My Makes · My Neighborhood

Early Spring bloom + craft update

Under the wire with my first post in a month, and the last and only post for March! While on vacation in January, I predicted I’d have a rough time of it in March, as I have an extraordinarily heavy load at work this semester. Not to worry – I find time to play whenever possible, and sometimes, it has to be on my walk to or from work.

The bloom of Spring is upon us. I’ve noticed that blossom prime-time in my area is about a week earlier than I remember from ten years ago – it’s now in the last week of March, instead of the first week of April. The Cherry Blossom Festival has returned to campus after a Covid hiatus, and it is now a week earlier, too. Lilacs are also in full bloom, and I will pilfer my yearly bunch of fragrant beauties this week, if I can find a feasible bush somewhere near home.

The renewed focus on flora has the Korean moms and grandmas out hunting for the tenderest of mugwort (ssuk 쑥) shoots, which are used in making seasonal dishes, tea, and traditional medicine. I always love seeing the ladies out picking this time of year, and I never quite know where I’ll see them gather again, as it depends where the best shoots come up. It could be out in the middle of a meadow, on a roadside, or even along the path leading to my office, which I saw on Thursday. I posted about mugwort back in April 2020.

Meanwhile, the millipede I’ve been working on for weeks is finally beginning to look like a real bug (but muuuch bigger, and kaleidoscopic). There are days when I only have time to crochet two feet, but it gets me that much closer to sharing. It is not my longest-running project (I think that distinction goes to my Orléans blanket , which was finally tied up after almost two years), but it is definitely the most ambitious amigurumi figure I’ve made. Confession: this WIP is taking up my entire coffee table now, and I have no idea where I’m going to stash this bug when he’s finished!

The blue Milk Yarn pictured is exclusively for the millipede’s feet. It’s a 5-ply acrylic yarn that I discovered on Coupang, of all places (an online shopping site in Korea). It might become a mainstay for toy making, as it’s soft, resists splitting, has a huge number of bright colors, and it’s only about 2-3 bucks for 50 grams.

April should be a sweeter time for my craft blog, as I’ll have more time during the mid-term to catch up on Japan and all the other odds-and-ends that I want to share. That includes a loose plan for my July trip to California, where I hope to play tourist a bit more than I did last summer. Until next post, stay well!

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