Nameko Official Shop: Fall in Love with This Mushroom Character


It was last August when I met Nameko for the first time. I was wandering around Tokyo Character Street on First Avenue Tokyo Station looking for some special character goods and found an interesting character good store. The store’s name was ‘Nameko Official Shop’, and it had a variety of mushroom character goods.

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Nameko Official Shop on First Avenue Tokyo Station1

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Nameko Official Shop on First Avenue Tokyo Station 2

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The mushroom character is called, Nameko, the name of a very familiar ‘mushroom’ to Japanese people. The mushroom is used in some common Japanese cuisines (such as miso soup).

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common Nameko character

As a Korean who uses similar Asian mushrooms for cooking, I also felt familiar with the mushroom character and started to really like it from the first time I saw it in the store. But I had no idea that the character was from mobile games, ‘Mushroom Garden’ series till I talked about it to one of my Japanese friends.

Mushroom Garden Deluxe (Screen Shot)
Mushroom Garden Deluxe (Screen Shot)

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For details about the game, Mushroom Garden, visit this post -> Mushroom Garden (Game) : Let’s Grow Funny and Cute Mushroom, ‘Nameko!’

Most of the mushroom character goods in the store were inspired by various mushroom characters from  Mushroom Garden. Below are some pictures of the plush dolls where I put some pictures of corresponding game characters (only ones I recognized :)). You might notice that many of these mushroom characters were so modified from common Nameko mushroom character and do not look like a mushroom at all :p

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On last Valentine’s Day I visited the store again and could see some special Nameko goods for Valentine’s Day. Plush toys of heart-shaped Nameko and Nameko holding heart was so adorable!!

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I also took a commemorative picture with a giant Nameko at the store 🙂

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me & giant Nameko plush toy

 I definitely fell in love with Nameko!

Below is a picture of my souvenirs from the shop. I bought a cute Nameko plush doll for decoration and a Nameko plush key chain.

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I particularly like the Nameko plush doll for decoration. It is funny as it reminds me of real Nameko mushroom in Japanese soup.

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Nameko in Japanese soup

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Nameko mushroom in miso soup (image from http://www.dashiya.jp)

Thank you for reading my post! -Dr.Mouse-

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Nameko Figure Kit


Nameko Lunch Box

Nameko Mushroom Dancing Plush Doll

 

Mushroom Garden (Game) : Let’s Grow Funny and Cute Mushroom, ‘Nameko!’


A cute and silly looking mushroom character, Nameko is one of my favorite characters! (or the game character I like the most!)

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mushroom character, Nameko

The character was inspired by Pholiota Nameko, one of common mushrooms that Japanese eat (in miso soup, soba, and etc.).

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Pholiota Nameko

Nameko showed up for the first time in a Japanese mobile game, ‘Touch Detective.’

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game, ‘Touch Detective’ (image from http://namepara.com)

As the mushroom character has became widely popular in Japan, different games ‘Mushroom Garden‘(or Funghi Gardening Kit) series were released, and the games also became extremely popular (In 2011 one of the game series, “Seasons had been downloaded 1 million times from iTunes” and the Android version “had reached 200 thousand downloads within a week of its release.”(wikipedia)).

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Mushroom Garden game series on Google Play

Mushroom Garden series are simple and easy to play so that everybody can enjoy them. In the games you simply grow mushrooms on a log and harvest them. As your level increases, more special types of mushrooms grow on the log. You can use special items for growing mushrooms faster or having rare types of mushrooms easily.

When I read descriptions about the games for the first time, it sounded so simple that I thought I would be bored with the games, and I wondered why many people had gotten addicted to the games. I tried the game, and actually I have got addicted to it, too!

I decided to play ‘Mushroom Garden Deluxe’ as it seemed to have more variety of mushrooms than other versions of the games according to the versions’ descriptions.

Mushroom Garden Deluxe (Screen Shot)
Mushroom Garden Deluxe (Screen Shot)

Below are screen shots of the game on my smartphone and some short descriptions about them.

 

At the beginning of the game, you will see some normal nameko mushrooms on the log. Small ones are baby mushrooms and big ones are full-grown mushrooms can be harvested (by touching the screen).

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Baby and full-grown nameko mushrooms on the log

In ‘Funghi Library,’ you can see descriptions about mushrooms you harvest.

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As you play the game and get some special mushrooms,

Screenshot_2015-03-16-20-40-53Unknown types of mushrooms in the Funghi Library are revealed.

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Gamer gets game points by harvesting mushrooms and completing game requests. With that points you can buy special items to grow mushrooms faster or get special types of mushrooms more often.

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one of the game requests

As your level increases, you can also breed different types of mushrooms to make new types of mushrooms like pictures below.

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In the ‘Box Room,’ you can see mushrooms you harvest. You can decorate your mushroom collection with furniture you like.

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It has been one week since I started playing this game. I do not spend much time for playing the game like I did at the beginning of it now but still occasionally check my mushroom garden and see what happened there 🙂

If you are interested in the game, just search ‘Mushroom Garden’ on App Store or Google Play(free)! If you are smart phone or tablet PC user, here are links to the game for…

App Store

Google Play 

I hope you enjoy it, too 🙂

If you are interested in Nameko character goods, visit this post! ->Nameko Official Shop: Fall in Love with This Mushroom Character

Thank you for reading my post!  -Dr. Mouse-

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Nameko Figure Kit


Nameko Lunch Box

Nameko Mushroom Dancing Plush Doll

 

*Mini Post* Rilakkuma Spaghetti Noodles: Good for girls?


Sorry if the title of this post made you confused. These spaghetti noodles do not look like Rilakkuma (or are not made of Rilakkuma (?)). Just the package design is Rilakkuma-themed! 🙂
If you do not know who Rilakkuma is, visit this post! -> Rilakkuma Store in First Avenue Tokyo Station

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This is what I found in a local grocery store in Tokyo. It is called Rilakkuma Poporosupa 7 minutes (リラックマポポロスパ7分). I do not know what ‘Poporo’ means (I just assume that ‘supa’ means spaghetti.), but it is a cute name. The package clearly says that it takes only 7 minutes boiling time for cooking these noodles. This product is interesting to me because not only the package design is Rilakkuma-themed, but also the package contains 1 serving noodle bundles which makes it easier for people to cook spaghetti (I used to battle amount of spaghetti noodles whenever I cooked spaghetti in U.S.). The package says that this product is good for girls (when it comes to dieting) as the amount of 1 serving noodle bundle(80g) is less than those of other products in Japan(commonly 100g). Though I don’t think it works for me as I am a big eater; I will probably put 2 bundles of them in the boiling water instead of 1…Actually I ended up buying a different package of spaghetti noodles which has more amount of noodles in 1 serving noodle bundles. lol

Thank you for reading my post! -Dr.Mouse-

Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue in Universal Studios Japan


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Universal Studios Japan

Last month I went to Universal Studios Japan (USJ) in Osaka. It was pretty fun, but the theme park was SO SO SO crowded!(even though it was neither during the weekend nor the vacation season) which made me a little tired (for example, for enjoying an attraction, ‘Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey’, people had to wait 4 hours including 2 hours waiting time for “getting an express pass” on that day). If you want to visit USJ, make sure you purchase an express pass ‘before’ you get here! 

Unlike Universal Studios in other countries, USJ has its unique attractions such as Hello Kitty, Evangelion, and Attack on Titan.

The most interesting attractions to me, of course, were the Hello Kitty attractions as the character, Hello Kitty is one of the main kawaii characters of Japan.

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Hello Kitty, Elmo, and Snoopy greeting visitors (at the entrance of Universal Wonderland)

Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue is located in Universal wonderland of USJ and consists of Hello Kitty’s Ribbon Collection, Hello Kitty’s Cupcake Dream, Hello Kitty’s Cupcake Shop, Hello Kitty’s Corner Café, and Hello Kitty’s Ribbon Boutique.

Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue on the USJ’s map (http://www.usj.co.jp))

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Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue (image from http://onigiriface.com)

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Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue2

 

Below are more detail about those featured spots in Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue. Here I categorize them into attractions, restaurants, and shop.

By the way, I should warn you that everywhere in the photos below will be so pink! lol

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Even the entrance of the restroom is Hello Kitty-themed.

 

Attractions

Hello Kitty’s Ribbon Collection

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Hello Kitty’s Ribbon Collection (original image by http://onigiriface.com)

 

In the attraction, you can see Hello Kitty-themed fashion items (not for sale), take a ride down the High-Heel slide, and take a memorial picture with Hello Kitty.

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Image showing features of Hello Kitty’s Ribbon Collection (image from http://www.appsfactory.my)

Hello Kitty’s Cupcake Dream

This is an attraction that you can take a ride in big cupcake cups spinning to the music. When you turn the steering wheel in the center of the cup, the cup rotates faster. Experience time is about 90 seconds.

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spinning cupcake with the steering wheel (image from http://www.usj.co.jp)

Restaurants

Hello Kitty’s Cupcake Shop

Hello Kitty’s Cupcake Shop (image from http://www.usj.co.jp)

Here you can taste cute cupcakes inspired by the rides in Hello Kitty’s Cupcake Dream. Below is the picture of them. Look so yummy….

Cute cupcakes in Hello Kitty's Cupcake Shop (image from http://private-import-japan.blogspot.ru)
Cute cupcakes in Hello Kitty’s Cupcake Shop (image from http://private-import-japan.blogspot.ru)

Hello Kitty’s Corner Café

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You can taste some Hello Kitty-themed foods and other cute foods here. Below is the menu. The ‘Pink Macaroon Hot Chocolate’ looks so good in the picture!

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Menu of Hello Kitty’s Corner Cafe (image from http://onigiriface.com) usj-kitty014

Although they always sell Hello Kitty buns, they seem to change foods according to the season though. At least in the summer of 2013 they sold Hello Kitty’s Apple & Peach Frappe and sold Pink Macaroon Hot Chocolate in the winter of 2013 (I do not know about this year though :p).

Hello Kitty bun (image from http://vanillabe.blog.fc2.com)
Hello Kitty bun (image from http://vanillabe.blog.fc2.com)

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Hello Kitty’s Apple & Peach Frappe (image from http://www.usj.co.jp)

 

Shop

Hello Kitty’s Ribbon Boutique

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Lastly, Hello Kitty’s Ribbon Boutique has various Hello Kitty goods! Below are pictures of the store. For seeing full size click the images.

Come and visit Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue in USJ if you love Hello Kitty 🙂

Thank you for reading my post! ❤

-Dr.Mouse-

Girl’s Day in Japan! Hinamatsuri & Hina dolls


Google Japan's main page celebrating Hinamatsuri
Google Japan’s main page celebrating Hinamatsuri

Yesterday I cut my bangs again, and as always, my boyfriend teased me about my bangs saying my bangs looked like those of a ‘Japanese traditional girl child doll.’ And I told him that I was celebrating Hinamasturi, which is today. Do my bangs really look like those of the Japanese doll in picture below? 😛

What is Hinamatsuri?

According to Wikipedia, Hinamatsuri, also called Girls’s Day, is celebrated every March 3. [It is the day for celebrating girl children’s growth and wishing their happiness]. The Japanese celebrate the day by decorating platforms, covered with a red carpet, with a set of ornamental dolls called ‘hina dolls (hina ningyo in Japanese).’ Hina dolls consist of dolls representing the Emperor, Empress, attendants, and musicians in traditional dress of the Heian period in Japan.

Hina Dolls

Here, I want to share some pictures of Hina dolls I took from some places in Japan. Although Hinamatsuri is on March 3, I have been able to see hina dolls in many stores in Tokyo and other cities in Japan since New Year’s Day.

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Hina dolls in Kurofune hotel in Izu, Shizuoka

Below are pictures of Hina dolls I took in Takashimaya, a department store in Tokyo.

They are very traditional hina dolls. These great works were done by a hina doll maker, ‘Koide Shoju.’

Various hina doll displays…

The displays in the pictures right below are my favorite hina dolls in the exhibition. The Emperor and Empress couples looked so sweet 🙂

I could also see some individual girl child dolls in the exhibition. They were cute and so delicate like real girls.

So, those were traditional hina dolls.

From now one let’s see some more Kawaiinized (or cutified) ones!

Below are pictures taken in Livin, a department store in Tokyo.

Check these Hello Kitty hina dolls out! >_<

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Hello Kitty hina dolls

 

How about miniature hina dolls? below are photos I took in the best chopstick shop in Japan, Ginza Natsuno (the headquarter store & the branch in Shin-Marunouchi building). They are almost as small as the widths of chopsticks in the picture! For more information about the store, Ginza Natsuno, go to this post -> Cute Japanese Chopstick & Chopstick Rest Store, ‘Ginza Nastuno’

miniature hina dolls in Gina Natsuno's head quarter store.
miniature hina dolls in Gina Natsuno’s head quarter store,Tokyo
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Rabbit-themed miniature hina dolls in Ginza Natsuno (Shin-Marunouchi building, Tokyo)

 

It seems like hina dolls do not need to be so delicate though. Below is a picture of hina dolls in a common restaurant in Izu, Shizuoka. They seemed to be simply made of small paper boxes (it could be amazing if there were small candies inside of these tiny boxes!).

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hina dolls made of papers

According to pictures above, it looks like hina dolls can be made of any material such as fabrics and papers. Maybe next year I will try to make my own hina dolls!

Thank you for reading my post!❤

-Dr.Mouse-