I’m Back and Now on the Other Side of the World!


I’m popping in to say hello, I’m still alive, and I’m mostly settled into my new home in Japan! Check out my previous post to see why I made the move in case you missed it.

To say the past couple of months have been a whirlwind would be an understatement. It feels more like 5 years has passed instead of 2 months, but in a good way! It has basically been nonstop since I packed up and drove away from my home in Tucson in late July… which has been a blessing in disguise because it’s kept me from thinking way too much about being separated from DD this whole time. But he’ll be here in 2 weeks to finally be with me forever, so huzzah!

There’s a lot to catch up on, but I’ll break it down into 3 brief (ish) parts…


Nanto City in Toyama Prefecture is my new home and it’s more gorgeous than I imagined. I am surrounded by mountains and farms and GREEEEEN! Oh, how I missed GREEN! And rain and humidity, believe it or not.

I’m meeting new people every week and they’re all so nice – from the locals to the local foreigners. Everyone has gone above and beyond in helping me settle in and answer all of my silly questions… not to mention satisfying the 10-year karaoke itch I’ve been having.

I think Nanto and I will get along.

The view from my apartment
The main street in Fukumitsu, my part of Nanto City
The Oyabe River which cuts through Fukumitsu


I team-teach English at 4 different elementary schools and am at school every day of the week. I forgot how exhausting it is teaching very excited kids and trying to communicate in a language I barely understand, but it’s still rewarding. I’m not as shy around kids as I used to be, so I talk to them more than I used to when I did JET the first time. I even get random hugs every now and then outside of class and I’ve been asked to autograph English textbooks by some of my 3rd graders, haha! There’s always smiles greeting me every morning and shouts of, “Rachel-sensei is here!”

So yeah, I haven’t missed my last job yet… ๐Ÿ˜‰

Food and game stalls in front of the temple in Johana in Nanto City during the Mugiya Festival


…or shall I say the lack thereof? I was just reunited with my machines and desktop computer 2 weeks ago and I haven’t had time to bust out my machine for some serious sewing yet. I have managed to do a couple of hand-embroideries as presents so I’ll post about those once I get a spare minute.

I have a few projects waiting to be blogged from the summer, most of which I haven’t taken pictures of yet (and without my trusty photographer, DD, it’s kinda hard…). Those might not make it to the blog until next year when we’re back to looking forward to warmer weather. I did notice I have a mostly-finished draft of a very summer-y outfit which I’ll post soon just to get it out there. I guess my southern hemisphere friends can find it more inspiring now that fall’s here already. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I sold most of my clothes and gave away a good bit of my fabric stash since I knew I wouldn’t have the space in Japan. I did manage to bring 4 small boxes of fabric with me, so I’ll try to go through those before going on any big shopping sprees. Well, I guess I should mention I might not have any BIG shopping sprees anytime soon since DD and I will be living only off my teacher’s income for a while, so that means hunkering down and saving money.

A small crafting shop down the street from me… and yes, they have a fabric section!

I knew my sewing habits were going to change once I moved here and right now all I can think about is survival sewing over sewing just for the heck of it. I don’t have your typical Japanese body shape, so clothes fit me differently here (not to mention never being able to find women’s shoes in my size…). There is also a different dress code policy in Japan vs. super-casual Arizona. No visible shoulders, thighs, or chest. So I’ve recently just been living in my Deer and Doe Melilot shirts (OMG I haven’t even posted the second summery one I’ve made, argh!), Sewaholic Granville Shirts, and Cambie Skirts. Thank the Lord for these patterns otherwise I would have been a hot mess. Literally. This summer was insanely hot and humid. I don’t think I’ve sweat so much in my life… and I am originally from the swamp!

So yeah, that’s all I have for now. Gotta cut myself off otherwise I could write a novel about my experiences and honestly I don’t have the energy for that. Yet. ๐Ÿ™‚


10 thoughts on “I’m Back and Now on the Other Side of the World!

    1. So true! I finally pulled out my machine today and repaired a giant hole in my Oslo Cardigan and put more buttons in a shirt and dress (yay for higher necklines in Japan). It felt good to do something sewing related again!


    1. Thank you! It’s definitely been a good time although I’m still struggling with some things- but those will get easier once I learn more Japanese! ๐Ÿ™‚


  1. Very cool!! Are you really teaching 7 days a week?! I teach 6 days a week in the summer and I have to treat every Sunday like a long, late, barely awake lunch, I don’t know how I’d survive on 7!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha oops, I should have said every work day of the week! Just 5 days and I can barely survive that – I don’t know how you can do 6!! XD


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