Mystery Blogger Award!

I am delighted to be nominated for the Mystery Blogger Award by lovely Little Mayfly. Thank you, Little Mayfly and also thank you, Okoto for creating this tag.

The Rules..

1. Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
2. Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well
3. Tell your readers 3 things about yourself
4. Answer the questions from the nominator
5. Nominate other bloggers
6. Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog
7. Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice
8. Share a link to your best post(s)

Ok, these are 3 things about me. I am an artisan knitter who is specialised in finger-knitting. I live in Shoreditch, London with my husband and Bella the Naughty Yorkie. And I am originally from Japan.

About my best post business, I am not sure which one is the most appropriate but how about this one?

Little Mayfly has provided me with following questions:

1. Your main goals in life?
2. Where would you love to visit?
3. Favourite book?
4. What can you not live without?
5. Where is your favourite place?

My main goal is to develop my finger-knitting technique further. I want to create more amazing garments using finger-knitting which I have been nurturing for the past 15 years. And I want the public to realise how wonderful handcrafted objects are.

I would love to see the Northern Lights. So anywhere like Iceland, Norway, Canada, etc…

I read a lot and rarely pick up the same book twice. Therefore, it has to be a book which I enjoyed reading recently. The book is Finding Longitude by Richard Dunn. The book is about how the long sea voyage of the 18th Century was improved by the development of a marine chronometer. My mum and I visited the same exhibition at the National Maritime Museum, and since then, I was absolutely smitten with the longitude problem!

I can never live without a dog or two!

My favourite place has to be where my loved ones are. I just want to be with them.

My nominations are:

1. Agnes Ashe
2. reviewdonkey
3. Roxy Moto
4. Fishink

And my questions to them are:

1. What makes you smile on miserable wintry Monday morning?
2. Are you a tea drinker or coffee drinker?
3. Favourite film?
4. If you are to be locked up in one famous landmark for a day / night, which place do you pick?
5. What menu would you choose if it were to be your last supper?

It was really fun to participate in this award selection. Hope my nominees will feel the same way!

Kaori x

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Bonsai Blues

Well, well, well, what am I gonna do with a pot of bonsai? I shook my head as I placed the offending object on a foot stall by the door. Guess who sent it to me as a birthday prezzie? My father-in-law! Why bonsai? WHY??

David, my father-in-law, has the annoying habit of sending unwanted gifts. I suspect he tends to overthink when it comes to choosing presents, and as a result, Hubbie and I end up receiving gifts which are totally out of sync. Why can he not give me what I want?! I would rather have a shopping voucher than a bonsai! I may sounds bratty but his idea of what makes a personal gift exciting and clever has never seen eye to eye with mine, and I am increasingly getting annoyed. Every year, Hubbie tries his best to communicate with him about the issue, suggesting him boring gifts such as a voucher or a box of chocolate will be more appropriate. Then, the day arrives with yet another wacky unwanted gift, we both have to throw our hands up in the air. What is wrong with him?!

We always give him what he wants at his birthday and Christmas. Like a vintage Scottish whisky, a case of vintage wine, a voucher for a flight simulator at British Airways, etc, etc…

What is this? Is it my new toy? Is it edible?

Bella seems to be the only one who is interested in the bonsai. Sorry bonsai, but you will have to be taken to Hubbie’s office because I can’t stand looking at you!

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Muzzle of evidence

Bella, what’s happened around your mouth??? I was puzzled because her muzzle was covered with bits of white. Like Bella the Decorator.

Wat d’ya mean, Miss? 

Eep! What the heck has happened to my wall?!

Did you do that, Bella?! WHY??!!

While I was in a shower this morning, she decided to damage the wall. She must have scratched it repeatedly while she was standing on her hind legs. Her front paws were covered with the white stuff too.

What Hubbie will say when he sees this…

I’m sure he will be very unimpressed with her handy work.

By the way, do you know today is my birthday?

Thank you very much for your unforgettable birthday present…*sigh*

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Twinkle on Kensington Church Street

Ouch! I poked my eye with my finger accidentally as I was hastely applying eyeshadow over my left eyelid. I knew nothing good would come out if things were done in a hurry. However, I was way behind the time and panicking! Ohhhh, I’m gonna be late!! I kept on muttering the same phrase over and over, like the rabbit in Alice in Wonderland. The appointment with my hairstylist was at 1pm, and I was running late. If I didn’t hit the pavement in 15 minutes, I wouldn’t be able make it on time. Of course, I could go with my face make-up free. But then I would have nothing else but my bare face to stare at in the mirror for a couple of hours. The thought of it made me shudder. Ugh…

Anyway, Bella and I were on Kensington Church Street last Thursday. The weather was exceptionally mild and pleasant, and we were in the mood for a long walk.

Kensington Church Street, which connects High Street Kensington and Notting Hill Gate, is well known for expensive antique shops. The thoroughfare is lined with shop windows in which one can gape at amazing treasures and relics from the past…

Ahhh, it’s like visiting V&A and British Museum…

My girl Bella was not into antique, apparently…

Cuddle me! Carry me! I’m not interested in old stuff.

Oh Bella, you’re so disrespectful.

She doesn’t give a damn, evidently.

Some shops didn’t weather the post-Brexit climate very well. I saw gutted shop interiors, and it made me sad…

Once upon a time, I used to come to the street three times a week in order to help out a shop which sold vintage prints. Being an art student, I was very good at cutting cardboards for framing, so I was in their basement studio, wielding a Stanley knife and sticking prints with special glue. During my lunch break, I usually sauntered towards Notting Hill Gate and gazed into the shop windows along the street. There were two particular shops I was fascinated with but never dared to enter.

They were Mrs Crick’s Chandelier Shop and Denton Antiques. Today, they are still very much in business and I am very happy for them!

The shop mistress of the print shop was a spinster and a tough taskmaster who was not into small talk. During our rare moment of chatting, I mentioned about how I was taken by the beauty of the chandeliers and my desire of owning one one day…

She looked at me with amazement at first and asked me if I knew how much they costed. Those shops never displayed any ticket so I had no idea how extraordinarily expensive they were.
‘I think you will change your mind if you are told how dearly just one crystal from those chandeliers costs.’ She left me very red faced.

She could have corrected my ignorance a little more kindly, I reflected on as I gazed at the crystals…

I used to wonder who would buy such an opulent light fixture like this for their home. Industry tycoons? Arab royalties? The crystals twinkled behind the window pane right in front of me. But the monetary distance between us seemed to be a light year away.

Now decades later, I live in a flat with ceiling height high enough to hang a proper chandelier. Do I fancy one now? I look around and ponder. Probably not. Our decor won’t go with it, and Hubbie will never agree to have one as he hates any period style older than the 50’s.

By the way, another fixture of Kensington Church Street is The Churchill Arms

I love this pub. They are one of those old-fashioned English pubs with great decor. They also serve delicious Thai food and welcome dogs – very important!

Ok, Bella. Our next destination is Kensington Gardens. Allons-y!

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Tech pitfalls

Hmmm, things are never straightforward, are they? I sighed as I took silicone ear pads off from my newly acquired AirPods because the lid of the charger / case didn’t close properly if the ear pads were on. The fit of AirPods was designed so precisely and snugly, it didn’t  allow even a wafer-thin silicone membrane to come between them!

I ordered those ear pads because my earpiece fell out more than a few times while I was adjusting a scarf around my neck. What will happen if I lose them on a busy underground platform while I’m standing in a gust caused by an approaching tube train? Especially, I will be walking with Bella the Handful, and she can be a distraction too. I really need something to secure the earpieces in my ears, I pondered. Is there any product which will alleviate my tech anxiety? I googled “AirPods inear secure” as keywords. The search threw up a few suggestions, and I bought two different type of ear pads through Amazon Prime.

The cheapest ones were a pair of silicone tips which were to be placed over the earpieces like socks. With them on, the headphones felt less loose in my ears, and I quite liked the simplicity of the design. However, I was hugely disappointed when I found the lid of the charger didn’t shut if the tips were left on. What a deal-breaker!!

Slightly more expensive ones were Earhoox. Again, they were made from soft silicone. The difference was the fin which protruded from the rim. The shape was like a tropical fish’s and it helped the headphone to be wedged securely.

So which one I liked better? I chose Earhoox. I found them less fiddly to handle and much harder to dislodge them even if I shook my head like Angus Young!

Buying AirPods meant to simplify my life – no more untangling cables, etc. However, I have found it was not so straightforward. I ended up carrying them in a storage case so they would be in the same place for easy use…

The case in the pic is one of four pieces I bought from Amazon. The size is almost same as Louis Vuitton’s round coin purse…

I only needed one but it came as a set of four for £6.99, and each of them came with a carabiner. Hubbie wants the black one for a memory cards storage, and I can swap between three colours depending on which hue goes well with my outfit. So it has turns out all fine and dandy in the end…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura


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