Archive for the ‘WWOOF’ Category

Yan Can Cook

i never thought that i could make pizza n bread from the dough. it just seemed so complicated n troublesome, a process that takes lots of time, many different ingredients, a very big oven, and hours of clean-up work. but Sachiko-san of Heart N Tree (my Hokkaido WWOOF host) showed me that cooking is easy, and everyone can cook, including me :mrgreen:

oh, btw, in case you wonder, Yan is my Chinese name 🙂

while its fun making dough for bread, it could be quite tiring, especially for the hard dough that has no egg nor butter. i love it though, for i just treated it as some good workout for my arms haha 😀

Heart N Tree makes its own pasta too.  depends on season, different pasta is made. for examples, potato, pumpkin, spinach…

before working in Heart N Tree, i wouldn’t image myself making pizza, n from the dough too 🙂

Heart N Tree basil pizza! I made this 8)

Sachiko-san loves cooking, and always wants to show people how easy cooking could be.

so, despite of her busy work in Heart N Tree, Sachiko-san holds a few cooking classes, which her students (mostly young mothers) could have some fun cooking while chit-chatting n making friends with one another.


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Japan WWOOF Host – Heart N Tree

when i think of Heart N Tree, the love in a family and the passion of cooking are the two things that come to my mind right away.

this is Heart N Tree, a restaurant, with very beautiful scenery on days with a clear sky, in the countryside called tsurui (鶴居).

origin of the name Heart N Tree: Hittori (服部) is the last name of the Heart N Tree family. if you split the name into parts – hi tori, and imagine urself a japanese pronouncing the words , then u will find urself saying “heart tree”.   and what a wonderful coincidence it is, for it matches well with the image of the restuarant 🙂

Heart N Tree is known for its bread

some of the pets of the Hittoris

Heart N Tree has been a WWOOF host since Jan 98.  Over these ten years, the family has met WWOOFers of all kinds, from different countries, with different background and personalities.  hence, unlike most japs, the Hittoris are very much used to work and live with foreigners.

from the left: Sachiko-san (Mrs Hittori), Masato-san (Mr Hittori) , me, Arianna (WWOOFer from New Zealand) and Alastair (WWOOfer from UK)

n here is the Hittoris! Mr and Mrs Hittori + Momo + Takumi (little brother, Daichi is missing for he was the one taking this pic)

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okay okay! i have got the message – the more u participate, the more fun u can get!

my life is trying to let me understand this i bet, for it keeps popping up all these goodies to show me the message just said.

so after the belly button festival (へそ祭り)in furano (富良野), i was in tsurui’s obon festival (鶴居お盆祭り). its not just a plain traditional obon festival, but a costume party as well 😀

this is the heart n tree team (two members r missing in this pix)! while the heart n tree family is always busy n working long hours, they never forget about fun. making bread is fun. teaching cooking class is fun. n having a booth selling pizza n chicken in the festival, of course, should be fun too!

i m just one lucky girl who always get hooked up with all these fun loving ppl! 😀

the two sexy “ladies” n the purple head monkey

the kiss crazy froggie n rabbit

N the best custome award goes to… (drum roll…) the anpan man team! (n the monkey just ran up n took pix with them haha :mrgreen: )

fyi, the anpan man (red bean bun man), is a very popular cartoon in japan.

“i thought the belly button festival was over? no? ” the monkey puzzled… 🙄

we sold everything that nite!

then firework! not a very big firework show but becuz its so close (n i went up to the front too), the effect was great! w burnt paper of the firework dropping on ur face (umm… not sure if u want that though hehe :mrgreen: )

can u believe it? we won the fourth place! cash price too! besides all the fun!, i also got 5000 yen for doing nothing but just having fun! wahahaha 😛 (masato san n sachiko san were very nice that they just let the monkey wondering around, taking pix instead of always staying in the booth selling pizza n curry to customers 😉 )

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yes! thats me on NHK!

i m going to be famous in japan! wahahaha 😛 8) :mrgreen:


this is 社長 (the boss) of hopeland

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last week, there was a festival & firework show (祭り & 花火大会) in hinode park (日の出公園) . n omg, its so good! clear sky,  perfect weather, excellent location,  beer n yakitori (chicken skewers). もう最高でしょう! there is nothing more one can ask for!


before the firework show, there was some kinda parade. at first it was quite boring for all they showed were little lit up carts by local kindergartens n elementary schools. but things got more n more serious as the show went on, with smoking dragon n fighting shoguns 8)

this is mr tada, a kind n courteous man. i call him the 斯文農夫 haha 😀

thx to mr tada for getting this spot with excellent view of the firework show on the flower field (tada went to this firework show last year as well, so he knew where in the park had the best view 😀 ) n we brought those outdoor folding chairs with us too. just so good! 8)

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i wwoofed in furano (富良野) for 2 weeks. as many of u know, furano is well-known for levander. one can see levander everywhere,  can smell levander everywhere, can taste levander everywhere (like levander ice-cream, levander cake). at first when i visited a flower field, i was so impressed, just kept taking pix n thrilled by the art of gardening n the colorful nature. but then after visiting several flower fields, i started finding them all looking similar. n my pix too, similar flowers, similar colors… if i havent taken a pic of the wooden sign w the name of the flower field, i probably wont be able to tell where i took the pix when i look back at them now (maybe thats why every flower field puts so many wooden name signs around haha 😀 )

but nevertheless, the flower fields in furano n biei (美瑛) r very beautiful. i m impressed, in fact, inspired. 


so with the wooden sign, i know this is tomita farm 😛

this field was just so beautiful that i could take postcard-quality pix like this without much effort


what a small world, i bumped into filex (no typo here, i m spelling it right haha :D) when i was in kanno farm (the board gives me the hint haha 😀 ) n exactly a week later, we bumped into each other again in otaru (小樽) !

i asked the mom of this lil girl to take a pic for me. then this girl asked her mom if she could take a pic with me. sure 😉

finally something other than flower! a straw roll man in shikisai (四季彩の丘)

biked a whole day around biei (美瑛), a long steep slope in the pic, this is a tough one, taken this pic when i was in a break

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so i left tada farm this morning after wwoofing there for 2 weeks. unlike hopeland which has almost everything (cabbage, onion, cucumber, tomato, lettuce, strawberry, milk, cheese, pork … ), tada farm specializes in one – carrot! its all about carrot! the farm doesnt just sell its carrots, but also make them into other products like carrot pickles, carrot juice, carrot vinegar, carrot hi-dense drink, carrot jam … n yes, they actually taste good, some of them taste very good in fact 😀

yet, nevertheless, after living in the world of carrot, eating n smelling carrots for 2 weeks, i m ready to move on to the next part of my wwoofing journey – 5-day backpacking in west hokkaido 😉




i have done some packaging work in the farm for its pickles n hi-dense drink, stamping the expiration date, putting on stickers, etc… n dont u like the packaging design? its so cute. i love it. n only later found out that it is actually designed by a shiseido packaging designer who is a friend of mr. tada (tada has so many friends! wherever we went out, we always bumped into someone he knew …)

happy that the harvesting season started a few days before i left the farm, at least now i have experienced a little of it n know what its like 🙂  ( i missed the harvesting season when i was in hopeland for i left too early)


first day of harvesting – only the first 2 hours need to be done manually. once a path is created in the field for the machine to move around smoothly, the machine will pick up all the carrots in the field while the workers will do the packaging.


big machine for washing carrots n seperating them by weight


n this is my work, cleaning up the pool of carrots n taking out all the grass, weeds n whatnot before the machine starts washing the carrots.  looks dirty? i love this job much though 😀


this is tada farm. nice place isnt it? n its just 30 mins bike ride away from tomida farm (富田農場) too!


n this is where i stayed when i was wwoofing in tada farm. so nice… a small pretty guesthouse, all by myself, with kitchen n bathroom. i love it 😀

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