Tonight my daughter came home with homework of fill-in-the-blank words, where they give you a picture and maybe a “letter” (or in our case, a syllable) or two as a hint. These assignments are new as she’s starting to advance in learning her hiragana. Some words I’ve just typed into the dictionary, and together we… Continue reading All the Things I Still Don’t Know
Over the last few weeks, I’ve met some foreign parents of first graders. If I could choose an emoji for them, it would be this one: 😱😱😱😱😱😱😱😱😱😱😱😱 Because that is exactly the look they each gave me as we opened those conversations. Even another Japanese mom told me, “it’s just so much to keep up… Continue reading Coded Communication
Every March, we get our Trash magazine in the mail. It’s actually pretty useful and I keep mine on the side of our refrigerator for reference. This trash magazine shows us how and when, over the course of the next year, to dispose of our garbage and recyclables, and which category various types of items… Continue reading Trash Talk
There’s a special pink-zippered bag among my daughter’s school belongings that I’ve discovered is the most important item. They call it the Renraku-bukuro (contact/communication bag). But I call it “The Daily Dispatches” and approach it with a “Sir! Yes Sir!” attitude. My daughter is the messenger, carrying all-important paperwork, notices and messages from the teacher… Continue reading Daily Dispatches
First Day Frenzy
Yesterday we got an email from a fellow worker here in Japan regarding our ministry. It began like this: “Sorry it has taken me a few days to respond… Things have been crazy this week with school starting back up for the kids and especially figuring everything out about my son’s new school as he… Continue reading First Day Frenzy
So the day I’ve been preparing for for months finally arrived– The Nyuugaku-shiki or Entrance Ceremony for first graders beginning elementary school. The gymnasium was lined with thick red-and-white-striped material on the walls, flowers across the front, and a wide, high desk on the stage. Chairs were social-distance spaced, and overall, a guarded silence pervaded… Continue reading Nyuugaku
It wasn’t on the list!
The last few weeks have been incredibly busy while preparing for a new season for my daughter. I’ve made a number of bags and lunch mats to size, using tutorials I’ve found online in Japanese for lesson bags, shoe bags, gym clothes bags, school lunch bag (different than obento bags we made for preschool!)… lunch… Continue reading It wasn’t on the list!
Yesterday, I attended the school play for my middle daughter. My husband attended our eldest daughter’s performance and they rushed home after a flurry of frenzied texts about the delay in the dismissal of the previous session. Dad and I made a mad dash of a switch as he hopped off, I hopped on and… Continue reading Slouching Efforts
Things my kids say in America
So, the one benefit of living in another language is that sometimes we can still talk about whatever we want that we wouldn’t normally say in public. Sure, everyone has studied English and they listen into our conversations to see if they can understand. But, it’s also a benefit because… you know that really awkward… Continue reading Things my kids say in America
Re-entry Events– Shopping
“WOW! This store sells EVERYTHING!” I smiled as my daughter experienced that joy of entering Target for her first conscious time. Yes, honey. Yes, it does. That glorious feeling of entering a store, located on one enormous floor where you can purchase socks, noodles and dish soap and even appliances all in one stop. It’s… Continue reading Re-entry Events– Shopping