Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pumpkins, Turkeys, and Everything in Between

Happy November everyone! Time is flying by; it's hard to believe that we have already been here for three months. There are definitely still things we miss about the States, but between our two amazing moms (one who sends us American movies and one who sends us American treats), we are still able to enjoy the luxuries of "home" while experiencing all that Japan has to offer. Below are some of the highlights of our week. 

Halloween party at Odaka Kogyou, the smallest school I work at. This witch is actually one of my favorite teachers that I work with. Her name is Miki. She is really enthusiastic and the students love her. How could you help it, really? Check out her hair. She is so festive.

We carved Japanese pumpkins. A little bit harder to carve than American pumpkins, but it worked out.

Bobbing for apples

This is the Halloween party with the English club at my main school. We decorated sugar cookies to look like ghosts. These girls love sweets! No wonder we get along so well :)

Our creation. This was the first time most of them (including the teacher) had ever carved a pumpkin.

Happy November! Can you tell what it is? It's a turkey! All of the teachers at school thought it was a chicken. No one here eats turkey, so they don't really recognize a giant cartoon version of one when it stares them down in the hall. And virtually no one knows about American Thanksgiving, so people were walking past while I was working on this bulletin board, making comments like, "Oh Halloween! Cool!" or "Christmastime, right?" No, no, no! Thanksgiving!

We took another trip to Tokyo this week with our branch to visit the Tokyo temple. It was a great trip. We ate lunch in this beautiful park.

We went hiking in the mountains with one of the members of our branch. We were so happy that we didn't miss all of the fall colors.

Amazing views from the top, above the clouds.

My favorite shot - doesn't the fog make it look so mystical?
Other than that, I have been plodding along on my grad school list. We are so blessed to have so many options (at least, I think it is a blessing - sometimes it doesn't feel like it!). Decisions are so hard for me, but I am proud to say that I have narrowed the list down to about eight schools, which range from Ireland to Oregon to Florida. If anyone out there has any insights about how to choose between eight good things, give me a call! Luckily, James has been really sympathetic and tough at the same time - exactly what I need in this kind of situation.

In the meantime, here is a talk that we shared in visiting teaching today. Hope you enjoy! Have a wonderful week everyone!

1 comment:

  1. I miss James's beard. I thought we had Jeremiah Johnson in our family. so you are trying to Americanize your Japanese students.
    We just got three free turkeys from Foodland we saved our coupons and they are giving them away this week.
    We had regional conference this weekend Prsident Eyring
    Elder Ballard Elder Hallstrom and Sister Esplin spoke rep primary. All 16 stakes in Hawaii. it was tremendous. We sure miss you and your wonderful spirit.