May 31, 2009

weekend 05

on saturday, we went shopping in the morning. and on the way home, we stopped to check a new opened car dealer. yes, we went to see MINI. one of my dream cars. the other one is NEW BEATLE. i love these two. so much. so much. we had fun looking at cars and listing to the salesman there. Kp tested MINI COOPER S. it was fun. and tonight, he was reading the catalog, and i joined him... someday. someday. someday...

and tonight, i cooked curry and rice. Kp's favorite. i love spicy food and so does he.
it's easy to cook. lots of onions, carrots and potatoes. cut them, fly them, and boil them until they are cooked. and add curry roux. if you boil longer, it tastes better.

popular menu for children, too. and one of my favorite, too. i added flied eggplant and asparagus, too. before we eat, we say itadakimasu. it means we thank for the food. and for the people who made the vegetables and others. and we say gochisousama after we finish eating. it is more for the person who cooked the dishes. we say it together. but once Kp said to me that i should say osomatsusama. kind of saying, thank you for eating. or oh it's nothing special but thank you. i love seeing moms teaching their children say itadakimasu and gochisousama. we say that with everyone in a class at kindergarten, elementary, and junior high school, too. yes, it is our culture. and it is what i love.

May 29, 2009

shop news :: 300th item

for the customer who have bought 300th item, i would like to give you this fabric as a gift.
thank you all your support:) i will keep trying to introduce as much as great fabric i find here in Japan!

May 25, 2009

Happy Birthday :: 10% off sale

today 25th and 29th are two of my best friends' birthday.
they are both moms. they both have daughters. adorable daughters.
lucky them:) i've known them since elementary school or junior high school. i am lucky.

May is special month to me. my best friends' birthday and mine. also, my parents' adorable doggy, M-chan's birthday is same as mine. birthday month.
i decided today that i will have a birthday sale only for you. from tomorrow, 26th 0:00am in japan until 28th midnight in japan, before R's birthday.
please type the code : happy birthday O and R
in the message to the seller box when you make a purchase. then i will give you 10% off of items(except for books) before shipping cost. i will refund you after i get paid.
i hope they have wonderful birthdays. happy birthday O and R!
and oh dear! my friend had just announced that he has a daughter now. and she was born on 25th. wow, my mom's due date was 25th of may, too. well, i was planning on coming to this world on 25th but i came earlier. hehehe 25th of may.... it is a special special day to me! maybe more than my birthday, the first... happy happy birthday everyone!!!

May 24, 2009

what i love :: cafe

a cup of tea makes a day special sometimes. going to cafes is one of my favorite time. cafes are so popular these days. more and more cafes opening here in Japan. japanese style cafe, modern style cafe, dog cafe or cat cafe where you can take your pets to cafes and let them meet others, inaka (the country side) cafe where you cannot find it easy but it has a great view and so quiet and relaxing place for people who lives in the city, organic food cafe, and more.... sometimes you can find some great treasure at cafes, too. some cafes sell zakka, their handmade cookies, zakka, and more. it is like a tresure hunt for your seacret hiding place.

and this is my favorite inaka cafe so far. love their cakes so much! often sold out quickly. their lunch is great, too. i love japanese cakes. they are not so sweet. not much sugar. looks great. and taste delicious! my mom found this inaka cafe from her friend. and my sister also found this from a popular magazine for cafes. i love the atomosphere there. the workers. and a mini market of handmade wooden zakka and some plants. the view is nice, too. it's a great place to relax and refresh. so many people live on a small land, that makes the city side so busy and stressful sometimes. i love inaka. just love it. if you have any chance to come to japan, kyoto is traditional and wonderful. and tokyo is fun and modern. but where ever you go, i recommend and hope you will have time to go to have a cup of coffee at cafe, too.

May 22, 2009

shop news :: update

i've updated some fabric that i found. and i love. in my shop.
hopefully you will find something you love, too.

May 21, 2009

last night :: time flies

time flies. so fast. feels like too fast sometimes. and wondered if we are flying as fast as it is.

we were thinking about our past and future last night. i received my be lated birthday present. and we were thinking about our age. in two years from now, it will be 10 years since the fast time we met at our university. doesn't seem that long. but we have been together for 8 years and couple months now. time flies so so fast.

seemed like our wedding was couple months ago and just an big event for us. but any other moment we'd spent was not touching so deep as this moment. i gave Kp surprise presents. and he cried even more. i've never seen him crying before. just on the day we got married was the only day he let me see his tears. happy tears.
i said good-bye to my last name. and became his. we slowly started our new life. just two of us. as a family. but when we looked up, there were many people sitting there looking at us. just for us. so thankful. and happy. we will remember the day and will never forget. and will keep walking slowly and slowly. arigato to all of them who we have met... and excited to meet someone new like you! just cannot believe it's been over a year now. oh, time flies!

May 17, 2009

weekend 04

this weekend, we had lots to do. Kp was tired from last week. working straight for 5 days. which is not normal for him. he get's week days off sometimes and his holidays are irregular. but this month, his holidays are on weekends. as to say thank you for working hard, i bought sashimi(raw fish) for dinner. we drink miso soup for dinner or breakfast. at my parents' house, we had miso soup and rice everyday, traditional japanese style. Kp had toast for breakfast, western style. after we got married, because it is healthier to eat rice and miso soup, we decided to have them as our family style. we both love sushi and sashimi(raw fish). they were delicious. we had maguro(tuna) and buri(yellowtail). so oishii(yummy)!

then our new bed arrived to our apartment. and Kp put them together. i helped. but mostly, it was his job.

we were sleeping on futon on the floor. it is a japanese style. you might wonder why we can sleep on such none soft soft soft place like beds. i don't know how to explain. it is just because we are japanese.

about a month ago, we found this tatami bed. so we can put futon on and sleep at night. and during the day, we can fold futon and we can use the bed as a tatami floored space. with the tatami bed, there are two drawers under it. which is great. we get two extra space to put away our stuff. oh, the wood smells so good and so does tatami. we were so excited. we organized so many other things, too. and Kp had a new idea for my work space. he draw pictures and made a stand for our computer. it was first time he made me something. and i was so happy. and it looks great. and it feels so good to sleep on. we enjoyed our first tatami bed last night.

May 15, 2009

shop news :: win 200

thank you so much for the customers who have shopped at my little shop and who have been checking my little shop. i'd like to giveaway one unit of this japanese cotton plaid fabric to a customer who bought 200th item from my shop. thank you so much for all of you who have been checking my shop. i will try to find more great fabric from shops in Japan! Arigato(thank you) :)

May 14, 2009

japanese culture :: senbazuru

senbazuru is strings of one thousand origami(paper) cranes. we say if we fold one thousand origami cranes with wish, the wish will come true. so, we fold them one by one by wishing recorvery for someone's illness. or we wish for the world peace.

a week ago, when i went to Kp's parents house, his mom was folding them. his dad's co-worker is in the hospital, so they decided to fold them and give him as a present. i haven't fold them for a while and i forgot how to fold one crane. but as i was trying, fingers taught me how to start folding it. and thanks to my grandma who i had lived with and had passed away when i was four, taught me lots, i remembered most of the part. however, in some parts, my fingers stopped and couldn't get the right way, then Kp's mom taught me with smile. i loved the time. so much. feeling one of the japanese culture. and remembering my grandma. and wishing the person who i don't know's good health by folding some cranes with mother-in-low.

this picture is from Hiroshima. i've visited the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Musium about five years ago. there were tons of senbazuru hanging there. for world peace. so beautiful. those wishes makes them even more beautiful.

when i was teaching English at an elementary school, students there were folding them for a police officer who was accidently killed by a man. the idea was the students'. such lovely idea.
children are good at folding origami. they fold during their break time between classes. not only senbazuru. balls, animals, charactors, planes and more. students often gave me to show their love towards me by folding them. even boys. so cute! and i got tons and tons of them on the last day of the school year. folding origami is great for their brains, too. i hope this kind of culture will be taught to younger ones from generations to generations. if i could become a mother, i would teach my children how to fold origami and i will ask their grandma to teach them, too. that will be a wonderful memory for the little ones...

May 11, 2009

weekend 03

it was a surprising morning we spent. i opened our small window to get fresh air. then i sew a black flying object coming towards me! and i bended my knees to hide and protect myself. it was a swallow! came to visit our apartment. she is the one in the picture:) Kp tried to let the swallow go outside. i was there laying on the floor hoping she will be okay and get out from our apartment without getting hurt from hitting herself to the window or walls. saying "we won't hurt you. this way, please come this way. " i was not brave enough... sorry, Kp. but thank you. the cute visitor left after couple of minutes. we were pleased that she found a way out. phew...
we knew later that she was looking for a place to make her house for her babies. we found a mark on the wall of our apartment. there is a saying here that if swallows make their houses and raise children of your house, it means the house is a happy good one. i hope she will find a great spot though:)

after the visiter Kp and i went on a one day trip to Lake Motosu. to see lovely Mt. Fuji and shibazakura with my parents. it took 3 hours driving to get there. Kp and i took turns to drive. it was the longest drive for M-chan. i was so glad that she loves driving. so my parents can take her with them. she makes the trip much memorable one.

oh, the view of Mt. Fuji was great. no cloud. nice spring weather. my parents were so happy about that. and i was so happy about that, too. filial piety. yes, i try to do that as much as we can. time flies. so fast. so i want to enjoy the time.

and on sunday, Kp and i found a lovely flower to give Kp's mom.
we left the flower plant without letting her know. just left the plant and a small thank you card.
it was around lunch time. they were not home. and we went back to our apartment. relaxing. but no email nor phone call from her. during we were watching a movie. i got a phone call from her. it was almost 23:00pm. saying thank you. and sorry for not realized sooner. hehehe. so i guess she didn't see it when she got home. but i guess our little surprise went perfect!

May 8, 2009

thinking about mom

mother's day is soon. i went to look for a gift for my mom. i know what she loves.

this is preserved flower that i decolated before. i went to a class once with my mom and i learned and did it by myself. it's one of my hobby now. it is popular to give these flowers as a gift in Japan these days. to give carnations is still the most common gift for mother's day. i thought about decolating preserved flowers for her. but i know she likes to get different things rather than flowers. something usuful. something she looks good. she is a young mom for my age. maybe that is why!? hehehe.

so, i found her a nice skirf. thinking about which clothes will look good with the skirf. thinking about her smiling face. sometimes it is difficult to say 'thank you'. i guess because i am japanese. we are more shy, especialy guys that i think. when i was in Canada, i sew my friends expressing their love towards mom, friends and other people. the way we express is different. well, there must be some people who can express their love directly to others. but for lots of people in japan is not the same. so i was a little culture shocked in a good way.

i still have to find something for Kp's mom. it is still difficult for me... i gave her her a charm of her birthday stone. with her gurdian stone. i need Kp's help but he doesn't know much about what she loves neither. hmmm... wish me luck;) hopefully i will find something nice for her, too.
so this weekend, i will try my best to express how thankful i am. and we are. for lots of love she gave me. and lots of chances. lots of 'thank you' for understanding about what i chose to do.

May 6, 2009

what i love :: tapes

i am in love with two different kinds of tapes these days...
one is sewing tape. yes, i love them. i couldn't resist buying them. dangerous. i know.
there are so many cute zakka over here in Japan. these are shinzi katoh linen sewing tapes. shinzi katoh is very popular and i love his zakka so much. they are everywhere. cute items gives me smile. just adorable. i will keep some for myself and will use them for something. some little present for my friends' children. such cute tapes he designes!

and this is my new favorite items added to my list recently. they are called masking tape. used for painting and known for that to many people. the color was just yellow before. because it was only for painting. but there are so many different colors and designes these days. and people use them for collage, scrapbooking, wrapping, decorating, and more... they stick over and over. on walls, on papers, on lots of things. i taped my things to do memo and my favorite photo on the wall on the other day. they are made from washi paper. and i am a bit proud that they are japanese. they are quite popular and i see them every zakka shops, too. dangerous! so dangerous.

May 5, 2009

japanese culture :: kodomo no hi

good morning! today is kodomo no hi (children's day). it is also boys' day. to cereblate their happiness. my parents didn't have any boys, so we don't have anything to decorate. the 2nd picture is a decolation called hina dolls for girls day, March 3rd. this is just a top part of the decolation. there are 7 stairs more and there are more dolls and some other decorations. it is my mom's and she gave them to my sister and me. it's a quite old one. and we love that. my grandma has her memories about her children, and my mom has her memories of us and herself looking at it when she was little. i love children so much. i taught them English at an English school and elementary school. i went to New Zealand to learn their education at a day care center. oh, dear. i love children. i hope someday, our turn will come. fingers are crossed.

for those who came from my little shop, chokichoki, i will give you 10% off discount of fabric(before shipping) until midnight tonight. japanese time. if you could write the code 'kodomo no hi' and something about children in the message to the seller box. maybe the cutest episode/memory of your children? or when you were little? or what was your dream when you were little? i hope i can hear some cute episodes from you! happy shopping:)

May 1, 2009


it was my birthday. it was one of my favorite birthday. i woke up and worked. when i went outside to leave for my parents house, i saw a little paper bag hanging on the door knob. i saw a card. it was for me. from a girlfriend. such sweet surprise present she gave me. happy tears came down. thank you Tae-chan.

when i went to my parents house to organize a room for a work office, my dad came home early from work and helped me. he is super busy with his work always and i haven't done anything with him for a long time. my grandpa, 87, also helped me. i was a bit worried about his back but he wanted to help. thank you, ojiichan(grandpa)!! M-chan welcomed me and we said happy birthday to both of us. yes, it was her birthday, too. she turned 3.

for dinner, Kp came home early from work and took me to my new favorite Italian restaurant.

my friend recommended there to me and i love the food and the music and the owner and everything. it's such a cute little restaurant and it became my dad's favorite, too.

after we got home. Kp was kind of excited. i didn't see the box. Kp told me to look. cute cake was inside. with a cute little chocolate plate says "Harun, happy birthday". it was a warm, kind of a hot day. i was born on Friday and it was Friday today. same situation as when i was born... it turned a great birthday. thank you, Kp. thank you everyone.