Friday, 31 July 2009

Siblings Without Rivalry

I am reading a book at the moment called 'Siblings Without Rivalry' (Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish). I've actually only just started but already I think it will be a winner. It has changed how I think already!! The book starts off with an exercise asking you to think about your reactions in certain situations...

'your spouse puts an arm around you and says. "Honey, I love you so much, and you're so wonderful that I've decided to have another wife just like you."'

Your reaction....

My reaction... yeah, well you can just fuck right off. I'll bitch slap any skanky hoe you bring into MY house.

'When the new wife finally arrives, you see that she's very young and kind of cute. When the three of you are out together, people say hello to you politely, but exclaim ecstatically over the newcomer. "Isn't she adorable! Hello sweetheart... You are precious!" Then they turn to you and ask, "How do you like the new wife?!'

Your reaction...

My reaction... silly cow, and those tits are so not real.

And on it goes. It has really made me think of how Shou must have felt when Marina came along and how they both must feel now. Obviously our scenario doesn't involve jiggly mummy and new and improved perky mummy but the principles are still the same. Definitely food for thought. As far as I can tell the book deals with how we as parents react to our children and how this in turn affects the way they interact with each other.

Anyway, I'll let you know how we get on.

In an effort to practice scream-free parenting (another book I am 'in the process' of reading) I was very calm and showed extreme inner poise this morning during the usual morning madness. I didn't yell once. I did very strongly suggest that perhaps just maybe Shou and Marina would like to stop throwing stones all over the deck and lawn but that was as far as it went - especially as I really brought the situation on myself! We have a big wooden table on the deck with a built in BBQ bit for Japanese BBQ. It has a big wooden lid. We can't use it for BBQs any more so I cleaned it out and bought a whole lot of biggish pebbles so that Shou could play 'kouji genba' (construction sites) in it with his dump car and diggers. He was playing with the very small gravel under the deck and it was pissing us off something chronic because it was getting all over the grass - which isn't good for lawn mowing or running round in bare feet.

Marina's favorite trick is to sit in the 'construction site' and hiff all the stones out. I'll try and get a pic of it tomorrow.

So anyway, it was a fairly peaceful morning - bar hub being a grumpy prick but will just let him be I think. Hub is working late on end of month shite and in doing so forgoing a dinner and drinking thing that all of the other office workers in our immediate area are attending. I did the dinner and bath thing on my own all though Granny K did help with Ryu while I was finishing getting tea sorted. They are now all asleep.

I met up with Solar Panel man's wife for lunch - when we walked in to the restaurant we saw her father in law which meant we couldn't have big faffin gossip about her mother in law - but also meant that he paid for our lunch on his way out - and in the thirty minutes we had after he left we still ended up only talking about babies and other mummies and kids.

Went for morning walk with Coffee Chiemi and then another big one with just Ryu this afternoon. I have definitely upped the walking since starting GW points - and am consciously trying to drink more water too.

I think hub will probably say he wants to go to the doctors about his back tomorrow and I am torn between wanting to go so we can talk in the car and have lunch - and leaving him be a grumpy bastard on his own. He probably needs some 'me' time too. He is taking Shou to the local festival in the evening to see the fireworks.

Apologies for very boring post - making up for over excitement of honesty post last night.

A couple of pics to sign off with...

This is a REAL smile I kid you not. Yay.

Double Chin... definitely putting on the beef

SDGH&QL

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Honesty - always the best policy?

I'm sitting here with a cup of tea - a glass of wine or five or perhaps a few shots of tequila might be more appropriate considering I am about to tell you 10 'honest' things about myself. Illahee has tagged me with a meme. I'm not sure whether I should be thanking you Illahee, or taking a road trip to steal all your wine and cheese? Do you have any? Surely a box or two would be needed to make it through six weeks at home with three small children over the summer holidays!

Anyway, here’s how the Honest Scrap Award works:

I must thank the person who gave me the award and list their blog and link it.
I must list 10 honest things about myself.
I must put a copy of The Honest Scrap Logo on my blog.
I must select at least 7 other worthy bloggers & list their links.
I must notify the bloggers of the award and hopefully they will follow the above requirements

Now, I am pretty honest on this blog - I vent everything - well almost. Everyone's gotta have some secrets - although perhaps not by the end of this post. Mum, if you are reading this then perhaps you should turn off the computer now. There's nothing too bad I doubt but there might be things about sex and swings and handcuffs that you don't need to know about your baby girl. Everyone else, if you don't want to find out more about me then come back tomorrow night and skip this post. I'm really not even sure what I will be listing but I am sure it will come to me and I will start digging up all my darkest secrets. Confessions of a gaijinwife...

1. I'm actually quite a prude.
Come on. Lay it out there. Start with a biggy. As much as I post about international relations meetings and getting a leg over, for the most part it is all very tame. Lord knows what I would do if I actually came home to find hub trying to entice me into his chamber with built in swing. I like the thought of being very sexually free and having a closet full of nurses outfits, whips, handcuffs and vibrating bunnies, but when it comes down to it all I have is one black lacy number that I doubt would even make it up half a thigh at the moment, and one very boring, no extras vibrator that the girls gave me as a pre-wedding gift (??) It has a name like the black panther or something. It is tucked away in the sock drawer.

2. I am a pessimist (and I know you all know this already) and when I got married I told myself that I would give it until I was thirty five and that if I didn't like the way things were going then then I would get out. What a thought to start a marriage on aye?? I knew that there were several factors not exactly stacked against me, but that were going to make the marriage a challenge - they were/are...
- the age gap: hub is eleven years older
- the past life: hub has an ex-wife and two children now at junior high school
- the whole cultural thing
- the whole language thing and fact hub speaks extremely little English
- the whole inaka living in the middle of the sticks thing
- being so far away from family and friends
Obviously if there were any pink pumping hearts that needed to be taken seriously then I would get out - but then sometimes I wonder if faced with something like infidelity would I really leave in my current situation? Hmmmm. Maybe would just kick hub out and live the rest of my days with the kids and Granny K (and perhaps the odd kuroneko or sagawa kyubin (delivery) boy!!)

3. I really really really wanted my mum to come over when I miscarried the first time. Actually the offer to come would have probably been enough. Ditto for Shou's birth. They came a month later so that they wouldn't interfere with setting up an early routine with the baby. Ditto also for Marina's birth (would have been great help with Shou and at home) and her big operation (because that was scary) and Ryu's birth (because coming home from the hospital to toddler carnage would have been easier if own mother been here).

4. Eventhough I am a pessimist I am glad I have taken the road I have taken. Eventhough we are in the middle of hard times - sleepless nights, potty training, leaky tits, it will be over soon. Hub does a great job for the most part and we just need to survive these next few baby and toddler years. I love my family - even if at the moment for Shou and Marina that means when they are asleep!!

5. Not one day goes by that I don't think at some stage that I am a crap mother. I wonder how my parents did it and try to think back to my early childhood. I sometimes have small panic attacks where I start thinking about all the things that could go wrong or happen to my kids on our journey to getting them safely to adulthood.

6. I still haven't got into the books you gave me illahee. I was hoping that 'how to avoid sibling rivalry' and 'scream-free parenting' would kind of be absorbed through osmosis. They will get read though because I think that will help me with number five.

7. I am not very trusting. Well, I am of my friends but not of hub for some part. This is probably partly due to something that happened a while back (as in before I came to Japan) that sorry, will not be one of the last two confessions :) I pick at his behavior until I think I can see things that aren't even there. When I'm on a roll I can think the absurd - that if he doesn't answer his phone then it's because he has taken a day off work without telling me and must be at pachinko or shagging some skanky hoe in a love hotel. (just being honest) Very rarely do I ever confront him about these absurdities. I think that part of the reason I don't is because one of the times I did I was right and being right too often would just be upsetting - unless of course involved a skanky hoe in which case would smack the bitch silly - but that would be upsetting too, even more so if she decided to smack me back.

8. My weight and I are not the best of friends at the moment. Way back in the day (but only eight years ago really) I was 65 kg and running fifty km marathons and doing duathlons. Now I am nearly twenty kg heavier and I hate it. I hate myself more for not being dedicated and motivated enough to really get down and lose it. At the moment I would be happy to get back to 70 and then ultimately I would like to start running again. There isn't much entertainment in the inaka (country) so most of the towns hold marathons every year - which can be anything from three km up to a half marathon. They just call them all marathons. I would love to run the fifty km one again next November but it depends on how long Ryu decides to breastfeed for as running with these hooters is really not an option.

9. I worry about my sisters and brother since they went into business together. I'm not worried because I don't think the money I lent them will find it's way back to us, I am worried because it is stressful stuff and they are all so completely different in the way they work that it only stands to reason that they would encounter conflicts.

10. If you are still reading this, I was serious when I said we aren't coming to Fiji for your sixtieth next year. In theory it sounds great - golden sand, blue seas, pina coladas, the whole family. But in reality it means hub probably only taking five days off work, two WHOLE days of which would be spent travelling with a four year old, two year old and one year old - including a four hour car ride and possibly three different planes and stopovers in Korea and Australia. I think if I had one pina colada on arrival I would probably pass out for the entire three days we were there. The offer to pay for all our travel expenses is more than generous but I just can't see it happening. I know you all think I'm selfish. You all harp on about the good nanny service at the resort but while I can leave my kids at home while they are sleeping and Granny K is keeping an ear out for them, I don't feel good about leaving them all in the care of some extremely good, friendly and capable nanny who I don't know. In theory the bringing a nanny with us also sounded like a good idea but sadly Japan hasn't hit the nanny boom yet and I don't really fancy doing all of the above with Granny K in tow.

Just send me an international phone card and all the ingredients for five days worth of pina coladas and I will set the the blender (that's blender, blender, blender, and not burendaa which is how you say Belinda in Japanese) up and put on my CD of wave music and ring you all on the blower every day.


So, was that honest enough for you?

I'm not going to tag anyone like it says I have to. I realise that by doing so I will be hit by a truck tomorrow or the sky will fall down. I am willing to take my chances.

In other news....

Granny K's sister and brother in law came over this afternoon. They gave us some congratulations money for Ryu and a whole stash of excellent fruit.

The waffles arrived - the ones I ordered to give back as thankyou gifts for the money and prezzies we got from people. I printed out a whole lot of labels with Ryu's pic and name, weight and thankyou on them. I then taped these over the original label and put them all in bags ready for hub to take to work tomorrow and distribute. It was a bit of a production line but only took an hour or so once I got started. Hub didn't make any positive sounds of approval and just asked if I was going to wrap them up or not. NO would be the answer to that. I have trouble gift wrapping perfectly square objects, so trying to wrap thirty cylinders would be a nightmare. Besides, they all have their own individual bag which I thought was good enough.


Well, TGIF tomorrow. I hope Ryu has a better sleep tonight.

Fingers crossed.

And toes.

And tummy - I could probably cross my jiggly bits if I tried.

SDGH&QL

Edit - and because I'm being honest, I'll confess that now, the next morning, I have deleted one of the list! (I had eleven to start with) Those that got in fast last night will know what it was! It wasn't anything too exciting but I thought about it and it wasn't really just about me so I had to let it go. Sorry!

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Go go gadget nipples

I breastfed my kids for a few reasons, the main ones being...

1. thats what everyone I knew at the time was/is doing
2. surely it's got to be easier than making formula in the middle of the night
3. I got these damn things for a reason surely more worthy than what they had been used for up until time in question.

Really the only piece of advice my eldest sister gave me was to feed my kids with a bottle every so often from the word go so that they get used to it. Why? in case you get knocked for six with a bitch of a cold or you wanted to go out with the girls or you are just sick of having your boobs out twenty four seven and want bubs to have a bottle or get someone else to feed him/her. I followed this advice and all three kids took / take the bottle fine. And it has been a godsend - mainly because I need a bit of down time out with family or friends now and then to stay sane - and this downtime usually involves a beverage or two of some kind.

I stopped breastfeeding Shou at six months because I got pregnant again with Marina. Marina stopped at about the same of her own accord. I would like to feed Ryu for a year but we'll see how we both go. I must admit that breastfeeding in summer is not that nice. Sweaty big boobs thrust in your face on a hot day, and the only thing on offer is warm milk. Gotta be nice. I wish I could ice it or froth it up a bit or add some flavors every now and then. What will it be today Master Ryu? Booby on the rocks? Baileys and Booby perhaps??

Anyway, onto the title of the post... go go gadget nipples.

At the moment hub is sleeping in Shou's room on a futon and I have the big queen size bed to myself - and Ryu of course. He sleeps in his cot when I can be bothered but a lot of the time he takes up my side of the bed while I sleep on hub's side. We have one of those lights with a remote control so I can keep it on dim. This was mainly so could see when changing shitty nappies in the middle of the night. He has stopped shitting during the night now though so I try and keep the light off.

I think my nipples, in the big wide world scheme of nipples, ar pretty decent nipples. Not too big, not too small rah rah. But god there are times when I wish I could push a button and they would turn into go go gadget nipples. Those times are...

1. when Ryu is beyond himself with hunger and has the whole stevie wonder head thing going on. Need me some go go magnet nipples so that his mouth can connect on the first try and not on try one hundred and seventy three.
2. when it is so so damn pitch balck that I can't even find the remote for the light. Need me some go go glow in the dark nipples.
3. when Ryu is still kind of asleep but wanting a feed and is in a funny position. Need me some go go go-round seek-and-find missile nipples.

I am a bit lazy when it comes to breastfeeding. I am sure that a lot of mothers would have reached a much better pattern/schedule by seven weeks than what we have. My mother asks after our nightly schedule every time I CALL HER. I'm not too arsed about it though. I'm sure it will sort itself out. Afterall he isn't going to be demanding he sleep with mummy and suck boob when he starts school.

Christ, well I hope not.

Anyway, in actual news...

Was lashing rain this morning so couldn't walk with coffee Chimei. Came home after dropping the kids off at kindy and had big sleep with Ryu - after not so good night last night (hence prompting nipple blog). Met my friend 'blender' for lunch and then we came back here for coffee and cake - which I don't believe earns me any GW points towards my weight loss. I did however go for hour long walk this arvo - just me and Ryu so powered along. Had an english class and then went to pick the sproglets up. Hub was home early - well, in time for the bath chaos at least. They are ALL asleep now so I can't see me getting a leg over, which is a shame because I really needed the points today.

Actually hub has a sore back and if it is still sore tomorrow morning is going to take day off work and go to doctors. I don't think it's my fault. Our international relations meetings weren't so enthusiastic that he would put his back out.

Give me a swing and then ... well, then we might be getting into old man sore back territory.

SDGH&QL

Bloody hell, almost forgot. This is what hub made Shou for breaky this morning.

Tis a fire engine omelet and crab weeners (kani kani - Marina's favorite word) God, crab weeners sounds terrible. What I mean is small sausages cut in the shape of crabs.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Welcome BG

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The Niigata Nimpu (as affectionately named by hub) has had her beautiful little girl. It altogether sounded like a pretty lengthy and horrific experience - and god she hasn't even posted the birth story yet. It has made me reflect on the birth of my three sproglets.

Shou was the first and well, being the first and all, was scary. Yes, people tell you you feel like you are going to split in two but you can't really imagine what the pain will be like until you experience it. Shou was six hours start to finish with no braxton hicks or pre labour contractions leading up to it at all. Luckily the organizer in me already had my hospital bag packed because he came out ten days early - and we now share a birthday.

Marina was a worry because from before thirty weeks we were told that if whatever it was that was showing up on the scan got bigger I would need an emergency C-section. That never happened though but we knew that as soon as she was out she would need tests. She couldn't hold off till her due date either and came out one day before. She was four hours start to finish and ditto no braxton hicks really at all.

Ryu was my longest and most painful experience at eleven hours plus the weeks of walking round with the saloon doors ajar and contractions most days including a whole day in false labour. As that happened two weeks before my due date, despite my pleas, the doctor wouldn't induce me. He came out one week before his due date.

And thank bloody god. After reading about the niigata nimpu's last few days I am glad I had 'normal' births. I'm not that keen on the sound of the 'stick' which was a whole lot of seaweed shoved up her bits to bring contractions on and help soften things up perhaps?? What is the equivalent in New Zealand? Surely the doctors in New Zealand don't shove seaweed up your fanny? Is it the balloon? When that failed to work properly she got the induction drugs that start with p and are something like pictacon? pictacin? picaton? picatin? pick a bloody vein and stick it in there you stupid inbred nurse. She got it wrong and the drugs leaked. This hasn't happened to me personally but when Shou was hospitalised for a common cold (bit of an exaggeration there but not far off) when he was about seven months old he had a drip and because he was a baby they put so much damn McGyver tape around his hand that it took then a lot longer to realise that it was leaking into his arm - they didn't realise till his whole arm up to his elbow was blown up like a friggin balloon.

Anyway, best not to spoil the birth story. I am just in awe that she got through it all with what seems to be a ward of incompetent doctors and nursers. She must be completely shattered and exhilarated at the same time. That feeling of 'I am woman and I bloody rock because I have just pushed very big head out small hole' feeling. Amazing.

So, even though you wont be reading this till you get home, congratulations on the birth of your absolutely gorgeous baby girl. Hub emailed me at lunchtime to see if I had checked to see if you had given birth yet. I had to remind him that my computer has been on for three days solid and I think I have arthritis in my hands.

SDGH&QL Baby Girl

(Sweet dreams, good health and quiet living)

Monday, 27 July 2009

Sunshine at Last

Ryu was being a fussy bugger last night so it was surprising that I managed to get through today without a snooze. I could have, I could have lazed on my fat arse all day but I chose to take advantage of the weather.

Ryu and I went for a long power walk on our own - the 4-5km circuit. Took an hour and I felt sufficiently exercised at the end of it. Did a few rounds of washing and cleaning,tidying the remnants of the weekend carnage away. We then went for a drive to get boring shite like paper to print out our thankyou notes on - that are going to be stuck on the mini waffles when they get here maybe tomorrow or Wednesday. Fun fun fun.

The afternoon - you mean other than checking the computer every ten minutes to see if the Nigata Nimpu had given birth yet... um not much :) This is a name my hub made up. I called her by her name but foreign names are confusing - especially as she has the same name as my sister. God, when I talk to Shou and tell him to get the blender out so we can make a shake, hub thinks I'm talking about my friend Belinda!!

The kids were good - making up for their monsterous behaviour yesterday methinks. The teachers didn't say anything when I picked them up from kindy so the shits yesterday must have been a two off.

Hub did have a very daft moment this morning though.

I had misplaced my phone so rang my number from the landline. It was on vibe and hub said it was coming from in the fridge - obviously hanging out with the rubber bands in there. It was actually down the side of the couch which is a good three meters away. Hmmmmm.

Definately an early night tonight. So that gives me 2 GW points for a before 10pm bedtime. Along with my 2 points for water and 6 points for exercise that gives me ten points.

Yay.

I think ten points at least a day should be my goal. I was bit crap on the food front and can't be flagged getting the gears off to get a leg over so will have to stay at 10 points for today. Maybe hub will get lucky tomorrow...

SDGH&QL

Sunday, 26 July 2009

Sunday Carnage

Will someone please turn the damn rain off. I don't mind a bit of rain - it's good for the garden after all. I don't mind a lot of rain - in fact the thunder and lightening is quite fun. But I'm not that keen on lashings of rain for days and days on end. The washing piles up and I start to get cabin fever.

I know I now have a flash new washer and dryer but still, don't really feel the need to have to put the four hour dryer cycle on three times in one day. I guess today was just one of the days. Lashing rain, the kids at home running absolute rampage, both kids getting the runs bad enough to not be contained in a nappy - and in fact Shou wasn't even wearing one!! Marina slammed her fingers in the bathroom door and then to top it off Ryu crapped in the bath and I slammed the door in Granny K's face just because she happened to have the misfortune of popping her head in the lounge to say she was off for a walk (rain momentarily stopped) just as I was trying to dress Ryu and get the kids to settle down at the same time - all the while with my boobs out cause had just gotten on my jim jam bottoms and not had time to find a clean top that didn't smell of milk.

Oooh, Shou also went for a lash in the alter room - I don't think he did it to be naughty I think it was more because mummy and daddy were in a foul mood and Marina had just slammed her fingers in the door so he probably felt he couldn't say he needed to go. Sigh.

I don't think there were any other dramas today. Marina's fingers in the door was pretty stink but thankfully I saw it that split second before it was going to happen and I screamed out 'stop' (actually think it just came out as arrrgghhhh) but it was loud enough to get hub's attention enough to stop closing the door. She can still move them and she seems fine now but it was pretty traumatic at the time - for all of us I think - apart from Ryu who was hanging out in his bouncer grizzling for boob.

I was looking forward to his and my bathtime together, thinking it would calm me down after the Sunday carnage. I saw the air bubble break the surface of the water a second before the bright yellow pooh floated up - honestly, just like squirting a tube of paint out. Until you try and scoop it out that is and then it all breaks up and you end up laughing because really at the end of a day like that what else can you do? I had to re-run the bath for hub and Granny but as couldn't be flagged trying to fish all the bits out while holding onto Ryu with one hand and while right booby was going for gold - if your boobs are pumped up anyway with milk there is nothing like a warm bath to get them to switch to auto-squirt.

So, no afternoon nap meant Shou was asking to be put to bed by quarter to seven. Bless his little heart, he really knows how to keep mummy and daddy twisted around...

Lets just leave it at twisted aye.

To end a day of carnage, mayhem and floating pooh...


SDGH&QL

Oh, and this is why toddlers holding babies requires parental supervision

The over-enthusiastic squeeze

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Afternoon Meeting

Well hub didn't earn a hundred bucks by getting his head shaved. Is pretty short though. After he got back we got our shite sorted and headed out for lunch and some shopping - boring stuff though. Got home and would you believe hub suggested an international relations meeting. And would you believe I agreed to take the minutes. That's twice in less than twenty four hours. That hasn't happened since pre-kiddy days.

Of course I was thinking primarily of my two points - but obviously wasn't so enthused I felt the need to get into any comprimising positions! I also did my air climber step dvd - but only one workout, so twenty minutes. I drank shitloads of water too but everything else went by the wayside.

The kids were right terrors when they got home. Marina IS BAD. Naughty naughty. I tried the time out on the stairs today - behind the kiddy gate. Shou nutted out and acted like I expected but Marina - she sat there and laughed. When I got all my-way-or-the-highway mummy with her she continued to laugh. I think I have my hands full with that one ;)

I wonder where she got her stubborn defiant attitude from.



A real mystery that is.


Well, having an early night - but sleeping. Honest. No more antics. Had enough the last week to last at least a month - although I have sneaking suspicion that loads of shagging equals a happy home. More shags equals hub being more cuddly cuddly cute cute equals mummy being less of a bitch equals less yelling at the kids equals kids catching on and playing nice equals mummy and daddy being happy equals more legs getting more overing.

SDGH&QL

2 points plus bonus points.

Not even six am on Saturday morning and Shou and I have been up for over half an hour already! Punishment for having a nice night out perhaps? I seem to recall that when hub goes out I tend to do the early morning kid thing because he is about as helpful as a sack of spuds the next morning. He did bring Shou downstairs before but then promptly fell asleep on the cushions in the alter room and Shou, quite understandably, came back upstairs to get me. Thank god Ryu decided he wanted to sleep some more.

So yesterday, before I went out...

A friend who I haven't seen since Ryu was born came over in the morning. She brought chamomile and peppermint things of tea for me - I would have preferred gin but she must know that I'm trying to turn over a new leaf, in which case nice cups of peppermint tea would probably be better than chugging back loads of gin and tonic. She has three kids - all a year older than this lot so we had a good talk about the trials and tribulations of having three small children and husbands who work at the town office. She also brought cake with her and well, it would have been rude to not have some...

needless to say I didn't get many points on my first day using the GW point system. I did go for a half an hour walk in the morning and then came home and raked the leaves on the lawn though.

So, the points I got...

4 points for doing forty minutes of exercise
2 points for shag plus extra 2 for reasons explained in previous post. I wonder if I should get extra for getting thrown over piece of furniture. Hmmm me thinks the point system needs some tweaking.

After picking the kids up I finished dinner, fed them and then hub turned up home. We bathed them and hub entertained them while I had a pre-going out drink while I got ready. Having a wine and getting ready for the night out is almost as fun as the night out itself - well it was when I was getting ready with other girlfriends and didn't have two year olds hanging off my every limb.

I had bathed Ryu before I went to pick the kids up and he was in sleep sleep sleep, don't even try and wake me, mode. I tried anyway and he had a token two sucks on the boob before passing out again. I put Marina to bed and then Shou and my forehead had some rare photo time...


We got in the car and went to pick Chiemi up and then we were off. Yippy Yay. Chiemi and I had great time. Got a wee bit sloshed, had yummy food and gossiped for close to three hours about kids, husbands, shagging, the town office and silly slags at the town office who were all obviously only about getting into the married men's pants. It was great. The owner of the place knows both of us and asked after our significant others and collective six children. We said they were at home doing their damn fatherly duty.

Huurah

Kampai

Her hub came to pick us up. He didn't seem in a particularly great mood. Woe is me for having to do (with the help of my parents and grandmother) what my wife does ON HER OWN every time I am out with office. The two of them aren't on altogether speaking terms at the moment and according to friend most of their arguments start with her wanting some more loving and him not being up for it. She then pulls out the 'your a man for christ sake' and he gets in a huff and retreats to his room to play video games and peruse his collection of adult videos.

I got home and hub and I had a drink and got silly on the couch. I then got an email from friend saying thankyou for super night out (ditto) and that as expected her hub wasn't up for it and was giving her the cold shoulder and that she was jealous of what was probably going on over the paddies at our house. Um, yes, well...

It is now half nine - and no it hasn't taken me three hours to write this post. I got sidetracked with breakfast and general kiddy carnage for a good few hours in there. The sproglets are now off at kindy, Ryu is having a wee grizzle upstairs and hub is out getting his hair cut - he gets a hundred bucks if he comes back with a boozu (shaved off)

I might get a cuppa and finish ordering our 'return' thankyou gifts for the 'congratulations on new baby' gifts and money we got. I ordered 26 yesterday - cheap ones. About 600 yen for people that gave us small gifts that I calculated to be between two and three thousand yen. Also hub's office all put in three thousand yen each and there are 18 of them. I ordered mini waffles - they look very cool and when they arrive I will have to then stick picture of Ryu on the case and wrap them up as the online shop I bought them from doesn't offer that service - how non Japanese of them. It is quite common to get towels back so I make it a rule never to give them. I think food is better as then they don't just get chucked in the back of the cupboard along with all the other 'return' gifts.

Shopping awaits.

SDGH&QL

Thursday, 23 July 2009

GW Point System

English class finished, the kiddlywinks in bed and hub and I are sitting here companionably (WTF, is that even a word??) sharing a beverage. I forgot to mention that I put a little love letter in his wallet yesterday along with some 'pocket money'. It was really just a 'thank you darling for all the work you do. Have a nice day' kind of bollocks. He was chuffed I think. I am still a learner in the lessons of how to please your man by really doing not much at all.

Interlude - watching fantastic Japanese TV program where the famous silly people have to put hands in box and guess what they are touching - current thing is a hedgehog. The previous box was bullfrogs. God, I love Japanese TV.

Ryu and I had a lazy day today seeing as my afternoon class has been cancelled over the summer holidays. Went walking with coffee Chiemi and her son this morning - an hour but only at five year old leg pace. I was still pretty knackered though and Ryu and I had lovely snuggly sleeps for an hour and a half when got home. Got up, rang sister and then had phone call from friend in NZ.

Friend and I weigh exact same weight at moment and both want to lose the jiggle so have set a goal to lose six kilos by 20th of October - which is just before her school reunion. She reminded me that we had the exact same conversation a year ago - well not exact same but similar weight loss rah rah. Then I got bloody pregnant and everything went to custard. So here we are again and damned if I'm having this conversation again next year. Unless its more along the lines of 'you know, I really hate that I can't break 65 kilos'...

So, anyway to rise to the weight loss challenge I have devised a gaijin wife points system. I did weight watches back in the day but this is not like that point system. This is a try and get as many points as you can system. Points are allocated for different things that will aid in the weight loss - and I am going on the theory that a healthy mind equals a healthy body - and in a very very very round about sort of way that a healthy relationship and everyday life plays its part in a healthy mind which leads on to healthy body rah rah.

Everything below gets 2 points.

1. Twenty minutes of exercise (DVD, walking, raking leaves rah rah bollocks)
2. Drinking more than one litre of water (because I am crap at drinking water)
3. Having no more than 3 non-water beverages a day (coffee, tea, beer, diet coke...)
4. A frolic in the shower or bath with your significant other (add an extra point if you are in a compromising position that uses usually unused muscles)
5. Not eating after 8pm
6. Getting into bed (your own to sleep) before 10 pm)

Everything below gets 4 points.

1. Eating healthily the whole day - which really means no crap and none to only moderate amounts of cheese.
2. Getting a leg over (add two points for anything that involves hub not being on top and five billion points for anything that involves a swing)

I am trying to think of how many points I need to reach before I get a treat and what that should be.

On that note - after our sleep this morning I put my core rhythms DVD on and did about twenty minutes, gave Ryu a hug and danced round the room for ten minutes, put him back down in the bouncer and then spent ten minutes raking the leaves on the lawn. Also did a few token stretches and situps - and in doing so realised that my 'ouchy core' is not actually my core at all but the muscles above that. Must be from doing more than just token amount of situps on Tuesday. Is still sore.

Well, is nearly ten. Can't see myself getting two points by running up the stairs in the next two minutes. Haven't earned many points today actually so maybe I could make some up by getting a leg over.

And getting the swing out perhaps.

SDGH&QL

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Pumping Hearts

Remember the bloody big pink pumping heart from a week or two back? Well, it has been on my mind a bit and the fact that it seemed so odd that the subject of a mail about delivery lunches would be a pink pumping heart. I looked at all the subject lines of my recent emails. The common subject moving pictures are the pumping heart / two hands together / an eye with a tear / and two hands doing a double peace sign / happy face / question mark ...

I went through the emails that accompanied these subjects and after intensive research have realised that each subject picture has specific words that set it off...

two hands together - have 'onegaishimasu'
an eye with a tear - have 'gomen' or 'zannenn' (sorry, or that's a shame)
double peace sign - have 'tanoshii' or 'yokatta' or something similar (fun or good)
happy face - more of the same as double peace sign
question mark - has a question mark in the message somewhere

and the bloody big pumping pink heart - has the word 'love' or 'like' in the message. I have had this from a friend in NZ who texted saying she loved the plastic fruit I sent. To complete my research I then sent an email from my gmail account to my phone. I wrote in Japanese 'I like asparagus'. I left the subject blank but when it turned up in my phone, what do you know there is bloody big pumping pink heart.

So, DOCOMO people, where do you get off randomly inserting your own subject pictures into peoples messages. I am very nearly ready to hold you personally responsible for huge argument we had about the fuckin big pumping pink heart. Great program you have for picking up the key words or whatever but be warned, you may be causing damage where it's not needed.

I am still weary but not as much so - especially after a whole day today of watching over hub's phone. He left it here this morning and when he rang and asked if I could drop it off if I was coming over that way I said I had a, b, and c to do and that I wasn't going in that direction - half an hour drive away. There has been no movement on his phone at all. He did ring up at lunch time to ask if anyone had phoned - stupid thing to do because that just makes the female mind wonder if he was expecting anything, and if so who, what, when, why, how ... ??????

Anyway, enough about phones. Who didn't sing 'total eclipse of the heart' at some time today? I decided, at eight minutes before Oita was getting it's best bit of the eclipse to pack the baby in the car and drive down to the beach. I passed lots of people outside having a naughty squiz at the sky without their special glasses on. I was expecting it to become all dark but Oita didn't get the total eclipse - we only got a 90 percent or whatever. It was still very cool though and the low cloud cover meant you could see it without having to squint or shade your eyes. The sun became a perfect crescent like the moon. Very cool. I hope the people that paid shitloads to go stay in a tent in tentsville down on that little Island in Okinawa (was it Amamioshima) got to see it cause the weather was a bit shit there too apparantly.

In other news, my core was a bit sore today so I did my step DVD instead. I have three completely different exercise DVDs - core rhythms, Step and Billy. I don't think Billy will be doable unless I tape my boobs with sports tape and not too keen on that because shit thats gotta hurt pulling it off. The step DVD was even a bit booby jiggly so think will alternate the step with the core rhythms. Walking was cancelled again this morning due to crap weather but things looking up for tomorrow.

Shou and Marina were running rampage and creating general carnage at six o'clock this morning when I heard a smash. I went into the alter room and the watermelon that Granny K had on offer to the gods was on the other side of the room and a plate was broken on the opposite side. Now, I have no idea what happened and after closer inspection the kids appeared fine. I put on my angry mummy face but didn't yell at them (as am in process of introducing scream free parenting techniques - snort snort giggle giggle) and told them to sit down because I was going to bring Granny K in so they could apologise.

I bring GK in and Marina and Shou are siting quietly in the middle of the room. I ask what happened and Shou said he didn't know. I asked who did it and Shou said it wasn't him. Marina was left out of the questioning as at the moment she has only just come to grips with saying 'suika' watermelon. I ask them to please sit properly (on their knees in traditional Japanese style) and to say sorry. They both bow down completely at Granny K and say sorry.

It was THE CUTEST thing ever and Granny K and I were doing our bestest at keeping straight faces.

Hmmm, what else. The measles is going round at kindy - starting in the little kids group where Shou and Marina are. They both got it a year and a half ago - when Shou was one and a half and Marina was three months. Shou got the real thing but Marina only got a splattering - probably because she was still being fully breastfed. The doctor was infact surprised that a baby that young who was being breastfed would get it at all. The teaches at kindy reckon they could still bring home the virus and pass it on to Ryu - but surely he wouldn't get it that young. But then maybe my measle defeating fighters being passed on to him via booby aren't that good. Fingers crossed anyway.

Shit, am missing gyoten news. Hub still at work but home soon. Coffee Chiemi and I are going out on Friday night by ourselves.

As in no kids.

And no husbands.

And, there will be beer and perhaps a chuhai involved.

Am very excited.

SDGH&QL

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Energized

I did the DVD this morning - well, I did half an hour and then it got a bit jumpy and boobs told me had to stop. Did some stretches and situps. Must admit is most exercise, bar walking, I have done in a long time. I don't count getting a leg over as exercise as any recent meetings have been very very passive on my part. That will change though, when I get skanky and slim enough to be thrown up against a wall.

I was looking at my stats page and clicked on the recent searches. Apologies to the person who landed on one of my posts titled 'Suck me in' when really you googled 'suck me in the back of my car'. I hope you found what you were looking for.

Today was lashing lashing lashing rain - and thunder and lightening. The works. Was quite exciting but meant couldn't go walking this morning and all thoughts of going out anywhere in the car were squashed as just getting from the house to the car was shower material. Needless to say picking up the kids from kindy was all fun.

The afternoon was a very lazy one - some cuddles with bubs, a bit of cooking, and some faffing round doing god knows what. Hub came home in time for bathtime and like I good wife I 'thanked him' for all his hard work - today is pay day. I used to not say anything to him, mainly because it never occurred to me. Nobody thanks me for what I do after all. One pay day though hub was in a foul mood and when I asked why he said 'did it not occur to me to say thank you at least on pay day' ?? If he brought home hard cash I may have been inclined to do so but half the time I don't even remember unless I actually have to go to the bank on that particular day.

At the time it prompted the 'you think your job is more important than mine' just because you get money. He said that of course his job was more important... rah rah rah ended in huge discussion and he wouldn't stand down. Thou is man. Beat thy chest.
Thou is woman. Use they head. Take all thy husbands hard hard hard hard earned money and ration out little bits to him as you see fit.

Anyway, I have learned that a praised man is a happy man and so now I make an effort to 'thank' him on pay day. So today, I ironed all his shirts and made him a nice dinner. Ironing shirts is not on my list of wifely duties but today they just happened to be spread all across the tatami room. Hub had only ironed one last night and left everything out, including the six unironed shirts. Fortunately the iron had been unplugged - although Granny K's room is the closest one being right next door.

Must say though, the woman is actually being a help lately. And her eye is getting better. I think she is even feeling up to being in public again.

Well, another early night perhaps. Or do you dare me to go for three times in one week...

SDGH&QL

Monday, 20 July 2009

Reclaiming My Core...

Just quickly cause I really need to get to bed. Tis part of me turning over a new re-vitalized, healthy, fit, calmer leaf.

snort snort giggle giggle.

I'm serious though. Well I am at the moment. Who knows what that living with your mother in law, mother of three small children, married to a man who can't speak English wind will bring with it tomorrow. Probably a crate of sav and a thousand packets of crisps. But I guess I'll deal with that if it happens - no doubt by scoffing the crisps and slogging the vino.

A friend visited yesterday evening after our play date. She was going to pop in during it but I suggested she hold off until water gun terminator was over. She turned up just before dinner time which didn't matter as
a) the kids were getting left over pie and pasta and
b) it was only her - in a good way. ie; as in not someone I care sees the house and all of us in a state of social welfare crisis.

She brought back some DVDs I had loaned her - including my Core Rhythms Exercise DVD - I had so totally thought I had lent it to someone else. I think it's a sign you know. I'm starting it tomorrow. There is a lot of moving but no jumping as far as I can remember so putting the biggest sports bra I own on after Ryu has been tanked up on milk and the boobs are as empty as can be and should be OK. It is all about dancing your core away - or the flabby bits around your core at least.

Hello in there core, I know you're in there but I'm having trouble seeing you through the mass of post baby jiggle. Can't hide for ever though, I have too many nice clothes that need wearing before I get too old to wear them and damned if you're going to stop me. There's only so much I can leave to breastfeeding. The rest, god damn it, is my responsibility.

Of course this is very shallow. It's not JUST about the clothes. It's also about money - can't afford to buy more clothes as that would involve trip home as well as can't buy clothes here. It's also about health and how much healthy (in mind) I will feel when I can fit into jeans that don't have an elasticated top. And it's about vanity and getting a leg over - I think will feel more up for a bit more action packed leg overing if I wasn't feeling so yuck about the jiggle.

Not that hub gives a shit ... not judging by last nights leg overing. Two times in a week. Holy shit, that's a record of late. He was very touchy touchy today - a hug here, a wee pat there, a few 'suru?' (up for it?) s...

Not tonight though tarzan. Jane needs an early night.

SDGH&QL

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Play Date & Scary Popo

Today we had some friends come and play. Illahee and her brood of beautiful children drove all the way to our little corner of the paddy to play. I have met Illahee once before but reading her blog and vice versa it feels like I have known her for a lot longer. We talked and talked and I got all my English words out for the week, while the sproglets got naked and played outside. In the lead up to their visit I was inside looking after Ryu and making some stuff for our lunch. Hub was outside watching Shou and Marina in the pool (at nine in the morning!!) but was more fixated on shining his hubcaps. Illahee assured me that her hub wouldn't know the difference and he didn't but I think hub felt better in the knowledge that they were shiny - like me and my bench I guess!!

When they first arrived Marina was still asleep and when she came downstairs after the rest of us had had lunch it took her a wee while to check it all out - then of course she felt fine as and ready to get naked with the boys. She was pretty excited to have Tommy to play with. God, being able to play in the pool without getting your head held under - what fun. They had a great time. Tommy is three days older than Marina. Check out her mullet. (photo removed due to too many hits and downloads by skanky persons wanting pics of naked chilren - fuck right off)

Shou enticed Hiro into running round with the water guns and in the end picking on the little kids - or rather drowning them with water. All fun, although I do think Shou rarked the other kids up a bit.(photo removed - ditto)

And because she wasn't running round naked with the boys here is a pic of Sasha on the swing, looking as cute as ever.


All the kids had a great time and I think the person (??) that came out the worst off was perhaps popo chan - Marina's doll. She's a bit scary - what's a bet she had it off with chucky in a past life.

I had hung her up to dry from her feet but when I checked later she was in 'mid-cartwheel'. Hub apparently felt sorry for her. As if being hung up by an arm and a leg is any better?

And just for good measure... Because we love poorly taken dark photos of extremely cute babies.

After a great day (thank you!) our visitors left, Shou and Marina picked at whatever we had left over and then it was bath time and bed. They both zonked pretty quickly. Ryu is also swaddled to within an inch of his life and in peaceful slumber.

Hub has had a few beers after his hard day running round after the kids, and is looking at me as if his leg is getting a twitch. Hmmmmm.

To get a leg over or not to get a leg over, that is the question...

SDGH&QL

Later - watching an MJ special on satelite - the 30th anniversary or something. He is a bloody legend, and above all else such an entertainer. His songs, I mean who can say they really don't know the words to at least one of them! A true rockstar. If I could moonwalk and type at the same time I would be...

Saturday, 18 July 2009

In need of another match...

And no, I don't mean to set fire to Granny K's room. How could I when her eye is still so bad. That would just be cruel. Actually she has been doing quite a stellar job lately and we haven't crossed mean gaijin and mother in law paths in a while. Her eye is not getting better and if there is no improvement I will strap her into Shou's carseat (she'd probably fit) and take her to the skin doctor on Tuesday - Monday is a public holiday. Sea day or something equally random.

So, the match... I think I read in a cosmo article once that in order to 'rekindle' your relationship you should try shagging every day for a week. Don't worry, I've only just got back on the bike and don't plan on doing the tour de fricken anything anytime soon, but maybe one day. I'm sure hub would be up for it. God, that's an understatement - he seems to think we need to make up for lost time while I was feeling big, pregnant and heinous and post birth while I was just feeling big and heinous. I still am feeling like that but a bit of dutch courage and I turn into a bit of a skanky hoe it would seem. Thankfully I have breastfeeding as an excuse and dutch courage skanky hoe nights are few and far between.

Hub had work today, or rather he felt he needed to go to work for the day. The office has a completely crap computer system whereby if the tax boys want to sit there punching in shitloads of data (which they have to do this time of year - and about four other times during the year) then it bungs the system up and all the other offices have trouble printing out stuff. THEREFORE, the tax boys have to do all number punching innering before 8am or after 5pm. Me thinks the city office needs to upgrade from Windows 98.

He took the sproglets to kindy and then left for work. Ryu and I went back upstairs and had some of that lovely I-have-no-recollection-of-pushing-that-big-head-out-that small-hole time. He is six weeks tomorrow and getting to that really lovely baby stage. Don't get me wrong, all babies are gushy, warm fuzzies lovely, but I do like it when they get past that panic survival arm flapping stage. Ryu is SO CLOSE to doing the big cheese too. Can't wait for the smiles. As it is he just does the pre-smile stare. You know he is thinking about smiling but can't quite coordinate the 'I really want to smile at mummy cause she look silly' with the 'really need to move those muscles on the side of my mouth'.

It's only a matter of time though.

And then it's only a matter of a bit more time before he can voice that the only reason he is smiling is because mummy looks silly.

And by that time I will be thinking that the idea of another cute little baby maybe perhaps just one more time isn't so bad.

And If I'm still blogging at that time then can someone please come down and hit me over the head with whatever it takes to squash any fourth child thoughts.

As for the rest of today - Ryu and I went to meet daddy for lunch. Dropped him back off at work, did some shopping and came home. Had quiet afternoon doing boring shit like folding washing and mowing the lawn. I tried to get Shou off to sleep tonight with a CD of Japanese folk tales - he loves momotaro and hub or I always have to tell it to him during his increasingly ridiculous and long pre-sleep antics. I was hoping that I could get him to listen to a CD instead of us - especially me as my version is complete bollocks. I made it up based on what hub told me. When I listened to the real thing tonight I got quite a shock. Poor momotaro - my version was a complete rightoff compared ot the real thing.

Turns out the CD worked for twenty minutes and then Shou did big crap in his nappy and hub went up to change it and get him off to sleep. Hub has most probably fallen asleep as well. Perhaps I should have some dutch courage and go and sneak in for round two - just to make sure he took all the minutes correctly at the last meeting. Had a night in between though so wouldn't count towards the one week needed to 'rekindle' our relationship.

SDGH&QL

Friday, 17 July 2009

Just Like Riding a Bike...

It turns out that the nearer out of the nearer rather than more distant future was correct last night. In fact a lot nearer. In fact about an hour after I posted I think. A nearly three month hiatus and it turns out that getting a leg over is just like riding a bike...

I don't really know what came over me. Well I do of course and I had had a drink for dutch courage (why do we say that? are the dutch all scaredy cats that need to be on the lash all the time to get anything done?). I must say that the meeting wasn't as scary as I thought it would be, not nearly as bad as I remember it being after baby one - and I had the same doctor attending to the warwounds both times. I don't think hub's diddly whatsit has shrunk. Is that even possible? Do they shrink with age? They mustn't do or you wouldn't get so many men leaving their wives for younger women. The younger women wouldn't have it - all these old grey haired men and the case of the shrinking willy.

Christ, that was all a bit cryptic. In other words, back on the shag wagon.

Coffee Chiemi and I couldn't go walking this morning due to crap rainy weather so I came straight home and did some random chores - like clean the glass on the fireplace door, and vacuum pack the winter futons.

A parcel from amazon arrived mid morning. I ordered it so long ago I had almost forgotten about it. Quite easy when the order was dvds with the titles
1. Travel adventures - there goes a train, plane and bus
2. Big forestry and construction machines ONLY
3. Tractor adventures

Prime bribery treats for the devil child.

This evening we had the kindy summer festival. I got there at half five after feeding and bathing Ryu and leaving him in the capable (??) hands of the half blind Granny K. Her eye doesn't seem to be getting any better. She didn't want me to take her to the doctor's today. I don't know if the fertiliser was just really ugly shit or whether it takes longer to heal on vestling skin.

Anyway, hub arrived at the kindy just before six and we sat down with thirty other kids and their parents for curry and rice. Marina got covered in hers and I was going to change her clothes but luckily hub suggested I just leave it - just as well as her shaved ice went all down her top and leggings too. She smelt like a mixture of curry and strawberries. Nice.

After the curry dinner there was some taiko drumming which hub did - although he didn't know beforehand that he was going to be called upon. Then the kids all got three tickets for the shaved ice stand, fish small balloon with some water in it out of a tank stand, and throw a hoop over some lollies and chips stand. Great times. The night ended with some fireworks and a trip home with two overly tired children. They got quick showers and put to bed although Shou is still awake. I can hear him.

Better go have a wee sleep with him.

SDGH&QL

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Just another manic Thursday

Naughty naughty don't tell anyone but we've just had a naughty (ish) bath. It wasn't the full monty but enough to make me want to get up the courage to let hub get a leg over in the nearer rather than furtherer (?? farther away?? most farthest away) future. Perhaps more distant?? Don't tell anyone this either - but I get paid to teach people English. Gotta love Japan.

Ryu was being testy today - boob, shit, sleep, boob, shit, sleep.... repeat a hundred times. I realise that that is his job at the moment but christ, could he not give me half an hours peace. Any housework, dinner prep, English prep today was half done with him crying the house down. Needless to say I got jack shit done bar the essential stuff.

Hub had his business trip to Fukuoka. He was taking the train (closest station forty minutes drive away) so that he could get some sleep! Fair enough. I would have done the same thing. He didn't need to leave until after I had taken the kids to kindy - and was walking with coffee Chiemi. He got home at quarter to eight. Shou was still up but I sent them up to bed straight away and told hub to put the aircon on and close the door so Shou wouldn't hear my students come in. Shou was asleep in fifteen minutes - has been bloody ages since he's passed out that fast.

Granny K's eye is WORSE god damn it. I offered hub to take her to the skin doctor this morning seeing as he was going in that direction to catch the train - and then I would go pick her up. She declined saying she would sleep today and see how it was tomorrow?? How can you sleep a swollen eye off. Not a friggen hangover woman. So, if I had gone to pick her up today it would have been two hours of my and Ryu's day and I could well have gotten away with Ryu sleeping the whole time. But if I have to take her tomorrow then that is an hour each way, at least an hour wait, half an hour consultation and half hour to go and get whatever ten different types of medicines and drugs she gets prescribed. Awesome. Definitely no TGIF about that outing. In between all that Ryu will need a suck on some boob which will have to be in the carpark somewhere trying to get angle that hides big gaijin boobs from passing truck drivers - because I did nearly cause an accident trying to feed Ryu in the back of coffee Chiemi's car the other day.

Not quite as bad as expressing milk sitting in the passenger seat while going 100km on the highway. Been there, done that and at the time boobs were so damn sore I didn't care who saw me - or them.

I got a phone call today from NISSEN - a catalog / online shopping company. I have bought a bit of stuff from them before. This is the conversation I had...

NISSEN lady: This is blah blah from NISSEN.
Me: rightio
NISSEN lady: is this blah blah blah my name?
Me: Yes, speaking.
NISSEN lady: Thankyou so much for all the purchases blah blah.
Me: No worries, it was only a couple of cushion covers.
NISSEN lady: So, do you speak Japanese?
Me: Um, yes

What figgen language do you think we have been speaking for the last two and a half minutes?? Bloody inbred sales people. Is it a prerequisite for sales?? Ask customer lots of personal questions and then question their language ability??

In the end she wanted to sell me insurance. Bugger right off. I tried to tell her and she spoke over the top of me three times.

I hung up.

Well, think the boobs need to come out. For Ryu that is.

nighty night campers

SDGH&QL

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Shit bloody Shit

I was putting Shou to sleep and had nearly fallen asleep beside him when hub came in and whispered in big loud man whisper that there had been a huge earthquake in New Zealand. My god, I flew out of that bottom bunk and down the stairs like I weighed only 50kg. It's amazing how fear can scare weight into submission.

Got on the net and found out earthquake hit the bottom of the South Island and while it was big (7.8 magnitude) it was quite far off the coast so only things got rattled round a bit. Nothing too major from the information I can find. I come from Napier which is half way up the North Island.

So anyway, a sigh of relief. New Zealand has shitloads of earthquakes every year and Napier had massive, town destroying, life taking one in the 1960s. Earthquakes are scary things and I have gone from growing up in an earthquake drill, emergency kit ready country to Japan - another country with more than its fair share of earthquakes but with a completely different way of thinking. I remember the last biggish shake I experienced here I was THE ONLY one to move to safer place - in fact I ran out of the supermarket with a basket full of unpaid food. I realise its not good to run outside all the time but still,NOONE else moved at all. They all stood there saying oooh, that was quite big, omoshiroii ne kind of shit. SIGH.

Anyway, in other news today..

Granny K's funny eye was apparently 'fertiliser' !! She was putting it on the beans - not sure whether she was getting the dirt ready or putting it on the beans themselves - and then must have rubbed her eye. In a way it is a good thing because I now have reason for putting my foot down about having shit like fertiliser up and out of reach of the children - which it hasn't been. She has it lying any which place around the back of the house. Well, that's not entirely true but still I would like a mini shed where she could lock shit like that, the weed eater and the chainsaw away. The swelling seems to have gone down a bit and she says it doesn't hurt - looks a lot worse than it feels.

Coffee Chiemi and I went walking again and she popped round for coffee (surprise surprise) before my English class at four - which her son comes too. It is her hub's birthday today and his grandmother (who lives ten metres from their door) was spending the afternoon making treats like fried chicken for his dinner. Walking again tomorrow weather permitting.

I thought hub was arriving home late tonight but he turned up just before seven. The dinner and bath thing was over - albeit with a few meltdowns from me because Marina somehow managed to spill banana milk half way up the curtain and then a whole bottle of water all over herself and the tatami mats. Two actions that although they were Marina in the end, would have been avoided if Shou hadn't left a water bottle out without the lid on, or tried to entice Marina out onto the deck while she was still sitting down finishing her dinner. I can just see the 'you should no better, you're older' line coming out a lot over the next few years.

Hub put Marina down and I put Ryu down and then Shou - which was where I was when news man Maki came in to report on earthquake.

I feel bad about the mummy meltdowns this evening because I had one this morning too - but that was more aimed at hub. He had strapped both kids in their car seats and I was just getting Ryu and locking the front door. By the time I got to the car Shou had unbelted both himself and Marina and they were both jumping round in the drivers seat. Hub was in his car (parked behind mine) with Granny K, who he was taking to the doctors about her eye. He sat and watched the mayhem that followed when bribing and coaxing Shou and Marina didn't work. He was two metres away and sat there and watched the unraveling of a mummy meltdown. As he drove out the drive, after I had rugby hold carried Marina around the car and into her car seat, I yelled out 'thanks very much darling' - he is lucky he didn't get the finger. I was so close.

I am so mature sometimes.

I then proceeded to drive the entire way to kindy with the hazard lights on. Thanks Shou.

Only imminent hazard was the gaijinwife.

SDGH&QL

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Masked Heroes and Cute Babies

The WHOLE family was up at five this morning. Even Granny K who went to the fields to do some plowing or whatever it is she does before the day got too hot. Kids fed, dressed and off to kindy and I come home to do round of house stuff, and sort Ryu and I out for shopping trip. Coffee Chiemi (would appear she know has a screen name) came to pick us up at nine - although arrived ten minutes early so Ryu was screaming and I was running round with a towel and jeans. All good though, she seemed quite happy to pass me my clothes from the couch. Yes, that means she came straight in the house and was hanging out in the lounge when I got out of the shower. Thank god I didn't do my naked moonwalk down the hall like I usually do!!

We went to big department store and spent few hours shopping and then had some lunch before heading to home centre to purchase a scrubbing brush and broom, which were the only things that I actually had on my list. Can't go out and only come back with shite like that though, so I felt need to purchase...
Shoes for Shou - he requested ones with super heroes on them and I searched high and low for ones his size. He had suggested that perhaps Marina would like some new shoes too - maybe ones with the masked rider on them!!

I got her a cute skirt instead...

Had to get mummy something too...

Got daddy something too - a couple of t-shirts and some tickets for the summer jumbo lottery - which I might add we are going to win.

Got home and Ryu had some tummy time...

And I think he even got some head airtime...

At his one month check up the doctor said I could start tummy time to strengthen his neck. Today was his first time.

I don't usually post pictures of shopping purchases so sorry for the random insert there. Gotta try everything once I guess. I tried marrying a Japanese man once... Look where that has gotten me!

Hub just asked where the rubber bands were - I said the fridge. He opened the fridge and looked inside - no doubt wondering what kind of strange woman keeps rubber bands in the fridge. Or perhaps he just thought it was a foreign thing. Keep them cold - they stretch better. I meant that they were round one of the bulldog clip magnets on the fridge...

Granny K has just popped her head round the door to say she is having a bath - she has a swollen eye which she claims is from some crazy insect she got attacked by in the field yesterday. I noticed it this afternoon but it wasn't nearly so bad. Hub has told her he'll take her to the hospital tomorrow morning if it gets worse. Can't really imagine a one eyed granny K so lets hope it gets better.

Best be off - watching 'za gyoten news' on TV - woman who weighs 190 kg is on a diet to try and get back to her originall 55kg!! Love these programs. Inspiring, but at same time make me feel not like such a lard ass - which is bad as am a lard ass and do need to lose weight!! Off walking again tomorrow morning :)

SDGH&QL

Monday, 13 July 2009

Chigaihouken

Chigaihouken (治外法権) - extraterritorial

This is what hub has been using lately to describe our house - and from what I can gather he means that the rules surrounding our life, our house are different to those of everyone else he knows.

ie: gaijinwife rules and gaijinwife reigns supreme.

Good enough translation don't you think :)

We are just having some 'couple reconnect time' (think I read that on okaasanandme.blogspot.com). This time includes a 3% alcoholic beverage for me and some homemade umeshu for hub, plus some cheddar flavored crisps from heaven - FBC. The kids were unusually well behaved this evening, hence why hub and I actually still feel like talking to each other!!

Picked the kids up from kindy after I had had a long talk to good friend in NZ. Her eldest boy is the same age as Marina and her second boy is four or five months old. She seems so chilled out about the whole mothering thing and I asked her what she did regarding discipline. She said she tries to distract oldest son with other things or ignores bad behavior. She has NEVER smacked him on the bum. I was in awe. So today, when Shou and Marina came home I put on my over genki happy mummy face and we all had a great time. Yes, I gave them a small iceblock before dinner but hey, it was 100% apple juice and really who gives a shit. Not big enough to spoil their appetite. Not sweet enough to have them jumping off the ceiling.

Shou ate ALL his tea on his own. It took a while but he did it, and without much coaxing from me. Marina of course scoffed hers back and proceeded to eat half of hub's when he got back at six. I put them all in the bath and hub got them dry and changed. Absolutely loving those baby baths. Ryu loves them too. Can't wait till he starts smiling so that I actually know he is liking it - at the moment the only sign I get is that he isn't crying!!

Coffee Chiemi and I went for another mummy pushing pushchair walk this morning. It must have been in the high 20 degrees already - and we left at 8am. We took the steep street (slab of concrete winding up side of hill) and I actually came home feeling it. As we were nearing the top of the climb a bit of a wannabe yakuza car came up with two wannabe chinpiras in it and turned into the old junior high grounds - there is nothing there now. Just empty paddock. I thought it odd and also best that we push pushchairs fast down other side. This was closely followed by another car with an elderly couple that turned into the same paddock.

The mind boggles.

I wonder what business they had together. Were the couple going up to meet their sons for a brunch picnic? Were they all going to check on their hash investment? Are the chinpiras bribing the vestlings out of money?

I obviously have far too much free time on my hands to even be thinking such things.

Was very odd though.

Anyway, coffee Chiemi is picking me up tomorrow morning and we are heading out of Kunimi for some out of Kunimi experience - which is almost as good as outer body experience but with nice coffee.

In other news..

Actually don't think there is any.

Nighty night.

SDG&QL

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Pool Time

The house is quiet! Seems like a miracle to get some quiet on a Sunday. Even hub has gone to bed. I am pretty beyond tired but I really needed some no kiddy or hub time. Doing the kiddy thing by yourself is hard yakka but sometimes husbands can just hinder the whole happy family thing - as stupid as that may sound.

It was scorching hot today so the new paddling pool got blown up and Shou and Marina got their gears off and ran round naked in the garden for an hour before lunch and then again late afternoon. Shou is learning how to put his head under the water at kindy and he can do it now, fine. The thing is he thinks that Marina needs to be able to as well and therefore tries to teach her by holding her head under. It's a plastic ten dollar paddling pool with about ten cm of water in it, but still she flace plants the bottom, coming up wide eyed and spluttering a bit but otherwise all smiles. Shou got yelled at by me, and told that any more of those antics and the pool was going away. Hub's way of telling him off was to say..

'do that again to Marina and I will come in and do the same thing to you'

???

I asked him if he actually thought doing that was good parenting - he said he probably wouldn't but that he just said it to scare Shou.

???
Anyway, I am all talked out on the topic. There was a bit of cheerful banter with hub saying things like 'as per usual you think what you do is right and whatever I do is wrong', 'If I'm doing it all wrong then I just wont say anything to the kids at all.'

No argument, just a bit of friendly exchange of opinion. I think we will just have to agree to disagree on some issues.

The day was very nice though, albeit chaotic, mad and completely crazy. I don't think there were any major meltdowns but that was because mummy was on situation difusion patrol, if there is such a thing. I think I can confidently say that hub lacks the skills to be able to read into a situation and difuse it before it gets messy - in relation to the kids and me ;p

Shit, just had to deal to roach. Thankfully had handy tissue box strategically placed so could bash living daylights out of it. Have only had a couple this year but are having major issues with the flying ants. Well, that's what hub says they are. They are everywhere outside and I must have hosed about a thousand off the windows first thing this morning. You can get a spray here called 'mushikonasu' (no more insects). Complete bollocks. The insects in Kunimi thrive on this shit and I believe do infact multiply by the millions. Is just big spray company scam.

I was asked in a comment about post-pregnancy body. Stop reading now if you don't give a shit about leaky boobs and flabby tummies.

Post Baby Body

Weight - In order of babies I put on 12 then 15 and then 16 kilos during pregnancy. Lost it all post first baby but only half post Marina. I therefore started as a warthog before Ryu and ended up a water buffalo. I have lost 10 kilos in the five weeks since Ryu was born - but this includes 4 kilogram baby and gunky shit. Ryu is putting on 54 grams a day so in theory I should be able to lose at least this -which would mean 350 grams a week. The thing is that when I breastfeed I tend to want to eat - anything really, chips, chocolate, the side of the table, the remote control. I am going to resurrect Billy and his god forsaken bootcamp out from under the stairs tomorrow. Things need to get serious.

Boobs - They weren't small to start with and now they are just silly. Quite a bit bigger than Ryu's head in fact. No damn wonder really that he likes snuggling up to them. They haven't been perky for years so I haven't really noticed how much saggier they have become. All this sucking them dry can't be good though - especially as some of the nursing bras I have are just token bits of material made to house a milk pad so you don't leak all over your clothes. I'm not quite sure if I have anything that fits them that will let me get through an hour of Billy and kickboxing round the lounge.

Fuck it, I've just turned round and the supposed bashed roach is gone. Tis no wonder they are the only creatures that would survive a nuclear blast. That or they play dead really well.

Back to body hangups..

Tummy - I got attractive stretchmarks with all pregnancies. Third time round I expanded to a new level and got a new set. Awesome. They fade but I won't be parading round the streets of Kunimi in a bikini. I know I was heavier to start with and put on more weight this time anyway but I have very becoming flabby lower tummy that I didn't get to this extent the first two times. It is the main thing behind me not wanting to let hub get a leg over yet. I don't usually have hangups about my body enough to give me a complex about shagging - especially as hub really doesn't care (in a good way). But this jiggly bit of tummy is gross. Don't think billy will fix it in a hurry so I am going to have to get over it, or turn out the lights or...

War wounds - I didn't get the mirror out to have a look but I think they are all OK now. Obviously the lack of shagging means I can't tell how 'well' the wounds were fixed up, and thats something else that adds to the pure joy of wanting to get back on the shag wagon - not.

The aftermath - there is a name for the bleeding and discharge you get following childbirth. Can't remember but is a right pain in the ass, not literally though. I think that finally, five weeks on, mine has finally stopped. It went from very heavy the first week to heavy the second week and then not that much after that but still enough to warrant purchasing feminine hygiene products.

Bum grapes - definitely a topic of discussion the first week or so. After coming out of the clinic though i didn't use my supply of bum bullets or cream. It was just laziness on my part. They have however been sucked back up and not sore at all. Yay yay, because they were pretty gross.

Hair - my hair is naturally curly/afro. It lost some of its curl after Shou and Marina but this has come back this time. I don't think I'm losing too much this time round either but then I can't remember when that happens - is it straight after or have I got it coming up. I lost a bit with Shou.

Well, I think that's it. Your body gets a pounding going through three pregnancies and three births in three years. I have no illusions of getting my 18 year old body back but getting even a resemblance of the body I had five years ago is going to require some serious effort and a lot of backing away from the Australian cheddar.

SDGH&QL

Saturday, 11 July 2009

jack shit

The kids are at kindy, hub is asleep upstairs, Ryu is asleep downstairs and I am here. It is lashing rain in true form of the rainy season. Needs to rain as much as it can while it is still officially the rainy season. This much rain means however that my favorite route to kindy has to be driven with care - or not at all if hub had his way. Not because he is worried about us getting covered by a land slide but because the big puddles mean his beautiful hub caps get dirty. I turned that way yesterday morning anyway and decided to keep going and seeing as car would get a beating anyway decided may as well make it a bit fun. We hooned through the puddles, water flying, that big fooowuuush noise when you drive through lots of water. All fun and games.

After the kindy drop off yesterday coffee Chiemi and I went for a walk. The rain held off and we managed to walk and gossip for a good forty five minutes. Think we are going to head out for some mummy de-stress coffee and shopping sometime next week. She will drive this time as she forgot to mention when we took my car last week, that she gets car sick when she isn't driving and that her baby seat is so bloody complicated that when she goes in anyone elses car she just holds her baby. At one stage she asked to drive so she wouldn't throw up and I went in the back with her baby - all the while Ryu passed out in his car seat beside us.

After getting home, did a quick round of house stuff and then spent the rest of the entire whole complete day doing absolutely jack shit. Well, if watching Outrageous Fortune episodes back to back counts as jack shit that is. After watching so much kiwiana I get a shock back to reality when I've finished. Oh my god, almost forgot was living in house with straw mats, little old Japanese woman, and pachinko playing husband surrounded by rice paddies. House surrounded by paddies - not husband. Actually don't think there has been any ilicit pachinko playing going on lately. He would have to be pretty damn brave to pull that kind of shit after the goings on of the last few weeks.

Got another couple of parcels today. Loving it. One was a blue hand knitted jumper for Ryu from his great great Auntie in New Zealand. It is actually very cute and I will in fact put him in it if I can get his big head through the headhole. The other parcel was some more kiwiana dvds from blog friend in Tokyo. Thank you thank you thank you!! More excuses to spend more of my days doing jack shit. Actually is good for booby time - and there has been a lot of that lately. I can't remember but do babies have a growth spurt at about five or six weeks?? Ryu slept almost the entire day yesterday and only woke up to suck back booby, burp, throw a bit up, shit and go back to sleep. I thought I would be up all night last night after a day like that but surprisingly we weren't.

Oooh, we did do something else yesterday. Drove to hubs office. Not to check up on him but to deliver something he had forgotten. He was going to city for work but not leaving till eleven so we went in the morning. Ryu of course slept the whole way and I drank diet coke and belted out michael jackson tunes - they have nearly done their dash for the moment though.

Hub got home in time for the bath thing - although I put all three kids in and he did the changing. Actually come to think of it he had bath with Shou and I did Ryu and then Marina. Marina was being very cute - which was nice as of late she has started to get very defiant. She LAUGHS when she gets a smack on the bum or told off. Think I might have to start a grounding system already. Whey they get older and wonder why I wont let them go out with friends I will tell them they are grounded from that time they tried to stick all of mummy's english flashcards in the video recorder when they were two.

Hub was meant to be doing the farmer thing this morning but the rain has put a stop to that. Wonder if he'll want to pop out for lunch...

dewa dewa

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Business Trip Shmisness Trip

Got the kids off to kindy, got a couple of parcels in the mail, spent the morning sorting house out and trying to settle a very wide awake Ryu. Met up with one Chiemi for lunch and the other for coffee here in the arvo. Hadn't seen lunch Chiemi (solar panal mans wife) for a while so that was good to catch up. Coffee Chiemi has been having some issues lately and we have been seeing a bit of each other - and mailing.

She mailed last night to ask if I knew such and such a person - a woman. I didn't. She found a suspicsious text from her on her hubs phone. He usually has his keypad locked and she doesn't usually look - think must be result of me telling her I check hubs from time to time. She got in bit of panic and confronted him last night. Found out over coffee that all OK but that her hub said to her that her actions of late must be because she is hanging out here a bit - this is the same hub who keeps all his overtime pay for his own pocket money - seeing as he was the one doing the overtime. Whatever. Just forget about the wife at home with a five year old, three year old and four month old doing 'SAHM' overtime. He thinks my hub is a true survivor for putting up with me. I think hub is too sometimes but I definately don't think I should be voted off the island.

Christ, if I leave the island it will be on a luxury cruiser with loads of Gin and tonics and twenty year old deck hands - if you have deck hands on a cruiser?

After Chiemis on parade I had to get dinner sorted (lasagne but not much love love) and English class stuff. My eight girls arrived at half four and it was a better class than last week although I had to tell one girl off because I am sick of them talking to me like I'm not their damn teacher. Am going to start being scary teacher - or at least give me some respect and do what I ask teacher. During the class hub rang. Hub, who was supposed to becoming home straight after work because have evening English class too, said that he suddenly got told he had business trip to city tomorrow and would be late tonight making whatever shite he had to make to take with him. I am so mature that I hung up on him. And then rang him back and asked him to please (may have omitted that bit acutally) be home by eight - when my English class starts. Yes, I have Granny K to ask but Shou would probably still be awake and on his own that would be fine but what if Ryu is nutting out too??

At half five had to leave a screaming Ryu with Granny K while I went to pick the sproglets up. They were super cute, well Marina was. Shou came running straight out to me while Marina cleaned up the toys, as per the teachers request. Good little girl. Gotta love little girls. Gotta love little boys too but Shou wasn't doing what he was asked at twenty months. I'm not sure he'll do what he is asked ever in fact.

They both ate their pasta - I tried lasagane on Marina a few months ago and she threw it on the floor. Just goes to show you just have to keep trying with foods when they are little. Was mighty fine lasagane though.

Showered the kids and then finally sat down to feed Ryu - who just about sucked my nipples off he was so hungry. Shou and Marina were quiet for a full twenty minutes while they were entertained by the Wiggles. Marina went to bed, Shou played roads, and Ryu sucked the other nipple off while I waited for daddy to get home. He got home at five past eight - my English students were here already. Ryu had been put down five minutes before they arrived and was / and is still asleep.

Despite hub being home practically the whole of the lesson he made no effort to try and bribe Shou away from the room I teach in. I wasn't about to be angry mummy so Shou sat in with me, putting stickers on my back and drawing on the tatami. Excellent lesson. All the while hub was in the kitchen three metres away grilling damn fish and hence stinking out entire house WHEN there was a beautiful lasagne waiting for him. SIGH.

Anyway, they are all asleep now. Long may it last. I am meeting coffee Chiemi after I drop the kids off at kindy tomorrow morning. We are going to start pushchair walking in the mornings. She lives right beside the kindy. We will be able to have good talk while we push our babies round the paddies.

I think Granny K is getting hub to hoe the fields on Saturday. She plants beans every year - every kind under the sun. Hub doesnt even really like beans so I wonder where the need to plant row after row came from.

She has been quite helpful lately - seriously. She seems to be as annoyed as I am at how many times I get the kiddy dinner, bath and bed routine on my own while hub is doing overtime. Could just be because she's worried we're close to doing a runner though!!

SDGH&QL

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Two Testis - Thank God.

Well, I definately didn't wake up as super mummy this morning as planned. Think I was more bitchy sleep deprived mummy. Shou woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed at ten to five!!Could mummy please repair his airplane - which was two bits of rolled up newspaper stuck together with tape in shape of cross. I took him downstairs, put the plane through a vigorous warrent of fitness and then taped up the bits in need of repair. Then tried to persuade him back upstairs - he could even come in with mummy if he was quiet and didn't wake the baby. No go.

So bitchy sleep deprived mummy put him outside, on the deck. In form of time out I guess he should have stayed out there for three minutes - a minute for each year of his age. Isn't that the recommendation? If so then means I could tell hub to bugger off for 44 minutes at a time!!

Finally managed to get back upstairs where mummy got told to go away and hub was flavor of the month. He slept for another hour thank god.

Got them to kindy and came home to clean, get English ready and get dinner sorted before heading off to meet friend for lunch.

Met her for some corn, ebi (shrimp) and blow torched (aburi) something or rather. I am so predictable. I may venture out and have some salmon or squid but this is my usual menu. Went to the kiddy shop and bought Marina some shoes and shorts. Ryu was a gem and slept the whole time until he had to get weighed for his one month check!

Got to the clinic early and needed a pee. Didn't have to do pee test last time for the one month checks but thought would ask anyway. YES - so away I go and my god, how easy it is to pee in a cup when you haven't got a nine month pregnant belly to contend with. Had blood taken too and the dreaded 'internal'. Not as bad as was expecting and doctor gave me clean bill of health and said 'nandemo shitte ii yo' - you can do anything now. Hmmmm. And I don't think he was talking about going back to my rigid rock climbing regime.

The doctor there to give the babies check ups tried very hard with her English - despite hearing me talk in Japanese to the nurse. However, the only English I really understood was

He has two testis.

This is good news, very good news indeed. For a while there I thought Ryu was going round with just one big ball and not two. What a relief. His hips are fine, no lumps in his tummy, neck on the way to holding big head up rah rah. And for the major stats - he is now 4900 grams, so has put on over a kilogram in one month. He is 3cm longer and his head has grown 8cm - which I don't think can be right surely?? Especially as his man chest has shrunk by 5cm.

After check we hightailed it home in time for a bit of boob before English. Class went fine. Hub rang half way though to say he might be late but would definately be home as early as possible tomorrow night when I have my 8pm class. I asked if he could please come home early on the odd night when I didn't have anything. He didn't protest and was home tonight just before six.

I got the all OK for having a bath again from the doctor - here they tell you not to have one for the first four weeks after birth. I even put Ryu in the big bath - with me. The first time. It was lovely. Shou and Marina were clean and running round the house with dad chasing them trying to put their jim jams on. But I didn't care. I had a beautiful little baby all cute and rolley and naked. Ryu loved it.

Hub has just gone up to bed and I think maybe I should too. Need to get into routine of getting to bed earlier. Am sick of self waking up as bitchy mummy.

My old work place rung up this morning and offered me a days interpreting next Tuesday. Thank god I had Ryu as an excuse. I haven't interpreted for academic related meetings for long time so would have been very scary - as is summer review for the univeristy and all the big wigs are there. Also, the university is currently on one week break due to three cases of swine flu being reported. Obviously admin staff haven't been sent home though. So, while it was nice to feel loved and wanted I turned it down.

Seriously time to sleep.

SDGH&QL