Spring is coming! Allegedly! Because in Calgary snow can happen as late as May or even later. These happy monsters are enjoying some cherry blossom viewing and a delicious picnic lunch. Each creature is a figure from Japanese folklore.
And here is the annotated version:
1 Kasa-obake: One-eyed, one-legged umbrella spirit
2 Chochinobake: One-eyed, tongue-protruding lantern spirit
3 Hitotsume-kozo: One-eyed bald boy
4 Tanuki: Shape-shifting raccoon dog that enjoys sake
5 Kappa: Reptilian water spirit with monk's tonsure that loves cucumbers
6 Rokurokubi: Humanoid spirit with a stretchy, serpentine neck
7 Oni: Hairy, ogre-like demon with horns, often in tiger-skin loincloth
8 Bunbuku Chagama: A tanuki that shape-shifts into a tea kettle to help a poor man
1 Mikan: Little easy-to-peel Japanese oranges
2 Kibi dango: Dumplings made from rice flour
3 Onigiri: Rice balls
4 Kappamaki: Cucumber sushi. Named for the Kappa's love of them.
5 Inarizushi: Pouch of fried tofu filled with vinegared rice
6 Anpan: Bread filled with sweet red bean paste
7 Onigiri II: Differently shaped!
8 Strawberry: Sweet treat for after lunch
Bonus: Some adorable stickers I found in a Japanese bookstore in Seattle featuring some of the same folklore critters: