Once Upon a Tanbo

Archive for April 2008

Hello all..

Well its finally the first vacation day of this years Golden Week Holiday!
Even though its a random Tuesday it was so nice to be able to sleep in an extra hour, do some laundry, and then take a go on my workout bike.

The weekend was a lot of fun!! The picnic was so much fun on Sunday! We had a total of 5 different “families” (some dads didn’t show up). We met up at Shukugawa Park and after getting lost (me) we all met up and ended up picnic-ing near a playground. Since there were two toddlers, Ryohei seemed to assume the role of the days babysitter. I think he spent more time chasing them around the park than he did actually sitting and talking.

As for me, I sat and chatted and had a great time with all the delicious food that people made from Lavash bread roles, to chocolate banana bread, to daikon fry with pork to an all out veggie platter!! Yum!!

I would just say that even though Ryohei and I don’t have kids, we were exhausted afterwards.. it really is a lot of work. But now he keeps looking at the picture on my facebook saying ohh kawaii… hoshii… sometimes I think he’s worse than I am.
But honestly it was a great great time. And we have tentative plans for a BBQ sometime within the next couple of months!!

BTW – I think the pigeons deserted their egg… the mama pigeon hasn’t been back for a few days now. So I think the crows must have scared them off. I’m kinda sad as both Ryohei and I were looking forward to seeing if the egg would actually hatch.

So I don’t have a lot of plans for this Golden Week, but Lulu will be coming and staying Friday night through Monday morning! We will be going to Nara together yay! I’ve been to Nara a couple times but mostly to visit a friend who lives there so I haven’t really ever been to the temples and parks so I’m really looking forward to it!! Most of all, looking forward to seeing Lulu before she leaves for Australia!

By the way, Ryohei’s (main) test is in 5 weeks!! He’s currently taking the first of 5 practice tests that we plan to do every Tuesday until the week of his test. Strangely I’m feeling very zen about the whole thing. As much as I hope/pray/wish he can get a job this year, I don’t think him taking an extra year would be the end of the world.. (maybe the fact that we plan to go to America for 8 months in between then is helping as well 😉 )

Sorry for the boring post!! Oh I’ll post the 1 picture I took from the picnic!!


Today is a beautiful Saturday!!
So far its been a nice relaxing day. Got up around 7ish, watched some CSI, did my exercise bike for 25 mins (a new record!), and made brownies!!!! I brought some mixes and a brownie pan back from my trip to America but I wasn’t sure how well it would go in my convection oven, but I was able to make delicious brownies on the first go!! I only brought back 3 mixes so I was praying not to have one be wasted.

Now my apartment smells like warm gooey chocolate and its making me so happy!
Ryohei and I had one each, but we are going to try to ration them out for the next couple days (doubt that will work very well though)

Also! In other news, we have a guest! We discovered that a pigeon made a nest with 1 egg on our balcony! We noticed it at the beginning of the week and she has been there warming the egg everyday since. Ryohei and I have been trying to be careful when we hang laundry out as to not scare her as one time when I was hanging out towels, she flew off and scared the crap out of me!

I wonder if the egg will hatch and we’ll get to see her with the baby.

Tomorrow is the picnic, I’ve been looking forward to it for a while now!! Ryohei doesn’t usually hang out with me and my friends so I’m excited to show him off! Hehe! Hopefully we’ll take some nice pics with everyone!!

good luck?

Posted on: April 22, 2008

The saga continues…

So after the “defeat” of the weekends the house of Kobayashi has been very quiet. I still can’t get the miserable look Ryohei had after grading his tests out of my head, so I’m trying to think of various ways to help him without being too pushy.

We decided that I am going to “procter” practice tests for him, specifically targeting his main goal (Court Employee) for the next 5 weeks. The first one will be next Tuesday which will culminate in the celebration of our 18 month anniversary (yay!) He’s also decided on an “early to rise” plan which may in fact kill me. I’m not if this comes across in my blog, but I highly enjoy and need my sleep. Being woken up an hour earlier than usual by computer clicking and cupboards banging, was not very fun for me this morning. I was pretty crabby too so there were some… ahem, words exchanged, but no real lasting damage.

I’m not sure if I mentioned this before, but the day after we got married, Ryohei’s computer mysteriously stopped working. It would start-up but the screen was completely busted with all these colorful bars spread about it. About 2 weeks ago, he brought it up to Osaka to get analyzed and they told him it was a busted mother board and would cost us about 60000 yen. Not something we have… so he had it send to the make to get checked and apparently the Yodobashi guy was chotto baka because the make fixed whatever was wrong and sent it back for free, even though the computer is WAY out of warrenty! So that’s good news!! To be honest, both of use the internet a lot so sharing one computer between us the last 2 months has been a bit of a challenge. I’m really really looking forward to him going to pick it up so that he doesn’t have to use mine anymore.

As for me, nothing much. I’m really looking forward to this weekend as I’ll be going to a picnic with the group of girls that I met up with last month and their families! We had such a great time last month so I hope this time will be just as fun! This time there will be 5 of us and a few husbands coming along as well! I’ll make sure and write about it later! I’ve been working hard on my exercize bike. I’m up to about 20 mins in one go! I definitely can feel it working! I’m not sure how much weight I’ve lost, but at least a little, and my stamina is getting better as well!! Ryohei keeps complimenting me and is impressed with my peddling skills! (hehe)

He can be so sweet sometimes! He got home before me yesterday and when I got back he was like “You’ve gotten so cute lately!” and gave me a big hug. He can be a baby sometimes, but he’s definitely a sweetie as well. It’s a side I’ve never seen him use with anyone but me! Anyways, I figure I’ll leave this post off on a good note!
Signing off!

Ryohei had another practice test today which he didn’t do well on.
He seemed pretty confidant when he got out of it, but after marking his score he still wasn’t close to the 60% pass mark.

The test that he is mostly aiming for is about June 1st and then every following Sunday in June.

I wonder if this is not going to happen for him this year.
The fricken test is so hard, and then after that there is apparently the interview from hell. All in all theres only a 6% pass rate.

I don’t want Ryohei to have to go back to work for another soul sucking Japanese company, and he doesn’t want to work in America due to the fact that he couldn’t get a decent job with his skills and English.

I’m being supportive on the outside and I definitely can’t tell him how concerned I am on the inside.


Lulu from Cherry Blossom Adventures tagged me for this 8 random things about you meme. I am horrible at these things so forgive me!!
Here are the rules:
1. Each player starts with 8 random facts/habits about themselves.
2. People who are tagged, write a blog post about their own 8 random things, and post these rules.
3. At the end of your post you need to tag 8 people and include their names.
4. Don’t forget to leave them a comment on their blog and tell them they’ve been tagged, and to come back and read your blog for the whole story.

8 Random Things About Me
1. I am very particular about my sleeping arrangements, I am someone who needs to have perfect darkness to sleep, its very hard for me to sleep with any sort of light on. This has been a problem since I am also a scaredy cat and when I used to live alone I would sometimes keep the light up and be terribly cranky at work the next day. Now the weird thing is, its very hard for me to sleep in perfect quiet. I need a fan or some sort of white noise, this may be due to the fact that I had a ceiling fan in my bedroom since age 10 and slept with it on almost every day from then until I graduated high school. Now I need some sort of undulating noise to lull me to sleep… surprisingly, gentle snoring works too, but Ryohei doesn’t snore, so he gets to put up with the fan instead heh heh heh.

2. I started learning Japanese formally as a University student at age 18, but I had some exposure to the language back when I was in Jr. High school, one of my best friends since I was 11 was a Japanese-American girl whose family owned a Japanese restaurant. I used to spend so much time with her that I practically lived at their house and worked at their restaurant. Her parents didn’t speak very much English so I was exposed to a lot of Japanese language at that time passively and even picked up a few words like “genki” and “3ji” (3 o’clock, which is when she would always tell her parents to pick us up from the mall), her parents also taught me words like “ijiwaru” (meany) and how to count to 10. At this point I consider myself, for the most part, a fluent Japanese speaker, I wonder if this experience was helpful to me in my future language studies.

3. This is a bit embarrassing, but I was a HUGE fan of My Little Pony which came out in the 80s. I loved them from probably about ages 3-13. I have a stash of over 200 that I still can’t bear to part with, I’m hoping that one day I’ll have a little girl who can get as much fun and use out of them as I did. My fandom extended far beyond the actual dolls, by the way, I had bed sheets, lunch boxes, video tapes that I taped and watched over and over again of the cartoons. My best friends in 3rd -6th grade also had a collection that rivaled mine and we would play for HOURS making up crazy stories and adventures. It’s a very good, if not slight embarrassing memory… if only for the fact that I only gave up playing them when I was still in Junior High School.

4. When I was little I used to be a really picky eater, I absolutely hated anything that was not “American” food. Thankfully I got over that about the time I entered high school and some of my favorite cuisines consist of Thai, Middle Eastern, Mexican, Indian, and Greek food. Yum!

5. I was a cheerleader for three years in high school. I think this is something that surprises a lot of people because I don’t seem like the type. I am lot more introverted then the stereotypical cheerleader image, I also didn’t really fit in with most of the girls on the team, but I dealt with it and still managed to have a lot of fun. We did competitions at several famous California theme parks and cheered at our teams football and basketball competitions. To be honest I have little to no coordination so I was a really really bad cheerleader. But, its a good memory from high school so I don’t regret it!

6. I’ve always had a very exact plan for my life, which I’ve been able to stick to with out a lot of glitches. I decided that I would go on JET after meeting my friend Alison while she was on JET in 1999. Seven years later I was on the plane myself, interestingly enough, I think it may have been my fate to stay here, since try as I might I couldn’t picture what I would be doing after I came home from Japan. Now, that’s not really an issue anymore, and I have a good idea of what I’ll be doing after I’m done with my current job.

7. I love cats! My parents had a kitty named Poopsqueak when I was born and through out my childhood we’ve had quite a few. Ginger, Pepper, Smoky, and finally Misty who is still alive. I bought her for my mom for Mothers day almost 13 years ago. She’s still fairly lively for her age. I’ve FINALLY gotten Ryohei hooked on the idea of wanting a cat, he had wanted to get a dog, so maybe in a year or two we will be getting our own kitty! Yay!

8. A lot of you may read my journal and think, I am broody beyond belief. Sadly, that may be true, however its not really a new development since I’ve wanted to have my own children since I was a kid myself. I’ve found lists of baby names from when I was about 8 and drawings I made of clothes for my future children. Ryohei and I have talked about it at length, and at this point we are just waiting for him to secure a job and then we will in all likelihood, start trying to conceive. The fact that this might happen in a year or so from now is very exciting since I know that he will be such a great dad. He’s pretty much the same way, we were discussing numbers and names by about the 2nd week we were dating. I feel a little silly for talking about it on here so much, but its very important to me, and I’m really looking forward to someday being a mother.

Ok!! Well that’s about it for today!! Lets see… I’m going to tag
Ana, Christelle, India, Trish, Gina, Midori, and Jess – yes I see that’s only 7… opps! Oh well!

Ok… I know I have to post something, anything, so you all don’t think I’ve gone and gotten lost in the ‘Sea of Japan.’ Hahaa.. very punny Sarah.

Anyways, last week was CRAZY! I was so busy, I think I only had one proper night at home to relax after work. And I feel stressed and tired very easily, so when I woke up this morning feeling ill, I decided that instead of pushing myself and going to work it would be better just to take a sick day and just keep myself hydrated and relaxed for one day.

This week should be better, the only really appointment I have is with my friend Ana tomorrow night in Umeda. We’ve been good friends for over a year now and she’s going back to America to start a new life in Seattle from this Friday, so this will probably be the last time we see each other for a while. We have a hamburger joint, that we’ve gone to many many times since we became friends, actually we went there the first day we ever met, so we’ll be going there for a Last Supper of sorts.

Ryohei also has a friend from highschool coming to stay with us this weekend, lately I think he’s been depressed because he doesn’t have any of his friends close by, and the only one he really talks to is me, gasp, so he needs his male bonding. lol

Of course we only have a one room apartment which means that I won’t be able to escape from it! Ack. Well, I haven’t met this friend yet, but I’ve liked most of his friends so I don’t think that it should be a problem.

So, thats about it I guess! Not too exciting since last week I was so busy, but not with anything that would make great writing material.

I love my stationary bike by the way!! I still have to force myself to get on, but when I do I will go to the end of the course and I almost enjoy the hot red sweaty person I become. Anyways I am up to 15mins a go! Thank goodness… being wiped after 10 was just embarrasing, considering how athletic I used to be. Anyways my goal for next week is to be able to make it up to 20mins!

Posting in the morning before I head to work so forgive the “blurb” style post

Things that have happened in the last week!

– Got my exercise bike last Friday!! I’m really enjoy it!! I’ve been trying to use it everyday (doing an ok job so far) However I’ve grossly overestimated how in shape I am. I am dying after just 10 minutes. Its so embarrasing. I’m going to try and add an extra 5 mins on a week until I can work up to 40mins in one go. Ryohei has take a liking to the bike too, and uses it before bed to get a good night.

– Had my first (and probably) only hanami of the year this weekend. I was invited by the same girl who hosted a Thanksgiving party last November, all in all there were about 10 people there, mostly foreign and a few Japanese. It was a really good time!! I hadn’t had any sake for a while, so I got quite tipsy after a few chu-his. Whoops!! But it was really fun!! And it was probably the most beautiful day of the spring so far, so we got lucky!!

– Was working with members of the Queensland Ballet for my job, they are having a one day performance in Kobe today so I got free tickets (S – seats!!) So I’ll be attending the ballet after work today! I haven’t had a good “cultured” night out for a while so I am really looking forward to it!!

– Ryohei’s had it rough lately, he had a practice test Sunday which he didn’t do well on… but it was for a test which has a lot of subjects and the one that he really wants to be (Court Offices) has less subjects, so he’d decided that he’s mainly going to study those and then after that test is over (June 1st) study the other subjects again… sounds confusing to me too… he was so depressed after the failed test though. *sigh*

– Another cute Ryohei thing… this morning before he left for school

R: Am I being affectionate enough lately?
S: Yes
R: Ok, well, if I’m not please tell me.

Haha he’s so cute. I love him so much!!! *mush mush mush*

BTW!! My blogging buddy Lulu may be coming to stay for a few days during Golden Week!!! I’m so excited to meet her!!!!