Wedding Kimono Displayed at Hina Matsuri Festival


This beautiful wedding kimono was displayed at the Hina Matsuri festival.  An iro-kakeshita kimono with amazing detailed embroidery.


Another type of wedding kimono is all white, the shiromuku kimono.  It is all white as the bride indicates her willingness to take the groom’s family colors.

The bride wears a type of veil or hood covering her face called a wataboshi.  The groom removes it at the end of the ceremony and underneath she wears another head covering called tsunokakushi.  (Tsuno means horns.)    This head covering represents the bride’s willingness to let go of jealousy and indicates her obedience to her new husband.


These colorful flowers are for good fortune and a deep connection to nature.


Photographs do not do this beautiful kimono justice.  I am grateful I am able to expirience artistry such as this at the festival each year.






Otafuku-San, the Goddess of Mirth!

Here are several beautiful examples displayed at the recent Hina Matsuri Festival.




With her smiling face she represents every woman. Her small mouth confirms she does not use unnecessary words.



Displaying Otafuku-San will insure a happy home or business and bring good fortune to all who come into her presence.


Hina Matsuri

Thank you Mitsuru for sharing your sister’s doll display with us and the song. I love the picture of you and your sister as children. Our Hina Matsuri Festival is this weekend in Arvada, Colorado.

Nagataya Kyoto Japanese Calligraphy, Shodō

Today we celebrate Hina Matsuri, the girls festival. The dolls in the picture are from my parents home in Japan, we do the display of the dolls more or less a week before Hina Matsuri. We did the display of Hina Matsuri because of my sister. My grand father bought the dolls for her long time ago.
It is said that the dolls protect girls from suffering diseases, bad luck and bring them happiness in future. There are several supersticions about this celebration, it is said that if you don´t put away the dolls after Hina Matsuri the girls will remain single extra time. My mum was very concerned about that!
There are several figures but the most important are on the top of the pyramid they are called odairisama and ohinasama, and represent the Emperors figure. Then, there are other figures below other members…

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Pictures From Past Hina Matsuri Festivals


This is the doll exhibit room.  Families from the Japanese community and others exhibit their dolls each year in March in Arvada, Colorado.  Free and open to the public.

Having this extraordinary collection of dolls in one place is an amazing experience.

I am a sansei or third generation and I am just learning about the dolls myself.  Please excuse me if I have some of the facts wrong, I would appreciate your corrections.  I have no one to learn from except the Internet!


Here is an example of one altar, the Emperor and Empress are in the center top.  The members of their court arranged below them.

The lower steps are in this order:  three Court Ladies (with sake equipment); five Musicians; two Ministers (one old and wise the other one young); the three protectors or Samurai; items from inside the palace; and the bottom platform, items used outside the palace (lacquer food boxes for trips) or items from outside the palace.


This is a display of origami for sale to the public.

hina Matsuri 2

There will also be a table where you can learn simple origami and a table where your name will be written in Japanese characters.

hina Matsuri 1

Here is another example of the Emperor and Empress. Behind them is a folding screen.  The round table holds sweet treats.  The diamond table holds diamond shaped rice cakes.


There will also be flower arranging displays, bonsai displays and live entertainment also free of charge.

Bento lunch boxes will be offered for sale in the early afternoon while supplies last.

Hope to see you there and here is a link to more information for March 2016.

Arigato gosaimasu!




Hina Matsuri Festival at Simpson


Doll’s Day or Girls’ Day.  In Japan it is held every March 3rd.  At Simpson our Festival is held the first full weekend of every March, this year March 7th and 8th.

The Festival is open to the public and free of charge.

The families in the Japanese community display their amazing dolls, many of which have been in their families for generations.

Also on display are Bonsai (miniature plants and trees) and Ikebana (flower arranging).  Very welcome as we wait for spring to finally replace winter.

The ladies prepare Bento Boxes for lunch each day which are extremely popular and are sold out quickly.

A constant parade of activity on the stage in the gymnasium including Taiko Drums, Martial Arts and variety of music.

Hope you can join us!


Keiro-no-Hi at Simpson UMC

Respect of the Aged Day, or Keiro-no-Hi, was established as a national holiday in Japan in 1966 to express respect for the elders in the community, to recognize and thank them for their contributions to society, to celebrate their long lives and offer special gifts to bring even more longevity to their lives.  It was initially held every September 15th but since 2003 it has been held on the 3rd Monday of every September.

At Simpson United Methodist Church we celebrate Keiro-no-Hi in the fall.  This year it was held on October 26th.  A celebration luncheon was provided for those in the Simpson community that were 80 years of age or older.  The ladies made baked salmon and an asian chicken salad and the congregation contributed special dishes to share.


The special gift this year was Manju, a Japanese dessert. The outside is made from sweetened rice powder or sweetened pounded rice and inside is a delicious filling of anko red bean paste made from boiled azuki beans and sugar or other similar bean paste.  The children of the congregation and their Sunday School teacher folded many origami boxes and inside was placed a Manju and an individually wrapped green tea bag.



imageThe congregation of Simpson UMC truly appreciate and respect their elders.  We are especially thankful for their establishing the Simpson community so many years ago.  All look forward to this celebration each year and we are grateful for the opportunity this particular mini festival allows in that all are able to reconnect and bond with each other on this special day.


Kishibojin Oeshiki – Zoshigaya This Weekend

Want to go to Japan for a festival?

Tokyobling's Blog

If you are in Tokyo this weekend and not interested in the massive Kawagoe festival taking place in Saitama Prefecture just north of Tokyo I recommend visiting the far smaller but almost as crowded Oeshiki ceremony at Kishibojin in Zoshigaya, a 10 minute walk south of Ikebukuro station. Kishibojin temple is one of those religious mysteries of which there are so many in Japan. Even the name is unclear as it changes from different maps and signs, and it is a hybrid Shrine/Temple celebrating Oeshiki which is a distinctly buddhist ceremony a week later than all the other Oeshiki ceremonies, it is officially called a shrine but it has no torii gate but a small Inarijinja. I have visited dozens of times but I still haven’t unravelled this one. More studies needed!

Yesterday when I took these photos was the first evening of the three night event. Tonight and tomorrow…

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Jennifer Lim at Arts & Crafts Showcase 10-19-2014, Rescued Broken Jewelry

I took my friend Jennifer Lim an huge plastic bag of broken and “I’m tired of this piece” jewelry.

I had been saving all this jewelry with no idea what I was going to do with it.  Since at least half of it was broken I couldn’t take it to the thrift store.

She does this amazing thing with bits of forgotten or discarded jewelry, she re-purposes the bits and pieces and makes entirely new pieces of jewelry!

I wish I had taken a picture of that plastic bag of broken jewelry, sigh, but here are a few examples of what she did with those castaways:


Thank you Jennifer for being so fun and giving me back some memories!



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If you would like to see Jennifer’s creative pieces in person, bracelets, earrings and necklaces, join us at Simpson UMC on 10-19-2014.  Her prices are unbelievably reasonable.  All proceeds she donates to the Simpson UMC Chancel Choir for special music and adding musicians to help our extremely talented pianist with Christmas and Easter Cantatas.


A light lunch will also be served until sold out.  There are many amazing artists that display each year and you will not be disappointed!

P.S.  If you would like to donate some broken jewelry Jennifer will make it into something amazing which she sells and donates all proceeds in support of the Simpson UMC Chancel Choir.  Bring your plastic bag of bits and pieces!

Favorite Artist at 25th Annual Friendship and American Indian Cultural Celebration


Angelique was filled with good energy.  Her art was also filled with good energy, happy and moving.


Dream horses she made to ride to your dreams.



Cheerful jewelry to pick up your spirits!