Thursday, December 13, 2018

Favorite Things


List of my favorite things lately that are bringing sunshine on these cold December days.

1. John Legend's Christmas Album is legendary! Seriously, we have been dancing to it and it's on repeat all day long. Also, Frank Sinatra's Christmas is equally great and remind me of my Dad :) CLICK HERE TO LISTEN.

2.  I opened an ETSY SHOP this past month and have over 100 sales!! It called Simply Lysie! It seriously makes me so happy that people are loving my work and saying so many nice words. Here are a few of my Christmas Nativities! 


Also, just finished this one and love how it turned out up close! 


3. The NIKE APP has launched in Japan! It's been three days and done SO GOOD. I also get my husband BACK SOON! YAY! He seriously has been doing 15-17 hour days and working Saturdays too.  I'm excited to see more of him and so excited it's been SO successful so far! GO RILEY! <3 
Visiting Dad at work in the "War Room"

"Top" Shopping App in Japan- Day 2 after the launch! 



4. Jogging Stroller!!! Our friends are going to be gone most the month and brought me their jogging stroller to borrow and HOLY COW it's like a BMW, so smooth and SO FUN to run with Luke. We are converted. I have been pulling out our normal stroller to use on our normal errands and Luke has been requesting his new lift, very persistently. It cracks me up he has an opinion. 


5. THIS clip on youtube!!  #PARENTGOALS 

6. MY SISTER NICOLE VISITS TOMORROW!! We are seriously excited to play tour guides and go on lots of good adventures with her this next week. We have 2 YEARS to catch-up on! 

7. Gingerbread Playdough! We have been having fun this past few days with this gingerbread playdough. SO FUN. Riley might of ate some on accident. . . 

Friday, November 30, 2018

Humble Pie.

Thanksgiving isn’t exactly a Japanese holiday. No turkeys to be found in grocery store isles, or stuffing, or canned pumpkin, or practically anything in a traditional thanksgiving dinner— except potatoes I suppose. Yams? Totally different here. You have to travel to specially import stores to pick up these things and pay a fortune. If it wasn’t for good ward friends that invite us to their Thanksgiving dinners- we probably wouldn’t have them here. But, we had TWO really good dinners on different weekends this year and seriously so much to be grateful for! 

This is our THIRD Thanksgiving we celebrated in Japan! I was in charge of bringing just a pie. . . A pie, simple right? Unless you live in Japan. Cooking is my biggest challenge here.  I won’t go into much detail about the woes of trying to locate a normal size pie dish (everything is so mini here!), or figure out how to make/buy a stinkin pie crust here. . .  or traveling 2 hours and buying a little bag of chocolate chips for four times the amount it should be. . . or whipping cream BY HAND for hours.... but we made Ted's Famous Chocolate Haupia Pie (Hawaii Classic). YAY.

In situations like that, I just miss America and how much easier and convenient things can be there. It would of been ten times easier, less time consuming and WAY cheaper. It’s pretty easy to focus on what you don’t have and lack, but I think the point of Thanksgiving is the opposite and being grateful for what you have. 

So, I know this entry is sounding very vent-ish and ungrateful-- but I think also when it’s hard and challenging is when a different level of gratitude comes? When things aren’t handed to you on a silver platter (or lined up in a row when you enter a grocery store), when your family isn’t surrounding you and you are far away. It’s not until you experience sickness that you are truly grateful for good health right?

We had a seriously awesome Thanksgiving and had two great traditional meals with some of the most amazing inspiring people. We have the best little life in Tokyo and I seriously am so grateful for the experiences here. I have the funniest, hardworking husband and cutest kid that brings so much joy to my day. We both have jobs right now, awesome families, pretty bodies, and so many blessings!

Here are some random food pictures:

Whipping the cream. . . FOREVER LONG.

Dinner at Griffins 

Random picture of the Williams Family and Riley & Luke 
Riley took this one of the boys at the Gilbert's Thanksgiving
Gilberts Thanksgiving- She homemade the stuffing, with homemade sourdough and other stuff! 


Thursday, November 22, 2018

Glorious Weekends

Riley started a new position at work and it's been pretty intense with crazy hours so the weekends are extra meaningful to have him home and just being able to enjoy time together as a family. The last few weekends we have gone to different parks in Tokyo and had picnics and renting bikes and just enjoyed the fall weather and leaves. It has been glorious. 











picnic spot

 fall wonderland












Sunday, November 18, 2018

Maneki-Neko


“Life is amazing. And then it's awful. And then it's amazing again. And in between the amazing and awful it's ordinary and mundane and routine. Breathe in the amazing, hold on through the awful, and relax and exhale during the ordinary. That's just living heartbreaking, soul-healing, amazing, awful, ordinary life. And it's breathtakingly beautiful.” -  L.R. Knost

That was the quote that came to mind when I was journaling and looking at these ordinary days with Luke exploring Japan and a million beckoning cats. 


 Feeding the cat a rock. . . 
 My favorite picture of lately




 one million cats. 


 I spy Luke. 







always full speed ahead. . .