New Name

We have a new name for this blog space! Over the course of time, this site has become more about discovering life as an expat mom raising kids on the field and balancing ministry life in another language and culture.

So, instead of the very generic title we used to have, I’ve made it more personal– with my name.

Some of ya’ll are giving me funny looks.

Actually, it’s how I introduce myself in Japanese. People tend to have trouble remembering my name, but I’ve discovered an easy trick to get them to remember.

“Hi, I’m Janine. Ja-neen. It’s Ninja, just opposite: Nin-ja… Ja-nin.”

“OOOOoooh, that’s so easy to remember. I won’t forget now. Ms. Ninja-Janine.”

Works everytime.

Very few people get my name’s pronunciation correct in America on the first try, yet here I’ve found a niche.

While I’m not a professional ninja (just yet), I feel like I’ve learned many new skill sets and tricks in my 7 years (well, 9 total) living in Japan. My obento-making skills are making headway, my tricks at home organization have gone up a few notches since we moved into our less-than-700 sq ft. apartment and added 2 more tiny humans, hand-me-downs and a home office to the mix. And last week– I rode home from the grocery store with a week’s worth of food, a kid and- literally– a broom…. all on my bicycle.

The ninja skill-set of a mom.

But seriously, it’s a bit ironic– my name backward helps people remember it. And in many ways, I– and my whole family– have had to undergo many transformations…. many “growth periods” and “growing pains” over the years. Things aren’t as straight-forward as they seem.

And to live in an Eastern culture, among people whose worldview is completely different than my own, to learn their ways of doing things, I need to not be as logical as my Western-born mind expects I should. Even to speak their language, I ought rather to start at the end of my sentences and work my way backward.

So I thought a new name was appropriate. I’ll still write about the same things. I’ll keep you posted on if we survive first grade… or at this point, summer vacation (our school year goes from April to March, so we’re still in the middle of our school year). We’ll continue with “glimpses” and snippets into our world here in Japan and things we learn in the course of digging into culture and ministry.

But for now, I’m signing off as:


The Next American Ninja Warrior Mom….


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