Monday, August 31, 2020

Rainbow Bridge Run

We ran across Tokyo’s iconic rainbow bridge from our house this month! Riley did it first and raves about it all week and the following week I did it. Another half-marathon for the books! We both decided it made the “top 5 fav run" of all-time and had to document it. 

It’s been running lately that has filled me with gratitude  and strengthened my love for Japan and for where we live now, knowing what a unique opportunity it is. I know one day I will miss running these streets and always having something new to discover. There is something so beautiful about running, about using your body as means of transportation to experience a world that only exists on foot. I had to stop on the bridge and snap a few photos and a sweaty selfie! 

I’m not fast or a talented runner, I have no idea why rhythmically lifting both feet off the ground and awkward arm swings and labored breath can be so appealing... but running has been a source of joy and satisfaction my whole life.  Running has helped me through some of the most challenging times and been a way to get headspace and unwind. These days it’s the way I connect with my self again and feel alive, not weighed down from carrying kids and keeping up with the constant demands that come with little ones. A chance to unplug from the world, ponder and be grateful for body and free.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Chronicles of Clay- 7 Months

Today makes 7 months with our little, big Clay! You have to watch Clay closely-- he is a full-time moving vacuum cleaner and destroyer of Luke's towers.  He choked a few times and even swallowed and digested some clay (playdough) that was later found in diaper. Luke is always building road-blocks in attempts to keep him from knocking down his creations. He started more solids, grew a few more teeth (zoom in to see those front ones) and is biting, and even pulling himself up on things! Growing way too fast. Clay has been initiated into the daily home wresting matches and loves playing with Luke (until things get too rough anyways).  Let the games begin!
 Avocado boogies
Big fans of PB over here, Clay included

 This boy is in everything, 2 minutes later the tomatoes were all over the floor. . . 

They share clothes: one day Luke, next day Clay, half-way through day, dirty clothes bin.
 Train adventures
both outside and indoors, see luke's train below 

these days are SO hot. . , 

. . . that one time Luke took a nap and Clay! Nap eclipse. I just decided to sit and enjoy the moment. 
The sleeping arrangement these days. . . 

Going to have to lower the crib, pulling himself up 

Saturday, August 22, 2020

Donut Date

Luke has been borderline obsessed with donuts this year. It's been pretty funny, as we haven't ever ate them but we made a cardboard donut shop and talk about donuts often. One 'bucketlist' item for America was going to a donut shop, but as we aren't going anytime soon I decided to take the boys on a donut date in Harajuku. The shop was ironically very American themed and was a fun little date. Not sure if donuts lived up to Luke's expectations, as halfway through his donut he stopped and wanted icecream . . .

Thought it was cute they misspelled California, also donut price = $4 USD 

Such a perfect message for this time:

Uplifting Thoughts: Grow Through the Cracks

Lately, I have been feeling the need to write down my impressions and uplifting thoughts and record them. Elder Richard G. Scott said: "Inspiration carefully recorded shows God his communications are sacred to us. Recording will also enhance our ability to recall revelation."  I discovered this week in the new Gospel "Living" App a place to easily record impressions but thought I should share some here, as this platform is one I refer back to often & keep for my kids. 

This month I have been noticing so many plants growing out of the sidewalks and walls, places of seemingly no soil or place to take root. I have started to notice these phenomenons literally all over, and something I started to watch for on my runs. So many wild flowers and weeds growing out of walls on buildings and up through sidewalks in the most unlikely places through the city.   

It's been feeling like Heavenly Father is trying to demonstrate and show me beauty and growth can pull through less than ideal circumstances and is better and stronger and more magnificent though it. I don't think I would have noticed or paid much attention to this same flower at all if it was planted across the way in a flower pot. 

I can't help but think of this year 2020 feeling like a new batch of heavy cement sidewalk spread out smothering my good soil and plans. Lots of feelings of being trapped and lack of sunshine.

Feeling the need to keep rooted, hold on, and push through. Eventually we will pull though, slip through the cracks, and see that sunshine that has been overhead the whole time.  

Decided to go for a little morning walk through the neighborhood to take a picture of a flower growing through cracks and the rest of the family decided to join. A few more pictures from the walk :)

Sunday, August 16, 2020

Odaiba Lovin!

WE DID A THANG! We left the neighborhood last weekend and went on our first family adventure to a favorite spot in Tokyo. It was seriously our first time as a family riding the train and going somewhere together besides the embassy. We have stuck to our local scenes, but felt SO NICE and a little strange to get out. We have played it really cautious with covid. We went to the beach in Odiba and had take-out curry! The sky showed off for us too!  

I love Odiba because it reminds me of America, the sidewalks are big and open. Not to mention there is also a lovely lady liberty. We couldn't go back to the States, so this is the closest second. 

Dinner of curry & sand (for Clay)