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User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 10, 2017 6:12 PM (UTC)
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The beautiful persimmons on display in Japan piqued my interest in them. I so want to like them. I’ve made an effort to continue to try things I don’t like knowing that I could change my mind at any moment, and I’m an adventurous eater by nature, so liking persimmons shouldn’t be too difficult—right?
I didn’t like mushrooms or tea as a kid—now I can’t imagine life without them. I didn’t like uni until a few years ago, and liking raw oysters is a recent switch for me. Now it’s time for persimmons!
I do like them them dried, and they were a yummy addition to my yogurt yesterday. There’s a recipe for roasted persimmons with mushrooms and kale that I’m going to try out. Let me know of any good recipes you recommend.
#hachiya #fuyu #persimmon #kaki
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 9, 2017 5:06 PM (UTC)

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Found some bird’s eye chili at the farmers market. A large bundle of these was only $1! Bird’s eyes are also known as Thai chili, although they originated in Mexico. Lots of Southeast Asian cuisines use these. You can use them to make some of your favorite Thai and Vietnamese dipping sauces. They’re in the same Scoville range as a milder habanero—a lot spicier than a jalapeño—so wear gloves when slicing into these!
#birdseyechilli #chilipeppers #thaichili #farmersmarket
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 8, 2017 6:41 PM (UTC)
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Needing a bit of #om right now. Looking forward to the weekend! #happyfriday
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 7, 2017 10:15 PM (UTC)
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I forgot my phone at home yesterday. It was discombobulating and freeing at the same time. I’ve noticed more and more, life tends to place you in situations where you can feel two opposing ways at the same time. Sometimes I don’t know what to do with that, and other times I thoroughly enjoy it. Yesterday it was a bit of both.
Even though it was taken in deep November, this photo makes me think of both fall and spring—light and dark, warm and cold. #allthefeels
#uenopark #ginko #tokyo #aseasonalshift
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 6, 2017 4:25 PM (UTC)

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More from the weekend’s farmers market. We made it there the last hour it was open and still managed to eat yummy El Salvadoran pupusas, buy flowers, chilis & persimmons, and some fresh holy basil (tulsi). Tulsi is known as a kind of "elixir of life" in Ayurveda and is said to help with stress. Anyone stressed? 😬 You can prepare it as a tea or add its leaves to a stir fry. #tulsi #holybasil
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 5, 2017 3:12 PM (UTC)
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I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.
-Mary Anne Radmacher
#kisovalley #nakasendo #intothewoods #japan
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 4, 2017 4:30 PM (UTC)

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Persimmons were all over the farmers market this weekend. After seeing them everywhere in Japan, I had to get some—they’re so beautiful in a strange and ethereal way. As far as eating them—I enjoy persimmons baked or cooked/dried/infused in things. How should I prepare these? Have any good recipes and ways to eat these beauties?
#persimmon #aseasonalshift #tistheseason #f52grams #holidaytable
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 3, 2017 3:58 PM (UTC)
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Instructions for living a life:
Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it.
~Mary Oliver
#persimmon #kaki #kisovalley #nakasendo
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 2, 2017 5:16 PM (UTC)
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It’s December y’all, and I’m already planning for the new year—ceramics classes, photography, travel, building an app... 🧐 opportunities abound. What are you dreaming of for 2018?
#nakasendo #aseasonalshift #thatlighttho
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Dec 1, 2017 5:00 PM (UTC)
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What is it about succulents?? And when will they give us a succulent emoji? #succulentsofinsta #tokyo
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 29, 2017 4:57 PM (UTC)
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Chrysanthemums, called kiku in Japanese, are from China, but per usual, the Japanese have adopted something from somewhere else and made it their own. They’ve cultivated breeds that look almost alien—alien in the most beautiful way.
They represent fall in Japan, but are also prevalent in much of the culture—the monarchy is called “the Chrysanthemum Crown”. Japanese passports have a chrysanthemum stamp on them.
#wildisbeautiful #chrysanthemum #flora
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 28, 2017 2:45 PM (UTC)
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I like to say I’m a coastal girl, but the mountains work for me too. #intothewoods #kisovalley #nakasendo
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 27, 2017 6:49 AM (UTC)
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Heading home now. It’s been an amazing trip filled with friends, family, food, adventure... I’m grateful to have friends and family on the other side of the world, although there’s a constant longing that comes when your life is like this. I wish we were all closer geographically, but this brings a richness to our lives and relationships that might not otherwise exist. Still waiting on someone to create a Star Trek teleporter... #alwaysintransit #kisovalley #japan #fallleaves #nakasendo
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 26, 2017 11:08 PM (UTC)
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And in other news...I stopped by a flea/green market @gogreenmarket in a botanical garden in Tokyo yesterday and found a mini-succulent garden workshop in progress. There were a few tables full of Japanese women and girls, armed with tweezers, placing the tiniest of succulent bits into potted soil. This is so Japanese—the focus on the detail and working with tiny things to make something beautiful. I wanted to sit down and join them—this is my jam! 😂 #succulents #gogreenmarket #tokyostories
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 25, 2017 10:45 PM (UTC)
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Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
~Mary Oliver
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 24, 2017 11:17 PM (UTC)
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There’s so much more to this than what you see. The sound of the water, the cold air, the light snow falling, the smell of the forest. #magical #kisovalley #nakasendo
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 24, 2017 2:17 PM (UTC)
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Peppery goodness along the Nakasendō.
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 23, 2017 10:37 PM (UTC)
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This old village—
not a single house
without persimmon trees.
~Matsuo Bashō (松尾 芭蕉)
User Image aikodesigns Posted: Nov 22, 2017 9:56 PM (UTC)
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Thanksgiving day comes early on this side of the world. I’ll be spending time with family today, appreciating the little bit of time we have to be together this year. That’s what happens when you live in different countries—something that goes back several generations in my family. We are immigrants and adventurers, and I’m appreciating all that that has added to my life. Happy Thanksgiving 🦃🍁🍽
This is Mt. Fuji, shot from the Nozomi Super Express. Nozomi (のぞみ) means “wish”, and this train is the fastest Shinkansen on the Tōkaidō line, from Tokyo to Kyoto. We were going about 186 mph when I shot this. People gasped when the mountain came into view. It always perks people up—even those who have seen it over and over again.
Fuji-san is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, because of its beauty and influence on artists and culture. I climbed this mountain and watched the sun rise from its peak. Another thing I’m grateful to have experienced in this country. What are you grateful for?
#happythanksgiving #mtfuji #fujisan #japan