Saturday, July 22, 2017

Okitsu Part 1, the Minaguchiya Inn

I had a wonderful day with two friends in the nearby town of Okitsu. I had no idea such a great place was a short train ride away!  

The first place we visited was the historical Minaguchiya Inn, which was written about in Oliver Statler's book The Japanese Inn. (Yes, of course I want to read this book now!) It was an actual hotel from the mid-16th century until it closed in 1985 and is now a museum. Starting in the Edo period, this inn served as a place for the waki-honjin to stay as they traveled along the Tokaido Road. By the end of the Meiji restoration, when people were no longer required to travel this route, the inn reinvented itself as something like a beach hotel. At some point a highway was built, blocking the view of the beach and water and business slowed, causing the inn to close in 1985.  

Many famous people stayed at the inn over the years including Tokugawa Ieyasu and the Showa Emperor, as well as samurai, daimyo, poets, artists, and others. 

These photos show a few of the things on display in the museum now. I highly recommend visiting the Minaguchiya Inn!  

Showa Emperoro and Empress

After this museum visit we ate lunch at a nice place and this was my set meal.

There is more to come about my day in Okitsu!

Friday, July 21, 2017

Crazy Progress

I've put quite a few more stitches in, and still have a lot of blank places to stitch!  Here's the whole thing, plus some close-ups.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Shimizu Lantern Festival

I love Japanese Festivals.  

Last weekend was the lantern festival.  In addition to the food and game booths, at this festival people could buy a lantern, then write a message on it before letting it go in the river.  

There was a long line to take the lanterns to the put in area in the water.  

This little guy was showing where the end of the line was.  

Another wonderful tradition here.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Work In Progress Wednesday - the House Quilt

On Monday, I went to the Janome store (45 minute walk each way), to see about getting a walking foot so I could begin quilting the Scrappy Cat, but it was closed!  It was a small shop and there were no hours posted on the door, so I don't know when it will be open.  The good thing is that I saw my sewing machine model in the store.

This weekend, I pulled out the House Quilt, another of my 17 in 2017 projects. I started this project in August 2015 and only completed the center section with the houses.  

I like this because it uses a lot of small bits and has many little borders. This week I added the one inch border around the house section, then pieced the next section of one inch by three inch bits. The side sections are stitched, but top and bottom are just pinned because I have to add a little corner before I can stitch it.  

More to come...

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

My Student, the Rock and Roller

Sunday evening I was able to go to the music concert of one of my English students. You may remember that I also saw him perform last summer.  He really was amazing! He gives his all to everything he does.

Afterwards, he was interviewed.  

I'm so happy I was able to attend the concert this year and also to see his lovely wife again.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Monday Morning Star Count - All Orange

Today is a national holiday in Japan - Umi no hi or Sea Day, a day to give thanks for the sea.  I think I will celebrate by going out to eat seafood today.

Week 11 of the temperature quilt July 9 - 15 

84, 86, 85, 86, 82, 86, 87 

It has been hot all over Japan, even Hokkaido where they don't have air conditioning in homes.

Oops, I just noticed I attached this block upside down.  It's okay though because all seven days are orange.

Sarah at Sarah Did It!  is hosting a link up on Wednesdays for those making a temperature hexagon quilt.  Check it out and think about joining in.  You can start at any time.

This is my temperature/color (Fahrenheit) scheme: 

100 + Brown 

90-99 Red  

80-89 Orange 

70-79 Yellow  

60-69 Green  

50-59 Blue 

40-49 Purple 

30-39 Pink 

20-29 White 

10-19 Black 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

One Year Stitchiversary

I don't remember the exact date the stitch group began, but I know it was sometime last summer.  I'm very thankful for this group of ladies; they have been so good to me.  

I have put together some pictures of some of our projects in the last year.

Our first get-together