On a Whim

This took me a while to write up. I haven’t been in the mood to post. I hope to feel inspired to post more regularly–phf

During my girl’s zoom meeting, I mentioned that I wanted to see the eruption at Kilauea Volcano. Thinking no one would be interested, “J” said she would go with me to my surprise. Three weeks later, four more people, including one husband, were off to Hawaii Island for a two-day visit.

With no solid plan, only to see Kilauea at night, we started the day off meeting at Ken’s House of Pancake for breakfast and a planning session. Ken’s is a Hilo landmark, close to the airport, great to start the trip with a good breakfast.

After our breakfast and planning session, we were off to the Bayfront area to check out the farmers market and the shops. My list from mom was avocados, fishcake, and anything else that’s good.

Under the pavilion, full of beautiful produce from Hawaii Island

The produce farmers market is under a pavilion, and across the street is the craft section. Here are a few things I picked up there.

After an afternoon of roaming, we made our way to KTA supermarket to pick up some dinner and snacks for the evening adventure to Kilauea volcano. Then off to evening accommodation at a friend’s Airbnb. It’s a two-bedroom guesthouse in Kurtistown halfway between Volcano and Hilo. There were animals on the property to distract us from unpacking: a steer called Red, a horse (I forgot his name), Pluto the goat, two shy cats, and many feral chickens.

After a quick snack, we were off to Volcano National Park to start our adventure to see the current eruptions. With a quick pit stop at the visitor center, we follow the line of cars to the end of the road to Uekahuna. It was a little past sunset, and the sky had cleared to present us with beautiful blues and oranges.

Beautiful remnants of the sunset

From this vantage point, we could see the orange glow of the eruption. It was just beyond the cliff. It had turned cold, I forgot my rain jacket to block the wind. Luckily I was smart enough to bring my shawl and I used it as a head/neck scarf to keep me warm.

The Glow


The skies cleared to present us with a beautiful show of stars and planets. Several of my friends were using an app to identify the stars. In our stargazing, we caught the attention of a friendly man that helped us identify more stars then pointed to the people on the other side of the Halema’uma’u Crater. He told us that you needed to hike into the viewing point. He said 3/4 of a mile from the parking area 3/4 mile to the viewing point (I think most of my friends only heard 3/4 of a mile). We all agreed it was doable and off we went to our next adventure. (Thank you to “C” for bringing all of her torches as I forgot mine back at the Airbnb)

This view started our stargazing

The almost full lighted our way to the viewing area. The park rangers did a great job at directing us and the hundreds of others making our way to see the lava flow. Once we got there, it was pretty amazing. I didn’t expect the flow to be so steady.

The Flow. My lowly S10 does not do it justice.

It was a pretty magical night. The skies cleared for a beautiful starry sky, there was an almost full moon rise, and Madame Pele’s show was spectacular. What more could I ask for. Sometimes it’s good to say out loud what you want to do. It may just happen.

Here I am, on the walk back to the car, happy I came to see Madame Pele’s beautiful show. You can see the almost full moon behind me.

Row 80 out of 105

Phew! I’m on row 80 of my Scheepjes CAL.

Row 80: Two sides done, 2 more to go. It’s as wide as my double bed with 25 rows to gow.

Part 5 has been harder than the dreaded part 4 (lacy corners). Could it be the repetitiveness of these rows or is it that I’m not paying attention. Whatever it is, there has been lots of adding rows, counting, cursing, and ripping out, repeat.

I guess I need some encouragement to get me to the end. This is what the blanket look like so far. It’s much bigger than I thought it would be.

Moving Forward

I had a good run of 21 years at my job. My furlough has turned into a layoff. I made many great friends in the 21 years who I will miss, not working with them. I will miss working with beautiful images and illustrations in my designs. I’ve learned so much from these many years with these people.

Hiking will get me through it

But I think it’s time. I was antsy throughout the leave, wanting to know if I would be going back or not. Being laid off is the kick in the pants that I needed to move on with my life.

The last 3.5 years has brought so many major life changes and I’ve been running with it non-stop. Now it’s time for me to slow down and think about what I want to do with my life and how to achieve it.

Lone torch ginger bud standing strong amongst the brush

The first thing I decided it to work only part-time 30 hours a week to be available for my parents when they need me. I move back to Hawaii to help them and with COVID, life has changed for them and they seem to need me more.

The folks with a mid day threat–ICE CREAM!!!

I need to prioritize my ever-growing To-Do list. That should be the top of the list. So many things I want to do, and at times it gets overwhelming. For now, I’ll make a shortlist of the most important things.

  1. prioritize my TO-DO List
  2. make a budget
My furry twosome kept me entertained.

My time off hasn’t been unproductive. Here’s what I’ve up to since August. I’ve been busy knitting, crocheting, jamming, and pickling Japanese-style.

Knitting and Crocheting

Jamming

Pickling Japanese-style

A project I could finish . . .

I decided to knit a hat with one of the skeins from the goody bag I bought from Jimmy Bean Wool, Madelinetosh DK Twist Desert Bloom. All of my recent projects at are still on needles, mostly going backward. Lots of ripping out or total start overs, have made those project very boring. I need a break. I needed something to make me feel acomplished.

The pattern I choose was Amida from by Maiko Hikosaka. I wanted something easy-ish but cute (of course) and I like the graphic quality of the lines.

I realized from my recent projects there were many false starts. Cast-on, knit, find a mistake, read the pattern wrong, rip out mistake or total start over. This process may repeat a couple of times and this project is no exception.

To change this habit, I need to read the pattern really well, account for stitches in the instruction to make sure I understand what I’ve been asked to do. Every pattern designer has their own way of writing a pattern, and I need to read the pattern and annotate what it means in my own words. This is what a good educational content designer would do. I’m just lazy. haha.

Once I got this pattern in my head, it was very easy and the yarn was a dream to knit with. I took the project with me on my trip to Japan and finished on my first full day of the tour while on the train to the first trail.

now to weave the ends in

By the end of my hiking tour, I decided to give the hat to our tour leader. We had a conversation on the trail about Hokkaido in the fall and the winter. I thought she could make good use of it on a winter hike.

Here’s a preview on the my next project.
Pattern: Alicorn by Julie Crawford
Yarn: Lecce from Puppyarn.com, color: 412
Bought the yarn from Masuzakiya
Fiber: 90% wool 10% mohair
Cast-on: day 7 of the tour in the court yard of our inn.
Continued to work on in Kyoto. Probably use two skein (40g each) to get this done.

scarp yarn stitch markers to help me track my pattern