Japan PhotoDiary Spring 2014

japanphotodiary14_1The crossing at Hachiko in Shibuya remains pretty much unchanged since last year.

After spending 3-and-a-half weeks in Tokyo in February and March this year, I wanted to share some of the photos I took. Since the reason we went was for me to take care of my mother who was hospitalized, I wasn’t able to travel anywhere else with my family or spend much time outside of my mother’s apartment or the hospital. So this time around I didn’t take a large number of photos like I had in previous years, but I still was able to take a few shots. Here is my travel diary from Japan during early Spring this year:

japanphotodiary14_2 japanphotodiary14_3A little felted puppy mascot my son nicknamed “Cookie.” I bought a little needle felting kit the day after arriving and brought it to my mom’s place to work on since I didn’t have much access to the Internet for the first week or so.


Little collage of some yummy food. From top left, clockwise: I love me some Cheezas! 65% are the best.; Asparagus frittata with anchovies at Starbucks (seriously, why can’t they serve that in the U.S.??!); some healthy meals I cooked for my mom (she can’t have anything with high vitamin K, like dark leafy greens, so I stuck to a brown/white palette)japanphotodiary14_5An ad on the train for tomato-flavored beer.japanphotodiary14_6I thought this was amusing. George Clooney’s face, with “キモチイイ” (“that feels gooooood”) next to it. I’m not quite sure what he’s referring to.japanphotodiary14_7Lines waiting for the trains at rush hour.japanphotodiary14_8 japanphotodiary14_9 japanphotodiary14_10At the hospital, near the counters there were these clips for people who use canes. How convenient!japanphotodiary14_11japanphotodiary14_12Green Peas pachinko, which I always pass on my way to shopping mecca Lumine-2 in Shinjuku.japanphotodiary14_13An amusing name for a shopping center. Perhaps Japanese people are particularly religious about their shopping? (;-)japanphotodiary14_14Was impressed by this: a completely LED touch panel drink machine. The wave of the future.japanphotodiary14_15It just so happened that I was visiting during Shibuya Fashion Week, when a number of smaller and independent brands open pop-up shops. I wished I could have stayed for the presentation and to browse and take photos, but I only had about 30 minutes til I had to get back.japanphotodiary14_17 japanphotodiary14_18My sister-in-law and I went to a restaurant that was famous for its baum kuchen. You don’t see these German ring desserts much in the U.S., but they’re quite commonplace in Japan.japanphotodiary14_19 japanphotodiary14_20A couple shots from my Instagram: from Top Left, clockwise: Sakura-flavored Haagen Dazs (yummy! and tasted like a plum!); another needle-felted creation: “Puchi”) caramel and milk tea-flavored melon pan, and an awesome guide to tons of craft shopping and supplies in the Tokyo/Yokohama area.japanphotodiary14_21When I’m in Japan, I always splurge on junk food that comes in cool flavors. Top photo: Milky-flavored Country Ma’am cookies, cheese sable cookies, rose-flavored gummies, plum-flavored potato Jagariko, and fruit assortment Chelsea yogurt scotches. Bottom photo: chicken teriyaki-flavored Pizza Potato chips, rum raisin Meltykiss Whips, and super-sour plum Haichu.

japanphotodiary14_23While I was there I was able to set up my mother with a home health care team, including a home physical therapist and an assistant to help her with household chores and shopping, as well as a meal delivery service. She is definitely doing better and working on regaining strength in her right leg, and walking with a cane – which is fantastic. Thank you so much to everyone who sent kind thoughts and positive words our way!! My mother so appreciated it:-)



2 Comments on Japan PhotoDiary Spring 2014

  1. Pat schwab
    4.01.2014 at 3:07 am (1 year ago)

    Great photos. We sometimes go to the Asian market and get pocky sticks and those beverages with the marble in the bottles are cool. We have also had Mochi ( their version of a frozen treat). I know they make this with a bean paste. Have you tried all of these? It’s fun to walk around the Asian market and pick out some interesting treats. My son has made us the noodles ( Sobu) with dipping sauce and miso soup and they have these delicious dumplings. I think I got all the names right. Now I’m thinking I need to go shopping . Pat

    • carlyjcais
      4.01.2014 at 4:27 pm (1 year ago)

      Thanks so much, Pat! I lock Pocky too, and those beverages (Ramune) – they taste so good on a hot Summer day! Yes, we usually shop at the Japanese market once a week while we live here in the U.S.; I cook Japanese meals a couple times a week (though probably cook more American mostly since it’s less prep). Yes, those noodles you refer to with the dipping sauce are Soba. Buckwheat – so good for thinning and purifying the blood! You’re making me hungry :-)


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