My aunt asked me to buy some presents for the three kids in a family that she knows. I was kind of like…..uh……Not wanting to do it. Mainly because my suitcases have limited capacity. However, I found what I personally thought were great gifts.


These are some greeting cards that I found at our Itoyokado department store.  They are actually traditional Japanese games made of paper.  Cool, huh?  Okay, at 400 yen each I thought they were a little pricey, but there were several things I liked about them.

  • Traditional!  Japanese!  Games!
  • The instructions are both in English and Japanese.  It’s such a pain in Japan to see a cool present and want to buy it for somebody in America–but the instructions are all Japanese and you know it will be hopeless for them to figure it out.  It’s not even like German where they can figure it out out, sort of.  With Japanese, if you can’t read it, then YOU CAN NOT READ IT.
  • They are made of paper.  That way when the attraction (of about two and a half minutes, given the attention span of today’s kids) wears off, they can degrade back into dust, unlike certain plastic toys currently cluttering my house.
  • Light weight.  Takes up virtually no room in my overburdened suitcase.
  • Did I say Traditional Japanese Games???????



Okay, if you’ve always wanted to know what infamous Fukushima City looks like, this is a view of our local river.  Isn’t it lovely?