Friday, February 25, 2011

Japan Update 5

It feels like Spring outside today! It must be at least 65! I know there is snow at home in Seattle so we are enjoying the sun! Today Takeshi's parents are working all day. We enjoyed the morning moving slow and eating breakfast with Nao and Hanna (18 months). Have I told you how cute Hanna is? I will post her picture. She is getting used to her cousins and really loves the boys. Hanna and Emmi play well most of the time. They are still too young to play together but a few times they have emptying drawers together or had tea. Emmi likes to say "Hanna, no" makes me laugh! The girls are definitely cute together, even when they make each other cry.

After breakfast we went to the shopping area and got some origami paper for Kai to take to his school and share with friends. We ate lunch at what the boys call "Japanese McDonald's". We stopped in at a nice dish store and got my mom some tea cuts. We then picked up some donuts at "Mister Donut" for later and came home for naps. Around 3 we took a nice long walk in the sun. Lots of school age children were heading home from school and Kai got to imagine what going to school in Japan might be like. We then walked to a park and played! It was nice to take off our winter coats and run around in the sun. It's good for our health and attitude! :)

I forgot to say that yesterday we visited Takeshi's grandpa who is 88 now. He lives in a rest home. It was a very nice place and all the people we saw were happy and enjoying an exercise time and then lunch together. His grandpa can't talk very well anymore but he understands what we say. I know he recognized us and understood that we came to say "Hello" and so that he could meet Emmi for the first time. It was an emotional time, especially for Takeshi. Maybe that was the last time we will see him.

I have to say something about the cooking and laundry here in Japan. There will soon be 10 people in this 3 bedroom 1 bath home. It is a well oiled and managed machine here! Takeshi's sweet mother wakes up before everyone and prepares breakfast for everyone and starts the laundry. There is no dryer, only a washing machine (and no dish washer). His mom usually has the 2 or 3 loads or laundry hanging outside by 8:30am! I'm impressed!!!!!! Even on the cold windy days the laundry drys outside. If it's really raining or snowing she drys the clothes inside with a heater. Sometimes we prepare our own food or eat out but often Takeshi's mom or sister does the cooking. I try and help but I can't find my way around the kitchen here very well. I try and wash the dishes or get the laundry in the afternoon and fold it. I'm very aware of how blessed and waste full I am in America! I'm learning a lot!

Ok, Enjoy the pictures!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Japan Update 4

Emmi's fever is gone! Praise God and thanks to the power of prayer! She still has some green snot but she is happy and back to herself. I am really holding our continued health in daily prayer! One more week here with dear family and I want health more than any new pair of jeans or yummy sushi! Hahaha!

The last two days we relaxed here at home so Emmi could fight her fever. Today was our first adventure out. We went to Costco! It was very similar to the one in America but one missing thing that I wanted so bad was the two child seat carts! Those are awesome!!! We only got a few things but it was worth the trip. Afterwards Takeshi, Emmi and I went to the Outlets. Takeshi's mom and sister took the boys home with them for the afternoon and they made paper airplanes and enjoyed each other. Takeshi and I enjoyed a little shopping with just one kid! We just got some tee-shirts but it was a relaxing time.

We rode the bus and then a train home from the outlets. Everywhere we went people were staring at Emmi! They kept saying "Oh she is so cute!" Teenage girls, little old grandmas and even a nice man on the train with and I-Phone gave Emmi a big smile! You know how Emmi loves I-Phones! By the way, I have not seen as many here as I would have thought! Most people are using the same kind of flip phone but with Internet and music capabilities.

After dinner the kids have gone straight to bed. The boys didn't nap and Emmi was out with us so everyone was tired! Takeshi is gone with his dad out to visit a book store. Today is his dad's birthday! Sunday we will have a party for all the February birthdays in the family!
I'm off to check on Noah who keeps asking for me from the top of the stairs..... Thanks for reading and miss you all!!!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Japan Update 3

Sunday afternoon around 4 we left with the kids for the train to ride it and meet 4 of Takeshi's junior high school friends at a restaurant. I was anxious about the evening since his friends don't have kids (let alone 3 of them!).
We walked through a busy shopping street to the train. It's one of my favorite places to walk. Only people go through here and there are stores with open fronts the whole mile. We got to the train and it was Noah and Emmi's first ride this time in Japan. They enjoyed it and often had to be reminded to be quiet and sit down. :)
The restaurant we ate at was owned and ran by a friend of Takeshi's who trained to be a sumo wrestler. He didn't progress in it and so decided to open a restaurant that serves the same food a sumo wrestler would eat while training! It was delicious!!!!
The kids did the best they possible could in the setting. You can see from the picture that they had a little corner to move around in and we brought a seat for Emmi. We were there a little over 2 hours and his friends enjoyed the kids and talked to them. They had good English! One of the guys there just had his divorce finalized 2 weeks ago! He was sad and i think appreciated the evening out, but also it must have been hard since he also has a 6 year old and 1 year old that now live with his wife. The owner of the restaurant isn't in any of these pictures but he is a big guy and told the boys to call him "Bob"! So funny!!!! He give the boys french fries, ice cream (after they ate their veggies). Emmi gave him a BIG hug! I have a picture of her smiling at him. For some reason she really liked him!
After dinner we started the trek home. You can see pictures of the boys waiting for the train and playing with the Japanese pay phones. We got back to Takeshi's home around 9:30pm. Emmi fell asleep in the stroller and the boys went right to bed. It was a memorable night!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Japan Update 2

It is Sunday afternoon here in Japan. This morning we had breakfast with 10 people! Nao, Masanobu, Hanna, Takeshi, me, Kai, Noah, Emmi and Takeshis parents! We all stayed together last night here at Takeshis parents home. We had toast, fruit and rice balls with Salmon covered in seaweed! It was a nice time together! Takeshis parents went over to Naos apartment to help her pack and clean while Masanobu went to work. Soon they will be moving to California!
Takeshi and I took the kids out and walked around one of the malls and then had lunch. It is cold! I think it is about 45 today outside. We came home and gave the kids a nap. Today Noah finally has taken a nap. Yeah for the little things! Tonight we are taking the kids on the train to meet one of Takeshis high school friends. We will have dinner with him. His friend really wanted us to bring the kids - but I don:t think he understands how dinner with 3 children will be! I will let you know how it goes!

Everyone is healthy! Thank you Jesus! Even my ears are feeling better today! Noah just finished his antibiotic this morning. Takeshi had a great time at his school reunion last night. He said there were 30 people that came. He got back to the house about 10:30pm. He took lots of pictures!

Across from Takeshis parents home they have taken down an apartment building and so it:s being prepared for 9 new homes. Its a perfect place for the boys to kick the soccer ball and jump rope with Jiichan. They have been outside whenever the weather lets us. Inside the house is cold accept for one room. You can imagine how active Kai and Noah like to be so sometimes it is challenging to keep them busy so that things don:t get broken in such a small room. We are making it work. Takeshis family has been understanding of the boys thankfully! Kai is eating A LOT!!!!! I think it is his usual but he is eating twice what I eat at least at breakfast for sure! Noah is being really really great about trying new foods - better than Kai and Emmi! All of them are eating good though!

Emmi just filled her diaper. :) I will update again later!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Japan Update 1

We are here safe and sound! The past 3 or 4 days has been a mix of relaxing and stress. Our plane flights went really well! The kids did great, even Emmi! She did a lot of walking in the plane and took 2 naps which helped a lot! Kai played his DS and Noah enjoyed the movies and snacks!
Jet leg has been pretty good too! Noah is my early riser and has gotten up at about 5:30 everyday. We are trying to fix that. We are really enjoying the family! Takeshis sister Nao and our niece hanna have come to visit daily so we can all be together. That is so nice!
Noah got an ear infection the second day and we had to take him to the doctor. His ear was so bad that the doctor popped his ear drum! I was so shocked! Poor Noah! Takeshi and 3 nurses had to hold him down to do it! He was in so much pain Takeshi said he was throwing up in the waiting room! He is much better now and on some antibiotics. Keep him in your prayers please that the infection continues to go away.
Family time is great! Kai got to spend almost a whole day with Takeshis mom! He loves the special attention! Noah will have his birthday here in a couple of days, he will be 4!
Emmi and Hanna are only 3 months apart and soooooo cute together! We went out in the car today with the 2 girls and they were talking to each other in the baby talk! They play tea and fight over remotes or little race cars or whatever one of them finds and the other wants! Girls!!!!! I love to see them together!
Takeshi has his elementary school reunion tomorrow! He is very excited!
It has been a busy 4 days and I:m glad we are here 2 weeks. It might take a couple more days to start to really relax after Noahs sickness.
The weather is nice but cold in the evenings. The food is AMAZING as usual! Takeshis mom is a wonderful cook! Tonight we had curry with 2 or 3 little salads. Her food is always unique and filled with veggies. Yum!
Takeshi stays up in the evenings and enjoys tea and conversation with his parents. They get along really well.
I will try and update again soon. I am off to bed!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Ready or not.... here we go!

I should have started blogging all this craziness about 4 days ago! Planning an International trip with your husband and 3 small children is quite the adventure to say the least! We did all this 2 1/2 years ago, but with only 2 kids. This time has been just a little bit more difficult with a 15 month old who wants to unpack all you are so carefully packing! Goodness Emmi!!!!!

We are leaving early in the morning for Tokyo, Japan! Somehow we got all the kids in bed by 6:30pm and even asleep!!!! We are excited and ready for the trip. I can say that now that the bags are set by the front door. 2 days ago I was a mess! Ask my sister who has had to listen to me go on and on and on about every tiny stupid detail. It's funny how your brain processes an ordeal like this. I had moments where I was talking with Takeshi and for some reason the conversation reminded me that I needed to find travel size hand sanitizers to bring on the trip! I've had papers with lists all over the kitchen. Lists of snacks for the kids, lists of medicine, of what clothes to pack, how many diapers, things to buy as gifts..... oh the lists got really out of control! :)

I'm again reminded of how God helps in even the little things! Our car battery needed to be replaced - I found that out about 4 days ago when on a cold morning it almost didn't start. Anyway, today my dad and brother helped Takeshi buy it and put it in the minivan. Emmi got sick about a week ago. Just a cold but the morning I scheduled to take her into the doctor she was REALLY sick. The doctor gave us an antibiotic to give her so that by our trip date her ears should be ok. And last but so SAD, my neighbors cat died yesterday morning and I'm happy we were still here to comfort her. She is so sad! I'm glad for God's timing! Even in the sad things.

Takeshi is calm and cool! He keeps saying "Aren't you excited?!!" I wanted to keep saying "Yes, but I have to find one more thing!" Hahaha! We have 3 big full suitcases and one McQueen carry on for the kids, OH and a stroller and diaper bag for Emmi!

We are off I hope I packed enough to keep them all happy for the 14+ hour trip! We'll see..... :) Say a prayer for safety and health! Thanks! Oh and Yes, Emmi is on our lap, not in a seat. Can you picture her..... I'm sure it will be a non-sitting trip!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Time to celebrate!

Noah and Kai got report cards from school this week!
Both boys did great and the reports were filled with positive comments!
Takeshi and I are super proud!
It's time to celebrate with ice cream tonight! The boys are excited!

Noah's teacher said "He's kind to others, shares well and has many friends"
Kai's teacher said "Kai is above average in reading, is well liked by his peers, is a leader in the class and has lots of fun ideas to share!"

I know it's just preschool and Kindergarten but still..... I'm happy they are having success in school! :)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Kai's Spelling Paper

I'm just a little proud of Kai! :)

He's doing really well in Kindergarten!

Here is a spelling paper he brought home yesterday.

He did perfect!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

At the Beach in February!

Today there was an early wake up call from Emmi.... 5:50am! Yikes! So she had an early nap at 9:30am - 11:00am. Because of her early nap it gave us some extra time after lunch to go outside and play. We decided to visit the Edmonds beach! It was cold but the sun was out! Here are a few pictures!