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Issho Mochi ceremony: first birthday tradition

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Issho Mochi Ceremony

Issho Mochi ceremony is one of the Japanese baby’s traditions, which is to have large round rice cake for the baby’s first birthday!

Meaning of Issho Mochi

Issho is a unit of old Japanese liquid measurement, and it is 1.8 kilograms.

Mochi means rice cake in Japanese, so Issho Mochi literary means “1.8 kg rice cake” even though one year old babies can not eat up that amount of rice cake…

Issho also means one’s entire life, so the ceremony is held to wish the baby longevity and a life without hunger.

Also the shape of Issho mochi is round, and it is said that the round shape represents peace as it does not have sharp corners so that the baby will have a peaceful life with Issho mochi!

Issho Mochi ceremony

During Issho Mochi ceremony, there is an activity for the baby. The activity varies depending on a local area.

The most famous activity is Seoi Mochi, which is to have the baby carry Issho Mochi on the baby’s back. As you could imagine some of the babies can not carry it or even can not stand since Issho Mochi is heavy for 1 year old babies. But it is OK not to carry because the main purpose of the activity is to celebrate the baby’s growth.

Some of local areas have an activity of Mochi Fumi which is to step on the rice cake to wish that the baby will have strong legs!

Seoi Mochi
Mochi Fumi

Where to buy Issho Mochi

Most of Issho Mochi shops offer home delivery, so usually Issho Mochi is bought online and delivered to the house.

Issho Bread

There is an Issho Bread instead of Issho Mochi because Issho Bread is easy to share for the family. Indeed, we had Issho bread for our child’s first birthday!

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