Gaijin Housewife in Japan

Bringing you every day life in Japan to your part of the world.

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Reunions and teeth and shakes

I haven't been able to post for a while as I have been busier than one usually is with a 3month old and an exuberant dog!
My dear friend H from Australia was back in Iwaki for a week and so I had a great time catching up with her.
The reason she was here was because the Ministry of Foreign Affairs organised for some people who were in Japan on the JET programme to go back and visit the areas where they lived that were in the disaster affected areas. So H was one of 12 people in the whole world chosen to come back to Japan to bring cheer to her friends, co-workers, students and other acquaintances in Iwaki where she lived for 5 years. Well, her visit certainly cheered me up! It was so great to see an old friend and just catch up and hang out etc. Nothing special but it certainly made a difference to me and I am sure to the many other people she visited whilst she was here. So thanks a lot MoFA.

Amelia seems to be getting her first tooth. She has been a bit grizzly, drooly etc and doing a lot of tongue poking and chewing her fist so I think that must be why. I hope this tooth comes up soon! She quite likes sitting up these days, rather than reclining and tries to sit up by herself though it doesn't work yet. She gets a real kick out of "Takai takai" (high high)which is when you lift her up in the air over and over and we have been doing an age appropriate version of "row row row your boat", which gets lots of smiles and chuckles too. She had her first big bath tonight with me. It was really fun and thankfully no "Code Brown" emergencies.

Tonight was also very eventful in that we had a big earthquake. A high fiver, which are scary ones. It was the first time I have felt a big one like that and been downstairs in my house. It didn't feel too bad down there, just like an elephant was walking up behind me whilst I was sitting on the sofa. That's all. No damage, no interruption to power or anything. Amelia slept through it. Good girl.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Well it's Friday again

Before Amelia was born, I never really looked forward to the weekend as I still had to go to work. But now that I don't work outside of the house, I really look forward to weekends so that DH will be around to spend time with us. It's hard keeping the dialogue going when it's just you, a 3 month old and a dog. Admittedly Amelia is getting better at chatting when she is in a good mood, but our conversations are mostly an exchange of goos and gaas. 

This week she has started to find her feet sometimes and grab onto them. She also likes rolling onto her side and sucking her fist. Yesterday she was holding a rattle and carefully moving it around whilst she followed it with her eyes. All very exciting developments!

Last Sunday was the 6 month anniversary of the huge earthquake/tsunami/nuclear disaster. For those who don't live in Japan, you might not have seen much about Japan in the media these days. Unfortunately things are still very very far from getting better in some areas. We still regularly have shakes here in Iwaki. I'm trying not to stress out about the little ones. Our house can hack it as it has proved in the last 6 months. My neighbourhood is now full of temporary housing units set up for people evacuated from the exclusion zone around Fukushima Daiichi. The houses are quite small but nice looking from the outside and supposedly people from the same town are housed in the same areas together.  I have been a bit annoyed with the tv for taking various personalities into the exclusion zone to film for tv shows. Anyway, enough about that.

Next week is looking good! Along with two national holidays in one week, a good friend will be in town for a whole week on a "don't give up Iwaki" (がんばっぺいわき)mission. I haven't seen her for about 3 years so it will be great to catch up over some famiresu durinkuba- (All you can drink at a "family restaurant") like the old days, once Amelia is tucked up in bed.

Finally, as a reward for reading all of that! A picture of me (no make up, hair not done) and Amelia I snapped with my ipad.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Sebastian gets a hair cut

Just a few quick photos of Sebastian's new hair do. He was a bit traumatised since it took us so long to shave all his fur, but now he looks very sporty and summery!

Here he is before his hair cut tonight. Waiting on "The Table".
Here he is afterwards.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Happy Birthday Sebastian!

Basti turns one today. Well actually 7 in dog years I think it is. He is going to celebrate by having some apple at dinner time tonight. His favourite treat....well that and cucumbers, tomato, melon, nashi, carrots etc.
Poor Sebastian has been getting the rough end of the stick since we got back to Fukushima. In Tottori he was the centre of attention and had 3 adults wrapped around his paw. Here, he has to work hard to get attention, especially when Amelia is awake and often hangs around me hoping for a pat or for me to throw one of his toys for him. I do try to make time for him every day though. But when you are 7 years old, you probably want a bit more attention from mum than that.
We have had a lot of people coming round to see Amelia and Basti so he has had a lot of excitement really. Some friends came round last weekend and they brought a gift for Basti:
See him wearing it in this picture.
I am not a big fan of making animals wear clothes, but he looks so cute and stylish in this outfit I am going to make him wear it in winter on cold days I think.
 Yesterday we also purchased some clippers for shaving his coat as the cheap one we bought has already crapped out. So look out for some more pics of Basti with his new hair do next week sometime!
What has Amelia been up to recently? Well she has become quite er, demanding and strong willed in the last week or so. Looks like we might have our work cut out for us! :)  Growing up in leaps and bounds! This morning I went to get her up and found her lying in her bed in a completely different place to where I put her down! She can't roll over yet but somehow managed to wiggle her way there.  Here she is showing how she can almost kind of hold her bottle now.

Saturday, 3 September 2011

12 Weeks

Hello Everyone.

Well Amelia is now 12 weeks old and was weighed by the city midwife yesterday and is now up to 5315g. That is on the lower end of normal, so am relieved that what we are doing is still working. She has started sleeping from 7pm right through to 3-6am. This morning was nearly 6 before she woke up. She is the apple of her daddy's eye and when he is home they spend her every waking moment together when she is not attached to my boob. So that is really nice for me, I get a bit of a break to do stuff or to do nothing if I want. On Tuesday, DH was home from work so I went out on a my first real outing (going to the supermarket after Amelia has gone to bed doesn't count), by myself in 3 months. I went and got a hair cut. Also the first since I left Japan at the end of March, so feeling a little more like a real person with a decent hair cut from my regular stylist who does the best hair cuts I've ever had in my life.

I'm getting back to work this weekend, starting Sunday night. I know. Working on a Sunday night just seems wrong, but DH is home so I don't have to worry about Amelia if she does happen to wake up whilst I'm working and since it's from home, is not such a huge deal. Will be odd to get brain out of baby mode and back into English teaching mode. 

Sebastian has been pushing the boundaries a bit this last week or so. He is terribly bored during the day and amuses himself by looking for new things to steal and destroy. Luckily he has an iron gut considering the amount of paper and cardboard he seems to manage to eat before I can get it off him. Thankfully a plastic bottle will usually amuse him for a while when cabin fever really gets him. When it gets a bit cooler we will all be able to go out for walks a bit more often than now.

Gee, I didn't think this would turn out to be such a boring post, I thought I had more interesting things to say but it seems not! Will try harder next time.