all we are saying…


I was work­ing on a cus­tom order (which I will share with you very soon! :D) and it involves mak­ing a set of peas in a pod. It was a small part of a rather exten­sive project and I still had a lot more to do besides the peas, so I did­n’t real­ly want to make the indi­vid­ual peas and stuff them. So I thought of using the pop­corn stitch, and here’s what I did…

(Here’s a great video about how to make the cro­chet pop­corn stitch just in case you want to get an idea of what it’s like.)

I used:
A bit of worsted weight yarn in two dif­fer­ent shades of green
3.5mm cro­chet hook
Black sewing thread
Sewing needle
Yarn needle

For the peas:

The first pea: ch 4, 4 dc in 4th st from hook.
Then I did what I like to call the pop­corn maneu­ver:  drop loop from hook, insert hook from front to back between the begin­ning ch and first dc, rein­sert hook into dropped loop, yo, pull through loop and space between begin­ning ch and first dc, ch 1.


yo and pull through loop on hook and space between beg. ch and first dc to make pop­corn stitch.

The sec­ond pea: Repeat instruc­tion for the first pea.


sec­ond pea before the pop­corn maneuver!

You can make as many peas as you wish, repeat­ing the instruc­tion for the first pea, and fas­ten­ing off after the last pea. I made three.


Next, I embroi­dered faces onto the peas with dou­bled black sewing thread, and then stuffed them slight­ly with some yarn-ends.

For the pod:

(The stitch count is for a pod with 3 peas. If there are more peas I would just eye-ball it and add more stitch­es to the begin­ning ch to fit.)

Row 1: ch 16, sc in 2nd st from hook, sc in each ch across.

Row 2: ch 1, 1 sc in each st across.

Rows 3–7: repeat Row 2.

Leave a 12″ tail, fas­ten off.

Fold pod in half length-wise. Using the 12″ tail and yarn nee­dle, sew one end togeth­er, like so…

Then, place the string of peas inside the pod, and sew through the sides of the pod and the peas, zig-zag­ging across the length of the pod to the oth­er end, like so…

ouch! >_<

Final­ly, sew the oth­er end togeth­er, like so…

And here you have it, peas in a pod! :D

These peas think that they’ll make a great fridge mag­net, or a pin, or an orna­ment, or a zip­per pull, or a cell­phone charm, remind­ing you to give peace a chance in this brand new year.

But if you need some ideas about how you can give peas a chance, here’s a fab­u­lous mushy peas recipe — it’s my favourite way to eat peas! :D

Have a love­ly evening and a won­der­ful Friday!


more favourite things this week!

It’s going to be a cold cou­ple of days in the neigh­bour­hood! A dear friend of mine loves to bike around the city, and even in the win­ter she tries to bike as much as she can. She told me that long arm-warm­ers are bik­ers’ best friends (beside their bikes) because they can’t real­ly wear bulky jack­ets as they bike. So this instructable reminds me of my friend. And I thought if you like to bike (or just be styl­ish) in late fall / win­ter / ear­ly spring you might like this idea too!

By Tarzioo on Instructa­bles (via Craftzine).


And for those cold morn­ings — what about some warm toasts with home­made but­ter? I can­not believe how easy (and fun!) it is to make but­ter! It’s real­ly sim­i­lar to mak­ing ice cream in a can, I think.

From Maize in Mon­tana.


Mike intro­duced me to a new favourite band this week called Sleep­ing at Last. They put out a new EP every month with gor­geous, glo­ri­ous water­colour album cov­ers (and, of course, amaz­ing music — I espe­cial­ly love their poet­ic lyrics — but I must admit that I’m more drawn to the water­colours…). Check out their lat­est cover!



Isn’t that just amaz­ing? I am par­tic­u­lar­ly in love with the Jan­u­ary cov­er because of all the rich shades of blue and the touch­es of grey. My heart just melts.

And so I did more inves­ti­gat­ing and found out the art was done by Kansas artist Geoff Ben­z­ing. I spent hours in his water­colour gallery; the night cityscapes are my favourite.

And speak­ing of music, one of my goals this year is to learn to play the ukulele. I don’t know when I’ll get one, but I heard it’s not ter­ri­bly dif­fi­cult to learn (and I do know a bit of gui­tar… like, the C chord). I think my friends’ kids and the kids at church will love it if I can play songs for them to sing and dance to.

See? Elvis played the ukulele.


Hope you’ve had a great start to the week! Hap­py Wednesday!

I yam what I yam

I pre­fer call­ing sweet pota­toes yam :)

Any­way, attempt­ing to make yam sweet soup for a late night snack. It’s a Chi­nese dessert made with yam, rock sug­ar and gin­ger. I had a gen­er­al idea about how to make it but want­ed to know how much sug­ar to use. I found a Chi­nese recipe that was pret­ty straight­for­ward, but it just said “some rock sug­ar” in the ingre­di­ent list.

It reminds me of my grand­moth­er, when we asked her for the recipe of her famous “tea fruit” (a Hak­ka snack in the form of rice flour pat­ties) and how much rice flour she used, she said, “oh, just a small bowl.”

I lat­er found an Eng­lish ver­sion of the yam sweet soup recipe in case any­one’s inter­est­ed :D

My yam sweet soup turned out a tad too sweet. I did­n’t have rock sug­ar, so I just poured in a bunch of brown sug­ar. I would also like to put in more gin­ger next time. But it was a good late night snack :D

Hap­py Sunday!

favourite things Friday!

A favourite-things post is long over­due — I’ve been accu­mu­lat­ing so many neat ideas and blog posts for the past month my book­mark fold­er is going to burst! :P

My favourite of the favourites is the acorn owl ♥

I love any craft involv­ing acorns. Tuto­r­i­al from Bloe­sem Kids.


A love­ly, love­ly way to incor­po­rate chil­dren’s art into wall-hang­ings, orna­ments and charms — makes great gifts for the par­ents, I think! And I think any kid would be proud to col­lab­o­rate in the project (I would, if I were a kid). It also involves used gift-wrap! :D Going to be on the look­out for art­work next time I vis­it my friends and their children.

Tuto­r­i­al from Michele Made Me.


That’s right. One does­n’t have to stop mak­ing orna­ments just because the tree is gone. They look nice hang­ing by the win­dow or off the desk lamp. Not the over­ly Christmas‑y ones, of course. But the mem­o­rable ones, like these cute pho­to ornaments.

Tuto­r­i­al on Pho­to­jo­jo.


Look­ing for a new desk cal­en­dar for the new year? A Yeti for hire! All you need is some scis­sors, glue, and 10 min­utes of crafty time. Who would­n’t want a Yeti on their desks, remind­ing you that it’s Fri­day?

Free down­load at Curios­i­ty Cal­en­dar of the Month (via How About Orange).


No tuto­r­i­al for these adorable takoy­ai; you can only hug them with your eyes.

I vote it the most bril­liant amigu­ru­mi food of the year :D Spot­ted on Moon’s Cre­ations.


More amigu­ru­mi Japan­ese food — cro­cheted nat­to!

From 203gow (via Craftzine).


Although I’m par­tial to cro­chet, I would most def­i­nite­ly attempt this knit tea light hold­er (only stock­inette stitch required!). I love that it can be arranged in a line or in circle.

Free pat­tern from Duo Fiber­works.


And now we move on to sewing! Shirt recon­struc­tion using a large flan­nel shirt that I imag­ine would be rather easy to find at any thrift store. Or clos­et. And it does­n’t nec­es­sar­i­ly have to be plaid. I just real­ly like the col­lar of this shirt, and the way the sleeves are recon­struct­ed. Hmm. Maybe it’s time for a trip to the thrift store.

How-to on Craftzine.


And last but not least, an inter­ac­tive game fea­tur­ing plush dumplings!! :D How awe­some is that? It’s a mem­o­ry game that requires one to serve up dif­fer­ent types of dumplings in a spe­cif­ic sequence. Watch the game in action!

Dumpling Dash by Jayne Vidheecharoen.


Oh and I almost for­got! We saw Fan­tas­tic Mr. Fox over the new years. It’s a great movie in itself, but what makes it so much more awe­some is that the chef rab­bit is voiced by and mod­eled after Mario Batali, my favourite Iron Chef! With the orange neck­tie and crocs!

He also shared his recipe for Mrs.Bean’s Famous Nut­meg Gin­ger Apple Snaps that were in the movie! :D

Have a sweet Fri­day every­one! :D






in progress…

Pile of yarn ends and a failed orange slice and mul­ti­ple nee­dles pulling threads… yes, I’ve been work­ing on a rather exten­sive cus­tom order for the past few days, and I hope to show you the fin­ished pieces soon! :D


After hav­ing some deli­cious avo­ca­do and toma­to sal­ad, attempt­ing to grow an avo­ca­do plant. I came across a book called Don’t Throw It, Grow It some time last year and I’ve been want­i­ng to grow an avo­ca­do plant ever since. There are tons of instruc­tion online but this one came with a friend­ly video so I fol­lowed it. And now it looks like an alien egg sit­ting on a hatch­ing cham­ber soak­ing in some bub­bling, radioac­tive liq­uid. I hope it sprouts. I’ll keep you posted!


Häkeln! Been attempt­ing a cro­chet pat­tern in Ger­man. It’s for a hat. I real­ly liked the look of the hat, and no lan­guage bar­ri­er was going to keep me from mak­ing this hat. It was actu­al­ly a real­ly straight­for­ward pat­tern. I was par­tic­u­lar­ly impressed with Google Trans­late — it appears to know cro­chet short­hands! This list from Owlishy for cro­chet and knit­ting terms in dif­fer­ent lan­guages also helped a lot. And for the first time I’m using some good qual­i­ty cot­ton by Patons called Grace, in “clay”, because I had a 40% off coupon from Michaels. I real­ize that good qual­i­ty yarn does­n’t split as much as its inex­pen­sive acrylic coun­ter­parts and is there­fore a lot nicer to cro­chet with.


And then there are also oth­er things in progress. More life-deci­sions type things. I feel like “in progress” has been one of the defin­ing fea­tures of my life since kinder­garten. Always work­ing toward the end of a long process and the res­o­lu­tion. A sense of set­tle­ment. Sta­bil­i­ty. But what if there is no such thing as set­tle­ment, and life is meant to be always in progress, in motion? Or what if I’m just nev­er sat­is­fied, and when I can choose to set­tle on some­thing I instead choose to move on to some­thing else before giv­ing the for­mer a fair chance?

This is where I go in circles.

And I think about all the things that I do, the things that I make, the stuff that I write on here, whether it means any­thing. I think about the paths I’ve cho­sen, all the time I spent in dif­fer­ent class­rooms, and I lay awake at night ter­ri­fied that I’m going to waste my life away.

But in the very cen­tre of the cir­cles there is faith, which holds that none of the work done in progress would be wast­ed, told to me through the words of my moth­er. And I can only hold on to that and move forward.

Today is…

Nation­al Bird Day!
(Accord­ing to the Hoops & Yoyo Cal­en­dar)

Per­fect day for anoth­er Sight­ings episode from Chuck & Robin! :D

Just an excuse to show you my new favourite pins and orna­ment that my par­ents-in-law got from Guatemala :D

And also an excuse to make up some sil­ly sto­ries to make the inner-child hap­py, when the sun sets at 4pm on a cold win­ter day.

I lat­er found out that the bird pins are not only colour­ful, they’re also machine-wash­able. I for­got to take them off my t‑shirt before putting them into the wash­er, and they came out per­fect­ly intact, the paint did­n’t even chip one bit. They are indeed amazing.

I also thought it might be fun to sign up for Twit­ter on Nation­al Bird Day. But I think I’ll pass for now. I post enough updates here and on Face­book :P

Have a blessed Wednesday!


Be like the bird that, pass­ing on her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, know­ing that she hath wings.
— Vic­tor Hugo




Also known as hazel­nut. But I pre­fer to call it fil­bert. It’s one of my favourite words. And if I have a cat I would name him/her Filbert.

Any­way, we had lots of fil­berts around at Christ­mas time…


And I was giv­en this real­ly nice felt­ing wool as a Christ­mas gift, in beau­ti­ful autumn tones, from this store called Heav­en is Hand­made (it’s true!). It’s so very soft… I also received anoth­er bun­dle of wool in blue/white tones. I have a plan for it; I’ll show you later :)

Work­ing with felt­ing wool is a lux­u­ry for me because wool tends to be more expen­sive, and I try to keep a tight bud­get for my craft­ing habits, so I’m rather thank­ful for the gift!


So while we wait­ed for the count­down on new year’s eve I thought I would try nee­dle-felt­ing with this wool, and I thought the brown tones would make a good fil­bert. And so Fil­bert mate­ri­al­ized in the midst of fire­works and glass­es of gin­ger ale. Today he’s hav­ing some down time on the win­dowsill, enjoy­ing a bit of sun. He’s about the same size as a typ­i­cal filbert.


I think I’m going to try mak­ing some ani­mals next. More specif­i­cal­ly, a cat. A cat named Filbert.

I once took out this book from the library and it has such love­ly pho­tog­ra­phy and excel­lent instruc­tions for mak­ing real­is­tic-look­ing felt­ed pets. So a trip to the library is in order!


Hap­py Tues­day! :D

it’s 2011!

Hap­py new year! :D

The first day of 2011 is unusu­al­ly mild. We woke up to a thick veil of fog out­side our win­dow. We went out to our bal­cony and it was like step­ping into a cloud. It felt strange­ly serene.





I joined the Zumi group on Flickr and saw lots of cool black and white pic­tures. I thought I don’t use the black and white mode quite enough and so here’s a B&W pic­ture of the fog­gy neighbourhood.



And when we went back inside for break­fast I heard the bird­s chirp­ing, which remind­ed me of this quote I read on Duo Fiber­works:

“I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December
A mag­i­cal thing
And sweet to remember.

‘We are near­er to Spring
Than we were in September,’
I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December.”

- Oliv­er Her­ford, I Heard a Bird Sing


Wish­ing every­one a healthy and won­der­ful 2011!