Sunday, April 24, 2011

Another hippity hoppity egg-cellent and egg-citing Easter! : )

I know, I know, I use the same nerdy Easter titles for this blog every year it seems. But what the hey, I wouldn't be me, if I didn't. ; ) These are Branden and Noah's Easter baskets for 2011! Stocked full of cool stuff.

Close up.

Happy Easter kiddos!

Taking a peek at their loot.

What's inside those eggs. Inside Noah's baseball egg was tropical jelly beans and inside Branden's yellow egg was Easter Reese's Peanut butter eggs.

Getting ready to dye the eggs on a beautiful Sunday morning. Notice the newspaper, Kate Middleton is on the paper. It's very exciting that Prince William is getting married next week. And all over CNN, and on so many programs that is the topic. I even watched a show on CNN last eveing about it. For what it's worth, America truly loved the late Princess Diana and her two sons. And it's been on so many magazine covers this engagement of William. I only wonder what it's like in England. It must be huge there of course. Even in Japan, I've seen it on a few programs. Maybe 10 years from now, we can look back on this Easter post and see the newspaper on this very table and remember, "yes that's right. This was before they married." : ) Anyway, moving on...

Getting ready for the coloring.

Aha! Eggs in every egg coloring cup.

Branden patiently waiting.

Clear Easter glitter. I tell you, we have every thing you can think of relating to Easter. Easter is *huge* for our family! We love Easter! : )

Branden using one of those magic crayons.

Noah about to get his egg out of one of the cups.

Noah, trying his very best.... coloring an egg. It came out eggcellent! ;P

And putting glitter on another egg.

Very nice egg Branden, well done.

Noboru was with us as well. And while we were all doing our own eggs. Noboru was doing his eggs as well. When this came out of the coloring cups. I asked, who made this egg? Noboru said, he did.

So here is what he said. He was about to leave to work shortly (in about an hour). But he said, he made 2 eggs for the boys. 1 egg each and he was going to hide those eggs in a really hard to find spot. And he said he will call here if he gets the chance to find out if the boys ever found the 2 eggs. @_@

He hid the eggs. And meanwhile I had a stinking suspicion he hid them some place the kids would never find. And then I worried....they probably would be in our yard for years. @_@. I finally whispered to didn't bury them or anything right? The look on his face....I knew I guessed right. @_@ Oh my! ; )

So, I you can't leave them buried, they'll be there forever. So he went and dug them out. Then he went into the house and got changed for work.

At least he had the good mind to put them in a plastic bag before he buried them. LOL. Which is what he's holding.

And then it was my turn to hide them. I sent the boys upstairs. I didn't want any cheating to happen, so I asked them to sit in my walk-in closet and I'd call for them when I was ready. Because my closet isn't facing any of the windows in the back. So, I ran all over the yard with a basket full of eggs. Meanwhile I chatted with the grandma next door. She said...those are very nice eggs this year. I said, thank you. ; ) She's very used to Easter by now I think. ; )

And yep, I even hung out all the boys uniforms for school very early this morning. Even on Easter. ; )

I hid them in easy spots when they were younger. But I made sure to hide them all in hard spots this year with an exception of 2 or 3.

Kabuto mushi egg.

A real Happy Easter egg, Noboru made this.

A heart egg in a gardening bucket.

The funny thing about this picture is you can still see the egg on the window sill of the shed.
Branden found this many when I clicked to take this pic.
It was so quiet and peaceful during our egg hunt. You could hear some frogs and country sounds but really a quiet day. You could hear the kids laughter in the backyard and us talking, but honestly that's about it. Very quiet peaceful day.
19 eggs. In Japan we sell eggs by 10, not a dozen. And I boiled 2 packs, so we had 20 total, but Noboru while coloring the eggs....ate one. ; )
I baked this cheesecake yesterday. Saturday while it rained. I know after I bake this NY style cheesecake in the oven and after it cools, it usually has to sit in the fridge a good 4-6 hours. So I made it yesterday so a whole days worth of sitting in the fridge. We finally had this after lunch today. Noboru had the first slice. : )
So good. It was a great afternoon treat. Noboru especially loves cheesecake. So, he is quite happy. We have over half the cheesecake left and we'll save it for when Noboru gets home tonight. We had a roast chicken dinner last Sunday, so we're not having that again today. We're having buffalo wings, they're baking in the oven right now. We also will be having big baked potatoes stuffed with the works, like chives (for Noboru), cheese, butter etc. And we're having ranch dip for the wings. And a salad. So, not too fancy an Easter meal, I know. But, buffalo wings, bake potatoes and salad isn't too bad. Plus cheesecake. And Easter candy. We'll be eating around 4:30-4:45pm (literally in a few minutes). And just relax and enjoy ourselvs here at home. Watch some dvd's. Anyway, Happy Easter from our family to yours.

Monday, April 18, 2011

2 Backyard bbq's. 1 Driver's license renewal class. Observation day for Branden. Plus lots of fun in the backyard. And playing Monopoly with the boys.

So what have we been up to, since last I blogged? I'll tell ya.. : ) Let me get you all caught up real quick. Last Monday, Branden had told me that he needed to bring his bicycle to school on Wednesday. Because his grade is learning bike safety. Okay fair enough. So, I went and wrote that on the calender. And so last Wednesday, Noboru loaded up Branden's bicycle into the minivan. Meanwhile the granny next door was also loading "the boy next doors" bike into her minivan as well, since his mom's car is too small" my car is too small too, so I get that..... we good morning-ed with the neighbors, same as usual last Wednesday while we all loaded bikes into our minivans. I meanwhile went back in the house preparing Noah for yochien. In the afternoon, I prepped for the BBQ. And then after that but still in the afternoon, I swung around picked up Noah at the new time of 2pm. And then switched to the minivan from my red car, so we could pick up Branden and his bike from school. Loaded the bike up and off we went home. Noboru was getting the grill lit. Fresh veggies to be thrown on the grill.
Meat that marinated all day.
Both Branden and Noah played in the backyard.
Side note that extra sod/grass. Noboru says, he is watering it every other day but he says he will fill certain areas. So....
They played.
Noboru BBQ-ed.
Then Branden remembered he had a last bit of homework he could finish up while waiting for dinner, so since the weather was so nice, he did his last bits of homework on the play gym.
It was really nice to just relax and enjoy some yakiniku. Everyone relaxed. Comfy clothes. Just enjoying our meal.
We heard every detail of the bike safety class. How 2 kids didn't bring their bikes. But everyone else did. @_@. Who had small bikes and who had very big bikes. We heard the whole bike run down. ; ) It was fun. Meanwhile we heard from Noah how school went, how the new red badges are adjusting. How he's helping them. Dinner was nice.

It was so nice, we decided to do it again the next day. So Thursday evening we fired up the grill one more time for some burgers.

Both Branden and Noah played soccer while waiting for some burgers.
Another apple crisp. I was going to make it on Friday but I made it Thursday instead after I got out of my drivers class.
Burgers were all done and fries. The boys came inside and washed their hands before dinner.
Chargrilled cheeseburger and fries. And apple crumble/crisp for dessert.

Friday ran to the store. Spring time every one's eating lighter. More fruits, more salads. And smoothie season starts for many of us.
Says to just add milk. The kids like theirs that way. And also, thanks to my smoothie "cookbook" we've had for years...we mix things up and make all sorts of interesting ones....sometimes we use fruit juice, frozen berries and fresh bananas and make all sorts of types. It's fun.
They have some really cute napkins and for pretty cheap, 98 yen a pack. Figured never know when we could use one. So, bought these. They even had different styles too. But I just picked 3.
Saturday, Branden had school. So all the kids would need an obento and a thermos since no lunch lady is there over the weekend. So, I sent him to school Saturday with this. Karaage, rice balls, fries and veggies. And cake.
Saturday at 1:20pm parents were to be there for an hour of observation day followed by a meeting. Noboru had to work. So it was just Noah and I who showed up for Branden. They gave speeches on rice fields, and country life, agriculture etc. And bugs found in the countryside. The kids worked on their speeches for 2 days. Branden practiced that speech to us many many many @_@ many times. : ) he knew it by heart and I think we knew it by heart too.: ) So Saturday afternoon rolls around and the class starts with the speeches. We (Noah and I) heard 20 kids give basically the same speech. I ohhed and ahhed every child's speech and made sure I clapped loudly. And so did all the other parents. We cheered them all on! Noah stood next to me the whole time. However there were 2 other little boys. One is a little boy same age as Noah and they'll both be ichinensei next year. The other little boy looked a little older and a whole lot taller. Anyway, K-kun's little brother went over to the bigger kid to play and the bigger kid punched K-kun's little brother square in the chest area. @_@ K-kun's parents didn't look too pleased. And the other mother apologized and stuff. but, yeah that was the stuff going on while the speeches were going on. Finally the speeches were done. Followed by a very short meeting and we were done. Phew. The weather Saturday? So warm, almost dare I We were honestly roasting in that classroom. As soon as we got home, the boys changed clothes. And they got their bikes out and played in the backyard.
See the lady in the rice fields behind our house? Rice planting season is on it's way and every evening we hear that nice sound of frogs. I love that sound. Very peaceful.
Noah pulling his bike up to the terrace. And wearing shorts and feeling much better then wearing that fleece and jeans he was wearing at observation an hour earlier. : ( Sorry Noah. Poor little guy was so hot. Noah's also wearing his brothers old flip flops in the pic. It was such a nice day Saturday.
If they're out in the front yard or riding around the neighborhood they have to wear a helmet. But for just being in the backyard and going in a circle, I don't enforce it.
Hi Noah!
Smiling faces running throughout the backyard on a Saturday afternoon.
While the boys were enjoying themselves in the backyard. I went inside to start dinner. Chicken chow mein/ sara udon. I like veggies and lots of them.

A nice quiet dinner for us Saturday evening. We watched one movie of course and popped popcorn as usual.
Sunday and both the boys uniforms outside drying. But if you look close you'll see some granny types in the rice field.
Three ladies chatting before starting on some very hard work.
After breakfast, we decided what to do. We decided to make it a lazy Sunday. The boys brushed their teeth but didn't even comb their hair or get a fresh change of clothes in the am like they usually do. I let them have a lazy day, especially considering we only had 1 weekend day, since B went to school the day before... we sorta could use it. I had a pony tail on and hanging round the house clothes too. So we opened the Monopoly game.
The game was fun. ; ) We each had property with houses on them and some of us even switched to hotels after. We winced when we landed on the others property. We loved playing this. It was a great relaxing way to spend a Sunday.
After the game was finished. Branden and Noah started playing Wii. I did some treadmill. And then I decided to get dinner in the oven. That seasoning packet for herb chicken is really inexpensive and I get that at my local Cainz.
About to go in the oven. While the chickens roasted, I went back on the treadmill again to try and catch up with some of the ladies on there.
A heaping amount of mashed potatoes.
Roasted chickens, stuffing, gravy and green beans.

Sunday family dinner at our house yesterday evening.
The kids and I decided to make choco bananas after our roast chicken dinner.
We had so much fun making those last night.
And I was happy the boys each ate 2 bananas each. All in all, it was a pretty good week. Good bbq's. Nice days spent outside in the backyard. A nice observation day. And Sunday was nice with a family game of Monopoly and a nice chicken dinner, then winding down with some choco bananas. The boys went up to shower. And I showered after. They went to dreamland and snoozeland. And I went back downstairs after tucking them in.
With 2 good sized pork roasts, I thinly sliced them last night around 10pm, and then fried them and then put them in the crock pot over night. Tonight we're having niku jaga. After I put them in the crock pot, I channel surfed and watched some stuff until 11pm. Before heading to dreamland myself.

What else....Oh yes my drivers renewal class. I went to that Thursday morning. It was really good. It wasn't bad at all. There were 9 other people in there, if you count me, 10 of us total. Everyone awake, no sleepers or nappers like Noboru mentioned. ; ) We listened, the man showed slides and we flipped through the booklet. He'd say, turn to page 5, and so we did. And he'd go over that. And then after that, we watched a movie. About 5 minutes long film. Then he said we had a 10 minute break. I went to pee but I came right back anyways because I didn't wanna risk being late or anything. Then we flipped through some more pages. Completed a survey about what "type" of driver are we. Just simply circled the one matching our driving style. And we didn't turn the surveys in. And that was it. It was 2 hours long. It was painless. It was really really not bad at all. For many of them, there license was ready right on the spot. But I went and got my appointment right away, a bit early so, my license will be ready first week of May, I'll just go to the police station in the city nearest us and pick it up.

I'm thinking about starting on the garden soon. Trying to decide to start it before Golden Week or after GW. Hmmm.

TV Talk: Dexter season 5 started for us in Japan. I've been happy that has started. What else. I am loving the new season of America's Next Top Model on Fox Life. Still watching House MD and Bones. Law and Order SVU is also getting interesting. Also was happy the new (to us) season of the Ghost Whisperer has started.

As for what the boys are watching. Branden and Noah are still really into Ben 10 on Cartoon Network. The Pink Panther, Tom and Jerry. And they are also loving Phinneas and Ferb on The Disney Channel.

Music, I've downloaded lately...

E.T.....Katy Perry (featuring Kanye West)

Perfect, by Pink.

Yeah Chris Brown

Price Tag...Jessie J (ft B.O.B)

I'm sure there are other songs, I've downloaded recently but those are the songs that come to mind right now.

I'm turning Noah's bedroom inside out sometime this week. I want to get a jump on the Spring cleaning. So, will start with 1 room at a time. And will start with his room first since Branden's room is fairly clean and so is mine. Also baking that cheesecake this week too.

What else....anything else to say...(racking brain) oh yes, I'm going to lunch twice this week with my girlfriends. I'm really looking forward to that. Okay...I think that's all I have to say for now. : )