My husband will leave for the US this evening.

Since he is a procrastinator, he had a lot of things to prepare yesterday.

He packed his baggage in the morning.

And he also went to work in the afternoon to prepare for his staff's tasks of this week while he is absent.

When he came home around 7pm, our children were so excited and clung to him.

He will rent an iPad and a Wifi-router at the airport but I know he doesn't know how to get an Apple ID and download apps.

So I wanted him to explain it to him, but our children were too noisy and we couldn't have time to do it.

Maybe they understood well that we will not be able to see him for a week.

My husband got up at 2am and I got up at 4am today.

We don't get enough time to talk unless it is early.

I helped him to get an Apple ID and taught him how to connect Wifi, download apps, use message and Facetime.

I asked him:

"Do you have your passport ready?"

"Oh! .... Yeah, of course."

He seemed to be surprised, but smiled at me.

"Are you sure? Maybe you have not prepared!"

"Well, where did I put it ?"

He started looking for his passport.

I went to get it and handed over it for him.

"Here you are!" "Oh, thank you!"

I am a little worried about him, he has not had enough sleep recently and he will be suffering from a jet rug.

I hope he will come back safely.

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A man who is a supervisor at a gas fitting work site came to our house to inform us that the gas fitting work in front of our house will be scheduled from 9am to 5pm yesterday morning.

When we went out by the car, a digger was digging up the road in front of our house.

I wondered whether we were able to drive though there by car, I asked the man I talked to earlier:

"Excuse me, but we would like to get the car out of our house."

"Oh, sure! Please wait a minute."

He smiled at us and gave directions to the driver of the digger.

The digger was moved by the driver, and the man guided us out of our parking space.

We felt sorry for them because they would have to move their vehicle whenever we go out by car.

So we decided to go where we were scheduled to go yesterday in one go.

This meant, they would be required one movement of their vehilcle once.

We came home in the afternoon.

"Welcome back!"

One of them who was tall and wore a helmet smiled at my daughter waving his hand.

She also waved her hand to him.

I told my children:

"Look! You can see a gas pipe. We rarely have such an opportunity. The gas which is used when you turn on the gas stove and I cook with comes to our house through them. I am surprised that the gas pipe is in such a deep place! Maybe it is at the depth you could be buried."

"Wow! How deep! They are yellow!"

They looked into the big hole in front of our house.

One of the gas plumbers told my husband:

"The material of gas pipes have been changed from iron to polyethylene. If a big earthquake occurs, an iron pipe would break easily but a polyethylene gas pipe would be able to endure it because it can bend."

 "Really? I didn't know that."

We waved our hands to them and entered our house.

I was impressed to hear this.

Earthquakes often occur here in Japan and Japanese people have suffered from serious damages.

But they learned from the many severe experiences and they tried to improve many things to prevent damages.

This is one way to live in this country which is often suffered from natural disasters.

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Don't be afraid of failure

My husband works really hard.

He always comes home after midnight.

He came home at 4:30am 2 days ago and at 2:00am last night, but he has already woken up and was preparing to take an online English lesson from 6:30am.

He said:

"I am sleepy."

"Yeah, you must be sleepy!"

I answered.

He will go to the US on a business trip next Monday for a week.

He is also learning English and he and I belong to the same online English school.
But he speaks very little English.

But he can communicate with foreign people because he isn't reluctant to speak English though he doesn't have enough skill and he gets by with body language and a little English.
In my case, I felt embarrassed to speak English when I was a high school student because I worried whether I spoke correctly.

I stayed in Canada for a month to take an ESL class at a college when I was a university student.

I overcame my resistance to speak English during the stay.

I really envy his attitude, he isn't afraid of failure.

He has already had to communicate important things to people who don't understand Japanese.

Maybe it is neither to get a high score of TOEIC test nor to remember more vocabularies.

(Of course both of them are important, too.)

I think that it is most important to do your best when trying to express hard to describe feelings and concepts.

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Manners which tourists should observe

I saw a thought-provoking news report on NHK morning news yesterday morning.

It was a news report to explaining that local residents are confused by unexpected effects associated with the starting of operation of Hokuriku Shinkansen(bullet train).

It has been 10 months since the Hokuriku Shinkansen opened for business.
A lot of tourist have visited sightseeing spots in Ishikawa prefecture.

But one of the sightseeing spots called Omicho market is annoyed with unexpected effects due to an increase of tourist.

The local residents were disgruntled that they can't take their time to look for something in the market because too many tourists go there and pose in front of stores to take photos.

Some of the foreign tourists grabbed a big crab for sale and took the photo in front of a store though the tourists didn't buy them.

One of the shopkeepers said in the news:

"We display the notice "NO PHOTOGRAPHY", but the situation has not improved yet."

I thought this is a serious problem.

I think it is good for them to increase tourist numbers, but because of the tourists who don't have good manners, residents are unsure how to react.

Previously my family and I went to the market near our house, I was about to take a photo of the fish department.

Then my 7-year-old son told me:

"Mom! Don't take a photo here. Look! There is a notice on the wall."

I looked at the wall, there was a notice which said "NO PHOTOGRAPHY".

"Oh, I didn't notice it. Thank you!"

I felt embarresed.

Since people have not only cameras but also smartphones nowadays, they often take photos more than before and they want to upload them to their SNS.

I understand their feelings, because I have tried to take photos as a tourist, too.

But I think we should observe manners when we take photos.

It was really thought-provoking news for me.

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What is the most important?

The marathon meet was held at my 7-year-old son's elementary school yesterday.

He told me yesterday morning:

"I don't want to run..."

"I understand. When I was a high school student, I had to take part in the marathon meet at school. I really didn't like it. But you will not have to practise running after it. Do your best!"

I didn't go to see him because I was busy for my work.

His friend's mother informed me by e-mail that he came the 21st.

After we came home, my son showed me a small piece of paper and said:

"I was in the 20th position when I ran for practise 2 days ago. I dropped one place."

He was disappointed.

His rank and time were written in the paper.

I told him:

"But, look! Today your time is 40 seconds faster than yesterday's! Isn't that something? I know marathon is really hard, but you did a great job!"

I hugged him, and he smiled at me.

I think winning is not important.

What's important is that you do your best and you are better than your were yesterday.

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Scared frozen road

When I got up yesterday morning, the snow had piled up about 5cm.

It was a really cold morning, the lowest temperature was -4 degrees Celsius (24.8 Fahrenheit).

The water in the small empty plastic containers which my 5-year-old daughter put outside yesterday were frozen.

When I took my daughter to the nursery school, the road was almost frozen.

Since it was powder snow, the surface of the snow twinkled like stars.

I told my daughter,

"Look! The snow is twinkling in the sunshine!"

"Wow! How beautiful!"

We were fascinated by the natural beauty.

Some small children slipped and fell down.

Since I don't have winter tires, I had to drive my car very slowly and carefully when I went to my office.

When I drove on the downhill path near my house and applied the brake, my car slipped a little and the car wouldn't stop right away.

I was really scared.

Most of drivers drove carefully and slowly, the main road I drove was jammed with traffic.

But it was good for me because I couldn't drive my car fast.

I finally arrived at our office safely, but I was late for the beginning of my shift.

Days like today only happen once or twice a year around here.

I think we don't have to prepare snow tires becuase they are expensive, but I really tought I needed them today!

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How to make an unpleasant daikon delicious

I worked yesterday.

Since I finished working earlier than usual, I come home at 4:30pm.

Since it was a very cold day yesterday, I wanted to eat something warm.

I made Tonjiru for dinner.

Tonjiru is miso soup with pork and vegetables.

As a child, my mother used to make it on such a cold day like today.

"I am going to use this daikon which you harvested yesterday for dinner. But... this radish smells a little hot. I wonder if it's OK. Well, maybe it doesn't matter."

My husband and our 5-year-old daughter harvested it from our garden last Saturday.

I cut pork, daikon, carrot, green onions, burdock and shimeji mashrooms.

Then I stir-fried them and boiled them in soup stock for a while, then I put miso and dissolved it in the soup.

After I finished making Tonjiru, I had a taste.

"Why?? It isn't tasty. Oh, I've got it! Maybe it is because of Daikon. Hey, have a taste this!"

My husband tried to taste it.

"This daikon have a strong alkaline taste. You should have pre-boiled it in advance."

"But, I didn't think that it was such an unpleasant taste!"

I was really disappointed.

I asked:

"Is it edible for you? I don't want to eat it."

"It is edible for me. Wait, I will add this."

He suddenly started grating ginger and put it in the Tonjiru.

"Have a taste!"

I tasted it.

"Oh! It is nice! Wow, you are great!"

He rescued my failed dish brilliantly!

"Thank you! I am counting on you!"

Thnaks to him, we enjoyed having dinner.

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A laxurious family day

My husband and I had a day off and my 5-year-old daughter didn't have a lesson at her music school yesterday.

Since it was a rare opportunity that all family members are at home on Saturday recently, my 7-year-old son said last Friday's night:

"Let's go somewhere!"

"Where do you want to go?"

"I want to go to the park!"

"Park... do you want to go to the park on such a cold day?? Maybe it will snow from tomorrow afternoon."

I thought I wanted to go somewhere warm.

I suggested to my husband yesterday morning:

"Why don't we go to Onsen? I want to relax there."

There is a public natural hot spring which it takes about 30 minutes by car from our house and we have been there several times before.

I reserved a chartered family bath.

Onsen are usually segregated for men and for women, so we also have to divide into two groups, our son & husband and our daughter & me.

But we can monopolize a small Onsen room for an hour and enjoy taking a bath together and we don't have to mind other people, so I reserved a chartered family bath though I had to pay an extra charge.

The water tasted salty because it was a salt spring.

It was really soft water.

Soft water means that it includes various kinds of minerals and we feel it is slippy.

We talked a lot and enjoyed the good water of theOnsen very much.

I could really relax and get warm there.

Our dinner was Sukiyaki yesterday!

My 5-year-old daughter and I went to the supermarket during my son's Karate lesson last Friday evening and I found some discounted beef for Sukiyaki and I bought it.

Since Japanese beef is expensive, I don't usually buy it.

So Sukiyaki is a rare dinner menu item for us!

We enjoyed a luxurious day as if we totally went for the hot spring trip.

Sometimes it is good to take a break and relax, isn't it?

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Clumsy mom and son

Since he had the flu and they didn't offer the class during the New Year's vacation, my 7-year-old son went to the Karate practice for the first time in a month yesterday evening.

I always help him to put on his Karate uniform, but it is difficult for me to tie the obi (belt).

They offered us a handout which includes an explanation with photos showing how to tie the obi and I always refer to it when I tie it.

But I am not able to tie it well even now.

"What't the next step?"

"Mom, are you sure about this?"

"Wait a minute.... I am done! Maybe.. "

I almost forgot how to tie it yesterday.

"Oh! Loot at the time! Let's go!"

Before they started practice, the teacher looked at my son's obi and he retied it.

"Oh, I tied it in the wrong way again.."

The teacher told my son that he should tie it by himself.

 But I think it is still difficult for him to tie it by himself because he is also clumsy like me!

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The winning numbers of the New Year's postcard lottery of this year

Since I forgot to check the winning numbers of the New Year's postcard lottery for this year, I checked them last evening.

My 7-year-old son said:

"Maybe we will not win in the lottery at all."

My 5-year-old daughter said:

"I hope we will win something in the lottery."

It was funny that their characters were completely different even though they were siblings.

I checked all numbers on the postcards we got.

"Wow! The card from your teacher won the third prize! "

I told my 7-year-old son.

He was so surprised to hear that and came to me saying:

"Really? What will I get?"

"A stamp sheet with a monkey drawn on it which is this year's Chinese zodiac including an 82 yen stamp for an envelope and a 52yen stamp for a postcard."

"Yes! I did it! I won the prize! I won the prize! You must envy me!"

"I envy you..."

My 5-year-old daughter said while playing the Electone (an electronic organ by YAMAHA).

"Why don't you tell your teacher about it tomorrow? Maybe she will be happy to hear that."

"Yeah, OK!"

The prizes are changed every year.

The six digit numbers are written at the bottom right of each New Year's postcard, and we check the winning numbers which are announced by the Japan Post corporation.

The first prize of this year is a choice.

You can choose any one item from cash 100,000yen, an invitation to traverl around Japan, 40V inch 4K TV, Cooking Appliances sets, a tablet computer and a printer, a vacuum cleaner set, or Nintendo games and massage equipment set.

The second prize is also multiple choice.

You can choose one of various kinds of food and homeware gifts.

I look forward to checking the number every year, but I have won only the stamp sheet so far.

I wish someone whom I sent a New Year's card to or my family members will win the first prize someday!

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Snowball fight

It snowed in the early morning yesterday and the snow had already piled up about 10cm when my children woke up at 7am.

I opened the sliding shutter of the bedroom and said:

"Good morning! Look at outside. We are in the snow country!"

They who usually can't wake up at once jumped out of bed and looked outside.

"Wow!! Pure white!"

Thanks to the snow, they got up earlier than usual.

Before I took my 5-year-old daughter to the nursery school, I removed the snow which had piled on my car.

And I threw it to my daughter.

She was excited and threw the snow back to me.

We enjoyed the snowball fight for a while.

Then one of our neighbors who was removing the snow on his car called my daughter:

"Come on and look at it!"

He made a snowman for her.

"Wow! He made Olaf!"

Since we enjoyed the snow too much, my daughter was almost late for the nursery school.

Maybe even adults might be able to go back to the innocent times of childhood if we can enjoy playing in the snow.

I thought it was really good for me because I had a day off yesterday and I had enough time to enjoy playing with my daughter in the morning.

I went shopping in the afternoon.

The snow was already started to melt, but it still remained in the places where there was no sunshine.

When my 7-year-old son came back from school, I told him:

"I bought two snacks. You told me that you need some boxes in the art class, so I chose them."

"Thank you!"

Needless to say that I bought them not only for him but also for me.

I love chocolate pie!

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It is snowing!

My 5-year-old daughter told me last night:

"We poured water into some small empty plastic containers and placed them on the balcony at the nursery school!"

"Maybe the weather forecast said that maybe it will snow tomorrow and the water will freeze in the early morning?"

"Yes! It is not winter if it will not snow! If it will snow tomorrow, we will be able to play with snow!"

My 7-year-old son also said:

"We also did it at school."

"If it snows tomorrow, I can soon find out when I wake up in the morning.
 Whenever it snows, it is silent, and very bright outside."

"I am looking forward to tomorrow!"

They said.

It snows about two or three times a year around here, so it is rare to play with snow for children.

When I woke up this morning and saw the entrance door, it looked white.

I opened the window of the living room, it was snowing!

It is still snowing now.

My children will be happy to see it.

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Soy beans for Setsubun

After I picked my children up, we stooped at the unmanned fruits and vegetables sale stand near the nursery school the previous evening.

We found a bag of soy beans there.

I asked my children:

"I think it is for Setsubun. Do you want to eat them this year? I will roast and sprinkle salt on them."

"Yes! I want to eat them!"

I bought it.

Setsubun is on February 3rd, it is known as the last day of winter in Japan.

We throw beans to ward off bad luck (devil),  to drive out devil and call in good luck (fortune) into our house on the day of Setsubun.

After we finish throwing beans, we gather them all and eat the same number of beans as our age.

It is said that if we eat one extra, it will stop us getting sick and we will stay healthy for the whole year.

But since I don't like soy beans very much, we had not eaten them so far.

When I found the beans, I changed my mind because they looked delicious.

I thought that maybe my 6-year-old daughter would get angry on Setsubun because she is the youngest in our family and her share will be only 7 beans.

She will surely say:

"That's not fair! I want to eat more of them!"

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An adorable misunderstanding

My husband took my 7-year-old son to the clinic and I took my 5-year-old daughter to the music school Saturday morning.

His doctor wrote a the certificate of recovery from Infectious Disease for him, it means he can go to school from Monday!

We went to Sushiro, one of the famous sushi-go-round restaurants for lunch.

We enjoyed eating Sushi.

Since my husband went to work after lunch, my children and I went to the library.

On my way there, My son told my daughter:

"We bought Jyoa for you at the clinic!"

It is a drinkable yogurt and they like it very much becaue they have drunk it at the nursery school.

Since there is a vending machine including it at the clinic, whenever we go to the clinic, I buy it for my children.

My daughter looked at Jyoa and said:

"It says Sashiro!"

"Sashiro???  What's Sashiro? Do you mean it says Sushiro(the name of the sushi-go-round restaurant where we went for lunch)? "

My son and I didn't understand what she wanted to say.

After a while, he and I realized what she said.

"You mean, さしぐち(Sashiguchi), right?

 ロ of Katakana and 口 of Kanji look similar, but they are completely different.

 口 is pronounced as くち(Kuchi)!"

さしぐち(Sashiguchi) means the pouring port of the straw.

She can read Hiragana and a few Katakana now,but she can't read Kanji.

She read さし口 (sashiguchi) with さしろ(sashiro) by mistake.

Since it was right after we went to Sushiro, we mistook さしろ for スシロー(Sushiro).

We laughed together.

It takes a long time to learn a language.

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My children and I took a bath together last night.

Since we took a bath separately to prevent catching the flu from my son during he had the flu, I felt happy because my son almost recovered the flu and we could take a comfortable bath together.

My 6-year-old daughter and I sang "Let it Go" together.

While we were singing, my 7-year-old son wrote some Kanji on the mirror which was fogged with the steam.

"Look mom! "

He said.

But since I was singing, I only glanced at it.

After that, my 5-year-old daugher also wrote some Kanji on the mirror and said:

"Mom, look at it!"

"Oh, you wrote Kanji! Good job!"

Suddenly, my son started speaking ill of his sister.

"What a terrible handwriting! This kanji is wrong!"

"Stop it. If you were said like that, you would surely get angry."

He got mad and started crying.

"I hate her! She is really annoying!  I don't want to see her any more! I will not talk with her forever!"

"Why on earth are you upset? Is it because I didn't look at your Kanji?"

"No! I wanted to learn how to write Kanji!"

"What are you saying? I have never taught your sister how to write Kanji!"

"Dad did!"

What he said didn't make sence.

Since he was about to hit her, I took my daughter to outside the bath.

My daughter didn't get angry with him.

"Why don't you get angry with him though he said what you hate?

  He told that he hates you and he didn't want to see your face! "

I asked her.

"Because I am kind! I like him. I don't get angry with him."

She smiled at me.

My son abused her in the bath while my daughter and I were talking.

"What a kind girl you are!

 Your son is under a big stress now, so you don't need to listen to what he is saying.

 You know, he is usually a kind brother to you!

 Can you go to the living room ahead?

 You should stay away from him now."


She went to the living room.

After a while, my son came out of the bath while being angry.

"I understand your feeling. Maybe you envy your sister, don't you?"

"I NEVER envy her!"

He got mad.

"I envy her!

 She is easy-going, carefree, and doesn't get angry very often.
 I want to be calm like her, but I can't because it is my character.

 If I were your sister, I would surely get angry with you.
 I mean, your character is really similar to mine.

 I am sorry, the reason why you are in bad mood easily when you are not feeling well is because your character is really similar to mine!

 If I were you, I would be in bad mood like you because I would want to be like her but I couldn't.

 That's why she makes you irritated."

I hugged him and said:

"I love you even if you get mad.

 You are my dearest son even if you are annoyed.

 But don't hit her anymore, she has no offense.
 She also likes you."

He nodded and went to the living room.

After a while, I could hear that they were playing togeter happily from the living room.

I have given priority to my son so far.

Because he is an elder brother.

But the difference in their ages is only a year and five months.

He has been feeling a pressure from her since he was a little boy.

That's why he never wants to lose her.

I need to give him a pride as an elder brother so that he will not become servile and he will be able to be kind to his sister.

Furthermore, I believe that it is a parent's duty to give a confidence and fulfillment which they are really loved to our children.

Because it is a biggist gift that I recieved from my parents.

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My ideal mother

I wrote that my 7-year-old son has had a flu since last Saturday's night.

My mother came to our house to take care of my son again yesterday.

I asked her to bring the game named Donjyara 2 days ago.

Donjyara is a picture matching game like mah‐jong and it has been loved by Japanese families for a long time.

I wrote about it in my previous post : http://a-o-j-m.blogspot.jp/2015/02/donjara-good-old-game.html

It was mine and it is still at my parent's home.

Since my 7-year-old son likes playing it very much,  I thought my son and my mother might be able to kill time playing it.

When I left for work at 8:50am, they started playing it.

When I came home at 5pm, they were still playing it!

"Are you still playing with Donjyara?"

"Yes. We have been playing it except when we had lunch and watched TV for a while."

My mother answered.

"You are really patient! If I were you, I could not keep playing it for such a long time!"

I really admired my mother.

"If I were not patient, I could not take care of them!"

She said.

They actually had been playing with it for more than 7 hours!

"You two, no one in the world can play it with you for such a long time! Maybe your grandma is an only one person who can put up with it!"

I told my children but they didn't hear me because they were absorbed in playing it.

Since I am short-tempered, I really admire my mother.

She was always kind to me when I was a child, and she often played with me and my sister.

Whenever I recall my mother, she was always smiling at me.

She is my ideal mother.

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One more day

I asked my mother to come to my house and take care of my 7-year-old son yesterday because I needed to go to work.

I told my mom:

"It will be a hard day for you to spend with him all day. He has already had to stay home for four days. He finished reading comics, he didn't want to play with his toys anymore, he is tired of staying home. He will be frustrated again today."

When I came home around 5pm, my 5-year-old daughter ran to the entrance crying and my 7-year-old son was chasing her to try to hit her.

He was mad at her.

"What happened?"

According to my mother, they played "The Game of Life" together again.

Since my daughter won the game,  he got mad at her.

"I didn't want to lose her."

He said.

After that, my father came to our house to pick my mother up.

When they went home, I held my son and took him to outside of our house.

"It's cold!"

He clung to my neck.

It seemed to refresh him, he stopped being in bad mood.

My son and family need to put up with staying home one more day.

We will take him to the clinic to see the doctor tomorrow because we need a certificate of recovery from Infectious Disease to hand in to his school.


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Displeased my son

My 7-year-old son's fever completely went down yesterday's morning.

But he can't go to school until Friday by the rules of School Health Law.

Since I had a day off yesterday, we stayed home all the day.

He watched TV then we went to our garden and basked in the sun because it was a really warm and nice day.

He played a game using my iPad after that, then we had lunch.

He watched TV a little in the afternoon, but he suddenly was in bad mood.

"Oh, I am tired of watching TV. I have eye strain. I am bored! I have nothing to do. What am I supposed to do now, Mom?"

"How about drawing?"

"No, my hands are tired."

"Then how about playing Lego or LaQ (blocks)? Why don't we read a book together? Or do you want to go outside the house? Do you want to play Sugoroku again? Do you want to have snacks?"

"No! No! I don't want to do anything!"

"Then you think for yourself. I don't have any other ideas."

"OK. I will do this."

He started breaking my 5-year-old daughter's block work saying, "Mom, what am I supposed to do next?"

"I don't know! Think for yourself!"

I was also irritated by him.

I understood his feelings.

"You are frustrated because you can't go out, aren't you?"

"No! I don't want to go out!"

I was so annoyed by him that I went out of the living room because I wanted to be separated from him.

After a while, he came to me and said:

"I want to play hide and seek."

I still felt impatient with him, but I thought I needed to calm down.


We enjoyed playing it.

Then I went to the nursery school to pick my 5-year-old daughter up.

After we came home, my son said,

"I want to play "The Game of Life".

It is very poplular board game in Japan.

It is a Sugoroku, we can experience verious kinds of life events through the game.

We need to pay if we buy something, go abroad, buy a fire & car & life insurance, and so on, and we can get married and have babies in the game.

We started playing it, but it was the beginning of the storm.

My son often stopped his piece on the spaces where he needed to pay money.

He got grumpy.

My daughter started crying because her piece stopped on the space and it said :

"Your house burned down because of fire, If you bought a fire insurance, you can get $20,000."

"My house burned down! And I don't have a fire insurance! "

She cried bitterly.

The game ended at 6pm and it was usually the time to start dinner, but I had not started cooking yet because of the game.

The winner was my daughter, but nobody looked happy.

"I want to play it again! I want to win!"

My son said.

"No way! Who on earth will make dinner for you?"

"We will help you!"

They said, but I didn't want to listen to them anymore because I was really tired of their bad mood.

I really want to go back to our normal routine.

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My 7-year-old son's fever went down about 37.7 degrees and his appetite increased little by little.

He didn't want to lie down any more.

He said:

"Let's play Sugoroku!"

Sugoroku is one of the Japanese board games.

We have a Sugoroku which was a free gift that came with the encyclopedia of the space.

It's Doraemon themed.

We play it by rolling the dice and moving a piece forward.

Fortunately, my 5-year-old daughter won the game.

Since she is a sore loser, if she lost the game, she would surely cry.

The second winner was my 7-year-old son, the next was my husband, and I finished last.

It was a peaceful position to be in.

I was relieved that my children were able to enjoy it without crying.

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Playing doctors and patients

I wrote that my 7-year-old son has the flu in yesterday's post.

He had slept all day yesterday.

I was sorry for my 5-year-old daughter because I couldn't go out with her anywhere.

But she was very kind to her brother.

When he woke up, she went to him and rang the bell and sang a song.

"Wear the mask and be quiet!"

I warned her.

She was about to cry and said,

"I only want to encourage him..."

"Oh, I am sorry my angel. What a kind sister you are!"

She smiled at me and started singing a Christmas song.

"Santa Claus already came to our house last month, right?"

My son smiled at her and me.

I told him about one of today's fun events.

"When you were sleeping, your sister and I played a doctor and a patient.

 It was so interesting!

 At first, she wanted me to play a patient.

 I said,  ' I have a sore throat.'

 Then she said, ' So I will give you some medicine!"

 I was so surprised and asked her, ' You have not examined me yet, Doctor! I think you can't give me medicine yet.'

 She smiled at me and said, 'Oh, sorry. Open your mouth! Oh-oh, your throat is red. I will give you a shot!'

 She gave a shot on my back of the hand.

 'There?? We usually receive a shot in the arm!'

'Oh, I mistook it. I am sorry...'

'Doctor! Don't get absorbed watching TV while examining me!'

 She started watching Draemon on TV while she is examining me.

 She is funny, isn't she?"

My son laughed to hear that.

I continued talking to him.

"After that, we exchanged the roles, I played as a doctor and she played as a patient.

 I asked her, 'What happened?'

 She answered, 'I have a sore throat.'

 I thought she imitates you because she went to the clinic with you this morning and she saw you were examined by a doctor.

 I asked her, 'When did it start aching?'

 She said, 'Since tomorrow!' "

We laughed to hear her funny answer.

My son said:

"She might come from the future using time machine!"

"It's interesting! But... it is as if she will have a sore throat tomorrow! Oh, no! Don't jinx me! "

We laughed together.

I was relieved that I could see his smile.

I was also glad to see my daughter's kindness.

She said:

"I am bored because my brother is sick. I hope he will get well soon!"

I am glad that to see they are close siblings.

When I took a bath with my daughter, she behaved like a baby.

She wanted me to help her with everything.

I thought that she was lonely and wanted to monopolize me because I needed to take care of my son and couldn't play with her very much.

Maybe it was a toddler regression.

I accepted all of her emotional dependence and I hugged her saying,

"I was glad because you were very kind to your brother. What a kind girl! I love you!"

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The terrible flu

My 7-year-old son had had a fever since midnight Saturday.
His fever fell down to about 37.3 degrees yesterday morning, so our family went to the car dealer for the periodic maintenance check of our cars.

My son and I went to bed at 7:30pm, but he woke me up at 1am.

"Mom, it's too hot! and I have a sore throat."

I touched him and he was very hot.

His fever was 38.8 degrees.

"Do you want something to drink?"

I brought a cup of water to him.

He drank it and tried to sleep, but his fever was getting higher and higher and he seemed not to be able to fall asleep.

I kept patting his back and cooling his forehead with a wet cool towel.

His fever finally reached nearly 40 degrees around 2pm.

He looked so painful.

I suspected that his fever was due to the flu.

But I was surprised as to whether the flu of this year was so strong because my children and I already had got the flu shot last November.

After all this my son and I got hardly any sleep after 1pm.

Since today is a national holiday in Japan, most of hospitals and clinics are closed.

So I decided to take him to the holiday emergency clinic.

He took the flu test and was diagnosed with the flu by the doctor.

He got medicines and came home.

After he had the medicine, he finally could fall asleep and he is still sleeping now.

I am relieved that the cause of his fever could be figured out.

He must not go to school at least for this week, but he will be able to recover the flu by the end of this week.

My job is now in the busiest month of the year, so I couldn't take a day off tomorrow.

So my husband will stay with him tomorrow morning.

I asked my boss to take a half day off tomorrow, and I will take care of him tomorrow afternoon.

I really hope that my 5-year-old daughter will not catch the flu from him.

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Tissue-pack marketing

Our company sometimes does the tissue-pack marketing for a sales promotion.

We stand in front of the shopping mall and hand out small portable tissue packages with flyers of our company to passers‐by. 

I did it yesterday.

It is very interesting because I can encounter various kinds of people.

When they pass by in front of me, I say " Hello, we are ~ (the name of our company)", then hold out a small pack of tissue.

Some people receive it saying "Thank you."

Some people receive it, but they don't say anything and try to go through quickly.

Some very polite people stop walking and make a bow and receive it saying "Thank you".

Some people don't receive it and completely ignore me.

Some people show the palm of their hand to me and it means they don't want it.

In a rare case, there was a man who received it and threw our flyer away in front of me.

It is like people- watching.

I can see what kind of person I want to be through this work.

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