Showing posts from January, 2017

Japan`s old wives tales for bringing on labor

We probably all know the old wives tales for bringing on labor in the west...

Spicy food, pineapple, dates/prunes, raspberry leaf tea, castor oil, walking, s*x, nip*le massage, acupressure, stairs and bumpy car rides and a few more.
How about in Japan?

The old wives tales or 陣痛ジンクス `labor jinx` that are common in Japan are...


Yakiniku - There does not seem to be any good reason for this, women in Japan tend to crave this grilled meat in their final weeks of pregnancy and then go into labor soon after.

Oronamin C - Although there does not seem to be any reason for this either, lots of women swear by this energy drink to bring on labor (be careful though, because it does contain caffeine).

Curry - Some people swear by spicy foods as a catalyst for labor. Mexican food or foods with hot chilis might help bring on labor. Be careful that these foods don’t give you indigestion in this late stage of pregnancy.

Raspberry leaf tea - This tea can strengthen and tone the uterus, and can help the mu…

Akachan honpo (アカチャンホンポ) new point card

Akachan honpo (akachan means `baby` in Japanese) is a maternity, baby and kids` store that is famous in Japan for its large selection and reasonable prices.

There are branches all over the country, stand-alone-stores as well as stores inside shopping malls. 

Old card

New card

Akachan honpo has released a new point card and until the end of March, is offering some special bonuses for pregnant women (even for 2nd or 3rd pregnancies/children) who apply for a card.

I signed up for a new point card and received this bundle of items too. It contains an original design 出生届 (registration of a birth); a プレママ セット (mother-to-be bundle) containing samples of diapers, breast-pads etc in a cute eco-tote-bag; ポイント10倍スペシャルクーポン (coupons for increasing the points you collect on purchases to 10x); and a handy shopping guide for new mums.

You can apply for the new point card in store, or online (on your PC or smartphone here). If you apply online, you will receive an email with a special code which you must br…

I love Minne (not the mouse)

I have written in the past about my love for Etsy (an online shopping network for handmade goods around the world). I continue to shop at Etsy and still have a really great respect for all the amazing, talented people making clothes, accessories, toys, stationery, decorations and much more. I will have to do an updated post soon on some of my recent purchases!

But in the meantime I wanted to rave about Minne. Minne is Japan`s version of Etsy, where people sell the things they have made by hand. Of course (being limited geographically to just one country), the selection is more limited than Etsy, but shipping is very cheap and the quality of the goods (the ones that I have purchased so far), the packaging and the delivery time are second to none.

Minne is all in Japanese, so if you can't read Japanese, you might want to give it a miss. However, with my limited ability and the help of some online translation tools (talking about you BING), I have successfully searched for, bought, rec…

Decaf at Starbucks Japan

Yay Starbucks!
This is great news for pregnant or nursing women, or anyone who doesnt like the caffeine hit that comes with coffee...

Starbucks Japan has introduced (starting yesterday 11/1) decaf coffee drinks!

Check out the menu items below...

Decaf latte (hot/iced) Decaf caramel macchiato (hot/iced) Decaf cappuccino (hot/iced) Decaf mocha (hot/iced) Decaf white mocha (hot/iced) Decaf americano (hot/iced)
And they claim that their caffeine removal process is chemical free, allowing the great taste and flavor to remain in the coffee. The process removes 99% of caffeine! Awesome!
Happy coffee drinking :)
Fran xx

Pregnant in Japan - third trimester essentials

I am now well into my third trimester with just 4 weeks (and 2 days) to go until my due date. I am feeing pretty good (all things considered) and am enjoying the last few weeks as a mama-of-one while it lasts.

Being pregnant in Japan is probably similar to anywhere else, but there are things that are recommended here that I will share, in case you are interested...

For the belly...
Japanese old-wives tales are still very common, and one of the most common things I hear is about keeping warm. Even those women who are pregnant in summer are encouraged to wrap their bellies, making sure the baby doesn't get cold. Keeping the feet and ankles warm is also very important and I have been told several times by well meaning doctors, friends and even strangers. 

So, there are a HUGE selection of belly wraps and supports available in-store and online. They range from simple fluffy waistbands to high-tech undergarments as you will see below.

This is the popularity ranking of belly-supports on a we…

Happy New Year 2017!

Happy new year and 明けましておめでとうございます!

This year is the year of the rooster in Japan, which is the second time I have been here in Japan during my `birth animal` year. Yes I am a rooster, and our second baby will be a rooster too!

The rooster is the 10th animal in the Chinese zodiac and it is said that `roosters` are unlucky during their birth year... it is advised for them to be extra careful during 2017!

Lucky and unlucky things for `roosters` are...

We celebrated our first shrine visit at Ishikiri Shrine and ate lots of yummy Japanese street food like takoyaki, taiyaki and yakisoba! 

I hope this year will be great for all of you!

Fran xx

Most popular baby names in Japan for 2016

It has come to that time in my pregnancy when we are discussing baby names. As we did with Aiden, I wrote a list of names (mostly English names) that I like, and then passed it to Yoshi who is thinking about how they will sound in Japanese (along with the Japanese characters that we could use).
It is a hard process, especially with girls names it seems!

Anyway, in my searches I came across the top boy and girl Japanese names for 2016 here...

The top boy names are... Haruto Souta Yuuto Haruki Sousuke Riku Yuma Yuito Aoi Takumi
And the girls... Hana Sakura Yui Rio Akari Aoi Koharu Honoka Ichika Sana
Nothing too surprising there, but interesting that one name appears on both lists... Aoi.
*It seems that there are lots of different `popular names` lists out there, and I have already seen 4-5 with completely different names haha! Anyway it seems that the words for flora and fauna do seem popular (Hana = flower, Sakura = cherry blossom etc.)!

30 days to go...

I`ve been looking back at my old pregnancy posts; if you've read my blog for a while you`ll know I updated lots of bump shots and progress updates when I was pregnant with Aiden, and comparing things. Everything looks about the same, although I haven't had any baby-size measurements since November! I guess if everything seems to be progressing normally, they don't bother with too many scans at my current hospital.

Anyway, today marks the 30-day countdown to baby number 2!

Getting exciting!!

Hope you're all doing well in the cold weather!

Fran xx