3/31/2005 08:08:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|Go see the movie Downfall. We saw it last night and it was fantastic. It takes place near the end of WWII, as the Russian army is encroaching upon Berlin. Most of the movie takes place in the bunker where Hitler et al. spent their final days as Berlin fell (and ultimately committed suicide). The actor who plays Hitler is incredible. A really powerful movie. Speaking of war, read this horrible story from NPR. I guess the problem isn't specific to the current war, but I'm hoping that, in 2005, the government doesn't treat post-combat mental illness simply as an "adjustment disorder" (seriously what they called it in this story). OK, enough serious stuff. Here are some cuties I finished for a friend's baby:

I used a Lorna Laces yarn...forgot what kind. To match, I also made the Umbilical Cord hat from Stich N Bitch, using Cascade 220 in yellow. It makes a very cute set. This is what's on deck. I'm going to use a black Alpaca my mom brought me back from Ecuador, and I'm not going to do the edging. Hopefully it will turn out cute.|W|P|111232264400518893|W|P|Downfall|W|P|4/01/2005 11:09:00 AM|W|P|Blogger the knitrider|W|P|those are some cute baby booties! i love that yarn! its the one that comes in the mini skein, right?4/05/2005 08:33:00 AM|W|P|Blogger Melissa|W|P|Thanks! Yes, it's the mini-skein. It looks like you're in Chicago too...I got the yarn at Knitter's Niche on Southport, and it came with a free pattern for the booties. Very easy!3/28/2005 08:49:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|So we hosted an Easter brunch on Sunday. Some samplings from the buffet...

The Paschal Lamb from Feast

Cheese and Spinach Strata

"Damn girl, those muffins are good!"

We had about a dozen people stop by, and of course we still had a ton of food left over. I made bellinis, which were awesome. I'm amazed at how many bottles of champagne we went through. Unfortunately, we didn't make it to church -- don't tell my mom! The catholic guilt has settled and is festering!

On Friday night, I went to a cooking class at the Chopping Block with Anna and Rachele. The theme was "Girls Night: Las Vegas." The class was a demonstration (we didn't actually cook), which was still fun. The instructor made a collection of fabulous appetizers, which we got to eat as we sipped wine and vodka & cranberry juice. Definitely something different that I would do again. It also rekindled my secret desire to someday go to culinary school and do catering.

Ok, I'm watching the new bachelor with Jerry O'Connell's brother Charlie. Is it just me or does it sound like he's got a wad of phlegm permanently caught in his throat? They have tweaked the formula a bit, and this crop of bachelorettes look particularly trashy. Anyway, I'm probably hooked again.

Check it out, the finished Ruffles Scarf:

|W|P|111206485065786525|W|P|Mmmm...Lamb|W|P|3/24/2005 10:23:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|Today was one of those days where almost everyone at work was annoying me. I have a new nemesis at work...he's a total social retard but thinks that because he's an attorney and I'm not he holds rank with me. I've decided to call him my "Newman," which is perfect because his last name is two syllables and evokes the same frustration when said as Jerry used to. Went out with work girls yesterday to Vermillion. It's billed as South American/Indian fusion. I'm usually apprehensive about fusing such disparate cuisines (a la Sushi Samba Rio), but it was very good. The place was empty, which is odd for a downtown spot during lunchtime. The decor was bright colors agains black and white backgrounds, which kind of reminded me of that 80s artwork inspired by the cover of Duran Duran's Rio album. But I digress... Tomorrow night I'm going to a cooking class at the Chopping Block in Lincoln Square with my sister and hopefully future sister-in -law. It's a Vegas-themed class, and we are allowed to drink wine! I'm super excited, but the three of us together are likely to get a little shitty. The rest of the weekend will be low key. We're hosting Easter brunch on Sunday. I'm making a couple of things from Nigella's new book, including lamb shoulder. Yum! On the knitting front, someone's favorite dog is getting a new sweater. The Murphster Posted by Hello I'm knitting a sweater using this great pattern. He's too cute, isn't he?|W|P|111172461610323596|W|P|Annoying day|W|P|3/22/2005 09:28:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|So my brother, aka The Grecian Gringo, has started his own photoblog where he is posting photos from his travels in South America. The photos are incredible...definitely worth a look. According to Nick, his blog will just be devoted to photos, and he will not post about (and I quote) "frivolous crap...there is enuf blogs that provide that at ad naseum (check my sister's one out)." Needless to say, I was disappointed to learn that my bro wasn't enjoying my new blog. Nick, I take this opportunity to officially apologize for leading such an uninteresting, banal existence. I'm having blogger's block right now. With all of the depressing things going on this week, from Schiavo to the Minnesota murders, I would like to post about something cheery. We are watching "Fletch" right now, and I'm hooked. Maybe I'll have more to say tomorrow.|W|P|111155019405969394|W|P|The Grecian Gringo|W|P|3/23/2005 10:08:00 PM|W|P|Anonymous Colleen|W|P|Mel - it's great to read about someone as disheartened by the Jayhawks loss as I am/was. This oughta get you teary-eyed. Sing it with me, now, as we sway back and forth:

Far above, the golden valley
Glorious to view
Stands our noble alma mater
Towering toward the blue

Lift the chorus ever onward
Crimson and the blue
Hail to thee, our alma mater
Hail to old KU!3/19/2005 12:18:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|How much shit am I going to get at work on Monday? Our beloved but ever-choking Jayhawks lost in the first round of the NCAA tournament last night - to #14 seed Bucknell???? We actually didn't even watch the game. Lottie's was packed, so Doug and I decided to just watch it at home. Or so we thought. Living in the Big-10 friendly city that we do, the local CBS station chose to show the Michigan State game instead. So we actually only got to see the last 30 seconds. Total heartbreak, but I guess we're getting used to it. Some knitting content to post - here is a photo of the sweater and hat I knitted our neighbor's new baby Ben. The pattern for the sweater is from Debbie Bliss's Baby Knits For Beginners Book. I think it turned out pretty cute for my first sweater. Here it is being modeled by none other than Paddington... That's it for now...|W|P|111125672946442899|W|P|AAAARGH....|W|P|3/21/2005 02:00:00 PM|W|P|Blogger Grecian Gringo|W|P|mel- settle down mel. dont be so peeved. i know your asshawks lost to Buknell who were just manhandled by my sconies yesterday, but there is no need in posting incendiary comments on my blog. the commets was al in good fun. just make sure your team shakes the sand out of thier pussies next time r on the court.3/17/2005 08:00:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|Last night I went to Twisted Lizard to celebrate Claire's 30th birthday. We had many pitchers of margaritas, and I indulged in a few cigs as well. I gave Claire these Slang Flashcards, which are too funny, and the Ruffles scarf I finished this week. She seemed to like both a lot. She got some mad bling (see, the flashcards have come in handy) from her husband Dave and from her sisters. I didn't stay out too late, but I was dragging today. Drinking on a school night is not a good idea for me anymore. So March Madness is upon us, and as usual, Doug and I have KU picked to win it all in our respective pools. Hopefully the Jayhawks will come through this year. I've noticed that a few players are wearing these scary plastic face masks. Apparently, former Jayhawk Nick Collison was wearing one against the Bulls last night because he recently broke his nose. Whatever, they are creepy looking. Doug and I are huge nerds...we're both sitting here on the couch with our laptops.|W|P|111111278197163557|W|P|Not On A School Night|W|P|3/23/2005 02:36:00 PM|W|P|Blogger Jessica|W|P|Oh my gosh. Twisted Lizard. I moved to Seattle from Chicago over nine years ago and I used to go there all the time.3/11/2005 12:58:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|So, like many frequent "L" riders, I typically board the same car of the train every morning. I think it's time to change cars. Almost every morning lately there is a group of "friends" on my car who appear to have just gotten off of the late night shift, or have just scored some serious crack. They invariable are standing/sitting at various spots thoughout the car, conversing with each other like there are at a very loud concert, or in their own living room. I mean they are SCREAMING back and forth to one another, and their playful banter is typically laced with the colorful language that you don't normally expect to hear at 7:30 in the morning (not even on my man Stern, post-Sirius that is). Like me, most other riders seem visually annoyed...and probably too scared to say anything. Definitely not worth a proposed $2.50/way or more! Thank God for my ipod! On the knitting front, the plan is to finish the ruffles scarf for Claire's birthday, and to start some other stash-busting projects. Pictures to come...|W|P|111056841887724649|W|P|Oh the Blue Line...|W|P|3/06/2005 09:35:00 AM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|The Jeff Tweedy show was absolutely amazing! It was my first time seeing him solo - and it was just an incredible experience. He played quite a few old tunes, including some Uncle Tupelo songs, but also did a fair number of songs from YHF, Summer Teeth, and Mermaid Avenue. He played 3 or 4 "encores." But the big surprise was the end of the show, where the entire band (minus 1) came on stage! According to Bill, this was not done at the Friday show. They did "Hummingbird" and "Late Greats" from the new album. During the set, Bill repeatedly screamed out for the band to play The Band's "I Shall Be Released," and guess what their last song was??? Doug and Bill were in heaven. It's such a beautiful song in its own right...and Tweedy and Co. did it justice. One of the best shows I've been to. The crowd was generally good (and very happy), except for one annoying guy next to me who complained about me holding a cigarette too close to his head or something??? Um, newsflash, you are at the Vic, deal with it.|W|P|111012476727227097|W|P|Amazing...|W|P|3/04/2005 12:45:00 PM|W|P|Melissa|W|P|Today is Chicago's 168th birthday! Free ice cream for all! Since we're in a Chicago state of mind this morning, I finished Joe Meno's "Hairstyles of the Damned" the other day. Great book, and even though I didn't grow up in Chicago, I can definitely relate to the experience of attending a single-sex Catholic high school in the early 90's. I actually saw today that Gapers Block is starting its own book club, with this book being the first selection. I think I may head over to Borders today to get another Chicago-related novel. So excited...we are going to see this guy on Saturday night:

jefftweedy Originally uploaded by Meli K.
Thankfully, he added a second show at the Vic, which sold out in minutes. Luckily, Doug and Bill were speedy enough to nab tickets from the ticketmaster website. We had tickets to see Wilco in Kalamazoo last Saturday, but with our vacation and Doug's work traveling, we decided not to go. I did manage to sell the tickets on ebay...gotta love ebay! March is a busy birthday month...my friends Claire, Julie, and Liz all turn 30 this month, and my Aunt and mom's birthdays are next week. Gotsta gets shoppin'! I'm almost finished knitting the Ruffles scarf for Claire's gift (pattern from this book), and it's turning out really cute! My sister and I are off for some shopping around the neighborhood tomorrow...hopefully we'll get some good walking weather. There are a few new shops I want to check out along Damen and Division. Fun fun - cheers for now.|W|P|110996194682253357|W|P|Happy Birthday Chicago|W|P|