Sunday, May 31, 2009
This is one animated movie that will appeal to older audiences just as much as it will to kids. I loved the scene where two old guys are fighting (sword against cane) and they both throw out their backs. Priceless.
Go see it.
Saturday, May 30, 2009
...and they brought fish.
Steve said "these can go in the freezer."
I said, "those aren't going in my freezer...guess what's for dinner?"
I hate having a fishy smell in the freezer - everything in the freezer ends up tasting like fish. Yuk. Better just to serve them up fresh. Maybe with a side of baby spinach.
Danny must be "The Fish Whisperer". It took him about 30 seconds to hook his first one - and about the same for the second. I'm not sure what he was using for bait - but the fish sure must have liked it.
Friday, May 29, 2009
And now a little space music....
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
I'm looking forward to a couple more movies that are coming "up" - yes, UP is one of them. There is also the new Harry Potter movie coming out in July (I think).
What movies are you looking forward to?
Monday, May 25, 2009
This past week in the Kansai area there hasn`t been school because of the swine flu. The idea is that by not having school it won`t spread to new areas I think. Still the weather last week was great and kids all the way up to college students took advantage of it by going to the parks and having barbecues and stuff. Normal spring vacation type stuff.
We`ve visited the Kinoshita family a few more times over the past week. They`re doing good and came to church again. But there`s the question of whether they need baptism or not. That`s not a decision one makes lightly, the Bishop talked with them and asked us to talk with the Mission President. We`ll see how that goes. There`s actually another person in this area who wants baptism but can`t receive it. He`s from the Middle East I guess and doesn`t have a permanent Japanese Citizenship/residence so he could be forced to go back to the Middle East at some point in time. I guess it`s too dangerous for him (If he ended up going back to the Middle East) so we`re not allowed to baptize him until he gets a citizenship or something.
Oh yeah, I found out that two people I was teaching last transfer got baptized, back in Hirakata (my last area). I`m really happy to know that they both received baptism. I`m a little disappointed that my previous companion forgot to tell me so that I could go, but nothing I can do about that. I`ll have to get him to send me pictures though.
Good luck installing the new stove, is it gas or electric? I assume electric because there isn`t a gas pipe for you to use there from what I remember.
I don`t know if you ever go on google maps or anything to look at where I am but if you do here`s where I am right now.大阪府堺市西区津久野町 3-4-27Osaka-fu Sakai-shi Nishi-ku Tsukuno-machi 3-4-27
We live about 5 minutes away from the Sakai church and 15 minutes away from the Mikunigaoka building.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
One vote (Alex): Data from STNG. Cause he's like Spock, also he can bend metal bars with his bare hands, and he plays an awesome Sherlock Holmes - on the holodeck.
Who's your favorite robot?
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Steve and Alex are currently taking the old range down the stairs right now. Hopefully the house won't be "broken in" before they are done.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Note to self: replace the black gel frosting - the dregs I have look like something scraped out of the La Brea tar pits.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
What's your poison?
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
I went to an enrichment activity last night - making cards. I just didn't have an ounce of creativity in me for them. I was totally uninspired. I sort of finished two cards in an hour and a half. Two. And they weren't that great.
I think it would be best if I forgo any attempts at creativity for the next two and a half weeks. Except for seminary.
And now we dance....
Monday, May 18, 2009
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Only 3 weeks left for seminary. 2 1/2 of those weeks will be spent on the "Revelation of St. John the Divine".
I'm a little nervous. And a little excited.
My class is definitely excited. As we work our way through the book, I've told them that we would do an illustrated version of it - and my class loves to draw. In fact, some of my students have already been calling "dibs" on certain passages. My challenge will be help them (and ME, while I'm at it) understand what the meanings behind the symbols are. Should be fun.
Friday, May 15, 2009
Yes, Steve has a camp out tonight, and Danny doesn't.
Oh well. In two weeks the stars will align for Father and Sons camp out - and not only will Steve and Danny be going - but also Alex. I'd like to try and coerce Nathan into going too...but that seems a long shot.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
This morning I thawed out a roast then put it in the crockpot with some onion slices, garlic salt and some "Better the Bouillon" (beef flavor). A little later in the morning I started some rolls - because we were having au jus sandwiches for dinner. With green beans.
About an hour or so before dinner the boys inform me that they have a barbecue for combined activity, and thus will not be home for dinner. Neither will their dad. So....I have a goodly size cooked roast, and a whole pan of rolls. Nathan and I enjoyed our au jus, but there is still 2/3 of a roast left.
Hmm....looks like "planned overs" for tomorrow.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
I don't know what it is about bucket trucks, but they are fun to watch. I'm not crazy about the new stuff that they added to the power poles - but I can tell that they aren't done yet - we'll see what tomorrow brings.
Monday, May 11, 2009
Nathan gets the RFF (Robert Frost Foundation) Poetry Award for his writing effort:
You bake bread
You wake up at 4am to teach the dead
You broke your arm
Yet you still work on the family farm
You wash our clothes
You may be the only one who really knows
How hard you work
Or how you put up with all our quirks....
...But I do know that I love you.
(And I know you love me too.)
Steve wins a small award for earliest card (he gets a big award for building the garden - and having all the boys help with it). Danny for using the computer to generate a card with lovely promises of absolute obedience...
David left me a voice-mail (from my "favorite son" - so I would know it was him), then he called later on. Stephanie and family came over twice - and brought me a lovely lilac bush - that I told her she didn't need in her yard, since they are selling their house....
Last but not least, we got to talk to Andrew.
It was a nice day.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
We were able to talk to Elder Andrew this evening (which is Mother's Day here, and Monday morning p-day in Japan). He seems to be doing great - we had him on the phone for about 40 minutes. It's tough that we won't get to talk to him until Christmas - that's quite a spell. I'm wondering if we might get an extra phone call when Alex gets his mission call...
Saturday, May 9, 2009
Where were Alex and Danny? They spent the morning helping one of my seminary students with his Eagle project. Then they came over to Stephanie's and Alex removed the old caulking from around the tub. After we got home they both mowed the yard and helped Steve with the garden. A good days work.
Friday, May 8, 2009
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Speaking of roots. My radishes are sprouting. Too bad I don't really like radishes. They may be the only thing that comes up.
Monday, May 4, 2009
And now we dance (and giggle uncontrollably).
I hope things are going well for all of you still. I`ve been transferred to Mikunigaoka. It`s still in the Osaka area. I`ve been near the center of the mission for all my time so far. I expect to be here until at least August but we`ll see.
As far as Mother`s Day calls go it`s pretty simple. You`ll call me on Sunday at 6 PM Pacific time (Probably 10 AM my time). The phone number is 080-****-**** which is a cell phone number, I don`t know how that affects things on your side.
This past week has been fairly good. The trip to Kyoto last Monday was nice. We visited the former Kyoto Imperial Palace. We went with a few English Class students and a few other missionaries. The weather was wonderful. The Palace itself was interesting and nice but the gardens there were wonderful. I probably won`t bother going back again though. It`s one of those one time things to me. On the way back we hopped our way across the river on some rocks, it was a nice place. I got some good pictures of the palace and gardens but we were the last group going through and the workers there were herding us like sheep through everything so not quite as many as I would`ve liked. :P.
On Tuesday transfer calls came and I spent most of the day packing and shipped off my luggage that evening. On Wednesday we went to some Osaka stake Undokai (Exercise Event) which was pretty good. Lots of people came thankfully and the weather was good... a little too good. Elder Bahr and Elder Murphy got a little sunburned.
On Thursday I headed off to Mikunigaoka. Once again I`m in a 4 missionary apartment. There`s really not that many in the mission I hear, but I couldn`t say for sure since this is my third 4-man apartment. They`re more interesting and fun for better or worse, and get messy really quickly if you`re not careful.
My new companion is Elder Stufflebeam. He lived in California till he was 14 and then his family moved to Utah. He goes home in July of this year. We`ve set some goals together that are going well so far. One of goals is to speak only Japanese except for a few special instances. We`ve also been getting up at 6 AM and jogging about a mile or so. We also managed to read from the Japanese Book of Mormon together for 30 minutes before personal study time a couple times so far.
The other Elders in my apartment are pretty good too. Elder Kunihiro (Japanese) and Elder Obata (From Brazil). Elder Obata studied some English back in Brazil but couldn`t really speak at all but his English is pretty much fluent now. He`s learned it pretty well on his mission, well enough to teach English Class. He also speaks really good Japanese as well. Anyways they`re a couple of good missionaries. Elder Kunihiro is a really good cook, I think he used to work at an Italian/Western restaurant of something.
The ward here, as always, is really good I think. The ward mission leader just got back from his mission a month or two ago so he`s been pretty helpful.
Thanks for sending the letters and emails I appreciate them. Yes my Visa card was in the package. I was wondering if you had activated it or not, it`s good to know that you have. I was able to open the picture of your new garden and it looks really nice. Way to go. :)
Things are going well here and should only continue to get better. I guess that`s it till next week.
Saturday, May 2, 2009
Who would you pick? Bring it on.
The wheat grew very tall and ripened into golden grain. 'Who will help me reap my wheat?' asked the little red hen. 'Not I,' said the duck.. 'Out of my classification,' said the pig. 'I'd lose my seniority,' said the cow. 'I'd lose my unemployment compensation,' said the goose. 'Then I will do it by myself,' said the little red hen, and so she did.
At last it came time to bake the bread. 'Who will help me bake the bread?' asked the little red hen. 'That would be overtime for me,' said the cow. 'I'd lose my welfare benefits,' said the duck. 'I'm a dropout and never learned how,' said the pig. 'If I'm to be the only helper, that's discrimination,' said the goose. 'Then I will do it by myself,' said the little red hen.
She baked five loaves and held them up for all of her neighbors to see. They wanted some and, in fact, demanded a share. But the little red hen said, 'No, I shall eat all five loaves.' 'Excess profits!' cried the cow. 'Capitalist leech!' screamed the duck. 'I demand equal rights!' yelled the goose. The pig just grunted in disdain.And they all painted 'Unfair!' picket signs and marched around and around the little red hen, shouting obscenities.
Then the farmer came. He said to the little red hen, "You must not be so greedy, Let's re-distribute the wealth!" 'But I earned the bread,' said the little red hen. 'Exactly,' said the farmer. 'That is what makes our free enterprise system so wonderful. Anyone in the barnyard can earn as much as he wants. But under our modern government regulations, the productive workers must divide the fruits of their labor with those who are lazy and idle.'
And they all lived happily ever after, including the little red hen, who smiled and clucked, 'I am grateful, for now I truly understand.' But her neighbors became quite disappointed in her. She never again baked bread because she joined the party and got her bread free. And all the party smiled. 'Fairness' had been established. Individual initiative had died, but nobody noticed; perhaps no one cared...so long as there was free bread that others were paying for."
(I would credit this if I could - but unfortunately I don't know who wrote it - I do know it wasn't me)