On Saturday, May 5th we celebrated Japanese Children’s Day | Boy’s Day. Our family got together for a grand potluck to celebrate with, none other than, food.
When we pulled into the driveway of my parent’s home, we saw that my Dad raised my brother’s koi nobori on a traditional bamboo stick and the colorful carp were flying in the wind. Koi nobori are wind streamers in the shape of carp that are traditionally displayed above the rooftop homes in Japan to honor Boy’s Day or to celebrate young boys in the family (read more about Boy’s Day history and the significance of koi nobori in my 2010 Kodomo No Hi post) . It’s very similar to how families celebrate young girls on Hinamatsuri or Girl’s Day by displaying hina ningyo, or dolls, wishing for their children’s good health and growth. (Follow these links for my posts on Hinamatsuri: 2012, 2011, 2010.)
Photo Credit: Hideki Ueha
In addition to koi nobori, my Mom displayed my Dad’s gogatsu ningyo (traditional samurai warrior displayed on Boy’s Day). Because this was gifted to my Dad, likely by my great grandparents when he was born, his gogatsu ningyo dates back over 65 years. It looks quite similar to that of my brother’s gogatsu ningyo (above) but the difference is in the details. (My poor iPhoto skills below don’t do my Dad’s doll justice.)
As for the food, we had, as always, too much of a good thing. We had sushi, and my Dad’s chicken wings, soba salad, yakisoba, chicken tsukune (teriyaki seasoned meatballs), potato salad, Korean kalbi, kalua pork, striped sea bass, edamame, and ebi chili (spicy shrimp stir-fry). It was an international mix of really delicious food. I am so thankful for my family and the good eats they provide!
In addition to Children’s | Boy’s Day, we also celebrated my Dad’s birthday and an early Mother’s Day so I opted to make kalua pork (follow link for recipe) for my Dad, since it’s one of his favorites. Then I made a two layer Jello with fruit, since Jello is a favorite of my nephew and Bebe E. To my brother’s EXTREME disappointment accompanied with groans and a few whines, I did not make Jello jigglers – to which he says, “BOO!!! Double BOO!!!” (I can’t help but to laugh and tell him to make these himself since he claims it is SO easy to make.)
Photo Credit: Hideki Ueha
After lunch, Aya-chan offered to take my nephew and Bebe E out for a walk. I love the photo above that my bro-in-law took of the two of them walking hand-in-hand. It gives me warm-fuzzies. (Never mind the times they spend fighting over toys or refusing to share with one another!)
For dessert we enjoyed a delicious cake from Angel Maid Bakery, a favorite among Westside Los Angelenos. The cake is marble sponge cake, vanilla pudding, fresh strawberry slices and real whip cream. It was oh-so-delicious!!! Thanks to my brother for selecting the important details about the cake. Angel Maid – you’re the best!
Happy Mother’s Day! I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!