Melville Matsuri 2015

Posted August 27th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

Melville_WebA4

 

Finally, a flyer for Melville Matsuri is ready !

Melville Matsuri is a community event for all ages to experience all aspects of Japan.  I’m very happy with how this event is forming – lots of activities !

There will be food & Japanese drink stalls, Japanese grocery stalls, yukata (Japanese casual summer garment) for sale, lots of demonstrations and workshops, and kids activities for all ages.  The best thing is that part of profit goes to local playgroups. 🙂

 

Check out our Facebook pages, and don’t forget to LIKE and SHARE with friends!

 

 


Japanese Festival in Spring

Posted August 4th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

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It’s August now and we are in the middle of winter in Perth.  It’s cold, but I noticed the day is getting longer compared to few weeks ago.  Spring may be just around the corner.

As spring approaches, I’m getting busy for the preparations for an event which will be held on 24th October in Melville.  I’m in a committee and in charge of kids activities.  This event, recently finalized its name as “Melville Matsuri”, is a festival introducing Japanese culture and background to local people.  It’s a charity event and there will be a lot of activities for all ages at a gold coin donation or even for FREE!

For children, there will be…

  • Yo-Yo (mizu-fusen)
  • Jinbei (Japan’s traditional summer dress) dress-up & photo booth
  • lucky dip
  • Japanese letter drawing on the body (like temporary tattoo using a non-toxic pen)
  • origami
  • uchiwa (Japan’s traditional fan) making

and much more.  There will also be a grand final of paper-plane competition for primary school children in City of Melville during the festival.

For adults, there will be…

  • ikebana (Japanese flower arrangement) demonstration & workshop
  • Japanese tea ceremony demonstration & workshop
  • kimono (Japanese traditional gown) demonstration & workshop

and much more.  Lots of displays & demonstration featuring Japanese culture (bonsai, taiko performance, cosplay etc) too.  And, of course, some yummy Japanese food & drinks!!

The final flyer hasn’t been completed yet, but as soon as it’s done I will post here again.

Melville Matsuri is on Saturday 24th October, 3pm ~ 9pm :
Paper plane competition 4pm – 5pm
Paper Plane film from 7pm – 9pm
All activities, workshop & food stalls 3pm – 6 or 7pm
At … Frederick Baldwin Park, Le Souef Dve, Kardinya WA

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On the same month, there will be another Japanese event in City Beach.  There is Hyogo Cultural Centre in City Beach, and Shichigosan ceremony will be held there on 10th of October.

Their vision is –
“To give these children an opportunity to experience this festival that they miss in Japan. It is the first time the children are officially allowed to wear their traditional clothes (also rite of passage).  The special ages of the children are 7, 5 & 3 years of age. The children are also given special 1000 year old sweets (Chitose-Ame) to ensure a long life.” (- from their 2014 website)  (they haven’t created 2015 version yet)

It’s a great opportunity for families with children aged 3, 5 or 7 who can’t go back to Japan but still want to cerebrate shichigosan.  They can do it here in Perth.  There will be some food stalls as well.  I’m not in committee of this event, but I am planning to sell some food at the stall.  My children are 4 & 1 years old, and we are going back to Japan next year so we will be cerebrating shichigosan then – so I’m not attending this event with my family.

Perth Shichigosan Festival is on Saturday 10th October, possibly 12pm ~ (not sure yet)
At … Hyogo Cultural Centre
20 Kalinda Dve, City Beach WA
(08) 9385 9002

I will update when it’s close to the date!

 


Japanese Pop-culture Workshop

Posted July 30th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

cosplay2

Love another side of Japan?  If  you like Japanese anime, you may enjoy some cosplay experience.

Personally I like cosplay!  I wouldn’t do too much skin-showing, but I love to dress up in a totally different character.  🙂  That’d be fun!

There was a cosplay show at Japan Festival (I wrote about this festival here and here), so I know there’re some cosplay-lovers in Perth too.  For some people, cosplay may sound wicked, but I bet everyone has dreamed about being someone else once?

cosplay

Kids cosplay is so cute.

On 22nd August 2015, there will be Japanese Pop-culture introduction workshop in City Beach where you can experience the cosplay world and also get some tips about how and what.  There will also be a workshop for Manga drawing as well.  I remember drawing manga when I was a teenager :p  I was so into it and I still like drawing.

 

When:
22nd August 2015,  14:00 – 15:30

Where:
Hyogo Cultural Centre in City Beach

Admission:
$5  (Free tea & coffee, cookies are included)
Free entry for Hyogo members

– Attack on Titan Levi cosplay by Lecturer
– Asian ball joined doll (by Volks Japan) exhibit
– Manga character drawing workshop (please bring your own drawing materials)

For more information or to book, please contact Hyogo Cultural Centre at
hyogoprogram@iinet.net.au

 

 


Hinata Cafe 2015

Posted April 14th, 2015 in Japan, Perth WA | No Comments »

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There will be another great Japanese event happening in just few weeks!

This Hinata Cafe, 5th time in Perth, will open at the same location as past years – in Bibra Lake.  This is an unique event as the concept of this event is a “temporary open cafe space to exhibit original craft and art, share experience of self expression”.    There will be Japanese artists selling their gorgeous hand-made works,  as well as food & drink stalls and live music by local and Japanese musicians.  If you love going to flea markets, love wondering your Sunday with some live music, or are looking to get some original hand-made items, you’ll love this one!

hinata

I’ve only been to this Hinata Cafe once (they didn’t do last year), and I know there will be this artist Naoko Yamada who paints beautiful arts.  I’m hoping to find a nice painting of her as well as something pretty for my house.

The event will be on;
 (Sunday) 3rd May 2015
10:00 – 16:00
Venue:
Perth Waldorf School
14 Gwilliam Drive, Bibra Lake
What’s on:
Exotic Japanese sweets and lunches
Creative exhibition of arts
Uniquely hand made items for mother’s day gift
Live music with many talented musicians!!
Parking:
Please DO NOT park on the main street as it will block the traffic.
There are lots of parking spaces by the lake.

Hinata Cafe Facebook page

Hinata Cafe blog


What’s your thought?

Posted March 13th, 2015 in Perth WA | 5 Comments »

Yakisoba and Okonomiyaki

 

If you’ve been to Japan in matsuri (festive) season (most likely in summer), you know those stall food that add more excitement and energy to the atmosphere.  Yakisoba, takoyaki, okonomiyaki, kakigori, crape, grilled corn, just to name a few.   Here in Perth, I get to see some stalls that sell Japanese food at festivals (I saw Fumi’s Okonomiyaki & Yakisoba stall at  Chinese NY festival in Northbridge last month) but not so many kinds.

City of Melville is organising a Japanese festival, which is a charity based event, in October this year.  The details are yet to be confirmed, but there will be some stalls selling food and also Japanese goods for children.  I hear taiko performance will be played at the beginning of the festival, and they will show a Japanese movie “paper plane”.

It sounds exciting as I love matsuri!  I know it’s a charity based event and I can’t expect too much, but I hope to see some stalls selling Japanese stall food there.

Here is a question:  What do you want to see at this kind of Japanese festival?  Food? Activity?  I want to hear your thoughts so I can probably pass this to people who are organising this festival in Melville.

Thanks!


Hayao Miyazaki Family Movies

Posted January 3rd, 2015 in Ume's Interests | No Comments »

Ghibli

 

There was a series of Studio Ghibli movies on SBS2 for 5 nights (apparently tonight was the last one!! sigh) – My Neighbour Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, and Ponyo.  On their website, it shows that the current top movie people have voted as their favorite is Howl’s Moving Castle (32%) followed by Spirited Away (31%), My Neighbour Totoro (22%) and Ponyo & Kiki’s Delivery Service (both 6%).

ponyo

As you know there are many other Ghibli movies including Castle in the Sky, Princess Mononoke, The Cat Returns etc.  What’s your favourite? I’m surprised that Howl’s Moving Castle was voted more than Ponyo and Kiki’s Delivery Service.  It’s, of course, people’s choice, but to me Kiki’s Delivery Service is one of my favourite.  I love My Neighbour Totoro, Princess Mononoke (I went to a cinema to watch that!), and Grave of Fireflies.  My son loves My Neighbour Totoro and Spirited Away.  I thought Spirited Away is far more difficult for a 3-year-old to understand, but he seems to enjoy the whole story.

Apparently, the top Ghibli movie (which made most profit) is…
Spirited Away!
Followed by…
Howl’s Moving Castle
Princes Mononoke
Ponyo
The Wind Rises
The Secret World of Arrietty (I don’t know this)
Tales from Earthsea
The Cat Returns
Porco Rosso
Pom Poko
From Up on Poppy Hill (I don’t know this)
Kiki’s Delivery Service
Only Yesterday
Whisper of the Heart
The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (I don’t know this)
My Neighbours the Yamada
Nausicca of the Valley of the Wind
My Neighbour Totoro
Castle in the Sky
(ref: matome.naver.jp)

Have you watched all of them???

I left Japan in 2003, so most of the movie after that year are not familiar with me.  (Hawl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo, The Wind Rises etc)  This ranking is based on the profit.  The newer ones seem to be in the top ranking (because people know Ghibli brand well) .  I’m sure Totoro, Nausicca and Laputa (Castle in the Sky) are some people’s top list!

I missed some Ghibli movies on SBS2…  I would love SBS (or any other channel) to show more Ghibli movies sometime!!


Bringing Japan into our life in Perth

Posted August 9th, 2014 in Ume's Thought | No Comments »

Bagels

Gosh, time flies ….!!!  It’s August already?  It’s been, what, 4 months since I last wrote a post on Umeboss!

Things have been hectic in my life for the last few months – I had another baby boy, restarted my small business Bagelier  (only occasionally), some of my friends decided to move out of Perth so we had several farewell gatherings, and just keeping up everyday with a 3-year-old boy and a newborn is busy enough. :-[

Baby-Hugo

I missed how a newborn baby smells, moves, smiles and wiggles.

I can’t believe my elder son is attending kindy from next year. He currently goes to a Japanese kindy (not a proper kindergarten though), daycare, Japanese book club and Japanese playgroup every week, so I’m sure he’ll be ok going to school 3 days a week, but it’s just that I can’t believe he is grown up to be a school kid soon.

Looking after 2 children is hard work (especially they are boys!) but I’m not quite sure why I started doing the baking business now! I guess it’s part of my personality (my blood) that I can’t just sit around the house – I feel I need to be doing something… I push myself.  It’s a very tiring personality I have!

So, other than baking, most of the time I’m in Japanese environment where people and I speak Japanese only.  I decided to do this way because I wanted my children to be able to speak Japanese in future.  Japanese is my first language and it feels weird if I had to speak English (second language) to my own children. So I made lots of Japanese mum friends and I spend most of weekdays with them, letting kids play together.  Thanks to that, my elder son (3 years old) speaks more Japanese than English.  So my plan is working in spite of the fact that I’m the only Japanese speaker in the house and all my family are overseas.  I know his English will be stronger once he starts to go to local school, but at least he has the base then I believe he won’t forget it.

In oppose to his Japanese, my English is getting worse these days.  Because I spend everyday with my babies I don’t get lots of time talking English now.  I don’t want to be someone who stays in non-English community while in Australia, but I guess I need to stay like this until boys go to school and then I can start spending more time with English-speaking friends and working in English-speaking environment.  Until then…

I sometimes miss myself few years ago when I was speaking only English and forgot how to speak Japanese properly. It was a funny experience – I know all Japanese in my head but words didn’t come out from my mouth.  I was 23, and spent only 2 years in Australia (21 years in Japan) and already forgot how to speak my own language! So I know my kids will lose some Japanese while living in Australia… I’ll just have to keep up talking to them in Japanese as much as I can and it’ll keep our (both me and my kids’) Japanese skill, I hope..


New Trend in Japan.. Wasabi Donburi?

Posted February 25th, 2014 in Food, Japan | 4 Comments »

chicken don

 

When you hear the word “donburi” you’d imagine many kinds of donburi dishes… oyako-donburi, ten-don (tempura-donburi), una-don (unagi-donburi), katsu-don (katsu donburi), kaisen-donburi etc etc.  There are many types of donburi dishes in Japan and I can’t count how many…

Donburi is one of the quick and easy dish you can have at restaurants or home – and has been one of the most popular lunch menu for office workers to grab during the short lunch break.

My favourite is oyako-donburi!! …but I also like ten-don, una-don….  hmmm writing this makes me really really hungry!!

Now, in Japan, there is a new kind of donburi dish called “wasabi donburi”.   It sounds like something you’d have to eat as a penalty of the game :p  But it appears to  be delicious!

As the name indicates, the key item is wasabi.  Wasabi donburi actually is a very simple dish – just a bowl of steamed rice, katsuo-bushi (bonito flakes), wasabi and soy sauce.

fresh wasabi

 

Sounds weird??  If you love wasabi you must try this!!

You will need fresh block of wasabi for this dish.

Imagine this…

Freshly steamed rice in a bowl.

Sprinkle katsuo-bushi.

Freshly grate wasabi and place on top of rice.

Pour the best quality soy sauce..

wasabi donburi

And eat as you mix the wasabi into rice…

Hmmmm it does sound yummy to me!!

🙂


Hot Japan Festival in Forrest Chase

Posted February 23rd, 2014 in Perth WA | No Comments »

Japan Festival 2014

Were you there??  There was a Japan Festival held in Forrest Chase in Perth from 2pm until 7pm yesterday.  It was a HOT day, especially that I’m 24weeks pregnant and also had a huge headache from the cold I’d caught few days ago I honestly didn’t want to get out of air-conditioned room in my house.  But I pushed myself to head to the city just because I wanted to eat okonomiyaki (saucy savoury pancake) and kaki-gori (snow cone).

photo 2-2 copy

 

As I expected, there were so many people at the event.  When we arrived there was a cosplay competition going on on the stage.

There’re huge queues around the stalls.  Because the water fountain was on, people had to queue around the water area and I couldn’t see where the okonomiyaki stall was at first.  We walked around, and first my son played super-ball tsuri ($2).   You scoop floating super balls from water using a catcher made with thin paper.  Once the paper is broken you are out.  You could get maximum 5 balls and when my son caught 5 balls he broke the paper using his fingers :p  Anyway he got 5 balls!

We decided to queue to get some food.  It was so hot so we wanted to get kaki-gori first.  Huge queue…  The stall was also selling snack bags for kids and cold drinks.  We got kids snack pack, ramune (Japanese carbonated drink for kids typically seen in summer festival in Japan) and kaki-gori.  My husband didn’t want to queue so he went to grab hot dog which had no queue in front of the stall.  Okonomiyaki and takoyaki stalls had the longest queues :p

We noticed that Japanese consulate was giving away plates of yakisoba for free, so I queued there.  In the end I didn’t get to eat okonomiyaki 🙁

photo 3-1

 

Around 5pm it started to cool down a little.  Kids were crazy playing in the water area.  I wanted to listen to live music but decided to head home around 5:30pm.

 

 

photo 5-1

 

It was a fun event and I was amazed to see how many Japanese people (and people who like Japanese culture) are in Perth.  I thank all the volunteers who helped this event, and the people who contributed towards the Fukushima charity.


Sleeping Baby Art

Posted December 13th, 2012 in Ume's Interests | 4 Comments »

My mum told me this is what Japanese people are into these days – Sleeping Baby Art.

Sleeping Baby Art is something you do to make it look like a sleeping baby doing something /0r being something.

I’ve seen photos like that at some Facebook pages here too, but some mums in Japan are crazy about this thing.  But, since my mum told me about it, I kind of wanted to do it too.

Here is my first work 🙂

HOHOHO!!!

Does it look like a Santa Claus carrying a bag-full of toys near a chimney?  ^^

And then….

Have a wonderful holiday season to everyone!!

xxx