Monthly Archives: April 2011


For other lei, see pikake, braided, spiral, or candy lei. This photo shows what we will be making in this post.

It was very easy to make these eyelash lei. The one on the left was a crocheted chain that I went back over with single crochet stitches. It was a little thinner than I wanted so I did the one in the center with a chain of crochet and then double crocheted back over it. I used a size K hook.

The one on the right is knitted. I found using my #15 needles and two strands of eyelash, that 80 stitches ended up to be 40 inches long, (102 cm.). I knitted three rows. I like it the best of these three. The knitting curls around to your advantage.

All you need is some eyelash yarn, scissors and a crochet hook or knitting needles.. You can use one or more colors. The eyelash is so soft to work with and against the skin.

I started knitting with 4 strands at once and that worked well, so I went with 6 strands. All I did was cast on 80 stitches and knit a row as I cast off and it has a lovely thick feel to it.

You could crochet around in a spiral like for the rattail spiral lei. When I try that the softness of the yarn makes it collapse in and I get frustrated working with it. It works more easily, if you pair it with rattail for some heft.

Tie the ends together and weave in the ends. Aloha. Have fun!

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on April 30, 2011 in How to, Making Lei


Tags: , , , , , ,



If I judge myself in any way, for instance that I am not enough, just as I am, then; I start projecting that out on others.

To forgive my judgments of others, I need to forgive the root problem of judging myself first. If I keep in a state of forgiving myself and accepting me warts and all, then my life is much easier and clearer.

I am enough.

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.

1 Comment

Posted by on April 27, 2011 in Abundance, How to


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Travel Japan — Byodo-in Temple

After visiting Fushimi Inari Shrine and getting all energized, I traveled to Byodo-in Temple.

Just now I looked it up online and found there is a half size replica temple on the island of Ohau. I’ll have to see it some time when I am on Ohau.

The temple in Japan, is a World Heritage site, a relic of the Heian period (800 to 1180 A.D.). It is built without nails under Chinese influence. It is meant to look like a phoenix landing at the water with his wings outstretched.

I took this picture from the side. To the right is the ‘tail’ of the phoenix and to the left his head.

This is taken facing the phoenix.

Turning to my right, I can fit in a shot of the phoenix’s elaborate, outstretched wing.

It was inspiring. This was one man’s chapel. What a beautiful place to meditate!

This tree stood on the property.

The Japanese like to prune their trees so they narrow toward the top to increase the sense of perspective.

Thank you for looking.


© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved

1 Comment

Posted by on April 25, 2011 in Abundance, garden, Japan


Tags: , , , , ,

Simplifying My Blog

Lately, I’ve increased my playload. Something needs to give.

The good news is I will continue blogging about Japan on Mondays and My Experiences With Abundance on Wednesdays and miscellany on Fridays.

The bad news is I am leaving my comments off and I will only be commenting on your blogs infrequently.

I appreciate all the comments and blog support I’ve received. It’s been fun.

Ideally in a month or two I will be set up to receive tweets and keep up that way. We’ll see.

Have your best day ever!

Leave a comment

Posted by on April 22, 2011 in writing


Tags: , , , , , ,



I have heard it said to give of the overflow. My experience has been that this is an excellent way to avoid some problems.

When you give of the overflow, you don’t deplete yourself. You give from your excess, after your own needs have been taken care of.

This doesn’t mean you don’t put yourself out and give a lot. It does mean you keep an awareness of your needs and take care of yourself first. By doing this you are able to be at the ready to help take care of others. By depleting yourself, you are much less use to anyone.

It’s like on airplanes, if you are with someone who needs assistance, take care of yourself, ( put on your own oxygen mask first.)

It is also useful as a criteria for saying no. I’m envisioning a world where it is as acceptable to say, ‘self first’ as it is to say ‘family first.’

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.

Leave a comment

Posted by on April 20, 2011 in Abundance


Tags: , , , , ,

Travel Japan — Fushimi Inari Shrine

After touring the Tofukuji Monastery, I could walk to the Fushimi Inari Shrine. My directions were to exit out of the south gate.

Lucky for me, no one understood me when I asked where the south gate was. If I thought to draw a picture of a compass or even write out south gate, they probably would have understood. The lucky part is without knowing which direction to go, I took a taxi.

The driver was probably my favorite taxi driver of all time. He had some command of English. He figured out that I had never been to the shrine before.

When we got close to the gates, I saw restaurants and called out to please stop. He looked perplexed so I said, I am hungry. He replied –

Ah, I understand hungry.

He continued driving into the temple and left me off in front of a temple restaurant. He told me if I didn’t find anything I liked there, that there were other places to eat and pointed them out.

When I got out of the car, he got out and took both my hands in his. He told me not to just look at the temple building. He said to be sure and go behind the temple and follow the trail. I had no clue what he was talking about, but I got the intensity of his good wishes for me.

When I got inside the restaurant, something put me off. Probably that I didn’t know how it worked. So I turned to check out the other eating places. That was when I saw some shopping stalls. I picked up a box of chocolate mochi and thought this will do. The lady told me they don’t sell the display food. In Japan they make realistic models of the food so you can see what you are getting. I laughed. I definitely didn’t want plastic display food. I bought a box of the real mochi and ate it.

I was feeling tired when I went behind the temple. Was it the chocolate mochi that kicked in or the hike I took? Orange is the color of sustained energy. This is where I hiked up the mountain.

At the higher elevations there were tea houses with a view.

There were smaller Shinto temples along the way.

Maintenance was going on.

This 2 1/2 mile hike up the mountain was very energizing and I would love to go again.

Thank you for your interest, since I am way behind, the comments are off.XD

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.

Leave a comment

Posted by on April 18, 2011 in Japan


Tags: , , , , , , ,

How To Make An Easy Spiral Crochet Lei.

For other lei, see pikake, braided, eyelash or candy lei. This photo shows what we will be making in this post.

To make an easy spiral crochet rattail lei, all you need is —

*  some rattail in your choice of color

*   crochet hook

*   scizzors

Here I am using 2mm rattail. It is also available in 1 mm thickness which will make a finer stitch. I am using a J crochet hook. The smaller hook you use, the finer your stitch.

Start with a knot and pull it tight as shown in the photos above and below.

Make a chain of four stitches. You could make your lei thinner by using a chain of three stitches or fatter by starting with 5 or more.

Make a single crochet in the chain closest to the knot.

Complete the single crochet stitch.

Now you have a circle. Next make a single crochet stitch in the next chain as you go counterclockwise around the circle. It will be the chain on the other side of the knot.

Continue spiraling around counterclockwise, using single crochet stitch. Every so often tug on the tail of your lei to tighten the stitches. If you don’t do this while you are working, it may end up loose and stretch out too much once it is worn. The rattail is stiff.

Keep going until you get the desired length, 36 or more inches, (92 cm). I am making this one 42 inches, (107 cm) because it is for a graduate and needs to fit over their mortarboard. Knot the end.

You will notice you have made a long tube. The ends are open on the diagonal.

Using a smaller crochet hook makes it a easier to pull the ends through. Pull them so the longest point of the ends overlap to fill out each other.

Pull tight and tie a square knot.

Voila. Add a bow or leave it plain.

The blue and white lei was made the same way, while carrying along two colors of rattail.

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on April 16, 2011 in How to




This week’s post is a sister to last week’s. This week the suggestion is to give a little more than is expected. It can be a little more of intangibles, like service or attitude.

It contributes to your consciousness of abundance. If you are giving a head of lettuce from your garden to your neighbor, check over the heads and give them an especially nice one. It’s win win for both of you.

Once I was putting a deposit on a workshop. I had an extra $5. with me and put the requested deposit plus the $5. It will make it easier when I have to pay the remainder, I thought. As it turns out, they were swamped with deposits, more than they could accommodate.

They accepted anyone who paid in full and the rest were left to a lottery — except, because I had paid that little bit more than, I was accepted.

Think of it, those businesses that give you a little more than, in service or quality or products. You notice. It feels good to be the recipient.

Consider trying this for your own good. It just happens to be good for everyone. I think that is often the case. What is good for you is good for all involved.

Have you had any experiences with this?

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on April 14, 2011 in Abundance, Uncategorized


Tags: , , , , ,


My first Saturday morning in Japan, I was scheduled to go to Tofukuji Temple. My feet hurt. After covering my blisters with band aides, I now had a second set of blisters next to the first ones.

I considered not following my itinerary and taking the day to shop. I had no idea what the places I was going to were, and didn’t know if I would like them.

When I saw that the following Monday was a whole day of shopping planned for me, (amazing planning by my tour co.) AND that Takashimaya Department store was on the way today, I decided to follow my itinerary.

The last time I went to Japan, one of the people on the tour recommended I get myself to Takashimaya Department store when they open. I did and what a thrill, it is. When the first customers walk in, all the employees are at their stations and say good morning and bow to you. I rode the escalator up and got bows along the way so much that I felt like Queen Elizabeth. I wanted to video tape the experience so I could post it here.  When I went inside with my camera running to tape the bowing and greeting; my sense was that my videotaping was a social error. Not wanting to make any more blunders than need be, I stopped taping. Here is a picture of  the welcome given by an employee just before opening the doors.

Next, I got myself to the station for a local train line. It was my first train ride on my own. When I got inside the station, there wasn’t any English. I realized to travel in another country where you don’t know the language, you have to be willing to feel stupid.

Being dyslexic, I am no stranger to that feeling. I tried pushing buttons on a machine and succeeded in having the station master come out to see what I was doing. I showed him in English where I wanted to go and he pantomimed how to buy the ticket. It is very easy once you know.

I was off and arrived at my destination station. I walked to Tofukuji. When I go to places I haven’t been before, I don’t know what exactly I am looking for. It’s all a surprise. I started by chasing down every possible turn. So, after taking three turns and backtracking, before finding the one I needed, I changed to thinking the next turns would be apparent. So now I went too far up a hill, until I found a person to ask. My feet were screaming at me.

Was it all worth it? OMG, yes. Tofukuji is a beautiful Monastery. Truth is, I was out of sorts when I got there. In a way, I am glad I was, because I got to feel more and more connected to my peacefulness as I walked through the gardens.

Shanti, shanti, shanti.

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on April 12, 2011 in Abundance, garden, Japan


Tags: , , , , , ,

BOOK REVIEW – Rio Star by Pepper Smith

TITLE: RIO STAR — A Patty O’Donnell Mystery

AUTHOR: Pepper Smith

GENRE: Romantic Suspense / Mystery

This is Pepper’s second book. The first  BLOOD MONEY is reviewed here. The third book REEF RUNNER, comes out as an e-book April 12.

It was exciting to win this book at Pepper Smith’s blog – Painting With Words. She writes suspense and teaches suspense writing at the Muse Online Conference. I’ve taken her class the last two years and appreciate her teaching style, which is very supportive. Her writing is similar – Pepper plays fair with her readers and is masterful at unfolding the story in clear way and timing.

Since the main character is transported away from her everyday world, we don’t see a lot of her family. We do get to see more of a villain from her first book. It is interesting to me to have a villain continuing in the series and I like it. I am looking for him to be in the next book too and want to know more about him. And especially, I’d like to learn more of another unwitting villain, who becomes an ally to Patty, the main character.

I read this book in one day, I couldn’t leave it down.

Disclaimer – My policy is to only review books that I like. I received a copy of this book in a giveaway from the author’s blog.

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.,

1 Comment

Posted by on April 10, 2011 in Book Review


Tags: , , ,