One of the best things about raising kids in Japan is shichi-go-san (literally "7, 5, 3"), a special time when parents with daughters aged seven or three, and sons aged five, get dressed up in traditional kimonos and visit the Shinto shrine to celebrate their childrens' safe passage through life so far. It's also a great excuse to go to photo studios and get professional photos taken, which are treasured as family heirlooms. J-List buyer for artbooks, manga and Japanese study supplies has three daughters ("a lot of people talk about repopulating Japan, but J-List is doing something about it") and this week his middle daughter had her 7-5-3 ceremony, dressing up in a beautiful kimono to visit a Shinto shrine to pray for continued good luck in life. It's a great memory for children and their parents.
A fun Japanese ceremony for celebrating life.