the inside of a strawberry treat

Pukupuku Tai – a sweet, fish-shaped, Japanese treat

Generous relatives in Japan ship us goodies a few times a year and for this, I am deeply grateful. Tasting something from Japan is almost as good as being there, especially when an old favorite is nestled in the well packed box. One of those endearing picks is the okashi or Japanese confectionary, pukupuku tai. Pukupuku is onomatopoeia…

thank you toe socks

Shoe unders (Japanese socks) for any occasion

Literal translations of Japanese can be hysterical. Two favorites are tebukuro, literally hand bag. Imagining a bag for my hand leaves me in stitches. If you didn’t already guess, “glove” is the rather boring-in-comparison meaning. The other winner is tabi or foot bag. This refers to the traditional split-toe sock worn with sandals and kimono. Regular socks are…

atrix hand gel

atrix hand gel – dry yet smooth, sticky yet cool

Atrix hand cream was one of the best finds the first year I lived in Japan. As I mentioned in a previous post, it works for me, it’s easy to find and is inexpensive. While atrix in Japan sells more than one product in their very small line, I’ve always stuck to the hand cream. On…

women's glasses

Buying spectacles in Japan from Zoff

What? Zoff. This is the name of a company in Japan that sells glasses. Why? scintillating spectacles the same day; a week if you have an unusual prescription Where? Ikebukuro, Tokyo How much? around $130 CDN or Y12,600 for frames, thin lenses, coatings and case Who? Hubby and I are fans When? Since 2008; most recent buy…

atrix collection

atrix hand cream: dry skin savior from Japan

When I ran out of hand cream a couple of months into my first year in Japan, I was stymied both by the selection and not being able to read much, other than コ. This katakana is “ko” and was very useful in figuring out shampoo versus conditioner! Katakana is often used for non-Japanese words.…