A Hello Kitty Fan

Came across this small Hello Kitty Fan. As it is small, it fits perfectly on a desk. 

Perfect thing to own considering how hot it's over here!

Things I like about Japan: Lipton Milk Tea

I've decided to occasionally write my likes and dislikes about living in Japan.

I'm not a fan of Lipton tea, with one huge exception. I absolutely love the pre-made milk tea that they sell in cartoons in Japan. It's rich, fatty, perfectly floral with a slight edge of coconut. It's one of the most decadent beverages I've ever had without ice cream in it. It's a perfect blend and not too sweet. I'm certain that whatever tea that is sold in cartons back home is not going to capture the taste of this Japanese blend.

7 Weeks: Welcome to the hormonal rollercoaster!

Haven't really done this when I was pregnant with Noah, so, I've decided to try this this time around :)

  • Still with the growing. Always with the growing. Baby starts off this week at four or five millimeters long, but is a whopping half an inch by the end.
  • Has a two-chambered heart, air passages in the lungs, and cerebral hemispheres in the braaaaaains.
  • Has an appendix, which is kind of cool until I remember that the appendix is almost completely useless. But it’s there now! Awww.
  • Feeling a little urpy and gaggy and pukey.
  • Are incredibly sensitive to smells.
  • Like, seriously. Who burned an English muffin in the employee break room this morning? WHO? WHO IS RESPONSIBLE? I WILL HUNT YOU DOWN, YOU MUFFIN-BURNING BASTARD.

Your baby is really beginning to develop more physical definition this week – their oversized head isn’t just large and oblong anymore, it’s actually a little bit pointy. The tiny receding tail bud is now starting to be overshadowed by the growth of their legs, which are now complete with knees and the beginnings of toes. Their eyes and ears are the most visible features on their head and their miniature bones are starting to harden throughout their body. You also have some variation on a boy or a girl at this point, although their genitals won’t be visible enough to determine which color cigars you’re going to buy until around the 16th week.

 I’ll be including a couple things each week comparing my first and second pregnancy. "Oh Yeah, THIS" will be the stuff I went through the first time but repressed forgot about, and "New This Time Around" will cover all the stuff that makes my current pregnancy a unique and special little snowflake.

Oh Yeah, THIS:
So l get these weird little red bumps on my skin when I’m pregnant. They aren’t zits or a rash or anything — they actually look like tiny red moles. Raised. About the size of the head of a pin. Last time I got a couple on my hands and arms and thighs and immediately hauled ass to the dermatologist when my OB couldn’t explain them. She identified them as a passing hormonal thing and assured me they would go away once I gave birth. I was skeptical, since I am (ahem) a fairly moley person to begin with and they sure did look like something I was gonna be stuck with and argh! Why are there SO MANY of them? Sure enough, they vanished almost immediately after Noah was born. I remember cutting off my hospital bracelets at home and noticing that the spots on my hand were completely gone.

Well, the spots are back again, only this time they’re all over my stomach. Over a dozen at last count. Ah, pregnancy. You are just so damn WEIRD.

New This Time Around:
Actually, there's nothing new this time around.

Fashion Subculture Handbook

As the title implies this is the 'ultimate' handbook that describes the different fashion seen here in Japan. There are such fashion features like the ideal boyfriend for each trend or the Gal quiz. You can even take it now (click last picture). Then there is the absolute absurdity that is "day in the life." It's certainly an interesting thing to see!


Why, Summer. . .

It's here......


The humidity is just starting to kick in.....

....which means air conditioners starting up.....

A building weighed down with air conditioners.

....towels being plonked on heads....

....or simply slung over the whole body....

 Little Red Riding Hood floored by the Japanese summer.

....and ginger drying on the bonnets of cars.....

 Yay for summer...not

Sure, why not?

Smart and Trendy Moms

Thanks for stopping by :)

Sickenly Pink


Lexi Bee - The Pinkielicious Shop has definitely filled Etsy's pink requirements. So if a pink quota had to be met to be eligible for benefits from the Etsy state..  Its the most indulgent shop I've seen. Skirts of Little Mermaid print, and My Little Pony to adorn absolutely everything! Pink sparkle lovingly overloaded in every background!

It's Cute

Waiting for Kiyoshi at the bus stop

Geeze it's really been hot here in Chiba lately. Noah and I strolled down to the bench in front of where the tennis courts are and waited for Kiyoshi 's bus to come. It's a bright sunny day over here but it's humid and hot. We were melting actually! I tried to keep Noah under the shade as best as I could but it was still so hot!

By the way, when Noah sits at the bus stop waiting for his older half-brother Kiyoshi, whom he absolutely adores to come home. The second he sees Kiyoshi exit the school bus, he starts clapping for him! And smiling ear to ear!

Ringworm while pregnant

I'm laying in bed on my belly while I type this because my back is covered in salt.

The reason that I went to the doctor two days ago is that I have tinea corporis-- roughly translated to mean "fungus butt" more commonly known as "ringworm." Kiyoshi is taking swimming lessons, and so I'm blaming the swimming school for this predicament. Once I realized that I had ringworm, I checked the collective wisdom of the internet to see if I can take over-the-counter anti-fungal medicine while pregnant. Turns out that the answer is "no." I waited a few days, hoping that a couple of spots of ringworm would be no big deal, but it started to spread and I got REALLY itchy.

I thought that my doctor might be able to help, so I made an appointment. Surely she knows of some not-over-the-counter medicine that pregnant ladies can take, right? Nope. I'm glad that I went to the doctor that day anyway, because I started spotting while I was there and she gave me the necessary paperwork to get my hormone levels tested, BUT I got no relief for the ringworm.

At home after the doctor's office, I did another search on the internet and found that you can put sea salt on your ringworm spots to dry them out. Home remedy. Figuring that salt on your skin can't be THAT bad if you're pregnant, I called my soon-to-be OBGYN to confirm. I was told that it should be okay, just to discontinue it if I have any reactions on my skin.

So my dear, sweet husband has been making sea salt and water pastes and spreading them all over my back, stomach, and legs for the past three nights. We let the salt sit on my skin for 40 minutes before wiping it off. It seems to be helping. I'm not itchy anymore, at least. And some of the spots appear to be going away. Yay!

First morning sickness, first dream about being pregnant

Yesterday was a day of firsts. I had my first real morning sickness, starting right when I woke up. I've felt queezy a few times since I found out that I was pregnant, but I didn't actually think I would throw up. I was dry heaving yesterday. I didn't ever puke, but I thought for sure that I would. You know how right before you throw up, sometimes your mouth fills with spit and your eyes get all watery? It was like that. I felt sick, in varying intensities, pretty much all day. It wasn't until about 8 p.m. that I really got an appetite. I was suddenly very hungry. And that was the most delicious can of vegetable soup I've ever tasted.

Then, last night I had my first dream about being pregnant. In my dream, I woke up and I undressed, intending to get ready for work. I looked down at my breasts and noticed that one of my nipples was HUGE. It was massive, and it felt all spongy and rubbery. I thought to myself, "But this is so early! It's only going to get bigger. How will the baby ever fit it's little mouth around that?"

Anime: Kaze no Yojimbo

Kaze no Yojimbo is one of the first Seinen anime series I have ever watched. Thinking back, it might be one of the titles which converted me into a fan of the seinen genre.

By Studio Pierrot
Genre: Action, Adventure, Mystery Seinen
Aired: 2001

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Kaze no Yojimbo (trans. Bodyguard of the Wind) is a 2001/2002 Japanese animated television series based on Akira Kurosawa's chanbara film Yojimbo.

The series follows George Kodama into the small town of Kimujuku. The wanderer quickly realizes he is an unwelcomed visitor and becomes caught up in a violent conflict between rival crime syndicates.

Jyouji "George" Kodama arrives in the town of Kimujuku in search of a man named Genzo Araki. Unable to find him, he learns that the town is divided in two distinct factions. Sensing that Kimujuku's residents are hiding something, Jyouji takes work from each faction, playing them against each other in an effort to uncover the secret and the whereabouts of Genzo.
The town's secrets and mysterious characters triggers audience's curiosity and speculation. George himself and his circumstances is an enigma. His true identity and motivation for finding Genzo Araki is unclear. The series continues to keep viewers at bay as each episode builds up mysteries and peels them bit by bit. Not only that the plot entertains, but stimulate the brain (at least mine).

Kaze no Yojimbo's art and animation is simple and nothing out of the ordinary. The colors are quite somber and faded. It creates and maintains a depressin bland nothing much, but they are not boring to watch at all. In contrast, their personalities are well developed and complex. Even though the animation may not be satisfactory, but it can be overlooked because of its quality plot.

Must watch!

Yesterday at the Doctor's Office

So, before I tell you about the last 6 and 1/2 weeks, let me tell you what happened yesterday.

After I was done seeing the doctor, I decided to use the bathroom before heading back to work. There was blood. I've had some occasional spotting but this seemed like more than usual. I went and told the nurse, who had me wait to see the doctor again. The doctor told me (as she has before) that there's a 30% chance of miscarriage and that there's almost nothing that can be done to stop a miscarriage in the 1st trimester. She also said that some bleeding in the beginning isn't that uncommon. The doctor told me to go get my blood taken the next day (today) so that we can see if my hormone levels look okay. Then I'll need to get them rechecked in a week.

I got my blood drawn this morning and got the results back this afternoon. The number looks good (43,876) but without a number to compare it to, there's no way to know for sure if everything is okay. Once I get my blood drawn next week and we see if the number is going up or down, we can figure out if the blood yesterday was a bad sign or no big deal.

Keep your fingers crossed!!!

6 Weeks and 3 Days

There's nausea everywhere!

This is going to be a busy week for your amazing little embryo. Their brain is still growing remarkably fast; miniature hand plates are starting to develop and the early formations of what will be their fingers are already visible. Also, the lower limbs do not develop quite as fast, so they’re pretty much still flippers. Up until this point, your baby has been very curled up with the head and tail in close proximity, but this week their trunk and neck are beginning to grow and straighten as their tail recedes into its resting position in the back. Even though your little miracle is only 6 weeks old, they’re already capable of demonstrating reflex responses to touch!

Introductions of sorts!

Name's Kelly, twenty-six, born and raised in Northern California. I've married the love of my life in September 2008. In August 2009 I gave birth to a beautiful boy, Noah my first and hubby's second child. He was previously married and from that marriage he had a son, Kiyoshi. Hubby's originally from Osaka, Japan.  He works for an airline. We live in Chiba, Japan. Where we just built our dream home, an import "all American" house! Which means a big GE oven, big GE dishwasher and yes, central heating and central air conditioning, yay! In mid-June of this year I found out I was pregnant once again! So I'm now: the wife of a pilot, mother to Kiyoshi - 5 years, Noah - 11 months and currently, as of this date, 6 weeks and 2 days pregnant.

This is my life and I love it!
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