Ume blossoms, the floral harbinger of spring of Japan, have brightened up
the pale wintry landscape.
March is the month when changes happen dramatically repeating cold and warm spells
as is Japanese saying 三寒四温 meaning "three cold days, four warm days."
This year, however, the changes have been occurring record early since the first snowfall in January.
Temperature topped 24C on February22.
Winter and spring have alternated.
Medical care workers finished the first jab of vaccine against COVID-19 mostly
but the vaccination project is largely delayed.
Plans for spring is up in the air in spite of an air of expectation.
But spring will come for sure.
March 3 is time-honored Doll's Festival dedicated to girls.
One day in mid-February, I rolled up my sleeves and got busy to display
a set of hina dolls on the seven-tired stand.
The time-consuming, tough work was paid off by the joyful reaction of
three-year-old M living nearby.
Empress Doll and the view from the top
Dolls' Festival is a celebration for healthy growth and wellbeing of girls.
Dolls are believed to protect people from diseases and misfortunes.
I'm thankful to be able to watch over how my grandchildren (not only girls)
growing individually through their various different challenges - ballet,
swimming, abacus, music, shogi, flower arrangement, soccer, academic skills, etc.
Rolled sushi, gyoza, hamburger steak, bento for picnic, strawberry cake - all of my Grands like cooking.F and Y finished the primary course of "Ikebana", the art of traditional flower arrangement.
Dolls' Festival is a tasteful celebration, too.
"Chirashi zushi/sushi" (bottom in the mosaic) is made with lotus roots,
boiled shrimps, thinly shredded eggs, salmon roes or smoked salmons, etc., as you like,
on the vinegared rice.
As to other delicacies, look at this past post Cheers to Hina dolls and Womanhood!
Last week, two of my friends and I got together, not virtual but in person at my home.
Air was chilly but the sun was quite kind while we were outside.
We had tasteful conversation wearing one or two masks....,
wishing of the talk over lunch or refreshment someday as we used to do.
Linked to Mosaic Monday