Monthly Archives: November 2012

#TBCCrafters 4: Gift Box Made by Toilet Paper Roll

After a busy week of Thanksgiving week, it is time to resume the crafty soul. Before Thanksgiving, I have seen tons of stores/shops decorated for Christmas already. A lot of my friends shopped in Black Friday for Christmas gifts. I do not particularly do that but I did shop for kids’ clothes and some gifts items. For some gifts that I prepare, I need to find boxes or wrap up before I can give them out. For example, handmade earrings for my sister-in-laws do not come with gift boxes and wrapping with tissue paper is not presentable. This week’s craft idea is neat personalized and recycles household wastes. What you need is just toilet paper roll that you will definitely throw away after you have used the last piece of toilet paper, plus some wrapping paper and ribbons or embellishment.



1 toilet paper roll (or kitchen towel roll)

1 piece of wrapping paper, big enough to wrap around the paper roll

1 piece of ribbon


Steps to craft:

1) Press on the toilet paper roll and make it flat.

2) Measure 1/2″ from the top and the bottom of the paper roll in the middle and make a mark on both front and back.

3) Use the fingers to curve the paper roll inwards right at the marks of the 2 sides to form a pocket.

4) Cut the wrapping paper a bit longer and wider than the paper roll. Use glue to stick the wrapping paper on and wrap around the paper roll. Hide the excessive paper inside the paper roll pocket.

5) Tie a strip of ribbon and make a bow as decoration.

This is a very simple and useful craft that children can help out. There are numerous options for decoration other than a ribbon bow.

Do you have a Thrilling Thursday craft to add? Add a link to your blog post in the linky below after you’ve left a comment on this post and add this button to your blog post!” 


Midnight Cafe – Yakkodoufu

Yakkodoufu is a very simple dish that you don’t even need to cook or use the stove. It’s a cold dish good for appetizer or snack. Yakkodoufu means cold Tofu, やっこどうふ in Japanese and 奴豆腐 in Chinese writing. You can guess from the name that it has Tofu. And the rest of the ingredients are usually found in a Japanese household easy.


1 box of Silky Tofu

1/4 onion (shredded)

3g of Bonito flakes

Soy sauce (portion depends on your preference)

1 Tbsp of minced garlic

1 Tbsp of minced ginger

A little bit of sesame oil


How to cook?

1) Put the tofu into refrigerator for 2 hours to let it stay cold.

2) Onion shredded into small pieces and dip in cold water for 15 minutes.

3) Cut the tofu into 4 or more pieces, put a little bit of minced garlic and bonito flakes on top, pour some soy sauce on the bonito flakes, then top with shredded onion and minced ginger, then some more bonito flakes. Pour more soy sauce on top, then a bit of sesame oil and minced ginger. Then, it is ready to serve.


1) Onion will become less hot and softened after dipping into cold water for 15 minutes. Take it out and drain it dry then it is ready to be used.

2) Other ingredients such as spring onion, shredded seaweed, sesame seeds and cilantro would be used for some families. Other than soy sauce, some people would use miso dressing, soba dressing or sesame dressing to create different favors.

3) Bonito flakes is made from the meat of skipjack tuna. Japanese usually cooks the fish, then dry its rear part until the moisture reduced to less than 15%. After storage in a dry place for a while, mold will form and then shave it into bonito flakes with a saw-like knife. Japanese use bonito flakes in many  traditional dishes and soup bases.

Midnight Cafe – Fried Pork Chop Don

“Don” in Japanese means lunchbox, usually it is a set lunch with rice, meat/seafood, side dishes and appetizer. A simple one would be just rice covered with sautéed/deep-fried meat/seafood plus onion and eggs. This week’s “homework” is deep-fried pork chop don. A lot of Japanese students would have deep-fried pork chop don as their lunch during examination season because the pronunciations of “champion” and “deep-fried pork chop don” are similar in Japanese. They believe that eating it before examination would bring them good luck to have outstanding results.

In Midnight Cafe comic book, there is one story about an amateur kick-boxer who likes to order deep-fried pork chop don after winning his boxing games. He met a woman in Midnight Cafe. The woman’s husband died and works hard to raise a teenager daughter. Tried to win a game as a stepping stone to become a professional kick-boxer, he quit his job and practiced full-time. Fate was not in his favor for his career but he won the love of his life. To celebrate, the owner made him and his loves family don instead of deep-fried pork chop don. Family don refers to chicken cooked with onion and eggs. It is a symbol of family bonding. Having a family don means that they are a family now.

For my recipe here, I did not deep-fried the pork chop. Instead, I fried it with only 2 Tbsp of cooking oil. The traditional Japanese way is deep-frying the pork chop then sauté for a bit in the sauce. I try to make my family eating healthier. Therefore, I avoid using deep-frying method.

Ingredients: (serves 2)

2 Thick pork chop

1/2 Onion

2 eggs

1/2 tsp salt

1 Tbsp light soy sauce

1 Tbsp dark soy sauce

2 Cup fish stock (or chicken broth)

1/2 tsp sugar

2 Tbsp cooking oil

2 Tbsp Shredded seaweed

3 Tbsp of all-purpose flour

4 Tbsp of Panko breadcrumbs

1 Tbsp shredded ginger

How to cook:

1) Make a few cut on the sides of the pork chop, pound it down for a bit. These can prevent the pork chop from curling during deep-frying and make the pork chop tender. Marinate the pork chop with a punch of salt.

2) All purpose flour, eggs (whisked) and Panko breadcrumbs separate in 3 bowls. Put the pork chop into the bowl with flour, coat both sides and shake off excessive flour. Then, put the pork chop into eggs and let it coat, then let the excessive eggs drip off. Finally, put the pork chop into Panko breadcrumbs and coat both sides. Use the fingers to press the breadcrumbs gently on the pork chop. It will help to make the breadcrumbs stay on the pork chop.

3) Hit a cooking pan with 2 Tbsp of cooking oil and fry both sides of the pork chop until it cooks through. Drain the oil and put the pork chop aside.


4) Onion cut into strips. Put the fish stock, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce and sugar in a shallow pan, bring it to a boil. Add onion and cook with medium heat for 5 minutes until the onion turns soft.

5) Cut the pork chop into 1″ strips and then put them into the fish stock. Pour the leftover egg on top. Cover the pan and cook for another 15 seconds. Pour on top of a bowl of rice. Sprinkle with shredded ginger and seaweed and the fried pork chop don is ready to serve.


1) Do not cook for too long after pouring in the egg into the cooking pan. Otherwise, it will be too well-done. The best texture would be half-cooked and half-raw. Let the raw egg mixed with the soup and rice.

2) Making cuts on the sides of the pork chop prevent it from curling and shrieking during cooking. And it can also help the meat cook well even though it is thick.

Midnight Cafe (Shinya Shokudo) @ Monday

Midnight Cafe (Shinya Shokudō) is a Japanese comic series. The first comic book launched in October of 2006 and is still being published. The 9th book  has just published in this month. The story of this comic series is about a small Japanese café in an alley of Shinjuku. The café opens midnight everyday and closes at 7am the next day. On the menu, there are only pork stew, beer, Japanese wine and rice wine but the owner/chef can cook whatever the customers request. Storytelling links with dishes. Most of the stories are very touching and reflect the facts of life.

Honestly speaking, the drawing style and characters are not my cup of tea but the various dishes are really attractive. All those are Japanese dishes that can be easily made at home. Each story will mention about the techniques to cook the dish.  Ever since the series launched, it arouses a lot of attention in the Asian community. Many of the bloggers have tried cooking the dishes appeared in the comic books. When you type in Shinya Shokudō, you may find a lot of blog posts about that.

Some months ago, 2 women in Hong Kong formed a bloggers hop called “Shinya Shokudōto cooks fun club” to link bloggers from various countries. Every Sunday midnight, a new blog post will be written and published by the bloggers in this bloggers hop. Each week, all the members will cook one dish and link all the posts together. The beauty and fun of this bloggers hop is the variety and creativity of each member. Even based on the same dish idea, each member will have his/her own way to cook and to serve. I have joined for a few months already and have cooked more than 10 dishes. All the recipes post in my other blog It is a blog in Chinese. I decide to write the English version and post in Girly Creation to share with more people. Cooking is also another kind of creation, isn’t it?

To allow myself some more time to rewrite the recipes in English, I will post the recipes on each Monday night. Hope that someone would find it interesting and fun.

#TBCCrafters 3: Making a rose with magazine paper

My computer crashed the third time in a month. Luckily, my hubby was using it each time and I won’t be blamed. You know, my guy usually thinks that woman is a killer to all electronics. Every time when the computer acts up, the first question is: “What you have done? What you have put in?” He keeps thinking that I must have downloaded some “toxic” apps or gone to some “horrible” sites. But, indeed, I did not even upload any of the photos about this crafts yet!!!!

OK, I finally got every photos uploaded through my laptop (it’s a pain, it ran so slow) and it took me forever to fine tune each of them. Rant over… I am here and get everything fixed. (Drum rolls please….) The 3rd TBC Crafters Hop project is making a rose with magazine paper. The cost is likely zero, assuming that you have tons of old magazines at home and you can steal your kids’ school glue. It can be used as an embellishement, a gift tag or coaster and many other options you can think of.

2 x 2.5″ diameter card-board paper circles
21 x 2″ square magazine paper
1 or 2 x tissue paper
Glue & scissors

1) Stuff the tissue paper, glue it on top of a piece of card-board paper circle.

2) Glue one piece of 2″ square magazine paper in the middle on top of the tissue paper. Then fold all the other paper squares into half to form triangles. Use 3 pieces of paper triangles to form a layer in the middle. Use 3 pieces of triangles each time and adjust the angles in each layer so that they look like rose petals.

3) Flip the rose over and cut out excessive paper, leaving only those wide enough to be folded over to the back and glued.

4) For the 2 pieces of leaves, take out the last 2 pieces of triangles, fold each of them in half, then fold the 2 sides to the middle of the paper and form a leave.

5) Glue the 2 leaves at the back and then cover it with the 2nd piece of card-board circle.

Adjusting the angles to arrange the paper triangles would give you different looks of roses. I have demonstrated 2 looks here. You can also use 4 pieces of paper triangles each time and start with a square in the middle, 5 pieces, 6 pieces and so…. There are tons of options.

I added a skinny elastic band at the back of the rose and it becomes an embellishment for a gift box.

You can also not using the tissue underneath the petals, let it finished flat. Then, laminates it and use as a coaster. My kids saw the 2 roses and dear son wants to add a stem to make it a nicer gift to the teacher. He knows what women like, isn’t he?

Do you have a Thrilling Thursday craft to add? Add a link to your blog post in the linky below after you’ve left a comment on this post and add this button to your blog post!”

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#TBCcraftes 2 – Felt & Ribbon Turkey Ornament

Time flies and it is time for the 2nd week of TBC Crafters Hop. Halloween has just passed and my family has a very good time, particularly the kids. Now, it is time to prepare for Thanksgiving. My kids’ school has already sent newsletter mentioning about Thanksgiving feast in school and holiday schedule. Although it may be still a bit early, there is no harm to set for the turkey.

This is a very simple craft idea which only requires simple stitching techniques. The finish product is about 4-1/2″(H) x 6″(W) and you can adjust to make it bigger or smaller as well as the color combination. I used different colors of felt circles for clear demonstration.


Material required:
2 x felt circles of 3″ diameter
2 x felt circles of 1.5″ diameter
5 x 2″ long of 3/8″ yellow ribbons
5 x 3″ long of 3/8″ orange ribbons
5 x 4″ long of 3/8″ royal blue ribbons
1 x 4″ long of 3/8″ red ribbon
1 x 3″ long of 3/8″ red ribbon
1 x 1.5″ long of 3/8″ yellow ribbon
Some batting for stuffing the head and body
Needles and threads (suggested to have matching threads)


1) Fold the 2″ yellow, 3″ orange and 4″ royal blue ribbons into halves and use needle and threads to stitch all 3 pieces together in the order of 2″, 3″ and 4″. The stitches do not need to be perfect as they should be all covered and hidden when finished. The 3″ red ribbon also folded into half and make a 30 degree angle when stitching together. This red ribbon will be the turkey’s wattle. The 1.5″ yellow ribbon is twisted to form a triangle in the middle and it will be the beak of the turkey.


2) Put the 2 x 3″ felt circles together and starts stitching, then add the 4″ red ribbon on the top of the turkey body, then sew the 5 x 3-in-1 ribbons in between the 2 pieces of felt circles as the tails of the turkey.

3) Use the 2 x 1.5″ felt circle to form the head of the turkey. Use some black thread to embroider an eye for the turkey. Sew the wattle and beak in between the 2 felt circles and leave about 1″ of opening. Stuff the batting into the head part, sew it closed after putting sufficient batting inside.

4) Stuff in the batting to the turkey body and stitch the head and the body together.


Do you have a Thrilling Thursday craft to add? Add a link to your blog post in the linky below after you’ve left a comment on this post and add this button to your blog post!”

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#TBCcrafters 1: Ribbon flowers headband without a glue gun

So excited to be in the TBC Crafter’s Hop. We started with 25 women from over the country and I am so excited to learn from all the others. This is my first assignment and I’m so sorry that I have missed the deadline. My bad. New manager, Halloween, trying to stay on top on everything….well well well….late is better than none. Here’s my first TBC Crafters Hop’s project: Ribbon flowers headband without a glue gun. Yes, no glue gun, at all. I instead used needle and thread to sew.

Here come the ingredients first: –

2 x 10″ satin ribbons (1 x cream and 1 x lavender here)

2 x rhinestone (1/2″ in diameter with 2 holes aimed for sewing on fabric)

1 x skinny elastic headband (whatever color you like)

1 x 2-1/2″ x 1″ felt

1 x 0.75″ x 1″ felt

needles and thread for sewing (recommend to use threads of matching colors, I used black and white here to show the stitches clearly for demonstration)

1 pair of scissors

Now the instructions: –

1) Heat seal the 2 piece of satin ribbons. Run a thread from one side to another side on the edge of the ribbons like a wide “U” letter.

2) Pull the thread from one side to form a flower then secure the shape by stitching at the back side of the satin ribbons.

3)Put the rhinestone on top of the flower (the shinning side of the satin ribbon) and secure the rhinestone with needle and threads.

4) Make 2 ribbon flowers and secure them on the 2-1/2″ x 1″ felt using needle and threads.

5) Wrap the 0.75″ x 1″ felt around the skinny elastic headband and make a loop with needle and threads. This is the base where the flowers attach to the headband. Sew the 2 pieces of felts together so that the flowers attach to the elastic headband.

Without a glue gun, you can still able to make a ribbon flowers headband.

Do you have a Thrilling Thursday craft to add? Add a link to your blog post in the linky below after you’ve left a comment on this post and add this button to your blog post!”

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