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A weekly podcast for upper beginner to intermediate learners of Japanese. Listen to Yumi talk about... whatever she wants to talk about. Practice your listening comprehension with natural (howbeit slightly slowed down) Japanese on various topics such as Japanese culture, fun idioms, and, of course, cats. The episodes can be enjoyed in any order. -- Become a Makoto+ member and get show notes with a complete transcript and a list of key vocabulary. www.MakotoPlus.com
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Yumi

Yumi Hiko

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Welcome to the Yumi podcast, where amazing things happen. Cover art photo provided by Gabriel Benois on Unsplash: https://unsplash.com/@gabrielbenois
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Yumin碎碎念

Yumin碎碎念

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一個很愛碎碎念的人。 喜歡講一些大道理, 喜歡分享自己的想法, 也喜歡閱讀, 更喜歡不停的學習, 希望在這裡能有更多美好的體驗。 Powered by Firstory Hosting
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Discover the art of simple, family-friendly cooking with Yumi in this episode of "Nihongo no Tane." Join her as she shares her culinary journey, from experimenting with vegetarian recipes to catering to her family's diverse tastes. Don't miss this engaging and relatable episode! KEY VOCABULARY: 飽(あ)きられてしまいます Will get tired of [飽(あ)きる (to get tired …
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Ever wondered why Japanese kids dislike piman more than broccoli? Find out on this new episode of "Nihongo no Tane" as Yumi delves into the fascinating world of vegetables and their cultural significance. Don't miss this entertaining and educational episode! KEY VOCABULARY: ピーマン bell pepper [ピーマン is a transliteration of "piment," the French word fo…
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What happens when Yumi decides to tackle Spanish through English? Find out on this new episode of “Nihongo no Tane” as she shares the funny and challenging moments of her language learning journey. Tune in and join the adventure! KEY VOCABULARY: 何(なに)かと one thing or another バタバタしている to be very busy doing different things [a phrase used to describe …
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In this episode of her podcast, Yumi shares her personal story of dental discovery and recovery, emphasizing the vital role of dental care in our lives and the resilience needed to overcome oral health hurdles. Listen to this episode and let us know if you had some experience like this! KEY VOCABULARY: 歯(は)医(い)者(しゃ) - dentist [歯(は) (tooth); 医(い)者(し…
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In this episode of her podcast, Yumi delves into the profound impact of classical music on personal growth, inspired by violin prodigy Yoshimura Himari's mesmerizing performances. She beautifully narrates her own musical journey and the unexpected ways a popular manga stirred a friend's ambition to master Chopin, weaving a narrative that celebrates…
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Have you ever heard the term "神童" (shindou)? It refers to child prodigy, and this time, Yumi will talk about it. Listen to the podcast and let us know what you think about it in the comments below! KEY VOCABULARY: 神童(しんどう) child prodigy; genius; wonder child [神(しん) (god); 童(どう) (child)] 大(おと)人(な)に負(ま)けない as good as adults; comparable to adults; uny…
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Happy New Year! (Better late than never, right?). This year started not too good in Japan, with an earthquake and a plane crushing. So, this time Yumi will talk about it. Have you ever been in an earthquake? Let us know in the comments below! KEY VOCABULARY: 石川県(いしかわけん)能登(のと)半島(はんとう) the Noto Peninsula in Ishikawa Prefecture [石川県(いしかわけん) (Ishikawa …
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Let’s talk about sleep! This time, Yumi will talk about her sleeping time, what she was doing when she woke up during the night (and now she stopped!) and how daylight saving times could affect your life or the life of your pet. Listen this episode and let us know what you think! KEY VOCABULARY: 寝付(ねつ)きがいい easy to fall asleep; to fall asleep quickl…
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What do you eat during the day? Listen to the podcast and find out the new diet Yumi is doing! KEY VOCABULARY: 実際(じっさい)に actually; really; truly; indeed 具体的(ぐたいてき)に specifically; in detail [具体的 (specific); に (“-ly”; makes the preceding word into adverb form)] 薄(うす)める to dilute; to thin 炒(いた)め物(もの) stir-fry; stir-fried food [炒(いた)め (fry; broil; roas…
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Yumi continues her talking about the changes she made in her life. What do you think of these changes? Listen to the podcast to know all the changes she made! KEY VOCABULARY: 大腸(だいちょう)カメラcolonoscopy [大腸(だいちょう) (large intestine; colon)] がん cancer ポリープ polyp 麻(ま)酔(すい) anesthesia [麻(ま) (hemp; flax); 酔(すい) (drunk)] 痛(いた)くもかゆくもない “it’s no concern at all…
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Have you tried stair stepper? Listen to Yumi to know why is she doing it and how it helped her to be in better shape. KEY VOCABULARY: 階段(かいだん) stair; stairway 目標(もくひょう) goal; objective; target 心臓(しんぞう) heart 心臓(しんぞう)が口(くち)から飛(と)び出(だ)す one’s heart pops out of the chest [it’s a saying that describes bodily feeling where one’s heart is beating so fast…
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Yumi continues her talking about the changes she made in her life. What do you think of these changes? Listen to the podcast to know all the changes she made! KEY VOCABULARY: 順調(じゅんちょう)に steadily; smoothly; without a hitch 何(なん)度(ど)も many times; frequently; plenty of times  血液検(けつえきけん)査(さ) blood test; blood exam [血液(けつえき) (blood); 検(けん)査(さ) (check;…
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Yumi has made some changes in her life. What do you think she changed? Listen to the podcast and hear her reflections on this! KEY VOCABULARY: あまり~ない (there is ) not so much ~; (I have) not so much ~ [あまりmeans “very” or “much” when used with ~ない] これといって nothing special; not worth mentioning [always used with ~ない; “いって” is “言(い)って”, but usually writ…
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The Hurricane Idalia has come to Florida, and after its passage, it left Yumi without electricity for a few hours. This made Yumi think about the importance of electricity in her life. Listen to the podcast and hear her reflections on this! KEY VOCABULARY: 直撃(ちょくげき)する to hit directly [直(ちょく) (direct); 撃(げき) (hit; attack)] 避(ひ)難(なん)する to evacuate; f…
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Finally, the trip to Japan ended and Yumi and her family are back in Florida. So, this time Yumi will reflect on the trip and the impressions she had during it. Listen to the podcast and learn what was the thing that left a big impression on her this time! KEY VOCABULARY: 総(そう)まとめ total conclusion; roundup; overall summary [総(そう) (total); まとめ (conc…
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A few months ago, Yumi comment us about the souvenirs she was planning to take to Japan for family and friends. Now that she’s back, she will tell us which are the ones that people liked and which ones may have not being such a success. Listen to the podcast to find out! KEY VOCABULARY: 経(た)つ (for time) to pass 落(お)ち着(つ)く to settle down 反応(はんのう) re…
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This is the final part of the long-awaited journey to Japan! This time, Yumi will tell us about an incredible visit to USJ and more about Tokyo. Listen to the podcast and pay attention to her recommendations for your next trip to Japan! KEY VOCABULARY: たどり着(つ)くfinally arrive at; to get to (at last); find one’s way to 書斎(しょさい) library; study; sanctu…
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In this episode, Yumi will tell us about the troubles she encountered while in Japan. Can you imagine what was the most difficult thing during her stay there? You may never imagine what was… Listen to the podcast and find out what it was! KEY VOCABULARY: 随分(ずいぶん) considerably; rather; fairly; quite お久(ひさ)しぶり it has been a long time [お 久(ひさ)しぶりis po…
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In the previous episode, Yumi talked about her arrival to Japan. This time, she will talk about what she and her family did after that, like going on a sightseeing bus in Tokyo or visiting an old friend. But, arriving at the countryside where her parents live after going around Tokyo made her wonder about the differences you can find between big ci…
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Finally, Yumi and her family are in Japan! It’s been a long time since the last visit, and it seems things have changed. At least, at the convenience stores! Listen to her and take note of ideas for souvenirs for your next trip! KEY VOCABULARY: 片(かた)付(づ)け tidying up 一段落(いちだんらく) stopping point (before the next stage) [段落 (end; end of a paragraph)] 復…
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In the previous episode, Yumi told us she’s going back to Japan with her family. But she was having some issues deciding what to pick as souvenir for her family and friends. This time, she will talk about what she bought and where. Listen to her and take note of ideas for souvenirs for your next trip! KEY VOCABULARY: 何人(なんにん)か分(ぶん) portion for some…
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Yumi is going back to Japan with her family! This is a long-awaited trip. Soon they will be reunited with family and friends, but… There is something troubling Yumi’s mind. Listen to the podcast to know more about it! KEY VOCABULARY: 帰(き)省(せい) homecoming visit; going to one’s parents’ home うんうんうなるto moan (in pain or in discomfort) [うんうん (onomatopoe…
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In the previous podcast, Yumi started to talk about her family trip to St. Augustine. Don’t miss the end of this story, where she explains the main reason of their trip and why she couldn’t sleep well that night. KEY VOCABULARY: 予(よ)約(やく) reservation; booking 無(む)効(こう) invalid; void 慌(あわ)てて in a hurry; in haste [fixed phrase] 近(ちか)場(ば) nearby place…
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This time Yumi went to a trip to St. Augustine, a city she usually goes with her family to the beach. But this time she made a different kind of trip. In this first part of Saint Augustine’s trip story, she tells us about the history of the fortress located there, San Marcos, among other things. KEY VOCABULARY: 昔(むかし)ながらの unchanged as old time; as …
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Japanese culture about nakedness is different from the occidental one. Japanese people go to onsen naked while most occidental people would feel embarrassed for doing this. In this podcast, Yumi talks about it, and about the changes over time around this culture. KEY VOCABULARY: 恥(は)ずかしがる to be shy of; to be bashful お相(す)撲(もう)さん Sumo wrestler(s) [a…
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Description: Japan is a country with many hot springs. Going to one is an experience you may not want to miss during your stay in Japan. Listen to Yumi talking about ryokans, hot springs and how she overcame the embarrassment about going naked to one. KEY VOCABULARY: 湧(わ)いてきた started gushing out; started bubbling out [湧(わ)いて from 湧(わ)く(to gush out)…
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Yumi went with her family to see the Super Mario Brothers movie. Listen to Yumi talk about her thoughts on the movie and what she wanted to do after watching it! KEY VOCABULARY: 公開(こうかい)される to be open; to be open to the public [公開(こうかい) (opening to the public; release)] 話(わ)題(だい)に上(のぼ)る to come up in conversation [話(わ)題(だい) (topic)] 毎週(まいしゅう)のように a…
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Last time, Yumi talked about things she does on a daily basis. This time, she speaks about things she does occasionally and then things she would like to do in the future. KEY VOCABULARY: こまめに frequently; diligently; regularly 大(おお)掃(そう)除(じ) major cleanup 掃(そう)除(じ)機(き) vacuum cleaner 拭(ふ)く to wipe 隅(すみ)っこ corner; recess [隅(すみ)っこ is casual or spoken…
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In today’s episode, Yumi shares a few things she does every single day (or almost every day). KEY VOCABULARY: 精神的(せいしんてき) psychological; mental; spiritual [精神(せいしん) (mind; spirit; soul); 的 suffix (-ical, -ive, -al, -ic,-y and etc.)​]  専門的(せんもんてき) professional; [専門(せんもん) (specialty; expert; area of expertise)] 運動(うんどう)不(ぶ)足(そく) lack of physical exer…
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Yumi brought her family to Universal Studios in Orlando and couldn't help but compare the experience to her visit to Universal Studios in California more than two decades ago. Both the theme park and Yumi herself have undergone significant transformations since then. KEY VOCABULARY: 遠足(えんそく) school trip; field trip 揃(そろ)って all together [揃(そろ)う(to m…
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Yumi is worried about inflation. Everything is more expensive. Still, she maintains a positive outlook with affirmations and positive thinking. Even when bad things happen, there is always something to be grateful for. KEY VOCABULARY: 必死(ひっし)に with one’s best effort; work very hard to do something; with one’s best effort; desperately 節約(せつやく)する sav…
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In this episode of Nihongo no Tane, Yumi discusses onomatopoeia in Japanese. She mentions that there are approximately 5,000 onomatopoeic words in Japanese, making it the language with the most onomatopoeia in the world. Onomatopoeic words can have multiple meanings and be used in various situations. For example, you probably know ペラペラ to mean "flu…
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Yumi wraps up her talk about buying two cars and the problem with buying insurance for teenage drivers. KEY VOCABULARY: 更新(こうしん)する to renew; to update 代理店(だいりてん) agency 事(じ)情(じょう)circumstance; condition; situation 担当(たんとう) being in charge; being 曇(くも)った表(ひょう)情(じょう) worried/sad look on one’s face [曇(くも)った (cloudy); 表情(ひょうじょう) (facial expression; fac…
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Today, Yumi continues her story about her recent car-buying experiences. KEY VOCABULARY: 普通(ふつう)(の) normal; common 結構(けっこう) fairly 頑張(がんば)る endure; survive; keep at it; make an effort 自宅(じたく) one’s home; one’s house めでたく happily; with much joy [this word has a celebratory connotation to it] 面倒(めんどう)な troubling; troublesome; difficult [面倒(めんどう)(trou…
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Until recently, Yumi’s family has only had one car. This is unusual in the part of Florida that she lives in. Most families have at least two cars. But Yumi and Clay both work from home and until their son got his driver’s license, they rarely had need for a second car. But now their son has his license, Yumi decided … it was time. KEY VOCABULARY: …
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February 3rd was setsubun in Japan. The day that marks the end of winter and is followed by the beginning of spring. Listen as Yumi tells us a little bit about how this special occasion is celebrated in Japan. KEY VOCABULARY: 節分(せつぶん) last day of winter in the traditional Japanese calendar 立春(りっしゅん) first day of spring in the traditional Japanese c…
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In today’s podcast, Yumi digs deep into an interesting superstition which caused the birth rates to plummet one year in the 1960s. It has to do with the Chinese Zodiac, the Edo period, and Natsume Souseki. Listen to find out about this fascinating bit of historical trivia. KEY VOCABULARY: 十二支(じゅうにし) 12 animal signs of Chinese zodiac 干支(えと) 60 year …
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Yumi recently visited Silver Springs, a nature park in Florida which is famous for its glass bottom boats and manatees. Did you know manatees may have been mistaken for mermaids? Yumi then shares some stories about Japanese mermaids. KEY VOCABULARY: 州立公園(しゅうりつこうえん) state park 被害(ひがい) damage; injury; harm 諦(あきら)める give up; abandon 水(みず)湧(わ)く spring …
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Sometimes simple analogies hit home the hardest. Learning a language is like breathing. It’s the small repetitive acts that keep us going and growing. Keep growing your Japanese little by little by studying, reading, and listening to Japanese daily. KEY VOCABULARY: 新年(しんねん)の抱負(ほうふ) New Year’s resolution 一番(いちばん)最初(さいしょ)に the very first thing… 痩せたい …
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In this short message, Yumi has some good news to share with the New Year. KEY VOCABULARY: 令和(れいわ)5(5)年(ねん) Reiwa 5 西暦(せいれき) Western calendar 新年早々(しんねんそうそう) early in the New Year; at the beginning of the New Year 引(ひ)っ越(こ)し move (to a new house) 実家(じっか) one’s parent’s home; home where one grew up in 長(なが)い間(あいだ) long time 孫(まご) grandchildren 低学年(てい…
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As the year 2022 comes to a close, Yumi thinks back on all the things that happened to her and her family this year. KEY VOCABULARY: 今年(ことし) this year 最後(さいご) last; final 何(なに)も覚(おぼ)えていません don’t remember anything 性格(せいかく) personality; character 写真(しゃしん) photo 娘(むすめ) daughter ウクレレ ukulele いわゆる the so-called 弾(ひ)き語(がた)り singing to one’s own accompani…
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This year’s kanji has been selected. Out of 220,000 votes, the kanji for war or battle was chosen. Yumi talks about this as well as what’s been going on in Japan recently. KEY VOCABULARY: 戦争(せんそう) war 漢字能力検定(かんじのうりょくけんてい)協会(きょうかい) Kanji Proficiency Test Association 戦(たたか)う to fight; to battle 全国(ぜんこく) all of the country; the whole country 印象(いんしょう)…
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Yumi’s daughter speaks Japanese, but sometimes incorrectly. In today’s episode, Yumi tells us how her daughter messes up “to give” in Japanese, and this spurred her to research how to best teach あげる・くれる・もらう(give and receive). Yumi discovered the key is to understand Japanese culture. Listen as she explains. KEY VOCABULARY: あげる・くれる・もらう To Give and R…
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Yumi has a problem. The three large pecan trees in her backyard have produced tons of pecans. In this episode, she talks about what she’s doing with the pecans and then compares pecans to chestnuts in Japan. KEY VOCABULARY: ピーカン pecan 我(わ)が家(や) my house 裏庭(うらにわ) backyard 地面(じめん) ground 食(く)い込(こ)む bite into; to dig into; to encroach 敷(し)き詰(つ)められた to…
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In this episode Yumi talks about Kuroyanagi Tetsuko, a longtime announcer and personality, and her secrets for living long and well. KEY VOCABULARY: 義理(ぎり)のお母さん Mother-in-law 物忘(ものわす)れ forgetfulness 予防(よぼう) prevention 若々(わかわか)しく youthful 将来(しょうらい)に備(そな)えたい to prepare for the future 黒柳徹子(くろやなぎてつこ) Kuroyanagi Tetsuko (born August 9, 1933) 女優(じょゆう) ac…
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Description: It’s Thanksgiving and Black Friday season in the US. Yumi talks a little about what she and her family is doing and compares that with Japanese holidays. KEY VOCABULARY: 感謝祭とブラックフライデー Thanksgiving and Black Friday For upper beginners to intermediates. Listen to the short podcast and then answer the comprehension questions on the websit…
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Daylight savings time in America is the one thing all Americans can agree to hate, and yet… they still can’t seem to come together long enough to pass a law to rid themselves of the twice-a-year menace. Yumi shares her thoughts and hope that this “Fall back” will be the last. KEY VOCABULARY: 夏時間(なつじかん) summer time 早起(はやお)き rising early 時刻(じこく) time…
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Yumi’s family band! It was one of her dreams and recently her family had a chance to perform. Listen as she tells us her thoughts on families coming together to perform. KEY VOCABULARY: 弾(ひ)きます to play (stringed instrument such as piano or guitar) 中級(ちゅうきゅう)の初(はつ)め beginning of intermediate stage 音符(おんぷ) musical notes 伴奏(ばんそう) (musical) accompanime…
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Fall is a great time for families to get together and have fun. In this episode, Yumi shares a little about a recent multi-family getogether. There was much talking, children playing, and then… someone brought out a rope for a game of tug-of-war. KEY VOCABULARY: 遊(あそ)びに行(い)く to go visit (someone); to have fun with ちっちゃい子(こ)どもさん a small child それぞれ思(…
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Most years, Yumi takes her family to a nearby farm to experience cows, goats, fun outdoor activities, and homemade ice cream. Clay… didn’t do very well in the heat. Listen as Yumi talks about this year’s trip, and her thoughts on cows. KEY VOCABULARY: 秋(あき) fall; autumn 牧場(ぼくじょう) farm 先日(せんじつ) the other day 同士(どうし) fellow (cousin); mutual 写真(しゃしん) …
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