What children remember the most is the time that we spend with them. After they bring you cards and kisses, say thank you to your little ones. Show them how much all of the love they give means to you with the perfect Mommy and me day. We have a few ideas for making memories here in Japan that may be just what you need this Mother’s Day.
Northern Japan has stunning gardens, shrines and nature trails. Search for plants, flowers or bugs that are indigenous to Japan. Discover shrines and the hidden trails surrounding them. Get lost in imagination as you explore new places together. The Misawa Central Park has unique playground equipment and even a mini zip line, if you’re into Pokémon Go, this is the best spot to play the game.
Toes in the Sand
Miss Veedol Beach is only a 20-minute drive from base and has a big red plane that little ones always love to see and learn about. You can have a picnic, play in the sand and collect seashells. Bring your finds home and start a sea jar to add to throughout the summer. Even when it’s a bit chilly, dipping your toes and watching waves is always a great way to spend time.
There are many more beaches in the area, but some require a bit of a drive—car tunes and Lawson stops! Osuka Beach in Hachinohe is one of Japan’s top 100 beaches and has “singing” sands that make sounds underneath your feet. At about an hour drive from base, Osuka provides breathtaking “vacation-like” views. Play in the sand, relax and sing a Disney song or twenty there and back.
Spend a Curious Day in the City
With so many great things to eat, see and experience, the city can be the best for making memories. Play crane games, shop for a bit, hear live music and find the best fresh bakery bread or Japanese produce. Let your kid pick out something that is special to them that’s unique to Japan. Play the day away at Hachinohe’s Children’s Land or, for children in kindergarten or younger, head to the Misawa Kid’s Center, right here in our town.
Make it Educational and Awesome
Galaxies, sea creatures, history, oh my! The Misawa Aviation & Space Museum has a rocket ride that, according to my daughter, “Goes up! Then down… then up and down, up and down. It’s cool!” Travel into space and remind your dreamer that the sky isn’t even close to the limit. You can head to Hachinohe to learn about the “Jomon” people, who lived in this area 5,000 years ago, at the Korekawa Archaeological Museum. Take a trip under the sea in Aomori at Asamushi Aquarium, set on stunning Mutsu Bay. Also check out the Aomori Museum of Art, with over 120 three-dimensional works.
Take a Break
After a day of exploring, make a kid-friendly fruit cocktail, sit back and let your kids paint your nails terribly. Fruit cocktails for kids are adorable and easy to make. Let your mini me pick out their favorite fruits and fizzy flavors. Add an umbrella and voilà! Snuggle together with your favorite movie while your nails dry and let business drift away.
Our little ones are on loan to us, one day they won’t be so little anymore. When we look back, we’ll remember it was the crinkle of their nose, the funny lines and surprisingly wise words that meant the most. At all ages and phases, they are extraordinary. This Mother’s Day, we hope you share hugs, laughs, and special moments here in Japan that you’ll both cherish for years to come.
A cute drink with a cute name too. Have a blast and welcome warm weather by making some refreshing drinks together!
- ½ tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon water
- ½ teaspoon coconut extract
- 12 ounces Sprite
- blue food coloring
- Mix ½ tablespoon of sugar and one tablespoon of water in a small bowl
- Stir briefly and microwave for about 30 seconds to dissolve the sugar. Set the bowl to the side to allow for cooling.
- Fill a glass with ice and pour in 12 ounces of Sprite.
- Add ½ teaspoon of coconut extract and blue food coloring to the small bowl of sugar & water and stir.
- Poor the blue mixture into your glass of Sprite.
- Make your glass of ocean water come to life with a Swedish Fish candy and a fun straw! Run a piece of twine through a lifesaver and tie it together to place on your straw. Your little one will love this fun, summery drink!
Orange Creamsicle Smoothie
- 1 can (11 ounces) mandarin oranges
- 1/2 cup pineapple (frozen chunks)
- 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
- 1 cup vanilla soy milk
- 1 tablespoon honey
- Open can of oranges and drain. Place in a plastic zip bag and freeze for two hours or until frozen.
Place the frozen fruit in a blender or food processor.
Add the remaining ingredients and puree until the mixture reaches a creamy texture.
- 1 orange sliced to desired thickness
- 1 lemon, sliced
- 1 lime, sliced
- 2 apples cored and chopped
- 3 cups red grape juice
- 1 cups white grape juice
- 1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice
- 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lime juice
- 1 bottle sparkling apple cider
- Layer half of the fruit at the bottom of a of a four-quart glass pitcher and repeat for a second layer. Pour in the juices and use a long spoon to gently stir until well mixed. Cover with a lid or plastic film, and chill in the fridge for at least four hours. When ready to serve, pour in the sparkling cider to the pitcher and stir. Serve over ice. Cheers and enjoy!
- 40.5253° N, 141.5846° E
Miss Veedol Beach
- 40.6762° N, 141.4383° E
Hachinohe Children’s Park (Children’s Land & Botanical Gardens)
- 40°28’34.67″N 141°30’45.60″E
Misawa Kid’s Center
- 40.684625, 141.367999
Misawa Aviation & Science Museum
- 40.7082° N, 141.3905° E
Korekawa Archaelogical Museum
- 40.8975° N, 140.8627° E
Miss Veedol Plane History
In 1931, Clyde Pangborn flew Miss Veedol across the Pacific Ocean from Misawa to Wenatchee, Wisconsin; the first of its journey, a 5,000-mile flight.