立川 Wired Cafe Tachikawa

I fell in love with this restaurant when in Tachikawa!  I first discovered it when I went in 2007 my first time in Japan. I went back in 2009 looking for it and was starting to get worried it wasn’t there, thing was I was in the wrong building. I finally found it and got my favorite thing, french toast with honey walnut syrup! If your ever in get the chance to eat there and like sweets, give that a try!

http://www.cafecompany.co.jp/brands/wired/tachikawa

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愛 Dinner at iron chef Morimoto’s and an engagement ring!

So last night my boyfriend and I were enjoying a nice dinner at iron chef Morimoto’s restaurant. I got to order my my favorite sushi appetizer which is ume(pickled plum) , shiso(Japanese mint) and cucumber. I offered some to my boyfriend but he really didn’t want any which struck me as odd because he loves it just as much as I do. So he took one and saved it for dinner after I kept insisting.

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So dinner came out and i got my duck duck duck meal as they call it. It looked so tasty! Rate when I was ready to eat my boyfriend said ‘wait, I have to do something before we eat!’. He fumbled around for what I thought was his phone to get a photo maybe but then he was down on his knee asking me to marry him! I was so excited I must of said yes a million times before he could even finish asking the question. I swear the whole back of the restaurant got quiet where we were sitting during that moment. The silence finally broke when our waiter brought us some pink sparkling wine. I thought I was going to fall out of my seat from the excitement but finally got some appetite back to eat a bite of my meal after I realized I wasn’t dreaming.

My now fiancé and I were so giddy, we couldn’t even completely eat our food for a while. We both felt like we were under water. After we finally finished our meal we both got desert with a candle for each of us. I got the peach ice cream. It was mixed with fresh peaches, not like the ones in store-bought ice cream where it’s hard as a rock. So that was my amazing night at my favorite Japanese restaurant.

This is the ring he had custom made for me.

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占星術 astrology of Japan… A place for the creative

Now some of you may be thinking how does astrology and Japan go together besides the horoscope section in magazines (by the way those are a waste of time, to get an actual answer of what’s happening find an astrologer to give you an accurate reading). Every country has a ruler of one of the 12 zodiac signs and so does each city. Japan happens to be ruled by Libra, the sign of the scales. This is why it seems to be such a creative country. Also Libra is the sign of balance and harmony, if you notice this is country with both old and new. Say Kyoto old tradition and on the other side modern Tokyo. They are each one side of the Libra scales. Japan is also based on respect, which is also Libra. The traditional sign of Libra would never speak out of place and would go along like everything is ok, even of its not.

Now Tokyo is ruled by the sign of Cancer. Cancer is the sign of home which makes sense since Tokyo is Japan’s modern capital. Plus this busy, bustling city is home for a good portion of Japan’s population. Cancer is also an imaginative sign… so that’s how they think of all the unusual and useful things!

So the combo of living in Tokyo, Japan would be the perfect place for the creative. Maybe that’s why I love Japan so much, I’m Cancer sun with a Libra moon. (by the way everyone has more then just a sun sign, there’s the moon and all the planets, time of birth, asteroids, etc.)

Note- I got the info about the ruler of Japan and Tokyo form typing in google ‘astrology rulers of countries and cities’ or something like that. If you want to look up another country type that in google and some sites should pop up with a list. I interpreted the signs myself, that the website doesn’t tell you. If you have a question about a sign just leave me a comment. I’d be happy to answer!

つぶつぶ いちご Heart shaped Pocky

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The other day I found heart shaped Pocky (pronounced poke eeeee!, for those that don’t know Japanese pronunciation) at the asian market that I could not pass up. I couldn’t wait to get home and eat them either. When I got home I opened them and devoured 2 of the 3 packs inside. Because of the special heart shape it made them extra crunchy too! Plus it had berry bits. Yum! It reminded me of a mixed berry one I had years ago with the berry bits. I realized the name for these bits are translated into the word “pebbly” which is tsubutsu つぶつぶ thats on the package. If you come across them please try them, I promise their super yummy!

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えいが Maiko Haaaan!!!

So I stumbled across this movie on ondemand and of course it caught my attention since I love maiko. It was released in 2007 and stars actor Sadao Abe. It’s a funny plot of how he loves maiko and dreams of one day getting the chance to spend time with them, which he does, but quite a few unfortunate events seem to stop him at first. The story also unfolds into a competition with a rival who has more money to spend on maiko then him, so what’s he do? Finds new ways to make more money of course. Can’t forget the girlfriend he dumps because she’s not from Kyoto, that part gets interesting in the story too.

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It’s an extremely funny movie. If you like watching movies in Japanese (of course there’s subtitles) give it a go! I’m sure you’ll love it! Let me know what you think of the movie!

てがみ A gift from Japan

After writing a letter in Japanese for practice to my friend and her mom in Japan, I received a nice letter back and an extra birthday gift from them. We always exchange Christmas and birthday gifts ever year, but I guess I get an extra one this year since they already sent me one last month for my birthday. My friends mom sent me a nice letter back in English saying how when it’s hot she likes to put up a Japanese wind chime. So she sent me one to try since she says it feels much cooler when she hears it chime. My friend also sent me a letter back in Japanese asking how i am and about my dogs. It’s fun knowing I can write the basics in Japanese and feels like I have come quite a ways since when I first started studying.

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なべ sukiyaki

So I attempted to make sukiyaki for the first time, it looked nice but was a little bland. I put lotus root, daikon, carrots, enoki, king oyster mushrooms, bok choy, onion, shirataki noodles and steak. I also put steamed mussels in my bowl since not many people like mussels. For the base- water, soy sauce, mirin and sherry since I didn’t have sake. I also forgot to put dashi in. I fried the vegetables in sesame oil before boiling too. If anyone knows how to spice it up and add more flavor please let me know.

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Here it is without the meat and broth.

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I put mussels in mine because their one of my favorites.

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侍 Samurai

Here’s a photo of a photo I took at my friends grandparents house in Japan of some samurai. It was really cool to see this hanging in their tatami room. If I remember, her grandfather said that photo was of the famous samurai of that time.

京都 Maiko and maybe a Geisha will make your night in Kyoto, even if it’s just a snap shot!

These are some photos from when I was in Japan for the first time in 2007. I was traveling with my mom and my friend from Tokyo 東京. When we got to Kyoto 京都 the first thing my mom and I wanted to see wear kimono clad women everywhere, we saw a few everyday women dressed in kimono which made me happy, but as for my mom it wasn’t enough, we had to see the geisha. My friend from Tokyo 東京 did want to be out at night in an area she didn’t know, plus she thought we were going on a wild goose chase along with the whole hotel staff. In this geisha quest we also meant seeing a maiko would do, but at the time I never knew the difference between maiko and geisha(or as locals call them geiko).

The key differences between them is the maiko dresses more colorfully and decorative then her, as they call it, “older sister”. A geisha becomes an older sister by taking on a maiko as her understudy and when they come of a certain age or are ready they become a geisha after a ceremony. There is also a ceremony to bind them as sisters as well.

So after arriving in Gion(one of the geisha districts) my mom and I were on the look out for geisha/maiko along with a few other tourist. As you can see I found a few maiko and maybe the one in the car was a geisha since she was being escorted by a few men and didn’t have any decorative head pieces on. Also below I have a a photo I took of the shoes under the doorway and a photo of the entrance where the geisha walked out of. It was quite a fun night!

宇多田ヒカル a Japanese music video I forgot how much I loved

Here’s the song traveling by Utada Hikaru. I forgot how much I loved this song. Oh the joy of rediscovery.

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