SEP-OCT 2022

Click on photo or link to read the feature • First of all…say hello to an all-new Japanagram feature! Instead of a book giveaway this month, I’m delving into my personal treasure trove of Japanese collectables for the… Japan Swag Giveaway From hilarious limited edition capsule toys to Japanese new year’s ornaments, each month oneContinue reading “SEP-OCT 2022”

Did you win the Jul-Aug book giveaway?

If you recognize your email, congratulations! You just won a copy of Fish Swimming in Dappled Sunlight by Riku Onda If you think this is you, shoot a message to and tell me if you’d like to read it in ebook or paperback. (If you’d like a paperback, I’ll also need the mailing address you’d likeContinue reading “Did you win the Jul-Aug book giveaway?”

Japan Swag Giveaway

Say hello to an all-new Japanagram feature—the Japan Swag Giveaway! From hilarious capsule toys to New Year’s decorations, I’ve collected a vast trove of treasures you can’t buy outside Japan, and instead of giving away a book this month, I’ve decided it’s time to share the wealth. The Sep-Oct 2022 giveaway: Attack Cats! Once youContinue reading “Japan Swag Giveaway”

Let’s watch an epic pagoda parade…at night

Oeshiki ikegami at Ikegami Hongan-ji temple What better way to spend a fine fall evening than watching scores of five-tier pagodas parade down the street, all lit up and festooned with garlands of paper flowers? For over seven hundred years, the festival of 10,000 lanterns known as oeshiki ikegami has been happening every October atContinue reading “Let’s watch an epic pagoda parade…at night”

Haiku that capture the small embarrassments and ironies of modern life

Yamada Zenjido (known on Twitter and Instagram as y_haiku) is a Japanese artist who pens haiku-like truisms paired with pitch-perfect drawings, and they are hella funny…if you read Japanese. A few translations, to brighten your day… • Elderly uncle buying sake.Do I really have toCheck his ID? • Why does the dirty rice cooker alwaysContinue reading “Haiku that capture the small embarrassments and ironies of modern life”

Nutty Noodles

These savory noodles are deeply satisfying, even though they are made from only five ingredients. Walnuts give them a deep autumnal flavor that feels just right for the season, and although they’re a very traditional Japanese dish, everybody loves them. Best eaten at room temperature, they perfectly bridge the gap from summer into fall. •Continue reading “Nutty Noodles”

What’s the most Japanese thing you could ever do? Go on a bus tour

I thought going to the holiest shrine in all Japan would be the most ur-cultural experience I could possibly have. I was wrong. It was the bus tour that really redefined “cultural experience,” but not quite in the way I was expecting. Right now, the only way travelers can come to Japan is if they’reContinue reading “What’s the most Japanese thing you could ever do? Go on a bus tour”

Did you win the May-Jun book giveaway?

If you recognize your email, congratulations! You just won a copy of The Breakaway Japanese Kitchen by Eric Gower If you think this is you, shoot a message to and give me a mailing address you’d like it sent to (this one is only available in hardcover) and I’ll get it to you soonest. If IContinue reading “Did you win the May-Jun book giveaway?”

Easy Japanese lunchbox supper

It’s summertime, and the last thing you want to do is slave over a hot stove, so what kind of meal can you pull together that turns leftovers and other stuff you’ve already got in your fridge into a feast for the senses? • Easy Japanese Lunchbox Supper Ingredients: Rice (warm or cold) Snap PeasContinue reading “Easy Japanese lunchbox supper”

Let’s stroll through a forest of perfect miniature trees!

Bonsai Village in Ōmiya Bonsai Village is the neighborhood surrounding the Bonsai Art Museum in Ōmiya, which is home to the biggest concentration of bonsai nurseries in Japan. If you’re as much of a tiny tree fangirl as I am, ogling the pristine specimen trees at the museum followed by a stroll through nurseries packedContinue reading “Let’s stroll through a forest of perfect miniature trees!”