Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Japanese new year celebration

One of my favorite things about living in a foreign country is getting to learn about the people and their traditions. As Christmas is in the States, new years is a HUGE deal here!  Last week some Japanese ladies invited the Camp Zama spouses group to a new years celebration.

I met Yoko 2 weeks after I arrived in Japan at the Japanese cooking class I took (remember???).  She also attends our weekly PWOC (bible study) on base and she's become my favorite Japanese acquaintances.  I just love her to pieces!  She was the "MC" for the event.  Isn't she adorable in her pink kimono?!?!?

Musicians played some traditional Japanese music for us

then we were treated to a flower arrangement demonstration

and learned about foods traditionally eaten on new years day and the reasons behind them

 before we dove into lunch prepared by the Japanese women (SO YUMMY)

We posed for a few photos in front of the flower arrangement 

before playing a game.  There were 5 types of beans in a bowl and we had to move them using the chopstick from that bowl to another.  The smaller the bean, the more points it was worth

that's me picking up the smallest can sort of see it, it's red (I'm pretty good with chopsticks, I'm bragging, it took a lot of practice)

it was pretty intense


we won a picture frame (and that's the program under it, one of the ladies does caligraphy art and those are her favorite quotes or poems (I don't remember which) that she drew for us)

I feel so blessed to get to experience these things while I'm here and share them with the world via this blog.  Thanks for reading!


JG said...

Thanks so much for sharing! Asian cultures have such beautiful traditions. Did you get up at sunrise for the New Year? My Chinese friends did that. I like the symbolism of it - seeing the New Year literally dawn. It just seems a little extreme after staying up so late the night before. :)

Chantal said...

Awesome! I love learning about new cultures!

Anonymous said...

Hey Jes! Zama invited the Yokosuka PWOC board to attend the Covenant Players Program. Will you be there? I am on the PWOC board here so I will be there! :-)