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  • Writer's pictureJasmine Norwood-Dioulo

A day in Odawara: Rich in history, oozing with gorgeous views

In hopes of #FlatteningTheCurve as it pertains to COVID-19, our fam has canceled trips to beautiful places, and rescheduled visits back to the states to take care of business, and celebrate and honor some of our closest friends' major life events.

As I write this, I'm sitting in our bonus room in the basement of our Tokyo home. (Konnichi wa!)

Savvy Girl is upstairs with her sitter, building LEGO masterpieces and smearing play dough into my dining room table. haha

Schools are still closed here, toilet paper, paper towels, sanitary items are still being rationed, and from what I hear, even rush-hour trains hardly have anyone on them, because many companies are allowing their employees to work from home.

But that being said, there's not really a panicked energy here. It's like everyone is informed, and preparing, but not freaking out. And on sunny days there are still kids running up and down the sidewalks and skipping through grass fields at the park.

Uncertainty is never easy. But two things our nanny has been saying for months are 1. Panicking makes our immune systems weaker and thus one of the best things you can do to protect yourself and your family is minimize stress and panic. 2. The warmth from the sun is healing so on sunny days, get outside for a little, even if it's just on your terrace, in your driveway, or a walk to your mailbox.

Obvs, this is not medical advice, and everyone's beliefs are different. But these nuggets of wisdom have been good for my soul and have really helped me set the tone for our household.

As bummed as I am about postponing some of our travel, one thing that's been keeping my spirits high (other than online shopping haha) is looking back at some of the incredible things our little fam has already experienced in the short three months we've called Tokyo home.

Back in January, we hopped in Hub's #dadvan and took a beautiful drive to Odawara, Japan.

Odawara is rich with history, oozing with spectacular views, and is only about an hour and a half drive (with tolls) from Tokyo, so it makes for the perfect day trip!

I hope these pics bring a little light into your world today!

We started at the beautiful, tranquil, Hotoku Ninomiya Shinto Shrine.

Then we stopped in the Odawara Literature Museum, which was filled with artifacts, paintings, and ancient tools. Julian was in heaven! My experience using the toilet is what stuck with me most.

Imagine holding a deep sumo squat, while praying you're not peeing all in your UGGS. ha That was me.

Next up, was the Odawara Castle!!! We were blown away!

We couldn't take photos inside but check out the views from the top!!! Absolutely everything this California Girl needed this cold winter day! (Also, please note: Sav and I twinning)

What a gift!

After exploring we drove about 10 mins to an authentic spot in town to have sashimi bowls and oh my goodnesssssss!

Being that Odawara is a seaside town, the fish was super fresh! And this restaurant was great because they offered a menu in English, with directions on how to best doctor-up and eat the seafood bowls.

Plus, the waitress brought out the cutest bowl and silverware for Sav.

And to top it all off, I'm pretty sure our bowls were the equivalent of $10 each!

Although Savannah loves sushi, we opted to order her fried fish, which she devoured!

Okay, and now most importantly, can we please talk about how ADORABLE Savvy Girl was, blowing on her fried fish with Daddy?!!! I mean, seriously!

I just CANNOT.

Odawara is supposed to be breathtaking in Spring! The Sakura (Cherry Blossoms) everywhere and a gentle breeze off the water. Sounds like heaven right?!

We were originally planning to head back to take it all in, but now that we're keeping things much closer to home because of COVID-19, we may have to catch the Sakura in Odawara next year.

In the meantime, I'll be here pinching myself every day that I get to explore this part of the world with these two.

Let me know if you have any Q's about day-tripping in Odawara, or any advice on things my little tribe should experience next time!

Love Always.



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