Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Costco in Japan info share, looks like we have bacon again. Finally!!! And the Thanksgiving turkeys are in stock...

As you all know, for my specific nearest Costco. Costco Chiba New Town, I have been on turkey watch 2016! LOL. : ) As in...I have been checking once a week to give you all the heads up! Again if your Costco in Japan had them earlier than this...then good for you, you're lucky. : ) For our specific Costco though... they made their appearance last week! I count 7 in this picture. And I spoke to a lady (Costco meat woman) and she said, they had more in the back. So that is awesome to hear! I did not buy one, as of yet. Because it's still too early for me to buy one. But they are here. Those American delicious Butterball turkeys came a *very* long way to reach us! So, yep, anyone needing a turkey? Not to worry they are here! Gobble Gobble Gobble. : ) 

About 10-11 years ago, Costco's in Japan sold American style bacon that gets all delicious and crispy. And then they just stopped selling it. Completely out of the blue. Just one day it was there and the next day, it was gone. And has not ever returned. Costco's in Japan sell microwave bacon from the US...but omg it tastes so funky weird! So for the most part we've been without bacon for our household unless we bring it into Japan ourselves and do the paperwork for it and get it cleared at customs. Which we are experts by now for doing that. But yes...it is a pain in the butt to have to go through that too though. Imagine my surprise when last week...I had went down an aisle at Costco that I had not gone down.. in about a month. I was down that aisle in September and it wasn't there. But..all October I have been just zipping in Costco scratching things off my list and leaving. Last week however I strolled so many aisles. And was shocked ...okay pleasantly surprised to see this! I was like...holy crap! I bought a pack. We had it over the weekend for breakfast and it's delicious! We will definitely be buying this twice a month from now on! I only hope...that they don't stop carrying this! : )

Costco cart pic. That handmade pasta is nearest my camera. 2 packs of chicken. Shredded cheese for Mexican food. Bacon. Umm what else... Costco amount of tortillas. Green chili is coming up soon. Big bag of potatoes far right. 4 frozen Costco pizzas. A cheesecake and something is hiding underneath that cheesecake. This cheesecake is called a cheese tart. But if you're American...this is a regular delicious cheesecake. It's so good.

These maple pecan danish are underneath. My friend, American mama good friend also living in Japan... rec'd me to try these. And ever since she told me to try these. We've been buying them ever since. She's right because these are so delicious. 

These are the best things to eat in Fall and Winter for breakfast. They don't seem to sell them in summer. But...that just makes these even more special...since they seem to be seasonal. : ) 

Noboru wanted me to get him the takoyaki. We get Costco emails weekly of what's on sale. And he mentioned wanting these since they were on sale last week. Hahaha. While I eat bologna and cheese sandwich or grilled cheese for lunch, Noboru if he's home for lunch (most of the time he's not) if he's home though..he is enjoying his octopus balls. For lunches he eats what he likes and I do too. We eat the same stuff for dinner though. : ) 
A couple years ago Coco Ichiban Curry sold a nabe here in Japan. For those of you not living in Japan or Hawaii. Coco Ichi Curry is a famous restaurant that sells curry. Delicious curry. Anyways...they started selling a curry nabe and it wasn't sold at their restaurants, it was sold at supermarkets all over Japan. Now slightly switching the subject lightly. In Japan....there is hidden seafood in so many foods that you would never even realize it. Unless you check. That is a post for another time... that yes I will write. But...the Coco Ichi nabe the first 2 years it sold here in Japan had zero fish or seafood...no dashi (fish broth) nothing. So, I happily bought it. In Japan, Japanese families look forward to eating nabe in a big communal pot at the dinner table and eating as a family. So families do really look forward to eating nabe. We enjoyed nabe...curry nabe those 2 years. I enjoyed it too. Then the 3rd year they sold it...the ingredients were changed and it now contained fish broth. I'm just not down for seafood at all. Like at all...at all (okay I do like shrimp and lobster but I don't want shrimp in a soup though or on my potato chips.) So, we stopped eating it. Which is a bummer. Anyways...so the day I went to Costco and saw the turkeys. This Besia is right next to Costco in Inzai/Chiba New Town. Anyways...I saw this. It's a curry soup. But after looking at the pictures on the back. There's that same ceramic pot and communal eating. I thought...you know what. We should try this. Oh and this has zero fish...zero anything from the sea. We have since tried it once and it's delicious! I have about 35-40 plus foreign mama really good friends in Japan that enjoy seafood. But I also have about 7 foreign mama friends who hate seafood as much as I do. So...this is for you. This has no seafood. If you see this packet. You may want to give it a shot. Again if you love seafood this obviously wouldn't be information you'd need. But again if you dislike seafood...you may really appreciate this info. Again as always just trying to help. : ) 

Close up pic. Ajinomoto makes this. There's 8 packets/base of soup. We used all 8 for our family of 4, for 1 nights worth. So...this may give you a round about idea of how much you'd need. Again...just trying to be helpful. I guess I could say absolutely nothing. But no..if I can help out...I will. : ) 

Yep we ate this in a pot and enjoyed our meal. Also...this expires in 2018. This makes me wonder...and worry...what if they too change their recipe/ingredients next year on this? I wonder if I should buy a few extras just to stock pile this a tad. That way...if next year they change the recipe...we will still have some of this one. Hmm. I might. : )

Just random other things I bought while at Besia that day. Frozen veggies and fresh veggies. I always keep frozen veggies in my freezer. This time I have...frozen corn, green beans and broccoli. And fresh bell peppers, onions, zucchini, carrot and frozen wedge fries. 

Best fries ever ever! From Hokkaido. Hokkaido is famous for potatoes, same how Idaho is. : ) Besia always has the cheapest fries. I prefer wedge fries, I'm not sure why, but they're my favorite. Anyways, 2 weeks ago, I was making "make your own Cheeseburger night" And needed fries. I went to the freezer section to buy the fries that I have been buying for ages. And they no longer sell the kind I used to buy, no worries. They now only sell these wedge fries. I bought them. These are honestly...the best french fries ever! I am not sure if these are so good because they are from smaller potatoes? Or what. Aren't smaller veggies supposed to be sweeter and tastier?  These were so delicious and they tasted almost sweet. Not sickening sweet. But...such delicious fries. And trust me...I have tried fries from all over. Anyways...these fries they sell at Besia are the best. I am so glad I tried them. So much so...I bought another bag last week. My 2nd time buying them. : ) Anyway...lots of information for just 1 post. : ) Happy Tuesday everyone! : )  

Friday, October 21, 2016

Noah's 5th grade Sports Day...

Sunday, September 25th was Noah's 5th grade undokai (sports day) at his local elementary school. This picture is of all 6 grades, every kid our school has. 249 kids for the entire school population. Our other town elementary school has like...and I'm being serious...no joke..only like 38 kids all 6 grades. @_@ Hahaha. So yes, a super tiny town (a town with no yochien and only 1 hoikuen, 2 elementary schools and 1 JHS and no high school). I know I am a bit late posting this, but I'm a firm believer in...better late than never! : ) 

I see you Noah!!! : )

The whole school makes 1 lap so all of us parents can take pics. The running 1 lap is always a bit tricky because I know they go from the oldest to youngest. Clearly I know Noah's a 5th grader. But it's just they run by so fast, that it's like a blur. And so you don't want to snap your picture TOO early and yet...you don't want to snap it so late...that you catch your child's back of head! Versus their face. So...this is always the moment I am like...holy goodness! I hope I snap a picture of my child! And not the back of their head instead! : ) So, what I do is snap a "continuous shot" on my sports setting and it goes like clickclickclick. Again...it could still clickclickclick some other kid! And not my kid. But...all you can do is click and hope for the best afterwards! This was the best shot I took and it's a fairly good picture! Noah's looking right at my camera...I captured his face. I did check back after they ran past us...and I was happy to see Noah's smiling face in that shot! I was like...phew...relief! : ) I did it! : ) 

 5th grade countryside boys enjoying their sports day...

The nice thing about Noah being such an extremely western looking hafu is that he is *so* easy to find on the field. We can find him immediately! In a sea of gorgeous little Japanese faces (I married a Japanese man so of course, I find their faces gorgeous). You see this one very western looking little boy and we instantly know...oh there's Noah! LOL. Easiest time *ever* finding our son on the field! : )

This was a fun one to watch! Go Noah!

Noah running. Officials smiling.

About to run in another race. Noah is really super fast. And he used to win races all the time. But I don't know what it is. When he was in the 3rd grade...Noah told me. "Mama, I'm not into running anymore"...And he's never really liked it ever since. Why? How come? I don't know. But...he's not into running anymore. Go figure. And that's okay. : )

On your mark...get set...

Serious intense running face right there! LOL. : )

Run kids run!

The big pants relay! Noah's running partner. She was cheering. She had a lot to say too.

Then Noah.. too had a lot to say. And they chit chatted. 

Then he realized... I had my camera on him and he smiled for me. And she was looking around and around then got to chit chatting with Noah again.

Okay there's Noah's serious...on your mark.. get set... go... face again! : )

Run Noah-chan! And awww, there's cutie pie Lily-chan back there smiling away and cheering for Noah! Because they're on the same team and also because they're superly good buddies. They are real good friends, Noah and her. She is so cute you guys! Like she's seriously *so* cute! : )

Good luck Noah and his running partner!

Fast as grease lightning in some gigantic yellow shorts! The bright side is...that's Noah's favorite color! Go figure. Hahaha. : ) 

Who is Noah giving the best... most smiley smile to?  While his brother of course! Branden adores Noah! And vice versa. They're both so super close! And he took so many pics of Noah and so many videos of Noah running the races during his undokai. 
Noah being a 5th grader this year means he helped out the younger grades on certain events. This was a race for future 1st graders. And they each got a notebook and a pencil. And Noah and his classmates each had a set number to give out to the newcomers that will attend here... this coming April. : )  Proud of you Noah! You are such a kind helpful senpai! Just like Branden is! : )

And again...who is Noah giving great big smiles to? Branden! Noah is so lucky to have such a fantastic big brother like Branden! It's such a peace of mind... knowing how close they are and how well they get along. 

Lunch time! We made it! Let's eat! : ) And right on for our Star Wars Force Awakens plates!: ) We had the usual picnic stuff. Karaage (Japanese style fried chicken) rice balls, salad, super sweet seedless American grapes. Potato salad and macaroni salad. Some tamagoyaki and meatballs for Noboru. We also had lemonade. Frozen pouch drinks for the kids. Cake. To me...lunch time means...half way done. We have now completed undokai half way. We're half done. And now it's going to go quickly and before you know it...it'll be over. And we will have wrapped up one more of these! So definitely lunch time for me...is sort of like half time for me. : ) 

Our family was eating. Enjoying our meal. 

Sorry Noah...I didn't mean to catch you mid chew. Beautiful big eyes though! : ) 

After lunch, Mr. Gorgeous rested on the leisure sheet. And drank his slushy/ half frozen Qoo. 

Marching band time! It always amazes me, how all kids in Japan learn to play instruments from the 1st grade. Noah can play the pianica and recorder very well! And so can the rest of the school! They can also... all read sheet music! I love Japanese elementary school. : ) They learn so many things.

Go you, cool and groovy kids! You are all awesome!

Hi Noah! And hi little sweetheart on the left! Aww. : )

They played like 4-5 different songs. The Totoro theme song. The Mickey Mouse Club song. All sorts of songs. These kids all truly dazzled!

A first for Noah. The 5th graders had to go and run and pull this log from the opposing team. Am I the only mom worried about splinters? Hahaha! Sorry...not sure if this is...American momma/mama type worry I have. Or what! But seriously...I would hate for my kid to get a 2 inch splinter in his hand! Hahaha. Fwiw...to my knowledge nobody at our school... all Branden's years or Noah's years..nobody has ever got one...but it's still something that instantly goes into my mind on this event! : )

And 2 teams running for the same exact log! Very exciting to watch!
We went out to yakiniku to celebrate after Noah's Sports Day! : )

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Throwback Thursday. Jack O' Lantern and a Halloween pic from 2008...

My family from Halloween 2008!!! I love this picture so much! We already had a very good supper. The pumpkin seeds were roasting in the oven, as I snapped this picture. We had a plastic Halloween jack o' lantern bucket full of a variety of delicious American Halloween candy in the house and we were about to watch "It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown" on DVD. : ) Have a spooktacular Thursday everyone! : )

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

My 2 most recent trips to Costco...

This is what I brought back from Costco, October 1st. That busy day. The day we went and saw the Cultural Day in the morning and went to that Italian buffet in the evening...though not really a buffet...really more so an "All you can eat" type of place. And fwiw, I always have a cooler in my trunk. Because I can run to Costco at a moments notice or a regular store too and if I need to throw some beef or cheese or sour cream or anything in my cooler, so be it. But I'm always ready! : ) What's in my cart this day? Tortilla chips. shredded cheese. Tortillas. And a pack of chicken breast which has 8 breast in there. All separated in groups of 2. Which is nice. And a bunch of super lean ground beef. There's beef... even under those beef patties too. I split the beef in 3 ziplocks at home later in the evening. I got cheeseburgers, tacos and meatballs for the spaghetti and meatball night that we had. So for me...getting 3 meals worth from 1 pack of lean ground beef. Totally worth it. : )  
This was taken on a morning, my Costco just opened it was like 10am. It was pretty dead in Costco only a small handful of people. Which is nice. I love shopping on weekdays when stores are less crowded. On this particular day Noboru wanted to come with me, he's been looking and pricing their "drive recorders" for his car. We also wanted to have lunch there too. This was October 12th.

Christmas stuff is all out now. And Halloween stuff is out too. Our turkeys are not out yet at Costco Chiba New Town. It's a bit early to buy one yet...since we still have over a month before Thanksgiving. But...I have been checking for the American turkeys to arrive at my store. : ) 

After I paid and sat down for lunch it was about 10:25am. I have my list and I pretty much stick to it. Unless it's something on sale like an Osh Kosh shirt or anything. : ) Look nobody in line barely any registers open. Again it was barely opened. 2 lanes were open though and when I went to the cash register...there was no wait in line. : )

Tortilla chips yet again. Noboru and Noah have been chips and salsa maniacs all October and...so I had to retock their supply! Hahaha. : ) Chicken breast. Costco amount of eggs. Hamburger buns for cheeseburger night. Dinner rolls for pot roast night. Toilet tabs. And the toilet antibacterial wipes that used to be in a canister are now in a package. I actually prefer the wipes this way! So, 2 thumbs way up... for me on the repackaging of the house cleaning wet wipes!!! : )

Noboru and I had lunch together. I had a slice of cheese pizza. He had 1 hot dog. And we usually will share a vanilla ice cream cup. Soft serve. However for a limited time...they are selling fro-yo instead! We tried it. And neither of us liked it. It's sour and a flavor that neither of us really liked, at all. And fwiw (for what it's worth) we eat fro-yo at Yogurtland in Guam all the time. So...we do love fro-yo. Just not this one. Bring back the regular vanilla soft cream Costco Japan!!! We are very glad the fro-yo is just temporary/for a limited time! Phew : )