Friday, March 31, 2017

Homemade from scratch pizza and family movie night fun...

Has everyone been enjoying their Spring break so far? As for us, most definitely! : ) Yesterday morning right after breakfast was done. Branden and I made our family recipe... for our homemade from scratch pizza dough and we let it rest in the kitchen all day! Meanwhile Noah was finishing his Spring break homework, he finished it all up yesterday morning 100% and then he and little K and 2 other friends went to play tennis at the tennis courts right up the street inside our housing community. So a restful day for us all. Branden and I also walked 2 laps around our housing community, so we did see Noah and his friends playing tennis as we walked past them and we all waved. : )

In the evening, I rolled out the pizzas quickly and Noah put the mozzarella cheese we buy at Costco on there and he added the pepperoni and mushrooms to my small pizza. You can tell how crispy this crust is! I only had 1 slice of pizza and I also had a side salad. We will all have pizza for lunch today. Since there is enough for that. The Maze Runner has been on heavy rotation on my American cable lately and my kids *love* the Maze Runner! So we saw on the cable TV guide channel, while the pizza was baking in the oven that it was about to start. So we usually pick something good to watch on cable since there is *always* so many good TV shows and movies on. But the kids picked to watch The Maze Runner, so as soon as the pizza beeped, I quickly sliced up the pizzas and I brought everyone a plate with pizza slices on them and we ate in the living room, we usually eat in the dining room. But...we just all snuggled up on the couch and enjoy our homemade pizza from scratch and watched the Maze Runner, we caught it right as it started. I did buy ice creams for everyone to enjoy too, except me. I didn't get one, which is totally fine. But yeah...we enjoyed the movie a lot. We all enjoyed the pizza a lot too. : ) The 3rd installment of the Maze Runner is coming out this coming year right? I think so...

Anyway that's about it you guys. We just chilled here at home yesterday. It has been bitterly cold. No rain yesterday. But it is raining here today.

OMG...did anyone see the trailer for the IT (Stephan King) remake. The original movie with John-Boy (Richard Thomas) and John Ritter, was aired on TV in a mini series. This one is going to be an actual real movie at a movie theater. Anyone remember that miniseries on TV with Tim Curry as Pennywise the clown, wow was he fantastic in that... he scared the h*ll out of me as IT! Anyway this one is coming out in America in September 2017. And I saw the trailer yesterday on YouTube. And OMG... it looks so freaking scary! I thought the original was hardcore scary. But this one....looks just as scary, if not more so...I mean it legit... looks like it will give you nightmares for life...type scary! If you liked the original miniseries IT. Definitely go check out the trailer for this new one coming out in September. @_@ 

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Spring break fun!!! Going to the movies to see Sing...

Yesterday evening we took the kids to see the movie Sing. Taking the kids to movies in Japan is fairly easy. Because most theaters offer American movies in 2 options, in English the original language of the movie... with just Japanese subtitles for Japanese people. Or dubbed, where they have a Japanese voice over for the entire movie. And yes Japan does make Japanese movies, but we don't watch them. However for American cartoons in Japan (Disney or Pixar etc), it's almost always available in Japanese dubbed with a Japanese voice. I think in the huge cities like Tokyo it must be easy to find a kids movie in English though. Our closest option is all the way in Ikspiari which is about a 2 hour drive from our teeny tiny rural town. So 4 hours round trip. However we will make that trip twice a year. However...I was looking online yesterday and was shocked to see Sing playing in English at Narita Humax (a movie theater in Narita city) granted it's a 30 minute drive for us to where our town is located...but not so far. So we went and enjoyed that. The only time Sing played in English was just once a day at 8:30pm. They however show Japanese dubbed versions of Sing every 2 hours. : )   
I would very much like to see the new Beauty and the Beast movie. I think it's out in America already, but not for us in Japan until April 21st or so. But little known's my most favorite Disney movie of all time. I *love* the cartoon version of Beauty and the Beast. I also remember watching the old black and white version in my French class in middle school, lol. Belle is also my favorite Disney princess. And I happen to love Emma Watson, she's incredible. She was fantastic in The Perks of Being a Wallflower! Absolutely incredible, yes second time I'm calling her incredible...because she is. I also like that's she's intelligent and witty and an activist and cares about issues. So yep...can't wait to see this too. : )

Sing didn't come out for us in Japan until March 17th. Sorry about the insanely blurry picture.  

Yep..we certainly did go and see this last night. March 29th! Ours was in English so it did indeed have subtitles (Japanese subtitles)

A large caramel corn, 4 drinks. I did get a drink, but a small one. And nachos for everyone. I only had about 2 tiny handfuls of caramel corn, and I had no nachos at all, because I am watching what I eat...yet I do want to enjoy some bit of life too. So I did have some but not too much caramel corn. 2 small handfuls. 

Branden and Noah chillin' before the movie. Man...they get along so well!!! They're lucky they have each other. : )

One family about to enjoy a movie at the theater in Narita city. : )

How did we like Sing? It was really good! Adults would like this one and so would kids. All 4 of us enjoyed this so much. It was about 2 hours long it let out around 10:30pm but with the 30 minute drive back to our rural town, we got home around 11pm last night. The kids were exhausted, so they didn't shower...but they brushed their teeth and went straight to their beds. I washed my face in the sink. With a hot soapy wash cloth. And then I pinned my hair up and took a fast shower and just washed my body. Jumped in my sleep tee. And I went to sleep too. Noboru zonked too, we were all pretty sleepy. : ) 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The first bit of summer clothes for the kids...

As you know, I always start getting the kids summer clothes from February. Just a piece here or a piece there. Or a few shirts here and there. Ykwim. : ) I first started right before Valentine's Day when we went to the Loft. And we also went to Gap in Tsukuba Japan. And we bought Noah a pair of summer shorts. So that was the first thing. 1 pair of jean shorts for Noah. And then the next thing was Branden had asked to get a pair of Vans. He was adamant about no laces, that he wanted the slip on kind. So, since we live in Japan, ABC Mart is a Vans dealer here. So we went to the small city nearest us, since there's obviously no mall in our rural town, lol. But we found the pair we liked. And the biggest size they had was a 27.5cm. Which was a men's 9 and a half US size. So, we talked to the lady there. She's like college aged and so super nice, she has sold us every pair of Branden's JHS pure white sneakers for the last 3 years. Since her and I always click. The sales lady said...why don't I see if they are available within the company and if so, you can order the larger size. And they can be delivered to your house. Fwiw, they were not available in his size on the ABC online store for us regular customers, but they were available the store could order them. So that's what we did. I paid for the shoes. We gave her our address and they shipped them to our front door! What great customer service. 

An American USA size men's 10. And a Japanese size of 28cm. : ) 

That way he can bebop around town in a preppy navy blue pair. 

Before I watched The Big Bang Theory weekly and before I was a loyal Friends fan. I was a loyal Seinfeld fan. I watched every episode countless times. And it comes on every evening on TBS. And so my kids have watched every single episode too. And so when I saw this shirt at Old Navy. In the men's department, I immediately ordered it for Branden. I am so sure... that when we go to the US for vacation or when his English teachers see him on weekends because they do have school trips, they will be dying laughing seeing Branden's tee shirt! It's hilarious. He will be cracking up everyone... left and right with this shirt. : )
And a perfect pair of swimming trunks for Branden! Pineapples! Perfect for a boy who was born on the island of Oahu! : ) So just 2 things so far for Bran from Old Navy. A comical tee and a pair of swim trunks. A small start yes...but a start! And not to forget his Vans. 

A preppy Gap tee in red and navy for Noah. Size 12! This will be perfect for Noah this summer.

And 1 in green too. Plus not to forget Noah has a pair of Gap shorts already. Just 1 pair so far.. but it is a start. And I will be buying both the kids more stuff in a week or two. 
In America the school year starts in August or September. But in Japan it starts for us in April. So, brand new undies for Branden! We hit Uniqlo and GU (which is Uniqlo's sister company) one morning Branden and I drove to the city of Inzai after dropping off Noah at school. And we hit Costco for food. I took Bran out to lunch and then we hit GU and then Uniqlo afterwards and then straight back to our town. This was after his JHS graduation obviously. : )

We look for CUTE underwear. Not plain or ugly underwear! Japan sells the coolest underwear for Japanese guys! Some seriously stylish undies. These on the left looks 100% legit like jeans but they're soft underwear. These will be very cool to wear to high school. 

And these ones from GU. Preppy anchors. Navy and white stripes with a red stripe. Hawaiian palms on another pair and another pair is polka dots. 6 brand new pair of underwear is a great start for the start of the new school year. So are we done with summer clothes shopping? Nope not even 1% done. But we're getting there. : )

The other day, after we went to the dentist and to Costco. We hit the Ami Premium Outlet to look for wallets for Branden. We did not see anything we liked. Noboru thought the material, type of leather was very hard and cheap grade of leather at the Coach outlet. Not soft and buttery like his Coach wallet is. And I agreed. So we did not get a wallet for Branden. However we did go to Sony Plaza and the kids wanted some Jalapeno Pringles and so since they both had positive fantastic dental checks ups as always... from the dentist. I bought them each a pack of those and some beef jerky to share. My kids love spicy stuff, clearly...even their beef jerky they picked was peppered. : ) 

I meanwhile picked a bottle of perfume at Sony Plaza. This is #1 as you can see. But, it smells really good and Branden and Noboru were both like...smelling perfumes...and were going through them and like...this stinks...this stinks...this meh...and they both smelled this one and they both this! And the funny/odd thing is...when they both did this...when Noboru did this Branden was on the opposite side of the store and same for when Branden smelled this Noboru was recharging my electric car at the time... outside. So neither of them knew that the other one loved this same scent. So...since they both felt SO strongly about it and given it was 1400 yen. About US$13. I figured I'd give it a try because I too liked this scent. Noah meanwhile is so kind...that he loves every perfume in the entire store. So...I am always iffy when it comes to his opinion. Because he's just so kind and loves everything. 

Not sure if you can see the bathtub with soapy bubbles picture on the bottle. In Japan..for the most part Japanese women pick and like scented things that smell light and clean. Like almost soapy or fresh... as in just out of the shower type scent. Nothing heavy. Nothing over powering. They go for light and clean scents. And I agree. I like light clean scents too. : )

I also picked up 3 packs of mints. Now ya'll know that I really like mints. I suck about 2 or 3 each day. I now have....lime mint...and cinnamon in my bag. And fwiw, the cinnamon is much lighter and less strong than the Altoids cinnamon ones. These ones are really good. The Altoids cinnamon ones were so strong...too strong for me. These cinnamon ones are perfect though. I like them all. : )

Anything else to add? I made a huge pot of pork green chili and a big pot of beans yesterday and we will be having the same thing for dinner tonight. Yum! Anything else to add? We 4 are going to the movies this evening. : )  To see the movie Sing. : ) 

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Dental cleaning and check ups for both Branden and Noah today...

Today at 11am, both the boys have a dental cleaning and check up. They go to the dentist every 6 months like clock-work. And both Bran and Noah have *never* had a cavity! So that's what we're doing today. Dental cleanings, and check-ups. : )

It was snowing earlier this morning for about 2 hours straight, great big huge fluffy snowflakes that melted as soon as they hit the ground, but now it's just rain!

I'm thinking about hitting Costco after we visit the dentist. I need milk, eggs and a few other things. Noboru has off today and I think he said he wants to hit the outlet to look for a Coach wallet for Bran, since he's starting high school soon. Anyway that's about it for now. : )

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Operation "get fit" for summer 2017 is underway! Plus some TV talk...

Does anyone else feel at the end of Winter that they need to lose 7-10 pounds? I always feel like that every end of winter. Granted, I have a treadmill at home and use it 4 days a week. Log my 10,000 steps. And do try to eat sensibly for breakfasts and lunches. But yeah I do enjoy dinner time though. I mean...I don't go for seconds or anything mind you. But, the end of every winter season I feel like...ugh...I need to lose 7-10 pounds! So, every Spring I kick things into gear because...we are a beach and pool loving family. And we spend a lot of our summers at both, so I have no choice but to get in shape because I know I'll be at the beach this summer. So every March...time to get it started. I also want to point out that with weight didn't increase at ALL. It's just...I feel less firm and tight? @_@ And feel the need to get fitter. Also important to note, since my weight did not increase a single pound all winter and I still fit into my ceremony outfit from years past. I did not want to lose any weight until after Branden's JHS graduation. So, since Bran graduated March 9th, I didn't start my diet. Okay I hate that word. I think because it has the word DIE in it. LOL. So...I'll just call it..."operation get fit for summer 2017!!!" So this started officially March 10th. for 1 solid week, I weighed and calorie counted absolutely everything. I was absolutely relentless. They say the average American adult needs to eat 2000 calories everyday to MAINTAIN their weight. And if you want to lose weight, the average American needs to lower that to just 1500 calories a day. Since I am on my mission to get beach ready! My goal each day is 1500 calories each day total, including breakfast, lunch and dinner all for 1500 calories total. This was my lunch one day my first week. A cabbage salad with dressing that I already counted the calories for. @_@ And 2 bananas which I too weighed and counted calories for too. My aim is for 500 calories for BOTH my lunch and dinner and to keep 1000 calories for my dinner if I want. Meaning if I want to enjoy homemade rotisserie (healthier chicken) taquitos and a small side of spanish rice and refried beans, I can and WITHOUT guilt too. I like that I can break up my 1500 calories each day...however *I* want. I enjoy the flexibility. 

My breakfast from that week. Bananas are insanely healthy and good for you and really low calorie, 1 medium banana is just 90 calories. And these teeny tiny coconut yogurts are BAE. And of course calorie counting the crunch I add to my yogurt. 

I absolutely do not mind eating the same thing for breakfast every morning. The routine doesn't bother me, granted some people it would drive them nuts maybe... but I view breakfasts and lunches more as fuel for my body, meaning not to die and my dinners I look at more as... a thing to be enjoyed with my fam-bam. I know exactly how many calories are in my breakfast. And it means I can enjoy a nice dinner. Sensible dinner of course... but a scrumptious one. 

What has been the hardest thing for me about "operation get fit 2017" the low carbing I'm doing! I'm trying to go as low carb as I possibly can. However for me personally it's so super freakin' hard because as an American girl/woman/ person especially in Colorado where cattle, beef and pork was so cheap growing up. I grew up eating meat and potatoes for supper and we always had a stack of (Wonderbread) white bread buttered in the center of our dinner table and of course we'd have fresh veggies on the side and peach cobbler or peach crisp from our peach tree in the backyard. Or biscuits. Or Crescent rolls in a big dish covered inside a cloth in the center of the table. So yeah...growing up where dinner always had a stack of buttered bread in the center of the table or biscuits or crescent rolls in the center. And of course potatoes were always on the table too and if not then pasta was there. Pasta for our family is a staple. I can't stress that enough. We had pasta at least twice a week, maybe 3 times a week, I'm not kidding. We never really ate rice in my house growing up and on a rare occasion we was Minute Rice LOL. @_@ But our family was huge bread and potato eaters. So saying all that. For me to more pasta or bread of any kind for me EVER. Geeze you might as well just kill me now, lol! it easy? No. Because pasta and potatoes and bread are life. It's just how I grew up. So is it easy? No. It sucks. But am I doing it? I'm trying. That's why I say...I'm doing low carb...not zero carb. Because I'd be miserable. I used to have a sandwich everyday for lunch. Now I allow myself to have a sandwich twice in a 7 day period. And I of course count the calories of the bread and I only get 1 slice of ham because I'm being rentlentless with my calorie counting. And 1 slice of cheese plus 1 TBS of Miracle Whip. This is what a 200 calorie sandwich looks like. And if I have 2 yogurts for breakfast and 1 cup of Blendy coffee (60 calories) I can have up to a 1000 calories for supper. Granted...I'm not going full hog every dinner. I'm not. But...since I only allow myself 2 sandwiches a week now. I really appreciate them now when I have them. 

Again a sensible lunch. If I totally crash around 2pm. I have been buying the celery at Costco and I have 2 peanut butter celery sticks. Protein, holla!!

To share that I am indeed not going..."mommy's gone wild on my dinner meals." This was snapped last week. Yes, I know my dinner looks meh! And that's okay. : ) I'll be looking mighty *fine* this summer at the beach and that will be reward enough. Anyway...everyone had chicken teriyaki bowls. Teriyaki chicken breast on a bed of rice. I was going to make broccoli but the kids requested corn instead. That night, I felt I didn't really want to have any rice at all. I just didn't want the calories. So, I had 1 small chicken teriyaki breast on a plate and some side of corn and that's it. I also will not allow myself to eat at *all* after 7pm. 

After the first week of extreme weighing of my food and calorie counting. I am no longer doing that. However, because I did do that. I sorta know how many calories my breakfasts are because I am eating the same yogurts and same amount of cereal for crunch and same banana size too. And my lunches are consistent. I eat salad or steamed veggies 5 days a week for lunch. It sucks. It's not fantastic. But, I'm sticking to it. It's not what I *want* to eat but it's what I *have* to eat. And a sensible dinner. I had this last night. I did add rice this time. About 40 grams of rice. Broccoli and a marinated chicken leg quarter. I do allow myself to have soda for dinner twice a week, but so far, I have not had any except when I went out for my birthday dinner. I also love that the calories are readily on the menu at Jolly Pasta so I know I did not exceed the calories I allotted for myself that night. 
If I really get sick of eating salad for lunch, I will have a package of broccoli or corn and this particular afternoon I made some calavacitas (corn and zucchini) I used 3/4 teaspoon (not TBS) of butter when cooking. And very little salt. 

The first week, when I was all weighing and calorie counting. I lost 2 KG. That means for us Americans a little over 4 pounds. 4 pounds and 6.5 ounces to be exact, So 4 pounds would be fair to say. And that was JUST for 7 days. I lost 4 pounds in 7 days. Seeing that huge weight decrease in such a short time frame... definitely fired me up to keep going. Oh and why this picture? This is how much 4 poundsis. This is what 4 pounds looks like. Basically this amount just fell right off my body. Honestly...say what you want...but that's amazing! 4 pounds in 1 week. Holy crap! That's awesome. 

Yet these are great visuals and they are indeed 1 pound bags. 

Then...I stopped insanely calorie counting and weighing but I kept things still as is. And guess what. I lost 3 KG. Total so far now. And yes...that's 6 pounds fellow Americans! Technically 6 pounds 9.8 ounces. But holy cow...6 pounds is a huge weight loss. Like amazing! Oh and I only get on the scale every Thursday. So...I still love carbs. I still have heart eyes when I think of them. It's just...I'm being very low carb right now. And really watching what I eat. I do not think I should allow myself to lose more than 15 pounds... because I'm not a big girl to begin with. I'm a normal sized girl. But...honestly...I can only imagine what I will look like or how much I will have lost by the time Branden has his high school entrance ceremony. Beach...pools, I am waiting for you! : )
The Facts of Life comes on one of my cable channels. And I try to get all my daily house stuff out of the way before it comes on. This show was my favorite growing up. And so, I enjoy watching this a couple times a week. My favorite character on here was Jo!: )
I do like to watch ghost shows sometimes. Like, "A Haunting" or Paranormal Lockdown. My Ghost Story and Kindred Spirits are my 4 favorites. However a new one just started and it's called Ghost Brothers! Three guys go hunting for ghosts. They visit haunted locations. One of the guys is this guy right here...his name is Juwan. 

These 3 guys right here. And see the right hand bottom corner it says...All new Ghost Brothers. On the TLC channel. I love this show. It's so funny! OMG, these guys crack me up! My dad is even watching this show now too! 

These 3 are always trying to scare each other...meaning the other team members. For example, 1 of them left a creepy doll on the darkened stairs and so when the 2 were about to walk the purely dark stairs, the flashlight hit that creepy doll and he was like..."nope I'm gonna bounce!!!" I was dying laughing! This show is hilarious. Then another time these 3 were in a basement of a known haunted house, pictured here and one was using his ghost detector and the green dots near the guy was a ghost! And so he says..."Umm I'm sorry to tell you Juwan but I think there is a ghost right next to you!!!!" He was like WHAT??? Bye I'm outta here. And another time one of the guys said..."hi ghost, if you're in this house will you please touch one of us, so we know you're here" The other guys goes..."Umm speak for yourself, do NOT touch me...touch him!!!"

What else have I been watching? Well The Blacklist isn't on right now. I think the seasons over. And the new ones come back in April? However a new show is on and it's called. The Blacklist: Redemption. Tom is the star or main character and while I *love* the original Blacklist. With James Spader. This new one with the character Tom as the main character sucks. I miss the regular Blacklist. This is apparently a spin off. I watched 1 or 2 episodes but I'm not digging this spin-off Blacklist: Redemption at all. Tom's okay as a side character but he can't carry a whole show! Prison Break is also been rebooted too. Yes, Michael Scofield (Wentworth Miller) is alive! Anyway that's enough for now.

Noah's started Spring break Friday at 11am. Noboru picked him up at school since I was at the hair salon. And I brought the kids back some lunch on the way home, since I was in the city. McD's is a rare treat since we don't have one in our town. I had a salad at home. So everyone is our house is on Spring break. No school. And we're just enjoying time here at home. I had yogurt for breakfast this morning. Although I made everyone else pancakes. And a salad for lunch. However, I am having some chicken alfredo with fettucini and some broccoli florets at home tonight and I am so exited. : ) LOL. Have a good Sunday everyone. : ) 

Friday, March 24, 2017

My birthday...

March is my birthday month. March 22nd is my actual birthday date. I'm an Aries. I'm not into horoscopes at all... whatsoever... but in case someone's wondering, there ya go. LOL. Since it was my birthday month anyway...I just made sure I had a proper pampering a bit here and there all through the month of March. I had known (USA) ships to Japan for ages. However I have yet to place an order since I usually shop their actual store... when I'm in the states. But...ehh with it being my birthday month. I thought why not! I deserve it! : ) 
Just eyebrow products. Anastasia Beverly Hills products. And a pack of blotting papers. Dipbrow, a Brow Wiz and a brow pencil. And a brush with spoolie for using the brow pomade with. 

This isn't available in Japan and it wasn't even sold at the Singapore Sephora, not that we made it there anyway, but I did check though. So, I was happy to have placed my order. I received my order before Branden's JHS graduation. I say that... because I used some of these brow products on myself for his graduation on March 9th. 

Everyone seems to love the Brow Wiz and the brow pomade. I really don't ever hear talk about the brow pencil. And I have been using it since I received it and I love it. It's not waxy *at all* and it glides on and the color is a dead on match for my hair color. I have yet to try the Brow Wiz yet. 

Medium brown. The perfect ashy brown color that matches my hair color. 

Brow pomade in medium brown too. 

These smell like peppermint. And I will save these for summer. Japanese summers are very hot and I think this will be fantastic when summer hits : )

Love the brush and love the spoolie. Her (Anastasia's) spoolies are actually trademarked by the way. Like cult like status... her spoolies are! Hmm that sounded very Yoda-y didn't it? LOL.

What else did I get for my birthday? A new cell phone. Let me start off by saying. My cell phone I was using before this phone. Was so old. Like we're talking dinosaur status. Like way of the dodo type cell phone! So old...many of my apps wouldn't even work or run! LOL. This drove my husband and kids crazy! It drove them so nuts! For husband said. Your phone is too old, let me buy you a phone! I was like..."nope, no thank you. As long as my phone can make calls. That's all I need." This drove everyone in my family absolutely bonkers. To be fair to me, I hate change. I start cooking dinner everyday at around the same time. I clean my house usually on the same days. Same day to clean Noah's room each week for example that sort of thing. Same day to clean the shower room twice weekly. I like and thrive on routine. That way...I stay very organized. It doesn't mean I don't have fun or anything though. But...I just like order and routine. So the thought of changing my phone and having all sorts of new buttons (okay not real buttons but ykwim) and apps. Hmm. Not exactly too appealing. But yep...I finally did it. And fwiw...the ONLY reason I changed phones is because my old phone was slowly dying and it got to the point that if I left my home and my phone was 100% charged and if I drove to pick up the kids from school it would be 10% charged by the time I'd get home. Considering it's a 5 minute drive form my house...ummm. The battery was dying... the phone was near death. So that's the only reason I finally changed phones. I have extended family who change their phones once a year.. just because they want the new model. And well...that's just not me. I keep my phone so long, too long. Like forever. : )

I bought a gold phone, I always knew if I were to ever get a new phone it would be gold. I bought an Android because I prefer Androids. And I bought one specifically with a super long lasting battery. Could be because I'm still recovering from the trauma of my last cell phone and it's short battery life, lol.

This battery lasts days and days and days on 1 charge. It even can power up other phones...which I wouldn't...but this battery is insane. And that's why I picked this one. I also didn't want to pick an expensive phone. Some phones now days are like 60,000 yen. Umm, no way am I spending US$600 bucks on a phone. I wanted to spend only 20,000 yen. And this was like a little over that but close to it. So, I was happy. It was affordable. The color I wanted they had and with a long battery. 

Noboru also purchased me a screen protector and a clear bendy case which I love. 

I love how my phone looks. But how do I like my new phone? Ummm...honestly? I love the new battery.'s too new for me still. I have so many apps and things that were not on my old phone. I guess...I'm still getting the hang of it. It will take me a long time to get used to this new phone. So, I like it...but I'm not used to it yet. Put it this way...on my old phone Noboru would LINE message me and I could pick up my old phone with 1 hand and message and reply within 30 seconds. Because the familiarity with my old phone was there. With this new phone? Noboru messaged me a few days ago and it took me a solid 5 minutes to reply. Because well for starters these new phones have ...fingerprint scans to unlock your phone so no one else can see your phone or read your messages but you. So, by the time I unlocked my phone with my index finger...and found the LINE app and clicked that...5 minutes had passed already. @_@  So umm, not quite second nature status yet. But I'm trying. 

So my main gift from Noboru this year for my birthday was a new phone. 
From my dad, I received electronic gift cards from (USA) and Old and Gap (USA). And I will show you now what I picked. Also, many of the DVDs are too new and not able to ship but as soon as they can ship they will. I ordered the movie Fifty Shades Darker. 
I picked the movie A Dog's Purpose. This will flat out make you cry. And I can't wait until my copy gets to me. I'm so excited to get this.
Silence. A movie about missionaries who come to Japan and go missing. And I wanted to go and see this at the movies. However, it's 3 hours or so long? And nobody wanted to sit in the movies for 3 long hours. This drove me crazy...because this movie looks so good. And I really wanted to see it. It was available in English in the little city nearest me. However...nobody wanted to sit for a 3 hour movie. So...I was glad to order the DVD...that way I can see this at home. And pause it if anyone wants to go to the restroom or whatnot. : ) 
I like watching movies that show interracial relationships. I especially have huge respect for the couples from the olden days especially. Because it must have been super hard back in those days. I do own the DVD, Dragon the Bruce Lee Story that talks about Linda ( a white woman) marrying Bruce Lee. It's such a good story. And when I saw this commercial for this movie...I was Stunned because it looked like a story needing to be shared. They were literally arrested for being in love. Interracial  marriage was flat out illegal in the old days. And this movie will be showing one couple and their story. I can't wait to get this DVD. 
I Am Sam, this movie is not new. But it's awesome. Sean Penn was brilliant in this. And I really wanted to have this in my collection. I also love the soundtrack to this. If I recall the whole soundtrack was Beatles songs. But by different artists though. 
Warmer weather is almost upon us. It's still frankly too cold for shorts weather and short sleeve weather in my part of Japan right now. But...I figured... might as well order a few pieces that will be appreciated and well loved this coming summer. I loved this cheeky black tee. And think it will go great with a pair of skinny bermuda length jean shorts and some low top black converse or flip flops.

These capri pants with draw string waist. The material is so light and will be so perfect once summer hits. And will be perfect in Japan since we dress a little more conservative and respectful in Japan. Meaning you rarely see folks in tank tops or booty shorts here. And if I were to take a flight, I could wear the Pardon my French top and these light weight capris and a distressed jean jacket and some flip flops or low top black converse and I'd be ready to go! : )
A navy blue top with cute ocean waves and I do love the beach, so I love this. And like the girl is wearing jean shorts I will probably wear mine with jean shorts or the navy shorts down below. 

Navy colored shorts. I own the black pair and tan pair of these exact same shorts already. I love these and I love the length... perfect for Japan. Can't wait to get these in preppy navy!
This black shirt is so cute. I also picked this tee in a color called berry smoothie. The bottom of the top is rounded. 

I also picked up the same capri drawstring pants in that airy material in army green. I got these pants on sale for $14 a pair. And a lot of my tops were on sale for US $8. 
Aha this is the top in berry smoothie. See the rounded bottom. It's super cute and having it in black and also this color will be great to wear with jean shorts this summer. The rounded bottom looks super feminine. : )

I also loved this green tee too. And with a pair of denim bermuda length roll up shorts this will be so cute. 

This top had so many likes and good comments. Everyone who ordered this... loved it so much. I a very preppy dresser and with a pair of denim shorts and a pair of low top black converse...sorry if I'm sounding like a broken record here but...yeah this is going to be so cute. So yeah...I have 2 pair of denim shorts from last year and a pair of black shorts and tan shorts from last year that are still like brand new, so I will be wearing those plus adding these new pieces in too. : ) Slowly but surely. Warmer clothing ready...I'm getting there. Also the kids have been getting new summer stuff too, but their stuff will not be on this post...since this is just my birthday post. : )
Why did we fly back to Japan so early Tuesday morning? When we could have flown back Tuesday evening instead? Well because...Noboru was set to work on my birthday March 22nd. But...he had off March 21st, which is the day we flew back to Japan. So we had a family plan to go out for my birthday dinner Tuesday night versus Wednesday night. Which is more than fine. And because he had so many days to take off this month (Bran's JHS graduation, Noah's observation day, etc etc, I told him, not to take off for my birthday because the kids events were more important) Where did I pick to go for my birthday dinner? Jolly Pasta of course. : ) We started off with some appetizers of garlic bread. 

We each had a mini pizza that came with our pastas. We also each had a drink bar too.

We all ordered pastas. And we 4 talked and talked. Branden told us stories of karaaoke and we were laughing hearing so many funny stories. And we told him our Guam stories too. We ate. We talked. We laughed. And then we drove the 1 hour drive back to our town. This is in *real* rural Japan. When everything delicious or good is hours away from where you live! Hahaha. : )

It was a day early but...we all had birthday cake. And my family sang so loud for me! I was laughing...that's how loud they sang! They're silly, they're funny and they always make me laugh. Ice-cream flavors..I almost forgot. Maple walnut and banana was the second flavor on my ice-cream cake. So anyway...that's the long and short of my birthday! It was wonderful! : )

Oh....I also went to the hair salon yesterday. I got 30% off since it is my birthday month, they sent me a postcard with the 30% off last month, for the month of March. That's why it is being mentioned in my birthday post. As you know my hair stylist is taking a 1 year absence due to her being pregnant. So, I am now just seeing any stylist who is available. I had a reservation yesterday morning at 9am. To get a Japanese thermal hair straightening. And a hair cut. My hair coloring, I am doing at home now and so far so good. I had a guy stylist yesterday. How do I like my hair? I love it. My hair is so super straight, so shiny and glossy and sleek. And my hair is all one length to my shoulders. I am so glad I got 30% off. Plus I needed to get my hair done before Bran's entrance ceremony. So hair is all ready. : )