Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Spinning Tuesday? Not!

OK, I'm changing it to Spinning Wednesday. This just isn't working out on Tuesdays. I keep trying to catch up on housework on Tuesdays instead — boring stuff like laundry, vacuuming, and changing the sheets on the bed. Can't do it on the weekend because I'm usually too busy. Can't really get into it on Monday because I'm visiting mom in the afternoon. Ditto Friday. So I end up going from Thursday to Tuesday without any major efforts in the housecleaning department, just basic stuff I do every day like cooking, dishes, feeding the cats etc. And today was a perfect day to vacuum because it was the first cooler semi-cloudy day we've had for ages. I couldn't help but take advantage of it. I even went out and picked a bucket and a half of my blackberries because it's supposed to rain some tonight and tomorrow morning. Blackberries don't much like being rained on — they mould really fast. I also tucked my wild and crazy tomatoes into their house so hopefully they'll stay dry. They're just starting to ripen and I wouldn't want that late blight to get them now that I'm finally eating some. Whew! I'm tired!

To answer the comment from Susan, the stools that I use for my marudais when I'm teaching kumihimo are small folding ones from Canadian Tire. You have to watch out for the quality though — some of them are not very good and have nicks and rough spots on the wooden top. It's kind of hard to tell that when they're shrink-wrapped in plastic. To make them, Thom took off the metal bases (they just screw on) and put the wooden tops one at a time on his lathe to cut the holes. He's done over a dozen of them for me and my students. I find them a little short to sit at in a normal chair, but you could prop them up on something sturdy to the right height for your back. My infamous Cat...er, Morris chair is actually a good height for me since it's lower than a regular dining chair. I need to get that darn braid finished and in the mail! I'm obviously putting it off.

Speaking of kumihimo, I borrowed this intriguing book from a friend. Actually I just about wrenched it out of her hands, poor dear! I will give it back as soon as I figure out how to do some of the braids in it. It was written by Makiko Tada to be used with the Hamanaka disk and plate. These are stiff foam versions of the cardboard circles and squares that I learned to braid on. I only have the circle and would rather use the real marudai anyway but some of the braids for the plate are very interesting and I'm not sure whether they can be easily done on a marudai. I'll find out or I'll be making a cardboard square! Of course the whole thing is in Japanese but there are many diagrams. Plus I have 2 friends who can read Japanese which might come in handy. And of course I will share what I find out with the friend I originally borrowed it from. She already knows how to do some of the braids in here though because she took a seminar with Makiko at the ANWG conference in Tacoma a few weeks ago. Lucky duck.

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