Let’s Learn Japanese With Anime (あたしンち EP 37 New Year’s Day)

Language Learning (Japanese)

腹減ったな、雑煮食うか (Hara hettana Zouni kuuka)

“I’m hungry, let’s eat Zouni”. 雑煮 (Zouni) is traditional Japanese New Year’s food.


Hello, everyone! Are you ready to have some fun learning real-life Japanese with one of the most hilarious anime 『あたしンち』?

In this post, you will practice and improve your listening comprehension and speaking skills, using MY favorite anime 『あたしンち』, to learn to understand native Japanese without subtitles.

I will teach you how native Japanese speakers really speak, with dynamic Japanese lessons, full of humor, and real-life examples of vocabulary, cultural diversity, and grammar.

Today’s episode is all about “New Year’s Day”. As you are aware that Japanese culture is completely different from yours and it may confuse you if you are not familiar with the Japanese culture. Let’s learn some Japanese culture and useful vocabulary!




Let’s Watch 『あたしンち』Without Subtitles

Before you watch the episode, I want you to learn a little bit about『あたしンち』from the link below since it helps you understand what you are about to watch.

➡ Let’s Study Japanese with Anime – あたしンち (EP 292)

Now, I want you to watch the episode (New Year’s Day) once without subtitles if you are intermediate or above. If you can understand more than 50% of the content without subtitles, your listening comprehension will improve drastically by watching it without subtitles.

If you are a beginner, you can watch it with the English subtitles first to have a clear understanding of what this episode is about. However, I just want you to use the subtitles only once because reading the English subtitles won’t help you improve your listening skills.

Once you understand the content of it, either watch it again with no subtitles or move to the next step to learn new vocabulary and phrases.



Let’s Learn Some Japanese Words and Phrases

Here, I will teach you useful Japanese words and phrases from『あたしンち』.

I will divide the video into 8 sections since the video is 8 minutes long excluding the opening and ending songs. So, you can come back to the video and check as you learn new words.



「明けましておめでとうございます」(Akemashite omedetou gozaimasu)

“Happy New Year”

あけましてBeing open
おめでとうございますWish you something


「明けましておめでとうございます」is short for「新年明けましておめでとうございます」. 新年 (Shin nen) means “New Year” and therefore, 「新年明けまして」means “The New Year is open”.

「ございます」is often added to make it sound more polite. You could say 「あけましておめでとう」to your friends and family if you want it to be more casual and friendly.

For example, the phrase “Thank you”「ありがとう」 in a polite way is「ありがとうございます」.

Also, Japanese people like to shorten words. The young generation often say「あけおめことよろ」which is short for「あけましておめでとうございます。ことしもよろしくおねがいします」


「腹減ったなぁ、雑煮食うか」(Hara hettana Zouni kuuka)

“I’m hungry, let’s eat Zouni”

はらへったなぁI am hungry
ぞうにTraditional Japanese New Year’s food
くうかLet’s eat


Although the Japanese translation for this sentence is “I’m hungry, let’s eat Zouni”, you wouldn’t want to say it this way. This is said by 父 (father) and it sounds very manly and a bit old, so if you’re a female or young person, you may be better saying「お腹すいた、雑煮食べよう」(おなかすいた、ぞうにたべよう, Onaka suita, Zouni tabeyou). It is more applicable to all Japanese learners.

お雑煮 is the one in the picture above and is a soup containing Mochi rice cake, often eaten on New Year’s Day in Japan.

New Year’s Day is called お正月 (Oshogatsu or Gantan). Family and relatives usually gather to ring in the new year to celebrate. お正月 is considered the most important holiday in Japan.


「大きくなったわね~。この間生まれたばっかりだと思ってたのに」(Okikunattawane. Konoaida umareta bakkari dato omotte tanoni)

“She’s grown so much. I thought she was just born a while ago”

おおきくなったわね~It has grown big
うまれたばっかりだとWas just born
おもってたのにI was thinking


We, Japanese often use the word “big”「大きい」for mentioning the growth of children instead of “tall”「背が高い」.

This sentence sounds a bit too much of mom. You may say 「大きくなったね。この前生まれたばっかりだと思ってたのに」(Okikunattane. Konomae umareta bakkari dato omottetanoni). Men do not say「わね」. It sounds very girly and a bit old.



「今年も山川一郎さんから年賀状が来てるわよ~」(Kotoshimo Yamakawa Ichiro-San kara Nengajo ga kiteruwayo)

“You got Nengajo from Yamakawa Ichiro this year too”

ことし (も)This year (too)
ねんがじょうNew Year greeting cards
きてるhas arrived


年賀状 (ねんがじょう) is New Yea’s greeting cards that Japanese people often receive from their friends and colleagues on New Year’s Day to show their appreciation. It is quite similar to holiday cards and postcards but they are only sent for New Year’s Day.

Therefore, Japanese Post on New Year’s Day is usually the busiest day of the year that they work all day to deliver 年賀状 before January 2nd.

However, these days 年賀状 are only sent by elderly people since the young generation has accustomed to greeting “Happy New Year” on their phones. It is sad but I have not sent any 年賀状 since I was 14.


「この人、誰だっけ」(Konohito dare dakke)

“Who is this person, I have forgotten”

このひとThis person
だれだっけI forgot who this is


「お互いにやめるタイミングを逃した」(Otagaini yameru taimingu wo nogasita)

“We missed the right timing to stop sending Nengajo”

おたがいにWe both (Usually two people)
やめるQuit, Stop


In this scene, you can see the very common Japanese aspect of “missing the right timing to stop something”. As I explained above that 年賀状 is getting obsolete and “New Year’s greeting” has been done via e-mails and texts by even older generations.

Here, 父 wants to stop sending 年賀状 already, however, they don’t know when to stop sending since it’s their tradition to do so.

「タイミングを逃す」is commonly used when you miss the chance to apologize or propose to someone.

For example,「謝るタイミングを逃した」(Ayamaru taimingu wo nogashita) means “I missed my chance to apologize”.

「お昼ご飯を食べるタイミングを逃した」(Ohiru gohan wo taberu taimingu wo nogashita) means “I missed my chance to eat lunch”.



「あけましておめでとう。初日の出だぜ」(Akemashite omedetou. Hatsuhinode daze)

“Happy New Year. This is the New Year’s sunrise”

はつひのでThe first sunrise of the New Year


初日の出 is an important tradition seen by waking up early or staying awake on New Year’s Day to witness the first sunrise.

Japanese people believe that great fortune will come by gazing at the first sunrise of the new year. Therefore, you see a lot of people climbing up the mountains on New Year’s Day.


「明けましておめでとう。今年もよろしくね!きもの着ちゃった」(Akemashite omedetou. Kotoshimo yoroshikune! Kimono kichatta)

“Happy New Year. I am looking forward to another good year with you! I’m wearing Kimono”

ことしも (よろしく)This year too (please)
きものJapanese traditional garment and the national dress of Japan
きるWear something


It is common to say 「今年もよろしくお願いします」after「明けましておめでとう」in Japan. Apparently, there are no such translations in English for 「今年もよろしくお願いします」, but it means “I am looking forward to having a great year with you this year too” king of things.

It also is a traditional thing to wear Kimono on New Year’s Day in Japan to celebrate, especially, for women.


「今年は頑張って、ママとおせちを作ったよ~」(Kotoshi wa ganbatte mama to osechi wo tsukuttayo)

“I made an effort to make Osechi this year with my mom”

がんばってMake an effort to do something
ままとWith my mom
おせちJapanese traditional New Year’s foods
つくるMake something


おせち料理 (Osechi Ryori) or おせち are traditional Japanese New Year’s foods. お雑煮 is part of おせち and usually served together with おせち.

おせち is usually served in special boxes called 重箱 (Jubako) as みかん mentioned in the episode (she said お重 (ojuu) the same meaning), and each dish has a special meaning celebrating New Year.

In this episode, 母 made it a buffet style, however, it is usually served in the 重箱.



「おせちバイキングはバラエティ豊富なのよ!」(Osechi baikingu wa baraeti houfu nanoyo)

“The Osechi buffet has a variety of foods”

ほうふPlenty, A lot of


Japanese often refer to “A buffet” as「バッフェ」or「バイキング」. 「バッフェ」is literally comes from the word “buffet”. However, 「バイキング」derives from the name of the first “All you can eat restaurant” in Japan.


「もっと、ちゃんとしないといけないんじゃない!?」(Motto, chanto shinaito ikenainjanai!?)

“I think we should make more efforts for New Year’s Day, right!?”

ちゃんとするDo better, Make an effort


Here, みかん is suggesting that her family should do something special for the most special day of the year after seeing her friends going to see 初日の出 and wearing きもの while her family doing absolutely nothing.

父 says to みかん that 「テレビの見過ぎだな」(Terebi no misugidana) “You’ve watched too much TV”. As well as 母 continues「現実はテレビの前でみんなパジャマよ」(Genjitsuwa terebi nomaede minna pajamayo) “In reality, everyone watches tv in their pajamas”.

While it is true that many people just choose to chill and do absolutely nothing but watch tv on New Year’s Day and the following days until they go back to work, there are some people who like to do special things.

The majority of people, in my opinion, go to the shrine the first thing in the morning, then go back to being lazy until the holiday ends.



「家族同士でそんなに改まったことしなくていいじゃない」(Kazokudoushide sonnani aratamattakoto shinakute iijanai)

“We don’t have to do such things. We’re family”

かぞくどうしIn family
あらたまったことFormal things
しなくていいDon’t have to


母 is opposed to みかん that they are family so that they don’t need to do the traditional Japanese New Year’s celebration which is saying 「明けましておめでとうございます」.


「よそは普通にちゃんとしてるみたいだよ」(Yosowa futsuni chanto shiteru mitaidayo)

“It seems many people do it as usual”

よそはOther people
ふつうにAs usual
みたいだよIt seems like


「よそ」means “other people”, and you would often hear Japanese people say it. However, I don’t think you need to remember for using it. It probably is an old Japanese in my opinion.



「みかんが言いだしっぺでしょ」(Mikan ga iidashippe desyo)

“Mikan is the one who brought it up”

いいだしっぺThe person who said it first


「言い出しっぺ」is a Japanese term used for someone who brought it up.

“You said it first, you should do it”「言い出しっぺはあなたでしょ、ちゃんとやってね」

“Who said it first? Wasn’t it you?”「言い出しっぺは誰だっけ? 君じゃなかった?」


「いいから、ほら」(Iikara, hora)

“It doesn’t matter, just do it”

いいからIt doesn’t matter. It’s okay
ほらLook. See.


This sentence is probably short for 「いいからごちゃごちゃ言ってないで、ほら早くやって」which means “Hey, stop complaining and just do it quickly”.

Japanese people like to shorten things like Australian people, ad that is why spoken Japanese is difficult to hear.



「やれやれ」is an expression, often used when someone is relived from something in a stressful situation.



「なんか締まらないな」(Nanka shimaranaina)

“It doesn’t seem right to end this way”

なんかMmm, something
しまらないIt doesn’t end well


「締りが悪い」「締りがない」is commonly used expression when things don’t end well.

For example, you had a barbeque and everything was going well. But it started raining towards the end of the barbeque, you could probably say「締りのないバーベキューになったね」(Shimarino nai babequ ni nattane).


「はい、お年玉」(Hai, otoshidama)

“There you go, your cash gift”

お年玉の「無駄遣いはダメ」と言うのはNGだ | 子育て | 東洋経済オンライン | 社会をよくする経済ニュース

お年玉 (Otoshidama) is a Japanese traditional gift where money is given to children by their parents or aunt and uncles on New Year’s Day. Money is usually concealed in the envelope like those in the picture above.

If some children get a lot of money on this day if they are born in a big family and have many relatives. Usually, children get around ¥5,000~¥30,000 depending on the generosity of the family.

As the children get older, the お年玉 givers stop giving out money. My last お年玉 was when I was 19. I believe Japanese children tend to receive お年玉 until they are 20 years old.



っぽいIt is like ~


「~っぽい」means “something looks or seems like something else”.

For example, 「その服、ナルトっぽいね」(Sono fuku Narutoppoine) means “Your clothes are like Naruto’s”.

「今日は夏っぽいね」(Kyouwa natsuppoine) means “Today is like summer”.



Watch It Again

Now, you have learned some new Japanese words and phrases, let’s see how they are actually used in『あたしンち』. This step is very crucial for you to remember the new words in the right way.

If you still have difficulty understanding this episode, please feel free to go back to step 2 and learn the new words again!


I hope you liked today’s lesson. If you did, please keep on learning Japanese with『あたしンち』below.

➡ Let’s Study Japanese with Anime – あたしンち (EP 292)

➡ Let’s Study Japanese with Anime – あたしンち(Shopping )

Let me know what you think about my post in the comment below or you can reach out to me on my Twitter account. Thank you!