Sunday, February 28, 2010

Earthquakes, Typhoons and Tsunamis, oh my!

I've never experienced a tsunami warning before. We're far enough in land that a massive wave wouldn't effect us at all, but still........we're watching the news reports of all the tsunami preparations that are going on, definitely a different experience.

The Tokyo marathon is in full swing right now (Ganbatte Malcolm!), and all those runners are crossing the finish line on Tokyo Bay, which is right smack in the middle of the tsunami warning zone

Thursday, February 25, 2010


We live in the Kanto region of Japan, an area made up of seven prefectures, we live in Tokyo. Within the Kanto region there is a core group of about 11 English speaking high schools, 3 are American schools on U.S. military installations, and the others are international schools in the Tokyo and Yokohama areas like American School in Japan, Christian Academy in Japan, Int'l School of the Sacred Heart and Yokohama Int'l School.

Our sports teams all compete against each other throughout the year (and against other English speaking schools throughout Japan and the Pacific) and the kids get pretty friendly playing together over the course of several years, even though they're competitors, they're definitely very friendly rivals. It's so incredibly different from what goes on in the U.S., where kids have been actually KILLED over out-of-control high school rivalries! It's pretty awesome seeing so many kids of so many different nationalities cheering each other on at these different events, and I've met some great people from all over the world as we've watched our kids run at cross country and track meets over the last three seasons, and Gabi hangs w/ kids from all these schools at basketball and football games during her off seasons.

Next month there are two "super" events planned, bringing together a bunch of Kanto schools for some fun. There's going to be an "American" football game, sort of an All Star team made up of players from the American/Int'l schools, playing against a Japanese high school team. And there's a "Kanto Plains Su-pa Dance" being held at one of the Tokyo schools, open to all the high school students of the American/Int'l schools. How cool is that? Our school will take buses to both events. Gabi has already bought her ticket for the Super Dance (my offer to chaperon was met w/ a resounding VETO), and we're all planning to go the football game in Kawasaki (though I've already been instructed that I will not be permitted to sit in the Students' section). ** I could be wrong, but I'm guessing the religious schools didn't include: "CLOTHES MUST STAY ON!" in their event guidelines. If not, should I warn my parent-friends from the other schools that our adminstration felt it necessary to include it in ours?**

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Happy Birthday...... my beautiful boy. I love you so much!!!!! Proper post w/ pix coming soon!

Friday, February 12, 2010

A little something to smile about....

I'm going to keep the post for O's dad a the top (just FYI, not the "something to smile about")

Some of you may or may not know that Meg's dad, my ex-husband Jason, is deployed to Afghanistan. His team is reeeeaaaalllly far forward with a bunch of Army guys at a tiny, very remote post. Jay is a member of the Air Force's Rapid Engineer Deployable Heavy Operational Repair Squadron Engineers (
Red Horse ), which is a team of construction guys that basically build new military bases, so they're building a camp now, constructing a post office, chapel, dining hall, etc. It's a pretty tough place, when they arrived they had only the most basic, bare necessities, sleeping in tents, eating MRE's, no internet and only hit-or-miss field satellite phones. They've been working hard and the buildings are slowly coming up.

Back in December one of the guys stumbled on some puppies in a cave w/ no mama dog in site, click below for the full story and updates. The pups were gathered up and brought to the camp, and as you'd expect, everyone fell in love with the little mongrels, and now they've launched a campaign to bring them all to the U.S.

Rescue the Red Horse Pups

In the very top/first pic, Jason is on the far left, sitting in the folding chair w/ sunglasses on.

Jay is a huge dog lover, he's got three pups back home in FL that he really misses and having these little girlies (and guy) in the camp has done so much to lift the morale of all the guys and helped so much to make each day a little easier to get through as they count down the days until they can come home.

Every e-mail Meg gets from her dad has some mention of the dogs, and now she's head-over-heels and begs regularly to adopt one.

If you're so inclined, please donate a little bit to the fund that's been set up to rescue these puppies that have come to mean so much to not only the Red Horse guys, but their grateful families as well.

***Although the blog refers to the Pennsylvania National Guard Red Horse team, they're actually a mixed team from several bases, including Hurlburt Field in Ft. Walton Beach, FL