Friday, January 30, 2009

It's Test Time Already?

Next week Makoto will be taking the entrance exams of two private high schools. He's been studying hard for the past few months. It's been incredible to witness, actually. He generally gets up at 5:00 a.m. and puts in 2 hours before breakfast. After school he's back in his study area for 2 hours before supper and 4 or 5 after. One week from today, he'll know his results of these two exams. Even if he's accepted at one or both, he'll still be studying for the public high school exam one month later. Regardless of the results, I am impressed and proud of his determination to discpline himself without grumbling. I hate to admit that I didn't think he would be this hardworking.

Moral learned: Mom is the one that has some growing up to do!

I really hated "Examination Hell" three years ago when his sister Nozomi did it for the first time. (The eldest sister, Megumi, didn't go through it because she was planning on going to the U.S. for her higher educaiton and went a completely different path.) This year has not been at all as stressful as it was then. Still, next week will be a climatic one.

This weekend I have to make sure he eats well and sleeps well! And we have to keep little sister Ai away as she's had a fever and a sore throat the past few days.

Go, Makoto!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Anniversary Flowers

I know it's not done according to the "rules" of Ikebana. It looks all right to me. It's to welcome Anata home because today is special. On January 15th twenty-eight years ago, we had our first date. Did I really say 28? I am amazed.

Monday, January 12, 2009

A Belated New Year's Resolution

Sacred Meditations by Johann Gerhardt

I stumbled up this a few months ago, and I couldn't locate it again. Today, as soon as I found it, I had to find a way to keep it right in-my-face accessible. My blog is a good spot.... as soon as I can master how to put it somewhere on the right side of the page, I'll move it there. Until then, I will read one entry a day.

It is so nice to be able to read again, not that I really ever quit reading. It's just that I would never ever find a treasure of this sort in my local bookstore.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Who Stole the Dried Persimmon from the Persimmon Cage?

Anata made this great structure where we hang peeled persimmons out to dry. This morning he went out to check on them, and some clever critter(s) got into it and took HALF of our treats! What a BUMMER! I'm guessing it was a monkey (or 2 or 3!), and they sure are lucky. We need to think again for next year.

Friday, January 9, 2009

First Toothache Ever!

Today I went to the dentist, and discovered I had a pretty big cavity. I knew I was experiencing pain, but I wasn't expecting to have such decay that needed to be removed. It's bearable, but it's there - the pain, I mean. Next week I go back to remove my temporary filling. If there's no continuing pain, I won't need a root canal. Oh, my!

Suddenly I want to say thank you to my parents for always taking me to the dentist before I even knew any pain. Note to self: Call the dentist as soon as you notice even minor pain when you chew. Do not tell yourself it's not that bad!

Monday, January 5, 2009

How I Kept Busy as 2009 Began

This Christmas-New Year "vacation" was quite nice. We stayed home and ate. Not a lot, but everything we ate was good. Well, almost everything. I won't go into the buckwheat noodles that were not cooked before filling everyone's soup bowls! Oh, that was pretty horrid. But, at least we had some dried noodles at hand and could make do well enough.

Here is some of the osechi, New Year's foods, I made.