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Gifts for the Pokemon Go! Fanatic

21 Jul PokemonGifts

 

Never in a million years would I have guessed that my family would be addicted to a Pokemon app on the phone. My kids have never even seen the TV show (and neither have I) but we downloaded the game (Pokemon Go!) to see what all the fuss was about and… we love it. Most electronic games tend to isolate individuals but we have found that our family has bonded over hunting for Pokemon. We have visited many parks and attractions in our city and have walked more than usual! My 6-year old son will talk your ear off about Pokemon Go! if you will let him. I have never seen him so passionate about something, lol. I am thinking we might have to dress up as Pokemon for Halloween, haha!

Thinking ahead to back-to-school shopping, birthday gifts, and holidays, I already have some Pokemon-related gift ideas for my kids. I added some of these things to my Amazon Store. Take a peek if you also have a Pokemon fanatic in your life! Here are some of the items I’m considering purchasing:

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Pokemon Colored Pencils, 24-Pack

We have some other colored pencils by Showa Note and they are very high-quality (much better than the generic kinds you find in the stores here!). They come in a durable tin container.

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Pokemon Furikake (rice seasoning)

My kids LOVE furikake on their rice. I love these individual-sized packs. They’re perfect for including in bento lunches.

 

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Pokemon Name Stickers

I use these every year for labeling all my kids’ back-to-school supplies. They’re great for pencil boxes, water bottles, notebooks, etc.

 

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Pokemon Opposites Card Game

This game will teach children hantai-kotoba (opposites), in Japanese. Looks cute! I need all the help I can get in the teaching-vocabulary department.

 

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Pokemon Chopsticks-Spoon-Fork Set

I love these things. They are the perfect size for little kids. No more using disposable utensils for lunch boxes! And at just $5, a great price.

 

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Pokemon Deluxe Essential Handbook

I know my son would eat this book right up.

 

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Pokemon Japanese-Style Pencil Box

I loved these pencil boxes when I was little. They have a magnetic closure and hold pencils, erasers, etc securely inside.

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Pokemon Hat

Just cute for your Pokemon-lover!

 

Lots MORE Pokemon gift ideas at my store!

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I am an Amazon Affiliate and will receive a small percentage of each purchase. ありがとう!

My Amazon Store also has Japanese School Supplies, Japanese Food, Books, etc!

 

Style Trend: Kimonos!

20 Feb

I’ve noticed lately on sites such as Pinterest that kimono-inspired clothes are trending for little fashionistas! It is about time… kimonos are just so adorable on little kids. You can find a pattern and make your own if you are a seamstress, or buy from Etsy sellers or even big stores like Old Navy. I love having my kids wear jinbei’s (casual lightweight kimonos) during the summer months.

Here are some cute kimono styles I found online! (I am NOT affiliated or sponsored by any of these stores)

 

Old Navy Printed Tee and Pants Set (comes in other colors):

 

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Children’s Kimono Cardigan by BusySpinningThread

 

 

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Asian Cross-Front Dress by OllieBeans

 

 

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Jibei Set by SpurTheMoment

 

 

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Girls Yukata by Uniqlo

 

 

 

 

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What do you think of these styles? I love them! They’re perfect for summer parties and festivals.

 

 

 

 

Japanese Children’s Clothes from Uniqlo

26 Jul

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When we visited Japan last year, I visited a Uniqlo store for the first time, and loved it! Their clothing is inexpensive without sacrificing quality. They have great basics as well as more fashionable items. Over the past year, several more stores have opened in the U.S. (mostly along the coasts) and they have opened their online store. The clothing for adults have been hit-or-miss for me (the sizing is hard for me to figure out) but I highly recommend the kid’s clothes from Uniqlo!

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Here are some children’s shirts I ordered most recently. They were all $5.90 on sale. I tried to get some gender-neutral ones so both my son and daughter can wear them.  They fit great and wash well– great for playing in! I love that Uniqlo collaborates with different companies and designers for their designs. Many Japanese characters (Rilakkuma, Sanrio) are featured on their clothing.

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My daughter is loving this Koala’s March (コアラのマーチ) T-shirt.

Just thought some of you readers might be interested! If you have a store near you, I am jealous!

Dandelion Crowns たんぽぽのかんむり

10 May

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Is anyone else’s neighborhood full of (pesky) dandelions (たんぽぽ)? Weeding is one of my least favorite things to do– so to be honest, I’m not very fond of dandelions. Many people in Japan, however, think dandelions are “cute”! My daughter loves them too, and always picks me a dandelion bouquet.

Last week, I decided to “make lemonade out of lemons” and turn these weeds into something pretty. My daughter and I collected the biggest dandelions in our yard and made flower crowns. It was a very fun bonding experience, and she LOVED her crown!

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I didn’t take step-by-step photos, but these are simple to make. First, make a small slit about an inch below a dandelion head using your fingernails. Then take a second dandelion and pull the stem through the first dandelion’s slit. Then make a slit in the second dandelion’s stem, and repeat until you have the desired length. We trimmed our dandelion stems so they were only about 2-3 inches long (if the stems are too long, the crown will look messy).

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Instead of crowns, you could create bracelets, necklaces, or garlands to decorate a tea party. There are so many possibilities!

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You can use other types of flowers to make these garlands too. If the stems are not very thick, you can follow the instructions on this Japanese website to tie them a different way. If you scroll down on the website, there are also instructions for making “twirlers” using dandelion stems. Simply take a dandelion stem and make several small slits around the top and bottom. Place the stem in water, and the slits will curl. You can then send it down a stream and watch it twirl away.

Have you been doing anything creative in nature with your children lately? Please share!

20 Kid’s Halloween Costumes Inspired by Japan

19 Oct

Cutest Totoro EVER, by “you and mie”

What are you/your kids going to be for Halloween this year? My kids are dressing up as the Little Mermaid and Spiderman. They are super cute! I was also thinking that, to be unique, it would be fun to dress up as something inspired by Japan for another Halloween. Here are some things/characters that I thought of that would make great costumes!

1. Chibi Maruko chan

2. Hello Kitty (my daughter was Hello Kitty 2 years ago)

3. Domo kun

4. Totoro

5. Kiki

6. Anpanman

7. Doraemon

8. Rilakumma

9. Peko chan

10. Kamen Rider

11. Sazae-san

12. Mario/Princess Peach

13. Shinkansen driver

14. Sakura (Cherry Blossom) tree

15. Pretty Cure

16. Cooking Mai

17. U-tan

18. Ninja

19. Sumo wrestler

20. Sushi (I’ve seen a lot of great sushi costumes online this year!)

 

Do you have any more ideas? Click HERE, HERE, or HERE for my previous posts about Halloween in Japan.

Makeup for Japanese Faces

14 Dec

This blog post is for all the mama’s out there! (and ladies without children too, of course).

Do you find yourself throwing your hair up in a ponytail and wearing yoga pants and minimal makeup everyday? Not that that’s a bad thing, but I know that sometimes I feel like prettying myself up a little bit more and not looking so “mama”. And boy, do I need help in that department!

In the past, I have gone to makeup counters for help, with horrible results. Many makeup “artists” in American department stores are not trained to apply makeup on an Asian face. They apply makeup on my face as if I was a Caucasian and I just end up looking really awful. As a teen, I read magazines such as Seventeen and In Style and those were not helpful either, because it just made me want to look like a beautiful Caucasian girl.

I am now 30 years old and feel like I’m finally beginning to understand how to work with my Japanese skin and facial features (and embrace them!) in a country that doesn’t sell many  Japanese beauty products. Here’s what has helped me:

1) Sephora! Sephora is a popular name-brand cosmetics store. They have LOTS of products that you can try out in-store so there’s no guessing about what colors look good on. The Sephora where I live has some Asian employees. They are so helpful in giving me makeup tips and suggesting the right products for me.

2) Japanese Fashion Magazines, like AneCan. They usually include beauty how-to’s, but most of their products are Japanese, so that part’s not very helpful. I like to look at these magazines for hairstyle inspiration too.

3) How-to Videos and Blogs. There are some great YouTube videos and blogs about makeup and beauty  by Asian girls. Here are a few I have found recently:

Choicerish’s Japanese Beauty Channel:

Michelle’s Phan’s Blog and Channel:

Dance and Melodee’s Blog and Channel:

I don’t own the hundreds of beauty products that these fashionistas do, but I find these videos helpful🙂 What do you think? Do you think you’ll try something new for the holidays? Do you have a favorite beauty blog/product? Please share!

Click HERE for a list of more Japanese beauty blogs🙂 And Pretty & Cute has a small selection of Japanese makeup for purchase. Buying makeup is definitely on my list of things to do when I visit Japan next time!

I am sorry for the very worldly post today. I will get back on track with how to teach Japanese to our children soon!

Harajuku Mini for Target

10 Nov

Are you excited? I am!! (see the collection HERE).

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