Saturday, April 28, 2007

Drum roll please..........................

MY NEW KITCHEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You can NOT imagine how excited I am. It is awesome, sosososososososososo AWESOME!!! I absolutely LOVE the drawer system in the lower cabinets. I got ALL my mixing bowls, serving bowls, strainers, and pyrex baking dishes in ONE drawer! And they are so easy to take back out when I need them, because I can pull them out from above!

My burners LIGHT when I turn the knob!

My sink faucet doesn't fall off every time I turn on the water!

It isn't ugly pugly green anymore! and I have extra counter space, which you can't see all of in the picture but we had our friend extend the counter out to the right where the fridge used to be! You see the beginning of it to the right of the stove. We put some extra counter top on top of one of our newer cabinets we just bought after we married, and it extends all the way to the wall! I feel like I have a brand new house!

What an incredible dream come true for me. Glory to God and praise HIS might name for all the amazing ways He provides for us!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, April 20, 2007

A mother's heart....

(this first paragraph from Hana's blog, and then some Mommy thoughts at the end)

Well Hana had her first death in the family tonight. For Christmas Baba gave Hana a little ceramic dog that barks when it detects motion. I wondered how long he would last. He was supposed to be perched in our entryway to announce visitors, but there was no way I was going to put him there where he would also wake up a little girl all the time. And Hana also would not have stood for bow-wow living in the entryway. For weeks she has carried this puppy around as a toy, feeding him, putting him to bed, giving him baths (in available card board boxes) and just generally loving on him like she does all her favorite dolls and stuffed toys. I was amazed that a ceramic dog was so appealing to a two year old, but she loved him. Probably partially because he was a gift from one of her favorite people. Well tonight while preparing herself and bow-wow for bed, Hana was carrying him and she tripped and fell on top of him. Mommy was at the gym, so Daddy was on hand to witness the event, and unfortunately bow-wow broke! Daddy says she was really upset that bow-wow met with the end of his life as her toy. We could glue him back together, but I think he would just meet the same fate again soon, and I would rather her not keep playing with a cermaic toy (although sturdy it was) so we are going to bury bow-wow tomorrow. Or maybe just let bow-wow disappear overnight.

I'm so sad for her, that something so precious to her has to go away. I understand now so much of what my own mother went through in my childhood. She used to be so happy with me, often happier than I was when I had some great thing happen to me. And she also grieved with me, when sad things happen, and I often wondered why SHE was crying about my cat dying or my brother's dog being run over, etc. She would always tell me that what made me happy made her happy and what made me sad made her sad. Now I understand. If I had been here when bow-wow broke, I probably would have cried with Hana. I cry when she gets shots, or just when having to be checked by a doctor makes her so upset. When she is sick, I think I feel worse for her that she feels so miserable, than she probably actually feels. And when she is happy, my heart soars!

Now I understand Mom!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

One more blog today...

Don't miss the earlier blog entry about our great day trip but I had to blog again about something more exciting! God is providing for us in amazing ways again! He's made a way for us to get our kitchen remodeled, when we thought it was going to be several years before we could get this done! Praise praise praise! Because truely, my gas stove was so old and falling apart I was concerned about safety, and the Lord is providing for us to get all new cabinets and a new stove! In about two weeks I won't have to use a lighter to light my burners anymore, the handle won't pop off of my faucet every time I use it anymore, and I won't have to kick anymore cabinet doors to get them to shut!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here is what our kitchen looks like now...

and here is what it is going to look like very soon (except without the dishwasher in the middle, and the sink and stove will be reversed)

I am so excited I can hardly contain myself!!!!!!!!!!!!! No more 70's puckey green! AND the lower cabinets are drawers! This new cabinet system is so popular in Japan because it is so much easier to store things down low in drawers, and I never dreamed I get to have all new cabinets with the drawer system, THIS SOON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Day trip...

We had an AWESOME day today! A local pastor has been wanting to take us to his hometown to meet his family and see his land so we set a date and headed off this morning for a two hour drive. Sensei comes from the "kuuuntry" (a.k.a. the boon-docks, ten buck two, the middle of nowhere, etc.) It is really rare to see areas this rural for us, we are often in the city here. Oh, it felt like home for me today (if it had been flat and windy, an a lot less green that is). But the fact that their neighbors where at least 100 paces away, the roads where barely wide enough for two cars to meet, and sensei kept giving me directions in distance instead of landmarks, made me feel right at home! We LOVED it! It was a day full of lots of clean fresh air, beautiful scenery, no need to hurry, lots of good food and a good ol' hot spring bath. Talk about a GREAT day!

Sensei comes from a family of 6 brothers and sisters. We met three of his sisters today and they fed us and spoiled us rotten! We had a great time getting to know them, and eating their wonderful home cooking. There is just something about the hospitality of kuuuntry folk, you just can't beat it.

We ate lunch at Sensei's sisters house, which is on the land where he was born and raised. He took us walking up into the mountains where he used to play as a child. Showed us the natural cold spring that feeds a creek he used to play in, a small piece of land that he owns and took us down the tiny narrow road that he used to take to school as a child (by the way it took him ONE HOUR to walk to school everyday, no such thing as a school bus here!) Then we went to visit his old elementary school and Jr. High. Another sister works at a hotel where they have hot spring baths so we stopped in there and had a relaxing bath, then went to another sisters house for a "light" dinner (NOT!) I am so stuffed it feels like I just got home from Granny's house at Thanksgiving!

It was so wonderful to have such a leisurely relaxing day, but at the same time getting to know his family and sharing our lives with them was a ministry to them too. We laughed and carried on, and Hana charmed them all! We got to love on them today and fill their homes with the Spirit of Jesus peace and grace. We even sang songs to "pay for our meal" at both homes where we ate and they loved it. It was such an awesome day.

We dream of having a retreat cabin in a place like that some day. A place to escape to for a short time, that is so peaceful and beautiful! You can take the girl out of the country but you can't take the country out of the girl (or her Texas loving Japanese husband... hahaha)

I don't often realize how much I miss the country but I guess I do. Today was so wonderful, we made Sensei promise to take us back again sometime soon!

Flowers at a local country club, breathtaking!

Just under this bridge is the origin of the natural spring Sensei used to play in.

The view from a small opening in the forest near Sensei's land (there are more mountains in the background that you can't see cause it was a little hazy)

Hana walking down the small forest road in front of the land.

That small mountain in the middle of this picture is his land.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Thought you might enjoy...

My hubby's beautiful cherry blossom pictures! He's a pretty good photographer, gotta get him a good camera!!!!!! (someday soon sugarpie!)