Saturday, November 04, 2017

Branden's Birthday...

We always go out to dinner when it's someone in our family's birthday. Branden's birthday is October 26th and it fell on a Thursday this year. Noboru had to work that day. So we decided it would be best for us to go out for an early birthday dinner celebration on Monday October 23rd instead. We asked Branden what he'd like to eat, which restaurant he'd like to go to... since it's his birthday. Would he like to go to a Steakhouse? Yakiniku? Cappricciosa? The Outback Steakhouse? His choice 100%. He picked Jolly Pasta. It was a fantastic choice. The quality of food there is quite high. It's no Saizeriya. Granted Saizeriya is perfect for a quick meal on the cheap on a regular day, and we go there for regular times (not birthdays) But Jolly Pasta's quality is perfect for a birthday and the fact you can get an all you can drink... drink bar too, if you order that. It's awesome. Also another super cool thing is. Our nearest Jolly Pasta is in Chiba City. Chiba City is quite far from where we live in rural Chiba nearly 1 second away from Ibaraki. It takes us a full hour to drive there. And 1 full hour to drive back to the countryside. But...lucky for us...Ibaraki has finally got it's 2nd Jolly Pasta in Ibaraki prefecture and it's actually a quick drive for us...with all rural country roads with no/zero stop lights. So it's a fast 30 minute drive there for us, from our house. So half closer for us. It's brand new, just opened at the end of September. September 27th or something. So we now have a closer to us Jolly Pasta. As a family who lives way out in the middle of's amazing that we finally have a closer to us Jolly Pasta in Ibaraki. So that's where we were Monday October 23rd. It was a day of no school/canceled school because of the typhoon. And so we zipped there around 4pm. Arrived near 4:30pm.

They have delicious pasta and pizza combos. We each picked a pasta and pizza combo each. 

Our family loves that chili oil they have at Jolly Pasta. Branden was using it in this pic. On our way out, we bought one of the chili oils. Yum. We have been using it at home ever since. Dinner was fantastic. We had such a good time there. Dinner was delicious. 

Noboru had a hot coffee at the restaurant before we left and the kids and I each had a hot cocoa to drink before we left and drove home. 
We had cake and ice-cream to celebrate on Monday after we got back from dinner. And cake all week long even on Branden's actual birthday. 

A bit blurry, but Bran blowing out his birthday candles. We all enjoyed some cake and ice-cream. 

Birthday money for the birthday teen. 20,000 yen from us. $200 from the best greatest grandpa in the universe. 5,000 yen from grandma Mitsuko. 

Just some of what grandpa had to say. How lovely. Branden saves all of grandpa's birthday cards and so does Noah too. So do I. : )

We also bought Branden a brand new Ultra Light down winter coat from Uniqlo. It's not a school coat. It's for weekends. It's in navy blue. And as for his birthday money...Branden is saving his money until he figures out what he should buy. Branden has a laptop, just got it this year. He also has a super nice tablet and a nice cellphone too. He has clothes. Honestly...he really doesn't need or want for anything really. But we still wanted to celebrate him. And so...whenever he decides what he wants to use with his birthday money...he'll let us know. But for now. He's saving it. Smart kid. : )
Also now that Bran is in high school. And his birthday fell on a Thursday/school day. Some of his closest friends bought him these things on his birthday, while at school. Just small little acts of kindness which I thought were so cool! High school in Japan is so fun! They sang him Happy Birthday. The class announced it. He basically felt special all day long. He was truly beaming and smiling ear to ear, by the time he came home from school that day. And for his actual birthday dinner. I made a great big pot of pork green chili and a pot of beans. And we had bowls of pork green chili and beans and tortillas for his simple but homemade from scratch birthday dinner. It was so delicious. And we had birthday cake and ice-cream for dessert. And that's about it. : ) Happy Birthday Branden. I can barely believe you're 16 years old kiddo! We love you!!!