Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Ashton's 1st Grade Field Trip

Ashton's turn to visit a local Misawa elementary school.

The goal was to have a cultural exchange and have fun building relationships through
teaching the American kids some traditional Japanese games.

Ashton and his best friend Donicus

Changing into our indoor shoes.

We were welcomed to the school and each of the kids were given a buddy.
Our kids don't speak Japanese and they didn't speak English. It is amazing to me that even though kids can't communicate through words they still have a good time together and it all worked amazingly!

Jump Rope

The Japanese kids were fantastic jumpers!

Daruma Drop

Spinning Tops

Goal is to have your top out last everyone else.


Roughly translated as lucky laugh. It is a game played during the New Years's celebration.  It's a lot like the game,  pin the tail on the donkey.  You place all the parts of a face on the head and when you take off the blindfold you see the crazy face you created.
It was so fun watching these American boys get blindfolded, not knowing what was going on or what they should do.  But they quickly got the idea and had a ton of fun playing this game.
Imagine just meeting someone that you can't understand and they start to blindfold you...I think I would have put my arms in an X (which means no in Japan).  I'm just kidding, I would have loved to play all these games with the kids.

Origami Sumo Wrestling

You take turns competing against each other and have your sumo outlast all the rest.


Making a box

Cup and Ball

Ashton and his buddy

Love spending time with this cute little guy.
Every time there is a field trip to a Japanese school, I will be signing up!

~ December 3, 2015 ~

Wild Horses and a Light house

The day after Thanksgiving we took a road trip along the cost to the north part of Japan.

Cape Shiriya and the wild horses

It was so cold and very windy, there was a storm coming. However, it was really fun to explore and try to find the horses.  In good weather they roam freely all around this light house.  We didn't find them until we were leaving.

The shore was completely covered in trash!

There is a shrine on the top of that rock...We wondered why.

 Here were the horses...
they don't look so wild being fed hay in a fenced area;)

Rokkasho Rest stop

We all agreed that this is probably the best rest stop we have ever seen.
Everyone had so much fun running the obstacle course.

~ November 27, 2015 ~

Thanksgiving Day

Our own little Thanksgiving dinner all the way in Japan.
Being in another country made it tough to really feel like Thanksgiving, but we tried our best.

I love to cook Thanksgiving dinner, and I'm glad I have big enough kids to eat it.
We loved spending the day all together relaxing and enjoying each other.
Especially because it was a windy, rainy day and we were stuck inside.

 After dinner relaxing begins...

Waiting for the new couch takes patience. 
Our family room furniture for 4 months was 3 reclining yard chairs 

 Elka at 4 months old

~ November 26, 2015 ~

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Ethan's 5th Grade Field Trip

In Aomori Japan to visit a Japanese elementary school

Entering the school:

We had a very warm welcome.
The Japanese students were outside and looking through windows,
greeting us with energetic waves hello.

When you enter a Japanese school you take your outside shoes off and put on your inside shoes.  We then headed to the gym to have the kids find their buddy for the day.  After pairing off and splitting into smaller groups they took us to a class room for the first project.

Origami lesson

They were making a kind of goldfish that the Japanese use as a decoration for one of their celebrations.

Ethan and his buddy.

Calligraphy Lesson

Notice that even though you have changed your shoes to clean indoor shoes.  They still have you take those shoes off to go onto mats.  They are a very clean and respectful people.

Balloon game

After game time ended the kids went back up stairs to the class rooms to have a Japanese style school lunch.  The Japanese students always eat in their class rooms with their teachers.  They serve each other and clean up their class room when they are finished.  The American and other Japanese adult volunteers went to eat lunch in the library.  The Japanese PTO served us our lunch.  We were given the same lunch as the kids, with the exception of the dessert.  We got one and the kids didn't.  It was all very delicious and very healthy.

Bowl of Rice. I added a yummy seasoning that they offered.
Miso soup with Japanese potatoes and carrots (yes, they are different than American)
Bowl of pork, bamboo, and what looked like green beans (I think;)
Milk(not pictured)
Cookie/cake (not sure what is was, but it was very good)

(sorry can't get this picture to turn correctly)

One of my all time favorite field trips!

~ November 25, 2015 ~