Friday, January 21, 2011

Snow Storm in Winter Wonderland

It's not so bad so far in this winter. We have lots of snow, but usually snowdays are not as cold as any other days. You just need to have extra attention on the road and lots of shoveling the snow on your driveway and you get to make a snowman!
Today, store my work was really slow because of snow storm and we closed a store at 3pm. I got to home an hour earlier and changed my clothes to PJs, then enjoyed a quiet night staying inside the house. Actually I was planning a dinner with friends, but we changed the date.
These photos are not from today's, but as you can see everywhere you see it's covered with snow. I'm from Miyazaki, southern part of Japan and never imagined my life in that much of snow. Now I'm here in winter wonderland!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fun With Origami


Origami Crane Ornament, originally uploaded by licca-kikuchi.

Besides my craft business I work in a kids department at a bookstore. I used to be a teacher in Japan, so I love kids. At my work, we sometime have schools and give them a tour in a store and do craft with them. Last few days, group of kids from grade 2 came in a store and I showed them how to make easy origami puppet and puppy. They got really excited and I was so happy to share a part of my culture.

Original reason why I came to Canada was to show Canadian about Japanese culture and language and also learn English from them. I went Saint John High School and Islandview School as a school intern for a year in 2004 and showed them origami, calligraphy, abacus, and so on. I'm still looking for some oppotunities, so if your school, or class, group is interested in Japanese culture, lauguage, let me know.

Granny Square Cushion Cover

Finally it started to feel like real winter. One morning I felt inside of my nose got frozen and it kept my body temperture low as I was breathing. I guess we supposed to have 30cm of snow tomorrow. My doggy, Chester loves to play in the snow, but yesterday I found that something's wrong with his nose. Did he get a cold or infection or maybe allegy?? Little bump on his nose, now keep coming and going. I'm thinking to take him a vet. Hope he is O.K. Anyways, this little doggy, loves to be a part of anything. Here you go, he came to say hi when I was taking photos for granny square cushion.

Winter is a good time for me to start projects since I don't have Loyalist Plaza Market and I don't go to any craft show. So every winter, I try making something new and I just made this cushion cover. 16 granny squares on each side, and I croched them together except one edge with three buttons so I can slide cushion in and out. I will post close up and detail photos soon.
Here is more photos of this cushion...Granny Square
Facebook Page... Licca
Etsy Store...Licca's Handmade

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Crochet Night!

I taught myself how to crochet back in 2007 and ever since I have been so much enjoying creating stuff. It is so amazing that you can do so much thing with just one needle. Tonight I had a crochet night with a girl I used to work with at Starbucks. She never crocheted before, so I brought some yarn and needles to work with taught basic crochet over a cup of coffee. She reminded me of the day I started learning how to crochet... fingers, arms are so intense, trying to coordinate with you right fingers and left fingers, but then she was able to work little bit faster as she got hang of it. So tonight I taught how to make foundation and single crochet and she told me she is going to practice everynight until she feels more comfortable. Leaning new things are not always so easy, but it is so exiciting. I guess her goal so far is to make blanket as her grandmother used to make and I think she can do it and I'm excited for her!! Oh by the way, we don't have many cafe around here, and which I really wish, but I really liked the atmosphere the Starbucks we went tonight. We crocheted and some were reading, some were playing poker. I can't wait for next sesson!!
私がかぎ編みを始めたのは2007年。ちょうどクルーズ船でのマーケットを始めた頃で、その時はまだジュエリーばかり売ってました。まだビザがなくて普通の仕事に就くことができなかったから、自分に充てる時間はたっぷり、その分お金はなしという感じ。なんとかして新しいものを作ってマーケットで売れないかなと試行錯誤しつつ、興味のあったかぎ編みをスタートした次第です。基本を学ぶために本を1冊買ってそれで少しずつ覚えて行って、たまたまある本でみた帽子をアレンジして作ったものをマーケットにおいてみたらそれがヒット。それ以来作品の幅が増えて今に至っています。ものづくり大好きな私はとにかくやりだしたら止まらない、今年のマーケットには新しい素材としてフェルトとチュールが参加予定。もうリストびっしりで手は2本じゃ足りないくらい。
さてさて、今夜はかぎ編みナイトでした♪
以前同僚だったケーティーがかぎ編みを習いたいというからスターバックスに集まってコーヒーをお供にかぎ編みセッション。セントジョンにはおしゃれなカフェがほとんどないのが残念。スタバは4件あるからその中で一番おしゃれで雰囲気がいいところを選んでゆったりした夜を過ごしました。私たちがかぎ編みをしてれば、もちろん読書をしてる人もいるし、チェスをしてる人もいました。あとからやって来たこれまた元同僚は棒編みを楽しみ、さらにあとからやってきた職場のマネージャーは読書。みんなそれぞれが暖かい飲み物と共に好きなことをしてくつろげる時間を共有できるのはとってもいいなって思いました。ケーティーはというと初めてのかぎ編みに悪戦苦闘。それでも最後のほうにはコツはつかんで来たようで今夜は2つのスティッチだけ教えて終了。あとはおうちで指に慣れされる練習をいっぱいして次のレッスンへ進もうねという予定。おばあちゃんが昔ブランケットやらいろいろ作ってくれたみたいで彼女も自分でブランケットを作ることが今のゴールなんだって。

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year!

Years come and go,
but this year
I specially wish for you a double dose of
health and happiness stopped with loads of good fortune.
Have a great year ahead!
HAPPY NEW YEAR 2011!!!


あけましておめでとうございます!
今年もみんなにとって健康で幸せな1年になることを祈っています。
こちらも日本に13時間遅れて2011年を迎えました。年末、デレックの実家に家族みんなが集合し、10人プラス犬2匹(チェスターとエマ)そして鳥1匹(九官鳥のフランシスコ)でわいわい過ごし、大晦日の夜は友達10人ちょい集まってカウントダウンパーティーを楽しみながら新しい年を迎えました。大きな新年の目標はあえて掲げず、今年も健康だけには気をつけてマイペースでいければと思ってます。今年もまた2年ぶりに日本に帰国するのでそれが今は何より楽しみ。こちらを4月26日に発つので日本には27日に到着予定で1ヶ月の滞在です!!デレックもまた日本語をぼちぼちお勉強中です。