Mother’s Day in Japan changed the way I feel about holidays

Tomorrow will mark my third Mother's Day in Japan. I won't get a Mother's Day brunch or flowers from my hubs. At most, I'll sit my sidekick down and together we'll make me a card. That's because Mother's Day in Japan is strictly for celebrating your own mother, not the mother of your children. I'll... Continue Reading →


The one where she talks about giving birth in Japan

Yeah, it's been 2 1/2 years since my sidekick joined us, but it still makes for a good story. First, a little background info. For every 1,000 births in Japan 2 infants don't make it. This puts them number one in the world for lowest infant mortality rates. Go Japan! Why do you suppose that... Continue Reading →

Tokyo Pride 2017 with a Toddler

As a parent, my mind is consumed by thoughts of what kind of a person my child will grow into. I realize it is, to some unknown extent, beyond my control, but in the meantime I will do everything in my power to show her the richness of diversity; that society divides us all into... Continue Reading →

Recent 100 yen shop purchases

I am not ashamed to admit that my sidekick and I make weekly trips to 100 yen shops to pick out various doodads and thing-a-ma-jigs we don't need. Sometimes we experience buyer's remorse, but sometimes we also come away with little items that end up enriching our lives. We've made three such purchases over the... Continue Reading →

The reason my garlic is black.

It is Golden Week--a series of public holidays--here in Japan. So, we took a trip to the countryside to visit relatives. Nothing like sipping on a cold beer while gazing out the huge patio window onto the surrounding farmlands, pregnant with wheat and gobou. Such a stark contrast with our tiny Tokyo apartment, where I never open... Continue Reading →

Tonjiru for the soul.

Chances are if you have ever traveled or lived abroad you truly appreciate the importance of comfort food. Does it strike anyone else how favorite comfort foods from home are so difficult to buy or replicate abroad? What gives? Or maybe it's a reverse psychological effect "gimme what I can't get" deal. Smoked bacon, pepperjack... Continue Reading →

There are beans on my ice cream.

Not just any ol' beans, but sweet azuki beans combined with all the contents of a canned fruit cocktail. And it's not ice cream, per say, but shaved ice smothered in condensed milk. Originally from Kagoshima, it is called Shirokuma, which means polar bear in Japanese. When dessert comes around there are usually two roads you... Continue Reading →

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