February was absolutely a crazy month (in the best way possible)! It’s also a hard month as my dad passed away 3 years ago on February 1st. It’s always a hard day to get through without getting sad to think about the pain that his sudden passing caused my mom and I, but this year, luckily, February 1st was a Monday so we stayed busy with pre-school and the munchkins.
February 3rd is Setsubun – the Japanese bean throwing festival in Japan. It is believed that by throwing beans outside at the “demon” (usually the dad’s of the house. Our “demon” was L this year :)), you are throwing the bad luck out of your home, and when you throw the beans inside the house, you are welcoming good luck into your home. Interesting, right? The next week, my uncle visited from Colorado as he does every year in February. My grandma is a Valentine’s Day baby so he comes and stays with us during his duration. That is literally my favorite time of year as I love the happiness and joy my uncle brings when he visits 🙂 This week, I had Friday off of pre-school so we decided to go have lunch in Chinatown! Walked, ate, and enjoyed all the food stands lined up along the street. I love Chinatown in Japan – it’s the cleanest Chinatown I’ve ever been to!
Mom and I always try to do fun things with Jimmy while he’s visiting. This year, it was the SUPER BOWL and the most exciting one because the Denver Broncos were playing!! L is a huge 49er’s fan so he donned his Niners jersey, but cheered for the Broncos. Despite it being a Monday, L took the day off work to watch with my uncle, while I was with the kids for pre-school. It was pretty funny hearing all the jumping going on upstairs while we were working (my classroom is in the basement of our house). Best part? The Broncos won!! Woohoo!! Also, can’t go on without pointing out the sashimi on the bottom right hand corner of my spread. Noms.
We decided to make some Valentine’s cupcakes with my little munchkins this year. Let’s just say it’s flu season, the kids were stealing chocolate sprinkles from the bowls, and I didn’t eat any cupcakes to save myself from suffering with a fever, boogers and a cough. The kids were ecstatic. As you can see, I haven’t finished the journaling on this page but I’m not too worried about it – I can always fill it out later. The adjacent page is all about a little adventure we went on to Enoshima. My mom and my uncle grew up in this neighborhood, which is about an hour-and-a-half drive from our house. It’s a small island that’s connected by a bridge to the mainland and we love it there. There are beautiful beaches, hidden caves, temples, shrines, and lots of delicious food.
After our Enoshima adventure, we came home and met L at our local sushi joint. So bomb. If you live in Tokyo and want the deets, let me know and I’ll give you the information. It’s probably my favorite sushi spot in all of Japan. That weekend, the four of us went out to eat more Japanese food at an izakaya in Shibuya. An izakaya is a drinking spot with all kinds of food that go well with drinks. We had more sashimi, and amazing seafood. We ended the night with karaoke in Shibuya and ended up getting quite tipsy, but a good night was had by all! Love my crazy little family.
Valentine’s Day was all about spending it with loved ones. My two uncles my cousin, my aunt, mom, L, grandma and I all went to a a famous ribs restaurant in Futako Tamgawa to celebrate since grandma is a big fan of meat… haha, that sounds horrible. I made her birthday card using some Studio Calico stamps. Can you believe this pretty old lady is 91?! Unreal, if you ask me. We had a lovely time celebrating and she surprised us all by eating just about the same as us! That evening, L made a reservation at a cute little Italian restaurant in Sangen-jaya, which was absolutely lovely. Love alone time with this guy – it’s difficult to get that as we live with my mom, but when we get it, I truly cherish it. My Uncle left two days later, which was a huge bummer but at least our last meal together was my favorite ramen in our neighborhood (can you tell I love my neighborhood?).
The next day, we had a night out at Kento’s – which is basically an old school livehouse that plays mostly 60’s music in Roppongi. I gotta let you guys in on a secret: I love 60’s music. We went with a bunch of my dad’s old employees who are so incredibly sweet. They always get together and check up on me and my mom, making sure we’re doing okay. We drank, we ate, we danced, and we ended up at this private karaoke bar that one of our family friends is a member of. We ended up staying out until 2:00 AM!! These crazy old guys sure know how to party.
February 24 was my dad’s mom’s burial. She passed away in January while I was on my flight back from SF to Tokyo, and was buried in the same grave as my dad. In Japan, cremation is the norm (not sure if it’s a religious thing or a space-issue), so families being buried in the same grave is pretty normal. The graveyard is the furthest thing from creepy – it’s absolutely beautiful and has a gorgeous view of Mt. Fuji. We decided to make a trip out of it and after the burial, we went to Gotenba Shopping Outlet which is one of the most famous outlets in Japan. We shopped for a little before deciding to head home, but got caught in some CRAZY traffic and it ended up taking almost 4 hours to get home!! YIKES.
My 7th (!!!!!) and final spread for February is kind of all over the place but I love it. Looks like I may have to start my 2nd album earlier than I had planned… Oh well! Documented some food adventures we embarked on during the last week of February and then some photos of one of my best friends’ engagement to her (now) fiance. They were visiting Maui, and he popped the question on the beach and ON HER BIRTHDAY. Muy romantico! Love the photos – they are such a gorgeous and super sweet couple. I could not be more happier for her. The other side of this spread is just a documentation of L and my walk around Baji Koen. Baji Koen is a park in Tokyo dedicated for horse riding. It has beautiful ponds, complete with swans, as well as GORGEOUS flowers. Spring in Japan is absolutely GORGEOUS so we were pleasantly surprised to find these beautiful plum flowers growing when it’s still so cold! Couldn’t resist getting some shots of them, as well as a couple of selfies.
February was such a wonderful month!! I loved every second of it and the highlight was DEFINITELY my uncle visiting. He is absolutely one of my favorite people in the world and I’m so blessed to have someone like him who I can talk to about anything, get advice from, etc. I would wish for everyone to have someone like him in their life. Stay tuned for next week – I will be sharing something a little different before sharing my March spreads! Let me know in the comments if you have any questions about products used in the spread and I will be more than happy to try my best to answer! xx