Thursday, 19 August 2010

Movers Have Arrived

http://gaijinwife.wordpress.com/


I tried to make this a link but it kept getting direct to search engine.

I have decided to keep the blog public and just have password protected posts when I need to.  Password will be sent out to people that commented and emailed. I still haven't figured out how to move posts over to wordpress yet. This blog will be author accessible only in a couple of days.

If you have me on your blogroll and want to keep me there please change my address to gaijinwife.wordpress.com

SDGH&QL

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Blog Changes

Yesterday's post has been deleted. Thank you for all your comments.

In 48 hours I will be restricting this blog to invited readers only while I decide where to move it. Wordpress? Typepad?  I have just made a wordpress account and will try and get that sorted or else I will use typepad or livejournal. Any suggestions or advice about the move would be greatly appreciated.

I know this sounds very presumptuous but I can only 'invite' 100 readers. I know that around or more than that number of readers read gaijinwife on a regular basis.

If you would like me to 'invite' you please email me at gaijinwife at gmail dot com  - or if you don't mind having your email on a comment please comment to this post.

If I get more than 100 requests I will give preference to followers and regular commenters. Sorry if that seems unfair.

If I know you please don't think I will include you automatically. You may be sick of all my shit and therefore I will only include you if you ask me to.

Sorry for the shove around, especially as I plan on changing blogs soon anyway. I'm just not technically with it enough to get all this sorted in one night. Obviously, with all the time I have on my hands what with my two older kids being in day care 24/7 I may have loads of time tomorrow to sort it out. We'll see aye.

SDGH&QL

PS - I can invite you through any email address you state but you can only view the blog if you have a google account - which is very easy to set up and wont mean sending loads of money to an offshore account.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Back to Life

The ancestors got escorted back to the grave yesterday after hub got home from work. Ryu now has his room back to himself and for the first time in four nights had an uninterrupted sleep. Now that he is more mobile he will stand up after I put him down the first time. Had to rock him to sleep but if he is tired anyway, and then I clean his ears (he loves it) then he usually drops off in a couple of minutes. This is good news for the plane trip and our trip home. I never thought I'd live to see the day when I am glad that I can rock my baby to sleep. Up until now it was a definite no go. Plane trip followed by three different motels and being able to rock him to sleep will help I think.

Of course I could just ask dad to write a prescription for horse tranquilizers and work out a toddler dose for those.

But I'm trying. Trying to turn over a new mummy leaf and be all bloody positive and rays of sunshine. I even thought very briefly yesterday that perhaps I would start an 'art hour' after they get home from kinder - or half an hour - where we sit down and do something that I have actually organized - as opposed to just throwing them some crayons and bits of paper.  This would mean I could push dinner back to six and their bed time to half seven or eight. Marina is going through a period of getting up at half four. Shou did it at the same age. Marina's isn't as bad as Shou though because she is quiet. Yesterday she didn't even wake hub and I up - just snuck on past our room, down the stairs, and into Granny K's room :D That's a good girl.

Managed to turn the house round after the fiasco that was Obon. Futons got put away, blankets put into vacuum air sucked bags and stored rah rah. Got a good hours sleep with Ryu - bliss. Or rather, at the same time as Ryu but in my own bed.

Did level 2 of the Shred - arrrrrrrrrrrggggggggghhhhhhh. I think I was feeling guilty from not being able to do it on Sunday. Was punishing myself. And punishment it was. Shit woman. It's  OK for you, you spend half the workout walking round talking and not doing the exercises. The other two girls don't even break a sweat and here I am in a puddle of sweaty yoga matt stickiness. Heinous. But very satisfying. Dare I say it but I think I might be starting to crave that post workout genki skinny feeling of elation.

Did it again this morning. I am not sore in any particular part of my body. There is a general 'I've done exercise' haze of throbby soreness throughout but nothing in particular. This means that the first level has done it's job. This means that I am building muscle. This means that there is no weight loss yet because I am building extremely heavy muscle. This means that one day soon I am going to look in the mirror and realize I have gone straight from flummy to Madonna.

I'm going to have to stop myself at fabulous first and calm down a bit.

But that is a wee way away yet.

Oh, and in other very exciting news. Shou has gone two nights in a row without a night nappy. Praise the lord. Long may it last.

Spoke to mum yesterday. She started round two of chemo yesterday and had gone down for an appointment at the oncology unit first. Everything is going 'as you would expect' - but on the good end. As in, for a 60 year old with her prognosis she is doing on the better end. No doubt due to the good state of her health before this all started. I still really don't get concrete answers although apparently my dad told my brother that if mum can last two years then she will be in that small portion of people (her age and with her prognosis) who can last up to five years. I'm not quite sure what this means and how it is meant to make us feel but! Really it means that their is a bigger statistical chance that she wont last two years?


Anyhoo, Time to sort the house out for today, get something ready for English this afternoon.

SDGH&QL

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Can Someone Cancel Obon Next Year Pretty Fuckin Pleeeeeease

(this is a very long post - be warned)

Can someone cancel obon next year - pretty fuckin please and with a cherry on top.

For days leading up to Obon, during Obon and a few days after Kunimi (and I imagine most rural areas in Japan) get overtaken by trendy clothed city folk with their out of town car plates - Nagoya, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Yamaguchi, Kochi, Kumamoto and Kitakyushu just to name a few. Definitely a large portion of Kunimi moved to Kitakyushu as there were shitloads of Kita Q cars around.

Obon festivities are usually held at one's 'jikka' - or the family home, where there will be a 'butsudan' or family alter and nearby a 'haka' or family grave. Traditionally the 'chonan' or eldest son resides in the 'jikka' and either lives close to or with the 'vestling bitch' or vestling bitch - quite commonly referred to as the 'shuutome' or mother in law or 'ofukuro' - which doesn't mean nice bag (although that wouldn't be a bad translation) or owl, but rather is endearment term for one's own mother. And that's enough of the Japanese lesson - some of these words it is just easier to put in Japanese though so now that you have mastered Obon Japanese 101...

For non jikka people Obon usually means packing up the car and driving in horrendous traffic to return to almost abandoned looking house in rice paddy town in some rural part of Japan, to light incense at the 'haka' and the 'butsudan' to welcome back the spirits of their dead ancestors. It also usually means having to endure home cooked foodstuffs by vestling bitch who needs to have an audience at least once a year for her culinary skills, which she herself believe to be of a much higher caliber than the people consuming her enoki mushroom miso soup and pickled cucumbers.

For those unfortunate enough to actually be the 'jikka', Obon is a fun filled weekend of cleaning, cooking, airing old futons, airing old bags... no shit. That's not right. She does need a good belt with one of those futon dust away thrashers though. It also means, especially if you are the wife married to the eldest son (as opposed to the eldest son himself who can get away with jack shit), A LOT of stress. If you happen to be a gaijin wife then add in all that extra 'fuuuuuuuuuuuuck, vesting bitch has left fifty cups on the table for me to use, ten sets all of varying pattern and expensive lookingness - which do I use for which guests and am I allowed to use one myself or should I be lapping beer from the cat dish outside?

Oh and hub is the THIRD son and we have all the 'jikka' responsibilities.

SO anyway, enough faffing around, on to Obon.

Saturday morning was spent as you would expect. Hub took the kids to kinder for their half day and then went straight to the fish markets to pick up some paua (awabi) and some sea snails (sazae). He had been saying all week that he and brother will be drinking beer and bbq-ing paua on the deck. Can't deny the man really. He only sees his brother about three times a year. Do you know how much the bastards cost? He came home with a grand total of THREE Paua - $60 (3,500 yen) for three and $15 for three snails.

While he was at the market I did day six of the Shred. He came home and the cleaning began. The house wasn't a mess but there were lots of things that needed doing. The kind of things that you can't do the day before because with three small children you would just end up having to do them again anyway. Floors, windows (the ones the kids have left rows of smeary dirty hands on), raking the leaves (the ONE tree in our yard drops a million leaves a day), the genkan (front door and shoe area), the kitchen and the bathroom - which even though I did do the other day hub required it to be done again. Fair enough. I did it when I had my shower after shredding, raking, vacuuming, polishing and wiping on and wiping off.

Ryu had a slight temperature so I was allowed out of the house alone to go and pick up supplies for dinner. What a treat. I haven't been longer distances than the local supermarket on my own in ages. Diet cola in the drink holder, Macey on the speakers, aircon on 19 and away we go. Shopping during Obon is like shopping the day before Christmas - fucking chaos. I had a list of what I needed and I was striding down those isles, a woman on a mission. First up - 5,000 yen ($80) tray of ready cooked things for dinner. These are usually only on sale during Obon, golden week and new years - the times when people come to stay and people can't be faffed cooking loads of food for guests. Mushrooms of course - for Granny K's miso soup, beer, beer, beer, grapes that cost more than a months wages for some poor woman sewing the nike label onto jump suits in China, and supplies for breakfast.

Got home and Shou and Marina had been picked up from kinder and were already in the midst of water slide heaven...

Eldest son, wife, daughter, son in law and two kids arrived at three. They dropped some bags in the front door and then headed off the the 'haka' with a bunch of flowers, a big bottle of water, some incense and some matches. They arrive back, pray at the 'butsudan' and then hub cranks up the BBQ for the paua and snails. Somebody has to go pick up the sashimi that has been ordered and I am the likely contender so offer to take both Shou and Marina. I just about vomit in the fish shop as is hundred years old, scodey and although I know the fish are fresh that day I really think the women would have trouble meeting osh kosh safety standards or whatever the hygiene equivalent is.  About twelve cats are waiting for fish too. Get in line buddy. I'm the one with the cash. Take sashimi and bag of fish bits home past the store to get butter. When I got back to the car with the fish Shou was on (my) phone to hub. I didn't even know he knew how to use my phone. Hub needed butter for the BBQ-ed paua.

Home James and hub, eldest son and my nieces husband (nephew in law??) are on the deck with paua and beer. Shou joins them (what a bloke) and us women and small children hide inside with the aircon. We aren't sitting inside painting our fuckin nails. They are on toddler and baby watch while I set about getting dinner sorted - which is just really setting things out, cutting fruit, arranging food and the likes but still ... we DO NOT need the list of orders being barked at us from the men. Ooooooooooi, bitches inside there, get us some chopsticks. Ooooooooooooi, woman, I need some paper towels. Ooooooooooooi, cook me some eggs. When hub poked his head in the door and asked after dinner and was it coming out to them on a silver fuckin plater my sister in law looked at me and I was very restrained in saying that I thought he had two of his own hands and legs and could they not somehow propel him inside to pick up a plate himself? I think I may have been holding a meat cleaver and a frypan at the time I said it.

The rest of the evening was pretty much chaos. Kids were fed and put in the bath. Shou and Marina hadn't had naps as I was hoping I could get them down as easily as I did when Illahee was here on Tuesday. I asked hub to please not mention the Obon dancing that night that started at 8pm. Shou wanted to go but he was in such a state and if hub refrained form mentioning it for a few hours I may well just get away with getting Shou to bed. Hub was a bit pished. In an effort to bribe Shou into doing something he played the Obon dancing card. He would take him, IN THREE HOURS, to the drumming and dancing, IF he stopped trying to turn the Paua over with the tongs.

Shou was soooooooo tired by 8pm but no way was he going to bed. He left with hub and then eldest son and Granny K walked off down the road to it too. Ryu was a complete bastard all night.
I know he doesn't look like much of a bastard in this pic but it is 10pm and him and I are the only ones still up. Well him, me and baikinman peeking out from behind the fire. Didn't get him to sleep until 2am and then he was awake again at 5am. There was a lot of huha involved with the baby cot and such and I doubt very much that eldest son will be back to stay for at least four years, by which time all kids should be sleeping on their own. How very fuckin painful.

Anyway, can't say I was in my most sprightliest of moods this morning. That aside, I got up and sorted out breakfast buffet of scrambled eggs, sausages, potato salad, rolls, fruit and assortment of drinks with assortment of 50 glasses to choose from. Everybody up and about by half seven and Granny K comes in with rice and miso soup. I was too tired to fight but we had had this conversation two days ago and then yesterday.

Two days ago...
Me: What's happening with breakfast on the Sunday?
Granny K: I'll make rice and soup.
Hub: You did that two years ago when they stayed and nobody ate it cause they are a bread and fruit for breakfast family.
Granny K: But they like my miso soup.
Hub: OK then, will you fix breakfast on Sunday.
Granny K: Yes.
Hub: OK Katy, you don't need to do anything. Is that OK mum?
Granny K: Yes.
Me: Sweet as. Score. You Beauty .... ..... .....

Yesterday Morning before I go shopping....
Me: So I don't need to get anything for breakfast then?
Hub: No, mum is making it all.
Granny K: actually you do it Katy. Get the eggs and stuff and I'll just do soup for dinner.
Me: OK, no worries. Ittekimaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaasu.

This morning - I make lovely buffet. Everyone awakes and comes in here and just as hub is telling them buffet breakfast of fabulous looking spread is self service Granny K walks in with rice and soup already dished out in bowls. This kind of thing has happened a lot before but it is amplified by fact that I have had very little sleep and Marina and Shou are outside in their pajamas without shoes on trying to catch crabs in the meter deep concrete drain by the neighbors house - while hub 'supervises' them from 30 meters away and behind a tree, a deck and a wall.

Shou spends a good half hour explaining the intricacies of stag beetles to his two year old second cousin ??, it is his cousin's son so what would that be?? And yes the beetles do get a ride on the dump truck. All six of them.

Ryu refuses to have a morning nap and must be running on near empty the poor lad. He is soooooo tired. Just as eldest son and co are about to leave Granny K's older brother, the priest who married hub and I, arrives decked out in priestly gears. He was 'in the neighborhood' doing priestly stuff and thought would drop in.
From left - Granny K, the microwave, Granny K's brother the priest, nephew in law (??), niece, eldest son holding two year old grandson, sister in law, Marina.

Just as they are about to pull out of the drive way Granny K's younger sister (also her cousin - as Granny K's mother died and her father shacked up with the younger sister) turns up with her husband and their eldest son and HIS family of fours. Bloody hell.

More drinks to sort out, another forty minutes of talking to people I don't know (I know the younger sister and her husband but have never met their offspring before) while trying to stop Shou from driving ALL his toy trucks over the younger sister's husband's head.


Guest are all gone and I am thankful that this kind of Obon only happens every couple of years. Hopefully. I had a bit of a meltdown this afternoon. Ryu didn't sleep again this morning and I was sick of having him constantly at my side. Poor thing. Anyway, I saw Shou pull the cat by it's tail and I lost it - I uptipped their paddling pool and put it to dry, turned off the hose and packed up my clingy baby and drove off the premises. But before I left I noticed an envelope stuck to the fridge...
From my sister in law. She had tried to give me 10,000 yen the night before. I tried to refuse, she shoved it down my top (seriously), so I blind sided her and gave it back to her husband. This says thank you for having us. It's not much but please use this money to buy something yummy. Take care of yourself in this friggen heat.

If she is going to resort to such measures then I will go ahead and pocket the money.

Thanks SIl.

And that is the end of Obon for us. Soooooo over it. Tomorrow will be spent airing out futons again before they get put away, doing shitloads of washing and

sleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeping.

And well done anybody that actually read all that rambling shit.

SDGH&QL

Friday, 13 August 2010

You can't just barge in!

Last night hub came home from drinking with the lads quite pished and frisky, so much so that it made me wonder what the lads had been talking about. I kept his hands at bay while we had a beer and watched some TV. He was, in his own words, trying to give me a 'nyugan special kensa' - special breast cancer examination. Sigh. My husband is 45 people!!

Anyway, it was quite obvious that there was to be an international relations meeting before the night ended. He was just so much friskier than usual that I got a bit of a shock and actually said to him, in English,

'You can't just barge in'....

meaning him barging in through the saloon doors. It was all just a bit fast.
The only bit he picked up on was the 'barge in' - 'bar-gin' which is the katakana way of saying 'virgin'. He looked at me as if I had just made a comment about self being virgin - or something similar which I feel doesn't need repeating. But fuck it made me laugh. One of those giggles you can't stop even though the situation reeeeeeaaaaaaaaaly doesn't call for it. Tis a wonder the meeting got concluded at all :D

So that's enough about that.

Today was not the day it was meant to be. I walked the kiddies to kinder, came home and did the Shred and then spoke to a friend in NZ - who was due with her third (in three years) yesterday.  Anyway, she is still with child but hopefully not for too much longer. I had emailed my friend the Blender (Belinda) to see if she wanted to meet for sushi seeing as I was planning on going over to the baby shop to get a new kiddy futon cover for Shou's nap futon set. He (quite enjoyably according to the teachers) ripped it last week. As I was standing in my towel after post-shred shower Granny K comes in. I actually have a bra on and towel round waist and am still on phone to friend.

The middle son is coming home from Shikoku and will be here in two hours. Heeeeeeellllloooooooo!!! The middle son is fucken useless to be perfectly honest. Never rings Granny K up, didn't even know we had a third child - but that's hub's fault too, and even missed his fathers houji (17 year anniversary of his death) last year - or was it the year before.

Granny K said he had rung a couple of days ago and made out that he may or may not be coming home but that he would ring if they were. And he did. They left Shikoku yesterday, stayed at some random hotel in Yufuin last night and are staying in Hakata tonight. Granny hasn't seen her son for four years and they come all this fuckin way and stay for TWO hours. I'm not sure if that is testament to fact that son is useless inconsiderate prick or that Granny K is just not who you would choose to spend 24 hours with. Of course I'm a fuckin legend as I have spent coming up ohhh, 39420 hours with her.

Of course it meant I had to quickly ring friend, cancel sushi, forget shopping, get changed, clean house, whip to supermarket with every other man, woman and child in a 50km radius, buy some lunch - seeing as even though son had said they wouldn't need lunch they were arriving right on that time of day when normally you would be consuming said meal.  They arrived, they ate, they prayed and they left...

Ryu was in great form and spent most of the time WALKING (holding on) around the table. Now that he is up and moving he wants to stand at every opportunity. I went in before and he was standing in his cot. Arrrgghhhh. It has begun. I am now expecting a few weeks of difficult sleep routine while he gets used to standing and the novelty that he can stand and peek over the edge of his cot wears off.

Son brought with him a picture of their daughter - a professional one taken at her coming of age ceremony. It was lovely. Not lovely enough of course for it to compensate fact that they haven't brought her to see Granny K in over 10 years. When we went to Shikoku when I was pregnant with Marina we invited Granny K and she was all up for it but then son said they didn't have room for her to stay so Granny K got in a huff and instead of staying in a hotel (like we were) she didn't go.

Anyhoo, the daughter is at varsity in Osaka now and is so busy with school, work, and slappery (she has many boyfriends according to her father) that she hardly goes home to see her parents. Granny K's outlook on the situation - she's a selfish bitch but what do you expect, look at the way she was raised.

Christ, I wonder what the woman says about me.

Actually I know what she says and I choose to ignore it in favor of world peace.

My sister in law gave me a few 'fuck this woman is on crack and seriously fucked up' looks and together we formed an alliance. My other sister in law is also part of this but me thinks they are just bloody glad they don't have to live with the woman. Amen. Wouldn't that be nice.

They left around 2pm and Ryu and I had a wee nap, pottered round a bit and then hub rocked on home at 4pm. For a second there I thought I was going to be dragged to the chambers for some 'barging in' but he came home early so he could take Granny K to the grave to 'bring home the ancestors' for the weekend. They get taken back next week some time. Ryu sleeps in the alter room so I hope he doesn't get woken by the ancestral party going on in there for the next four days or so.

The kids are all asleep and I think hub has probably fallen asleep too, although I imagine he will miraculously remember that he gets XXXXX in return for the neck massage I got an hour ago.

SDGH&QL

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Portable Festivities

Tonight hub had and his crowd of yellow t-shirted crownies had to drum and sing at two local 'welcoming back of the dead ancestors' festivals. Not really festival. Everyone congregates at the house 'celebrating' the first obon anniversary of their deceased loved one. Drummers and singers play the local dance tunes and everyone dances in circle around them, receiving free sake and packets of crisps.

Tonight's festivities were only about a hundred meters up the road and started earlier than usual due to having two in a row - so we decided to all go, with Granny K promising to help keep an eye on chaos, mayhem and cuteness.

The very second we got there she takes off with a friend to the house of the second festival - to pray and then comes back fifteen minutes later and asks why the hell I aren't bloody dancing for free crisps.  Oh, you mean the baby on my hip, the two year old on speed running in the middle of the circle and the four year old who is AWOL aren't enough reason? So I dance with baby on hip while Marina does crack induced sway, clap and fall over routine while Shou and his five year old bad-ass friend try to bowl with fishing buoys.

Hub hasn't even started his drumming yet - he is too busy getting made to squiff beer and sake.

This is the portable festival - drum, umbrella, light and speaker on the back of a K-truck. It all stays on here and one man stands up there and sings and the drummer stands behind the truck and belts away.  And then everyone dances...
Ryu had been dressed in his festival outfit but the other two missed out due to lack of actually having one.
I brought Ryu and Marina home after the first one and put them straight to bed. Shou and Granny K arrived home half an hour later but hub was no where to be seen.

GW: (to Granny K) Where's hub?
Granny K: no idea
GW: was he staying to drink with the lads?
Granny K: no idea. Are my crisps still in the push chair?
GW: um, yeah. Wonder where he is then.

Rings hub.

GW: where the fuck are you?
Hub: drinking with the lads. Be home in an hour.
GW: could you not have told me?
Hub: I told Granny K.
GW: While either your mouth doesn't work or her ears are painted on cause she doesn't know where the fuck you are. See you later. (shuts phone)

After getting Shou to sleep I do actually mail him and tell him to take his time and that all is quiet in the house of GW.

Oh and,

Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeellllp. The sinking porta cot - as in similar to sinking sand - as in getting sucked in and can't get out....

This was this morning. He was out cold. Suffocation by strawberry baby blanket.
Needless to say I have removed the half moon pillow and replaced it with a normal one. My cute little rockstar, engulfed in pink strawberries :D

And before I sign off, had big talk to mum today. She had a fabulous time in OZ and sounded so good. I think the steroids are effecting her a bit but all in all sounding great. Back onto chemo drugs on Monday :( Shou got on the phone and said Good Morning, Love you Granny and Goodbye. She asked after Marina's English ability and I said that if her conversation consisted of

'Put your Shoes on'
'Brush your Teeth'
'Sit down and eat those'
'Fe, Fi, Fo, Fum' and
'for fucks sakes'

then she could probably have a very good talk with her.

Looking forward to October anyway.

SDGH&QL

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Champers and Gin Squiffery

In the middle of a very drawn out toilet session with Marina. I am STOKED she will use the big toilet upstairs now and STOKED that she tells me that she needs to go before bed but I am not stoked that it takes five times over the course of half an hour. As it happens she will probably be out of her night time nappy before Shou. What a difference it will make only having one child left in nappies. Praise the fuckin lord.

So, to explain about poppochan, who was quite surprisingly well and sprightly this morning after last nights squiffery of beer, champers, gin and vodka. The photo - the chunder was indeed chunder. One year old baby chunder. Poppochan just happened to be on the floor near by when it happened at dinner time. I had nothing to do with it. I just took the photo. Illahee forced me to do it and then held a loaded gin bottle to my head as I posted it at 8:19pm last night - at which time we had SIX of SIX small children in bed ASLEEP and were on our hmmmmm, only second drink. Very tame and perhaps surprising to those of you who thought we might be pissed and letting the kids fix their own dinner by five.

There were no afternoon naps, hence the excellent bed times. It was a fun afternoon. I picked Marina and Shou up after lunch and then we came home and, holy shit I never thought I'd write this, spent a whole hour doing puzzles. Oh. My. God. I think I'm still in disbelief that this kind of thing is even possible with a four and nearly three year old.

Illahee and her trio of well behaved and adorable children arrived around two and Jo not long after with her two older ones. Pool time, sliding into the pool time, sliding into the pool with legs in the air time, putting kabotomushi in the pool time, rah rah.

Jo left and we got the kids an early dinner of Costcos pizza (yum) and Illahee's homemade lasagna (double yum - and triple yum as had leftovers for dinner tonight!). Somehow I think we then managed to get all troops through the bath and into pajamas.

Hub was home in time to help with bed and then to help with champers and then gin. We didn't get too annihilated I must admit. I didn't even cry - and gin usually makes me do that. Thank god Illahee didn't stop at Rachels on the way and get the bourbon that was on offer as bourbon really fucks me sideways and makes me do stupid things like pushing friends round the supermarket carpark in trollies. Obviously lack of trolly and lack of supermarket carpark would mean I would be forced to be more imaginative had bourbon been being consumed.

Fortunately Illahee took the half bottle of leftover gin and almost full bottle of vodka home with her or else I would have been in rehab by Sunday. God forbid, or perhaps even Friday afternoon.

I didn't get the best nights sleep with several little feet in my face at different stages of the night and in different beds. Marina was the culprit mainly. Ryu wasn't too fussed that he was sleeping in Shou's bed. At my 5:30am wakeup I was expecting to feel a bit more delicate than I was. Surprisingly though all as good in the land of gin induced hangovers and I was able to rally through the breakfast lark. Decided to get my two out of the equation though and packed them off to kinder. Illahee and I drank coffee and gassed all morning and then she packed her tired three into the car for the long drive home.

Guests gone, house tidy and I had one of two options. Nap with Ryu or Shred. And guess what. I chose to Shred. Excellent signs of willpower there and putting self in good stead to actually get to 30 days. Today was only day 3 though and after food consumption horrors yesterday I am a bit scared of my Friday weighing but still - I did every single squat, lunge and press-ups (knees)  today and even managed the minute of bicycle ab crunches at the end. Go me. Dare say it, I am almost looking forward to doing it tomorrow!

English class over, dinner and bath and bed routine ditto and here we are, at the end of another day in la casa de gaijinwife.

I wish I had taken more than the poppochan chunder pic yesterday but I didn't. There was a great kodak moment when Illahee's three were all lined up in the bath but I draw the line at posting other people's kids naked.

English cancelled tomorrow due to obon dancing and taiko drumming. Granny K has to go to it and hub has to drum in it so nobody to babysit during English. Starts early as there are two different places in a row. Perhaps we will all get out to the first one. The Jury is still out. Will probably come down to how many mozzies are out and about.

Nearly the weekend - fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck. That means eldest brother coming to stay and the house needs to be in much cleaner state than present. Have to do shit like clean the bloody windows - boring.

Nighty night

SDGH&QL

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Monday, 9 August 2010

The SHRED Part II

Started the SHRED again this morning.  I really want to get the whole 30 days in a row. After a week off due to headaches and colds and general laziness it wasn't as bad as I was expecting. A couple of days ago I started watching The Biggest Loser Australia episodes and I think I'm hooked. Jillian is great but some of the contestants would fuck me off big time. National bloody television and calling someone a slapper?? Please. Get a blog.

It has been very motivational though. If these 150kg people can do two hour workouts with Jillian I can handle 20 minutes a day. It is pretty much exercise focused so not much of the food side of it so perhaps I still have a bit of leeway with finding excuses to eat what I want :p

I wrote a list of stuff to get through today. Is anybody else like this....when I write a list I put random shit on it just so that I have more on it and therefore the opportunity to cross more things off - cause that's really the purpose isn't it? Not the actual outcome of getting things done but the physical crossing off of things off the list. So today I did some random chores like taking the empty beer bottles to the shop. Why? Illahee isn't going to give a shit and my brother in law for sure isn't going to wonder why I haven't taken the three boxes of empties at the back of the shed to the shop?? It is however one of those jobs that you keep thinking you need to do but don't. In the end it takes no time at all. In fact after parking the car at the shop (which I drive past every day) it takes exactly 2 minutes and 43 seconds to get out of the car, tell the lady I have empties, unload the empties, wait for the lady to get my 310 yen, make a silly face at Ryu in through the backseat window and get back into the car.

OK, so that was a guess there. I don't walk round with a stopwatch.

The bank, the post office, the drycleaners, the supermarket (no fuckin GIN??? Hmmmm. Only Vodka and Whisky and usual Japanese suspects of Sake and Shochu), then cleaning the range hood (outside not inside - inside hasn't been cleaned in looooooong time and I'm too scared to get in there), top of cupboards and other random shit that no-one will notice. Made me feel like the house was cleaner in general though!!

Folded three loads of washing while watching more Biggest Loser. I could see Granny K resisting the urge to tell me I spent too much time on the computer and to perhaps spend more time playing with my son. Would you believe that Ryu is quite happy to watch fat people play soccer though? Yeah OK, guess I really need to get to the end of it.

Lashed rain late this afternoon and I hope that was it and tomorrow is a nice day.

Shou said a great thing to hub....

パパ... ニュージーランドでさ... 英語が流行ってるって知ってた?
dad, did you know that English is 'in' in New Zealand (although sounds a lot better in Japanese)

He really is understanding a lot of what I say to him now and it will be interesting to see if he comes out with more when faced with being surrounded by English for ten days when we go home in October.

Hub is watching news on TV which leads me to believe he is waiting for us to 'hit the futon' together. Three days in a row aye. I suggested a meeting last night thinking he would decline as had sore back. Apparently his sore back and shagging is akin to cake and betsubara (separate stomach - meaning that even if you are really full from eating dinner there is always room for cake).

We'll see...

SDGH&QL

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Sunday in pics

International Relations Meeting last night put the man in a good mood. Poor thing has been a bit deprived you see what between me starting the Shred and then getting four day headache and then being snot central - meant I was too sore to spread em, head throbbing too much to concentrate on appropriate Japanese women sex noises, and well, shagging with two bits of scrunched up tissue stuffed up your nostrils just isn't polite.

Today was predominately a good family day. Very long but then a 5am start and only one out of three children napping will do that. Today in pics... (and yes, more crabs and more children. sigh)
7am crab find. Caught with the BBQ tongs.
The cat wants one to play with.
Shou's Rocket.
With buttons and hard to see red pipecleaners (fire) coming out the bottom.
Great spot about 20 minutes away. Today was our first ever visit there. Don't know why we never went sooner. So so perfect.
We didn't take togs but who cares. The water was so warm - could have almost tipped some into a flask for some coffee.
Home for more water fun sliding into the paddling pool.

And hosing Shou down so he can test out his goggles. All good.
Marina had a meltdown due to no afternoon nap and ended up getting in trouble for dangerous antics on the bike - seriously we nearly fell into a rice paddy. she was in the kiddy seat on the back - unbuckled the belt and had her feet up on my shoulders.

Sister in law rang this morning to appologise for brother in law's phone call yesterday - inviting their whole family for the night next weekend. She didn't know anything about it at the time! Typical. She was horrified, but not enough so to suggest they book the onsen place. Granny K has gone into a futon and pillow frenzy. She told me to take everything out of the futon cupboard. Half of it is still on the floor, she went on and on about the musty smell of a few things and I suggested we biff them, she agreed and then tried to stop me as I was squashing them into rubbish bags. Sorry lady, out they go. Besides, have almost brand new set in 'my futon cupboard' in the other room. Perhaps she thinks these have been dirtied by the the few gaijin that have slept on them.

The four bean pillows also got biffed as they are about 20 years old and I think you'd just about make yourself unconscious breathing on them. She got hub to take her out to buy more this afternoon - fortunately she copped on and got real pillows this time. I don't mind the traditional bean ones but it's almost harder to find them in the shops and besides, if you have a bit to drink and zonk out with a whack of the head on the pillow you could just about knock yourself out cold. 

Anyhoo, best clean some of this mess up. Fricken pitt that we live in on Sundays. Have loads of important stuff to do tomorrow, like buy gin and vacuum. 

Shit, am also meant to start back on the Shred.

SDGH&QL

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Boringness

Hub is off drumming at the local 'return of the dead' festival and has taken Shou with him - who has a wine box strapped to his back with glue on buttons (thanks mummy) and red pipe cleaners shooting out the bottom aka fire and rocket pack. Granny K has also gone as just up the road. She said she would take Marina with her - twenty minutes after I started the bed routine so unfortunately Marina misses out.

Her and Ryu are now both up watching the carebears. Ryu is actually trying to smash the stag beetle box with a big mettle ambulance but we'll just pretend he's watching.

I am so sick of rogue insects escaping from their respective bangkok hiltons. Came across two stag beetles when I woke up this morning and a couple of grass hopers throughout the day - just casually hanging out in our lounge. The whole lot of them miraculously made a departure before Shou got home from kinder and the grass got cut - meaning grass hopper heaven no longer.  The bug king still managed to catch eight new ones. Fuck it.

Hub went and cleaned the family grave this morning - cut the grass around it and cleaned the tomb (?). I am usually on helping duties but was 'too sick' this morning so got banished to bed to get better god damn it. I of course jumped at the opportunity to drink ice coffee and doss round on the internet. We took Ryu to sushi but I think he has reached the age now when taking him out isn't an easy outing. It wasn't a heinous trip it was just not as pleasant as it was a month ago when he was a bit less curious and down right fuckin mad and crazy. hurling shit all over the floor.

The kids home from kinder and...

Marina was your typical two and a half year old girl. Crown, Pink, Puricure, and Mummy's Shoes... and Shou was....
a typical four year old boy - climbing through the deck with his magnifying glass to go get bugs.

Ryu was being his usual cute self...

It was a bit of a fabric softener add evening. Until dinner when serious threats were issued to get children to eat cold noodles, fried pork and fruit - odd combination but this is Japan so you can get away with putting fruit next to meat next to egg roll next to shrimp next to sushi rice - and all cold if you want.  Baths were had and for a brief ten seconds Marina and Shou were

God, these moments are few and far between. A fight broke out about what color Marina was using to color Ultraman or Shinkenja Red or whoever she is coloring in.

Ohhhhh, they have just been so cute - Ryu and Marina (as others at festival). Lucky the camera was close to hand..


Oh, and I probably shouldn't write this but nevermind. Hub came up behind me during all the evening fiasco and did the hip grind. Shou and Marina were busy coloring but Ryu was on his pillow having his milk and saw us - and cracked up. Now every time hub does the air hip grind Ryu is in hysterics. Shou saw Ryu laughing and tried to hip grind as well. Not quite the same though and Ryu wasn't that impressed. Was one of those 'guess you have to be there' moments :D

And got 'just the best' text from mum from OZ. Yay. Fun holidays mum.

See you soon.

SDGH&QL

Friday, 6 August 2010

New Addition

And no, that doesn't mean I'm up the duff. A title to a post about that would definitely have the word fuck in it somewhere and possibly oversized spider.

Today I went to the small family-run electronics shop that installed Granny K's aircon. - to pay. After faffing round with eco-points and whatnot I ask if the very cool baikingu man (バイキングマン) that they have standing up is 'available' - actually I said that would they mind ringing us when it got all old and scodey so they couldn't have it on display anymore.

I walked out the door with it so supreme are my powers of persuasion. Actually that had nothing to do with it. Luck it was. Pure luck.

 Isn't he great! The kids were well stoked for all of ten seconds but I'm still a happy camper.

Had an extremely lazy day with Ryu - him and me both under the weather and with me losing perhaps a tenth of my body weight in hanamizu (snot) . The headache seems to have gone which means the supposed brain tumor has moved to the back of my nose and sinuses! Sore everything and all I really want is to not deal with three small children for the weekend.

Naughty mummy - especially after Ryu fell down the stairs (again) this morning. Same scenario as last time. He was in the walkie round thing on the deck. The gates were closed but then SHou and Marina went down to the garden. The gate was left open and even though both hub and I were out side we didn't notice until we heard the scream. Poor wee thing. Big red bruise on side of head but seems to be his usual self - that said though he is still up at 9pm and playing with books at my feet. Not having a bar of the sleep thing but he did get two massive sleeps in today (thanks love).

And nothing else to report - I didn't weigh in today so perhaps Monday when I am hopefully feeling up to the Shred again. Mum has arrived in Australia and hopefully having a fabulous time. I tried getting hole of various family yesterday and go no one - so of course start thinking the worse, that perhaps she did have the MRI after all and there is swelling enough for her not be allowed on the plane or whatnot. But all OK. Hope you're having a fab time mum.

SDGH&QL

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Bangkok Hilton

You can't really tell but there are TEN grasshoppers in this bug box - the Bangkok Hilton for grasshoppers, which I guess means that makes the aneorexic one that escaped through the bars Nicole Kidman.

I'm a bit over all the bugs in the lounge. Think half of them might have to escape their way outside tomorrow while the kids are at kindy and the cat isn't looking.

The morning started with a phone call from the eldest son in the city. They are coming home for obon - they do every year. For the day anyway. They only live two hours away. This type of distance is day trip distance here - is only 75km after all.  This year they want to stay - with daughter and her hub and their toddler and baby. For the whole night. This has never happened before. I love having visitors but foreign visitors are so much less hassle.  When Illahee comes to stay I plan on dumping the futons and towels in her room and telling her to sort them out how she wants. She is going to bring some stuff to help with dinner - she has given me a list of choices and I have no reservations in telling her exactly what I want - the lasagna and the costcos pizza sounds good :D

But with family who have only stayed once in the last four years..... I know that once I have the house sorted then it will actually be OK. I get on with them fine it just annoys me a bit that I am the last one to know when I am in fact the person who has to sort out the most, clean the most, stress the most. I doubt very much that sister in law is even happy about having to stay - I imagine my niece is the same. It's not easy taking enough stuff for a baby and toddler and then have to squash everyone into two small side-by-side tatami rooms. I'm presuming my brother in law wants to get on the lash with hub - which means they have to stay because sister in law can't drive. Will be good for brotherly bonding though as hardly ever happens. Hope I'm not expected to sit and pour drinks.

Oh, and can I take the kids out of kinder on the Saturday so the toddler has a play friend when they arrive after lunch.

NOPE - not going to happen. Taking kids out of kinder not conducive to having house in state for guests. They'll have to be satisfied with hub picking the kids up at about four.

Hub took Shou to kinder and I took Marina, Ryu and the cat to the doctors - not the same one. Was quite successful I guess. No major meltdowns.  Marina got back to kinder in time for lunch and the cat was one happy camper being let out of her box when we got home.

Mummy guests this afternoon. One friend who I haven't see for ages asked if she could come round. I said sure and then she turns up with a friend - who I know but still, thanks for telling me. Mi cassa su cassa and all that but hey, a bit of courtesy.

Got back from English tonight and all kids were up. Marina was getting changed after coughing herself sick again.  I think they are all asleep now - hope they stay that way cause I need a good nights sleep. Just need to down a small handful of drugs first. Headache - present and accounted for. Runny nose, sneezes and sore through - ditto. Not nice but should be cleared up by Tuesday Illahee :D And if' it's not I'll just keep my distance from your kids and when they are in bed, we can gossip and I can  throw shaker of gaijinwife sling across room, Tom Cruise in Cocktail style.

SDGH&QL

LOL. Yeah right.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

So, I'm pretty sure it's just a sore head...

Last night saw Marina coughing herself into a vomit again - always fun. Late night washing and cleaning up of small vomitty child. I would have taken her to the doctors this morning but hub decided that I needed drugs first and I can always take her tomorrow and then Shou and the cat on Friday. Awesome. I have folded the pillow end of her mattress over so her head is elevated. Hopefully she sleeps well tonight.

So hub, Ryu and I went to the hospital an hour away - I haven't signed up there yet so there was a bit of faffing round. To be perfectly honest I was feeling a lot better by the time we got there and was starting to doubt myself. You know, like when you are in the initial stages of labor with your second child - the pain comes as a bit of a shock at first but then you get used to it cause you know what's in store. At the beginning you wonder if it is actually labor or not. I think I had gotten used to the ongoing throb and because I wasn't getting any of the ouchy fuckers every time I bent my head any which way I had convinced myself I was fine. But hub had taken the morning off to come with me and so we went.

The doctor was very nice. Didn't moshi moshi (use her stethoscope) or check my ears or my throat - or give me hello kitty stickers for that matter. She said she reckoned I was on the mend and prescribed me some pain killers and some muscle pills for my stiff shoulders - which she thinks could be cause of my headache. As SOON as Ryu and I got home it started up like yesterday. It goes in waves and overall hasn't gotten any better. We shall see though. Back on Saturday if it hasn't gone by then because surely a headache shouldn't last for four days?? Have stopped the Shred until it gets better and am drinking loads of water, no alcohol and no coffee.

I ended up telling the doctor very briefly about mum and the result of her three day headache. No doubt the doctor then thought 'fuckin fantastic, I've got a foreign hypochondriac who is going to come back thinking she's got a brain tumor every time she gets a bloody headache'.

If I'm not waving my head round and bending up and down and all over the show it is OK so had English. Fortunately hub was home early so he helped with the bath thing but then sat on his ass drinking beer while I put three children to sleep. Humph.

Bon odori festivals start tomorrow night. Hub has to drum at all of them - about eight over the course of the next two weeks. He can hopefully get away with taking Shou to most of them which is a bonus. We might all make it to the one up the road next weekend but chances are I'll pull the plug and stay home with Marina and Ryu - party pooper that I am.

Illahee is hopefully coming to stay with her troop of beautiful children one day over of the next couple of weeks. I think we'll crush up sleeping pills into the curry for the kids so they all go to sleep by eight and we can spend the rest of the evening trying to invent a new cocktail - the Mummy Meltdown or the Illahee Illusion, Gaijinwife Sling or similar.

Nighty night.

SDGH&QL

PS - Granny K thinks I have debilitating headache because I spend too much time at the computer. Hub still thinks it is just cause I'm a woman and Shou enlightened me about his theory - that had something to do with feeding the cat and taking the wrapper off the jelly food for the stage beetles???

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Quick Post

Extremely quick post as have throbbing headache, not being helped by over the counter drugs and a somewhat unsympathetic husband who thinks it's period related - I have never had a headache during a period before and my period finished this morning and most of my googling said period related headaches and migraines are before or during your period.  Have had it since last night but it has gotten progressively worse. No runny nose, no sore cheeks or nose or anything. Light is OK but movement is a complete bitch. Leaning forward, sitting down, lying down - not good. Anyway, lets hope I can find a position that will let me sleep.

Up at the crack of dawn this morning with Shou who was wanting to check on the kabutomushi stag beetle orgy going on in the bug boxes - plural. We have four boxes and a current grand total of ten stag beetles, two grasshoppers and one praying mantis. They all watched on as I did day five of the Shred at 5:30am this morning - everyone else was up by then so no worry about waking them up with my star jumps. Quite a good effort if I do say so myself. No way I would have been jumping round this evening.

Exercise, washing, dishes, beds done and hub and I were able to leave for our day out after dropping the kids at kinder. SALT at 9:50 - divided on opinion. Was average I guess and not a movie you need to rush out and see on the big screen. I had rung Granny K before it began and Ryu had only slept twenty minutes and she was stressing out that he wouldn't sleep at all after that. Made us cut our day short and after the movie we did about fifteen minutes of shopping and then did the two hour trip home. I did get my starbucks in though :D

Got home to the aircon people putting in Granny K's new aircon. She was very strongly opposed to getting one when we built the house - and now she's just about melting so she has been making aircon comments for the past few weeks. She is paying half and so are we, which I don't quite understand as her pension gives her more expendable income after expenses than us. Haha, what expenses. She doesn't bloody well pay for anything except her own food and her mail catalogue addiction.

Put Ryu to sleep straight away where he zonked and had to be woken up at five. English was fine - albeit a bit gingerly done as I am unable to make big movements due to sore head.

Right, shit. This is painful. Any advice on what type of headache I've got would be grateful - and yes, with all the recent stuff with mum I have already googled brain tumor headaches and I'm pretty sure, that because I'm not yet vomiting, that I'm not heading down that road so not to worry.

SDGH&QL

Monday, 2 August 2010

Hiding the Cicada

Where would YOU hide a cicada - hypothetically speaking of course as I don't think any of you are four year old bug obsessed boys with cicada's to hide. But IF you had one and you felt so inclined as to hide it where would you hide it?

In the freezer?

No, me neither, I reserve that for the scissors when I'm seven months pregnant.

Your handbag?

No, me neither, I reserve that for the remote control and other small household appliances when I'm eight months pregnant - and if the truth be known not even pregnant at all.

Or would you hide it here...
in the chime ding dong bowel in front of the alter. It had a lid made from the prayer book Granny K keeps beside this. I found it this morning - when I was cleaning not when I was praying. Shou must have put it here yesterday - he reckoned it was still somewhat alive when he laid it in it's final resting place, quite fittingly at the alter ready for it's cicada soul to be taken to cicada heaven. I hope the ancestors weren't surprised at their latest offering.  Ah well, it's obon (festival of the dead) soon so they can bring the soul back with them if they want.

Today was highly uneventful. I walked the kids to kinder and then did day four of the Shred. It was a LOT better than the first day and bar a few of the lunges I was able to do everything. Keep this up and I might be able to try level two after ten days. Well that's the plan.

Did some extremely exciting housework...
That would be a weekend's worth of washing - including hub's fireman's uniform and about five changes of clothes each by Shou and Marina from yesterday - and a zillion towels. I hate folding washing. That and deciding what to cook for dinner each night must be my two biggest 'I hate being a housewife' things. Although, folding washing in front of Criminal Minds not quite so bad.

In other news, I have become a Daring Baker. Basically this is a group of bakers - or wannabe bakers - or people that just want an excuse to try something tricky for the sake of 'having to do it'. Each month there is a new challenge posted. You have x amount of days to do it and a bit of leeway in ingredients if you live in the whops like me and can't get your hands on things that normal people can. I can't reveal what the challenge is until the deadline has closed and then I can post a picture and tell you about what a fuckin crap baker I am. Something to look forward to I guess. Also means I have to try and organize a mummy get together once a month so I don't scoff the challenge on my own. That or neighbors will be getting handouts.

Granny K is watching Ryu tomorrow and hub and I are off to see SALT - the movies is an hour and a half away so that means leaving as soon as have taken sproglets to kindy at half seven. Need to be back by four for English so it's really only the movie, lunch and a takeout starbucks and perhaps ten minutes spending a thousand yen trying to win a two hundred yen soft toy out of a UFO catcher.  Quite exciting though and stellar effort Granny K for agreeing to look after Ryu. He who sleeps half the day so at least she won't be exhausted.

And that is about as exciting a post as you will get from me tonight. Hub being standard, kids being kids and Granny K still harping on about how much of a better haircut she could have given Marina....

Nighty night.

SDGH&QL

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Just Another Sunday

After posting last night I had more beer, Googled more brain tumor sites and basically had a big old weep and life's a bitch cry into my glass of Asahi. There are a lot of cancer sites that have the positive stories about people who beat cancer. Those are few and far between for the kind of cancer that mum has. Her fall the other day - they were going to get an MRI. She isn't scheduled for one for a few more weeks but they were talking about getting one anyway. They have decided not to. Dad told me it was because they wouldn't be able to tell anything at this stage (so soon after the radiation) anyway. My take on it is that because what is the fuckin point really. They have cut her head open and removed a golf ball size bit of cancer. They have done radiation on the rest and your body can only deal with this once. They are doing the most aggressive chemo treatment they can and so finding anything out on an MRI - like the bastards growing back faster than they thought or whatever, really is just a big bitch and mum may as well go on her girls trip next week and have a good time without knowing.

Myself... I hate the uncertainty.

Anyway, fortunately hub came home at midnight and was more pissed than I was so didn't notice that half the beer had gone. I felt a bit sorry for the man as he had to be up at 5:30 to start up the weed eater to help mulch all the grass in the river...
He must have been feeling exceptionally seedy.

He got home at half seven, showered, shat and changed into his wannabe fire brigade boy outfit and headed to the 'kunren' training thing they had from 8am.  Poor guy. Not a good day to be pissed the night before.

It was a four year old boys's dream - noddy fire engine line up, an ambulance, and we even saw them testing all the pumps.
We ended up moving to just above the very left of that spray and got a nice cool down. I don't get why half the town isn't there with their four year old boys. We were the only spectators. What a waste.

Then it was home for some pool time and to wait for daddy to get home...
I blew up the baby paddling pool as well and just about passed out. Got the three of them in for about two seconds so I could take this pic. Ryu wasn't very impressed - god he's white. And god I should have at least taken the dummy out. Didn't even realize.

When hub got back he took Shou to get MORE stag beetles. Shou now has about ten, a dead butterfly, some funny beetle with long antenna and two genetically engineered cicadas...

OK, so obviously using a precure figurine to compare sizes not as effective as cigarette box but still - this cicada was BIG - and fuckin noisy.

The afternoon passed as you would expect with three children under foot. I didn't get day four of the shred done and doing it now wouldn't be conducive to keeping three children and a husband asleep - what with there being lots of starjumps and all.

Or that could just be the first of many excuses. I hope not. My body isn't feeling like it has been run over like a bus anymore and I am not dreading doing the shredding tomorrow. Almost looking forward to it. Ok, so that could be a bit of an exaggeration :)

Time to fold some washing I think. The house is a complete bombsite but that can wait till tomorrow.

SDGH&QL