Friday, April 27, 2007

pea rice

Today's OBNETOU's (lunch box) main dish is pea rice. I got fresh coffee beans. I cooked rice with the peas, Komu (kelp), Sake(Japanese alcohol) and a little bit salt.

It looks dericious, and It makes us feel fresh green season of May.

But I covered the rice with scrambled egg, because my daughter doesn't like peas. Usually she eats toast and rice for breakfast. Today I only served toast and salada without saying anything.

So she didn't notice today's main dish.

Probably as soon as she will put the rice with the egg, she must notice there will be some peas. It can't helped. She has to eat. BUT she must chose out all peas and put them in the corner of the lunch box.

Anway I made the first seasonalbe dish. I'm satisfied.

During the golden week, I'm going to make bamboo shoot rice. Bamboo shotts, the members of my familly all like them. We are going to go to cut? pick? some bamboo shoots to the farm nearby.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

try to spend holidays frugally

From next week we have one week holidays in a row, it is called golden week. It is reported that many people go abroad , but my family is completely in another world.
Early in April, I was ready for meeting big expenses; college expenses, high school expenses, and allowance to my elder daughter.
And later in April, I have to meet another expenses; property tax, car tax, car safety inspection, and gardening expences.
You may be surprised to hearing gardening expences.
Though we have a small garden it is hedged. This season I ask a gardenr to clip a hedge.
It is too tall to do by my husband.

Well, I feel empty. I try to save money as much as I can (though sometimes I suddely buy something for me), but money fries like an arrow?????. (Do you know some good humor??)

The first half of the golden week, my mother is going to come. So probably she'll treat something -- Thanks mom.
In the middle of it, we stay at home, so try to live frugally, it means I'm going to busy in housechores.
The later half of it, we are going to meet my mother-in-low to Tokyo, and we are also meet our elder daugter. So probably money is also going to fly like an arrow, because since she lived separately, we are too easy with her.

--Big sigh----

Monday, April 23, 2007

Toast Master's club

I attend a meeting of Toast master's club in Utsunomiya. Do you know Toast master's club? It's a kind of speech club. There are only 5 members in the club in Utsunomiya including me.
Yesterday I made a speech for the first time. ( It was the second time that I attened this meeting.) I introduced my self. (Thanks Jan, I did well.)
And every member made a short speech about three topics.
A woman and I were new membes, so these topics were selected.
your personality, your hometown, and how to spend holidays.

What I told was like that
The words my friends mention to discribe me are probably, active and positive, though I think I'm shy and not out going. But I like to look for something intereseting and inspiring. And I also like to tell those intereseting to someone proudly, so the word of "positive" seemes to describe me.
My home town is Tokyo. I was born and grew up in Tokyo. But since I came here more than 20 years passed. And it has been longer to live here than in Tokyo. So I seem to adjust the life in Tochigi more than in Tokyo. Anyway I can say the second hometown is Tochigi.
And the way to spend holidays, when my daughter doesn't go clam school, anyway I can get up lately. Then I clean the rooms, I clean the rooms upstaris once a week. and I try to weed. After the noon, I go out to attend a meeting like this, or go to the library. And usually at evening I go shopping with my husband, mainly to buy alcoholic. I try to spend holidays calmly.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

homemade KAKIAGE

Do you remember I planted some seedlings of vegetables. Yesterday I reaped MIZUNA, and I made these KAKIAGE, they are kind of vegetable Tenpura.

My family said "Yummy, Great".

BUT I fried too much KAKIAGE, so they left. I reaped too much, MOTTAINAI (wasteful) , I should have cooked MIZUNA not only one way but also other ways.

Now the roots of MIZUNA are still left, so probably in a few weeks, I will be able to reap MIZUNA again. Reaping is fun, isn't it?

Friday, April 20, 2007

glove theater

Yesterday I went to a nursery school to read English picture books to kis. This time I told a story using this glove. Amon nursery or kindergarten teachters such shows are called "TEBUKURO SHIATA". "Tebukuro" means glove, and "Shiata" means theater.

I got this glove from a nursery teacher, usually she tells a Japanese story. I translated the stroy in English.

The story is like that;

Who love carrots? I loe carrots. (A horse comes.)

Do you like this carrot Mr. Horse? Here you are!

Munch, munch,munch, yummy!

Who loves this big carrot? I love it. (a elephant comes)

Do you like this big carrot Mr. elepaht? Here you are!
Munch, munch, munch, yummy!

The final phrase is

let's eat carrots everyboday and grow up big and strong!

It was fun.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

dessert croquette

This is a croquette, I bought these frozen croquettes, and this morning deep fried and put 2 of them into my daughter's lunch box.
Usually in Japan croquetes are made by potato, ground meat and onion. And I sometimes use cirbed beef ubstead if ground meat.
But What are inside of these croquettes? Sweet potatoes and strawberry jam. So they are a little bit sweet, though they are not used suger.
There other two types, apple one and chestnuts one. How do they taste? I'm intereseted in them. and I also intereseted in my daughter's saying after coming home.
Do you like croquettes?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

What kinds of medicine do you keep at home?

I make a deal "Toyama no okigusuri". It is tye system of stock of medicien at home. Ever two or three months a sells clerk (I think he or she is not a pharmacist) comes to check wich medicine we used. And we pay as much as we used, though we seldeom use any medicine. And the clerk also check the date of each medicine , if some medicines are over the valid months, they are changed to fresh (sounds strange? how do I describe? new?) ones.
So we can keep verious new medicines irrespective of costs; like medicines for headache, diarrhea, and stomachache, and painkillers, eyelotion, Band-aid, and even compress.

On the other hand these days my husband and I started to take some supplements. I'll show you. We take propolice and homemade yoghurt. My husband takes black vinegar, and I take another vinegar, that is called "moromi-su", and nomi juice. And a few days ago we found this special juice "shikuwasa" juice. It is a kind of orange, but more sour and astringent. It is said to have 100 times citric acid as much as normal orange juice.
I have a question, what kinds of supplements do you usually take?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

We are into ---

In the morning, my husband usually drinks coffee, I drink green tea, and my daugher drinks cold milk. My daughter seldom drinks somthing hot. BUT these days she into this maple tea. It is not naple syrup. The smell and taste is maple.
We often have maple, but having maple tea is the first time. Delicious!

And my husband usually eats toast for breakfast. I do , too. And my daughter eats rice and toast, both. How healthy she is! And these days suger toast is one of our favorite types of toast. Once I tryed another maker's suger toast cream, but it was not good. This cuger toast cream by SONTON is really good, if you find it please try it.

Well, other our favorite types of toast are egg toast and fresh cream toast.
What types of toast do you like?

Monday, April 16, 2007


These are boild octopuses. The other day my husband went to Koube on usiness. Koube is famous for Akashi Tako; you see the sign on the wrapping paper in this photo, even it is written in Japanese. Akashi is a town in Koube, tako is octopus. Yummy!
We sometimes accept some foreigners staying with us because we are resistered as a host family. Probably octopuses one of the most unusual foods for them. For Japanese or us (my husband and me) we don't have a big difference between squids and octopuses, but for foreigners it seemsto have a big difference.
Takoyaki is also famous in Japana as a healthy? snack. It is my daughter's favorite, so when young foreigners come to my house I make sausage-yaki instead of tako-yaki. It is a kind of small unsweetened pancake.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

in the middle of spring

Now in my small garden even though it is in the half shade, flowers are in full bloom. And NIRA(leek) that I sowed , has come up. AND of course weeds has appeared.

I decided to try to weed constantly. So this morning before watering I did 15-minute-weeding. My garden is small, and we don't have lots of weeds yet, so 15-mitnie-weeding worked well.
I also platned seedling of strawberries. They put buds. If they have a fruit, I can put them in my daughter's luch box, the red strawgerry will make the OBENTOU look vivid. How many strawberries can I get???

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

horsetail quiche

Yesterday I played the piano at KARAKU. And the master gave this "horsetail quiche" to my family. Do you know "horsetail"? It is a plant in spring. When I was a kid I used to find them here and there but these days we couldn't. His wife went to pick them to the outskirts, and make this quiche. They bring spirng taste don't they?
Well, the picture of horsetail(TSUKUSHI) was gotten from the page

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

eel pie

These are sweets, and the sign on them is "eel pie" in English.
What is eel pie? Do they look like eels? No, they have eel in powder, so they are called "eel pie". And they have the adjective of "for night". Why? having eels is said to give us stamina and eels are used for tomic medicines.
These sweetsa are peculiarity of SHIZOKA. Lots of eels are cultivated in SHIZUOKA.
In my region we have the same shaped pie. It is called "KANPYOU pie". they have KANPYOU in powder. KANPYOU is a kind of vegetables. So the sweets don't have an adjective. If they had something modified, they would be called "healthy KANPYOU pie".

Monday, April 09, 2007

My usual belongings

What do you usual take when you go out nearby? A wallet, a brush, a handkerchief, a lipcream stick, and a paper book (I sometimes drop at a coffe shop to take a rest out of mere freak or to kill the time during my husband or daughter's shopping) , they are my usual belongings.

And I wanted to a new bag for them, so I asked my friend to sew a bag, and it comes. To be correctly she maked two bags.

I like her works. She like and is good at sewing. When she gets order something, she makes them. On the other hand she opend her oridinal shop on the net. Since it opend, almost one year has passed.

These days net-shopping seems to have lots of problems, but for her, this net-shopping is an effective and inspriering way to enjoy our 40's life.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

going out to see the cherry blossoms

In this morning we (my husband, my daughter and I) went out to see the cherry blossomes to the park nearby. When my daughters were little, my family used to go there on Sundays. Probably more than 8 years passed since we went there together last.

I heard the park had remodeled, and it was the first time for my husband and me to visit since it was remodeled. It was completely changed. Everything was renewed and seemed to get more attractive for kids.

My husband and I have a lot of memories of playing kids in this park. But unfortunatley my daughter didn't have any those memories. Her memories about this park was playing there with her friends.

The most attractive ride in this park was a big slide, though they don't have it now. We went to the place where the slide was. At that time for us it was so far to reach there from the entrance of the park. But this time it was just a 10-minute-walk.

It means my daughter grew up enough, and missing such memories shows that my husband and I aged.

On the way home we dropped by at a restaurant and had spaghetti for holiday brunch.

We had a good time in this morning, if my elder daughter were together, we could have enjoyed more. So tonight I called her, she is fine. This term she is going to deal with metal. What is she going to make?

Thursday, April 05, 2007

My daughter's school has started.

I was able to wake up before 6 o'clock this morning. And I made OBENTOU.

From today my daughter's school has started, it means the chore of making OBENTOU has also started.

When was the first time to make OBENTOU by myself? Probably I was a college student. At that time my mother used to make four OBENTOUs every morning, for my father, for my two younger brothers, and me. Except mine, they are all for men. So the OBENTOUs were highly volumed (or it could be said to be much oily.) I couldn't bear, so I started to make OBENTOU for myself.

I continued to make OBENTOU when I started working. I took my OBENTOU to my office. And after my daughters were born, I had to let them thier OBENTOUs to their nursery school.

When they were elementary school kids, this chore stopped.

But when they became junior hirh school students, this chore had started again.

And probably this year it is the last year to do this chore (if my younger daughter succeed in entering a college.) So this last year I'll try to enjoy this chore instead of feeling troublesom.

I show every day's OBENTOU in another blog page, if you are intereseted in them, please see them. Mieko's luncbox

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

What's this? It's an excellent spoon.

The left picture is the situation of being out of use, and the right picture is the situation of being in use.
Yes it is a spoon to scoop a does of medicines.
These days I changed medicine for a pollen allergy into herbal medicine. I have to take 12 pills at once. I said to a pharmacist "It's terrible troublesom". She said "it has somthing excellent."
And showed this spoon.
in one scoop I take 12 pills at once. So in two scoops I can take necessary doses.
All members of my family were surprised and laughed.
What do you think of this idea?

Monday, April 02, 2007

What medicine do you bring with you when you travel?

My spring vacataion finished. During the vacation I went out here and there , though they were not long travels. BUT I always bring headache specific and pills for a pollen allergy. Now I'm suffering from a bad pollen allergy, so with this medicine I bring eye lotion. And I suffer from headaches, so with caution I always bring the medice with me.
The headache specific is precribed, I don't buy this kind of medicine at drugstores.

"Allergy" reminds me of a woman who stayed with us.
Has anyone you know ever gotten sick while traveling? The woman who stayed with us got sick at my house.
When a guest comes to stay with us, I usually send the person our family sheet to introduce our family. At that time we had a cat (unfortunately she passed away.) So I wrote on the paper "we had a cat".
And the guest used to have a cat allergy, but she thought she had already overcome.

BUT unfortunatley at midnight suddenly the allergy attacked her. She started sneezeing and runnig nose, and her eyes got completely red. She didn't have medicine, and it was midnight. So I gave her my pills for allergy, because the symptoms were same.

Fortunatly it worked well.

Oops, I almost forget to write one thing.
If I went on a long travel, I'll bring more two kinds of medicne, they are laxative and binding medicine.

Well, I don't know what do you call these medicine in English? Please tell me.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

who drew?

Neither of my daughters, I did. The other day I added a craft work-shop in TOKYO. There I drew this picture. Of cours they are strawberries.

Can you buess how I drew it.

I used color chalks and used cotton instead of paint burshes.

rub the chalks with the cotton, and put the color on the paper with the cotton.

To draw detail or clear the outline I used a cotton swab.

To draw somethng white (like petals) I used an eraswer.

It was really intereseting.

This drawing way seems to be common on Steiner's education.

Did you know that?

Using this way everybody becomes a great artist.

I recommend you to try it.