December 31, 2010

Almost Over

What a year it's been...for me, anyway. How was your year?

I had SUCH a great time with this blog this year! It gave me a reason to start taking really LONG walks to areas in Tokorozawa that I never had a chance or a reason to go to. So many things I've learned from just talking to random people and looking up the history of the area. Next year will be my third year as part of the City Daily Photo community and I can't wait to get started!

Thank you to everyone who came by to take a glimpse at photos of Tokorozawa. And a big New Year's Eve hug to those who left comments, I really really appreciate it.

I hope it's blue skies all the way for everyone in the new year!

Take a look at more beautiful skies all around the world here.

December 29, 2010

After the Party

 There still seems to be a bit of fall left in Tokorozawa. I love how these ginkgo leaves are scattered about like confetti. Maybe mother nature was celebrating something...

December 28, 2010

Put On a Happy Face

I was looking at all the leaves on the ground...and realized that a lot of them had faces!

These two were my favorite, the the wobbly smiley face and the surprised face  :-)

December 27, 2010


Mostly all the trees are bare...but this flower is as bright as can be.

December 26, 2010

Field of Blue

It was super duper cold and I was shaking all over...but I did manage to get this shot of the illumination at Seibu-en Amusement Park.

The whole park is lit up with colorful lights. It's pretty amazing. The theme is "Fantasy World" and the lights decorate the amusement park until January 10th from 4-9pm.

December 24, 2010

Shinin' on Eve

So once again, it doesn't seem like we're getting a white Christmas. But the cloudy rainy weather cleared and it's going to be sunny skies this whole weekend, yay!

Christmas in Japan is for mainly couples and children. Couples go out on romantic dates and kids get presents, Christmas cake, and Kentucky Fried Chicken. It's all very commercial, not that it's a bad thing or anything. I love all the flair of Christmas decorations and songs we get around the city this season.

The number of Christians living in Japan is very few. Of the whole population in Japan, it's said that there are less than 1% who are Christians. I think the most recent number was around 0.7%, which is roughly 1.2 million people. For them, it's also a time to celebrate the birth of Christ with family, friends, and other church members.

But regardless of religion, I do hope everyone has a happy Christmas Eve today!

Take a look at more beautiful skies all around the world here.

December 22, 2010

Holiday Warmth

It's kind of warm today. Very weird weather we've been having.

But it was a great day to sit outside for awhile with something warm. These seats outside are a part of the Anderson bakery shop at Shin Tokorozawa Parco. They have delicious bread and pasteries here.

Plus you can enjoy the christmas lights outside, too!

December 21, 2010

Santa Baby

Santa outfit, anyone?

This outfit is available for only 2,498 yen and it includes a santa hat, santa tanktop, santa skirt, and (although you can't see it here) santa kneehigh socks. I would have loved to see someone buy this.

December 20, 2010

Slide and Glide

Winter season without ice skating is like Christmas without a tree.

Growing up watching every national and international figure skating competition in the United States, I always wanted to be Kristi Yamaguchi and secretly thought that Victor Petrenko was kinda hot. And although I could never manage to throw myself into the air to do a jump or get all bendy and do a Biellmann spin, I've always loved skating and go to the rink every chance I get.

The skating rink at Seibu-en Amusement Park is open from 10am-4pm on weekdays and 10am-9pm on weekends. I'm seriously considering getting a season pass.

December 19, 2010

Twinkle Twinkle

There were twinkling stars everywhere at Parco, the shopping mall in Shin Tokorozawa.

I was on one of the bridges that connects the Parco Bldg to the Let's Bldg. You can see another set of bridges on the otherside. There were a lot of people on that bridge admiring the christmas lights, too! 

Click below for photos of wonderful bridges around the world!

December 17, 2010

Hold On

The wind has been huffing and puffing these last few days. But some leaves are still hanging in there.

I was humming Wilson Phillip's "Hold ON" for some reason the other day and it reminded me of these leaves. "Hold on for one more day..."

Happy weekend everyone!

Take a look at more beautiful skies all around the world here.

December 15, 2010

History Walk

This is part of the wall surrounding the construction site of the Ever Sky Tower, one of the Kotesashi Towers (there are two being built).

I don't know about construction sites in other countries, but here in Japan the construction company usually decorates the outer side of the wall. Some draw trees or flowers and sometimes they show old pictures of the area and have information about the history of the area.

Around the Ever Sky Tower, there are pictures and dates of events related to Kotesashi Station. It was fun seeing old pictures and leaning about how the station came about.

(1970 - Kotesashi Station Opens)

(1977 - The 2000 Type Train is Introduced on the Seibu Line)

(1976 - Construction of Kotesashi Heights Starts)

December 14, 2010

Magic Tree

Well, I'm not really sure what this Hamamelis Japonica plant looks like in full bloom. But I'm guessing it did not grow this glove...

December 13, 2010

Scarlet Star

I am feeling very merry lately! And really, who wouldn't, with so many pretty poinsettias around?

For a country that only celebrates Christmas commercially, we are really into it. All the flower shops are full of Christmas related flowers and plants, poinsettias being the most popular. It really livens the place up!

December 12, 2010

Thriller Bridge

The stairs of this pedestrian bridge was very blue.

Not very many people were using it when I passed it. Maybe because everytime a truck would drive by, the whole bridge would kind of bounce and shake...not the greatest feeling when you're on it.

Click below for photos of wonderful bridges around the world!

December 11, 2010

In The Water

For some reason I like this shot. It's a view around dusk from the bridge above Yanase River. Do you see the koi fish in the water?

See other wonderful reflections from around the world at Weekend Reflections hosted by James.

December 10, 2010

Popular Persimmons

Persimmons are one of my favorite fall fruits. I love the simple taste. Walking around Tokorozawa, you'll see a lot of persimmon trees in people's yards. 

And although I'm not the best person to start talking about Japanese literature...I do remember a very famous haiku that almost all Japanese people know or have at least heard of. It's by a famous haiku poet named Masaoka Shiki (正岡子規).

"Kaki kueba Kane ga naru nari Horyuji"

This translates to something like "Bite into persimmon, a bell resounds, Horyuji." Shiki wrote this while he was in Nara during his travels, sitting in a tea room close to Horyuji while eating persimmon, which was said to be his favorite fruit. And although it's said that the sound of bell he refers to is actually from Todaiji, a different temple in Nara, this famous haiku composes a lovely fall scene and remains to be one of the most famous haiku in Japan.

Take a look at more beautiful skies all around the world here.

December 9, 2010

Hooter Alert

Taking a break from the autumn is a cute little owl.

I can almost hear it saying, "HOO wants water?" Sorry, I couldn't resist.

December 8, 2010

Sweet Memories

I think I need a vacation to recover from the vacation...can't seem to keep up!

Today almost felt like it was spring outside. We had a beautiful 18C sunday afternoon. But the colors of the trees remind us that we still have a while to go before it's truly spring.

And I've finally was able to post some photos from DC. Mind you, I did a whole lot of relaxing and didn't really take a lot of photos of the city...but here are some that I caught here and there:

(from my window on the plane)

(The National Archives Building)

(Cutting of the cake at the wedding reception)

(I loved the moody metro stations - Dupont Circle)

(So THIS is where I lost it - Big red shoe @Union Station)

(Union Station)

(Another shot of Union Station)

(I really adore the architecture in DC - F Street)

(9th Street NW)

(Washington Monument)

(Ronald Reagan National Airport)

(Smithsonian Castle Information Center)

Oh, and the wedding? Absolutely wonderful!

It was so great seeing the happy couple getting married, surrounded by friends and family. You can tell they are very much loved and I wish them all the best!

Ok. So that was a bit more than "some"...but I couldn't stop uploading photos! Hope you enjoy them and get a chance to visit this lovely place, too! Even without a wedding to go to, I think it's one gorgeous city :-)

(Suddenly back to reality - Tokyo Bay)

PS: I'm behind on all my comments (so sorry!) but will be by soon!
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