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about me

Hello! This is Kaho with Chuzai Living.  

I have been in Mumbai, India, the City of Dreams and home of Bollywood since August 2013.

I was born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. I also lived in Los Angeles, California and Singapore growing up with my family.

My husband is a Texan boy without a cowboy hat and boots and speaks Japanese fluently.

He and I have three children; two monkey-like girls and one rambunctious munchkin boy.

We’ve lived together in Kumamoto & Okinawa, Japan, Texas & Washington, D.C., U.S.A., Dakar, Senegal, and most recently in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Japanese is my mother tongue. I also speak English, French and a bit of Indonesian. I am currently learning Hindi. We’ll see how far I can go with it with my old brain…

Interior design, photography, fashion, traveling and my family are the essence for my happiness. Blogging is what keeps me sane and it allows me to be who I am while I fulfill a job as a mom and a trailing spouse overseas.

I hope to make this space your source of information of the city I have lived in and traveled and your place to hang out for leisure and inspiration.

If you have any questions, please contact me at chuzaiiving[at]gmail.com.
Thank you for visiting!

こんにちは!Chuzai Livingのかほです。

2013年8月より、インドのムンバイ在住です。

東京生まれの、主に東京育ちですが、父の仕事に伴い、幼少時代にカルフォルニアのロスアンゼルスに2年、高校時代にシンガポールで3年を過ごしています。

夫は、日本語もぺらぺら話しちゃうテキサス出身のアメリカ人です。夫との間に、猿のような女の子2人とやんちゃ坊主1人が居ます。

結婚後、日本の熊本と沖縄、アメリカはテキサスとワシントンDC、セネガルのダカール、そしてインド赴任になる前まで赴任していたインドネシアのジャカルタに住みました。

日本語(母国語)、英語、フランス語とインドネシア語も少し話します。現在はヒンディー語を習っていますが、どうなることやら。

インテリア、デザイン、写真、ファッション、旅行、家族が私の幸せの源となっています。ブログをすることによって、自分の好きな事に没頭し、忙しない子育て、大変な時もある駐在生活から逃避し、心に潤いを与えています。このブログが、読者の皆さんにとって、駐在先、旅行先の街の情報源となったり、生活のインスピレーションを得て楽しめる場所となってくれたら、と願っています。

質問がありましたら、お気軽にchuzaiiving[at]gmail.comまでご連絡下さい。

136 Comments leave one →
  1. Wendy permalink
    April 1, 2010 9:32 am

    Dear Kaho,
    It was great meeting you and your family last Saturday and seeing your photos from Hook! I enjoyed reading about your adventures and will show the kids your blog….we must also try the recipes (they like furikake also, but we just call it “seaweed sprinkles;” we’ll try the proper name).
    Wendy

    • April 2, 2010 4:20 pm

      Wendy, thank you for writing to me!! It was wonderful meeting you and your family, too! It’s so convenient to have furikake. I love it, too.

  2. Kyra permalink
    April 14, 2010 5:00 pm

    After seeing your comment to Kirsten on facebook today, I decided to snoop around a little. Two hours later, I think I have read almost every last entry and can’t wait for you to post more. I love all of your pictures. You and the girls are so beautiful! Now to figure out something for dinner, feed my girls and run to go pick up Ken from the Department. Yikes!

    • April 14, 2010 5:45 pm

      Kyra, thank you so much for visiting!! I’ve wanted to send you my blog URL, but I checked your friend’s blogs before and I started to feel shy about sending you mine. I am so glad you snooped around! ;P I am flattered by your compliments! Thanks and thanks!!

  3. Eri permalink
    April 17, 2010 8:05 am

    Hi Kahochan! Greetings from Fukuoka. Thank you for giving me your blog URL. I was just going to take a quick peek at it but ended up reading many of your entries like Kyra did. I really enjoyed your beautiful photos (that really look professionally taken) and excellent writings. I am looking forward to reading more in the future.

    • April 21, 2010 8:20 am

      Eri san!! Thank you so much for checking my blog and leaving me a message! So wonderful to hear from you. Arigato!!!

  4. Staci permalink
    April 17, 2010 9:29 am

    Kaho,
    Your blog is so beautiful. I love reading it. I can’t wait to follow your adventures! Keep writing!
    Hugs,
    Staci and the family

    • April 18, 2010 6:35 pm

      Thanks for the very sweet comment and also visiting my blog! Hugs to you and your family!

  5. Becky permalink
    April 20, 2010 8:28 pm

    Kaho-

    Thank you so much for sharing your blog with me – you are so talented! We’re very sad that you’re moving this summer, but most grateful to have met you while you’ve been in DC. We look forward to staying in touch through the internet, and I hope we can get together a few times before you move.

    Best
    Becky

  6. May 16, 2010 11:05 pm

    excelent blog, your pics is so beautiful
    i like ur blog

  7. June 3, 2010 1:31 am

    Wow – you lived in Singapore too! Did you attend an International school there? I was at Overseas Family School and Singapore American School while I lived there from ’92-’01

    • June 3, 2010 6:34 am

      I attended Singapore American School from ’92 and graduated in ’95, so we might have passed each other! That’s crazy!

  8. August 7, 2010 10:13 am

    Hi Koho!

    I had no idea you had a blog! This is awesome. Hope you’re doing well.

    Lisa

    • August 7, 2010 1:04 pm

      Thanks, Lisa! Your blog is great! Beautiful photos! I love food blogs. Kaho

  9. August 15, 2010 2:14 pm

    Stumbled upon your blog and liking your travel posts!
    Your new reader!

    Cheers,
    Elaine

    • August 15, 2010 7:31 pm

      Thank you for leaving me a comment! I will try to keep my readers entertained!

  10. Yono (Tjahjono) permalink
    August 21, 2010 3:46 am

    Dear Kahori San,

    Hi I am Yono from Cosmo Supermarket. Thank you for visiting us this morning.

    Wow, your blog is really interesting, and it has nice photos. I really enjoyed it.

    Please do come again with your husband and your daughter. If you need any information regarding our supermarket and Jakarta, please don’t hesitate to call me.

    Rgds,
    Yono (Tjahjono)

    • January 17, 2012 10:39 am

      Thanks, Yono san! I’m sorry for not being able to come by your store lately. My fault! I’ve been very lazy! I will try to come to your store sometime soon!

  11. Julie Brown permalink
    August 30, 2010 7:52 pm

    Kaho, I didn’t know you had a blog! The pics are beautiful and so are the kids of course. I liked your idea for your 11th anniversary to write the 11 top things was cool. I like y’s bangs too, she looks a lot like you with the bangs. Hope all is well in jakarta. Miss you guys.

    • August 30, 2010 7:59 pm

      Julie! Thanks!! Yep, I started my blog/journal this past March. I like her bangs, too!! I’m glad to hear that she looks a lot like me and I hope she will be happy to hear that! :P Miss you, too!!

  12. September 14, 2010 6:44 am

    Hi! Your photos are lovely! What an interesting life!

  13. November 9, 2010 7:16 am

    Hi Kaho,
    Love being subscribed to your blog. You have so many amazing ideas and pictures! Keep it up!
    Just a quick question: how do you get your gallery to put the pictures sideways. I.e. in the Wednesday Wardrobe post, you have the pictures in your gallery presented in different ways. How do you do it?! Please share :-)
    Look forward to your next blog,
    Sanne

    • November 9, 2010 4:17 pm

      HI, Sanne! Thanks for subscribing to my blog!! I had no idea that you did! I use two different kinds. One is called picnik.com. You can edit your photos and make collages online. The other is called picasa. I downloaded picasa and use it to make collage as well. Picasa collages are for example on the post “Kidzania”. I used picnik.com for “Wednesday Wardrobe” and “Halloween” posts. I hope this answers your question. I took a month-long online course called Blogging Your Way taught by two bloggers, Holly Becker and Leslie. I learned about photo organizing and editing through the class. It’s not hard to use picnik or picasa and a lot of fun, so try them! Picasa is free to download. You can use picnik for free, but limited usage. I pay to use more functions. xo Kaho

  14. November 11, 2010 6:14 pm

    Hey Kaho-san,

    Hajimemashite.

    I found you commenting on decor8blog (one of my favorite blogs of all time) and accidentally saw your latest post about trying out Indonesian snack.

    I’m an Indonesian who currently live in USA. ‘m craving for any connections with Indonesia, so naturally I have to check out your blog. How do you like living in Jakarta?

    Looking forward to more posts!

    • January 17, 2012 10:38 am

      Starlet! I love living in Jakarta as you already know. :) It is a fantastic city. It’s wonderful to know you!

  15. November 24, 2010 10:33 am

    Dear Kahori,

    I found your details while looking at various expat blogs, I hope you might be able to help me with my strange request!

    I am a Producer working on a television show called House Hunters International in New York which follows English speaking expats in their quest to purchase a house abroad. I wonder if you have bought your property and whether you might be interested in getting involved?! Please find a little blurb about the show below:

    House Hunters International is a half-hour program currently airing on the Home and Garden Television Network (HGTV). The program is a spin-off of the popular House Hunters and has spent the last several seasons exploring the idiosyncrasies of buying real estate in other countries. HHI is about a personal journey of discovery and the making of life-long dreams.

    The series is designed to de-mystify the international home-buying process by going behind the scenes of a house hunt where buyers and their real estate agents tour 3 homes. At its core, House Hunters International is a travel show concentrating on the idiosyncrasies of the locales and what makes them special and different. A great deal of effort will be made to capture rich visuals and to provide sequences where viewers will be exposed to local vistas, traditions, lifestyles and architecture.

    Please get in touch if you have any more questions about the show. I look forward to hearing from you!

    Best wishes and many thanks,

    Michelle

    Michelle James
    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER LEOPARD FILMS
    1-3 St Peter’s Street, London N1 8JD – +44 20 7704 3300
    michelle.james@leopardfilms.com
    http://www.leopardfilms.com

    • November 24, 2010 7:02 pm

      Michelle, I have seen your TV shows in the U.S.! I think it’s such a wonderful show and I love it. I actually LOVE all the Home and Garden Television Network (HGTV) and I am a huge fan of the channel!! We have not purchased a house, but I will send you an email message. Kaho

  16. December 4, 2010 9:15 pm

    Hi Kaho- Seriously, I am loving your blog. Can we do a skype date sometime soon? I’d love to get to know you better and ask you a few questions about your blog if you’re open to it!

    Cheers,
    Sarah

    • December 4, 2010 11:56 pm

      Hi, Sarah!! Thank you. Sure, I would love to do that!

  17. December 7, 2010 4:16 am

    Hi Kaho San.
    I’m an Indonesian blogger and a friend of your husband too. What an inspiring blog and lovely pictures you have! I’m thinking about taking more pictures and then renovate my photoblog :D

    • January 17, 2012 10:37 am

      Hi, Nonadita! Thanks for stopping by my bog! I hope you’ve been taking many pictures to post on your blog! :) Keep blogging!

  18. December 8, 2010 9:38 pm

    Lovely blog Kahori-san. You have 2 very beautiful girls. Thanks for your commenting on my blog. I love meeting people through it. Yoroshiku ne :D x

    • January 17, 2012 10:36 am

      Thanks, Diva! Thanks also for stopping by and leaving me a comment! Yoroshiku!!

  19. December 28, 2010 4:47 am

    Hi Kaho,
    Thank you for dropping by to my blog and leaving comments as well. If you don’t mind I would link your blog as ‘Blogs I Follow’. I would love to, if you do the same. Happy blogging…

    • January 17, 2012 10:35 am

      Hi, Nin! Thanks for linking my blog. I am sorry I didn’t respond to this! My list of blogs I follow is super old. I am quite lazy about updating my blog on different areas which I need to change. I am barely following a few blogs, so I apologize that I haven’t been able to reciprocate. Happy Blogging!

  20. January 23, 2011 12:28 am

    Hi! Just saw your blog! :) Love all your travel stories. And will be traveling to Vietnam for the 1st time soon and your entries will really help me in planning my trip. Keep blogging! :)

    • January 17, 2012 10:32 am

      Elawela, I hope your trip to Vietnam went well and my posts were able to help you in some ways. Thanks for stopping by!

  21. February 2, 2011 5:01 am

    i’m so excited to read that you spent 3 years in Singapore. That’s where I’m from and I’m really enjoying your wonderful blog.

    • February 2, 2011 7:41 pm

      Thanks! I loved the 3 years I spent in Singapore!

  22. February 16, 2011 8:00 pm

    I am so glad that bookjunkie brought your blog to me! I am looking at your amazing photos and I will have to spend another hour (or four) looking at everything here.
    I have 2 girls as well ages 15 and 18. I am tearing up looking at your pictures as it seems like they were that age just yesterday! I especially like the photo where the older one is trying to get the younger one to cooperate! So cute!
    I just subscribed and I am so excited to see what you show me next!
    PS. We just built a koi pond, so I have spent the last 6 weeks reading all about Japanese culture and the history of koi!

    • February 18, 2011 8:47 am

      Thank you so much for such a sweet comment! People say kids grow fast, but my kids are still small and on daily basis, it requires a lot of my care still, so it’s hard for me to imagine when they are teenager and very self sufficient! Thank you so much for subscribing! I find your blog very inspiring to be healthy!

  23. leksmono santoso permalink
    March 10, 2011 4:44 am

    Hi Mrs Kaho ,
    Thank so much for coming and visiting roemah Djawa and wrote a wonderfull article about what you got while you were on tour at Roemah Djawa… Recently by chance I was searching Roemah Djawa info on the internet and …. I just found a big surprised to know
    that Roemah Djawa exposed on your personal face book or website ,…. after Linda & I look all the photos exposed , we would like to ask you if you able to closed this photos publication … many things need to be considered and discussed before we allow anyone to published Roemah Djawa photos without permission and we never thing that our guests will personally creating a special site for the house for the public …. and I am sure that we never talked about your plan to expose full photos of our house on your personal Face book or website –. Beside that Roemah Djawa is a Private house , we also want to have our privacy .. without take any respect I would like to ask you to be able to close Roemah Djawa site with photos … Thank you so much for your mutual understanding for this matter . regards- leks Santoso

    • March 10, 2011 5:38 am

      Sure. I understand. I actually emailed you to let you know that I posted this article on my blog so that you could take a look at the photos. I, however, never heard back. I just removed the photos from the article per your request. I also sent you a message to your email account. I apologize that I did not ask you in person if I could post the photos on my blog when I was at the site. I usually ask for permission to take photos and post on my personal blog when I take photos. Many people do let me post on my blog as it is a free advertisement for them. Some prefer not to, which I totally understand. Thank you for leaving me a comment!

  24. March 13, 2011 7:06 am

    Dear Kaho-San,
    I am sorry to hear about the earthquake and tsunami disasters happened in Japan, your home-country. Do you have relatives of friends live in Miyagi Prefecture? It’s so sad to see all of the pictures and news. I really hope that people in Japan can survive this disaster. Our hearts and prays go to Japan.

    • March 13, 2011 7:50 am

      Thank you so much for the prayers. I think Japanese people need them so badly at this time. I do not have any relatives or friends in Miyagi. I am heartbroken to see the city almost completely destroyed.

    • March 14, 2011 3:42 am

      Thank you so much!! I appreciate your thoughtful message for the people in Japan!

  25. Mark permalink
    April 9, 2011 9:59 pm

    Kahori – really enjoyed reading through your blog, lovely stories. I have just moved to Indonesia myself. I have three girls and we loved the pictures from the safari! Anyway I wanted to ask you a quick question – we need a few peices of contemporary furniture but can not seem to find any shops selling Indonesian designed stuff. Any thoughts on where to look and what shops? Many thanks.

    • April 9, 2011 10:28 pm

      Thanks for visiting my blog! Welcome to Jakarta and I hope you are settling in well. Do you have any price range you’re looking at? When I think of contemporary, KOI Kemang comes to my mind. I have a gallery of collection of KOI furniture under Photography tab on my blog. You can also click here to go to the Photography tab. They have contemporary design I love. I know that some furniture sold at KOI is made in Jogjakarta, but as for design, I’m not sure. As for sofas, I have visited a place called Savana in Kemang. I tried to take photos, but they didn’t want me to, so I never featured them here. The prices are very high though. What kind of piece are you looking for? If you want to browse furniture, there is a street called “Kemang Timur”. It has workshops after workshops of furniture on this street and you can see furniture made from the street. I have a friend who recently went on a trip to somewhere (out of town) in Indonesia for furniture shopping and she said that the prices there are much cheaper than you can find here. It’s almost a warehouse of furniture and major furniture stores from the U.S. send buyers to this place. I can get the information from my friend if you are interested.

  26. April 12, 2011 8:19 am

    OMG! Your daughters gorgeous! I love your blog and I like you already :). I’ve never been to Japan but I’ve visited Singapore and my son was born in Texas- so maybe we have a little in common. I have a daughter (a.k.a monkey) too :). K

    • January 17, 2012 10:31 am

      Thanks, Kemi for the sweet comment! Sorry for taking so long to reply. Your so was born in Texas! Your daughter is also known as a monkey? Haha. We do have things in common!

  27. Yoko permalink
    June 18, 2011 8:13 am

    Dear Kaho,
    It was really nice seeing you again tonite!!
    I am very impressed by your blog, and happy to know that you are doing very well.
    I hope to see you again soon!!
    Yoko

    • June 18, 2011 10:27 am

      Yoko! Thanks for visiting my blog! It was wonderful seeing you again, too!! Thanks for your sweet comment. Hope to see you before too long!

  28. July 4, 2011 5:20 am

    Hi Kaho,

    I just moved to Jakarta from Australia and I love your blog. I especially like your shop reviews because I’m a designer too.

    Keep up the good work!
    Jenny
    http://www.formosadesign.com.au

  29. July 4, 2011 5:21 am

    Hi Kaho,

    I just moved to Jakarta from Australia and I love your blog. I especially like your shop reviews because I’m a designer too.

    Keep up the good work!
    Jenny

    • January 17, 2012 10:29 am

      Jenny, I hope life is treating you well in Jakarta! How cool is it that you’re a designer! I hope you can work as a designer here as well. :)

  30. July 11, 2011 8:50 pm

    I love the feel of your blog… so cozy! And you have such a beautiful journey! I always loved to travel. I’ve been to 3 countries so far and hoping we could add another one to the list before the year ends! We are planning on going to Japan for Christmas! =D

    I’m bookmarking your blog! =D

    http://www.journeyofawoman.wordpress.com

    • January 17, 2012 10:28 am

      Thanks, Viviene! Did you go to Japan for Christmas? I hope you had a nice holiday wherever you were!

  31. Fitri Satrio permalink
    October 6, 2011 10:02 pm

    dear kaho,

    i’m Indonesian..your blog is really inspiring..love your photos too..

    • October 8, 2011 10:37 am

      Aww, so sweet. Thanks!!

  32. October 13, 2011 10:32 am

    Hi Kaho…
    I ‘accidentally’ landed to your blog when searching for Chic Mart phone number… Love love love your blog and those beautiful photographs …been to KOI couple of times, I never though to meet one of the photographer here! Please let me know if you happen to visit Koi, I was hoping I could meet you in person sometimes.
    May I link your blog to mine?
    Thanks, and enjoy your Jakarta life :-)

    • January 17, 2012 10:43 am

      Hi, Ayu! Thanks for the sweet words! Love KOI. Such a cool place and the food is excellent! I would love it if you could link my blog to yours. Maybe one of these days we will run into each other!

  33. October 13, 2011 10:38 am

    Hi Kaho,
    I ‘accidentally’ landed to your blog when searching for Chic Mart phone number….Love love love your blog and those beautiful photographs…been to KOI couple of times, I never though I meet one of the photographers here! Please let me know if you happen to visit Koi, I was hoping I could meet you in person sometimes.
    May I link your blog to mine?
    Thanks, and enjoy your Jakarta life :-)

    • October 13, 2011 10:26 pm

      Hi, Ayu! Thanks for finding me & leaving me with such a nice comment! Maybe we can meet one day! Please feel fee to link my blog to yours. Thanks and have a great weekend!!

  34. Irene Tanjono permalink
    January 6, 2012 10:15 pm

    Hi Kaho, as with couple people here, i somehow landed in here and read a year of your blog :) I’ve been country hopping for half of my life due to my studies so i can relate to you but of course yours are much more intensive haha. very happy to find a jewel blog like yours coz tho i’m indonesian i don’t know a lot of those hidden cool places you post. Thank you for all the great photos and info

    • January 17, 2012 10:41 am

      Irene, welcome! Thanks for such sweet comment! I feel very flattered. I’ll try my best to keep posting! :)

  35. Munmun Mukerji permalink
    January 17, 2012 5:58 am

    Hi Kahori ..simply love your blog. I spent 2 wonderful years in Jakarta with my family in late 90s..i count it as one of my favourite cities in Asia.
    Well , I am revisiting Jakarta after nearly 11 years ( in early Feb) with a couple of my girlfriends.Its a totally girlie holiday…focus is on pampering ourselves. Can you recommend some spas ..I used to to frequent the Gaya Spa in Kebayoran Baru but I believe they have shut down . Mil and Mat used be my favourite haunt for cream bath ..i hope they are still there.
    For my clothes I used to frequent this boutique called Pinccas..it was in one of those tiny lanes in Kemang ..probably Jalan Perut? I am not sure..will you have any idea where this store is now .
    Thank you and have fun in JKT…

    • January 17, 2012 10:23 am

      Mil and Mat is still there. I did have cream bath there with my friend shortly after I moved here, but I haven’t been back. I would love to go back!

      I have not been able to write about this place since I don’t have photos, but I really like “Rumah Yoga”.
      http://www.rumahyoga.com/contact.html
      They have a hot stone massage and I love it.
      There are two locations, but I have only been to one in the south.
      Jl.Lamandau No.19
      Kebayoran Baru
      Jakarta Selatan
      Tel 021 739 3267
      Fax 021 739 3266

      I have not tried this place, but I hear great things about this one spa in Cipete: Puri Santi. I visited there once to check out the place and it looked really nice.

      I have no idea about Pinccas… Sorry!

      Following is not a boutique, but for shopping you might want to check them out.

      Chic Mart
      Tulisan
      dia.lo.gue
      Magnolia

      I hope you’ll have a wonderful girl’s trip in Jakarta!!

  36. Munmun Mukerji permalink
    January 17, 2012 8:30 pm

    Thanks a ton Kaho ..appreciate your prompt response.

    Also I would like to buy some ‘batik’ material..any recommendations ?

    • January 17, 2012 9:30 pm

      Do you plan on going to Jogjakarta or Solo? I hear that’s the place you want to buy batik. Batik in Jakarta is not as good and more expensive. My husband likes to go to Pasaraya for Batik shopping. It’s a whole floor full of Batik, but the prices are high.

  37. Chris permalink
    February 29, 2012 1:27 pm

    はじめまして、クリスです。 テキサスからきました。どぞよろしく。

    Hello Kaho, I am going to Chiba prefecture tomorrow and had a friend ask me to pick up a magazine called “Mart” Is this magazine typically found in book stores? I saw your blog about the magazine. I am a student of the Japanese language. thanks for the blog and all the best to you and your family. どもあrぢがとごあいます。

    • March 1, 2012 1:10 am

      クリスさん、コメントありがとうございます。わたしのおっともテキサスの人ですよ。わたしはおっととテキサスのオースティンに2年半いました。
      Yes. You can find “Mart” in any book stores. It’s funny you asked me about Mart this month because now the April issue is out and I’m on page 15 of the April 2012 issue as one of the overseas correspondences. Thanks for visiting my blog! どうもありがとうございます!

  38. Mrs Tulsi Shukla permalink
    March 22, 2012 9:59 pm

    Dear Kaho,

    I stumbled upon your blog while researching for my upcoming trip to Thailand and I am quite impressed :)

    I seek your advice on what to wear in Bangkok during my visit starting next Wednesday.
    Since it will be extremely hot, I plan to take shorts and tees and use a sarong to wrap myself while entering the temple premises.

    Will it be OK?

    Moreover, can I take the public transport like BRT / River Express wearing shorts and tees?

    Do I need a guide at Grand Palace ? I am planning to explore on my own, or is it better to take a conducted tour?

    Expecting your reply at the earliest as I am travelling next Wednesday.

    Thanks

    Mrs Tulsi Shukla

    • March 23, 2012 7:32 am

      Hi! Thanks for leaving me a comment. The only place I visited with my family in Bangkok that had a dress code was the palace. I did wear shorts and also saw people wearing shorts in town and on BRT. (Not sure about the River Express since I didn’t take it, but you should be able to find the information online. There are always forums about traveling questions.) If you have a sarong, you should be okay to enter the palace. Showing shoulders was not allowed either, so you should bring a scarf as well if you plan on wearing a tank top or something that reveals your shoulders. We didn’t have a guide at Grand Palace. With small kids, we wanted to move around on our own pace. You might find it educational and interesting to have a guide. I don’t know much about the conducted tour, but with the security issues in Bangkok in the recent past, it might be helpful and you might find it more comforting as you will be alone. I would check if there are areas where you shouldn’t get near. When I visited Bangkok last year, I was told that the areas near the parliament and zoo were not recommended to visit for tourists although I did not know about it till later. Good luck and safe travel!!

  39. March 27, 2012 12:11 pm

    Dear Kaho,
    I stumbled upon your name through your comment on Decor8 “BYW” e course student testimony. I can’t believe when I read the word “Indonesia” at the end of your testimony. I was looking for an e course to perfect my blogging skill and after reading your comment decided that I should contact you. I am an Indonesian, married and living in New York. I have been blogging for almost a year now. {you can check it out on the above} Most of all I really need your opinion about the e course. And my question is what exactly do they teach in that course. Do they teach how to build a website blog with all the buttons, SEO, etc. etc. Or mainly the design of the content ? I really need to improve the website. So far I thought myself on how to do it and I learned from youtube quite a lot. I am little embarrassed about the blog and do not know how to increase the readership. It is more that I do it for myself but I think I have interesting content to read and quite inspiring. After blogging for almost a year I am confidence that I want to do a blog about my life style, home decor, fashion, art, craft, travel, photography, cooking, self improvement, what inspire me, and I want to be honest to the reader about myself, my age. Do you think this course is the right course for me to follow ? By the way, I was just in Jakarta last January visiting my family. I went to Medan, North Sumatra and Bali as well. After living overseas for almost 15 years now {mainly in New York} I was stunned by the rapid change of Jakarta. But I cherish my life in Jakarta before, what a good life it was ! I was married to an expatriate also. The expatriate community was so much fun ! And I am sure still is.

    Looking forward to your comment; I thank you so very much.

    • April 1, 2012 9:41 am

      Thank you for leaving me a comment, Ellya! I wanted to write you back and had to wait till have some time to write, so I apologize for the late response. I looked at your beautiful blog and sensed that you know how to blog! Seeing the designs and the content, I think you will be able to take advantage of the course and enjoy it very much. The course is more about the content, design, techniques for blogging, photography, and self improvement. Jakarta has been wonderful although there are downsides of living in a big city such as traffic. Thanks again for visiting my blog!!

  40. Rene permalink
    March 30, 2012 10:45 pm

    Hi Kaho
    I came across your blog while browsing the net on Chatuchuk and found your entries really interesting. What caught me by surprise was when I read that you’ve worked as an interpreter for AWWA in Okinawa! I’m born in Singapore and lived in Okinawa 2008-2010 and also served as interpreter for AWWA in 2009-2010. What a pleasant surprised!

    • April 1, 2012 9:32 am

      Hi, Rene! What a coincidence! Your comment made me very excited! It is a pleasant surprise for me as well. :) I miss Okinawa!

  41. Irene permalink
    April 19, 2012 4:53 pm

    I really like your blog, I found a lot of inspiration here! I’m a follower from Italy. Thank you!

    • April 22, 2012 10:13 am

      All the way from Italy!! Thank you!!!

  42. May 28, 2012 8:29 am

    Hi Kaho, I stumbled upon your page thru the toics section but I’m glad I did. You have a great blog here.
    Thanks for sharing :)

  43. Benita permalink
    July 5, 2012 1:13 pm

    hi kaho, i stumbled upon your blog after seeing ur pinterest moodboards. i pinned quite a few of your interior design inspirations onto my own board. i think we have similar tastes in that! i’m singaporean and it’s interesting to learn that u’ve lived here for a period too! i think ur kids look so gorgeous–they have the pan asian look that it so model-esque. looking forward to reading more updates :)

    • July 6, 2012 4:38 pm

      Thank you so much for stopping by! I love Singapore and I already miss living there. I was quite surprise how expensive it has gotten to live there. Time has passed. Thanks for the compliments, too!!

  44. July 10, 2012 4:42 pm

    Hi Kaho oba-san !

    I’m Indonesian who accidentally visit your blog, but I should say ” Gee, thanks god I found a great blog ! ”
    you know oba-san, I really love things about Japan, and for some reason I like japanese people too. I had a close friend from japan, her name is Yukime. we were friends since high school, and honestly I love her. one day I expressed my feeling towards her, but the result is unexpected, after I expressed my feeling towards her, she left me :(
    so Kaho oba-san, maybe you can share about Japanese girls to me, so I didn’t make the same mistake in the future :)

    once again, you have a great blog oba-san, I like it !

  45. September 28, 2012 4:33 am

    Hi Kaho,

    Not sure if you still remember me. I’ve left few comments on your previous posts. We’re FS family who just arrived in Jakarta few weeks ago. That’d be lovely if we could have lunch together. Is there a way I can get in touch with you?

    eka

    • September 28, 2012 5:54 am

      Hi, Eka! Yes, I do remember! Welcome to Jakarta! Thanks for leaving me a message. If you could send me an email, that would probably be the best. chuzailiving{at}gmail{dot}com. Looking forward to hearing from you!

  46. October 3, 2012 6:50 am

    Hi Kaho, i’m Ija, i stumbled upon your blog while searching for furniture shops in Jakarta.. I’m Indonesian. And i love your blog!! I guess you’ve been to all those great spots in Jakarta more than I do.. We have something similar… You have two girls and a boy, i have to boys and a baby girl.. And i guess we share the same interests.. You can check them out in my blog.. It would be an honour if you were to visit my blog.. Looking forward for your next posts! Love the blog!! :))

    • October 3, 2012 8:06 am

      That’s so nice of you!! Thanks! You’re also in the challenge of raising 3 kids! I will come visit your blog. :) Thanks for leaving me a comment!

  47. Eva T permalink
    October 19, 2012 2:34 am

    Hi Kaho. I just found your blog and impressed. Are you still leaving in Jakarta ?

    • October 19, 2012 5:23 am

      Hi! Thanks! Yes, I do!

  48. Budi Iskandar permalink
    October 26, 2012 3:55 am

    Hi Kaho! My name is Budi, and I learned about you from my friend, Tjahjono (Cosmo).
    I enjoy reading your blog very much.
    I work in media, and I also write about restaurants in a free guide magazine about Jakarta.
    I hope things are well with you and your family.
    And maybe we can meet up in person for more foodie chats! :-p

    PS: Hey, I lived in LA for a few years, too! And oh how I miss those great Mexican food there!

    • October 28, 2012 2:11 am

      Hi, Budi! Thanks! Thanks for the encouraging comment. I appreciate it very much. Foodie chat is always fun! We miss Mexican food, too!

  49. Heidi permalink
    November 3, 2012 3:57 pm

    Hi Kaho! I’ve only made a small comment before, but I’d love to have some questions answered about visiting Indonesia (seasons), would you mind emailing me? bnhsanpedro@gmail.com

    • November 4, 2012 1:30 am

      I will try to send you an email soon, but if you’re in a hurry, my email is also on the side bar. You’re welcome to send me a message with questions to chuzailiving[at]gmail[dot]com. Just convert the words at and dot to actual [@] and [.].

  50. November 29, 2012 10:15 pm

    Kaho-san, hajimemashite. My name is Nakako. I came across your blog while searching for Plan B address. I fell in love at first sight with your blog, full of beautiful photos and lovely stories. I live in Kemang and close by my place is KOI restaurant and Papilion. Papilion is one of my favorite cafes in Jakarta! That’d be lovely if we could have tea together at the Papilion.
    BTW I took a similar photo there~ I attached the link.

    • November 30, 2012 1:03 am

      Hajimemashite~! Thanks for such a sweet comment about my blog! I’m flattered to hear that you fell in love with my blog!! I’m honored to hear that. I go to Kemang quite often. I would love to go back to Papilion again. Tea sounds great! :) I checked out your photos. You take beautiful photos!

  51. November 30, 2012 1:06 am

    Hi Kaho, What a fabulous blog you have. You seem like a really interesting person with a lot of joy in your life. You offer so much to look at and read. I will be visiting you often.
    With Warmest Regards from Heather

    • November 30, 2012 9:19 am

      Thanks for visiting my blog, Heather, and leaving me with such a sweet comment. I hope we can keep friendship through our blogs as I feel very inspired by your blog, too.

  52. December 29, 2012 11:06 am

    It sounds as if you are living life to the full and having a real adventure. Just stumbled upon your blog when I was researching how to get to Hoi An in Vietnam and I saw that you took the overnight train. I have two little girls (no son, though!) as well. Lovely blog so will revisit again. Best Torie

    • December 30, 2012 10:18 am

      Thanks for visiting, Torie!! I loved the train ride. I still think of our trip from Saigon to Hoi An fondly. Vietnam was so fun! I hope you’ll have a great trip! Thanks for visiting!!

  53. January 27, 2013 5:33 pm

    Hey there, Kaho. I’m Andre, but everybody calls me Dre, or Cabron. I work at Taco Local, where we met last Sunday. Your blog is amazing! Jakarta looks so much more beautiful through your viewfinder. I’m glad that it seems you are enjoying your stay in the Big Durian with your family.

    • January 27, 2013 10:13 pm

      Hi, Andre! We had a great time at Taco Local!! Definitely coming back! Thanks for the compliment! You think so? This is Jakarta that I see with my eyes! :) Thanks! I do love my life in Big Durian!! Thanks for visiting my blog!!!

  54. January 28, 2013 6:05 am

    Yea, your photos are really amazing. They say pictures can tell a thousand words? I think yours can say millions. It’s amazing that you doing this all in your spare time, and the fact that you are not getting paid for your top quality photos is perplexing. It’s a big compliment for me, too, as a native Indonesian, that a foreigner like you is spending so much time and effort to put together a beautifully done blog that whispers a sweet invitation for other foreigners to stop by. Awesome!

    I’m glad you and your family enjoyed our food. I hope we satisfied your craving for Mexican :) I know it’s hard to come by in this town. I hung out with one of your girls too; she was curiously wandering around the bike shop next door so I took her around for a tour. I never got the chance to know her name though. Tell her I said hi.

    Anyways, let me know if you’re ever in the neighborhood again. We’re actually opening a branch in Bali mid February, and I will be leaving on the 5th to start operations there. Don’t worry, our Jakarta mother branch won’t go anywhere. We got mouths to feed and burritos to serve! Hasta luego!

    • January 28, 2013 8:32 am

      Thanks for the long comment! So nice of you! I appreciate your kind words!! I love Indonesia and I feel that Jakarta does not get enough praise for how cool this city is. Many people tend to skip Jakarta because it lacks of touristy places like in Yogyakarta, Bali, Manado, etc. I have met so many young talented people like you who are younger than me and have accomplished so much. I see you guys and see the bright future for Indonesia. It is very energizing and exciting to be in this city because of the young entrepreneurs who are pulling this country to the future.

      Thanks for giving my girl a tour of the shop! She said to me that she hang out with a “boy”. That must’ve been you. :)

      Congrats on the new shop in Bali! That’s very exciting!! I have to go to your shop before 5th to take photos again then. I have photos, but I want to take better ones with more natural light. My neighbor friends love your taco shop, too. Keep up the good work!

  55. Adele Goh permalink
    February 1, 2013 9:30 pm

    Hi Kaho,
    I had been following your blog for quite some time now and i love reading all of them, looking at all the wonderful photos of your adorable kids & write-out about places which you had visited, through you i came across many nice places to shop & eat in Jakarta and where i can bring my partner to over the weekend :))

    Thank you so much!

    Regards,

    Adele Goh

    • February 2, 2013 9:50 am

      What a nice message! Thank you!! I am so happy to hear that my humble blog was able to give you some ideas to shop and eat!

  56. February 6, 2013 5:10 am

    Konnichiwa,

    I stumble upon your blog when I search the review for “The Goods Diner”. How random…and I am loving it! ’cause sometimes, from that randomness, I found interesting blog, like yours~
    I spent the whole afternoon,yesterday, reading all your posts (at the office, I am bad, I know!) and I realized, I think you know much more about the interesting side of Jakarta then I do, who born and live here since the day I was born! Amazing ^^

    I love Travel, Photography and design, but never put it anywhere, where I can express it mostly because I reasoned I don’t have the time. But If you have time to do it (with your 3 gorgeous angels), I think I have to get rid of that excuses! HA!

    Anyway, I really enjoy reading your blogs and your children….They are chooo kawaii!

    Already make a note on which restaurants & shops that I to go and I am looking forward to all your new posts!

    Cheers,

    Lina

    • February 6, 2013 6:18 am

      Konnichiwa! Thank you for such a nice compliment and spending your afternoon to read my posts! Yay! I am happy to hear that you enjoyed reading my blog!! I love Jakarta. ;)

  57. Uko permalink
    February 27, 2013 12:04 pm

    Kaho san!
    I’m your big fan now. I love your blog and ever since I run across your blog, I keep going back to read your posts whenever I get a chance. I’m here in jakarata with a baby girl too. I hope to bump into you one day!

    • February 27, 2013 12:52 pm

      Thank you for such a nice comment! I hope we can meet up, too. Have you been in Jakarta for a while?

  58. Uko permalink
    February 27, 2013 1:07 pm

    It’s my sencond year here, just came back with 5 months old baby in Dec. Your blog really inspired me to go out, go shopping or go to cool restaurants/shops. Reminded me that we can still be stylish being a MOMMY!

    • February 27, 2013 5:58 pm

      Awww, that’s so sweet! It’s helps that we have a help at home. My life with 3 kids would’ve been so much harder back home in Japan or the U.S. Thanks!!

  59. antonia permalink
    March 26, 2013 6:32 am

    Hallo..nice to find your blog :D

    Your blog make me want to explore more (south Jakarta especially)

    Now, I live in Pantai Indah Kapuk for 2 years, it’s close from Pluit
    I do drive but only know direction from mall to mall ;p

    Already bored with the mall..have to do my next adventure to Kemang.

    Btw, there is Waterbom PIK nearby my house..it’s a huge swimming area ( you could google it too)

    And I heard about tlaga arwana cibubur ( tlagaarwanacibubur.com)…you should check this out..i think fun for your kids

    • March 26, 2013 8:12 am

      Thanks for the comment!! I hear about Waterbom! My friend invited my daughter to go with her daughter, so my daughter has been to Waterbom, but I haven’t myself. It sounds like so much fun! I’ll check out Tiaga Arwana Cibubur online, too. Thanks for the recommendations!

  60. April 3, 2013 9:42 am

    Hi Kaho, stumbled on your blog while researching for write-ups on ITC Permata Hijau to show to my Singaporean colleagues who will be visiting Jakarta soon (I am from there) – thought it’d be helpful to show them some pictures what it looks like. I really like your writing, looking forward to read more posts soon! x

    • April 3, 2013 10:03 am

      So sweet of you to comment on my blog! Thank you for your compliment!

  61. sisi permalink
    May 7, 2013 2:17 am

    hi Kaho…i just browse a few places and fell in ur blog… i just want to say its very nice to see the city from ur point of view, and u give a lot of informations about stores that i always wanted to go to..but never had the time to stop by…
    so thanks so much…because of you i can narrow my store destinations without wasting my time…thankssss

    • May 7, 2013 11:10 am

      Sisi, thanks for your comment!! I hope the information I collected here will be helpful for your shop hunting in Jakarta! It’s my wish to have my blog help others find their favorites, so reading your comment made me happy. Enjoy shopping!!

  62. Gillian permalink
    May 17, 2013 3:56 am

    Just found your blog by chance, I am moving to Jakarta in August with my husband and 3 children. Your blog has got me so excited about our new life in Jakarta – lots to look forward to!

    • May 20, 2013 9:30 am

      I am very happy to know that my blog served in a way I have always wished it would! Good luck with your move!!

  63. July 5, 2013 3:00 am

    Hi, nice to know this blog by chance. Your blog will give new excitement on Jakarta

    • July 12, 2013 8:05 am

      I am glad to hear your comment! That is my wish. Thank you!!

  64. July 26, 2013 6:07 pm

    Salam dari Jakarta! Just found out your blog accidentally and love it! Very useful information and I love the way you capture everything. Can’t wait to read your next journey!!!

    • July 26, 2013 10:00 pm

      Terima kasih, Nita! I am glad you found my blog and I really appreciate your kind comment!

  65. Yvonne permalink
    August 27, 2013 5:23 am

    Hi How long did you stay in Jakarta Indonesia? I would love to get the chance to travel like you and Mr. Texan :)

    • August 27, 2013 11:49 am

      Hi, Yvonne! Awww. We were in Indonesia for 3 years. I couldn’t travel much domestically compared to many other expats even though it might look like we did a lot. I hardly saw the rest of Indonesia. Sob, sob. I went to Bali twice and Jogjakarta once and that was it in the 3 years. However, we went to Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore (for giving birth) as a family, and I went to Cambodia with my girl friends, so considering that, that was a lot of traveling we did in the region. Good luck! You’ll love it!!

  66. Anonymous permalink
    September 29, 2013 10:14 am

    hello, nice to see you here, love your journal and hope you will continue to inspire us, am Anne fr jakarta married wt french and live in romania. i used to have a flower shop in kemang http://www.garlandstore.com if you might want
    to take a look on my flower web but now its taking care by my sister. am checking out the authentique french bakery and will for sure visit them next year when we are coming to jakarta.
    Well, speak again soon and keep it up girl!

    Cheers
    Anne

    • September 29, 2013 12:24 pm

      Wow, you have an interesting background! I wish I knew your shop before I left Jakarta. I would’ve checked out your store!

  67. February 9, 2014 7:10 pm

    Hello, I think that your life must be quite challenging, regularly uprooting your children and adjusting to life in new countries/cities regularly. We found that travelling for 5 weeks with our children was challenging but it seems that you are living a much more challenging life every day and thriving!

    • February 10, 2014 12:33 pm

      Thank you! Expat life is not as tough as it may sound once you find yourself in a network of expat community. I find living overseas rewarding more than challenging and I recognize that this lifestyle suits my personality. During the summer, we visit our families and travel for 5 weeks and I find it much more challenging to live out of suitcases. I guess it’s the matter of perspective. Thank you for visiting!

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  1. I consulted Chuzai Living’s Blog before my Trip to Ho Chi Minh | Tiny Island
  2. Friday Finds ☆ Taco Local ☆ Pangalima Polim South Jakarta « Chuzai Living
  3. Friday Finds ☆ Taco Local ☆ Panglima Polim South Jakarta « Chuzai Living

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