Toei Kyoto Studio Park | Kyoto, Japan | 3 of 4


Warning, the next two installments of the Toei Kyoto Studio Park are going to be super geeky. If you are uninterested, take a moment to peruse my other offerings from our Japan trip. Maybe a glance at the stunning Arashiyama Bamboo Groves or the magnificent Fushimi Inari Shrine? If you are a super geek like Markus and I, get ready to fulfill your otaku dreams with some Super Sentai.

If you were anything like us as kids, you devoted some of your television time to Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. I have to admit that I was clueless to it's original Japanese counterpart, but not Markus. He knew all about the original predecessors. As a kid from the early 80s, he spent afternoons watching Spectreman, Ultraman and Godzilla. That's why spent an obscene amount of time in this part of the theme park. I didn't mind though, anything to make the boy happy!

Toei Kyoto Studio Park | Kyoto, Japan | 2 of 4


So this one time, I travelled to a far away land called Japan. In the beautiful city of Kyoto, I found a village that was somehow lost in time. It was the middle of August and the days were long and hot. I was incredibly parched as I walked through the village. When I thought I would die of dehydration, I saw this well. Luckily, a handsome gentleman offered to fetch me some water. I believe I would've perished if it weren't for him.

Okay, but seriously, can we just talk about how dreamy my husband is? He's gonna be so embarrassed. Oh well! I can't help it if I'm one lucky lady.


Toei Kyoto Studio Park | Kyoto, Japan | 1 of 4


Since Kyoto is amazing and there was so much to do, we almost missed out on an amazing attraction. As you all know, Markus and I are very geeky. In my last post, we visited the Kyoto International Manga Museum. On our last day in Kyoto, we visited the Toei Kyoto Studio Park, the only film set theme park in Japan. It also had heaps of exhibits that included anime, manga and Super Sentai. For our first post about the theme park, we walked through the sets and traveled back in time to Feudal Japan. I had a great time walking through the sets and we even came across a camera crew filming a fight scene. It as incredible and something I will always remember! 


Kyoto International Manga Museum | Kyoto, Japan


As the wife of an amazing artist, it was a given that we would visit the Kyoto International Manga Museum. The museum consists of multiple rooms filled with shelves of manga. It was really exciting walking through and perusing manga through the ages. Unfortunately, we could not take photos of the actual museum and exhibits. Although, there was one area that we had free reign to take photos, the cafe. I may have gone a bit overboard, but the walls were covered in illustrations from visiting artists. It was incredible.

The highlight of the trip was when we had the resident artist sketch us in manga style. She was so cute and I couldn't resist taking a photo with her. I really loved the illustration and I think she perfectly captured Markus and I. Overall, the Kyoto International Manga Museum is a must-see for anyone who would enjoy an afternoon perusing manga from the past and the present.

Goldberry Woods Bed and Breakfast | Union Pier, Michigan


For my 31st birthday last year, Markus took me to a fantastic bed and breakfast in Michigan, Goldberry Woods. Usually I plan all of our trips, but he wouldn't let me plan a thing. It was quite the reversal and it was wonderful! Goldberry Woods is quite magical.

All the rooms at Goldberry are named after types of trees. The beds are also constructed with materials from the same tree. Markus booked the American Hornbeam room and the bed was something out of a Tim Burton movie. Some people would've been terrified, but I loved it. When you looked up at the branches at night, it felt like sleeping in the woods. We spent most of our time traipsing about in the forest and visiting antique shops. It was the perfect weekend and I'm so thankful that I have a husband who plans such great trips!


Cruz Family Christmas Card


For the past nine years, all I've wanted to do is send customized Christmas cards. The most important part of this process? The photo. Thankfully Markus booked a couple nights at this awesome bed and breakfast, Goldberry Woods, for my birthday. Goldberry is in Michigan and just an hour and half outside the city. It's definitely an idyllic spot and the perfect place for a festive photo.

On Saturday morning, we woke up early and donned our matching outfits. It snowed the night before and it created a beautiful winter wonderland. We trekked through a nearby forest and found so many great spots. We took so many photos and in the end, had way too many to choose from. The photo above is the one we ultimately chose. We thought it was playful and perfectly showcased our personalities. I'm a bit sad that we can't use any of the other photos, but at least I get to share them with you!

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