Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Homemade Cake and Knitting Ahead

Happy 4th Japaniversary to me! I've been in Japan for 4 years. While this might seem like an inconsequential anniversary to mark, you do not know how often I get the question of how long I've lived here from new acquaintances (thus the necessity to keep track). In a strange coincidence, this date also falls on the day of my other half's birthday. Usually I like to buy a fruit-covered shortcake at the nearby bakery for his special day, but this year I got ambitious and decided to make an American style yellow cake with decadent chocolate cream cheese frosting from scratch. The whole process made me miss the simple conveniences of box cake mix and canned frosting, but my cake turned out delicious (and terribly sweet, just like home!).

If you'd like to try your hand at making it, here is the yellow cake recipe and here is the fudgy cream cheese frosting recipe. If you've got an insatiable sweet tooth like I have, I would definitely give these a try!

In other news, I've been shamefully working on too many crafty projects at once, which I hope I can finish before school starts up again:

1. I'm taking Joi Mahon's Fast Track Fitting class on Craftsy in hopes of getting a good fit my Hawthorn. I made a muslin of the Hawthorn bodice and the fit makes me want to cry.

2. Finishing a short-sleeved Archer but I'm stumbling on what buttons to use without making it look like a pajama top.

3. Japan's typical brutal summer heat continues but I'm already brainstorming fall sewing. I'm ready to throw in the towel with summer sewing since all I want to wear is shorts and tank tops, especially when I'm at home and can get away with being a bit indecent. For my Fahrenheit-using friends, here's an idea of what the weather's like here every day:

Variation? Nah, that would make it interesting.

Anyways, so I've been thinking about cool weather jackets and coats to sew, and I've picked knitting back up.

By the way, I'm in love with my turquoise nail polish, especially against this gray yarn.

I've dabbled in knitting for the past decade, mostly making minor projects as gifts for friends in the form of hats, scarves, and coasters (you still have those, Casey? ;D) but I want to level up my rudimentary skills and make a sweater. I can't believe I've forgotten all the great merits of knitting: the supplies needed for it are much smaller compared to sewing, I can do it almost anywhere (right now for me it's on the couch as I marathon Game of Thrones), there are a lot of great free projects online, and it keeps my hands busy (I'm a reformed nail biter and a notorious fidgeter/picker. Sorry, TMI). Right now I'm making a very simple free project I found on Ravelry to get back on the horse.

I am hoping for fall soon. I've had enough unbearable heat and ready for sweater season. How about you?

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