After some thought and time to locate supplies, I was able to satisfactorily hang the mandala on my living room wall, behind my piano. I used a simple curtain rod and some metal rings in every other space of the border. I think I may add rings to the rest of the open spaces, to distribute the weight a bit more. I’m a little concerned the piece might stretch, over time. At some point, I will consider using it as a table covering, so I’d like to keep the border intact.
That space on my wall had been empty for some time – I think it is a perfect fit there, for now.
After finishing the mandala, my mornings opened up for a new craft. I finished one quick shawl last week, and had so much fun working with lace-weight yarn, that I raided my yarn stash for more and started a super-airy shawl pattern called Key West Coral, by Kristin Omdahl.
The yarn I’m using is a superfine Australian merino wool from the wonderful Morris & Sons flagship store in Sydney, Australia. I bought a couple of balls of this squishy, 2-ply yarn a couple of years ago when I was in Sydney, and hadn’t found a purpose for it, until now.
The shawl pattern is going relatively fast, but not as much as the previous one I made. I’m using a 4.25mm hook with this tiny yarn, so the shawl has a beautifully gossamer texture. If this one comes out well, I might make another in hot pink.
Apart from keeping up with my WIPs, I’m trying to check off a list of home improvements, as well as get back to more cooking at home instead of eating out. That includes making simple, healthy biscuits for my dog, using peanut butter, oats, and soy milk. The dough is really sticky at first and fun to work with – I feel like a kid making mud pies when I make these, and my dog loves them.
I cut the biscuits into shapes for my own amusement, using some whimsical cookie cutters that I picked up in Tokyo in February. The shop I found them in has at least 1,000 types of cookie cutters! I forgot the name of the shop, but it is in Kappabashi-dori (Kitchen Street), so if you are a baker and are in Tokyo, I recommend exploring that area.
I’ll share with you my simple recipe for dog treats:
1 1/2 cup flour + more for rolling out the biscuits
1/4 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup soy milk
3/4 cup peanut butter
1 Tablespoon honey
Heat oven to 350 F. Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Blend wet ingredients and add to dry, mixing with the hands (the dough will be sticky!) Add a little more flour to make the dough more elastic. Mix and knead until fully incorporated. Cut dough in half. Roll out each half to about 1/4″ and cut with cookie cutters. Place treats on an ungreased cookie sheet, and bake for about 15 minutes, or until slightly golden and crispy (check during baking, in case they begin to burn). Cool completely. Store in a dry place. (Makes at least 3 dozen biscuits, depending upon size.)
That’s it for today! I’ll write again in a few days about my upcoming trip to Andong, where I’ll visit the Hahoe Folk Village, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Stay safe and see you again soon.