Friday, May 01, 2015

Catching up, plenty of good eats and some very delayed bits and pieces and odds and ends...

Hi everyone! I have a really good post to put up, and I was going to put that one up today. However, this post has been sitting and waiting, for a long time. It's getting rather dated. So, I better get this up, before it's way past it's prime. Hahaha. : ) Friday, the day before Noah's observation day. I made homemade pizza from scratch. I had the dough rising and resting all day long and after the boys and Noboru got home, I rolled out the dough and made some fresh homemade pizza from scratch. The tiny personal sized pizza, bottom left, was for Noah's obento for school for the next day/Saturday, the day we had observation day. He took a homemade from scratch, mini pizza. He also mentioned to his best friend and teacher it was homemade pizza. : ) Awww. How cute, that proud... little sweetheart of mine. Noah also took a small salad with vinaigrette dressing (and I kept it cool by sending the mini salad with a frozen cool pack bought at Daiso) Noah also brought a filled thermos with tea and plenty of ice in the thermos. : )  So this pic, the day before Noah's observation day. : )  Told ya, I had to get this post up. : ) Very delayed. : )  Sorry guys. : )

After Noah's observation day, remember how I said we went to the farmers market. We did. : ) And we brought back a bag of 6 onions. A nice size bag of potatoes, a bag of fresh green beans and 2 tiny heads of lettuce in 1 bag for 70 yen. : ) I made chicken jaga. You know niku jaga but with chicken instead. It's really good. Basically a homemade chicken bowl. With some onions, 2 diced up potatoes and a few steamed green beans on top of every ones chicken bowl. : ) The next night Sunday, we would be having chicken enchiladas, which is why I bought the lettuce. : ) 

Sunday, we all relaxed. And in the afternoon, I boiled 2 small-medium boneless chicken breasts. Skinless & boneless. And after they were done 100%, I made sure all fat or funky bits were off. Rinsed the 2 chicken breast very well. And then shredded them. Added a little shake or two of garlic salt and a shake or two of black pepper. Fried up the corn tortillas real quick, which literally takes seconds per each corn tortilla. I use a canned medium (hotness level), of enchilada sauce. The kids shredded the cheese for me. Good helpful kids, that they are. : ) 

Looks like a lot of seasoning, but considering you will shred it, it isn't really a lot of seasonings at all. Although, you want your chicken to taste flavorful and not like yucky boiled chicken. Make it taste like something. Hence the garlic salt and black pepper. This pic taken before I mixed the seasonings with the chicken obviously. : )

All mixed and ready to roll!

And done, stuffed with cheese and chicken! All melty hot and gooey. Rice is done and I always like some sour cream on top and some chopped lettuce on top of my enchiladas. : ) Dinner that night was really good! : )  I like to mix our meals up! The night before chicken bowl. This night, enchilada dinner. Another night, homemade pizza from scratch. I like...just like I am sure, most of you do too...we don't want to eat...the same type of food every single day of our lives. You know what I mean. Variety....I need variety and I am glad my kids can eat it all. And enjoy all sorts of different country foods! : )

You know, I have American TV, right. Best thing ever. Totally a life changer. : ) Anyways, watching all those John Stamos commercials for greek yogurt and knowing how big greek yogurt is and has been for the past couple years, in the US. And nope...we have not been lucky enough to have it here. Until recently. Hallelujah....woohoo. Finally. I bought one for a try out/trial to see if I like it. Of course, the yogurt freak that I am. I loved it. : ) Gosh when was this pic taken? A long while ago. Half month ago at least. 

This was taken the day I bought the yogurt up above. You guys know...every once in a while, I will snap what our weekly groceries look like. It helps because lots of people overseas are curious what is available here in Japan. And likewise, a lot of my girlfriends in Japan, will email me and ask...what karaage flavoring do you use girl, hit me up with that info! So this way, every once in a while, I snap a pic and ya'll can see what we buy during a random week. : ) This pic, yogurt. The kids LOVE aloe yogurt. I mean like they're obsessed with aloe yogurt. Have been for years. LOL. We all love yogurt, so I need to have it here at home, at all times. 

These pics were taken way before we went to Guam the 2nd time. You see, 2 loaves of freshly cut bakery bread, so fresh the lady at the bakery told me, to not tie the bag, yet to let it steam out some still. Choco pan, melon pan, cream pan. English muffin. Hot dog buns. Coffee, I drink this particular Blendy every morning, I only allow myself 1-2 every day, but they are so good. I see Cook Do's. A pork stir fry called hoykolo, one is spicy and one is not. The not spicy one...is for Noah. The other one is 2 packs (one on top of the other) of the spicy pork stir fry and we 3 eat that one, but we can't leave Noah out and want him to enjoy too, so I make a separate amount for him in a different pan. : ) Pasta was for chicken paremsan. Pork curry was happening that particular week. Fresh pineapple. We love fresh pineapple around here a lot. : ) Eat it every week, when it's in season and it's in season now. : ) 

A weeks worth of meat, there was a bunch back there, you can only see a bit of it. I just whited out the name of the store. 
One lone bag sat in the genkan and it contained 2 half cabbage heads and 1 pack of bananas. Have you ever bought a whole cabbage head... only to find it had bugs in there. @_@ Those creepy blue bugs. Anyway...to avoid that...years ago, I started buying 2 half heads. Granted it is usually 5 yen higher buying this way. But you know what...for me personally, it's better/safer than buying a whole cabbage, taking it home and finding out a bug army is living in my cabbage head, thus throwing the whole thing away and running back to the store. So for me...it's safer just buying 2 half cabbage heads. Weird? Yes, could possibly be so, but...just peace of mind for me. : ) 
For you in Tohoku, about to get your very first Costco this summer! I am so happy for you guys! I know I have mentioned it once already but...I am just so happy for you all. Don't ask me why. Although to be honest...I am so happy because, I GET YOU. I understand. I had no Costco until 2 years ago. And how did I feel? I felt it sucked! Hahaha. : ) Granted I am not telling ya'll to go out and get a membership. I am by no means doing that. But...in particular if you are American and miss most of our products from "home" our home country, America. You will be so happy. : ) Just knowing you can pick up a rotisserie chicken, whenever you want. Go and order a birthday cake. Buy some bagels. Huge tiramisu (I really recommend that tiramisu btw) : ) Cheese. Do, I remember how hard it was finding cheese before Costco. Yes, I do! So, yeah...sorry to sound nerdy, but I am so happy for you guys in Tohoku! I took these next few pics around my Costco, especially for you guys.... to give you guys an idea of what will probably be inside YOUR Costco! : ) Lemonade. 2 of the biggest plastic bottles/jugs of lemonade. If you are missing lemonade. This is for you. 2880ml times 2 for 1,058 yen. Not a bad price, considering how ginormous the bottles are. However, I can't get these bottle into the recycle bottle machines, ykwim, so maybe you'll have to crush your bottles to smithereens like I had to. : ) 

It was clearly raining this day because I see my cart and umbrella in this pic. 

Sunscreen, they are currently selling 2 types of sunscreen in bulk. Granted, you may not need it in bulk. So ymmv. : ) 

Cetaphil. Cleanser and lotion. I personally need a foaming cleanser, so I buy the Dove cleanser at Costco. But just in case, any of you are needing some Cetaphil, just hold out... a few more months and you can get it. : ) 

Neutrogena rainbath. This bottle is huge but the price is ...yikes! Sorta pricey. But again...if you are needing this. Just wait until, July? It's on it's way. : ) They have frozen pizza (OMG that frozen pizza is the bomb). Frozen waffles. Swiss Miss fudgsicle type bars. Frozen mozzarella cheese sticks. Jalapeno poppers. Honey Nut Cheerios. Huge size of Swiss Miss hot cocoa in winter. Books. Sliced ham for sammys. Seasonal stuff like for Easter. Popcorn. You all will be rockin' in no time! : ) The first month it opens, it will probably be insanely busy. CRAZY TOWN!!! I personally find even my Costco busy on the weekends and I avoid going on weekends, at all cost. Also I avoid holidays too. However I find the weekday...especially the mornings...very dead. You can shop in peace and quiet. : ) Anyway...I am just so excited for you guys. : ) Because, like I said...I know exactly how it feels. Ganbatte, you guys are almost there! If it helps at all, I am doing the count down with you guys! : )

This particular day, I only needed and bought 2 things. I bought the lemonade and some mozzarella cheese. The lemonade tastes *very* good. The only thing about it is and it probably won't affect you at all but... I dislike that it gives me the slightest dot of heartburn. It gives Branden a pinch of heartburn too. LOL. But it doesn't affect anyone else in the fam at all. The taste is actually really good. Perfect for undokai. : ) 
Alrighty, almost done with this post. I am so glad, I got this up and posted, before it was months and months past when they happened. : ) My breakfast pic one morning. Nice thick greek yogurt and some cereal for crunch on top. : )

Another meal/dinner. During that day, I boiled 1 bag of pinto beans. After they were cooked, I refried them. I toasted up the corn tortillas all nice and crunchy. Fried up some lean ground beef from Costco. Shredded some cheese super fine, chopped some lettuce and made sure, we had some salsa ready to go in a little bowl. And we had ourselves a tostada party at home. It was a weekend. We were all in our comfy clothes, sweats and whatnot. Not a stitch of makeup on for me. And we sorta just kicked it here at home and relaxed with the fam, with some good food. : ) 

Yet another breakfast. For breakfast Monday through Friday, I will have yogurt and a toasted croissant with some peanut butter and some banana sliced up on top. I don't use jam, because the banana is sweet enough. Monday through Fridays, my breakfasts are just fuel. I enjoy my Mon-Fri breakfasts. I generally eat the same thing for breakfast Mon-Friday. The kids get a nice filling breakfast and it changes daily for them. Sometimes I will have it on toast versus croissant. Or sometimes I'll have cereal, honey bunches of oats. But mostly 99% of the time it's what's pictured here. Saturday or Sunday 1 of those days...not both, I will have a nice American homestyle cooked breakfast, bacon,eggs, skillet fried potatoes, toast. Sometimes it's omelets or over easy or scrambled. But once a week...we have a nice sit down family breakfast. But yep...Mon-Fri my breakfast is just fuel for my body. I do enjoy it though. Lunch Mon-Friday is often a salad (bag of salad), an egg salad sandwich, or one of those Knorr 180 calorie soups. I like the mushroom one or tomato pasta one. Maybe once a week I'll have a ham sandwich or bologna sandwich. But mostly I consider my lunch Mon-Friday just fuel too. Which is why I like those Knorr soups with the calories on the container. Dinner, I like to enjoy my dinner. I won't go for seconds. But yeah...I enjoy my dinner for sures. : ) Now that the weather has warmed up, I have been going for my daily long walks. I walk to the plaza and come straight home.  It's round trip 5.4km. My hope is to go 5 days a week. But given my running to the grocery store errands, Costco runs and whatnot. I go at least 3 times a week. Hopefully 4 times a week. but honestly 98% of the time... it's just 3 times a week. But you know what....going 3 times a week, is still pretty amazing. That's still 16.2km of walking exercise a week, so that's truly not so bad. I do make sure, I do my daily stomach crunches at least 4-5 days a week or else I feel REALLY off without doing them. : )  And I do have a treadmill at home and have for years and I like using it. And I have been known to get on there and watch YouTube videos (makeup videos, I'll walk forever, lol) while walking my treadmill. I even and I'm seriously not kidding you...I watched the entire full length movie of Dread Dead Fred off YouTube while treadmilling once (this was last December). What is that movie...2 hours long? LOL. So, as long as I can enjoy being occupied while treadmilling, I can actually lose myself in the movie and watch a whole length of movie. Or an hour of makeup videos and the times goes by in a snap and the most important thing is...I got my exercise in! Anyway this is the long over due post, I had kept as "saved" for ages, hahaha. I am glad it's up. Does this post have a point. No, I don't think it needs one really. It's just letting you all know, what I have been up to, granted a bit delayed, but still. And I just wanted to connect with you all and say hi. : )

After the boys get home from school today. Golden Week has officially started. Noah does not go back to school, until next Thursday. And I think the same goes for Branden too. Today is Friday. Tonight, I am making karaage (Japanese style chicken nuggets), with that, we are having salad, and broccoli and rice. Tomorrow we are having our first BBQ of the season.We will be having yakiniku in the backyard. And just relaxing here at home. Another one of the days we will be going to Tokyo. But for the most part, we are staying close to home. Japan is *very* crowded during Golden Week. Going to Tokyo Disneyland, any amusement park will an have hours long wait. We went to the Aquarium one year, and the parking lot of the aquarium was full. Just trying to go anyplace will be hard. So we will just relax here at home, for the most part. : ) Which is why the kids and I, smartly took our Guam mini vacation last weekend. That way we could avoid all Golden Week crowds, rush to the airport traffic and whatnot. : )  If you're in Japan, have a wonderful Golden Week. If you're not in Japan, please have a lovely weekend! : )