Spring in Japan is a battle of the celebrations.  As always in Japan, new-fangled western holidays compete with ancient Japanese traditions.  In spring, there’s Easter (March 27th, in 2016), and cherry blossom viewing (April in Fukushima City), and Girls’ Day (March 3.)

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Easter decorations are still VERY VERY new in Japan.  I have only recently started seeing them.  Definitely not a custom that the Japan have embraced (yet.)

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Cherry blossom themed items.  Cherry blossom viewing, of course, has always been really popular in Japan, and is an old custom.  However, I have only started noticing lots of “cherry blossom” themed sales tactics recently.

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Girl’s Day is really the March biggie.  Families with daughters set out dolls for this day.  Elaborate doll set with many tiers, simple doll sets with only two dolls (the emperor and the empress)–it doesn’t matter.  I keep thinking I need to buy a doll set for my family.  We have a boy so it has never been a priority.  ( I do own a largish emperor and empress doll, which is kept at my mother-in-law’s house.  She sets it out every year.)

Look at the following link neat for an educational game.  In the game, you try to find the location of the doll.  Click on the circles.  If the doll fits, it will appear there.  Have fun!  (The orange squares reveal hints, but are useless if you are not proficient at Japanese.)

http://hina-matsuri.jp/dankazari/