Sunday, March 15, 2015

updates...

it's been forever since I've blogged.   Somehow life has filled itself to capacity!  I feel like by the time I get a moment to relax- it's time to go pick up the boys from school! and then it's homework, chores, swim lessons, english lessons, meetings, dinner, kent comes home, and suddenly it's time for bed.  but here are a few of our recent adventures!

at the end of our vacation last month- I had to go into Tokyo for an MRI.  we don't have one on base and so they send us downtown to the International Hospital to get certain tests done or see certain specialists.  Back when I was about 6 months pregnant with mack- I had bilateral vision loss accompanied with numbness in one side of my body and in my tongue! it only last a few minutes- and then a headache followed so we thought it was a migraine.  The day I delivered it happened again.  Two big blind spots in the center of both eyes.  This time I wasn't sure about any other symptoms because I was in so much pain from having Mack/getting my spinal headache, etc.  And then 1 month ago- the vision loss happened again. Kent wanted me to go and talk to my doctor this time since it was obviously no longer pregnancy related. I'd told my OB and the Nurse Anesthetist - but neither seemed concerned.  My doc thought it was probably migraines- but since I've not had regular or typical migraines in the past -he wanted an MRI to rule anything else out.

I booked it while Kent was on leave so we could make a day of it!  friends got the boys from school and took metta for us- and we took the train downtown for the day!

Here's my lovely Japanese MRI outfit.  getting an MRI is not a super pleasant experience :)  It was my very first scan of any sort.  I am not claustrophobic at all- but I have a hard time lying still - especially on my back!  I wanted to move my legs SO BADLY.  luckily it was only about 25 minutes! it felt like forever.

the scans came back normal- with the exception of a moderate to severe sinus infection covering all parts of my face!  I'm not congested at ALL- but my gums have been numb and I've had some bad teeth pain.  Although I always have teeth pain so I didn't think  much of it besides thinking I may need ANOTHER root canal!  I am now on some antibiotics because the doc told me some horror story about a lady who had an infection like mine that didn't bother her- and it ended up eating into her brain and she had to be med-evacuated immediately off base to Hawaii!!  let's hope the infection gets wiped out :) and that my vision stays intact!  I haven't had any more episodes.  They are probably just atypical migraines.

After my MRI- we spent the day in Tokyo shopping and eating!
this picture is from Barbacoa- a Brazilian churrascaria.  It's all of the red bloody meat I wouldn't eat. I try to ask for the burnt edges because I do NOT like rare meat.  Kent was in heaven.  He had guarana and those miniature cheesy bread rolls (pao de queijo), too.
we also went to Magnolia's!  I'd never been in the states- so I tried it here :)   My hummingbird cupcake was divine.
 these sweet Japanese girls offered Kent and I their seats on the train!  kids ride the trains and busses and walk to school all by themselves starting as young as kindergarten!  really- Japan is such a safe and pleasant country.
oh- and I had to take a picture of this food!  It was also on our vacation week- but earlier on.  We went to Mike's Tex-Mex - a restaurant near base.  It's the first mexican food I've had since we got here and maybe I've been gone too long to remember what good Mexican food tastes like- but this food was AMAZING!!  so so so tasty.  I miss Mexican food.

Last weekend was cold and rainy so we went to a local museum where they had some presentations on ancient Japan life!  they were so friendly to our kids. I love that the language barrier is so much less significant for children,
we toured this old japanese house and learned how to keep the fire going! the group of kids that were there with us were all special needs.  It was a really fun afternoon for all of us.
 mack had a fabulous time as well.  isn't this so cute?  he isn't our friendliest kid- but when he does give you a smile- it's a good one!
Yesterday to celebrate Pi day- we went to Fujiya to eat.  Its an ALL YOU CAN EAT cake buffet!!!!!! seriously. ALL you can eat!!   Japan LOVES all you can eat buffets.   The only difference here vs america is that there is always a time limit. Usually 60-90 minutes for a set price.  

I was super impressed with the cakes here.  they were really really delicious. BUT- in order to get your next piece of cake- you HAD to finish the first cake! your plate had to be empty to refill.  
and all so fresh!!

 If you couldn't tell- one of our favorite parts of Japan is discovering the new food.  Honestly- that's the best part of living anywhere new!  discovering all the dives and holes in the wall!!  last week we got a sitter for all of the kiddos and went to Un Quinto- a teeny Italian place in Fussa.  It was the best Italian food I've EVER had.  the Gorgonzola cream sauce gnocchi tasted like little heavenly pillows.  and the stone pot lasagna with freshly made pasta was unreal.  we also got an avocado caesar salad.  who knew?! amazing Italian in Japan! the chef made everything as you ordered it! 
Last week we also took our English students- Sachiko, Keiko, and Aki- to Chili's on base and made them practice ordering food and paying for it.  Plus- we taught them words like 'fajita and quesadilla'.  We should get bonuses for teaching them spanish!!  they are the nicest people. and so much fun!!  it really is such a great experience for us and our kids.  I want to leave Japan with Japanese friends and some of the culture mixed into ours. this is such a great way to do it!
I went to a Japanese Antique sale this week, too. There are SO many 'shrine sales' here. Basically they are giant yard sales.  and I LOVE them.  there are so many treasures to be found. This week I had the GREATEST find:
An anatomy chart of the bones all in Kanji!!  it has a backside as well! I got it for Kent to put in his office.  I think it's pretty awesome and I was very excited when I spotted it.  it was cheap, too.  It was the perfect gift for Kent.  I was going to give it to him for Easter or Father's Day or something- but I couldn't wait and I just gave it to him when I got home!

last week after our visit to the museum we tried our first 'Okonomiyaki'.  I have no idea how I've lived in Japan for 8 months and just now found out about this type of food.  Okonomikyaki means : "whatever you want grilled".  It's a big mound of veggies and meat and egg that you turn into a giant pancake.  and it's delicious.  We also had giant rice triangles grilled on cheese!  I loved the giant cabbage pancake. 
Our waitress could tell we were newbies at the whole okonomiyaki thing and helped us make ours! we need to go back and try it without any help!
all of those 'japanese' tepanyaki places in the states are actually not Japanese at all.  Here you always do your OWN cooking on grills at your table.  They must  just have to adapt it in the states for legal reasons!  these hot grills and oil pits at tables would be lawsuits waiting to happen in the US!
and I don't think Americans like eating on tatami mats!  we've learned to love it!

finally- this week Zeb and Ike and I ran in a color run on base.  The boys had so much fun.  Strangely enough this was the first race I've done with my boys where they ran, too.  They have regular races on base that are FREE!  the boys loved it and are excited to do more.  I'm going to turn them into little runners!!

Ike loved his blue ear. 
and everybody loved the free stuff. apples, bananas, headbands, t-shirts, and all sorts of other great stuff.

I have a bunch of pictures of mack-a-roo that need posting so hopefully I'll have antoher post for tomorrow!

1 comment:

Annie Oswald said...

Tell me more about the English classes! Is this a Community or private or church activity?