Friday, August 30, 2013

Kyoto. Take Two

I had already visited Kyoto once before. I thought I had a pretty decent idea of how to tour the area but the truth is a hired private tour guide is probably the way to go. Because Kyoto is such a busy city, the old capital of Japan, and top priority for many sightseeing visitors it is not easy to get around quickly. Especially if one decides to visit the day of one of Kyoto's famous festivals. But we did it anyway and enjoyed the parade and culture along with a few shrines and temples. Kyoto, you are still one of my favorite cities.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Hiroshima - May 2013

You read that right, MAY 2013, I won't even apologize for being this late on this post or the next few for that matter. I just have not felt like editing pics, writing posts, or doing much of anything except resting and feeling baby move around constantly. Oh yeah and eat. Plus I am pretty sure pregnancy excuses me for such tardiness. I'm working on some virtual nesting to get caught up on all the posts I have planned and want to write about so for the next couple of days while Brandon is gone on a short road trip I plan to tackle them with a vengeance.

Hiroshima. It's heart wrenching, tragic, and hard to completely capture the devastation that took place. It is a quiet place, one where most are there to pay respects or learn of a significant historical event. I'm not a history buff so I won't get into the war and reasons for the bombing but below are photos of and around Peace Park Memorial including the A-Bomb Dome and Children's Peace Monument.


Hiroshima Castle

Sunday, August 18, 2013

7 and Counting

Baseball in August. I don't love it. But I don't have to. It's hot, high 90's and the team is on the road for most of it. Brandon has been gone the past week and won't be back until the late Thursday. While he is gone I have more time to miss home and I do. I think it has more to do with knowing the next chapter, the baby chapter, is quickly approaching and I'm ready to do some things to get us ready for that. I've loved Japan and all it's brought this year but I'm ready to pack up from this season and get home.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Round Here

For starters, Brandon is gone on a long road trip and I thought about going along but with the heat I just decided I'll tag along in September. Also maybe by then I will have adjusted my wardrobe to have enough outfits that fit instead of Brandon's gym shorts. Stylish, I know.

As of today we are in the 19th week of this roller coaster ride of pregnancy. I must say that with each day I'm loving it more and more. Especially since I've been feeling the baby moving around. Mostly late in the evening (a little night owl like me) or after a big meal.


While that number is slowly counting up, we are also counting down until we COME HOME! I think its around 56 days until the last regular season game, not that I keep track. We already started trying to make some travel arrangements home to save on expenses but since we don't know for sure what day we can leave nothing is final. Sure is exciting talking about it though!

Besides that I've been working on clothing projects for a friend. Which entails borrowing a sewing machine, which is absolutely fine by me. Here are a few of the things I've been making. I thought for sure after five months I would lose some of my skills but I actually think not sewing for that long made me better. I don't want to do it again, just looking at the bright side.

I know it's a bit ridiculous but, the bear was all I had and I needed to check for size. It feels SO good to be making stuff again. Plus I am getting in some good practice before our own little one arrives, especially if it is a she.
And that is all that goodness happening around here. Growing a baby and sewing with a little bit of baseball and lot of missing our dog!


Saturday, August 3, 2013

Baseball Mom's, a Thank You.

First things first - don't teach yourself an awesome skill that will come back to haunt you. Say maybe something like making a peach cobbler. I sat down to find a recipe for a peach blueberry cobbler and decided that three cobblers in less than two weeks might be overkill BUT truthfully we don't have a lot of other junk food in the house so I guess it evens out.
Totally not what I sat down to say. I didn't even intend to write today but my heart is still full and overflowing from the past week here on the island and I thought I'd share a little about what has been going on.
There are two teams that get housed on the island. There are a total of nine American families, fifteen children ages 18 months all the way up to seven year old twins. Three of the families are expecting babies this off season, us being one of them, and another recently adopted a one month old here in Japan. Careful drinking the water.
Within the last month, one of the moms and her two kiddos headed back to the States to be home in time for school to start. Then this past Monday two more families and four total kids learned they would be relocating as well. This is my least favorite part of the baseball life. At the beginning of this year I had no idea what type of women I would meet this year and get the privilege to spend this season. Wow did I get lucky!
To be honest, I often found myself not spending time with them for a few reasons. First, they all have the common bond of children so they would hang while their cute kiddos were running off their excess energy. Second, because I don't mind and enjoy spending time by myself working on craft projects or spending time with Brandon or family traveling to sight see new areas of Japan. Sometimes our schedules just didn't line up and I was okay with it.
But then of course, I found myself wanting to hang out with them and their kids, maybe the kids more, and the opportunities presented themselves for that to happen. While Brandon was on the road I was invited to dinner countless times by one of our teammates and was always entertained by their three awesome children. Or we would go to Costco, without their kids, and I could see just how much each of these mom's loved their kids, but also loved the afternoon free of mom duty.
On Thursday when we had to say some goodbyes it hit me just how much I've grown to admire and respect the baseball moms of this season. Heck not just the moms but the dads too. Seriously, every single one of them in one way or another has taught me something that I hope to be able to remember in the next few years. Somehow they make it work. From taking care of their husbands, keeping the kids occupied, disciplined, happy, fed, etc, putting dinner on the table (delicious amazing dinners I might add), and so much more, in a foreign country. It seems so overwhelming but they all make it look easy.
And then there is a special gift they've given to me that they probably don't even realize. When I'm with their kiddos, or watching them play, it makes me SO excited to be a mom.  Listening to all of them at the different ages and the things they do and ask. I don't need to be around kids to be excited for my own, I've always had a special place in my heart for them, but it has made this pregnancy and this season here in Japan that much more enjoyable. So to those momma's, thank you, for sharing your kids with me and letting me have a little bit of the joy that I know they bring you. I will never forget our time here and it won't just be about baseball, but the relationships that were made and memories shared.  Okay enough on that before the hormones start raging, it's cobbler time.