Monday, April 30, 2012

04:30:12 [124/365] - memory...

The third box we shipped from Yakushima has just arrived to our Los Angeles home today. The arrival of the package conjunction to days after days I am spending to launch KURUMA series... reminded me how special this island was.

Everything was so raw... yet pure.
Sometimes I close my eyes just to remember how it felt to be there...

I moved so frequently throughout my life and I never developed much of sentiment to a "place" before... so it feels amazingly lucky to have found a place where I can feel so much connection with... even though our time there feels like a dream now.

p.s. One of the contents in the box was this beautiful glass orb (which used to be a buoy for fishing ship). We saw them everywhere on the island (at home, park and places like this) but everyone said that they no longer found them drifted on the beach. One day we were exploring a very quiet beach and we came across one all tangled up in the seaweed... there was no hesitation and we took it home. We weren't sure if it would make the rough trip from Japan to Los Angeles via sea... but we did our best to wrap it in layers. Today it has arrived with other goodies in the box... it feels so nice to have a piece of the island at home.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

04:29:12 [123/365] - Meri Hari in life

While we were staying in Yakushima, my grandfather's friend reminded us of a great Japanese phrase.

Meri-Hari... which loosely translates as a "looseness and tension".

The context of the conversation was about the importance of working hard to be able to enjoy the time off (since we were traveling). Through our adventure, we came to realize that the best time we had on the road was when we had "Meri-Hari" in our routine... when it wasn't all about sightseeing and having fun... but producing and being creative while taking all the inspiration in.

Now we are back home... and are slowly adjusting back to our regular routine in Los Angeles..., I am holding on to the concept really closely. I love what I do and I've always had a tendency to be a workaholic... I would forget eating or sleeping when I am in the zone... and literally pass out when I can't continue working longer. It's definitely not Meri-Hari... It's okay to have a day like this here and there but I know it's not healthy for my mind, body and my family to do this in the regular basis.

So I am paying very close attention... and are consciously turning off all my digital notifications when I am away from work... so that I can focus on being there for my family and friends and pour more than 120% when I am back at work.

Today Roo and I spent the morning with my family. Taking a long stroll through a beautiful park and letting Roo play with my sister on the slide while I laid on the shady grass... and just be. No emails, no tweets and no facebook. 

It felt so nice. To take a real time off in mind to create a mental space to think beyond daily upkeep of the shop. I was so ready to get back to my work when I came home in the evening:)

Tomorrow is my much anticipated all day work day! I can't wait to produce, produce and produce.  My to-do list includes the update of new items and preparation for the double pop-up shop during the weekend of May 12th! (We will be at Venice Meet on Saturday, May 12th and at Rose Bowl Flea Market on Sunday, May 13th!!).

Please stay tuned for many shop updates via our Facebook page tomorrow:)

04:28:12 [122/365] - making it nice... for one

After three months of 24/7 family togetherness, it was a nice change of pace to have lunch all by myself... with my brand new brown Traveler's Notebook Passport Size as an only companion. After our stay in Kyoto with my lovely in-laws, I am taking any opportunity to "make it nice"... especially around food.

I got a beautiful quote from my tea bag to go with it...
Travel light,
live light,
spread the light
be the light.

04:28:12 [121/365] - time off...

Time off is good for life.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

"KURUMA" / take 8 / Red Gates in Kyoto

It's been a while since the last update from Hanako and Taro and I am so happy to share one more Kyoto adventure with you!

This time Taro and Hanako visit Inari temple, an iconic temple in Kyoto. They are amazed by how beautiful the pathway created by thousands of red gates feels... I hope you do too!

You can check out their previous stops at:
The beginning
An Ocean Temple
White Sandy Beach
An Island Harbor 
Yakusugi Land 
Cloud NINE 
Plum Viewing in Kyoto

p.s. Since we only have a small number of KURUMA, we will be taking WAIT LIST. If you are interested, please send an email to!!  You will be notified and will have one whole week to purchase KURUMA from us before they become officially available at our shop. 

"KURUMA" designed by FLOWERS. Take 8 / Red Gates in Kyoto from baum-kuchen on Vimeo.

04:25:12 [120/365] - make it count...

everything we do today counts... and will make difference/s in our lives far beyond 30 and 40 years from today...

i just know it does...

so let's make it count.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

04:24:12 [119/365] - piece of Japan

Our home is starting to get less cluttered as we finish unpacking and organizing what we packed in our suitcases. It's nice to see our white wall again!

After living with so few things for last three months, we came to the conclusion that we could live with less at home as well... so we can really appreciate what we have.

Here is my little infusion of Japanese inspiration in our home - a tiny flower vase made of a piece of charcoal with small succulents. A perfect combination of Japanese material with desert climate.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

04:23:12 [118/365] - "what a perfect place. let's live here!"

I can't get enough of Los Angeles sunshine and bright light after 3 months of many cloudy/cold/rainy/windy days in Japan... It makes me feel like we're living in a cute little resort:)

FB told me the story from a German children's book... where a little mouse and an elephant leave their home to look for a better place to live. They go around a big lake and end up being at the same place where they started... only to find that everything is so overgrown that they don't recognize their home anymore. They say, "what a perfect place. let's live here!".

That is exactly how I feel about our home. I loved it before we left but I love it more now... that we are back...

p.s. thank you Jessie for such a cute homecoming banner!!

04:23:12 [117/365] - wrapped with care

This afternoon I was super busy catching up with all the orders that came in during our travel. Because I pack all orders by myself... one shipment at a time, it is a very time consuming process. I sort of skipped dinner and anything Roo related tasks to focus on getting as many packages ready as possible (thank you papa FB:).

I love this part of the shop process because it is the most tactile and human part of operating an online store. It feels so real to get these items ready for shipment... and I love stopping my hand time to time to admire some of the items.

Thank you my sweet, awesome and thoughtful customers who have placed orders from our shop while we were away. Nowadays it's rare to wait for something for so long when you order items online... and I am so thankful for your patience. I will make sure that each one of the package is packed as beautifully as possible with the best care I can put in.

Tomorrow I will be picking up new inventory from one of my vendors then continue preparing pre-orders. Please stay tuned!!!

04:22:12 [116/365] - home is...

I can't tell you how happy we are to be home.

Our friend who took care of the house and Shep left the place cleaner and more special than 3 months ago... Finding a cold 6 packs in the refrigerator was such a treat too! Thank you so much Jessie!!!

Today I watched Roo re-discover her room, backyard sandbox, slide. I wished I could read what she was thinking. Every time we changed our location while on the road, we told her that we are going to a "new home" so that she could wrap her head around the idea that we were moving... It must be so strange for her to be at a real home after saying "hi" and "bye" to so many other homes... Thankfully she is dealing with her jet lag much better than we are. I was up until 2 am yesterday (and it seems it will be the same tonight) restarting everything I have left off 3 months ago. Mainly I am focused on preparing all the orders received during our travel.

This travel confirmed us how much we love our home and what we do everyday and that is so priceless...

p.s. we were also excited to add new pins to our Inspirational Investment map!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

04:20:12 [115/365] - lastly...

Last few days have been little crazy for us. We have traveled from Kyoto to Tokyo making many stops to see my family in different locations. Each stop resulted with memorable meeting for Satchi (first time meeting my extended family in Japan:) and much learning for me and FB.

Seeing my family I have not seen for many years made me realize that growing older comes with some amazing rewards... to feel that we are little wiser than 10 years ago (aka before being married and having a kid) and more importantly to feel that we are so hungry to learn more from stories family have to share... Seriously... stories our older generation hold with them are family treasure.

Thank you Japan... you have been so good to us for last 10 weeks...

Last night FB and I tried to sum up our 10 week trip and here was what we would love to share with our daughter in the future.

"you need to go where you want to go... and wherever you want to go better have a great meaning to you."

Tonight we fly out of Tokyo... 

Saturday, April 14, 2012

04:14:12 [114/365] - thank you Kyoto...

thank you Kyoto... you have been good to us and showed us so much about life.

04:14:12 [113/365] - traveling with Roo...

Our best amenity at the current Kyoto accommodation is the small neighborhood park next door.
I can't tell you how much happier our little Roo is when she can run around freely in the park.... so being able to step out to the park even just 15 minutes before/after our city outing has been much needed tension breaker for all of us.

Roo and I had several of these mini outings today. When we first arrived to the park, she was nervous and wanted to stay close to me and only watched other kids from outside... then she quickly made friends... and was in the happy zone.

It's amazing to watch Roo evolve throughout the trip for last two and half months... I know it's a lot for her to take in... all the moves, new environments, people and languages but she has been doing so good and I am proud of her. We do have conflicts and occasional meltdowns here and there but we do our best to explain things to her, give options and get through the ups and downs together (sometimes we take turns dealing with things too).

When she is happy, everyone is happy.

04:14:12 [112/365] - "dear satchi..."

I love mailing pretty postcards from our travel destination... It's such a perfect and sweet way to share mini stories and pretty pictures from travel destination... and who wouldn't want to receive something colorful in their mailbox, right???

I've been writing cards to our friends from Japan... and I sent last few to our little Roo... with small quotes to remember from the adventure. I know she is little too young to read these quotes now but I would love to share stories once she is old enough. We sure have a lot of stories to share:)

Friday, April 13, 2012

04:14:12 [111/365] - so long...

Today while we were on the lunch walk, we caught a cherry tree in the wind...  Warm wind, tree branches shaking and petals falling quietly... it was perfect...

Underneath the tree there was a pink carpet made of cherry petals.

tomorrow we leave Kyoto...

04:13:12 [110/365] - because...

Our adventure in Kyoto is nearing to the end... We have another full day to explore this beautiful city... then we will be heading off to much needed rest in Hakone.

Today we noticeably saw the fall of cherry blossom. Even though it is so beautiful to see the cherry petals fall like snowflakes..., it's difficult to witness something that was so full of life two days ago to be going away.

Isn't it interesting that its limitation of time is actually what makes the cherry blossom beyond beautiful...?

Nothing is meant to be eternal....

So I try to focus on "now" even though it is sometimes difficult to pull my mind together between high-demand toddler and bigger travel company.

Because nothing lasts forever.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

04:11:12 [109365] - shop inspiration from Kyoto

It's so fun to look for new shop inspiration on the road!

Yesterday I took my parents-in-law to Kyoto city while Roo took her afternoon nap. We are on the mission to make a few stops that had not been possible with (almost) 2 year old. Our first stop was Merry Go Round children's book store.

I love a specialty store... especially a good one whose stuff knows EVERYTHING about the subject matter. my mother-in-law is an artist and have published a few illustrative children's book when FB was young... so I knew the store would be a good fit for her:)

And of course... this super cute store filled with beautiful books happened to be displaying a book that was written/illustrated by her good friend in Europe... and a very sweet stuff who was at the store was a huge fun of her friend. What a coincidence... 

For our little Roo, I bought one Japanese book and omi (grandma in Germany) bought one German book which is translated in Japanese.

...and then we went down few floors on the same building and found this shop called Piece.

The gallery's name is "Piece" because they produce affordable everyday items that are almost like art pieces  using left over fabrics from textile/design shop. The shop was super bright and airy... and my favorite part was an entrance to their workshop. Seriously... who wouldn't want to work in the bright cave like this?? I would feel like a Christmas fairy if I were making things in there.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...