Respect 尊敬

(This is one and half year old me looking at something on the ground, probably ants or some small bugs. Very fascinated...)

The last week was very busy with the teaching job.
There are many things to think about.
A classroom consists of children coming from different parenting styles, family structures and circumstances. How can I as a teacher create harmony with all that while I let each individual child blossom in his or her own way? There are many things to think about...

I love my students very much. As much as I love them, I cannot let them get away with their behaviors or words that are not appropriate. I chide them firmly yet with love, simply and honestly as I look into their eyes. Personally, what I want them to learn the most at school is to respect, respecting themselves, parents, friends, nature, and things in their lives. I want them to walk with respect whatever path they choose to walk on as they grow.

This school year which began last September will end in May. There are only four more months left. I would like to hold on tight and do my best for the rest of year.

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A New Rice Cooker 新しい炊飯器

(My rice cooker in a box. I carried it as a check-in luggage.)

I always wanted a rice cooker here on Maui. Well, I have lived without it this far (for 7 years); I cooked rice in a pot, but I felt that it would be convenient to have one for a couple of reasons: 1) I could keep rice warm, 2) I could be more efficient in cooking space (one less pot that would be occupying the stove), and 3) I could eat rice that taste better. All the rice cookers I found in the U.S. were not that great compare to what were available in Japan, so I was waiting for an opportunity to buy one in Japan and bring it back to Maui. The dream came true! This time, I bought a TIGER IH Rice Cooker Mini. Yay!!

I cooked rice with it, and it tasted great. I love the function of keeping cooked rice warm and reheating. It is not necessary to have it, so it is a bit of luxury to have one, but oh well. I splurged myself.

One of this year's resolutions is to eat well, so I think that this new friend will help me pursue that goal :-)

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いつも炊飯器は欲しいなぁと思っていました。まぁ、ここまで(7年近く)それ無しでやってこれたのですけど。(いつもお鍋でお米炊いてました。)まぁ、あったら便利だろうなと思う点はいくつかありました。その一 一度炊いたご飯を温かい状態でまた食べられること。 そのニ 料理をしているときにコンロの上を占領する鍋が一つ減るので料理の効率が上がる(そんなに料理しているのかと自分でつっ込みたくもなりますが)。 その三 炊飯器で炊いたお米の方がもっとおいしいような気がする。しかしアメリカで見つける炊飯器は皆一昔前の型で、いつか日本から個人的に輸入したいと思っていました。そしてそれが今回日本に帰った際に叶いました。タイガーのIH炊飯器ミニ(三合用ね)を購入したのです!




A Happy New Year! 明けましておめでとうございます

(Mishima Shrine in Uchiko, Ehime, Japan)

A Happy New Year to you all!

I am sorry for my late new year's greeting.

I am back on Maui. I left Japan on 7th and came back to Maui on 7th. I had to go to work the next day, and it was physically a little difficult due to the jet lag. But I did it! (Kids were cute as usual!)

Here are some photos from the New Year's day 2009 in Japan.




This is the gate of the Mishima Shrine. When I was a baby, my parents took me to this shrine for Omiyamairi. It is a traditional Shinto rite of passage in Japan for newborns. Please click here for more information. (Dad, if you have photos of me at that time, please scan and e-mail them to me if you can.) Once awhile, I visit this shrine and thank the god enshrined there, "Look, I am this big now. Thank you for watching over me." Then, the god responded back to me saying, "Oh yes, you are grown up. Glad to see you back. I'll watch over you this year as I have done for the past years, so walk steadily your path."

(Japanese) 三島神社の門。私は赤ちゃんの頃、ここ三島神社にお宮参りに連れてきてもらいました。(お父さん、もしそのときの写真があったら今度スキャンして送ってください。)時々こうして訪れては「ここまで大きくなりました。見守ってくださってありがとうございます。」と挨拶しています。三島神社に奉られている神さまに「おぉ、大きくなったねぇ!よく帰ってきた。ほら、今年も面倒みちゃるから、しっかり歩いていきなさいよ。」と言ってもらったような気がしつつ。

We went to my grandma's house on New Year's day. It was nice to see her again after a year and half! This is a photo of yummy, yummy food prepared by my aunt Jyunko and my grandma Kayako.

(Japanese) お正月には内子にある祖母の家に行きました。久しぶりに祖母に会えて嬉しかったです。この写真は純子伯母とカヤ子おばあちゃんによって用意されたおいしいおご馳走たち。

My uncle Yoshihisa roasting shrimps on a Shichirin. (Do you want to know what Shchirin is? Click here.) He is watching and watching.

(Japanese) えびを七輪の上で焼く良久伯父(私の父の兄)。ちゃんと見てくれています。

We flew a kite, too. It was fun although it was cold outside. (It snowed a little bit that day.) This is uncle Yoshihisa enjoying himself as if he is a little boy :-)

(Japanese) みんなで凧あげもしましたよ。少し雪が降ったので寒かったですけど楽しかったです。またまた良久伯父の登場。「童心に返り凧あげを楽しむ伯父」の図。すてきでしょ?