Saturday, October 29, 2011

Wonderful Shades

Another working week has passed. Our life here was good and peaceful, without any eventful thing or very bad news occuring (thank God). I was watching a Jody Foster's movie awhile ago, "The Brave One" - when one scene at the start of the movie caught my attention and imagine how dull life would be if we only saw things in black and white. She was on the phone with her lover (they're supposed to be getting married) telling him how their invite would look like, him saying that it will be a nice cream invite and Jody Foster corrected him that it's not cream but vanilla.

Isn't that amazing how we (Women), yes, only us!... know the difference between off-white, beige, cream, vanilla, ivory and champagne? It's a gift i think that men will never understand about us.

I think it is our greater sensitivity that enables us to find magic within the ordinary. Or maybe it's our sense of style (whatever it is) and innate creativity. Or it could be that we know how much more pleasure we can get in having three colorful purses, shoes and sweaters, instead of just one white one! so womanly! - - - anyone not guilty on this? (^^;) lol

Whatever it is, it only means one thing. Never ever under estimate a woman's creativity, ability and sensitivity. It is with all these that makes us an amazing human being!

"Colors answer feeling in men; shapes answer thought; and motion answers will."
---- author unknown

"Life is like a rainbow, you need both the sun and the rain, to make its colors appear."
(Photo was taken by myself during our last summer trip in Yamanashi-prefecture. The lake Kawaguchiko is beautiful even on a very cloudy day!)

"In order to have friendship you must look past the colors to the soul, because within the soul lies a 'rainbow' of many colors."
(You know it's already the start of the rainy season [梅雨入り] here in Japan, when you see this 'Ajisai-あじさい' flowers blooming everywhere in the country. My Aunt back home said, we call this flower 'Milflores' in the Philippines, or million a bundle, how exotic! Pic. was taken by me, June 8, 2011 from our garden.)

[credit: photo of the crayons is owned by grungebarbie87 of photobucket]

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

As it comes. . .

Over the years, I've come to learn to enjoy life as it comes, in the precious moments of each day. Living any little success and fulfillment here and now, and not in some distant, imagined future.

While others set up themselves as a hostage to their own circumstances and inventory of material possessions, I chose to live richly and fully no matter what. Making joyful and thankful use of whatever I have, wherever I am, big and small, relevant or not.

I come to learn to pay no attention to those who scream at me that in order to be happy, you must have these things or that experience or this somebody. I come to learn to ignore them, and simply choose to be happy by my own interpretation of happiness all around me.

Life is good.

Life is rich.

Life is joyful.

Life is rewarding.

Life is fulfilling.

\(^_^)/ Happy Wednesday y'all!

Will end today's post with a favorite quote on contentment:

"It is not the place, nor the condition, but the mind alone that can make anyone happy or miserable." -Roger L'Estrange

My secret of a happy life isn't burried in a treasure chest... it lies within my heart.

Loving Ones in the Philippines (my family back home)... I so miss them. (--;) :(

Children are a reflection of who you are, be proud of them!

The Little things... The Little life... No, They aren't Little. (^з^)-☆ (on the left side of the photo are my parents, my eldest daughter Kaina between them, on the right side is my elder sister Susie, nephew Paolo, and niece Sydney)

"You gave me a reason for my being, and I love what I'm feeling."
(hubby and i, during our family's Summer Camp in Tochigi-prefecture, Aug. 1 - 3, 2011.)

Friday, October 14, 2011

Test blog from my mobile

Howdy! I'm just done setting my Android HTC Sense for Blogger mobile blogging. Yip'pee!!! :D I've been meaning to do this since I got the unit last May... and this is a test and my first post from my cp. I hope it goes in, (^_^ゞ including the 2 attachments.

The 1st pic. was taken in Hakodate, Hokkaido last week, while going up Mount Essan we saw this sign and took a pic., I'll blog about our Hokkaido visit soon. :) The 2nd pic. is something I'm enjoying at the moment while watching the Gymnastics Men's All - Around World Championship on TV live from Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium. Ganbarre Uchimura Kohei (⌒0⌒)/~~, he is the current and 2-time World Champion in Men's All-Around Artistic Gymnastics and the Silver Medalist in the last Beijing Olympics, like UCHIMURA, I'm also cheering for Yamamura Koji, who is another contender for the medals . Ganbarou, 美しい 日本 体操!!! \(^o^)/

Hey wait, so much about what I'm watching on TV now, let's go back to the 2nd pic. heheh _(^^;)ゞ I got excited for awhile there, I'm sorry.(-_-;) I'd like to share you all this coconut milk TAPIOCA dessert drink which is my current favorite, among the new desserts that are on sale in the market now. The reason why I'm so fond of this 'sweet' is because it reminds me so much of home. The main ingredient is coconut, now we Filipinos love coconut a lot! Also aside from, coconut, cream and milk, it also contains TAPIOCA which we call 'SAGO' in the Philippines. Oh, how I've missed these yum-yum stuffs! But when Royal Sweets introduced this drink desserts to the market this summer, I was so delighted! The moment I first took a sip, I was already aware of this strange, good, familiar taste, very nostalgic. It's very delicious and tastes so much like our 'sago and buko juice' back home, only it was like the two were combined into one great product (^。^)y-~ that I just have the feeling this dessert would click more to us filipino residents here.;) All my beloved 'Pinay' and 'Pinoy' friends if you haven't tried it yet, try getting it on your next grocery shopping. You could also buy it in any of their Convenience stores and it's lined up with all the other drink desserts they have here. Just two coins of wonderful joy if you may call it, very affordable. I recommend Coconut Milk Tapioca and hope that they will make many more of this kind in the future. I will be sharing more unique japanese sweets here next time. . .

I wish y'all readers another great coming weekend!!! \(^_^)/ (^з^)-☆

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Beautiful Autumn in Japan

Vibrant Colours of Red, Gold, and Orange everywhere! Yes, one of my most awaited time has officially started ~ FALL in Japan, my favourite season of all!

Autumn 'Koyo' (foliage) in Kyoto, Japan

Autumn is indeed a beautiful time of the year. And in Japan it really is!  For this country is partly known for its unique, gorgeously balanced  'four-season' climate. Each season is distinct and has its own unique character. In contrast to some beliefs of other none-japanese residents Autumn here, like their Spring is very much anticipated and enjoyed by in fact - all ages. While it's true that Spring in Japan is the time and season which symbolizes new beginning, new birth, new life, cherry blossoms, start of the school year, and fresh graduates joining companies. Autumn for us, on the other hand is the perfect season for the great outdoors; delicious, seasonal gourmet; harvesting of crops; trips and family outings; and catching up on neglected healthy activities i.e. exercising, walking and all. Though some may find Autumn season a bit depressing as the cold Winter is approaching, people here are probably more than glad to bid goodbye to the hot, sticky days brought by the Summer. Humidity in Japan during the Summer months are usually high, so muggy and not that tolerable, even for someone like me- who originally came from the tropics.:) Starting late September when the rainy, typhoon days are almost over, it gets really, really nice here!

Wonderful Shades of Autumn even along the ordinary, residential areas.

AUTUMN in Japan means lots of wonderful things! Like any Japanese that is already fond of, about the Autumn, here are some that I enjoy :

* The shades and colour of Nature. Foliage here is really Lovely and Gorgeous! Breathtaking sight of the leaves, specially their 'MOMIJI' also known as 'maple leaves' are a sure heaven treat to the eyes.  :)

* The cool, breezy air that will greet you as you open your windows each fall morning and the clear, crisp weather at daytime (no more need for air conditioners! :D).

* The harvest of vegetables, fruits and rice. Japan boasts one of, if not  the best quality Rice produce in the world, I tell you! :)

* Some starts to stock up foods for the arriving Winter. Powdered chocolate drink in cans and in jars can be seen on sale in mostly every stores and supermarkets.

* Autumn, chic, cool clothes you'll see on every fashion magazines and displayed on almost any apparel store windows here. (this one I think tickles my interest the most!)  ahihih ;-) *giggles*

* 'SANMA' (Pacific Saury or Mackerel Pike Fish) freshly grilled, better known as 'YAKI SANMA'  here is back on the menus again both at home - on dinner tables, and in most restaurants and shokudo (eateries).

* Convenience stores are putting up 'Aki Menus' / Autumn Menus such as :
'NIKUMAN' (hot dim suns); 'ODEN' (a Japanese winter dish, consisting of a fine, mild broth with several ingredients in it, toppled with mustard paste for extra flavoring enjoyment, very affordable and served hot which is great for the cold months!);
and other authentic, hot Japanese beverages in the pantry. (bring on the atsukan and sake!)

* The very expensive yet they say the most tastiest among the varieties of wild mushrooms here. It's called 'MATSUTAKE' , and are at peak starting early October. Usually a great choice for extra-special Autumn occasions.

* Grade school students rehearsing for their own respective, annual, athletic event in their schools -  'UNDOKAI' which are normally held during the month of October.

* The Elderly suddenly waking up a little earlier, doing their usual walk, stroll and yogas. And even the not-so-old folks jogging along the neighbourhood - all sum up together to something - for everyone to enjoy that is, Autumn!

焼き秋刀魚 (さんま)or Grilled Sanma Autumn Fish with a special limited-edition Autumn beer from 'Kirin Breweries'.
"ODEN"  (おでん)

"YAKI SANMA" - grilled autumn Mackerel Pike fish is a regular sight on dinning tables during the Autumn months.

Matsutake Mushroom Dish or  松茸料理

Japanese-arrange versions of the Chinese Dim Suns known here as 肉まん(meat dim sun)  and  あんまん(black sweet bean curd dim sun)

運動会 * うんどうかい * UNDOUKAI ~  School Athletic day or Sports Fest held annually in every school in Japan during the Autumn.

I have been living here for almost 20 years now yet their Fall season never fails to amaze me. Just too many good things to look forward here every Fall!! :)  Pardon me for mentioning it again but as I said earlier, Autumn is a great, terrific time to go on trips and sightseeing in Japan. Striking Autumn colours, mild temperatures and clear days make Fall my most favourite season of the year! The viewing of  foliage has been already a popular activity in Japan since many decades ago. Today, the spectacular autumn leaves draw large numbers of crowds, both the locals and tourists, to 'famous koyo spots'  both in the mountains and in the cities. Me and my family have visited many of these 'koyo spots' each and every Fall for the last few years. I feel so blessed and lucky being able to see these wonderful 'gift' of the Great Almighty. You see, in our country, where I was born and raised, we only have two seasons, the 'wet and the dry' season, either always rainy or sunny. So you bet how much thrilled I am to witness foliage every year. And for that I am very grateful.....

Lovely shades of yellow Gin'nan Trees (銀杏) , along the Kiyosumi River, Tokyo
These Gin'nan or Ichou Trees are official symbols of the city of Tokyo.
Fall with backdrop of the mighty, biggest peak in Japan, Mount Fuji, Shizuoka-prefecture side. 

Colorful Leaves (koyo) are to the Japanese AUTUMN, what Cherry Blossoms are to SPRING.

Below are some more Autumn photos we had taken from our Fall trip in Mount Takao, the previous year... Hope y'all will enjoy them. :)

Son And I enjoying the foliage over at Mount Takao, Fall 2010.

Another pose from us in front of the 'Trick Art Museum' signs on the way up farther to the top of Mount Takao, Tokyo.

My husband's back silhouette while pushing our youngest child's stroller, on the way up to the steeply trails of Mount  Takao, late October of the year 2010.

Amazing colours of the trees up there! I took this picture of hubby and daughter Yuuna's back image  as we went up and reached this mid-section of  Mt. Takao via only hiking. We were torn between taking the cable cars or riding the lifts. Eventually ensuring the kids safety, we opted to ride and took the mini train-like cable cars from this mid-section of Kiyotaki station - to the almost top of Mount Takao - Oyama station.... 

My Lovelies with their Papa on top of the scenic peak of Mount Takao. Son enjoyed this part of the climb and hike. Especially from the cable car ride - to the telescope viewing of the city of Tokyo from this side's top of the mountain. Daughter Yuuna though was already quite tired and sleepy here.....

The urban metropolis of Tokyo from my lenses, taken from one of the top-side section of Mount Takao.

Yup, you noticed it right! This is my blog title banner photo. :D  One of my favourite among the many Fall photos I've  taken over the years.... From Mount Takao, Hachioji TOKYO /  高尾山、八王子市東京都

I wish Y'all (those who live in the JST zone especially) an Awesome, Lovely Autumn 2011 !!!
Happy Trails! ~~~

"For a man, autumn is a time of harvest, of gathering together. For nature, it is a time of sowing, of scattering abroad."  
    ____ Edwin Way Teale

Credits: Photos used in this post came from Wikipedia; ただ写真ダウンロード; and Free Photos Japan Gourmet, except for the last 7 photos which are my personal property files.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Don't Let It Spoil Your Day

If someone should hurt you,

And say a thing unkind;

Remember that I write to you,

And keep these thoughts in mind.

For everyone that makes you cry

there are three to make you smile;

And a smile will last a long, long time,

but a tear just a little while.

Don't let someone who hates the world

cause you to hate it too,

Behind the clouds is a golden sun,

And a sky that's full of blue.

If someone said a thing that's cruel,

Don't let it get to you;

Your achievements are greatly numbered,

And your faults are very few.

So if a certain person should act a certain way,

Think of those who Love you.

And Don't let it spoil your day!