The Afternoon Hanami Picnic at Yoyogi Park

What a perfect day for a picnic.

My baby sister N was staying with me for a week and my other sister Y also came down for the weekend, so we decided to have an early hanami picnic at Yoyogi Park after church last weekend. It was such a warm day and I cannot tell you how amazing it felt to sit under the sun and feel all that warmth. It was actually a bit early for the cherry blossoms but that didn’t even matter.

I brought my ridiculously bright and cheerful picnic rug and we ordered veggie burgers and rice krispies treats from my favorite little burger shop Arms. We also had oranges, thanks to my parents who live in the orange kingdom of Japan. Pretty much my favorite kind of picnic feast!

We bumped into an old friend and dragged him into our game of daifugo. Card games may be old school but it’s still a lot of fun. And you know what they say, playing cards can bring out one’s true inner-self. It’s so true. My sisters and I get quite competitive.

It was an afternoon full of laughs, although the card game did produce a few screams as well. We had a really great picnic and I’m hoping that this is just the beginning of many more to come!

Here are some photos:

The Sakura Trees in Shinjuku Gyoen

A super short post to tell you that you should probably be in Shinjuku Gyoen today!
This is what it looks like from above. Look at all those different shades of pink, so pretty! The cherry blossoms from last year were amazing and I’m sure they are this year, too. I love that there’s never a season you can’t enjoy at Shinjuku Gyoen. x

The Beauty of Shinjuku Gyoen

The end of the year is always a busy time for me (and everyone else, it seems).
But last Thursday, I woke up tired after another night of nomikai (which was really fun!) and needed some time to myself. So I went to the one place I can always count on to calm me and at the same time fill me with energy…Shinjuku Gyoen.
I was pretty sure all the leaves would have fallen by now and I would just be seeing branches against the blue sky. That would have been enough for me.
Well, I was wrong.
Even though the ginkgo trees had started to loose their yellow leaves by the dozen, the Japanese maple trees had just started to change color everywhere. Spots of orange, red, and purple could be seen throughout the park paths, lit up by the rays of sunlight. And it was beautiful.

This is the one place. The one place I know where I can always come to relax. To hear myself think without the chaos. And always leave feeling refreshed, even if it’s during a short lunch break.
 Hope you have a moment to of quiet or calm during this busy season, too! x

The Picnic at Shinjuku Gyoen

Ever since I got my hands on this fabulous picnic blanket, I’ve been a picnic addict!
So last Saturday, my bff and I had a picnic at Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden. The great thing is that she just moved into my neighborhood (whoop whoop!) so we just met up at the corner of the street and walked to the park together. I love that we can do that now!
We stopped by Freshness Burger to grab lunch for our picnic. Have you tried their vegetable burgers? They are so good. They have a bean burger and a mushroom burger and I am SO happy they are back on the menu. I think they are popular among non-vegetarians, too. This time I went with the mushroom burger set. 
We spent the whole afternoon just laying around and relaxing. There were a lot of families with children also doing the same thing and we ended up chatting with a few of the little people. So cute. All in all it was a great afternoon, especially since the typhoon came and it was all rain the following two days.
Do you have a favorite picnic spot? x

The Sakura in Shinjuku Gyoen

My love for this gorgeous park just grows and grows.
I heard that Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden was in full bloom
and couldn’t pass up the chance of seeing it all myself 🙂

Shinjuku Gyoen has over 1,300 cherry trees within the park.
About 420 trees are the ever popular Somei Yoshino.
But what’s so great about this place is that
they have SO MANY different types of cherry trees.
You can enjoy an array of colors and shapes.
And the greatest thing about it is
you can enjoy the cherry blossoms for a longer time
because they all reach full bloom at different times…YAY!!!

And tell me if this beautiful reflection on the lake
doesn’t make you want to run to Shinjuku Gyoen right now? ;D

The Hanami in Yoyogi Park

Yes, you heard right.
We braved the hanami crowds
and headed to Yoyogi Park this weekend!
It was a very impromptu hanami
as sakura season came quite early this year.
But I’m glad we got to do it!
Drinks, sandwiches, and snacks…perfect for hanami 😀

Cherry blossoms scattered above our heads
It was a pretty chilly day
and it wasn’t the perfect blue sky.
But we had a grand ole time under the pretty cherry blossoms!
And you know what?
It wasn’t as crowded as I thought!
We were there from around 11am to 3pm but
there was plenty of space around us.
I guess all those rumors that Yoyogi Park
is jam packed during hanami season is a myth?
Maybe I’ll make hanami with friends an annual thing 😀