Playing Catch Up

Technology sucks. Seriously. I have been trying to sign in for a week now to write posts but WordPress wouldn’t work on any of my devices. After deleting all cookies and cache and rebooting my router 20 million times, I am finally able to log in and write. I have a bit to catch y’all up on.

First of all my classes are going great. The kids are doing great! This week two of the classes made spiders. I have the directions for that craft listed here. They really did awesome with making them. The second class was really creative and made spider webs out of cotton balls.

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The third class finished their letters to Arizona. They will be going in the mail this week with candy for the kids. To make things easier for the kids I wrote sentences out on posters with options for them finish the sentences.

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On Tuesday, Junko gave me a bag of limes. I was really excited to get them because limes are really expensive at the commissary. I decided to try and make Key Lime Pie for the first time. It turned out great! So I made a second pie for Junko. Don’t laugh but to pipe the whipped cream onto the pie, I cut up the nipple of one of Katniss’ bottles to make a frosting tip. It wasn’t the prettiest tip but it did the job.

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Earlier this week, Jeremy and I bought bikes. With the cooler weather we want to start biking through Iwakuni to see if we can see more of the town and experience Japan a bit better than we are by driving through town.

My bike
My bike
Jeremy's bike
Jeremy’s bike

On Friday, Jeremy and I went out on a date. We wondered the alleyways of Yellow Brick Road again until we found some place interesting. Unfortunately I don’t know the name of the restaurant but it is across the courtyard from a restaurant called G Labo Noodle. The restaurant was fun. There was no menu. We had to stumble through broken English and Japanese to find out it is a hot pot restaurant. They have one flavor per night. That night it was cow stomach (I have had this before and I loved it). The restaurant brought out a pot with the cow stomach, tofu, veggies and broth and set it on a burner on the table. We had to let it boil for 10 minutes before we could serve it. While waiting for it to cook, we munched on boiled peanuts. Once we finished what was in the pot, they asked us if we wanted a round of noodles or rice next. We chose noodles. They brought out a plate of ramen noodles and put it in the remaining broth. The meal was delicious. It was a bit expensive compared to our normal eating out costs. It was 4900 yen ($40) but to be honest, for a nice dinner and date, it wasn’t too bad.

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Also on Friday we found out that our COLA (Cost Of Living Allowance) was going up 70%. That means we would be making over $800 a month just in COLA. We both agree that we are just putting that back into savings. We have learned to live of the lower COLA amount. With the new COLA we can easily set up a savings for when we go back to the States. We are still uncertain what is going to happen when we leave here since Jeremy’s contract with the Marines will be ending that same year.

On Saturday we went back to Vital Yaard with Marcus and Charrleen. Charrleen and I decided we would try out some of the drinks. The drink menu had different colored lion heads by each drink (red, yellow, and green). After two drinks we realized green meant very little alcohol. Yellow meant moderate alcohol. Red meant heavy alcohol. Both of my drinks (Margarita and Kamekaze) were red lion heads. Charrleen picked out two yellow lion heads (Blue Motorcycle and Mai Tai).

Margarita
Margarita
Kamekaze
Kamekaze
Blue Motorcycle
Blue Motorcycle
Mai Tai
Mai Tai

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Jeremy and his stawberry smoothie
Jeremy and his stawberry smoothie

Today I spent the day cleaning the apartment. It probably wouldn’t have taken as long as it did if Katniss wasn’t so clingy. I spent most of the afternoon with her perched on my shoulder.

Please excuse my appearance. I don't dress up to clean.
Please excuse my appearance. I don’t dress up to clean.

I also made sugar cookies for the kids to decorate tomorrow evening. I also made homemade powdered sugar to make homemade royal icing. I’m excited to see the kids decorate the cookies. According to Junko, kids in Japan don’t often get a chance to do this.

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