Monthly Archives: November 2010

Travel Japan – The Master of Gold Leaf

See the complete post here.

Noguchi-san a 5th generation gold leaf master




In the afternoon of my first day in Kyoto, Kiyo took me to the museum of Noguchi-san. I was going to see how he designs obi with gold leaf. I expected to find that he takes gold leaf and presses it onto fabric and then uses the fabric to make obi. The reality was much more interesting than I imagined.

When I walked in his workroom I said,

You have the sun in here.

The sun was shining and these obi with gold leaf were catching it.

Noguchi-san uses gold leaf and other metals for different colors.

The pieces of gold or silver leaf are mad by putting a small piece of precious metal under a paper and pounding it thin. It ends up this size.

He uses brushes made out of woman’s hair.

This block of wood has tightly packed hair running through the entire thing. He ‘sharpens’ it like a pencil as it wears down.

More on this another day. I just lost the rest of this post.

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on November 30, 2010 in Japan, Uncategorized


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The Girl Next Door Grows Up
Blog started this Feel Good Friday meme. Pick one of her prompts and write about it on your blog!


It’s official. I validated my wordcount and I completed Nanowrimo for the 5th time.

It’s a great impetus to get a first draft done. For me, I get to discover a story inside me. Now I will cut about 3/4 of it and get to work revising it or one of my other drafts, AFTER Christmas.


We had two of our neighbors over for Thanksgiving dinner. It was lovely as usual.


When I was 15 my mother had my youngest brother and was coming home from the hospital on Thanksgiving. I said I would cook Thanksgiving dinner for 11 of us. How hard could it be? I knew how to cook.


Thank goodness my father helped me. And I was never unrealistic about hosting a dinner party again. I do what I can to keep things simple.


When my grandchildren come to visit at Christmas, I want as much done ahead of time as possible so I can put all my energy into enjoying them.

So when I cooked this turkey, I stuffed it and cooked some additional stuffing in a pan. I blended the two batches of stuffing together and froze half of it. At Christmas I will roast an unstuffed bird which is so much easier. I also made 4 cups of gravy and will freeze half of that for Christmas too. And I made 4 pie crusts and froze 2 of them.


I stayed in a cotton yukata, (robe) yesterday on black Friday, all day. It was great. I guess on Sunday I will venture into traffic. I hope it will be less by than.


Have your best holidays ever.


<a href=””><img class=”aligncenter size-full wp-image-1650″ title=”MyLogo2010copy” src=”; alt=”” width=”450″ height=”450″ /></a>

<a title=”The Girl Nest Door Grows Up” href=”; target=”_self”>
The Girl Next Door Grows Up</a> Blog started this Feel Good Friday meme. Pick one of her <a title=”Prompts for Feel Good Friday” href=”; target=”_self”>prompts</a> and write about it on your blog!



Posted by on November 27, 2010 in Abundance, Uncategorized, writing


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Travel Japan – Nishiki Market


By np & djjewell

One of my favorite places to visit in Kyoto is Nishiki Food Market.

It’s an open air market that covers a few blocks and is full of interesting things.

by np & djjewell

Roasted chestnuts.

by EverJean


by EverJean

All manner of fish.

by Jaybergesen


by EverJean

Japanese knives are sold here, from a shop that comes highly recommended.

My favorite thing to buy there is sesame tofu. Yes, it’s made from sesame instead of soybeans. They sell it fresh and pack it with a little cooler insert to keep it cold. They also sell it dried, so you can make it at home. I bought some. Now to figure out the directions.

Oh and socks. I bought some 100% silk socks. They keep your feet warm in winter and cool in summer. I did a lot of walking and they are extremely comfortable. They make my feet feel very happy and princess like.

by yomi955

These grapes are so yummy and huge.

On the left are some little balls you add to soup and on the right wasabi covered something. I’m waiting until I have company at Christmas to try these.

My neighbor asked me to bring him back some yuzu kosho. It’s a spice, I tasted some that was whole. It looked like a pale green caper and it was very flavorful. There is some in the green tube and in the foil to the right is some that is ‘hot’. At the top left are some colored sesame seeds. I want to try them on some home made bread. And to the top right in the foil is a seasoning for chicken.

My Christmas meals will be interesting.

by dany13

At the very end of the street is a Shinto temple. It has fresh water from a spring and is a good place to refill your water bottle.

Have your best Thanksgiving ever.

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on November 24, 2010 in Japan, Uncategorized


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BOOK REVIEW – The Perfect Gift For Anyone Over 14.

Beth and Jim Hood’s new book Test Drive Your Future is the perfect gift for anyone – including you.
Whether you are challenged to figure out your career or are a person who knew from an early age what you wanted to be – this book will help you be more efficient in your search.
If you are a college bound person, a housewife returning to the workforce or a depressed middle aged person living at home with your parents – this book will help you.
The Hoods have the subject well covered in clear manageable steps that translate readily to any life situation.
They help you experience greater clarity, that I think is basic to getting more of what you want and need.
Three of my favorite parts of the book are
1. Finding out who makes up my navigation team (supportive people), so I can focus more on them.
2. The end notes in the book are fascinating to me.
3. Matt’s text under keeping refueled, is an important suggestion I haven’t often seen.

It all adds up to excellence, in my book.

Disclaimer – My policy is to only review books that I like. I received a copy of this book as a gift from the authors for reading through an earlier draft.

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on November 22, 2010 in Book Review, How to


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Taking Time For Myself.

Passion Flower (aka Clock Flower) by Hamed Saber


One of the challenges of getting older is the opportunity to get stronger in all kinds of ways.


Many people think because you are retired, you have lots of time to spare. Hey folks, I get 24 hours a day, same as you.


I’ve been the kind of person who makes lists of more things than are possible to do in a given amount of time.


Lately, a great joy in my life has been to chose the one most important thing to accomplish each day, do that and then decide my next step.


Being more relaxed makes those people who think you have endless time, think it even more so.


Luckily, with all this practice I am getting good at explaining that I plan my day in specific ways and focus and I am not open to interruptions that are not of my choosing.





It feels empowering. I have never been a person with too much time on my hands and I like it this way.

I just completed Nanowrimo – wrote 50,000 words of a novel, got a late start and still finished 10 days early. I love it. It is such a great excuse to spend all my time writing. I clear my schedule of anything expendable.


I love taking time for myself to love and be loved. That is where I want my time used and totally of my choosing.


What do you want your time for?

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on November 20, 2010 in Abundance, Uncategorized


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The Girl Next Door Grows Up
Blog started this Feel Good Friday meme. Pick one of her prompts and write about it on your blog!


I have written 46,000 words for Nanowrimo and plan to finish today.

In two hours, I’m off to see Harry Potter.

Life doesn’t get any better does it?

I like my latest story, I am content with it.

It was fun yesterday at my writer’s group. Some people write so well, it is spellbinding to hear their work.
And they think I am high tech because I blog. Muhahaha. I get by with a lotta help from my friends.

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on November 19, 2010 in Abundance, writing


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Travel Japan – Day 1 Lunch at Izusen

This flower greeted me on my way into Izusen. It is a vegetarian restaurant at Daitokuji Temple. They serve the food in red lacquer bowls called teppatsu. The elaborate style of eating is called teppatsu-ryori.

We ate inside sitting Japanese style and this was our window view.

The first serving was this:

At 6 o’clock in the picture is I believe fried tofu on a little stick and at 5 o’clock is a chestnut. At 7 o’clock looks like a mushroom wrapped, but I could be mistaken. I forget what was under the porcelain lid to the left.

Tofu in some shoyu sauce and garnish.

The colored leaf in the center is gluten and that may be fried gluten at 12 o’clock. There is seaweed at 6 o’clock and some yummy vegetable between that and the snow pea, the top layer skimmed off tofu at 9 o’clock. I liked everything I was served at this meal. I am not vegetarian, but this was an excellent meal in terms of taste and the variety of textures and flavors the Japanese are famous for .

Two of my favs, I think it was rice with mushrooms on the left  and vegetable tempura on the right.

Pickles, a part of most Japanese meals. They are varied in crunchiness and taste.

Soup, it likely includes tofu.


Tea was served with the meal and  plum wine.

At the end they all stack.

The bathroom sink has bamboo in the bottom.

There is outdoor garden seating too.

I would eat there every day. The menu changes with the availability of seasonal items. It cost 3150 yen or about $37.75

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on November 17, 2010 in Abundance, Japan


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