Monday, November 15, 2010


Arriving at Nakatsu Jinja. Baachan is directing the girls over to the water to wash their hands, and thereby ritually purify, before entering the shrine.


At the shrine attached to Nakatsu castle, right next to the main shrine. You have GOT to watch this to the very end and catch the "You are crazy, Mum" look Amy gives me at the very end

Portraits of my precious three-year old. We went to the shrine to get a blessing for her on her third year. 7-5-3 is for three-year old girls and boys, five-year old boys and seven-year old girls.
Above, at the shrine, below at Baachan's house, in the zashiki formal sitting room, showing her kimono from the back without the jacket. It's just tied up like a dressing gown, a bit heavy, but not tight or uncomfortable. They wear an obi for the first time at seven. However, she refused for two hours to even try it on, we sized it up against her body for sewing (it's loosely sewn at the shoulders and waist to fit, the thread will be removed before it's stored again.) Eventually we convinced her to wear it by promising her ice cream AND chocolate. One was not enough!

I forgot to tell Kanji we were going to do the 7-5-3 this day! So he didn't schedule the afternoon off...

Amy and Lena are neither five nor seven, but having them put on a kimono was one method we thought of to convince Erica to wear hers! We almost gave up to try another day, but suddenly she changed her mind, and we were all in a rush after that to get everyone's hair and accessories fixed up and in the car in case she changed her mind!

Me and the girls outside the castle shrine.

With Baachan and Aunty Mie, champion kimono dressers. Amy said her belt was firm but not uncomfortable, just perfect! Lena's was a bit loose, and they had to keep adjusting it, but Mie will not tie them tightly after her daughter Mami fainted once because her obi was too tight!

The promised ice cream! A rabbit-shaped sundae. On the right, with her precious, her iphone...


Yes, okay, it's pretty mad giving kids in expensive silk kimonos ice cream, but...

One very tired little girl at the end of the day! Part of her problem was of course, that she was just tired. It was our second event of the day - in the morning we'd been to the Culture Festival at the technical college where I teach, and they had jumped on a bouncy castle, and played ball games. And there we were, trying to shove a heavy kimono on her instead of settling her down for her nap!

Two video extras:

Little toes!!! Tabi are funny-looking things, and most intriguing for a three-year old kid the first time she put them on....

... as are long kimono sleeves!


thefukases said...

Congratulations and how cute is she??! All your girls look gorgeous and you look great, too. And I am amazed at your courage in eating ice-cream in kimono! @_@

maggietoki said...

LOL at Heather's ice-cream comment(and agree btw!). Congratulations and love the fact that all your girls dressed up in kimonos.All 3 are just gorgeous.I suppose you will have a breeze deciding what photo to use for the nenga-jo this year;-)

Vicky said...

Lovely, lovely girlies! All four of you!

But the cutest of all is Erica. I love her little shining head of hair..... sigh.

Bryn said...

Gah! They are all so stunning! I DO NOT envy you 10 years from now with those three beauties as teenagers! Keep them in Japan!!! Tons of great pix! The first one at the top is my favorite!

anchan said...

Wowee, how gorgeous!!

Sammy said...

Wow, I can't wait until my daughter is 3 so I can take her for ther blessing. I have so much to look forward to!