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:-)