Whew, we made it. I wasn’t sure if it was going to happen, but here we are. Thank you for sticking with me. I mulled over what I wanted to discuss for the last day of “12 Days of Anime,” whether I’d pick my favorite from the year (which I actually covered on the first day), or touch on a central theme from 2016. Instead, we’re getting personal and looking at the path Anime B&B will take starting with the new year.
This was originally going to be a compilation of my new inspirations from 2016 across several social media sites, but my list turned into something more of a YouTube sponsor! That isn’t what this is of course, but I’ve tuned into YouTube more than any other medium this past year, with favorites covering everything from fashion, fitness, food, and travel. I’ll only list the channels touching on Japanese culture here, but feel free to suggest any of your own favorite YouTube channels, podcasts, or blogs you think I should check out.
I knew before 2016 had even started that it would be a crazy busy time for me since I had wedding planning to do before the big date in late August. Blog posts slowed down to once a month if I was good; I had a difficult time keeping up with each season’s additions. I started to cut shows more ruthlessly than I normally would, and a lot of the time watched anime on my phone commuting back and forth to work. I typically set aside shows I think KWoo will like, either to watch together or on his own. But the truth is that he just doesn’t watch as much as I do, preferring to mix up his mediums more frequently. This can be frustrating for me since I like to stay caught up week to week–that, or I like to marathon several episodes at once from the same anime or from different shows. How dare my fiance keep me from finding out what happens next!
Now we’re married. As you’re reading this, I’m on my honeymoon with no anime (except what I bring for the plane…) and no Internet. And that’s a good thing.
The hectic schedule of 2016 and our differing interests has brought a pretty good balance to our daily lives of his interests, mine, and sometimes new ones. I’ve met more people and formed friendships. I still love anime, but I’m finding new hobbies that I’m looking to devote more time to. What this means for future I can’t say right now, but I’ll stick around for a good while yet!
This past weekend, we hosted family and friends in our home and took it upon ourselves to share Seattle’s lovely coffee, foods, and music as much as two days would allow. One such adventure included the EMP Museum, my favorite museum of the city.
EMP is a leading-edge nonprofit museum, dedicated to the ideas and risk-taking that fuel contemporary popular culture. -empmuseum.org
The featured exhibit until May 15th is the Hello Kitty Exhibit titled, “Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty.” I never was one of those girls who jumped on the kitty love, but I did have my favorite Sanrio characters over the years, including Bad Badtz-Maru the penguin and Pompompurin the golden retriever. It was so much fun walking through the rooms and seeing the many ways that Hello Kitty has influenced people. She continues to be an icon on a global scale, and I wholeheartedly support her sentiment that “you can never have too many friends.”
Below are some of the many pictures I took. If you get a chance, I suggest you stop by and see the exhibit for yourself.
“Leave everything to your big sister!” –Mocha/Cocoa
Family has always been a major factor of Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu-ka? Rabbit House is run by a grandfather, father, and daughter. Cocoa dubs herself Chino’s big sister and quickly does the same with Chino’s grade school friends upon meeting them the first time. And now in this second season we get to meet Hoto Mocha, Cocoa’s big sister. The relation is immediately clear upon meeting her—Mocha exudes a sisterly care for everyone around her, particularly cute girls, and gives off a vibrant love for life. Like Cocoa, Mocha’s eyes light up with stars when she spots a special something warm to the heart.
This year has been a whirlwind, both in my personal life, and at work. Multiple family and friend weddings were attended, positions at work were promoted, and that dreaded school loan was paid off.
Now comes my biggest adventure to date: marriage!
Just a few weekends ago, KWoo popped the question on bent knee at a park that holds a special meaning to both of us. My dog wound her way around us on leash completely without care while I sputtered in surprise and joy. I, of course, said yes!
And why the Aria? Given my life long pull to water and mountains, online persona, favoritism for Aria, and anti-diamond stance, an aquamarine ring was a no brainer 😉
This late spring/early summer, my parents and I were invited to Kyoto, Japan, to stay with my exchange sister’s family for both her wedding and vacation. Megumi was our exchange student back when I was still in high school and lived with us for a year. We bonded during that short time, and kept in touch over the years–she visited us in Alaska multiple times, and once in Washington with me just last Christmas. It was our turn to cross the waters for the biggest event of her life, and I hope to visit many more times in the future.
The following sections are divided into temples/shrines (a bit huge, I apologize!), various other establishments like a bathhouse, aquarium, and zoo, restaurants, the wedding, and random final thoughts.
Happy New Year, Anime B&Bers! I spent my first day of the year driving an hour out of town to visit for the first time the Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America, located in Granite Falls, WA. It is the North American branch of the Mie prefecture Tsubaki O Kami Yashiro Shinto shrine, and sits in a delightful wooded glade next to the river. And despite its somewhat remote location, the car line leading up to the lot was long and attendees stood by directing people to open spots. The organization was surprising and efficient at making what could have felt like a long wait not too annoying.Read More »
This season’s Hidamari Sketch x Honeycomb is really hitting the ball with the stories and movement upward from high school to college. This week’s particular episode struck me since I’ll be moving out of my college town soon and into the big world. Even though a large distance will soon separate me from friends I have come to know over my seven years of undergraduate and graduate school, I can rest easy remembering that they’re only a simple text message, E-mail, phone call, or Skype chat away.