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Teriyaki Teddy Bento (514)

The other day I had one of those Horrible Parent episodes. It was the 4th of July and the plan was to take the kids to see Toy Story 3 around lunchtime and then go home for a nap and head out in the afternoon for Ala Moana to see the fireworks show. Unfortunately, Mr. Pikko had an allergy attack and we couldn’t go and we ended up camping out in the living room watching the Star Wars marathon on Spike TV. The kids were really enjoying it, which tickled me silly, until Buddy suddenly realized that the popping noises outside were fireworks.

At first he was just excited, but then after a few he looked at me and said, “Mommy, is it America’s birthday?” I told him that yes, it was. Suddenly he broke down in tears and said that he’d “missed America’s birthday” and that we were supposed to play “sprinklers” to celebrate. I apologized to him repeatedly and took him to the bathroom to sing Happy Birthday to America and blow out a candle. He was still brokenhearted for the rest of the night and I felt like total crap.

To make things even worse, his school calendar says today they’re going to share their weekend experiences. I’m pretty sure he won’t remember going to the movies, but maybe he’ll remember that Brock Lesnar won on Saturday? That was really cute. We watched it at Grandma J’s house and when she came to ask what we were yelling about, he yelled, “BROCK LESNAR WON, GRAMMA!” Him and Baby Girl spent about an hour playing UFC together after that. For the next two days, he kept complaining his body hurt, poor guy.

Teriyaki Teddy Bento

This is a quick bento I threw together this morning in under 10 minutes. I’d made the musubi the night before, wrapped it in saran wrap, and stored it in a bag with the corn and meat, which we had at Grandma J’s house. I plopped a pre-cut nori panda from a packet I have and cut the teri beef with kitchen shears into little strips.

Many thanks to the folks at Marukai who put together my two book signings! They made really big posters at the store and I got to meet some very nice people at both signings. One woman came by just to congratulate me on being published at such a young age, telling me it’s been a dream of her own for a long time. Another brought her two kids and had me take a photo with them, then informed me that Stephanie is a fan of my blog and she had me sign a note for her. Thanks Stephanie!!

Marukai Sign

Here’s the cool poster they made! Big thanks to Susan who came by the Ward store with her family and gave me a lei! I also got to reconnect with an old friend from high school who came by to see me. The price for the book at Marukai was actually a very good deal. The book was selling for $12.99. They still have copies if you’d like to pick one up and couldn’t make it to the signing!

On Saturday, I had the Ala Moana Barnes signing, which was very nice. I was at a table in the front of the store and a nice big sign was in the front window.

Barnes Front

Baby Girl started cracking up laughing when she saw this.


Here’s the penguin musubis at the table after I’d set up. As you can see, Baby Girl was in a really weird mood. The funniest part about the signing was that almost every time I offered a penguin musubi to someone passing by they’d usually say something like, “Oh those are real?!”

I have to give thanks to Haunani for making me feel so welcome at the store. Apparently her favorite one in the book was the penguins, so when I showed up with a tupperware full of them she was totally tripping out. I also have to thank my family for coming by and supporting me!

I finally got to meet LOST blogger Ryan Ozawa and his family too! Read his review of Yum-Yum Bento here!

Penguin Musubis

Here’s a closer look at the penguins. I changed the cheeks, opting to use dabbed hana ebi instead of circle meats. I had used somen noodles to attach the noses, but that was a terrible idea since the somen was way too soft once it moistened up.

Buddy was surprisingly well-behaved and I actually kept him with me at the table for about half the time before he got bored. When he saw me on Sunrise at Grandma J’s, he kept replaying the TiVo recording and watched me like 5 times. Later, when I asked him if he’s my number one fan, he said yes and began fanning me with his hand and blowing in my face. LOLOLOL!!!

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  • Such cute penguin musubi!

    You should be very proud of your accomplishments and your book. I picked up my copy at Uwajimaya in Seattle while on a trip there, and I just think you did a fantastic job. It’s a great resource for ideas, and really encourages anyone to give bento lunches a try. I am sure you will look back on this time as one of your biggest Adventures in Bentomaking!

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  • LOL Pikko! Your son seems to get his distinct humor from you? What a great idea to make penguin musubi for the signing! They’re so cute.

  • The penguins are too cute! I defiantly want to try and make these.
    That was my BFF Sharon from “Mama’s A Mess” blog that came by to get your autograph for me. She actually was going to have you sign your book and ship it to me as a surprise but then found out I already bought the book…lol But that’s okay I will paste it to the inside cover. Can’t wait to get it I will blog all about it along with the picture of you with her girls 🙂

  • Yummy lunch and I looove the penguins! They are too cute! Kidlet had the same upset about the 4th of July…he had an asthma attack for the first time and we had spent the night in the ER so we slept all day. I didn’t think he would care but he insisted we do sparklers and have a barbeque the next day 😛

  • Your kids are crackups. Wish we could have stopped by too!
    Cute little penguins. Did the people walk away holding them gently? Haha!

  • Wow what a great event…sorry I missed it. Your kids seem like so much fun…I love that he was fanning you! lol! The penguins looks so adorable all finished. So funny she didn’t think they were real! Nice job Crystal! Baby girl is still cracking me up!

  • Karen

    love the cute Teddy cut- out! Wish I can get the book NOW and get it signed by u! I hv ordered online and am now waiting patiently for it..sigh… =) cheers/ Karen

  • Malisa

    Hi Pikko! LOVE, love those penguins! I made them for my girls tonight and they LOVED them- so much that they wouldn’t eat them becuase they were so cute! Thanks for always inspiring me to make cute, healthy lunches!!! I was looking in J-list… did you know they have a Hello Kitty pancake waffle iron just for american pancakes??!! That other one for the “Moffle” (which I guess if for a mochi/waffle thing popular in Japan) shouldn’t have been advertised to make “pancakes”… This new one looks like it would make pancakes way easier and is almost half the price of that other one!

  • The penguins are adorable! So is the panda! <3 The penguins remind me of when I made penguins out of black olives, carrots, and cream cheese.

  • Ms.T

    Hi Pikko,

    I live in Hilo and am sooooooo looking forward to your book signing. However, in this mornings Hawaii Tribune Herald the front page stated that Borders Hilo is closing “probably by the end of the month”. I immediately thought of you and hope you can still make it!!! Maybe you could do it at Basically Books or Book Gallery (next to Y’s Lunch Shop) 😉


  • Thank you Sonoma Bento! I’m really glad you like the book! 🙂

  • Haha, I guess it’s possible, though most probably comes from Daddy! 🙂

  • I can’t wait to see it, they were so cute!

  • Awww, poor lil guy!

  • Haha, someone took one and was like, “I don’t know if I can eat it….”

  • They’re only fun at home. When they go out they turn into turtles, lol.

  • I hope you get it soon, Karen.

  • OMG, you totally need to read my review/kitchen disaster of that thing:

  • Thanks Alice! 😀 Do you have a picture of your penguins?

  • Hi Misty,

    Sadly, they called me on Sunday to cancel. I am going to write about it today. 🙁

  • hi my name is gabriela and i have been reading about your website and how much you love bento makin and i just wanted to say i love wat u do ive been trying to make bento but my dad wont take me (p.s im a kid so ya) my lazy dog wont get off me :3

  • Torin

    I clicked on the link for the teddy, but instead I fell in love with the penguins >w<
    They're so adorable~!!

  • Celeste

    where did you buy the panda cutter from? i have been looking all over the place for one.

  • It’s actually a pre-cut piece of nori from some animal set of nori sheets.