Saturday, January 22, 2011

JAPAN - (Friday, Saturday, & Sunday)

Sorry to picture are the last few days!!

Friday we went to a place called Marine World. It was basically like Sea World. My parents had never been and we thought that Ethan would have fun! It turned out to b super fun. It had any type of marine animal, diving shows, dolphin shows, and tons of different exhibits.
My sweet little Reese was a trooper! She would just chill in the stroller for most of the days! I'm so grateful for such a happy little baby!
I had to take a picture of the vending machines. They are EVERYWHERE! Also their cars...they remind me of the movie "Cars." They look like little cartoon cars blown up! Every now and again you would see a full size car from the US but most of them are all smashed cartoon cars. In Japan tons of people walk or ride their bikes. Parking is super hard to find and when you do find it and park a little thing comes up underneath your car. If you take off with that up it will rip out the bottom of your car, so you have to pay most every time you park!
Later that night we went to Fukuoka Tower. It's a really tall tower that overlooks all of Fukuoka. We went at night so that we could see it all lit up! It was awesome! I can't believe how big the city is! After that we hit up Hard Rock one last time! Ethan was exhausted from the day and didn't even make it for his meal to come out.

Saturday we got up and took the subway to a mall and market place called Tenjin. It was like a mall with one level all underground. We did some shopping and then headed back home. It was time to pack, do some last loads of laundry, and just hang out for our last night! We sat up late talking with my parents and were so sad that our trip was coming to an end.

Sunday was a hard morning. We got up, got ready, and then headed for the airport! After getting everything checked in, we only had 30 minutes to get through security and get to our gate! We said our goodbyes, shed some tears, and then left!
It was such a refresher spending time with my parents. It was fun to feel like they were right back at home. I loved just being with them, eating out, watching tons of movies at night, and just being together! Now only eighteen more months and they will be home again! We can't wait!

Friday, January 21, 2011

JAPAN - (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday)

Tuesday we headed to Costco for my parents to stock up on some food. It was fun driving there and getting out of the city. Out in the country there are a few more homes and tons of rice fields. We came back and let the kids nap and then headed to one of their favorite Ramen Noodle places. Everywhere you go there are only chopsticks so we tried to learn as best we could to use them. As you can see Kurt didn't get it down very good. He ended up with one noodle most of the time! The food was great though and I would have eaten there again!

On Wednesday we went to a place called Dazaifu. The AP's came with us that day and helped us get on all the right trains. They were such cute missionaries and I can just see how much they love my parents! The train was one of Ethan's favorite parts. Dazaifu was super cool. There were tons of little shops and lots and lots of little shrines. It's what I pictured Japan to be.
After seeing all there was to see we decided to eat at one of the little restaurants. It's customary for you to take your shoes off at many places in Japan, so we slipped them off and then sat on pillows at a little table. The food was actually really good; one of my favorites. We had so much fun laughing with the AP's and getting entertainment from our crazy Ethan.

Thursday we went to a Hakata Doll shop! My parents had purchased us all Hakata dolls this last Christmas and Kurt wanted to add a samurai to our doll. We went to a little store that had any type of Hakata doll you could think of. After the store we headed to a mall in the city and had some lunch along with some yummy crepes. It's so interesting to see how everything is in different from the US. The women's bathrooms have squatter toilets....which luckily I was able to avoid by finding one or two stalls with a normal toilet.
Later that night some of the missionaries stopped by with some chocolate treats for us and a "special" treat for Kurt called Nato. Lets just say the consistency looked like pinto beans and snot. It looked awful but the Japanese eat it with everything. I'll let the pictures tell you what Kurt thought of it.....
I was so glad that he didn't throw up on the counter, only in his mouth!
We also hit my mom's favorite store in Japan....THE DOLLAR STORE! We laughed so hard as we shopped with her. I don't think my mom ever went to the dollar store here, but now she thinks it's the greatest thing ever! We came out with some pretty awesome purchases. I've got a picture of my mom, dad, and Kurt, but my mom told me she would disown me if I ever posted I guess it will remain unseen!