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TMG Mums Spotlight - Katie Sudo

It's May the 1st 2019 in Japan and that means it's the start of the Reiwa - a new Era with a new Emperor!  What a great time for our next TMG Mums Spotlight entry!

Today, we interview Katie Sudo, one of the driving forces behind the fantastic Roppongi Cooperatve - a great meeting spot/playgroup for parents in Tokyo.  


1. In one sentence, how would your closest friends describe you?

“You seek the good in every situation, have contagious positivity, stand up for yourself, are passionate and kind and selfless”. I’m quoting here! A friend recently told me of my “superpowers” while doing an exercise for her business school program. It left me stunned, reflective, and very grateful to be around such uplifting people.


2. What is your family weekend ritual?

Saturday mornings before my kids wake up, I slip out the door to teach. After class, I usually treat myself to lunch then meet up with my family in one of our neighborhood pocket parks. Sundays my husband makes eggs or pancakes, and we either take the kids to Komabapark or wander around Shimokitazawa. No trains or buses on Sundays. We keep it local.


3. What’s your no.1 top trick for getting through a hard Mum day?

Meiji chocolate covered almonds.


4. What gets you up each day?

My alarm. My days go smoother if I can shower, have my first cup of tea and listen to a podcast before anybody else is awake. My husband has always worked long hours and I’ve always enjoyed having my own time- reading books in cafes, window shopping, doing osampo after work- so it’s hard to have people (especially the kiddos) around me all the time. One hour by myself in the morning makes a huge difference.


5. What keeps you up at night?

Emails. Project planning. On the days I don’t fall asleep on the futon with my kids, that is. All day I brainstorm, get inspiration, and try to find a moment to scribble it down or type it up before I forget and it floats away.


6. How has TMG helped you?

TMG gives me on the ground, live, immediate, local information. Seriously- it’s a news source for me. How’re the crowds at the museum today? Did you hear this train is delayed? If you go to this exhibition, there’s a changing table on the third floor bathroom. Many things seem trivial unless you have a child in tow. And TMG members get that and are always willing to provide tips and info.


7. What challenges or benefits do you face being a parent in Tokyo?

So many places to go, people to see, things to do- all without a car! As much as I hate a Shibuya transfer with a stroller, nothing beats the cityscape from a JR line. I haven’t been behind the wheel in over a decade. I’m raising my kids to be train otaku!


8. Anything else you'd like to share...

Tokyo is an amazing city which attracts so many interesting, energetic, and diverse people and those of us in the international community have such varied and serendipitous circumstances for being here. Everything and nothing seems “normal” about raising a child, so raising my kids in the international community feels very freeing because each family’s standard is so different. We are piecing together our family and our story and surrounding ourselves by people who make us feel good and valued. Thanks to TMG for helping us all connect!


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