Monday, November 19, 2018


I love this time of year in Japan.  The weather has cooled down a lot, days can still be warm but the
nights are nice and cool, makes sleeping a lot easier!  Also my seasonal allergies have
calmed down a lot, which helps!  So having a bit of energy I have been trying to clean up and
get rid of things.
Last week the living room got a good clean because Hannah lost her glasses. She needs them for distance so doesn't wear them at home, unless watching TV.  She always puts them on the
book shelf near the door.  So last Wednesday she followed her usual routine, put her glasses
on the books shelf, had a shower, did homework, had dinner,  played on her phone and went
to bed. The next morning she went to get her glasses on the way out and they weren't there.
We had a quick look but couldn't find them.  So while she was out we took the living to pieces, moved the book shelf and sofa, moved the kotasu table out.  Looked through the draws, even in
the fridge!  No glasses!  After 3 days of searching I gave up, she needed new glasses, but I
was hoping to wait until next spring!  I really don't know how she managed that, glasses are
rather big.
The other thing I have been doing is letting go of more books!  I gave some away to people
on an online group. Have more to do.  But I am slowly making room for things that are
important in my life. Not this clutter!  One thing I keep putting off is going to my Mil's place
to sort out the stuff there!  It needs to go!

Sunday, November 11, 2018

A Funny Song

Hannah found this song the other week.  It's in Japanese but has English subtitles.

The reason it is so funny is that it is really true, especially where I live.  The houses here are
built for the summers which are long, hot and humid.  So no central heating, although some newer
houses have under floor heating, but I don't know how good it is!  Also no double glazing.  The most common form of heating is paraffin heaters. Although most air conditioners have an heating element and are very popular.  The house that I am in has city gas, but it is so expensive.  We use a kotasu table, a low table with a heater built in it and covered with a futon.  Gets nice and toasty but like the poor penguin it is difficult to get out.  Each room is heated independently, so moving from room to room is awful.  We are lucky that winter here is not too harsh and it only gets really cold in January and February!

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Halloween and Magic Shows

This past week we have been doing Halloween parties for the kids classes.
I have been baking cookies almost everyday.  I got a new oven a few months back so
baking is easy!

My new oven

Mikey does most of the kids classes. He tells the kids they can invite one friend for the party. So it does get a bit crazy.
I have no idea what they are doing but there is a lot of laughter!

Mikey with his class

Mikey also had two magic shows near here this week.  The first one was at a community center near the house.  The mayor of the city turned up to Mikey's surprise.  The second show was at a local cafe, he was asked to do magic and teach some English!

Mikey doing his magic!
I've been suffering with allergies, I get them every year but this year is really bad!  I hope that it will pass soon!
The kittens have really grown!  They are still cute.  A few cute kitten photos to finish.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Good bye

One of our kittens founds its forever home today!
One of Christopher's friends wanted to have a kitten.  He came today and spent a couple of
hours playing with the kittens, decided to take the brown and white one.

Even though I know it's better for them to go, I have grown rather found of these little guys.
The question now is can I let the others go?

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Here We Go Again

The Care Manager who is responsible for my MIL set her up with a security team.  If MIL had another fall or became ill she has a emergency button that alerts staff who can drive out to her place and check on her.  
Last Thursday night we got a call from the security company.  They were at MIL's waiting for an ambulance.  They called back at 2am saying that MIL had been taken to one of the large hospitals in the next city.  Mikey and I drove out there.  This was the hospital that Hannah was in when she was born, 16 years ago.  The hospital has changed so much, many new buildings and the car parks are all over the place.  We found a place to park but then had to walk to 10 minutes to the emergency building!  When we got there it was a case of waiting around for about an hour!  The doctor came and explained what was going on.  MIL was bleeding internally, maybe because of blood thinning medicine she was taking.  The blood had pooled around her thigh and hip where she had the operation last year.   This was causing extreme pain and she was unable to walk.  We had to wait another hour or so while they did more tests on her.  Then came all the forms we had sign for her, admission forms, permission for blood transfusions, permission for other meds.  We finally left at 6am.  We got back and Mikey headed for bed.
After dropping Hannah off at school, David and I drove back to the hospital.  This hospital didn't want to admit her because she was a patient at another hospital and they had all of the records for her. So we spent a few hours hanging around to get transport, which we have to pay for! MIL was in so much pain that I  had to ask the doctor for extra pain relief!  I understand that they couldn't give anything too strong but they didn't even offer her anything!  Finally we got her to right hospital, another load of forms to fill in!  We then drove to her house to pick up things that she needs.  I was shocked at how bad the house was again.  I was looking for somethings on her table when as massive cockroach ran out!  She had taken jam into the bedroom and left it there, the smell was awful!  We didn't stay long there.  Back to the hospital and finally met with the doctor. He wants to give medicine to thicken her blood a bit but it is dangerous.  Looks like she will be in hospital for a while! So again it looks like we will be spending a load of time back and forth to the hospital.  I am so mad because I wanted her in a home last year but she wouldn't agree and the other family members wouldn't support me.  The only other family MIL had was her sister but she passed away this April.  So everything falls to us!  It is going to be a long autumn and winter!

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Really Not Happy

The city I live in offers cheap health checks for people over 50.  Basic checkup, heart,
blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes and liver function.  A couple of weeks ago I started to
have a burning, tingling feeling on the bottom of my left foot.  Checked Google and the only
thing that came up was nerve damage because of diabetes!  Turns out that the burning had nothing to do with diabetes, one of the kittens had peed in my shoe and even though I had washed it out I was
having an allergic reaction to the cat pee!  Anyway I decided to go and get the health check.
I got the results yesterday!  Blood pressure normal, good, liver function fine!  But my cholesterol
is a bit high!  The big shock was the number for diabetes. The doctor explained that over 6
means diabetes, my number was 5.7!  So I have to lose weight!  I know it's my own
fault, I've been comfort eating since having the operation and now it has caught up to me!
Somehow I can find determination because it is my health that is at risk, just for vanity I
can't find the same determination!  The doctor recommended that I lose 10kg!  That feels like
a lot! But it's a goal and I am giving myself plenty of time to do it.  I'll get the papers
for next years check up in April, so until then I will lose 10kg!
Wish me luck.
If anybody has interesting recipes I would be happy to see them!

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Never Ending

There is a line in the song "Circle of Life" that says " There's more to do than can ever be
done" . That is certainly true in this house! I found a list of to do things marked September 2013,
all I have to do is change the year as the list is the same!  Clean bedrooms, deep clean kitchen (difficult to do in the intense heat of the summer), tidy up the  yard. The only item on my list that is
finished is the back corridor, half of that has been cleaned out, books, papers and things that had been
collecting there for years have gone! So last night I made plans.  The weather has gone cool so
I thought get up. get Hannah to school (school on Sunday, just one hour for some test), then start but
I woke up feeling awful. Headache, sore throat and a fever.  I think the dramatic change in temperature means I have a cold!  So I have slept, and taken some pain killer, lets hope I feel
better for tomorrow!
One thing I have to do is buy a new oven. My old one over heats after about 15 minutes, so
baking cakes or muffins is out of the question!  David and I had a look yesterday but as always
making a decision is difficult!  I hope to check out one more place tomorrow then decide, I really need one before Halloween, the students look forward to the cookies that I make for them!