J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:
* * * * * * * F R U G A L W A T C H * * * * * * * *
A weekly roundup of how to be frugal in the world's most
expensive country to live (unless you read this!), written
and compiled by Wendy J. Imura.
Regular edition, February 15, 2005 Issue No. 44
- What's new (Freecycle? in Japan)
- Bargain Roundup: Easter's Almost Here!
- Frugal tips (Natural Easter Egg Dyes)
SIGN UP FOR FREE!: Send a blank email to
=============== ICA Event ===================
ICA Feb. 17 Event
Presenter -John Kirch, Regional Director for Asia/Pacific,
Ubiquity Software Corporation
Topic - VoIP & SIP are the Future of Telecommunications
RSVP required Complete event details at http://www.icajapan.jp/
Date: Thursday, Feb. 17, 2005
Time: 6:30 Doors open, sit down dinner included
Cost: 3,000 yen (members), 5,500 yen (non-members),
Free drink at bar for this event
Open to all - Location is Foreign Correspondents' Club
======= AMT Group's Development ===============
Exclusive "Leadership Awareness Seminar" at AMT Group's
Development Den in Yotsuya. 10:00 - 15:00, March 24 & 25
In a small group (maximum 6 participants) you will:
* Learn and apply new leadership tools
* Access over 100 ways to motivate yourself and others
* Enjoy presenting before a group of peers and professional
Total investment: JPY97,000.
E-mail email@example.com for details and to register.
+++ WHAT'S NEW
Dear Frugal Readers,
In continuing with our late January-early February "spring
cleaning theme,"I thought I'd introduce a unique resource
available worldwide for the recycling of free items, also
known as "freecycling."
The Freecycle Network(TM) was started in 2003 in Tuscon,
Arizona, to promote waste reduction and help save the desert
landscape. The first Freecycle Group started an electronic
forum where individual and non-profit groups could "recycle"
unwanted items. Currently, almost two years after the
start to Freecylcing, nearly 2,328 communities worldwide
have Freecycle (TM) groups.
How does it work? Well, it's all grassroots. Each local
group is run by a volunteer moderator. Membership in the
group is free, and each group has its own rules. When you
want to find a new home for something (be it clothing,
books, a piece of furniture, toys, or even an unused gift),
simply send an e-mail to the Freecycle Group advertising it.
You can also use the list to acquire something yourself by
posting a message "Seeking XYZ." The only main rules are
that the items be free, legal, and appropriate for all ages.
In Japan, there are several Freecycle groups. There is a
Japan-wide list (started by yours truly) which boasts 232
members, a Tokyo Group with 121, an Okinawa group with 136,
and several other local groups with smaller membership
figures. The Freecycle Japan list is unique in that it is
nationwide, and takes advantage of the Japan Post and
delivery companies' chakubarai, or cash payment on delivery,
services, thus reducing the burden on the sender.
While the list is sometimes quiet, so far during February
the following items have been offered for free: a double
burner stove, baby clothes, a metal shelf, Topeka baby
bicycle accessories, sweets and Chinese teas, back issues
of "Mothering" magazine, a box of romance novels, and
numerous other items. People have also posted looking
for items as diverse as red dresses, Beijing travel
books, a floor lamp, and CFA study books. In the last
year and a half, at least 350 items have changed hands
(based on the number of posts).
Freecycling is, in general, a happy concept. It allows
you to both find a home for unwanted items, and to also
search for items for free. While Japan numbers are
impressive, membership in Freecycle groups in the US
numbers in the thousands or tens of thousands in some
cities. The more people involved, the better your
chances of freecycling are. In you are interested in
learning more about Freecycling or want to join,
visit www.freecycle.org, the global clearinghouse
for all Freecyle groups.
Wendy J. Imura
(www.freecycle.org referenced in the above article
Email Marketing Works
Study after study shows that email marketing ranks among the
most effective, and cost-effective, methods of reaching your
audience. However, constructing an effective email marketing
campaign involves far more than simply stuffing your customer's
inboxes. Follow up mailing, reporting, personalization,
autoresponders and, of course, crafting of the appropriate
message are all essential components of a successful campaign.
Ashley Associates Ltd. (http://www.ashleyassociates.co.jp) is
a leading provider of email marketing solutions. For more
information, or to request a free white paper please contact
+++ BARGAIN ROUNDUP: Easter's Almost Here!
A little less than a month from now, and we'll be awash
in bunnies, eggs, and green plastic grass. While the
Christian origins of the holiday may be lost in
Japan's secular society, the commercial aspects seem to
be more and more prevalent. Here, we've located some
Easter bargains to help prepare you to celebrate this
fun holiday, whether its with your "eikaiwa"
class or your own kids!
*Easter Reward Stickers - 60/pkg (215 yen)
Japanese students love stickers, and what better way to
'internationalize'(can you tell I was a JET?) than using
Easter stickers. An overstock from last year, these
stickers are 50 percent off at the Foriegn Buyers Club, a
good deal available on a first-come, first-served basis.
*Mini Cottontail and Carrot Erasers - 144/pkg. (345 yen)
This is a great prize for games or other activities if
you're teaching, because stationery supplies are a very
popular reward. The cute white rabbit and carrot designs
are sure to leave a good impression. Also 50% off at
Foriegn Buyers Club.
*Dudley's Egg Color Kit - 1 EA (490 yen)
The basic kit, but more than enough for your average
egg-dyeing party. Includes 6 crystal color packets,
9 egg holders, 88 Easter stickers, 1 plastic egg dying
tray (I find an egg carton works just as well), 1 egg
dipper, and 1 wax crayon. The best part: no smelly
vinegar needed - just add water and color. Very popular
for kids' Easter parties.
------------- ADVERTISEMENT ------------------
Interested in reasonably-priced translation and interpreting
services? Check out our affiliated service, Nihongo Benriya,
for information about our specialties and prices.
Interested in learning more about saving money in Japan? Visit
www.frugaljapan.com, a website stocked with tips, resources, and
articles to help you live abundantly on very little. And it's all
(Both Frugal Japan.com and Nihongobenriya.com are Occams
+++ FRUGAL TIPS (Natural Easter Egg Dyes)
(Adapted from http://frugalliving.about.com/cs/easter/a/eggcolors.htm
First wash the eggs in mild soap and warm water. Boiling
or soaking the eggs longer will make the color deeper.
Use a teaspoon of vinegar to help set the dye in these
colors. Add it about the same time you add an egg.
Green: Save the water from canned or fresh cooked spinach
and boil eggs in it. Pale yelow: Add carrot tops, celery
seed, or orange peel to water for boiling eggs.
Deep yellow: Put ground tumeric in the water for boiling
eggs, or use yellow onion skins.
Tan: Coffee or tea.
Blue: Red cabbage leaves. Boil the leaves in water, then
use the cool liquid to dye boiled eggs.
Lavender: Purple grape juice.
Pink: Use the liquid from canned or pickeled beets, or red
(Note: Unless you plan to actually use the above
ingredients in addiiton to dyeing with them, it might
be cheaper to buy the chemical color packs!)
=============== B U R E A U ===================
- Serviced Apartments in Tokyo -
BUREAU serviced apartment complex offers an attractive
exterior design and stylish interior furnishings. A concierge
is available on weekdays to assist our special guests. A
perfect alternative to hotel living, BUREAU is the choice for
demanding executives on short to extended stays in Tokyo.
MONTHLY & EXECUTIVE serviced apartments for RENT
===== CHIBA TODAY--Subscribe to Japan's New Biotech Newsletter ====
If you're involved in biotechnology or genome research, Chiba
Prefecture wants your business. It is aggressively building
its resume as Japan's leader in these 21st century industries.
Japan is the world's 2nd largest biotech/genome market. Our
newsletter will bring you information from Chiba Prefecture, as
well as the Japan market at large. Sign up for our newsletter here:
Subscribers: 667 as of February 15, 2005
+++ ABOUT US
Written by: Wendy J. Imura (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Edited by: JI
SIGN UP: Send a blank email to
Send letters (Feedback, Inquiries & Information) to the
editor at email@example.com
For more information on advertising in this newsletter:
Copyright 2005 Japan Inc. Communications Inc.