Who Am I?

My name is Erin. I am 26 years old and I live in Fukui, Japan as an Assistant Language Teacher with the JET program. Before I came to Japan 3 years ago I was an art teacher living in Texas.
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I’m interested in art, singing poorly in my car, discovering new places, studying Japanese, and trying to find new ways of making my tiny apartment livable.

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I came to Japan with the goal of successfully living in a foreign country, learning more about the world, traveling, and improving my skills as a teacher. I absolutely love living in rural Japan and I use this blog as a way to document my experience for myself and others.

About Fukui


Fukui is a prefecture in the Hokuriku area of Japan. It is a small rural prefecture on the west coast of Japan directly in the middle of Honshu (Japans largest island). Fukui is about an hour and a half train ride northwest of Kyoto and about 4-5 hours south-west of Tokyo by bullet train.

The prefecture is long and thin stretched along the coast. It has a population of only 800,000 people.

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Sunset at Tojinbou cliffs in Mikuni

About this Blog

My idea for my blog came before I left Texas in 2012. I wanted to document my experience living in Japan for myself and my family.

I started writing this blog thinking I would write diary style entries about travel, and expat life like these posts on climbing into a volcano crater in Indonesia, celebrating the holidays abroad, and  visiting the perfect snowy paradise of Shirakawa-Go Japan that would probably only be interesting to myself and my mother.


However, my blog has grown over the years to include other topics as well. For example, I have written about current social issues in Japan like Racism and Sexism.

I also write posts about my life as a teacher. I write about my lesson plans, experiences working at a Japanese high school, and techniques for teaching English as a foreign language.


Feel free to follow me as I go scuba diving in Okinawa, spend sleepless nights in airports, reflect on communicating through language barriers and explore my very own backyard in Fukui.


The title of my blog, “Breathing Means More,” comes from a song called “Outlines” by the band Sleeping At Last. The lyrics of their song say,

When I breathe, from now on, I’ll mean it more than ever I did before.”

I want to appreciate each and every breath because seasons in life are short. The title of the blog helps to remind me to live in every moment and every second. I want to soak up every bit of Japan as much as possible.


You can find me on social media.

Twitter: @breathingsmore


instagram: @breathingmeansmore


5 Responses

  1. Joshua Dauphinais April 18, 2017 / 6:38 am

    I love your blog and have been looking through it for my capstone research paper. I wanted to cite you, but need your last name (a pseudonym would be fine). My study has been focused on junior high and high school students dealing with stress, depression, and suicide. While I understand this is typically more common in larger cities, it is still a topic I wanted to research thoroughly as a person who wishes to teach English in Japan after I obtain my bachelors degree.

  2. Gisele York May 28, 2017 / 1:29 am

    I would love to hear more about Japan and their culture. I would not mind going someday. But before I go, what are the rules about when you are in the public? If i searched your blog, would I find it?

  3. Jasper Malcolmson June 17, 2017 / 10:14 pm

    Erin –

    I living in San Francisco, and I want to take a trip to secluded place and swim in rivers. I came across your blog. The photographs for your blog of the river. Would it be possible to swim there. I’d really appreciate the help.

  4. Sam June 29, 2017 / 2:23 pm

    Hi Erin – just stumbled across your blog whilst feeling a little nostalgic for Fukui. I was an ALT in Ono for two years (10 years ago!) and I still often think back about my time there with great fondness. (I ended up writing ‘For Fukui’s Sake’ about my time in Japan).

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the inaka – it’s such an amazing place and I totally agree with your thoughts about why the inaka is such an interesting place to live. Natsukashiii yo!

    Keep on writing and breathing.


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