Thursday, July 12, 2012

Celebrating Julia Child

PBS is celebrating  Julia Child's 100th birthday in August.  One way to celebrate her legacy is to cook one of her recipes. They have a whole page of links to inspire the budding chef to pursue their own Julie and Julia homage. Additionally, her publisher, Alfred A. Knopf, launched the JC100, a hundred day celebration of Julia Child.

Think I may have to get cooking!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Return From the Three Year Nap

What a sad, sad, little excuse of a blog. My last post was three years and two days ago? Oy. Well, blame Facebook and Ravelry -- much of my time has been spent on those sites. Add to that, an incredible lack of motivation or inspiration. I think this will be my last ditch effort; if I can't stick to it this time, goodbye blog!

I stopped knitting about the same time I quit blogging. In February, I joined the HPKCHC (Harry Potter Knitting and Crochet House Cup) on Ravelry. My knitting productivity really shot up, because I had to start and finish at least one project per month. Big motivation for me, the knitter with a seven year old work-in-progress! But there is evidence of knitting!

A Pygmy Puff

Pygmy Puff


A Wonky Owl Bookmark

Felted Fortune Cookie
Fortune cookie?

A Shamrock Cloth
March homework

A Teabag Cozy

Granny Squares (Crochet)

A Scarf (Affectionately known as the Tide Pool Barf Scarf, because it looks like all the junk that washes up in tide pools!

What, pray tell, do I get for doing all of this knitting? Other than actually having finished products for a change? Well, I learned how to navigate around the site, and use all the bells and whistles that Ravelry provides. It's a lot of fun to play the game, and I get to interact with others, albeit online. Secretly though, most of us are motivated by the badges! I guess you would call them the "gold stars" of knitting.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

I Miss My Freezer

"No hope." Those were the repairman's final words yesterday, no hope. My refrigerator was proclaimed beyond repair. I should have known that this day would come when I had to take the halibut to my sister's house, so her freezer could babysit it for me. Yet, I held out hope that it could be fixed (after all, it was only eight years old).

Lucky for me, I have my bar fridge from school to hold me over until I buy a new one. The only drawback is that those things really don't freeze well. Man, do I miss ice cream!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Coffee Swap IV

How lucky am I?

Nothing makes me happier than getting a package in the mail. Having been sick with "the crud" for the past couple of weeks, I was doubly thrilled when my coffee swap package arrived on my doorstep last weekend. Totally made my day (& maybe even my week)!

Shanda really spoiled me! I received two packages of coffee; a Sumatra roast from Sisters Coffee Company and the Purr-fect blend from Flying Cats. The Flying Cats coffee made me chuckle... not only have I had each of the cats on the label, but it turns out that the coffee was roasted by Caffe Appassionato in Seattle. My mother loves their coffee and we used to go to their Fisherman's Terminal store (where they do the roasting) all the time. What a small world! I'm looking forward to trying both of the brews -- however, I think I'll have to wait until I'm well, so that I can appreciate them to the fullest! I also received Snickerdoodle scone mix, which was cleverly packaged in a to-go coffee cup (I think I will have to make those this weekend), Snickerdoodle almonds (not pictured because I already ate them :-D), and a mint chocolate bar from the Chocolate Crisis Center (funny, that's gone too!)

Shanda also sent me the cutest notions bag printed with Japanese kokeshi dolls, two bars of olive oil/coffee scented soap, and a sticker and pin from Blue Moon Fiber Arts.

Of course, I had to save the best for last -- the yarn is fantastic! Shanda went to the Madrona Fiber Arts Winter Retreat and picked up a beautiful yarn from Rainy Days & Wooly Dogs. Even though I am a Pacific Northwest girl by birth, I have to go Californian here: "Dude! It has cashmere in it!" The yarn is a very soft blend of superwash merino, nylon, and cashmere. It feel so nice (yes, I am a confirmed yarn petter). The picture does not do the color justice. The yarn is a beautiful progression of dark blues, teals, and forest green. It reminds me of Puget Sound, when the sun is shining on the water. This gorgeous yarn is definitely not destined to become a pair of socks -- it's just too pretty for that!

Thank you so much Shanda! You did a wonderful job!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Proof of Knitting

I am getting a slow start on tackling my list. But here! Proof! I knit! (Which would be a good thing, considering that this is supposed to be a knitting blog).

#16 Knit from the stash.

I am making a neckwarmer using this pattern and Artfibers Satori. I added more stitches to the pattern, as the yarn is thinner than called for.  Easy, relaxing knit. Now I have to find an interesting button.

I was just matched with my coffee swap partner and am happy to see that we have a lot in common! Really pleased that our yarn preferences seem to be the same -- right down to the colors! Hmmm, the ideas are percolating already...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Coffee Swap IV

I'm so happy to have made it into this swap for a third round!


1. Whole bean or ground? I prefer whole bean, please.
2. Fully-loaded or decaf?  Fully-loaded, of course!
3. Regular or flavored?  Regular -- I've never really gotten used to flavored coffees (traditional girl at heart, I guess).
4. How do you drink your coffee? With milk.
5. Favorite coffee ever? My favorites to date have come from Stumptown Coffee and the Pacific Bay Roasting Co. (however I am open to new things).
6. Are you fussy about your coffee or will any old bean do? I'm a little bit of a coffee snob, because there are great local roasters here on the west coast! I especially like Nicaraguan blends, Brazilian blends, and Italian roast (Pretty much anything from medium to strong).
7. Favorite treats to have with your coffee? Slightly sweet cookies or milk (not dark!) chocolate.
8. Anything else about your coffee preferences? You can find my other coffee swap questionnaires here.
9. Yarn/fiber you love? Alpaca, alpaca/silk blends, and bamboo. Pretty much anything natural that feels soft in my hands.
10. Yarn/fiber you hate? Acrylic, novelty, or eyelash yarns. 
11. What's on your needles? Rectangles and socks.
12. Favorite colors? Earthy colors: deep blues, greens, reds. I do not like khaki, tan, beige, or white. I'm far too pale to get away with wearing those colors!
13. Allergies? Nope.

14. Anything you really love, really don't like, or just need to get off your chest? it really clear how much I despise khaki? :o) Most of my old swap questionnaires are here; the list of questions for the last swap I participated in is on my "about me" page on Ravelry (I'm hapagirl).

Trivia for the Day - I started writing this blog because of a Knitters' Coffee Swap!

Looking forward to getting my match!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

43 things to do before I turn 44

I've been thinking a lot about lists lately. Looking back in my neglected journal, I noticed I had written about Crazy Aunt Purl's blog post about 101 Things in 1001 Days (here and here).  Basically, you make a list of things you want to do in 1001 days. It seemed like a good idea when I read about it; I mean it motivated me enough to think and write about it.  Yet I am finding that I am a creature of limited attention span; therefore I am going to follow Hula Seventy's lead and try to set forty-three goals to reach before my next birthday (309 days to go).

For better or worse, here it is:
  1. Get a new passport.
  2. Go home to Hawaii for a visit.
  3. Go on a trip outside of the U.S.
  4. Start to ski again.
  5. Continue on the road to fitness by going to the gym 3-5 times a week.
  6. Improve my yoga practice (get into a headstand without flopping over after 2 seconds).
  7. Look into yoga teacher training programs.
  8. Participate in a 5k.
  9. Be more charitable. It's not just about donating money; I want to be more charitable with my time, just by giving more of myself.
  10. Read more during my free time, instead of zoning out in front of the t.v.
  11. Start by reading So Many Books, So Little Time (the story of my life!)
  12. There are about 49 weeks left in the year. Make a list of 49 books that I want to read this year, and try to read them all.
  13. Start using the multitude of cookbooks in my possession and cook/bake something new each week (using the cookbooks, of course).
  14. Write every day, even if it's just a lousy paragraph (Hmm, blogging about the stuff on this list would be a start).
  15. Reduce clutter in my life.
  16. Knit from the yarn stash / reduce the stash!
  17. Finish knitting that @#$* Clapotis!
  18. Knit something that is not a rectangle.
  19. Buy a walking foot for the sewing machine.
  20. Finish the sampler quilt.
  21. Get the house painted.
  22. Go out to listen to music more.
  23. Explore the Bay Area on mini-road trips.
  24. Have a meal at Chez Panisse (it's so close, for goodness sakes!)
  25. Go see the butterflies hibernating in Pacific Grove.
  26. Go to Tahoe or Yosemite.
  27. Learn how to scale a rock wall.
  28. Spend a night by the sea.
  29. Get over my fear of bathing suits (trying them on, not using them!), so I can go swimming again.
  30. Get over another fear and go on a date (bleah!)
  31. Study Italian more and speak more often.
  32. Improve my spoken Portuguese.
  33. Remember that it's good to be pampered once in a while--use those gift certificates and get a pedicure.
  34. Find more films on Netflix to help with #31 & #32. Watch La Dolce Vita and Bread and Tulips.
  35. Watch two movies (DVD) a week.
  36. Go to the movie theater more often and see something other than a "kid" movie.
  37. Get the PC fixed.
  38. Go see a musical or a ballet.
  39. Start using the grill again.
  40. Have people over more often. Begin by doing #15, and you won't freak so much.
  41. Be more flexible in body, mind, and spirit.
  42. Do something about the garden.
  43. Sing like nobody's listening, dance like nobody's  watching, LIVE more, and love more.
Well, it's out there -- guess I'll have to start trying to accomplish some of it!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Blue Sky Swap

BSA Swap 2
Originally uploaded by Hapagirl Knits.
I've gotten so used to posting on Ravelry that I neglected to post about the Blue Sky Alpaca swap over here. My secret swapper was Trumom, who also lives here in the Bay Area. When I received my package, I found out that she had requested to be my swap partner! We're both half-Asian and teachers, so we do have a couple of things in common.

I was SO SPOILED ROTTEN, it's not even funny!

She sent me a wonderful project bag in a Japanese print, three packets of Soak wool wash, and the sock blocker
key chain that I had been coveting. She also sent me Japanese goodies! Japanese snack food, a very pretty fan, some chopsticks with a kitty on them (maneki neko-good luck cat), some bath salts (I think that’s what they are), and a daruma. I think Trumom was stalking me in the bento group, because she also sent along some supplies to jazz up my bento lunch! No more boring triangular rice balls for me; I’ll be pulling stars, hearts, and bears out of my lunch box :-D All this, and I haven't even mentioned the YARN yet! Trumom gifted me with four skeins of Blue Sky baby alpaca; two skeins of an amazing red and two of a pretty plum/eggplant color. She also introduced me to the magic of Malabrigo, with the gift of a skein in a beautiful blue.

I am still so very grateful for the thought and care that went into this package. Thanks again,

Another Attempted Return to Blogging

Poor sad, neglected, little blog. I've fallen under the spell of a social networking site (that shall remain nameless) and spend far too much time playing with old friends over there. It seems that every time I think about updating this site, I go and play over there instead. Coffeeswap IV has opened up (although it closes today), so I'm back to blogging, in the hopes that I will be among the swappers.

School has been keeping me busy, as usual. I've also been spending many hours trying to finally get myself fit. This, of course, means that I haven't been making enough time for knitting. :- ( 
I picked up the needles again before Christmas to make a scarf for a colleague who has been helping me with a student. Taking breaks from knitting really makes you remember how enjoyable it can be! Since then, I've started two more projects -- and I will blog about them! 

Monday, September 15, 2008


Whew! Hectic few weeks full of assessing kids, trying to appear professional during back to school night, and keeping my head above water. Things are starting to settle down and I'm getting back into the rhythm of things. I am firmly convinced that I am a very lucky person, as it appears that I have another good group of kids this year. They may not be the highest academically, but they are cute and they get along with each other. When my class has those two components, the learning will happen. Kind of like a teacher's Field of Dreams -- "if there is kindness, they will learn." I'll just keep my fingers crossed and try to channel Pollyanna.

Meanwhile, the mid-life crisis continues to push me towards self-improvement. This time it's Italian lessons. I forgot how much I hated to conjugate verbs. If only the mid-life crisis manifested itself as an Italian sports car... oh wait, I forgot, I'm a teacher and that's a pipe dream...