Teaching a Pre-Schooler to Read for The Washington Post

During an observation day at my son’s yochien, my friend translated for me that the teacher was splitting the kids into two groups: those who could read, and those who were still learning. Much to my surprise, my three-year-old American son fell into the first group. MBH and I were delighted, and more than a…

It’s Fall Y’all!

I am a sucker for lists. Life lists, bucket lists, travel lists, reading lists, I love lists to organize everything I want to do, and see, and experience during this life of mine. I especially love seasonal bucket lists, which help me to make the absolute most of the quick changing of the leaves and…

Beaches & Elephants in Thailand

After a whirlwind trip through Vietnam and Cambodia, our family arrived for a few days of relaxation in Thailand. We’d deliberately structured the trip this way, with our intense sightseeing and city-hopping packed into the start of the trip, and the final few days set aside for some pool lounging and beach bumming. It worked…

CupNoodle Museum

One of the most beloved foods in all of Japan is the simple cup of noodles. It’s something I was familiar with before our move, so I’d put off a trip to the museum in Yokohama, saving it for a rainy day. That was a mistake. This museum is AWESOME. I went with a friend,…

Hattori Farm in Kanagawa

Just a short drive from Tokyo, we entered into what felt like another world with Hattori Farm. I’d been enticed by the rumor of pony rides, but when my friend and I arrived with our sons, we learned that they didn’t start until later in the season. Luckily, I hadn’t mentioned pony rides to my…

Exploring Kyoto

  Time & again, whenever I asked friends what their favorite thing they’ve done in Japan was, Kyoto came up. Famous as theย birthplace of geisha, a former capital city, and left largely untouched during the American bombing runs of WWII all mean that Kyoto has spectacular history and architecture that is incredibly unique, even within…

Celebrating the Holidays from Afar

For our first Christmas in Japan, creating traditions were on my mind more than ever. Our son is almost two, that wondrous age when the magic of the holiday season will inform how he feels about them for the rest of his life. No pressure. It was important to us that Christmas, in particular, be…

How to Create Epic Halloween Costumes

Start with an adorable dog or baby. Add a dash of classic children’s tales. And a little bit of Disney. I didn’t always love Halloween, but once our beloved dog and son joined our lives, it has become one of my favorite holidays. Every year, I love coming up with costumes for my family, each…