Kokeshi Dolls


May 7, 2012

_DSC0184I think Japanese Kokeshi dolls are the THE SWEETEST. You can find some lovelies at this Etsy shop. You know if you’ve been hanging with me for awhile about my great love for all-things-Japanese. Not sure why exactly, I’ve been entranced with everything Asian inspired since I was a little girl. Maybe helped along by living in Hawaii, I don’t know. At any rate, I really can’t get enough!

_DSC0180_DSC0183_DSC0181I picked up ‘Yumi’ by Annelore Parot awhile back and was saving it to give to Julia on Children’s Day. I’d had my eye on this book and also ‘Kimonos’ by Miss Annelore for quite some time. After much agonizing, I got ‘Yumi’ instead of ‘Kimonos’ simply because I thought Julia would like the pictures of the pets, but it was a tough, tough decision to make. (And check out her other books!)

Lots of flaps to lift and peek-thru pictures…my favorite picture in the whole book did not photograph well (beautiful carp kites hanging from a tree and the carp are individually cut out so that they flutter on the tree, SO AWESOME; I was crushed not to be able show it to you.) You’re gonna have to take my word that it’s fab.

_DSC0173_DSC0174The book is the prefect complement to these little Kokeshi dolls that we have. The one with pink hair is named ‘Strawberry Peach’. The little one is named Eraser Girl, because she is a tiny eraser. Ok I just named her that just now.

They are having a little strawberry milk snack. Also an eraser. Might taste a bit rubbery.

(You can find Momiji Kokeshi Dolls here, they run about $12 each. This is the line where our pink haired doll came from. They have Hello Kitty dolls too! This set of 6 Japanese eraser Kokeshi dolls goes for $6. And if you love erasers or tiny play food, I found a TON of food shaped erasers.)

I’d love to pick up this paper Kokeshi dool craft kit from Djeco – I think Julia’s fine motor might be not quite ready for this – but I’m thinking I should pick one up while they are still around and just save them until she’s ready… IT’S ALWAYS BEST TO BE PREPARED, I say.

Cool Stuff I Like (Stuff I Want for Mom's Day!)


May 4, 2012

Hey Peeps! Did you have a great first week of May? Did you all have a chance to check out our May Day flower baskets that we made? Remember when I told you about Children's Day? I am full of questions today, apparently. Well at Julia's school, they made hanging fish in art class to celebrate Children's Day! I hung it next to her rainbow bird and the back door is very colorful indeed. (In stark contrast to the GREY GREYNESS outside. Yesterday it was 52 and it rained for about 6 hours straight. If I could see the weather right now I'd kick it in the shin. Is that wrong?)

I decided that this week I would make a list of things that I'd be happy to receive for Mother's Day (are you listening Andrew??) as well as some yay May! items that made me happy to see...

COOL STUFF for the first week of May, I'd like any of the following (Yo. Andrew.):

Tea Towels. Either these, these or some of these.

Tamasin Day Lewis' new cookbook.

Cookies from Whimsy & Spice.

Or Japanese bath salts.

And here's just some awesome stuff that I saw that was awesome:

Rhubarb cake that also has marshmallows. Gross or good?

Ways to celebrate May!

Cool Book of the Week: I have gone on record with my EXTREME Polly Dunbar adoration before, but I have to mention her again, because Julia pulled 'Goodnight Tiptoe' off the shelf the other night for story time. So, so cute. The cute quotient is OH SO HIGH in these books. I love them so much! Toddlers will looooooove these and Julia, who is a beginning reader, loves to read books like this to us.

Goodnight, Tiptoe
Goodnight, Tiptoe

Have a lovely weekend! If it's not raining (notice how I preface everything with that phrase...), we're going to go examine little wee sea creatures because it's low tide and all the star fishies will be out and about. And I'll be reminding Andrew ten million times that MOTHER'S DAY is coming up....


Whole Living


May 3, 2012

Whole Living is one of my favorite magazines. Healthy things, good ideas, recipes -- I always feel better after I sit down with an issue. I'm not sure why I love magazines so much. I don't regularly purchase hardly any of them anymore but I used to subscribe to a whole fleet. Seriously, back in the day when I used to get Domino and Cookie -- happy times! And when I got Victoria mag (WAY back in the day), I used to feel the same way -- my favorite magazines arriving were totally like presents in the mail.

I used to have a subscription to Whole Living, but I let it lapse, now I just grab it when an issue looks particularly intriguing -- trying to cut down on my clutter and expenses, you know how it goes. But I grabbed the latest issue, it was speaking to me. 

So many cool things this month...tons of gardening tips and recipes using garden veggies, as well as some great book suggestions. 'The Uninvited Guests' by Sadie Jones looks like a really super cool book. I think I need to start thinking about my Summer Reading and this one just jumped to the top o' the list. Its been described as a cross between Downton Abbey and the Twilight Zone, set in England, with a few ghosts thrown in. OH YEAH, I'M SO THERE!

There's an article about clutter that I'm going to read a few half dozen times. I'm always fighting the clutter battle. Always. So I had to get a magazine that talks about clutter, while the sad fact is that the magazine itself will add to my clutter. The irony.

Anyone else out there a magazine junkie? Which ones do you like?

May Flowers


May 2, 2012

We surprised some of our neighborhood friends with May Day flowers  -- I think they were really surprised! My kiddo was actually at home recovering from a cold, so I had extra help making the paper cone basket thingamabobs. She picked out everything herself and had the grandest time making her sneaky stealth deliveries and hanging the baskets on the door knobs of her pals.

The rainbow basket we saved; just couldn't part with it.

I think leaving flowers for people on May Day is SO much fun and why have I never done it before ever in my life? FUN, I tell you!

Children's Day


May 1, 2012

Isn't this print glorious? Artist Stasia Burrington created this gorgeous piece of work and you can find it in her adorable Etsy shop.

Perfect for Children's Day!

Children's Day is a national holiday in Japan, that takes place on May 5. Basically it's a day to celebrate children in all their individual glory and to promote their happiness! When I was growing up in Hawaii, Girls' Day and Boys' Day were celebrated as separate festivals. I remember being driven home from school and seeing house after house with carp kites flying outside the front doors (indicating the number on sons in a household), or seeing traditional Japanese dolls and kimonos displayed in house windows.

Now apparently, both Girls' Day and Boys' Day have been combined into one celebration honoring all children (and their mothers!). Some folks still celebrate them separately, so take your pick. My motto? Celebrate everything.

This darling Koinobori carp hanging from Harabu House comes in 5 other colors and would make the most fun piece of decor in a child's room! $38. I'm thinking of the pink one for Julia...

Kintaro's Adventures and Other Japanese Children's Favorite Stories
I talked about 'Kintaro's Adventures' by Florence Sakade before in this post, but I wanted to mention it again because it's tradition on Children's Day to read about Kintaro (a Japanese folk hero).

It's also tradition to eat this sweet treat:

Mochi! You can order this sweet and chewy rice flour confection, in RAINBOW COLORS, which is fab and rad.

Whatever you feel like doing on May 5... give your kiddos an extra big kissy and squeeze!

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