Friday, August 26, 2011

Japanese Otedama (Girl's Juggling Tradition)

 (posted; Japanese culture page)
Pinkish sweet memory for me (Otedama)    (I linked this post with pink Saturday←link )
We will have a little girl guest (3 years old) tomorrow whose mother plays keyboard. (I've posted about her before)←link  I thought I would buy the girl "Otedama" and let her show how to juggle with them. Haha, good idea to steal her attention while her Mom have to play music with my hubby.
Oh, what a sweet memory that I collected the seeds of "Coixseed or adlay, jyuzudama in Japanese" with my mother along the nearby riverbank and she made Otedama for me putting the seeds in them. They made nice soothing sound when we were playing juggling. I admire my mother having had sewing talent which I didn't take after, I wish I did.   Reminisce the lovely memory juggling.

(pictures from pc-sites except the last one)  Link with picture page is →here

Coixseed, I was surprised to know that this is a
grain-bearing tropical plant from this site ←link

As I had guested, the ones I bought today had small plastic balls inside and made no nostalgic sound when juggle. Also, I felt a little sad to read this site which describes Otedama as "A Fading Japanese Juggling Tradition"
I bought small ¥100 Otedama-set and checked inside


  1. Miyako san,
    Totemo mezurashi that I never forgot about so cute Otedama:-)
    You have a beautiful the photos and explain very well.
    Thank you for sharing us.
    Enjoy your weekend,

  2. What an interesting post Orchid.
    I have not heard of this before and love learning about your traditions.
    You will have a fun visit I'm sure.

  3. Hi Orchid, this is a very sweet memory, I hope your little guest enjoys the juggling. That plant is very interesting. I wish I could sew also, learned years ago but never put the knowledge to use! Now I regret it. We are getting ready for the big hurricane. I am very worried. xo,

  4. What a sweet memory to cherish of you and your mother! I have never heard of these little juggling balls, nor the seeds that are in them.

    Thanks for sharing a bit of your culture.
    xo xo xo

  5. It is sad that the balls are nolonger the same as you remember. I'm sure your little guest will be entertained with these juggling balls and will have a good time. Have a lovely weekend. xoxo

  6. what a lovely post and tradition! love the little juggling bags. i don't sew either so i would have to buy from the store as well.

  7. Dearest Orchid,

    We can never go back to our childhood memories; nor can we re-create that time... Sadly those nostalgic things got replaced by plastic Otedama. Not the same anymore!
    Love to you and enjoy the cute little 3-year old.


  8. Thank you for sharing your story and tradition. how very sweet of you to think of this to do with the little girl. I'm sure she enjoyed very much.

  9. Loved visiting you blog and seeing all the neat things you shared.

  10. how interesting..such a wonderful post!! I had not heard of these juggling balls..what a lovely memory you have of them and how sweet to share this with your little visitor!!It is too bad that the balls you found do not have the same sound, but ,just by sharing your time and playing with these balls ,you will have given your little guest a lovely memory!!

  11. What a beautiful post. I have not heard of these little juggling balls before.
    Thanks for sharing a bit of your tradition. Enjoyed the visit!

    Have a wonderful weekend!
    Greetings from Germany,

  12. Dear Orchid, thank you for sharing your childhood memory with us. How thoughtful of you to entertain the little girl during her mother's lesson. You are kindhearted and lift our spirits with your goodness.

  13. Hi Orchid. I agree with kneesandpaws, you do lift our spirits my friend. Lovely memory of you and your mum. So thoughtful of you to think of that little girl. Bet she lived the juggling balls. My little grandson us 3, and it's such a lovely age! Hugs to you.

  14. Orchid, you always have such interesting post. Thank you for teaching all of us some of your culture, I find it so interesting. My husband was in Japan during war and brought me china and silver, we were not married yet. He enjoyed his stay in Japan. Hugs...Lu

  15. Ah otedama!! It's been forever since I played with them!! I could juggle only two. I could not do three or more. It's really hard for me. Color and design of your otedama are so lovely. I feel sad, too, to see it's a "fading" traditon...

  16. I've never heard of this tradition. How did the little one do with it - ready for the next Japanese Idol show?

  17. Oh Orchid, what a tender memory of your beloved mother. I wish I had the time to learn to sew myself.

    I have never heard of this juggling and I just love that they are filled with seeds. So earthy! Have a wonderful week, my sweet friend.

  18. What a wonderful idea! I do hope the little girl enjoys it! Juggling can be quite difficult but learning the techniques can be fun and will take hours :)

    Have a great day!