Five things you can do at home inspired by Japan29.03.20 | Holly Thomson
During these unprecedented times it is important to see the positives and keep morale up. One way you could make use of your time at home is to learn new skills and hobbies and increase your knowledge of other cultures. Although the world may seem small right now, in truth we have never been closer with most of us sharing this new ‘normal’.
In this blog I have shared five things that you can do alone or with family to take a trip to Japan without even leaving your home. When I lived in Sydney, I worked for a small gift store which was inspired by Japanese art and culture. I fell in love with the elegant art styles and even flew home an art piece to treasure, an origami koala, the perfect mix of the stores spirit and location.
I hope these suggestions can be a source of entertainment and education for you and your families to create your own special memories at home. when the travel restrictions open back up again and you would like to plan and book a Japan tour or holiday to experience it in person, I hope you will keep us in mind and we will be delighted to help.
- Learn how to make Origami.
The art of paper folding was originally created in China in 105A.D and brought over to Japan by monks in the sixth century. Although Origami was only a luxury pastime for generations, it was brought to popularly for many by the story of Sadoko Sasaki. After the atomic bombings of Hiroshima, this young girl was exposed to radiation and spent most of her life in hospital. After learning of the legend of 1000 Cranes, Sadoko was adamant to complete this feat as doing so would grant her one wish. Sadly, Sadoko never got to complete her 1000 cranes but her family and classmates did for her with the hope that her wish of World Peace would be granted. You can do the same and create yourself a challenge to fold 1000 paper cranes. These would look great as decoration in a child’s room hung together or simply gifted as a present of hope and kindness. (See here for a step by step guide on how to make paper cranes and other origami creations).
2. Become a Sushi Master!
With a lack of food eateries right now, why not see if you can make your favourite dish! Sushi is surprisingly quite easy to make and the benefit of making it at home means you can put all your favourite ingredients into your custom roll. The first go-to ingredient is seaweed, specifically seaweed that is intended for sushi-making. You should be able to find this in more stores. If you have a rice cooker, this is the perfect tool for creating sushi rice which should be stickier than normal rice. The rest of the filling is up to you, salmon, avocado, cucumber and shrimp are all popular, but I’ll leave this part up to your imagination! Find the recipe here and enjoy getting creative!
3. Watch a classic Anime movie
Anime has been around since the beginning of film and TV. The expression is used in the Western world to refer to Japanese animation but in Japan it refers simply to any animated drawings. These can be comedic, dramatic, heart-warming and thought-provoking. Perhaps explore a new genre of film and TV and watch some anime during this time. One to start with would be the critically acclaimed Spirited Away, currently on Netflix. In 2016 it was voted as one of the best films of the 21st century and is loved all over the world. The story follows 10-year-old Hiiragi who goes on a journey to recover her parents and herself from a spirit underworld
4. Get a health injection with these Matcha Smoothies!
Matcha is a Japanese staple with Matcha coffee, chocolate and tea all popular across the world. Now bring it to your smoothies with these fun recipes to spark your creativity! Not only is Matcha a fun new twist on your favourite drink, it is also rich in antioxidants and other nutrients. Make these as part of your breakfast, a mid-morning rejuvenating snack or as a super-healthy dessert! Find a selection of recipe ideas here.
- Berry-tastic Yoghurt Matcha Smoothie
- 125g blueberries
- 125g raspberries
- 125ml plain yoghurt
- 125g ice cubes
- 5g matcha green tea powder
5. Write a Haiku
Get those creative juices flowing and write a Haiku. This traditional Japanese form of poetry was created in the 17th century before becoming popular in the 1800’s. A traditional Haiku is formed of 17 syllables in three phases of 5, 7 & 5. This short poem style was originally restricted in subject matter to evoking a description of nature and the movement of the seasons. However, in modern times they have been used to express and describe anything, so no subject matter is exempt! Writing poetry is a great way to compress and compartmentalise your thoughts so grab a pen and paper and Haiku away. Fine examples to get you started here.
I hope you enjoy our Japanese inspired tips to help keep you and the family busy, make sure to follow us on Facebook here for further updates.