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The Neglected Blog 


Oh hi. I’m back. We took a vacation to Japan last month and re-entry into my home time zone has been a challenge. We got home on May 2 and I think I’m almost adjusted, but now my work and social calendars are keeping me from the blog. 

We had planned to go to Japan in the fall, but we found an amazing flight deal (It was less than a flight to San Francisco!) and decided that we had to go for it. I have zero regrets because the weather was beautiful almost every day and really, I could go to Japan every day, so not having to wait until fall was just fine with me.

This time we spent most of our time in Tokyo with a side trip to Hiroshima. Hiroshima was gorgeous and emotional and inspiring. I’m glad we finally went. I’d like to think we paved the way for President Obama’s trip later this month. 

I have so many pictures to share for our latest adventure and gardening season is starting up (even though it’s freezing here this week–literally! I had to cover my plants on Saturday because we had a frost warning!) so I will be back in this space soon with some posts. 

In the meantime, I’ll be reading my book club book and getting ready for a little party Peggy and I are hosting for Karen & Jackie’s birthdays this month! 

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

This picture is from Bunny Tales, a book from 1979 filled with Easter poems and stories.

Donut You Want To Be Mine?

I bought these donuts cards, named DoughNotes a few months ago at a local store, Pumpkin Moon. They are a Chronicle Books product, illustrated by Hannah Berman.

img_8424-1I was charmed by the sweet donut shapes and the waxed paper bag envelopes. They end up looking like the treats Naoto brings home from Stan’s Donuts. They are flat cards, so they are perfect for short hellos, thank you notes, thinking of you notes, orrrrrr…Valentines?

How is Letter Month going for you? So far, I’ve kept up with sending at least one letter, package, or postcard a day, although I almost missed Sunday and had to crawl out of bed to write a quick postcard–oops!

P.S. This is not a sponsored post, but Chronicle is offering 30% off and free shipping with the code SMOOCHES. (Hey, I get their emails.)  Just in case you want some DoughNotes, too.




Happy Christmas 2015! 

  Happy Christmas from the Hasegawas! We hope you had a wonderful holiday! 

N, K, and P

Thrifted Treasures 3

vintage postal truck stamp holderThe last time I went thrifting with my parents, I scored a fun postal find–this postal truck stamp holder. I’ve been looking for a stamp holder for my roll of one cent bobcat stamps so I was thrilled when my mom found this in the kid’s section at Goodwill. vintage postal truck stamp holder, openThe stamps go in a little drawer in the back of the truck and there’s a little sponge in the front of the truck that pulls out so you could wet your stamps (back before they were stickers.) Sadly, in spite of what I’m showing above, the stamps don’t really fit. Because the truck was made for the rolls of perforated lickable stamps, the adhesive versions with their paper backing don’t fit in the truck. And the roll is too big, too. But I’m determined to make it work, so I cut off twenty stamps from the roll and trimmed the excess paper backing off the top and the bottom, rolled them back into a coil and made them fit! It’s a lame amount of work for a few stamps though. (But I’m not opposed.) 

I have a small collection of mail things and someday they will have a permanent home someplace in our apartment. Right now the truck is on my desk (along with a thousand other things) and it’s the last big thing that needs to be tidied and cleaned and decorated for Christmas. 

I will be back later this week with pictures of the tree…and hopefully the rest of the place if I can finish up a couple of paper projects. 

Happy Thanksgiving! 

 Happy Thanksgiving from our home to yours! 

Letter Social at the Forest Park Library on Sunday! 

  The ladies from the Letter Writers Alliance will be in Forest Park on Sunday to host their last in-person letter social of the year! I’ll be there catching up on my letter piles and (probably more likely) chatting with other letter writing fans from my neighborhood. If you feel like joining in, here are the details. 
P.S. Super fantastic postcard pictured above is from Craftgasm’s Shop

Oak Park Post Office 80th Anniversary Celebration

A quick reminder, if you live in the Oak Park, IL area and want to join in on the party for the Oak Park Post Office’s 80th Anniversary, it’s happening tomorrow, Saturday, August 29th, from 10am-2pm. There will be popcorn and giveaways and a tour of the gorgeous building and a special postmark…lots of postal fun. And regular postal business will be happening too, so buy some stamps, mail your packages, snag a passport or a money order. I’m furiously writing a stack of postcards to mail out tomorrow. Write, write, write! 

Happy 4th of July! 

  Here in the U.S we are celebrating Independence Day! Naoto and I are going to relax and garden a bit before we head into the city later to see the Cubs game and fireworks at Wrigley Field afterwards. (Wish us luck battling the crowds!) 
Happy 4th if you’re celebrating, happy weekend if you’re not. And to my letter writing friends, don’t forget there’s a Virtual Letter Social tomorrow, all day long, no matter where you’re writing from and a live video chat started at 3PM Central Time. Maybe I’ll see you there? 

Naoberly’s Noodle Tour: The Shinyokohama Ramen Museum

Shinyokohama Ramen Museum, insideNaoto had one wish for our trip–to go to the Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum, a “food amusement park” in Yokohama. Since we’ve been on our Naoberly’s Noodle Tour, I was almost as excited as he was to try different varieties of ramen. ramen by region,  Shinyokahama ramen museum ramen strainers, Shinyokahama ramen museum ramen bowls, Shinyokahama ramen museumThese three pictures pretty much represent the “museum” part of the Ramen Museum. Actually, the museum part is smaller than the gift shop! But the real purpose of going to the museum is to treat yourself to different varieties of ramen. Two floors below street level, there is an old fashioned “neighborhood” featuring the best ramen shops from all across Japan. (Shown in the top picture.) ramen menu, Shinyokahama ramen museumOutside each shop, there’s a ticket machine where you choose your ramen, any extra toppings, and drinks. You pay at the ticket machine and when you sit down, the servers take the tickets and serve up your order. Museum rules dictate that each adult must order one bowl of ramen at each place he dines. Thankfully, the shops all offer a “smaller” bowl of ramen (in addition to a regular-sized bowl), so you can try a few different types. Sadly, though, even that small bowl of ramen was too much for me. Kumamoto style ramen, naoto's bowl, Shinyokahama ramen museum Kumamoto style ramen, kimberly's bowlWe started at Komurasaki, which serves Kumamoto-style ramen. Naoto had a traditional tonkotsu ramen with added pork and eggs (pictured first) and I had the King’s Ramen with fire roasted garlic with added pork and corn. Kumamoto style ramen, naoto Kumamoto style ramen, kimberlyIt really was delicious! Aaaaaand that was the only bowl I ate! IMG_2819After the first ramen shop, we sat at a table in the bar area and had drinks. Naoto had an Orion beer on tap (which is apparently a big deal since you can’t find Orion on tap around here) and I had a Okinawan citrus cocktail, which may have been the best thing I drank during this vacation.postcard writing, Shinyokahama ramen museum While Naoto moved onto another ramen shop, I stayed at the bar and wrote some postcards. Shina Soba-ya ramen, Shin Yokohama ramen museum Shina Soba-ya ramen, Shin Yokohama ramen museumNaoto went to Shina Soba-ya (where I could see him eating from my postcard-writing station!) and had not only another bowl of ramen, but spare ribs, too! Okinawan style ramen, Shin-Yokohama Ramen MuseumAfter walking back upstairs and spending some time (and money) in the gift shop, we went back down to try one last bowl of ramen. We went to an izakaya and had Okinawan-style ramen (and another Orion beer and another citrus cocktail!). It was really simple but tasty and it had the thickest noodles of any ramen I’d had before.

I highly recommend the Ramen Museum for an afternoon full of noodle fun! I have a few more Naoberly’s Noodle Adventures to share with you soon!

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