AAPI Heritage Month: What To Watch, Learn, Store & Pay attention To

Blissful Might, associates!

It’s been some time, hasn’t it? I really feel like 2023 is on super-speed — like a sudden onset of delayed FOMO has occurred, and all of the pie slices of my life are furiously attempting to make up for misplaced time and alternatives. (Simply me? All the time was a late bloomer.)

And since I’m all the time, all the time my very own worst enemy, I made a decision, “Oh! I do know! On prime of the whole lot else happening, I ought to write one thing for TME this month.” As a result of, you already know what? Might is a crucial month to me, and I really like you guys, and I’ve THINGS to share that can’t wait! (And, actually, what’s just a few extra nights of sleep deprivation within the grand scheme of issues?)

Soooo…I’ve been collaborating in and organizing varied celebrations of Asian American and Pacific Islander heritage throughout the month of Might — actually since highschool — and this 12 months I lastly realized why it occurs in Might! Isn’t that ridiculous? In case you’re like me and didn’t know, it’s because May is the month when the first Japanese immigrants arrived in the U.S. (in 1843) and likewise the month when the transcontinental railroad was accomplished (in 1869), due largely to the labor of Chinese language immigrants.

Clearly, I’m not right here to offer a historical past lesson.

As a substitute, I’m right here to share one thing I really feel not less than reasonably certified in doing: suggestions for leisure time and escapism!

Final 12 months, I jokingly challenged my youngsters to solely watch and browse issues both written by individuals of API descent or that includes API principal characters for the entire month of Might. I actually didn’t suppose it was attainable, as a result of traditionally, we’re not nicely represented in leisure media. Spoiler alert! It was not a lot of a problem.

I used to be pleasantly shocked by what number of extra choices there at the moment are, in comparison with after I grew up, the place we had “The Pleasure Luck Membership” and “All-American Lady,” and never a lot else for the subsequent 25 years. (And you may guess I watched the whole lot I might discover — nonetheless have a delicate spot in my coronary heart for Harold & Kumar and am not ashamed to confess it.)  

So, should you’d wish to play alongside, listed here are the exhibits, films, books and companies my household and I get pleasure from that meet the problem standards above. (I’ve grouped them by fives in step with the Might theme.) My youngsters are at the moment 7 and 9.5 for reference. I’ve cut up up the media suggestions by age teams and included companies that do on-line gross sales.

AAPI Heritage Month: The Greatest TV Reveals, Films & Documentaries To Watch (All Ages)

5 AAPI Reveals & Films I Watch On Repeat + Extremely Suggest

5 AAPI Reveals & Films I Can’t Wait To Watch 

AAPI Heritage Month: Spotify Playlist

And only for enjoying together with me, here’s a link to a Spotify playlist that I’ve now spent means an excessive amount of time curating, full of some superior Asian American & Pacific Islander artists, from the mega-famous (why, howdy there, Olivia and Bruno!) and soundtrack hits to some indie darlings and worldwide faves. I believe there’s one thing for everybody on right here.

I spent too long curating this Spotify playlist for Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage month, but here it is! From Jhene Aiko to Bruno Mars To BTS.

listen to the Spotify playlist

AAPI Heritage Month: The Greatest Books For All Ages (Early Reader to Grownup)

Contemplate buying your books from Eastwind Books, a retailer I grew up with in Berkeley that was one of many first Asian American-owned bookstores within the nation! They closed their brick-and-mortar store lately, however are still doing online sales.

Image Books

“My Evening within the Planetarium” by Innosanto Nagara: We couldn’t add this into the buying widget under, however you should purchase it on backorder at Eastwind Books of Berkeley or Amazon.

Early Readers/Chapter Books

Center-Grade Books

Center-Grade & Younger Grownup Graphic Novels

Teen/Younger Grownup Books

Grownup Books

Subsequent Books On My Studying Checklist

AAPI Heritage Month: The place To Store

This 12 months, I’m going to up the ante in addition to problem myself to help not less than 5 new-to-me AAPI-owned companies and eating places. For me, that is all a enjoyable approach to uncover some gems that will not have the identical advertising and marketing/publicity assets or would in any other case not be on my radar. After which I get to share my thrilling finds with all of you! Yay!

 Umami Mart

What’s to not love about a well-curated selection of Japanese goods?

Umami Mart has a well-curated selection of Japanese goods. What's not to love?
Picture: Umami Mart

explore Umami Mart

Our Place

My daughter and I combat over Our Place’s fairly and well-designed layered lunchbox, and I can’t wait to attempt a number of the cookware items that the TME gang raves about!

AAPI-owned Our Place has some of the prettiest cookware. My daughter & I fight over the well-designed layered lunchbox.

explore Our Place | learn TME’s Most-Current Our Place Article

Eastern Classics

Final 12 months, we purchased a fantastic tansu from Eastern Classics Asian Furniture & Antiques to make use of as a dresser and LOVE IT.

Last year, we bought a beautiful tansu from Eastern Classics Asian Furniture & Antiques to use as a dresser + LOVE IT.
Picture: Jap Classics

explore Eastern Classics


OK, nice, Muji kind of sells everything, however it’s the house and workplace stuff I return to time and again! 

Asian-owned retailer Muji kind of sells everything, but it’s the home & office stuff I return to over & over again! 
Picture: Muji

explore Muji

Morningtide Shop

In case you’re ever within the East Bay, positively check out the cute Morningtide Shop with a super-thoughtful choice of items. It hosts enjoyable pop-ups too!

If you’re ever in the East Bay, definitely check out the cute Morningtide Shop w/ a super-thoughtful selection of goods.
Picture: Morningtide Store

explore Morningtide Shop

Yamazaki Home

Small-space dweller, rejoice! These Yamazaki furniture pieces are so intelligent and practical (& impressed by life in Japan).

Small-space dweller, rejoice! These Yamazaki furniture pieces are so clever & functional (& inspired by life in Japan).
Picture: Yamazaki Weblog

explore Yamazaki Home

Feed The Fish Co.

Feed the Fish Co. creates lovely, cheerful hand-cut felt and different crafts and kits! Full disclosure: Erin’s a very good pal of mine, and I really like her to items.

Feed the Fish Co. creates beautiful, cheerful hand-cut felt & other crafts + kits!
Picture: SJ Made

explore Feed the Fish Co.

Formosa Chocolates

The chocolates from Formosa are so fairly you nearly don’t wish to eat them. Nearly.

The chocolates from Formosa are so pretty you almost don’t want to eat them. Almost.
Picture: Formosa

explore Formosa Chocolates

Third Culture Bakery

Third Culture Bakery is a can’t-miss spot. Mmm…mochi muffins…the Unique taste continues to be my fave.

Third Culture Bakery is a can't-miss spot. Mmm…mochi muffins…the Original flavor is still my fave.
Picture: Third Tradition Bakery

explore Third Culture Bakery

Tea Drops

Tea Drops has so many fun teas and combos, with out the tea-bag microplastics and waste or the messiness of loose-leaf tea. Sure, please!

Tea Drops has so many fun teas & combos, without the tea-bag microplastics & waste or the messiness of loose-leaf tea.
Picture: Tea Drops

explore Tea Drops

Extra Ideas & Notes

  • Streaming platforms are proven in parentheses wherever attainable, however content material on the completely different platforms appears to vary lots, so you could wish to double-check.
  • For the non-adult classes, I’ve organized them roughly so as of youngest to oldest, based mostly on my finest guess for enjoyment and age-appropriateness. Have a look at Common Sense Media for more description and age ratings!
  • Eager about guardian/educator assets? Listed here are two superb web sites I maintain returning to:
  • Did you guys know there’s a badge on the Target app and online for the AAPI-owned companies? I needed to scroll fairly far down to seek out it this 12 months, however it was a pleasant approach to uncover new-to-me merchandise. (I’m so, so tempted to make this a public Google sheet with filters, in order that I can simply go forward and listing all of the issues. Not even kidding, not even somewhat bit.)

Back to top

Clearly, I’m solely scratching the floor with these completely different lists — it was so exhausting to slender all of it down, which is thrilling! Please inform me all of your faves within the feedback under!

And, in fact, our enjoyment and recognition of Asian American & Pacific Islander heritage and tales needn’t, and mustn’t, be confined to the month of Might. I’d like to at some point attain some extent the place studying about and celebrating one another’s heritage occurs year-round. Plus, Asia is a ginormous continent! One month can not even start to cowl tales from all these superb international locations and cultures. However for now, I’ll do what I can with what I’ve. And to the leisure execs on the market, stick with it! Let’s all say it collectively, guys: Illustration Issues!

All proper, sufficient of my jibber-jabber, go get your bubble tea, sprinkle some furikake or garam masala on that bowl of popcorn, order in some dumplings, lumpia or pho (all the above, please!), and go escape!

– Janice

It's Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month! Celebrate w/ shows, movies, books & businesses I love owned by/written by/starring people of AAPI descent. Enjoy!