- - - 5/27/2018 - - -

Trip to Ise

Filed under: — Andy @ 5:52 am

I finally took the family to Ise in Mie prefecture for a long weekend. Ise along with Ise Shrine is one of the more famous Japan travel destinations that I had not yet been to. The Ise Grand Shrine is considered the most sacred Shintō shrine in Japan, and along with the top of Mt Fuji is considered a must visit sometime in your lifetime place. Of course we did many of the other activities in the area and made sure to eat all the famous foods:

We took the shinkansen and express trains there and back

Purification stream of the inner shrine

At the inner shrine. There are always lots of people visiting.

The Uji Bridge

The famous shopping street in front of the shrine. There were lots of traditional shops and foods, and we saw a Taiko performance.

Eating ‘Akafuku’ the famous Japanese sweet of the area

Eating the local style Ise Udon

For dinner we had the local style ‘TekoneSushi’

At the fairly impressive Toba Sea-Folk Museum

Melina loved playing in the submarine

Eating Unagi for lunch

Taking a boat ride around Ago bay, famous for Japanese Perl cultivation

A quick stop at a park for slides, running around, and ice cream

We hiked up to the overlook of the bay at Yokoyama

Eating Matsuzaka beef (up there on the rankings with Kobe beef) for dinner along with other things Melina likes.

‘Okayu’ at the outer shrine for breakfast

Finally was Melina’s favorite part of the trip; Toba Aquarium. She got to see and touch a whole lot of sea animals, and a snake. It was my first time to pet a walrus as well.

- - - 4/8/2018 - - -

Easter Dinner 2018

Filed under: — Andy @ 7:33 am

This years Easter dinner was another success. I made a big ham, Easter breads, and the traditional Polish Easter soup. Other people in my house made other foods and desserts as well.

- - - 3/4/2018 - - -

Turkish Restaurant

Filed under: — Andy @ 7:07 am

A bunch of people from my house went out to a Turkish restaurant. The food was good, they had traditional Turkish clothing you could put on, and there was a giant stuffed camel that Melina liked to climb on.

- - - 2/17/2018 - - -

Melina is 3! Cakes

Filed under: — Andy @ 4:02 am

For Melina’s 3rd birthday, both Suzuna and I made birthday cakes. She made a healthy macrobiotic strawberry cake, and I made a dairy-free American style strawberry cake. Melina just ate the strawberries off both cakes.

- - - 2/3/2018 - - -

Setsubun Sushi 2018

Filed under: — Andy @ 3:53 am

Everyone enjoyed this years Setsubun sushi and bean throwing party again this year. The lucky direction was south-south-south-east and Melina was able to eat a whole sushi roll all by herself.

- - - 1/18/2018 - - -

Suzuna’s Bday French Dinner 4

Filed under: — Andy @ 10:59 pm

Same French restaurant for Suzuna’s birthday again this year.
Last Year
Last Last Year
Last Last Last Year

- - - 11/25/2017 - - -

Thanksgiving 2017

Filed under: — Andy @ 3:48 am

Every year my Thanksgiving parties get better and better, or so I like to think so. Im getting better at cooking the Thanksgiving essentials and adding more variety every time. Yet again, I was too busy cooking, cutting, and talking to take many good pictures of the party.

- - - 3/19/2017 - - -

Making Miso

Filed under: — Andy @ 12:08 am

Melina and Suzuna running a homemade Miso workshop.


rice, salt, and miso yeast

soy beans



making miso balls

putting them into the drum for a year to ferment into miso

- - - 1/20/2017 - - -

Suzuna’s Bday French Dinner 3

Filed under: — Andy @ 10:15 pm

Same French restaurant for Suzuna’s birthday again this year.
Last Year
Last Last Year

- - - 1/18/2017 - - -

Suzuna’s Bday Cake

Filed under: — Andy @ 10:13 pm

Suzuna requested a millefiori cake for her birthday, which I then did my best to try to make..