A Day in Ueno Zoo & Children’s Library

It was a sunny Saturday yesterday and we went to the Zoo & the International Museum of Children’s Literature in the Ueno Park area.At the Zoo, Lisa and her friend Hayato enjoyed a monorail ride as well as watching elephants and monkeys.

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Ueno Park, full of lotus leaves

We had lunch at Park Side Cafe, then walked to The International Library of Children’s Literature. The reading room on the first floor had a section of transportation-related books, where both of the kids spent some time opening several books one after another.

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The International Library of Children’s Literature

After saying goodbye to Hayato and his parents, Lisa went on playing at a playground across the zoo. Then we walked by the Shinobazuno-ike pond and head home. She fell asleep on the way back – it was a fun day!

#上野公園 #紫陽花

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WordPress Meetup Tokyo: November 2015

Last night, I co-organized the 24th WordPress Meetup Tokyo. This meetup group for English speakers hosts smaller and more intimate get-togethers compared to WordBench Tokyo, which is in Japanese.

Toru did a presentation on the upcoming WordPress version 4.4 with an emphasis on the responsive image feature, based on his talk at WordCamp Tokyo last month. I showed a couple quick demos on how WordPress post embed works and the new Twenty Sixteen theme.

WordPress 4.4 embed test post

A screenshot from my test site, displaying a WordPress post embed on the Twenty Sixteen theme.

Next speaker was Sarah Cada from the Philippines. I met her when I was at WordCamp Philippines 2012 and kept in touch through our mutual friend (now a coworker) Andrew. Sarah came in as a special guest to this meetup while she’s visiting Tokyo as a part of her first trip to Japan. She talked about her involvement in the Philippine Web Designers Organization, the state of local web communities, and painfully slow internet connection there 😛

Jeff Crawford shared his experience building a business site using a theme from Thrive Themes. Jeff had shown me his site Connect-Local with another choice of a theme at a previous meetup, but this time he said he’s really happy with the ease of customization.

He also mentioned other WYSIWYG customizable themes he had tried: OptimizePress and Beaver Builder.

Junko from Kagawa joined us, and Ichi from Meetup.com Japan was also there

At WordPress Meetup Tokyo with Sarah, Mayuko, Junko. なかなかない組み合わせ!

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The next meetup is not yet scheduled, but be sure to join the meetup group if you’re interested in getting a notification about it.

Photos: Automattic Table at PHP Conference Japan 2015

Last Saturday, I staffed the Automattic sponsor table with two of my coworkers at PHP Conference Japan. Thanks to the great team of organizers, this conference in Tokyo has been growing in size and popularity year after year.

Since I was around the sponsor area all day, I only saw that part of the event. I still got to listen to a few sessions that took place in the same hall, including the keynote by Rasmus Lerdorf.

If you missed our PHPCON table, I hope to see you at WordCamp Tokyo 2015 (October 31 – November 1)!

Tokyo Coffee Festival 2015

Tokyo Coffee Festival.

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This morning, we went to the Tokyo Coffee Festival 2015 at United Nations University.

Out of 10 coffee from different roasters/coffee shops I tried, I really liked:

(I tend to like balanced flavor with minimum acidity)

There were many roasters/shops from outside of Tokyo, and I enjoyed getting a taste of their unique coffee.

Tokyo Parks

During this Silver Week holidays, the weather in Tokyo was perfect for enjoying some time outside. We went to different parks for picnics and walks and got to see my daughter get better at walking day by day.

Niko Niko Park.

Niko Niko Park

Niko Niko Park, Kita-Aoyama.

I took this photo from a window of the building next door, where I went for Tokyo Art Book Fair.

Shinjuku Gyoen.

Shinjuku Gyoen

Shinjuku Gyoen lawn.

This lawn area close to Sendagaya Gate is not as crowded as the ones near the main gate.

Koishikawa Botanical Gardens

Red Spider Lilies

Red Spider Lilies at Koishikawa Botanical Gardens

Red spider lilies were everywhere at Koishikawa Botanical Gardens ― “the birthplace of Japanese botanical research”. Even on a nice fall day, it wasn’t hard at all to find a great picnic spot under a big tree here.

Kitanomaru Park.

It was my first time at this park near the Tokyo Imperial Palace. It had a relaxed neighborhood-park feel and isn’t as large as others we visited this weekend. Looking forward to taking a walk there again.


Not pictured: Inokashira Park in Kichijoji. We also went to this park in the town we used to live. If you are with babies learning to walk or prefer softer lawn to benches, visit the west part of the park past Inokashira Koen Station on Keio Line.

More Park Info

WordCamp Tokyo 2014 Design Team’s Showcase Site on GitHub

WordCamp Tokyo 2014 had a very creative and local-friendly website, custom Wapuu logo, and various swags and branding materials — thanks to the awesome design team.

Today, they launched a GitHub Pages site showcasing their creations all in one location.

WordCamp Tokyo 2014 GitHub Repositry List

Wordcam Tokyo 2014 Design Team's Github Repos

In the past years, these kinds of design data used to just sit somewhere in a shared folder of the project management web service we used to organize the event. We then had to dig around and give the right permission to the right people, as members of the design team change from year to year.

They still need to add some resources and tweak it a little, but it’s a great step forward in making it easy to share their work!

Props to Yutaro, Yasushi, and Mayuko for making this happen.

And here are some photos of the event: