Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Finish What You Start

One of the reasons I like blogging is because it pushes me to do things.  To try things, to make things. Since I've started blogging, I've done so many new things - and more importantly - finished them! That's definitely something I enjoy. And there's nothing so unsatisfying than never getting to see a blogger's finished product! I think without the blog I'd also be much more prone to sitting around watching anime/tv and doing nothing.    Of course, there is a line between productive and obsessive.  But as long as the process of making things with Sak still involves laughter and ridiculous victory dances, I think we're okay. Hopefully.

That said and all, I have an unhealthy amount of half-finished projects lying about the house. Come on magic blog, help me finish them!
Cross-stitch Afro Gunsou.  Been sitting around for three years now.
Backside of a very fun crochet project.  Been working on for two years now
A bit over 1/14th of the way done! Yaay, rug!
An attempt at actual, normal, clothes for once.
This would be faster if I didn't have to buy one board of balsa wood at a time (40% off coupons *sigh*).
More sushi pillows. 
Do you have a lot of unfinished projects lying around too?

Friday, February 24, 2012

DIY Totoro Felty

And pattern! I've uploaded it to Google Docs here, if you'd like!

Just cut out the pattern...
And sew all the "face" pieces onto one of the grey body pieces using straight stitch or back stitch.  Then add the back grey body piece and blanket stitch it all together!
Hello, my neighbor!
By the way, has anyone gone to see the new Ghibli movie, "Secret World of Arrietty" yet?  It's based off The Borrowers! I was waiting for my sis to come up so we could go see it, but I don't know if I can hold out. :)

Now I just need to figure out what to stick this forest spirit on.  He could be another headband, or a finger puppet, or an applique on something else altogether!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


This past weekend we went down to Monterey for my grandfather's 90th birthday. Ninety! That's an amazing number.
It was also my grandparent's 59th wedding anniversary. Our family is so very blessed to have such a good example of loving, faithful marriage. I think we all hope we're blessed with Gung Gung's good aging genes too! Ha!

Anyway, like all our family parties, the food was amazing and in no short supply.  All the family members brought something to the table, and it was all so tasty! Sak and I brought shrimp spring rolls from CD Bakery in San Jose.

And just as formidable was the dessert table! My aunt made her amazing famous cookies again (chocolate dipped almond was my favorite). Mmm.

Stuffed dates! I couldn't eat them though because they reminded me of that scene with the monkey in Indiana Jones.  Sad.
We sang some of my grandparent's favorite hymns...
And listened to some of their favorite Bible passages..
And then us grandkids did this little acrostic thing that Gung Gung always had us do when we were younger.  Spell something out letter by letter, with a word and a verse to go with each letter! This time we spelled out their names, with verses that reminded us of them.  We always grumble about having to read things aloud in front of everyone, but it is a pretty interesting "tradition".
I had to dig this picture out to prove it - we've been doing these a long time!
Actually I don't look all that different (middle with the weird collar). But I was taller than my bro (to the right) at the time!
Anyway, 90 and 59 are just amazing numbers for a birthday and anniversary, respectively!  I hope they have many more!

(photos mostly by penga-mom)

Monday, February 20, 2012

DIY Throw Pillow Cover

In a small effort to reduce the amount of hoarded fabric lying about the house, I picked up two couch pillows from Ross.  Typically I find that buying pillows from Ross is cheaper than buying pillow-forms from the craft store.

Some pretty sakura fabric from Daiso to the right:

After measuring one of the pillows (18" x18"), I cut out three pieces of fabric, one 19" x 19", and two 19" x 12".
Sew up any troublesome unruly edges...
And then place all three pieces together in a sandwich (with right fabric sides facing each other). The square piece on the bottom, followed by the two rectangles.  The rectangles should overlap. Pin the entire square in place.
Three layers in the middle!
Last easy step - sew around the entire square! Then reverse - one pillowcase!

The moment of truth - stick the pillow in to see if it fits!
And the back:
I love pocket-type pillow cases..no itchy scratchy zippers to get in the way! And because there was some overlap with the two rectangle fabric panels, the whole pillow is still completely covered.
Two pillows later..
Yeah, that blue throw blanket might have to go. At least these new pillow covers will match our rug..eventually. Haha!
Yay! Pillows!

How many pillows are you supposed to have on a couch anyway? I kind of want to make more. How many pillows do you have on your couch?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

DIY Felt Bow

Some of you may have noticed that the V-Day Onion came with a little hair accessory - a felt bow! (It's for you, by the way - onions don't really need hair clips.)

I learned to make them with this tutorial, though I switched up the measurements a bit for my own.  

First, a strip of felt.  I used cheap craft felt, in a 9" x 1" strip.
Next, find the middle of your strip, and then fold it back onto itself into a sandwich.
It's important to keep both sides as even as possible!  Pin down the edges once you even everything out.
Now, place a dot of glue on each flap and press it down into the middle.
Once the middle is glued in place, cut a small 1/2" strip of felt and place it underneath the middle.
Glue each side of the 1/2" strip to the center of the main strip.  This will create the middle of the bow!
With everything glued down, you can remove the pins.
And flip it over!
Cute! But it's even cuter if you cut little notches to the ends of the bow.
Lastly, I hand-sewed (rather horribly, I might add - sewing through glue is tough!) a snap hair clip to the back.

So cute!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine's Chocolate (Attempt 2)

(Here for Valentine's Chocolate Attempt 1)

In my quest to make Sak some Valentine's chocolate, I picked up some silicone baking cups from Daiso.  I think they are meant for small cupcakes or something, but they looked like a peanut butter cup to me.
Like last time, I set up a make-shift double boiler and melted my chocolate chips.  Thanks to all your wonderful comments and suggestions, I think it would have been better had I shaved a bar of baking choco or something instead of chips, but I had to use up what I already had. :)

This time I lightly greased the metal heart tin with veggie oil.

Also I decided to get "creative" and crushed up some rice Chex to put inside some of the chocolates.

And I melted down some white chocolate chips I had around too.  White chocolate did not melt nearly as well as the dark chocolate.  Maybe because it's not really chocolate?
Anyway, I filled up all the cups and let it all cool.

But alas! Once again the chocolate would not come out of the metal heart mold.  So I stuck it in the freezer.  And tah-dah!
Yeah..it worked.  But I think I left it in the freezer TOO long (over 30 min), because one of them cracked when I whacked the tin on the table to dislodge them.

(The silicone molds were like a dream though, absolutely no sticking, and easy to clean too!)

But otherwise, not bad!
The mixed white-dark choco ones were the tastiest!
Sak approved.  He especially liked the ones with crunchy rice Chex inside.

They aren't the cutest chocolates ever, but I did try hard to make these honmei chocos for my husband, and that's what counts!

White Day is coming up faster than you think, Sak.

Did you get something sweet for V-Day?