Sunday Afternoon 12/27/2015

Mt. Fuji shopping bag and Japanese small plates.

My Mt. Fuji shopping bag and Japanese small plates. The traditional motifs on the plates are: rice, Mt. Fuji, cherry blossom, gourd and waves.

The last Sunday of 2015 . . . .

I’m currently suffering from complete and total grandchild withdrawal, and feeling incredibly sad that it will be a long while before we see our grandson again. I had the absolute best time with him while our son and family were vacationing on Kaua’i, and saying good-bye to all of them late Friday night was very difficult (they left early yesterday morning for three days on Oahu). Brett and I are scheduled to go to Japan again in 2019, but the wheels are already turning in my head to figure out if we can fit in an earlier visit.

And, I’m steeling myself for Meiling’s departure on Tuesday, when she heads back to Oregon. I have loved having her home these past two week, but it will be another year before she comes back to Hawai’i. Between school and work she doesn’t think she’ll have a chance to get away until then. She’s happy in Oregon though, and doing well on her own, and I can’t ask for more than that. I am keeping my fingers crossed that I will be able to squeeze in a trip to see her when I take WenYu to college next fall.

Otherwise, this Sunday I am:

  • Reading: I’m about two-thirds of the way through The Martian and am thoroughly enjoying it. There’s lots of science and mechanical stuff to keep up with, but it’s a gripping story.
  • Listening to: It’s a bit noisier than usual around here this morning: the girls are watching a favorite TV show (Jane the Virgin), the washing machine is running, and lawnmowers are going outside. I can still hear plenty of birds singing though!
  • Watching: Brett and I are back again to the M&Ms; we still have a few more to go in each series. Murdoch Mysteries seem to be getting sillier though, but we are enjoying the “darker” turn to Midsomer Murders. We alternate between them each day (tonight will be Murdoch Mysteries).
  • Cooking/baking: I cooked a lot while everyone was here, but we have managed to finish the leftovers (a couple of days ago I wasn’t sure we could). I’m still trying to fit in a few of Meiling’s favorites before she goes though. Tonight’s dinner is butternut squash ravioli with homemade Alfredo sauce, along with roasted zucchini and garlic bread. Tomorrow night will be stir-fried pork with peppers and chili shrimp. There’s absolutely no baking going on – we still have w-a-y too many sweets left over from Christmas.
  • Happy I accomplished last week: Our family Christmas was a smashing success, and a whole lot of fun! Pulling it off involved a lot of work, but it was happy work, and I’d take it on again in a heartbeat.
  • Looking forward to next week: A new year! I almost can’t believe 2016 will be here in less than a week. I am also looking forward to putting away the Christmas stuff in the next few days and getting the house straightened and cleaned for the new year. While we’ve all enjoyed having the tree up, it does take up a bit of room so we’ll be glad to get the space back. Brett and I will get our big monthly Costco shop done sometime during the week as well, although we are very well stocked and won’t need to buy much this time. I am not looking forward to Meiling’s departure on Tuesday evening.
  • Grateful for: I am so thankful that our family had the opportunity to spend time together this year. It’s a hard thing for all of us to coordinate, with our son in Japan and Meiling on the mainland, so when it happens it’s a wonderful thing. We all enjoy each other’s company so much, and the kids all get along so well with each other. Our grandson is an absolute delight, and Brett and I have the best daughter-in-law in the world.
  • Bonus question: What was your favorite Christmas gift? Besides having the whole family together? I didn’t much (thank goodness!) but the things I received were lovely and useful – I can’t pick a favorite. My son and daughter-in-law gave me a set of beautiful Japanese small plates and a canvas Mt. Fuji shopping bag that I saw last spring and had admired. The girls made me a personalized phone case with photos of everyone in our family – I love it!! I didn’t get that Amazon card for books, but I did get a Starbucks card!

I hope besides enjoying your Sunday, that you are able to still savor the holiday, and are looking forward to the new year as well! I’d love to hear about your gifts, etc. in the comments!

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6 thoughts on “Sunday Afternoon 12/27/2015

  1. Vesta says:

    Sounds like you hada wonderful time with your family. So happy you could all be together.

    My two big gifts – a crockpot with timer (will be wonderful to come home to a meal already cooked) and new silverware (the set I had was given to me by my sister35 years ago).

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    • Laura says:

      What kind of crockpot did you get? Mine is a Cuisinart – it has a timer and warmer as well and I love it!

      My old cutlery came from redeeming coupons off Betty Crocker products! I was so thrilled when I got a new set a few years ago, so I can imagine your happiness with your new set.

      Sounds like you had a wonderful holiday too!

      Like

  2. Libby says:

    2019 is waaaayyy too long to wait for the next trip to Japan! Can you earn enough Swagbucks to pay for ticket?…..you know since you love goals ; )

    I’m still recovering from TKR surgery so Christmas here was very quiet. The best part was watching my 18 y.o. son’s face as he opened presents – his big present was a down comforter, which he LOVES.

    My best present was $$ from my parents. I am using this to start my 2016 travel fund. Hoping to go to France….maybe explore the southwest region near the Pyrenees, a section I have not visited before.

    This sounds as if it was an incredibly special Christmas for your family. I’m so happy for you.

    Like

    • Laura says:

      Our Christmas was incredibly special – so glad we got to do this (and of course am wishing we could do it more often).

      Love that you’re putting your Christmas cash into a travel fund, and France sounds like a worthy goal :-)!

      We’ll be doing Swaybacks for Christmas gifts again next year (wish I could get a plane ticket that way!). Brett and I are thinking we can pull off a Spring Break 2017 trip to Japan. Because he’s going we can stay at the New Sanno Hotel (military, but retired service member must accompany all dependents) which will save us a bundle. It’s located just a 10-minute walk from our son’s home.

      Best wishes for continued healing!!

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