Thursday, November 25, 2010

Ramune aka Japanese Soda Drink with Marble in the Bottle

A description of the origin of ramune is here. But basically the one I got tastes like Sprite. It comes with a plastic plug looking piece that you press into the top of the bottle. This releases a hidden marble into the bottle. It also caused mine to fizz like a volcano all over my counter top. :)  It is difficult to drink at times because the marble blocks the flow of liquid.  But the kids loved playing with it.  It is a pretty cool novelty drink although it was way too sweet for my liking.  The marble, apparently, is extremely difficult to remove without breaking the bottle. I used pliers and couldn't budge the plastic top. But I'm pretty sure the movers packed my bottle for me! :) So atleast I got a cool souvenir!! :)

Bottle after removing the plastic wrap that covered the cap.

Bottle with plug sitting on top just after I popped it. If you look closely you can see the clear liquid puddled around the bottle.

See the marble covered in bubbles?

Tilted so you can see the marble.

Chug it Bella!!

Chug Chug Chug!

I love the tongue sticking out while looking at the marble!

Looking for the marble. :)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Reminiscing (2005)

We are nearing the end of our stay in Okinawa. It has been an amazing 5 years. This is home to our kids and is a part of their lives they will never forget.  We decided to go back to where it all began.  Our 1st duty station, our first overseas tour and our 1st military house.  1319 Chatan

*current family photo at the old house :)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Happy Veterans Day!

A Veteran is someone, who at one point in their life, wrote a

blank check

payable to the United States of America for an amount up to,


including, their life. That is beyond honor. Today is the day

we salute you! 

 Support the Troops.
*(photo of my husband's return from one of his many deployments with all 3 of the kids)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Halloweenie Pumpkins

Today the kids and I carved our jack o' lanterns.  I asked them what they wanted on theirs. Chan did his own cause he is old enough to be trusted with a knife.  Bella wanted Dr. Barber from the Flapjack cartoon.  I wasn't sure I could do it, but I think it turned out rather well.  And Toph wanted a grunt from the Halo video game. That one looks okay, but I didn't know what they looked like.  We googled it and it was really complicated, so I did my best! Here are our pumpkins! :)

For those of you that don't know, this is Dr. Barber.

Halo Grunt

 Mr. Pumpkin Head

All of our pumpkins! :)

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Sad Day

Bella had her last day of preschool at Koza Seibo Yochien today.  The move is coming up soon and it was time to say goodbye.  Her class sang to her, then they each told her goodbye as they left for the day.  The class also made her a scrapbook to remember them by.  Each child drew her a picture or wrote something for her.  Her teacher told her Sayonara many times and kept coming back for just one more hug.  She was crying the whole time, which of course made me cry.  I have never been so sad to leave a school or a place before.  The love they have shown Bella is amazing and heartwarming. It is something we will never forget. And hopefully someday we can come back to visit Okinawa and her wonderful little school. :)

 Bella and her teacher Atsuko

A page from the scrapbook they made for her!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Another Spectacular Hat

I used April Draven's pattern for the convertible hat. I was running low on colors that I liked so I just mixed and matched these yarns.  They are all the Vanna's Choice yarns.  I really love this yarn. The colors are great, it is super soft and a bit fluffier than Red Heart worsted weights.  I seriously had a 6 inch scrap of the purple left when I finished.  If that's not cutting it close, then I don't know what is! I was going to make this hat as a gift since I had already made myself a hat for this winter, but now that it's finished I'm thinking I may need 2 hats this winter! ;)

Kawaii Onigiri!!!!

I made this as a gift for my daughter's teacher.  I really like it! I think I'll have to make more! :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Benimo (Okinawan Sweet Potato)

B's class went on a field trip to the sweet potato farm.  They got to go out and dig up as many as they could fit in their bags.  She had quite a few, her bag was too heavy for her to carry. I didn't want to waste them so I tried some different ways to cook them.

The benimo look like normal potatoes, but when you cut them open they reveal a gorgeous deep purple inside. The Okinawans use them to make ice cream, tarts & sweets. 

 I tried at first to fry some, like french fries. That didn't go so well. They were just kind of blah.  So I cubed and boiled some.  Then I mashed them with some butter and a bit of salt. YUMMY!!

What they look like after just being dug up.

I peeled these.

Peeled and cut open to show color.

Water after boiling benimo.

Steaming benimo hot off the stove.

Mashed with butter & salt.

Mashed again.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Visiting a Japanese Elementary School

I got a chance to chaperone my son's field trip to Jogaku Elementary in Naha, Okinawa.  It was such a neat experience.  We started off walking in circles and when the music stopped we would introduce ourselves to the person in front of us.  We all tried to do it in Japanese, while they tried in English.
Then they taught us some Eisa dancing. I was NOT coordinated enough to do it correctly, but I tried! :)
Then we all had a lunch of curry, corn dogs and salad.  Once lunch was over we got a quick tour of the school before we had to hop back on the bus.  I had chance to chat with one of the Japanese moms and she told me that the kids all clean the school. They put them in groups and each group cleans a certain part or does a certain "duty" as she called it.  They even clean the bathrooms!  Out of respect I'm not posting any photos with the kids' faces in them. So there are only a few photos and I also only had my son's point & shoot, so the photo quality is pretty sub par, but atleast the compositions look good! ;)

Super Sexy Green Slippers

Cubbies full of slippers.

Drums they used to teach us Eisa dancing.

My partner's legs & drum.

Super tiny bathroom slippers. Look out! It's BIG FOOT!!!

A classroom.

My son thought it was really cool that at his school they have a Japanese classroom and at this school they have an English classroom! :)

And last but not least my son getting ready to Eisa dance! :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

A Scarf for My Girl who Prefers Boy Stuff

I already made her the cupcake hat, so I figured why not a cupcake scarf to go with it?  She had asked for Bowser & Princess peach, but I didn't think I could make one small enough with those characters. So I made her a cupcake scarf. Yeah, so when I gave it to her she says, "Where's Bowser & Princess Peach?". I nicely told her that I couldn't fit them on there. We'll see whether she wears this scarf or not. She did like the cupcakes, she just REALLY wanted some Mario Bros. characters like her brothers got on theirs.

Hmmm... it was a free pattern, but it seems within the past few days it has changed and is no longer free. :(

Cute Bentos for the Kiddos

I decided to go super cute with the bentos today since B only has 4 more bentos until she is done with school.  The Hello Kitty egg was colored using food coloring and Q-tips.  It took a little more time than usual to make the bentos, but I think once we move I will have to better organize my bento making supplies.