Sunday, November 22, 2020

Monday music and miscellany

in which our plucky heroine notices rising winds...

It has been a rough week. Two friends passed away, and my very favoritest canine pal Toshi (who lives up with the Mud Bay folks) may be following them across the Rainbow Bridge soon. Somehow, rather than these deaths feeling like an anomaly, in the way the few previous ones in the last few years have seemed, I sense a hinge in my arc, and that now this is the part of the story where my cohort starts leaving faster and faster. The image in mind is the old animated cartoon where the pages on the calendar start being blown off faster and faster by a rising wind

Two days ago the roof above my workroom began leaking, and it is unclear what is causing the problem. Figuring out what to do and how best to deal with the problem, difficult in the best of times, is made infinitely more complicated by the gorram pandemic. Still, I am still here, still above ground, still reasonably healthy. My closest circle of family and friends remains intact, at least for now.

beauty in the time of isolation - day 254:

all the rain has brought mushooms of various kinds to the yard


There was adventure in cookery on Saturday - I took the "homemade pot stickers" class as part of the local online SCA event. Duchess Hlutwige was sharing her recipes, tips, and secrets for making them, and even though I have made my own previously, I learned a number of new-to-me details that will make a big difference. Her DIY wrappers worked out much better than the recipe I found online and attempted; these worked out really well. And I much prefer her "steam the napa cabbage" to soften it beforehand to the salt method I was using. There are now several containers full in the freezer, waiting for those nights when a readymade dinner will be a treat or a necessity.

I made more filling than the amount of dough matched up with, so tonight I attempted "scotch eggs" baked in the oven, as the difference between sausage and pot sticker filling is primarily one of vegetable content. The taste and texture was good, but there was what seemed to be some shrinkage of the meat layer possibly also because of the cabbage/scallion/cilantro content, and so the HB eggs rather burst out in a not very attractive way. Still, I am most unlikely to be going to a pub for pub-grub, but scotch eggs are a nice high protein occasional treat. I'll try again at some point with actual sausage and see if it makes a difference.

~ 100 day creativity challenge - day 72 ~
Last week I spent two days working on a sample enamel for a potential project, to find out if it was possible to get that level of complexity in a piece only a bit more than an inch tall. It is, but it was quite challenging.

November SMART goals (x=extra)
1 five new dishtowels
restring beads
recycle bin
2 new apron
3 another new apron
x -
4 two floral dishtowels
x x
5 xx x
6 x x x
7 x x x
8 x x x
9 x x x
10 x x x
11 x x x
12 x x x
13 x x x
14 x x x
15 x x x

today's gratitude - I returned this week to Stitcher's Guild, where I formerly spent a LOT of time. It had occurred to me that, in this time of plague, my simply dropping out could have seemed something much more dire than mere lack of sew-jo mojo. In fact it felt rather good to return there, as it is once again SWAP planning time, and while I do not intend to sew eleven garments, since I certainly do not need that many more, SWAP season is also a segment of my year-wheel. I also am back in touch with my online-to-IRL friend Claire, and we are going to do a wee small sewalong together. I actually purchased a pattern, a different style of pinafore, with some interesting seamlines and a "workwear" aesthetic; Claire had found the pattern online and wanted to try it. 


  1. I've been looking for your blog posts, so sorry to hear that you've had several losses recently. Would it be possible to share the wrapper recipe, as I have not found one I like and have potstickers on my list for make-ahead foods.

    1. The wrapper recipe was really very simple: 2 cups all purpose flour,mix in 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Boil water, then add 3/4 cup of boiling water to the flour, stir it in immediately (I used a wooden spoon. It will become a rough dough, keep stirring until it clumps together... as soon as you can (it will be hot, but will gradually cool down), knead it until it is mostly smooth and resilient. Then put it aside to relax for a while either under plastic, or a slightly damp teatowel.

      After about 10 to 30 min, form the dough into a long cylinder, and cut into 24 chunks (Cut first in half(2 pcs), then each half into thirds(6pcs), then each third in half(12 pcs) and then those pieces in half again(24pcs) keep the pieces covered with the damp cloth so they do not dry out.

      one at a time, form each small round into a largeish (about 4 to4 1/2 ") flat circle, flour the surface you are rolling them out on so they do not stick to it... I made sure that there was enough flour, and that when I set them down after rolling out that there was a film of flour on their surfaces so they did not stick together... keep the rolled out ones also under the slightly damp tea towel, it is a balance between not letting them dry out, and not too damp so they get sticky.

    2. You are a dear! I hope you have a lovely holiday this week.

  2. I'm so sorry for your losses. Grieving is a painful process as we move through life but how grateful we can be for having known wonderful people.

    Absolutely delicious potstickers can be made with the recipe in THE ETHNIC VEGETARIAN KITCHEN by Shanta Nimbark Sacharoff. The book was copyrighted in 1984 so is probably available from used book stores. The potsticker filling is delicious all by itself, too. I've enjoyed all the recipes I've tried from this book.

    1. thank you for your condolences, and for your cookbook recommendation