough and three is too many." After *** martini's (edited for parental consumption) I fell to the ground in a fit of laughter as I recounted my recent travels to Squatland and the wee lambies, lassies and laddies that were abound. And I'm really NOT much of a drinker anymore! I swear!

On a knitting note, I picked up the Silk Garden sweater again. I have finished the back and am working on both sleeves at once. It has three quarter length sleeves and I've already done about 4 of the 10 inches requires before shaping the sleeve cap. My new camera needs to have battaries charged so I'll post some photos tomorrow of the work in progress. I'd really forgotten what an easy pattern it is and how great the yarn feels. I'm STILL casting off the "potato chip" scarf; which I FINALLY figured out WHY it is called the potato scarf-because its all ruffles (how clever!) By the time I finished knitting it, it was like 1500+ stitches. Add to it, the Denise needles which keep coming apart and I'm WICKED frustrated with it. So I've decided to do a bit a time so as not to drive myself bonkers with multiple repeated cast offs.

The beagle wrestling has commenced again and I think I need to referree.


Is this Maggie or Luther????

Luther LOVES rawhide!

The twins; Maggie (left) and Luther

Meet Luther, my foster dog. For anyone who is considering a pup, think about adopting Luther. He is truly a rescue who needs to find his "forever home." I've had him for a few hours now and I am utterly in love with him. Maggie and Luther are either 1)soulmates or 2) long lost siblings.
Luther likes rawhide and chew toys. They keep him very busy; but he doesn't seem agressive with them.
He's a classic tri-color beagle who MUST have been in a home before as he climbs stairs like a champ. He didn't like being in the car in the crate, but after I took him out and let him sit with me, he did great for the rest of the trip from Baltimore.
ISN'T He SWEET?!?!?!
If you can't adopt a dog, consider donating to BREW Beagle Rescue and help support me and other beagle foster mom's support these lovely dogs! Check out

Thursday, August 18, 2005

The Pump

The Greatest Dog Toy Ever

Heather and I hit Target tonight. God, I love that store. I don't think I have EVER gotten out of Target WITHOUT spending $100. I mean I just HAD to buy 2 new summer nighties, 3 bras (because Maggie ate mine!), M and M's and new really good smelling hand soap. But the best thing I bought was the greatest dog toy ever. It is a squeeky (plastic) Isacc Mizrahi pump. Please see photo above as my words CANNOT do it justice. Maggie and Gus have been fighting over it all night. The other big thing today was that I got my new camera. It is pretty cool...a completely DIFFERENT feel than my Canon. It will take me a while to get used to how to handle it. I do like the mini size of the SD memory card. I highly recommend ordering from J and R Music World (they are online). Talk about great service. Okay, this sounds like a commercial and Mag and Gus are fighting over their pump...

Ode to the Bacon Egg and Cheese

I love thee o' breakfast sandwich
you fill my tummy with glee
you make the rumbles go away
and fill my arteries with badness
thank you god for the bacon egg and cheese (from Sal's)

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

For Shizzle

My Nizzle, it was goodizzle to see all my homies at knitting circleizzle tonight!
The West Wing Rules!

Okay enough other thought today was my favorite lines from Seinfeld...since I'm kinda in a rut regarding episodic deja vu. So here is my top five, as of now. This is subject to change...

(1) (this will not change) "The sea was angry that day my friends, like an old man trying to send back soup in a deli."
(2) "So, you think you are SPONGE WORTHY?"
(3) "That is one magic loogie"
(4) "Are you still master of your domain?"
(5) "Maybe the dingo ate your baby."
(5a) "No soup for you!"
(5b) "No you're schmoopy!!!!!"

So other suggestions for memorable Seinfeld lines?
Almost finished with the "potato chip scarf," care of knitpicks free pattern. I am knitting it in Noro's pretty hot. Will post photos soon. Also waiting for new digital camera to arrive which should facilitate some good photos!
I've got to got to got to start working on my silk garden sweater again ASAP so I can start the entrelac sweater! Oye! So much knitting, so little time!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Additions to Chris' Best of Philly

Favorite things about the Ballpark
-Crab Fries with Cheese Cup
-Preferred Parking
-Twist Ice Cream in a Waffle Cone
-The Phanatic's Antics
-The Bell Ringing when the Phils hit a homerun

Favorite Sweet Treats (non ice cream)
Trader Joe's Molasses Chew Cookies

Best Thing about WAWA
No ATM fees

Take me out to the ball game

Heather and I hit the Phils game last night...We had rocking seats behind home plate. We took in the crab fries, the bulls BBQ, the ice cream, the team name it. Sadly, the phils lost to the Nationals and quite honestly the game was not pretty. But it was a lovely night for baseball. The heat had finally broken and there was a gorgeous breeze blowing through. Not to mention the total HOTTIE sitting in front of me. See pic below of his neck, which I found very attractive.
I can't believe it is only Tuesday. I'm so tired. Need to do a whole lot of nothing tonight, but Maggie attacked the first floor and trashed the place this morning---so I've got to clean.
Only one more month until she will be a year old, hopefully things will magically be better by then.

This was the guy sitting in front of me...I thought he had a HOT neck Posted by Picasa

The phanatic watches the game from the dugout Posted by Picasa



We were 28 rows behind home plate...this was the view from our seats Posted by Picasa

knittying delicious with frankly delicious Posted by Picasa

We ran into Andrea at the game...she, as always, was all smiles Posted by Picasa

The Friendly Wave

Seinfeld moment of the day

Last night, while Heather and I were leaving the Phillies game, we were surrounded by very large SUV's trying to squeeze out of the parking lot onto Broad Street. I have no problem letting people in to merge, if this gesture is acknowledged with a "friendly wave." Of course, this comes from a Seinfeld episode during which Jerry is talking to Elaine while driving and is "cut off" by someone merging when Elaine asks, "Did you get a friendly wave?"

Monday, August 15, 2005

Felted Bag

<-----After felting

<---Before felting
<---Before felting

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Chris' Best of Philly

I ventured out into the heat today...for various reasons but mostly to get "de-sasquatched" at Adolph Beicker. While out, I picked up a copy of Philly Mag's annual "Best of Philly" issue---to see what I was "missing." I decided after reading that I wasn't missing much and decided to compile my own list. To my Philly friends, feel free to post your fav's of Philly too!

Best Dinner Out for Under $10
Lakeside Chinese Deli (and I'm not talking just dim sum, I'm talking hard core yummy, multi-course, 2 main dish dinner)

Best Lakeside Companions
Heather and Allison

Best West Philly Ethnic Food
New Delhi (Indian)--And they DELIVER to HUP and HOME!
Vientiane (Laotian/Thai)

I plea the fifth re the multitude of Ethiopian places as this is not my cup of tea.

Best commuting tool after the IPOD
The 445 Penn Bus; door to door transport from the HUP to 46th Street; and always a seat!

Best companions
Molly, Maggie and Gussy

Best Addition to Philadelphia Fast Food Choices
The Chick-Fil-A at the IKEA plaza in South Phila

Best Ice Cream Concoctions
Choco Ice Cream, Nutella and Sugar Cookie Dough at Scooooope DeVille
Founders Favorite with Cake Batter Ice Cream at Cold Stone Creamery

Best thing to do when dogs are fighting over a greenie
Squirt with squirt gun! Do not attempt to separate dogs manually

Best way to the HUP ER after a dog bite
The 42 Bus (who needs a cab voucher?!)

Best thing about Marathon
Thursday night Matzoh Ball Soup
Banana Smoothie with Choco Fro Yogurt

Best thing about STRIKES bowling "lounge"
The smoke machine that makes it almost impossible to aim for the pins

Best thing about summer in West Phila

Top 3 places to hang out on a hot Sunday afternoon
Cosi (with an iced latte to boot)
Barnes and Noble
The Subaru

Best Saturday Activites
BREW adoption days
Shopping at Home Depot
Watching Netflix movies and remembering why I hate going to the movies

Best thing about Phila Airport
The International Terminal

Best All Around Esthetician
Kin at Adolph Biecker; who waxes my brows and pampers me with facials

That's all I can come up with for now...I'll keep adding things (granted much of it has to do with this weekend!)

PS Finished and felted bag...will post tomorrow

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Vegetable Lasagna

Seinfeld moment of the day: Episode "The Butter Shave."
While Kramer covering himself in butter as a moisturizer is quite funny, the real funny part of this episode is Elaine and Puddy's return from traveling through Europe. They are ready to kill each other as David attempts to figure out how many Kroner he has. This reminded me and mom and I and our trip in May/June. How many nights did we sit in our cabin/hotel room and try to figure out just how many Euro/Pence and Pounds we had? And what kind of tip did we really give that waitress at Heathrow as we unloaded all of those "p's?" God...that was a riot momala. Good times...Good times.

So today's forcast is for the mercury to top out around 99 with a heat index around 110. Last evening, on the 11 o'clock news, they compared Philadelphia to Miami. It was just 1 degree warmer in Miami. However, it never really snows in Miami, does it? Maybe this is a sign that it is time to move to Miami. Then again, hurricanes. Lots of pros and cons...lots of pros and cons.

By the way, TO has to GO. We can win without him. Go Eagles!
Phillies win in SD...I have tix Monday night and can't wait to get me so CRAB FRIES with Heather.

Must go jockey for space in front of A/C with beagles

Friday, August 12, 2005

I love my mommy! Posted by Picasa

Justin says MOOOOOOOOOO Posted by Picasa

Look at that AMAZING blanket Posted by Picasa

Justin doesn't LOVE tummy time Posted by Picasa

Justin and me, his 33 year old girlfriend! Posted by Picasa

What a snuggle bunny Posted by Picasa

Heather gets cozy with a SHOCKED Justin Posted by Picasa