Monday, October 31, 2022


Saturday the weather was nice (plus we wanted to get away from the reno noise) so we got out and about and went to check out the Edo Tokyo Open Air Architectural Museum in Koganei.

From our house it is about an hour and a half by different trains and a bus.

I’m pretty sure it was my first time ever to see the Yamanote line this empty.

Since the Edo period, many historical buildings in Tokyo have been lost to natural and man-made disasters (war). 

In 1993 the open air museum was established on 7 hectares (17 acres) to preserve and exhibit many historical buildings.

All the buildings were donated by many families and it is a nice way to see how life was "back in the day".

The entrance fee is 400 yen for adults, but luckily on this day it was free.

We weren't too sure why it was free, but think it was because they were holding a large tea ceremony event at various homes so we weren't allowed to go freely inside many of them.

One of the first things we did was have coffee at Musashi Sabo inside of the Georg de Lalande home.

800 something for each of our parfaits plus 500 something for each of our coffees...3000 something total...kinda pricey. 

But the parfaits were delicious and it was nice to just sit and have coffee outside of our apartment.

It was also nice that you didn’t need to take off your shoes in this home.

Why I say that is to see inside most of the homes, you had to remove your shoes, so I walked around the homes instead since my converse shoes are a p.i.t.a. to put on and take off.

Lunch was beef curry from Takahashi Shoten's kitchen car (lunch wagon)...500 yen (tax included)

Outside of the museum, was this huge ceramic fair...definitely no social distancing...

We also ran into packed trains on the way home.

I am glad we got to check out this museum, I am also interested in coming back in the Spring to Koganei Park because they have lots of cherry trees.

More photos if you are interested here.

Edo Tokyo Open Air Architectural Museum
3-7-1 Sakuracho
Koganei Tokyo
Phone: 042.388.3300
Closed Mondays
Hours: 9:30-16:30

Friday, October 28, 2022

this and that

Tokyo people: caught this furry one looking at me when I was taking its mom's photo...
Finally this do-do got ticketed...always parking illegally.

It is only a two laned road, so buses and other cars always need to go around him…so dangerous!

Watched this movie the other day "Love at Second Sight" 


Thought it was cool that one of actors in the movie liked my IG post...
"Yesterday" this movie was fun too.
“Trained someone” to wash his bento box as well as the water bottles he takes to work
And to wash our masks and shopping bags after he comes home
Hard to see because of the reno netting but the sunset the other night was pretty cool.

You could see this silhouette of Mount Fuji as the sun set...

Looking out at Haneda airport, this was the shadow of Mount Fuji and the clouds
The news mentioned the next day that the sunset made Mount Fuji look super orange!
Chocolate covered dried ono!
Kind Bars in Japan, only 2 pieces and each is wrapped.

Not too earth friendly.

It was also more like rice krispie treats, but these were nice to try.

Taiyaki filled with chestnut paste...mmm!

Tokyo's daily case count is up...we hope to get our influenza shots soon.

Have a safe weekend.

Thursday, October 27, 2022

the butternut squash

One butternut squash...
made into 4 bowls of soup
Roasted then tossed with onion, chorizo and maitake then topped with some cheese sauce.

Roasted then served with salad and hamburger topped with cheese sauce...

Cooked with pasta, chicken, lotus root, onions, spinach, garlic,  squeeze of lemon.

And the last of it put into won ton soup.

The temps have dropped considerably over the past couple of days...what have you been enjoying?!

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

this and that

lots of things I haven't blogged about, so though I would do a "this and that"

bought a headset and adapter for my I can watch tv and look at videos on my doesn’t totally block out reno noise but it is way better!

dahlias...the price of them at most of the flower shops are kinda krazy.

I think I saw one for 700 yen!

These were kinda sorta reasonable...440 yen each (tax included)...

Savory taiyaki from Omedetaiyaki, kind of like okonomiyaki, similar to the one we had in Tohoku...delicious!

210 yen (tax included)

Mandorle caramello...croissant filled with custard, chocolate and topped with almonds from Trasparente La Ciccia..delicious!
got to vote absentee for the upcoming election...hope my ballot makes it back to Hawaii in time.
tried Mother's Meat butter chicken curry...480 yen (tax included)

Not too spicy and I would've preferred the chicken to be deboned, but it was a nice break from cooking.

Sandwich Marco's marron marron...chestnut whipped cream and chestnut paste...650 yen (tax included) been a couple of years since I had this, it was a nice treat!

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, October 25, 2022


Unlike Saturday's clouds, Sunday was beautiful!

Satoshi wanted to revisit the Yanesen area (short for Yanaka, Nezu and Sendagi), which he had been to with his guide friends a couple of weeks ago.

One place was Ueno Toshogu, which is a smaller version of the one in Nikko...they were also having a dahlia exhibit..entrance fee was 800 yen per person! worth it though.

Learned about the different types of blooms (cactus, collarettes, anemone, etc) pretty! some were super tall!

Recently we've been seeing a lot of fresh flowers placed in large shallow bowls and the area where you are supposed to purify your hands at temples.

With the pandemic, the area where you purify your hands (chozusha) was off limits so that crowds would not gather, instead many temples started to put fresh flowers into the "trough-like" chozusha and it is called "chozubachi" and the decorative flowers are called “hanachozu”

Ueno Toshogu also has botan (peony) exhibits here in the Winter and the Spring, so I am interested in checking these out in the coming months.

Down the street is Kuroda Memorial Hall, which displays some of the artwork of Seiki Kuroda, who is somewhat considered the father of modern Western-style painting in Japan.
Next door is the National Children's Library.

Apparently the outside of the building is the original and the inner building was built by Tadao Ando.

Down the street is Hagiso, a cafe/gallery.

I've had this place bookmarked ever since we visited this area in 2018.

I ordered the fried saba (mackerel) sandwich...1340 yen (tax included)...don't sneeze or the sandwich will fall over...ha!

This was bland, what mustard and mayo they gave was toward the “bottom” of the samdwich, the bread was nicely toasted and the fish nicely fried though

Satoshi had their keema curry...1440 yen (tax included)

He said this was delicious, but the portion looked kind of teeny for him, so I gave him part of my sandwich.

Both of our lunches came with cassis sherbet and choice of drinks (Satoshi had hot coffee while I had iced coffee)

Nearby Hagiso is Isetatsu, a shop that has been in business since 1864 and specializes in Edo Chiyogami paper crafts, supplies, and souvenirs.

This man was personalizing this rabbit paper objet.
We also checked out Ueno Sakuragi Atari, a cluster of refurbished homes turned into shops and restaurants.
I had been wanting to try Vaner's Nordic style baked items...this is 1/4 of their rye bread 400 yen (tax included).

I had envisioned the bread to be dense and maybe dry but was surprised that the outer crust with tons of seeds was! which was disappointing.

You can also buy items and eat in the courtyard, so I want to go back...

Ogino Sweets has been in business for over 50 years...

We bought their yakidango and kusadango to try...280 yen (tax included) for the two
Too bad it got messed up by the time we got was still delicious though.
Saganoya, a senbei (rice cracker) shop that has been in business since 1914.
We tried their mix 500 yen (tax included)...sweet salty different textures, delicious!

The weather was beautiful and it was nice to be out and about.

Satoshi wants to come back to check out more places that he and his guide friends went we'll be back.

More pictures here if you are interested.

Ogino Sweets
5-2-5 Yanaka
Taito, Tokyo
Phone: 03.3822.4605
Closed Mondays and Tuesdays
Hours: 9:00-18:00

2-18-9 Yanaka
Taito, Tokyo
Phone: 03.3823.1453
Open daily 10:00-18:00

3-10-25 Yanaka
Taito, Tokyo
Phone: 03.5832.9808
Hours: 8:00-20:00 *check their social media for closed days

Vaner (2022: no longer in business)
2-15-6 Uenosakuragi
Taito, Tokyo
Phone: 03.5834.8137
Closed Mondays & Tuesdays
Hours: 8:09-15:00

6-1-27 Yanaka
Taito, Tokyo
Closed Wednesdays
Phone: 03.3821.6317
Hours: 9:00-18:00

Monday, October 24, 2022


Satoshi wanted to check out Yokohama, so I showed him where the Harbor View Park was.

There weren't many flowers in bloom.

Lunch was in Chinatown at Hoshou.

Their beef belly curry was featured on a television program, but it was kind of disappointing, the meat wasn't tender and Satoshi felt the rice was on the hard side..990 yen (tax included)

We also tried their seafood takoyaki...1600 yen (tax included) for two 

Kind of like fried least there was a scallop in each piece...not worth the price though 

Red brick warehouses...bummer this was under renovation, so no exploring inside.

So many people with their furry kids out and about.

Yamashita Park...HUGE rose garden better than Harbor View Park (and no need climb up the steep hill!)
Vanilla Beans The Roastery inside Yokohama Hammerhead, shopping/food area which is (I think) part of the ferry terminal

Satoshi had their Minato Mirai doughnut which was actually a doughnut shaped ganache covered with hard shell like ono! 880 yen (tax included)

I chose their Fondant chocolat...1210 yen (tax included)

Frozen raspberry & pistachio bits and warm, oozy chocolate in the center topped with vanilla ice rich and ono!

Both items came with choice of drink, we both had hot coffee.

The skies were kind of overcast

So the views from the cafe as well as the parks weren’t too impressive.

Even if everyone was out and about, it was nice to be out of the house and away from the reno noise (they work on Saturdays!)

I have more photos to share here if you are interested.


138 Yamashitacho

Naka, Yokohama, Kanagawa

Phone: 045.681.4437

Open daily 11:30-21:00

Vanilla Beans The Roastery

inside Yokohama Hammerhead 2F

2-14-1 Shinko

Naka, Yokohama, Kanagawa

Phone: 045.323.9007

Open daily 11:00-20:00