Monday, November 30, 2015

6 guests from 6 countries.

The biggest event of this year for me was finished with big success.
Once a year Utsunoniya City International Association holds a event "let's read picture books in foreign countries together".
It is the seventh time event. I'm really happy to join it this year again.
This time 6 people who are from Italy, German, Syria, Philippines, Kirghiz, and Costa Rica joined it.
Of course they live in Utsunomiya. I always surprised that even in this small town some  people come and live from foreign countries and the countries are really various.
This time I supported a lady from Philippines. Philippines have two official languages, Tagalog and English. I supported her speaking in English.
It was fun.
Many people and kids joined us.

I participated in this event as a volunteer. But it's really good. Though the spread-over is long, it's almost all day, lunch is served (not so bad) and after the main event we have a small tea party and I get 1000 yen for a transportation cost.
I bought this book from my wallet, so I payed more than I received.
However it's OK, all participants did that, they cooked something, they printed photos in large size --etc. All participants are volunteers including the guests. It was fun.
This Japan, of course. I try to listen to world news every day. However it's Japan, it's isolated.
Yesterday at the party I talked with a lady from Syria and German. For them  the issue of refugee and religion is a "real" topic.
I know my English skill is not so good, however moreover I have nothing to talk to them. What I could was just listening to their conversation.
She came as a government sponsored foreign student 5 years ago, now she has studied as a self supporting international student. Her parents took refuge to German, now she has no house in Syria
The man from German showed his complicated feeling frankly.
I was very surprised. --- This is what I can say now.

Friday, November 27, 2015

This week

If you are American, you celebrate Thanks giving day.
Last weekend, we had three days-off in a row. It is Labor Thanks Giving day on November 23, though we don't do anything special, just it's a holiday.
HOWEVER, it was a three-day weekend. It means --
Yes, Akari came. To tell the truth, during the weekend she spend her another grandmother, and came here to spend me for "usual days".
So I tried to do usual things.
We decorate Christmas ornaments.

I took her to a nursery school, -- it was a day for my volunteering.
I read English picture books for kids of the nursery school,and Akari could join them.
And --- after "my" volunteering work, we dropped by a restaurant which accepts babies. (In Japan some restaurants (which are my favorite) don't accept babies, (it's a reason why they are my favorites).
This is "her " lunch.
First I was going to share it with Akari, but she ate up all except pickles.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Yogurt&cheese cake

Do you remember? I make homemade yogurt at home and have it for our breakfast.
However it's fall, so I don't like to eat something cold though Yuki doesn't matter.
These days I didn't serve my yogurt, and it is left--- what a waste!
So I searched for some good ideas on the Internet. How useful the Internet is!
I drained yogurt, it took a day.--- and according to the recipe I found , it is the most important process.
And I add cream cheese, granulated sugar (it is the second important point)
and bake it with water in the oven. (puting water in the pan is the third important point.)

Perfect breakfast.
This yogurt& cheese cake can be kept for about four days in the fridge.
So I got another menu of "appetizer for a week"

Today it is the last weekday. It's a long day for me, I have lessons until 10 o'clock.
I'll do my best and enjoy the day with students.

Sunday, November 15, 2015


Today it's Sunday. Now it's around 5 PM. Yuki doesn't come back yet from golfing.
Today in the morning I went to the library and did a volunteer work of reading English picture books.
At first there was only a girl in the room, she came back earlier than starting time and was looking forward to listening to my story.
I thought that I could read books for only this girl.
However, after the announce, some parents and their kids come, so thankfully the room was full of people. I was so happy.

Well, after the event, ever one left except me. I felt a little bit lonely-- it can't be helped.
15 years ago ( I started this volunteer work at that time), I used to do such activities with my daughters. So such volunteer works were a kind of "family events".
Now I do by myself. (Sometimes my friends or the member of my reading club join me, however, today no one came)
Anyway, after that I went to a cafe and had lunch own.
Well, well, sometimes it's lonely to have lunch alone especially on Sundays. So I need to chose a cafe cautiously.

I chose one cafe -- there were "many" women or men who seem to be in our generation or elder than me alone to have lunch like me.
so I didn't feel alone.
Everybody enjoyed their own time there.
Then I received acupuncture. Did I tell you, these days  I'm into moxibusion. I learned pressure points from the pratitioner of acupuncture. I got about one and a half your treatment.
Then I got home, and cooked appetite for this week.        

Please notice the bottle. I made "vinegar-onion" requested by Yuki.
Now it's a little bit featured for keeping us healthy.
Do you know vinegar-onion.
Slice three onions and leave them about 15 minutes. Don't put them in the water.
Prepare a jar. and put 500ml vinegar and add 5 table spoon of honey.
And soak the onions into them.
You don't need any oil.
If you are interested in it, why don't you try it?

P.S good morning. I add some vinegar-onion to potatoes which is just dimpled boiled with mayonnaise and pickles.


Friday, November 13, 2015

Apple cider

Now it's a season for apples. Here in Tochigi we have som apple orchards. so we can get applese easily with resonable price.
Yesterday I read this book for kids and share apple cider. (Thanks Jan.)
Apple cider is not familier in Japan, however, apple pie, apple muffin, and so on are very very popular.
Do you drink Apple cider?
I found this page.
It's really interesting. I'll try. (And if I try doing it, I'll report it.)

Thursday, November 12, 2015

In the middle of fall

Last Tuesday it was a day for me as a pianist. I played the piano, and applied some tunes along  some poems which were read by Ukai-san. Ukai-san is a professional actress.
I'm lucky to do something with her.
This is not a job, but it's a lucky thing to get a chance to play the piano  in public.
After the performance I enjoyed this tea-set.


Yesterday I got this basil sauce. My friend made it from fresh basil in her garden.
To tell the truth, these days I don't like spaghetti very much.
Well, well, here in Japan basil spaghetti is very popular.
She recommended to use it with toast though French bread is popular to eat with bail sauce in Japan.
I tried. The bread is soft but it's not crunch. However it was tasty.

Just one strange thing is that --- simmered with vegetables with soy sauce taste didn't suit to the bread with basil.

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Haiku at mamada shrine

Today, though it was raining we went out to see an exhibition and to a shrine.
The shrine is Mamada-shrine, which is famous for HIKU (It is a kind of short poem and the style has 5-7-5 sounds in Japanese.) At the shrine HIKU we make is be able to dedicated for free, and  the HIKUs which are made in the month are showed on the bulletin board in the shrine.
Kouyou no  Hitotsu hitotsu to  Tebanashite
Colourful leaves falling down one by one

Hachi kiku no  Enji hounou Omokarou
How heavy such kindergarten kids put the pots of chrysanthemum to dedicate

In the shrine there is a smouring, it's unusual. In this area, SUMOU for kids is popular.
Amefurino Sabishiki Dohou(smou ring) Aki omoi kana
What a lonely smou-ring, looking like sentimental in autumn rain

This place is a gallery where my friend holds an exhibition.
She makes accessory with MIZUHIKI which is a kind of string.
MIZUHIKI no  Gold hana ni  Kureru Aki
Shining gold Mizuhiki while it's drawing in one autumn day

I hope you understand my HIKU.

Tuesday, November 03, 2015


Today it's a national holiday, however Yuki goes to work as usual, so for me it's a usual day.
I removed all Halloween goods, and put this stuffed turkey on the shelf.
Here in Japan "thanks giving" is not popular, however I run a small English school, so I show TURKEY (fake). Of course if I have a chance to eat whole-turkey I want share to kids. I get import-turkey, but it's really expensive.
In the afternoon, I struggle with icloud for windows.  I has used ipone and ipad. so I started to use icloud. BUT it doesn't work well on my computer.
Today's afternoon seemd to be finished with struggleing with the computer.

Our Halloween

November has started, it means the noisy and happy Halloween has gone.
All students including Akari carved pumpkins. (this year I got them from HOKKAIDOU)

Some students made spider pancake with Halloween sprikle.

Some students made skeleton hans with pop corn.

And most students (unfortnately two stdudents couldn't join us becasue of their school trip) did trick or treat. Two neighbours opend the doors, and three neigbours helped us.
I'm not sure sunce when Halloween has popualr in Japan.
Well, well, here in Japan, Halloween means wearing costumes.
This year here and there Costume parties were held.
At some places, the entering fee got free if you wear costumes.
It was fun.
The main event "trick or treat" is not so popualr, probably not so many houses won't open their house.
Anyway Halloween has gone.
Mieko you did a good job! OTUKARESAN(this is Japanese famous word to encorage people.)