Thursday, September 30, 2010

I'm ready for Halloween

In this morning I was preparing this year's Halloween story reading time.
Since tomorrow October starts, and the first reading time is --tomorrow. In October every week I do Halloween story reading somewhere.And "on time" the package arrived.

In my classes, I'm going to do cooking lessons the last week in October. The main ingredients were in the package -- later I'll up date them. And one thing is really necessary, it is difficult to get in Japan. It is candy corn.
In some picture books we see illustrations of candy corn. Actually I knew candy corn from the books. So I'm waiting for real candy corn. It is a really important gadget when I read Halloween picture books.
I didn't know that candy corn is not only one kind. There are some versions. In the bag of candy corn, there were three kinds of candy corn. Normal one, pumpkin shaped one, and the other has something black. To tell the truth, the last one looks not so good ( look like a tooth with a cavity), I tasted one of them -- I'm really surprised the taste is chocolate. not black licorice. Sorry if you are a fan of licorice.

Well did you remember, we changed the windows in the kitchen into double windows in spring. Now heater's season came. Today heater is on.
Usually when I put on heater I close the accordion curtain between the kitchen and the living room. Now I tried not to close. Not so bad, until now, one heater works to make two rooms warm. I'm not sure because of the temperature or double windows.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Apple season has come???

Now I'm OK, though I think I'm not a positive person in world-wide vision, I seem to be back to an usual positive person in Japanese version. (Sorry, just some people understand this meaning.)

As of now my life style is getting along with my delicate health, but I'll try to overcome it to spend my 50's life lively --- My Big Sister , I'll promise you, but please beg forgiveness to murmur sometimes about my health condition. I like to mumble to myself.

Well, a few weeks ago I got a bottle of Japanese pear jam, and even now it is still a season of pears in this area.

On the other hand an apple season seem to have come. Yesterday a lady brought apples saying "fresh apples in this year", and on the same day I got a package from a friend. The inside of it was apple jelly, not usual jelly a boiled whole apple wrapped apple jelly.
We enjoyed pears, apples --- autumn is a wonderful season, isn't it?
So we call autumn "autumn for eating". (Autumn has three names, autumn for reading, autumn for sports)
And in autumn seasonable foods are chestnuts, SHITAKE mushroom, grilled SUNMA (fish), ginkgo nuts, sweet potatoes and " new rice".
In this area we can enjoy " new rice", easily. Actually until I came to this area I was not interested in the taste of rice. I'm really happy to enjoy the taste of rice, especially new rice.
Let's enjoy the autumn for eating.

Monday, September 27, 2010

This week has started

Last week I was really bad, I managed to do all my work except house wife's work though. And even now I have had a headache and dizziness. It can't be helped, I have to do deal with my condition in this unstable season. It is an usual thing for me.

It is easy to omit the house chores, just I closed my eyes in the house.

But, this morning -- it was a collection day, so I put a big plastic bag in which Yuki put trash, outside. I heard something clink. Two cans were there. I opened the back and take out them. --- I need to train him more.

And this bad condition seemed to make me bad-tempered more. Though I'm seemed to be open-minded, I'm partly really stubborn. So this bad condition made me build a barrier around myself. (I hope this sentence will make sense.)

A woman said

Where is the pianist who is not playing the piano?
Where is the surgeon who cannot operate?
Why, in Japan people become an English teacher who cannot speak English well ---?
I couldn't answer it.

Well, well, I have to stop murmuring.
Anyway suddenly an autumn came, every tree started to change the color.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Halloween is next month, but our pumpkins cannot wait.

As I told you, Halloween month has started at my English school. I put the pumpkins outside. (This time I got 8 pumpkins.) The farmer said "If you don't peel them, they can keep their freshness inside for a while". How long is the meaning of "for a while"??? Even in September, it
is still hot (for these two days, it is cool or cold to me,) and my students asked "Are they OK?"
So we started to carve them.


In each class, the students I did. For the students carving a pumpkin is the activity they try once a year. For me ---- I started to feel "enough", but today --- I have three class for carving pumpkins.
This morning I washed the entrance hall, but still "pumpkin-shy".

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Karaku, Halloween-month, and garden

Yesterday, it was the day I played the piano at Karaku. I go there once a month.
There were one couple and one guest. I enjoyed playing the piano. After my performance, I also enjoyed coffee and cake which the master and his wife made.
Well, did I tell you? Now it is the season for Japanese pears, and there are many orchards of Japanese pears in this area. We can get fresh Japanese pears easily.
Master's wife made jam of Japanese pears. She gave a bin of it.

And I went to a children center to read English picture books.
Jan, can you hear (see) it?
The book caught a "big" hit.

I got home around 6 AM. I had one more lesson. Two junior high school students came. Now our "Halloween month" has started.
After one-hour lesson (usually two hour lesson), we made wreathes.

Yesterday was finished. Everything worked out.
Now Wednesday has started. I picked some leaves from the garden, SHISO, MITSUBA and green peppers. And I made breakfast.
I hope everything will work out today again.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

UN in Switzerland

Yuki went to Switzerland to attend a meeting. You can guess where he went from this photo.
This "Broken Chair" is really famous.
I've seen the pictures, though this time it is also a picture.
I know the monument has a strong message, that is "opposite to land mines and cluster bombs"
So, it is not just an modern art monument.
On the other hand, I noticed, it is "a chair". For people who don't live in Japan, chairs are usual thing in their life. Or, chairs are necessary for their life. On the other hand using chairs is an imported culture yo us. Our original culture is sitting on TATAMI (not the floor).
So one of interesting points of this monument is using a chair.
Well, well, this time, Yuki bought something for my students. It would be a good opportunity to introduce UN specifically, I thought. Partly it made it, but partly I failed.
Elementary school students said "What is UN?" --- I gave up to explain, so I said "It is your homework, please ask your parents the question."
Junior high school students said "I've heard about it ---um---- international something"
Anyway they and I got a chance to check UN.
I checked UN on the website (in Japanese), it is difficult to explain it in brief. Yuki brought a brochure but it was just a map. Why he brought something to tell us about UN in Japanese--- probably if he had found a pamphlet, it would not have been written in Japanese. Probably in English.
If someone has it, please send it to me.
This time, he didn't have something special there except cheese fondue. At the first night he said to go out to "YAKINIKU" restaurant. (Korean style grilled beef restaurant).

Saturday, September 11, 2010

the middle class, and bagels

Most of Japanese people seemed to consider ourselves to be in the middle class, but these days it's changing some people worries which class we belong to.
Of course , I know, "Live and let live".

So, some people don't mind such a tiny thing.

BUT ----

I'm one of usual people who mind outfits, rumors.
These days I sometimes think about the meaning of "the middle class".
Does it mean just our income? or our academic backgrounds????
Or, our work places?
Well, probably in my case, I'm a housewife, so "our work place" means the place where my husband works.

Last week, I went to a "small" bagel shop, it took 20 minutes from here by car. For me, it seems to be a quite a long trip, but the place belongs to this city, though it is completely in the country side.

I was driving on an "usual" road to the country side, and according to the map, I turned left, and I had to drive on a really "narrow" road, and climb up on another "narrow " road. If you know my house, you can guess the "narrow" roads were more narrow than the road in front of my house.

Suddenly a small old residential area appeared. The atmosphere of it was actually "showa". (It's difficult to express the atmosphere specifically, anyway it looked like a retro area. It reminded me of the time when I was a little girl)
And in the area there was a small bagel shop. A family (a husband and a wife and a new-born baby) owns a shop.

They sell only "bagels". Not so many. Now the shop is becoming famous via web, and by word-of-mouth. So usually all bagels get sold out in a few hours. And probably they baked some bread for some contact restaurants.
But anyway it's small.

Can they get by on their bread???

I suspected their life without reason.

The owner, a young man, was really kind, and nice. They must be enjoy their life. The baby must grow up freely and spontaneously.

On the other hand, some parents are really eager to get their kids high education.
And actually I seemed to be a kind of "grade-conscious" mother.
--- For me, it was natural, because I grow up like the way.

Now, my daughters probably got "middle" academic backgrounds. (Unfortunately or fortunately not the highest)
I thought they would be able to get by on their lives.

Of course the bagels were very delicious.
Can you see two spread-paste. One is YUKI's souvenir. It's Harrods lemon cream.
He came back safely from an oversea business trip.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Today's lesson with an adult.

From this month, a new adult came to study English with me, until now there is "one" member though .
Today, we talked about "foods" and "restaurants".
This is my short speech.
One of my favorite restaurants is "TADEN", they serve mainly grilled eels.
This summer I went there with my friend. When I go to a new restaurant, after someone recommends it to me, I usually go there. I love eels, and especially to go to eel restaurants, I'm never one of the first try to a new eel restaurant, and never judge an eel restaurant on its aesthetic appearance. Some my "senior" friends recommend the restaurant of "TADEN", so I went there.
Though I don't like stay in a restaurant where they don't separate smoking section from non-smoking section, it's depends on the situation. Some of my friends smoke, and Yuki smokes. Well, usually Yuki don't smoke in front of my family though.
And in the restaurant of "TADEN" , they have only some private rooms, so we don't mind whether other guests smoke or not. ( Of course it's another problem whether the guests with you want to smoke or not.)
I'd like to go there frequently, but it's a little bit expensive.
The restaurant where we go frequently, is probably "KIRIN", kind of a Chinese restaurant. It takes 3 minute to walk from my house. The restaurant is a kind of our "second" kitchen. When I get sick, Yuki usually go there alone. And when my daughters were here, both of them used to go there without me, and they used to take something to eat back for me.
They don't have so varieties, but they are managed by one family, and all the members of the family are really nice. To be familiar with the restaurant, it is really important to know the personalities.
If at the restaurant of TADEN, their service or quality get poor, it will be my last visit at that time without any comments. But at the restaurant of KIRIN, if we have such a surprise, we'll comment to them.

Monday, September 06, 2010

Not QP, it was a kewpie doll.

Yesterday, it was Sunday in Japan, I went out to a museum to see the exhibit of Kewpie dolls.
What I knew about Kewpie dolls until I saw the exhibition, was a QP doll as a character of Q.P. mayonnaise company.
Now I learned.
Kewpie was born as a character in a picture book written by Rose O'Neill.
The first is picture books, next is a toy of Kewpie dolls.
And she dared to name it "Kewpie" to distinguish from Cupid.
Well, anyway in Japan Q.P. corporation started to use Kewpie as their character. I don't know from when? , but anyway since I was born, I've seen Kewpie character on a tube of mayonnaise. But to tell more precisely, the Kewpie of the character doesn't have wings. To tell the truth, it was not until yesterday that I knew Kewpie had wings. And also I knew yesterday, "QP dolls " was the wrong spelling, the correct spelling was Kewpie dolls.
But it can't be helped. In 2007 Q.P. company chained their logo mark from Q.P. to Kewpie.
So for me the familiar spelling was QP dolls.

Well I'm not so crazy about adorable things, like Micky mouse, Kitty-chan, Kewpie, etc.
But -- Actually they were really adorable. And I could get more information. It was really useful time.

When I came back from the museum to the parking lot, something was holding the antenna of my car.
Can you see it? A dragonfly.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

September and --- early Halloween

This time last year Lea started to live with us, (I sometimes think back fondly on her).

One day we took her to YANA to eat AYU, on the way home coincidentally we found big Halloween pumpkins in the field. So I bought some.

The farmer said "Probably next year I'll make them".

So yesterday I check the situation to the farm "How are pumpkins this year?"
They are already "done". I couldn't bring them by myself, even though the farmer would carry them into the car.

So in the evening I went there again, of course with "YUKI".

We bought ? (it is a quiz, how many pumpkins did we buy) pumpkins. And we put two of them in the entrance.

This hot weather made them bigger quickly than last year, so some of them got orange, but some of them are still white. The pumpkins we got last year were suitable size to handle by one person or one kid. Every pumpkin this year, is really big, or too big to handle by one person.

I'm thinking how we handle them with my students.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

What's this?

Can you guess what this is? Probably even though if you don't like ----, you can eat it. (Refer to the poll above.) You can see some legs.
Yuki bought it at Tokyo station. I don't know why it is sold there, anyway it is one of souvenir of Tokyo station.

The answer is, can you read Japanese?, it's octopus-rice cracker, TAKO senbei.
It tastes salty, now sweet.

1.female sheep
2.happy dog activity
3.chicken farm product