Autumn Bucket List

Autumn Bucket List recap

It seems like the end of December is a little late to be talking about an Autumn Bucket List, but when you think about it, winter technically just started a little over a week ago. If you add the fact that weather in Tokyo still feels like fall, updating you on fall happenings really shouldn’t be that strange at all! So, without further adieu, let’s talk about my 2015 Autumn Bucket List! #noregrets 😉

  1. Try kirigami– Kirigami, the art of folding and cutting, can really make some neat projects. I was a lot busier than I expected over the past few months, but I did manage to do this quick kirigami pattern out of a 100 yen store kirigami book.
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  2. Go to Studio Ghibli- Once again, we were unable to get tickets for Ghibli in the fall. On the bright side, we were able to get tickets for winter, and we ended up going on Christmas Day! We were a little surprised that after all the hype and difficulty getting tickets the museum wasn’t bigger. We also couldn’t believe there is no English at all throughout the museum (and even the English brochure didn’t offer any information other than rules), but we still had a nice time. I really enjoyed the Christmas decorations at the museum, and also walking in the surrounding area (Kichijoji).
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  3. Start sewing projects for baby– I started working on this cute sewing kit purchased from etsy.
    hedgehog cross stitchI used to lack the patience for sewing, but I feel like as long as there is an interesting podcast or video going in the background, I really enjoy sewing. I definitely have a renewed appreciation for all the beautiful sewing work my mother has created–especially after realizing it can take hours to complete only 10 rows or so of stitching!
  4. Go on a picnic– Chad and I had a picnic with our students, and also had “mini” picnics a couple of times (like when we shared those nice pastries at the Rikugien Gardens).
  5. Go on a mini trip & view autumn leaves– in October we went to Kyoto and rode the Sagano Romantic Train. We also went on the Hozugawa River Boat Ride before biking a bit around Arashiyama.The leaves weren’t changing too much yet, but we were able to do lots of autumn leaf viewing after that trip.
    IMG_3360                                 We met an oni on the Sugamo Romantic Train…!
    IMG_3346               One of over 1200 statues at Otagi Nenbutsuji in Arashiyama
  6. Make a birdy mobile– I totally didn’t get a chance to make this, but here is what I had in mind:
    birdy mobile via pinterest
  7. Go to Mt. Takao– I was super proud that at 29 weeks I was able to hike all the way to the top of Mt. Takao!
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  8. Make Halloween Needle Felts– I made two, and blogged about the projects here.
  9. Holiday/Maternity Leave Planning– I definitely worked on this part of my list throughout the fall, especially in December! With the holidays I did all of the expected: had fun finding special gifts, wrapping presents, preparing yummy food… And for maternity leave, I’ve been trying to do yoga and/or squats every day, to go for a daily walk, and to do part or all of one task I’ve got listed on my To-Do List (for example, washing new baby clothes or organizing a closet to prepare things for sending home). Busy, busy!
  10. Get necessary items ready for baby– We still have a few things to get ready for baby’s arrival, but we have been very lucky to have friends and family helping out with a lot of the basic necessities. We have been super minimal about purchases and requests as 1) we’ve heard that new parents often have WAY more than they need, 2) if we do need something we don’t have, we can always pick up those essentials as we go, and 3) we aren’t planning on staying in Japan for very long after baby is born so we don’t want to accumulate too much.
    IMG_4072Thirty five and a half weeks pregnant at The Tokyo New National Theater to see The Nutcracker

I thought about making my first ever winter bucket list for this year, but aside from going to The Nutcracker ballet (which we did a couple days before Christmas, by the way!), my primary goal for this winter is to meet our little girl and settle into being a mommy! I think that will be more than enough to keep me busy.

What are some things you did over the fall, and what have you got planned for the winter?

xx Caitlyn

Autumn Bucket List

Autumn 2014 Bucket List Recap

Even though it is technically still Autumn, in Michigan we’ve already gotten quite a bit of snow to remind us winter is on its way! I thought I’d give a recap of what I’ve been able to scratch off my Autumn Bucket List so far this year so I can get started on creating one for the winter ahead. As with my Summer 2014 Bucket List Recap, many of the links will take you to posts about the topic so you can remember along with me 🙂

Autumn Bucket List 2014
1. Go apple picking √
2. Make monte cristos √ (This year I made this yummy recipe with my Strawberry Rhubarb Jam, and last year I made this one!)
3. Go to Crane’s in the City for lunch √
4. Make amazing apple pie √ (More details to come!)
5. Make apple rose tartlets
6. Make sweet potato bread √
IMG_1404This sweet potato bread recipe was so, so good!
7. Make apple butter √ (recipe here!)
8. Make an apple roll cake
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9. Make acorn crafts √
How to Paint Acorns | Upcycled Garden Style | Scoop.it
I tried making these…. (Source)
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…and these! I was inspired to make the little gnomes above by this etsy shop.
10. Carve pumpkins
11. Have a ramen party
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12. Have a wine & cheese night (Though we did join a Raclette party which I hope to blog about soon!)
13. Have a chocolate tasting party (No party, but I did try plenty, and even reviewed this one)
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14. Eat caramel apples √
15. Make homemade ice cream (I swear I’ll get to this one of these days!)
16. Have an Oktoberfest party
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17. Go to the Detroit Beer Festival √
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More pictures can be found on my instagram
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19. Make name silhouette art √
IMG_1501I got this idea from a painting my mom had with her name in this style, and I can’t wait to experiment more with name silhouettes in the future!
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21. Writing challenges 1/week (I only did two, one of which can be found here…)
22. Restart book club √ (In October we read Your Face in Mine, and this month we’re reading the latest Haruki Murakami novel)
23. Try Ethiopian food √
24. Catch up on art journaling (But I’ve been starting to gather pictures and other memorabilia!)
25. Get officially certified as a coffee master √
IMG_1541Weeeeeeeeeeeeee! I got certified yesterday!! 😀
26. Make Jack-O-Lantern tartlets
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28. Dandelion blowing √
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30. Make a fairy garden (But I did start collecting supplies!)
31. Go mushroom hunting (The weather got too cold, too fast!)
I definitely was a busy girl over the fall months, and I think with our move to Tokyo ahead, I will likely stay that way! What kinds of fun have you been up to this Autumn?
xx Caitlyn
P.S. Don’t forget that tomorrow is the end of the second Little Snail Thrift Store Challenge! I am looking forward to seeing your projects, and will be posting the next challenge soon!!