Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Going Cold Turkey

I have to stop eating sweets, snack breads, chocolate, cookies, cakes, anything with sugar in. I thought I could cut down, be careful but I am all or nothing.  I can't have one cookie or one piece of cake, I want more. So I have to stop all together.  Tough but at the moment my weight is making me ill.  I have a strange lump on the back of my thigh. it is kind of painful.  I am wondering what it is and if I need to go to a doctor.  I am hoping that by loosing some weight it will go, looks like a lump of fat.  Started when I was sitting funny on my chair, the edge of the chair dug into my leg and caused this pain.  I'm also so tired ALL the time, I sleep okay, but never feel refreshed when I wake up.  My days are unfocused and even the very simple jobs I have to do sap all my energy!
So going cold turkey.  Not going to be easy but no choice.  I lost 1kg but gained back half kilo.  I need to loose each month, each week would be the best. 
Wish me luck, there will be many posts about how hard and awful this!!!!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Six Months

Today is six months since hubby passed away.  Six very long, hard months.  Looking back I am surprised at how much got done!  Dealt with banks, credit card company's, post office accounts and sorting out welfare.  Got through Christmas, New Years and two January birthdays. All of that is a bit fuzzy, I think I was in shock.  One thing that really helped during that time was a couple of very good friends, one in Japan and one in UK.  My friend here came and drove us around, took us to a restaurant for the boys birthday and lent me a shoulder to cry on.  My UK friend sent me an email everyday, some days the thought of that email waiting in my inbox is the only thing that got me out of bed.  To those two dear friends, I really don't have words to describe how deeply grateful I am to them, they kept me going when all I wanted to do is stop. 
As the first shock lifted I realised that there were so many things to be done.  Christopher graduated Junior High School and got into High School. Never thought that I could deal with that, Mikey has been a real god send,. He has spent hours filling out forms and dealing with people who don't seem to understand that when a person dies suddenly they don't have time to pass on information such as passwords or PIN numbers.  David became my goofer, he shops for me and helps a lot around the house. Last Sunday I came down at 9am, David had cleaned the living room, done the dishes and laundry!
Hannah's birthday in May was hard.  Hisao always made a big fuss for her birthday.  We celebrate the fact that she is alive, she was born extremely premature and only had a 30% chance of surviving!  Every year Hisao would tell us the story of how he changed his mind at the last second and came home instead of his first plan of gaping to the cell phone company to change his phone.  If he had then he wouldn't of been back in time to get me to the hospital.  Hannah's life is a miracle made up of little things!! 
The next thing that had to be done was getting rid of the car.  That was harder than I thought it would be.  It's only a car but it held so many memories.  But if I hold onto everything that hold memories of Hisao I would never be able to let go of anything!

Externally things have progressed.  On an emotional level I am not so sure.  I am not sitting on the kitchen floor screaming my head off any more but tears are always close by.  I  just miss hubby so much.  I miss his daftness, his smile, his calm wisdom, his love that he showed the kids, his belief in the future.  The way he knew how to win me over.  One very strong memory I have is a fight we had.  This was a few years ago and I really don't remember what we were fighting about.  Hisao went out and came back with a "Jackie Pack",  DVD, diet coke, chocolate and chips.  I was still sulky when he came back but when he handed over the Jackie Pack I cheered up.  David was watching this and said in an innocent way "So that is how to win a fight with your wife"  And Hisao always won the fights!!! 
I have been looking at photos the past few days to see if I can find some that show who he really was.  Enjoy!

The day we got the car

My birthday, few years ago

Space World,  9 years ago

Typical Hisao, sleepy at the computer

With Mikey

With Christopher, Hannah and Mikey, 4 years ago

with David
I hope the next six months pass just as well, that we have no more major stress. 

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Book Off equals Rip Off

I am hopping mad!  Yesterday Mikey and David took some books to Book Off.  Mikey had a full set of kids books, I sent two new English text books with Cd's that had never been opened and 6 other Japanese books on business, hard cover and new looking.  For all that they gave 70yen.  That is not a typo 70 yen.  The text books will resell for at least 1000yen each, the cover price on one was 2500yen and Book Off resells for at least half the cover price.  My biggest problem now is what to do with all the books we have. Hubby was running a Yahoo Auction site to resell books.  Started with books we had lying around but kind of grew out of control.  I am now left with over 2000 books that are taking up space.  I could send more to Book Off but I hate being ripped off like that!!  I know I won't make a lot of money off the books but at least a bit would be nice!!  Any ideas?
 I managed to get my temper under control enough to make a nice dinner.  I found a recipe for Tomato-Zucchini Bake at

Tomato-Zucchini Bake
I had to change it up a bit as I had no Parmesan cheese.
Here is the link to the recipe,,10000001906403,00.html
This site has a lot of interesting recipes, I might try a few out.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

I have to loose weight

I know I started this as a new page but haven't figured out how to add to it!  So it will have to go here.
Friday and Saturday nights were awful, I just can't or won't stop munching at night.  Maybe it a subconscious death wish, life is very hard at the moment and wanting to escape is overwhelming.  But I have kids to take care of and there needs should go first!  So I have to push myself to be more aware in everything I do.  Today I want to clean upstairs, we have been moving the bedrooms round since March but still haven't finished, so once I get off the computer I am rounding up the kids and getting to work.  Also I have to keep throwing out things that are no longer useful, hanging on to stuff isn't helpful.
What does any of this have to do with loosing weight?  For me the hardest part of loosing weight is the mental part, the thinking that goes with it.  At the moment I feel that my life is a mess, my house is a mess so why bother to improve myself.  So I will start with the externals, cleaning up and clearing out, then as I feel better about things around me, lot less stressful as well, I will have more power to deal with loosing weight.  Does that make sense?

Thursday, June 13, 2013


Money is the bane of my life.  Even more so since hubby's death.  I don't have his income but my bills haven't changed that much.  We are doing okay, managed to pay the monthly bills on time but I need to save. Next year David wants to start college, the year after that Hannah starts junior high school, then Christopher might want to go to college.  This keeps me awake at night!  How to manage?  I need to buy some clothes for myself,  the kids need some stuff as well.  Food shopping is so stressful, without a driver I can't get to the cheaper shops. The local supermarket is okay but a bit expensive!  Also with the summer starting there is no way I can walk to the supermarket, so I have joined the local Co-op delivery service.  It's good but again expensive.  Then there is the problem of the air conditioners.  I want to run them, I hate being so hot and sweaty all the time, but with the electric going up by 8% I really can't afford to run them!!   Look out for lots of posts on how much I hate the summer!

In other news I managed to burn my finger the other day.  I was baking potatoes in the microwave.  I use a glass dish with wrap over the top.  I saw that the wrap was full of steam and knew it was hot but still opened it without oven gloves.  Had a lovely burn blister for a couple of days now it is bright red!

Poor finger!
Doesn't really hurt until I start washing dishes!  Good excuse not to wash them!!!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


I hope that today is better than the last few days.  I feel as though I have lost focus and energy to get things done.  Part of it is the weather, even though it is just after 7am I am already sweating buckets.  It is so hard to focus when the heat starts.  Most years I have all the big cleaning done by now but this year I am so behind.  One problem was using the car to store things in.  When the car went we had to take all the stuff out, everything got dumped in the dinning area!

Got some of the stuff put away but there is always more that needs to be done. Since hubby died we haven't been using the dinning table to eat on, to many memories! But I want to get back into the habit of eating there, eating on the small table encourages watching TV while eating.  Sometimes that is okay but not everyday and every meal.

Part of being so unfocused is being so tired.  I get up at 5:30 almost everyday.  Christopher needs an obento and I like to make a good breakfast for the kids.  They don't have lunch until 12:20 and I feel it is too long without something. I am moving away from traditional breakfast foods, Hannah doesn't like eggs or cheese.  Have to be creative!

Gourmet breakfast,  miso soup, rice, sausages and spinach, banana, yogurt and cornflakes.

Let's hope I can get a few things done today!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Oh bother

I survived hubby's birthday by keeping busy!  I had a few breakdowns but I could get things done.  But keeping busy by cleaning has depressed me.  This house is a disaster.  Everywhere is a mess and dirty!  I was so shocked, I knew I had let things go a little but I didn't think it was so bad.  The stove top was awful, I give it a quick wipe down everyday but hadn't really scrubbed it or the wall at the back, the front of the cabinets were bad.  I won't tell you how bad the bathroom was!!  So I have to get out of this funk and get cleaned up, easier said than done though.  Grief is exhausting work, add to that the stress of dealing with the day to day things, figuring out the legal stuff in a language I barely understand and the kids grief I can see why nothing much has been done.  I do the basics everyday but beyond that is too much. I've never been much of a housewife, I put things off, hate cleaning with a passion but also hate living in a dump.  I guess I should get something done today and keep doing bits everyday.
David manages to keep me laughing. I can see my husbands weird sense of humor in him. Yesterday he was helping out in the kitchen when he asked "How many dishes have I broken recently?  Not a very strange question given the fact that in the past 5 weeks he has broken 2 glasses, a plate, a soup bowl and another bowl.  I asked why.  He went on to tell me that at school he broke 30 dishes in one go.  He opened the cabinet to get something out, he banged the door shut and the shelves inside collapsed, breaking all the dishes inside.  His teacher just stood there with her mouth open. 
Then the other day David was changing his trousers in the living room.  I asked "Do you have to do that here" without missing a beat he answered "Yes, it's a public service"   Thanks David!
Mikey and David a couple of years ago

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Hubby's Birthday

Today would of been hubby's 52nd birthday.  I still can't wrap my head around the fact that he is not here to share this day with us!  I know in spirit he is still here but I would of preferred him to be here physically.  I am wondering what to do to celebrate this wonderful man.  We usually do birthdays on the weekend if the birthday day is busy so I am planning on having a little party for us on Sunday. i am wondering if I am brave enough to watch some of our home videos.  There aren't many shots of Hisao because was usually behind the camera but we have a few.

Few photos of hubby
I've been wandering what my husband has left us!  Nothing material that's for sure, no insurance or savings.  But he has left us a legacy to follow.  His whole life, at least his whole life with me was to one goal, to make me happy, to make our kids happy.  He worked hard, he stepped outside the traditional role of a Japanese husband, he spent a lot of time talking with the kids.  After he died Christopher told me that Hisao had taken him to a restaurant as a secret treat, David and Mikey told me of long talks in the car and Hannah said that sometimes when I was teaching Daddy would come and sit with her and talk about when she was born. I know that many times we would talk well into the night and long drives were so wonderful because it gave us chance to connect.  These memories are the treasures that my husband has left us.  I think I was very lucky in my husband, he worked hard but he also understood the need to connect in heart, he was never afraid to speak his mind but he also had the most incredible sense of humor.  I miss him so deeply and days like this are hard to deal with!
I had better go and get some jobs done.  I have made this day busy on purpose otherwise I would be in bed crying all day!  This morning somebody is coming from the gas company is coming to fix our bath again.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Is this June?

I can't believe that it is June.  Six months of the year have gone already!  Far too fast! Last night I was looking for a form that I need to fill out.  Mikey was trying to get me to remember where I moved it to, but the first 4 months of the year are a blur.  I have a few clear memories but it all seems to be in a fog.  Maybe that is how we survive grief.
Also the first 2 days of June have been cool. It is usually so hot and humid, so the past two days of shivery cool days have been a real blessing. I think I am the only one enjoying this weather, the kids kept on "It's cold" all I could say is that it is wonderful! 
Last night I made lasagna for dinner. I haven't made it in ages so it was a nice change. And chocolate cupcakes to follow.  I am wondering how much longer I'll be able to bake!

cupcakes, first time I have tried frosting them, turned out okay

Hannah in her new clothes, I love the pants, she thinks they are strange!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

May was a good month

May didn't start out very well, it was too hot and I had a hard time with that.
But I managed to get a lot done!
Bank is sorted out, still waiting on the post office.  Got the trees cut in the yard, went to MIL's and picked up some of the summer stuff we have in storage there. got rid of the car so I don't have to pay for the tax.  Kids are settled into school and are use to the schedules they have.  So all in all a good month.
Yesterday we washed the dog.  She is a yard dog but still needs a good shampoo every now and then.  Biggest problem is that she hates water.  We tried washing her outside but we have no place to corner her, and seem to spend more time chasing her than washing.  So yesterday I decided to get her into the bathroom.  She came into the house okay but as soon as she saw the bathroom she froze!!  I tried to bribe her with some ham, but didn't work!   Finally between me pulling and Christopher pushing we got her in.  Took ages to do her and we got as wet as the dog, but she is clean....for now!
Today my friend took me and Hannah shopping. I had fun trying all sorts of clothes on Hannah.  Bought her enough to get through summer.
Also Hannah made dinner tonight, curry soup.  She made it at school last week and wanted to try it for herself.  I was busy teaching so she had the kitchen to herself, she did very well. The only problem was the onions!!!

Hannah busy at work and the finished soup