Feb. 5th, 2011 11:41 pm
My nails are pretty and glittery. All is well with the world. ^_^

More or less. I have a stupid cold sore (after having had one a week ago, no less!), and my throat is kind of doing a teasing "I may be getting sorer, or I may be not, you'll find out tomorrow!" thing. I don't care, I'm still going out to eat. So there!

This morning I had a laser hair removal appointment. When I arrived, the girl said, "So it's lower legs and the backs of your hands today, right?" Uh, no. I was certain that I'd only booked for my legs, but I was going to ask if they could do my underarms as well, so it all worked out. This is the second time something like this has happened, actually. The first time I got my legs done, I think it was, for some reason they had me down for lower legs and forearms. Either the person I talked to when I made my reservation misunderstood me or made a mistake entering the appointment, or they were sneakily trying to sell me something and were too polite to say, "Girl, your arms are HAIRY!" Sorry, I'm not yet at the point where I'm going to worry about my arm hair. It's still blonde, and the rest of me is enough of a pain as it is.

I spent the afternoon at the dance studio. I took two classes today: Pilates (only 70 minutes) and a regular ballet class. Pilates was nice; I'd like to try to go more often. Ballet had its usual fail!moments and win!moments -- my glissades pretty awful, but I got some nice height on my travelling jumps, and my double pirouettes were not bad. I only wish Inui-sensei would be better at having us do the left side as much as the right. When we do stuff from the corner, we always start going right, and often he'll have us do it again, and then only once from the left. I'm actually naturally better at leading with the left foot, though you wouldn't really be able to tell now, since my right foot gets twice as much practice. Good for my right, not so good for my left.

Thanks to Hannah's suggestion (fashion guru that she is), I found a pair of jean short shorts. I won't wear them the way they're meant to be worn (i.e. cuffed) because that does my thighs no favours, but they're still cute. Since they're cut for a [bumless] Japanese figure, they have the fascinating effect of making me look like I nearly lack an ass myself (which is certainly not the case!), but that's by pushing most of the mass up. Hello, love handles! You haven't been this generous since I was many kilos heavier. It's all good, though; these are the lowest of low rises I've ever owned, so I need to wear long tops over them anyway. Besides, I'm expecting the shorts to stretch a bit, so I won't be assless for long. :3 Also, I doubt I'll wear them with the black over-the-knee socks they came with (see: I don't have pretty Japanese legs), but the socks will definitely be worn... with something else.

Gah, speaking of clothes, I need to find something to wear for my school's graduation ceremony. The only dressy thing I own is what I wore on last year's "congratulation day", as the kids keep calling it!

Last night I took myself out on a date and had lovely Italian food, accompanied by wine and the most amazing garlic bread in the world. I o-kawaried it. Almonds in the butter, omg amazing. *___* The walnuts not so much, but I only found one largish chunk of that, so it's okay. So yeah, I think their claim of "best garlic bread in Japan" is justified.
In all probability, as soon as my recital is over, I'll fall into a coma of the cold/flu/exhaustion variety. I can taste it already...

Here are today's memes, in the interest of staying abreast of things.

Japanese fashion trends )

Another moment )
I feel I should preface this post with a warning that I have had some extremely uncharacteristic moods lately. Namely bad ones, despairing ones, foul ones... you get the picture. Partly it's hormones (what the hell, I'm nearly 30 and for the first time experiencing typically female mood swings, why NOW?!), partly it's other stuff, but at least this post will get happier toward the end?

Originally, I wanted to reprise last night's meal, but with the way I was feeling when I left the ballet studio, I [rightly] figured wine was the last thing my fragile emotions needed, so I got some sushi from the department store instead. It's a step up from grocery store sushi, I guess? XD;

Anyway... Here's me whining about my body and ballet. )

I watched some movies recently! If you care about spoilers, don't click.

Team America World Police )

Lucky Brand Refrigerator )

Animals Are Beautiful People )

Happy Together )

And here are the daily memes:

It's hard, so hard )

What I wore today )

I feel slightly better now, though I wish I could take a week off work and... I don't know, sleep, or try to feel less screwed up about things.
Rarely do I remember dreams with any type of narrative, because I usually remember the ones I have between waking up the first time, falling into a doze and waking up again, so they're not dreams that usually make much sense. This morning, however, I woke up from the dream itself, before my alarm.

I was in a city, probably somewhere in western or northern Europe (though it could have been Boston, for all I know -- I've never been there), and it was winter. I was sort of but not really dating an older man (or rather I was his protégée of sorts, something along those lines), and at one point I thought to myself, "Oh great, it's like G all over again!" Though to be fair, G wasn't really old, though he was nearly 8 years older than I am. Anyway, this guy was in his late 50s, a distinguished-looking older gentleman. I think he might have been Russian. He was taking me to a gathering of some friends of his, and it was to be a high society type thing, in a gorgeously appointed old apartment (for some reason I knew what the apartment looked like). I had a dress suitable for the occasion, but had no shoes, as I had been going about town in my winter boots -- obviously, I couldn't wear those into the apartment!

The hotel or pension I was staying at had a maid who had an interesting reputation; she would trade for things, and could get you pretty much anything you wanted. She wasn't a thief, exactly, though her dealings were apparently sometimes shady. Someone knew about my shoe situation, and must have told her about it, because she showed up in my room the next day saying she'd get me some shoes. Then she started putting the moves on me, and there was definitely some rolling around on the bed.

Later on, I found a pair of shoes in my room, and assumed they were from her. However, I was told afterward that they were actually from the older man, and that he'd come to give them to me, but left without seeing me. Maybe he'd seen me with the maid? I felt really bad about it, because I knew it must have hurt him terribly, but at the same time, we hadn't been officially together or had a formal agreement or anything. Still, I prepared to go to the gathering with him.

That's when I woke up.

Hah, all this is just to try to make up for the really quick job I did of writing yesterday. To be fair, I worked all day, then went to ballet class, and collapsed onto my futon as soon as I got home.

Set yourself apart )

What I wore )


Jul. 17th, 2010 10:17 am
First up, some announcements:

Fireworks! Here is what's going on in Tokyo this summer. I can't do anything between the 31st of July and the 15th of August, but any takers for some of the other ones, maybe on the 29th? *hopeful*

Birthday! My birthday is the 17th of August, but I'll be working that day, and will have a ballet class afterward, so there will be no partying that day. However, I would like to get to the Tamagawa Fireworks on the 21st (Saturday). Those are my favourite fireworks (after the Edogawa ones, which are happening while I'm away), so I hope they're just as good this year!

Birthday, Take Two! Apart from the fireworks, I'd like to have my birthday celebration on the 29th of August (Sunday). So far, my idea is to have Greek food (or possibly Turkish or Moroccan, depending on what restaurants are to be found), and also purikura and maybe something else. Reserve that date for me, please! ^_^

Desserts! To reward ourselves for sticker sheets completed, Eda and I will be hitting up that fabulous dessert place in Ginza on the 24th of this month, probably around 6:30. Who wants to join us? :D

Heat )

Girl, I want to make you sweat )

Fruity individuals )

Smile if... )

Counting the days )

Wow, getting up early on weekends is great, it's only a bit after 10 and I feel I've done so much! Well, I haven't actually done much, it's just that I've gotten my daily tooling around the internet mostly done. Still, I've done laundry, am uploading photos for my next Travelpod post*, and last night I got fabric out for a (few) new project(s). Because I really need to start new things, when I'm in the middle of a bunch of others.

All right, time to get some sewing done, then I need to go over my budget (the next few months are going to be tight -__-;;;), then I'm going to see U-KISS in Nakano! Because Eda is awesome and got us tickets. <3

* Picture #666 from The Great Train Adventure is of... the giant reclining Buddha in Shimabara. I giggled.

ETA: Here's what Tabitha thinks of the heat. You can't make me move )
Today was nice. Relaxing, fun, and the weather turned out better than expected!

To celebrate Canamerica Day, I headed out to Chiba's Edogawa Pool Garden with Kimberly, Jamie, Eda, Emily and Tiffany. Upon arrival, we were shocked to find the place deserted. Well, not deserted, but compared to the other times I'd been, there was barely a soul in sight -- in fact, we had l'embarras du choix when it came to choosing a place beneath the awnings (we'd always had to set up camp somewhere around the edge of the park, in the hot sun, the other times I'd been). Even waiting in line for the slide took only a fraction of the usual time! I'm guessing people stayed away because the sky looked threatening, but though the weather started out overcast, which was nice because it wasn't too hot, the sun eventually came out with a vengeance. I played it extra safe and reapplied sunscreen more than once, and am happy to report myself free of sunburn. My eyes are a bit tired from being out in the bright light most of the day, but that's to be expected.

Bobbing around in the lazy river was nice and relaxing, and it was overall a great day, except for the service at El Torito, which was slow and just... I thought it was standard policy to check everyone's glass of water when someone asks for more, but not according to that one waitress, it seems! At least the other girl offered us all refills when someone asked. But then she forgot to give Jamie's order to the kitchen staff... *rolls eyes*

Eda and I topped the triple challenge at Baskin Robbins, sharing a coconut/raspberry-chocolate/gay tropical island fruit cup. It was yummy. ^_^

Back in Kichijouji, it was raining, so Kimberly and I poked around Yuzawaya for a few minutes while waiting for the bus. I hadn't been to the new location yet, if you can believe it! I wound up finding ballet-themed stickers, because that's what it takes to get me to do my stretching every day. My reward for a month of daily stretching will be a new leotard (which I desperately need), and the following month it will be some new ballet slippers. With split soles, this time! :D

This means I now have about... oh, 800 stickers to use.


On the bright side, on another floor at OIOI I spotted a couple of really cute bathing suits, and I'm thinking one of those can be my reward for completing my first study sticker sheet, because being able to communicate with people in China isn't enough of a reward. XD

One of the bathing suits is actually two bikinis that you can wear together. Yes, because layer bathing suits is what's in, now. Oh, Japan, what will you think of next?!
Wow, I'd forgotten how small kids are. It's one thing to work with them each day and hold them; it's quite another to make dance costumes for them. So. Damn. Tiny. (We're having Culture Day on Friday, and as I'm in charge of the ballet troupe, I thought I'd make little vests for the boys and skirts for the girls. We're dancing to The Nutcracker. We've also got a hula group and a hip-hop group. They're all going to be so cute. <3)

Kids being kids )

In news unrelated to kids, I feel I've been rather unproductive today. Though I did go to a ballet class, then to the travel agency to hand over my passport so they can take care of getting me a Chinese visa (less troublesome than going myself, though more expensive), then went and bought some clothes even though I'd told myself I wouldn't. At least I got a whole outfit? XD;

Oh, well. Tomorrow shall be a Day of Sewery, so I'll be able to at least finish a few things, and add a few more stickers to my sewing page.

Speaking of which... Check this out! )
I've been sewing! I started a dress the day before yesterday, worked on it last night, and am now in the home stretch. The only problem is... I can't make up my mind about the lace! Do I want it just along the top? Do I want it to continue up the straps and across the back? Should I just not use it? Argh.

Of course, the project is taking more time than I originally estimated, but isn't that always the case? Especially since I'm doing it properly, because I don't want to end up with a half-assed job that I won't want to wear. Actually, that's the reason I'm debating the lace, because I don't want to decide, once it's all done, that it's too froofy for me. Even though it's really simple lace edging, and it's black, so it's hardly super girly.

On the bright side, once the lace debate has been resolved, all that's left to do is insert the zipper. Invisible zipper ftw! Mwahahaha...

Later (or possibly tomorrow), a review of Dream Live 7th, which was absolutely awesome, and worth going to twice. ^o^
This probably won't make much sense to anyone but those concerned (i.e. myself and my brothers) but I want to post this just so I don't forget about it, because I just split my sides laughing.

There's been this running joke for years about my feet being perfectly round. It originated (I think?) when we were watching Fushigi Yuugi together -- so that would be about 10 years ago! -- and my brothers thought the close-up of Chiriko's foot with his seishi symbol was hilarious, and somehow this led to them accusing me of having spherical feet. Anytime is a good time to bring this up, so now that we're in the initial stages of planning our annual family trip, the following exchange appeared in my inbox:

B2 writes:

Pending receipt of your answer to this inquiry, please be advised that effective January 1st, 2010, all passengers boarding international flights with feet deemed "roughly circular," as per the guidelines set out in the International Foot Roundness Screening Protocol (IFRSP) subsection 4(i through iv) are required to pay a minimum accommodation fee of US$260 and up to US$475 for feet deemed "perfectly circular" as per the guidelines set out in the IFRSP subsection 6(i through vii). Refusal to consent to these fees can result in penalties including detention for no more than 21 days pending criminal prosecution under the International Air Traffic Security Act, INTERPOL, Section 16, subsection 4(b), schedule A.  I mention this knowing that M-A will be travelling with us and wish to avoid any possible delays in our travel plans.

B1 replies:

Good call on the regulations. And just to clarify, you misread the sections and the penalties for perfectly circular (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circle) feet include, but are not limited to, incarceration for a minimum duration of 6 years and extensive sanding of the feet in question so as to remove all circular and ovaloid qualities. Specifications reagarding the duration of the sanding process, as well as the techniques and materials employed in its execution, can be found in the International Foot Derounding Protocol  (Chapters III through LII). Failure to obtain any angled sections in the foot will not be held against the sanders and can result in accusations of high treason and is punishable by death.

B2 again:

Thank you for the clarification. I would also like cite the final judgment in the first case tried under this new legislature, James K. Henderson v. The Republic of Korea, International Court of Justice, 2010:

"[...] the court cannot uphold imprisonment and physical restraint as reasonable grounds for refusal to comply with the regulations of the International Foot Derounding Protocol [...] as prior knowledge of the perfectly round feet [...] and the regulations and affects of the Protocol having been made public several months prior to its effective date [...] demonstrate beyond this Court's doubt that the accused did knowingly and recklessly persist in boarding, occupying and using the facilities of overseas-bound aircraft after having had ample time to comply with the regulations of the Protocol and take subsequent actions to ensure that its standards were met prior to boarding any aircraft. [...] By the power vested in it by the International Court of Justice Legislature, this court finds the defendant guilty on all counts, [...] and sentences him to be placed in a container of sufficient volume in which for him to be completely submerged in a quantity of vegetable oil at least twenty-seven (27) times greater than the volume of his person, and confined to this container in the presence of a quantity of vegetable oil equivalent to that of the adorementioned, until breathing has been sufficiently restricted so as to cause cessation of life."

According to this precedent, detention is not grounds for defence so M-A you'd better make sure your feet meet the requirements of the
IFRSP before we leave.


Also, when we were having Christmas over Skype, the conversation turned to clothes and after they hated on many a trend (B2 thinks the creator of Crocs should burn in hell for all eternity), they enlisted my help in designing the ultimate pair of overalls: satin silk, pinstriped and skin-tight. A revolution in business attire.

Yesterday, in honour of American Thanksgiving, five of us made the perilous journey from Nishi-Tokyo to Chiba, to partake of chicken (lots of chicken), various vegetables (porn and peas! :D), mashes potatoes, stuffing, cranberries (in various states of solidity), and pie. Lots, and lots of pie. And cake.

Quote of the evening: "It's a basic human right to not look like Horio."

It's true. In fact, the people who drafted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are kicking themselves right now, thinking, "How could we have forgetten the most obvious one?! DX"

In other news, I called in late for work because I just couldn't drag myself out of bed, and felt ready to keel over all day, culminating in a dizzy spell during my afternoon lesson that nearly had me calling over to my coworker, "Can you take over for a minute while I pass out?", but I couldn't get my voice to work, so I refrained. It passed after a moment, and I was all right after that.

Then I went a spent a bunch of money on gifts for my family. Mostly. Part of it was spent on The Coolest Belt Ever, which I can't wait to wear tomorrow! <3 And also a few cheap long-sleeved t-shirts, because layering is no longer a fashion statement, it's a must with the chill setting in. I'm glad I found some which are supposed to be long and kind of wide on tiny Japanese girls -- they fit my shoulders!

When I was in a menswear store getting stuff for my brothers, I was asked if I needed help finding a size. I'm wondering whether the clerk thought I was shopping for myself, because I was wearing a hoodie I bought at that very store.

When I came home, I had this glorious list of stuff to do, and set about doing it... but got mired in item #3, which was "prepare Christmas parcels for family". I had about a million things to separate into little bags, so it took longer than expected. That's my excuse for the dishes still languishing in the sink.

Tabitha is sitting on my lap, keeping warm. She'll no doubt complain when I make a move to get up...
People, people! I made cream sauce for my pasta -- possibly the first time I've ever made a cream sauce, but that's not important right now -- and it thickened! Who cares if it wasn't actually cream sauce, since I used only milk, who cares if it was a tiny bit lumpy, who cares if it needed more salt, IT THICKENED! If you can't fully grasp the magnitude of this, know that I can follow pretty much any recipe you throw at me, but until now, the one skill that completely eluded me was the power to make a sauce thicken. Well, not anymore! *insane cackle of glee*

* * *

Now, a couple of things. First up, Turkey Day, Take II!

Americans have this funny thing where they celebrate Thanksgiving a mere month before Christmas (is it perhaps meant as warming up to the overeating of the holidays? XD), and seeing as how great a success Thanksgiving was last month, let's give it another go, shall we?

Date: Sunday, November 29th
Time: Up for debate, but around a general supper-ish time, though people can arrive as early as they like
Location[livejournal.com profile] lizstarsky and [livejournal.com profile] akahannah's place out in the wilds of Chiba (nearest station:  Kita-Kogane, Jouban Line). As for how to get there from the station, I've never been myself, so ask the hostesses! ^_^

Food List Thus Far:

[livejournal.com profile] lizstarsky: Pumpkin pie, mashed potatoes, small portion of onion-free stuffing, meat of some kind of no one else brings any
Me: Stuffing, apple pie
[livejournal.com profile] nekonezumi: More pie? XD

Join us for food, fun, and gratitude! ^_^

* * *

The Philippines have been having a really hard time of it this year, with the typhoons lining up to cause as much destruction as possible. One of my coworkers was back there visiting her family when one of the big ones struck in September, and the water was chest-deep in her parents' house; they were among the lucky ones in her region. There have been nearly 1000 deaths because of the storms, not to mention the property and personal belongings that have been lost, damaged, or destroyed.

Anyway, my coworker's church is collecting clothing and shoes to send to the worst-hit areas, so if you Tokyo-area people have anything you'd like to donate, let me know!
Am in the middle of packing. A big part of my packing strategy has been: "Did I have this the last time I went back to Canada? Has anyone from back home seen me wear this? If so, can't take it with me!" Does this make me a shallow person? XD Seriously, though, I feel as though I've never looked better than I do now, and I want my outfits to reflect how I see myself. Feel free to mock my deluded sense of fashion behind my back. .____.;

I've managed to fail on several fronts in the Department of Being Prepared. Namely, all but one lightbulb on my standing lamp have died and I haven't bought replacements; I haven't yet vacuumed my room, though I gave the sewing room a lick and a promise the other day; I've only done 99 out of the 120 points in my Japanese grammar review book, though my goal was to finish it before leaving for Canada -- this means the book will be crossing the Pacific with me, along with a kanji review book and possibly another grammar/vocabulary book. Because it's not as though I'll have anything to do while I'm there! @_@

K gave me an early birthday present, the most awesomely-titled book ever: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. That solves my dilema of what reading material to bring along with me; I've started The Lies of Locke Lamora, for some reason I'm not too keen on taking it with me. Though if I did, it would make it a well travelled book indeed: my father brought it to me in April, along with the sequel, which he took back to Canada with him because he didn't have time to finish it in Hawaii, and which I'm going to bring back with me to Japan.

A small victory was had in finally hanging up my Dream Live 6th poster. Because I would have felt more than faintly ridiculous had I failed to do that before seeing the new show. Now if only I could post my review of it...

Another victory that isn't really a victory is that I spent YET MORE MONEY on nail polish (I didn't have any sparkly yellow or sparkly coral yet! *justified*) and earrings (I didn't have any shoulder-duster ones yet!).

Bloh, I really need to get to sleep, because I've decided that vacuuming and dishes can be put off until the morning. Assuming I can drag myself out of bed early enough to get it done! I'll need to find energy somehow, though, because I have a hot date with Rikkai's tennis team tomorrow night. :D And then I have to meet up with [livejournal.com profile] llamachan, Tabitha-sitter extraordinaire to bring her to my humble abode.

[Please to be noting that the following is not meant to be taken as a lament over the fact that I don't have an AC unit, because the past few days have proven to me that air conditionning only aggravates my stuffed nose; I feel better as soon as I set foot outside.]

It's so hot that even sitting still, wearing nothing but my panties, I had droplets of sweat running down my chest earlier this evening.

And on that oh-so-sexy thought (XD!), I bid you good night.
Arrived safely in Hawaii this morning, after going back in time: we left Tokyo at 9 p.m. on Sunday, and landed in Honolulu at 9 a.m. on Sunday! Freaky...

For some reason, I was sure the flight would be 8 hours. Why I thought this I don't know, since I know that Tokyo to Vancouver is a much greater distance, and that only takes 9 hours... @_@

So far, the beach is gorgeous, and I felt terribly overdressed (wearing what I wore to tenimyu, since most of my flist saw me there XD) so the first order of the day, while we were waiting for our hotel room to be made ready, was to buy a bathing suit and some beach clothes.

Success! I has a new bikini that is neither a) in shades of blue nor b) polka dotted, which are what all my other suits are. And my mum and I spotted a cheap clothing store, so we'll be going back that-a-way tomorrow to get more stuff.

I'm still groggy, though I did have a nice nap an hour ago, so I think I'll head back up to the room and see if the men of the family (naturally, my mother and are ready to go!) are in any state to go out and find some supper.
Tomorrow is White Day, and you all know what that means, right? I will be officially divorced! o(^O^)o Not that I haven't considered myself as such for over two years -- and I just remembered that I failed to observe the two-year anniversary of my moving out on my own.

You know what's dangerous? Having an hour to kill in Shinjuku. Because I ended up at Odakyu and found that beyond the super-fancy and crazy-expensive perfume and make-up counters, there's a little "cheap" section, where you can get eyeshadow for under Y2000 a cake! *gasp* And it turned out I was in a mood for nail polish yesterday, even though the last time I did anything more to my nails than cutting or filing them was ages ago. Plus, there was this shade, in an adorable little bottle, called "Techno bar à Tokyo", so how could I not? It's sparkly black and I'm wearing it now. I also bought a couple of books that will hopefully level up my nihongo. I resisted buying the latest issue of JILLE, though I'm sure I'll cave in within a couple of days, because how can I resist Imajuku Asami's adorable face?

Later on, feeling proud of myself for not having given in to laziness and having opted to walk home from Mitakadai instead of taking the bus from Kichijouji, I remembered I'd left my bike... at Kichijouji station. *headdesk* So it took me an extra half hour to get home, because I wasn't about to pay the train fare to go two stations down the line!

In other news, I felt that after the uplifting, fascinating, inspiring, draining, bemusing experience that was reading Vellum and Ink, the only thing to do was to do back and revisit an old, well-loved friend. Yes, THAT book. The perfect fix when you've just finished something incredible and want something you know you'll love, something you know will make you smile and tear up a bit and will have you choking back laughter on the train because dammit, that description of a first-rate lurker gets you every time*. Because nothing brings down my "I've just read a great book!" high quicker than reading a lousy book right after, and I didn't want to take any chances!

Got my coworker to take a shot of me with the kiddies yesterday, and I was pleasantly surprised, when I looked at the picture afterwards, to see that in direct sunlight, I'm still truly blonde. Also amusing is how tiny the kids look beside my giant (sure, yuck it up, but I'm by no means small in this country!) self.

Speaking of my giant self, the Miracle of the Jeans failed to repeat itself when I tried on some shorts recently, though I supposed I shouldn't be too bitter about it. After all, a while ago it was the XL shorts I could barely get over my hips; now it's the L shorts that I can with great difficulty zip up and then be unable to move around in at all. And it's another excuse to not spend money! :D

My new budgeting plan is going quite well, in spite of having two major "extra" expenses over the past couple of weeks (sunglasses and getting hair lasered off my legs). It's simpler to withdraw all the money for the week at once, and I've settled on Monday as the start of the week. Hopefully, I'll be able to add a bit to my savings, especially since until the end of April the cash flow will be somewhat thinner between ending my second job, my first full-time paycheque coming at the end of April and one of my private students taking a break until May.

Now, time to take all the bobby pins out of my hair (my styling experiments continue...!) and get to bed.

* Good Omens, for those who don't count THAT book among their "would take it to a deserted island if I were only allowed five titles" list.
Over the past couple of days, I've finally come to a decision as to how I will control my spending. Not that it's really out of hand, but I'm not saving as much as I'd like. Therefore, my plan:

- Rent and bills all need to be paid at the end of the month, so I withdraw what's needed and pay all at once*.
- I've given myself a weekly allowance, to be withdrawn at the beginning of the week; all expenses, groceries, outings, etc. must be paid for using this money**. Now all that's left to decide is whether the beginning of the week is Saturday or Monday. XD
- At the end of each week, what (if anything) is left over goes into my piggy bank (must get piggy bank!) and will be money to splurge on something nice. Like, I don't know, maybe a plane ticket back home this summer so I can be Anna's bridesmaid!
- Am still debating whether the money from my private lessons should go directly into the "something nice" fund... Maybe 50-50?

That said, I bought some clothes today, because I was in Ikebukuro in a part of Sunshine City I'd never been to before, and OMG CLOTHES EVERYWHERE! And I apparently cannot resist cute Japanese salesgirls being all cute and chatty and complimenting my outfit. XDDD Still, all the sweetness in the world didn't change the fact that the Really Cool Jacket was too tight across the shoulders, which is one of my two Major Issues*** when it comes to buying clothes here. Because I have abnormally broad shoulders by Japanese clothing standards, it seems. @_@ No matter, the Even Cooler Jacket turned out to be on sale and it fits me fine, as long as I don't wear anything too bulky underneath.

* It's annoying, but my water/sewage bill is always due on the 23rd of the month, so I have to pay that one before the others, which are all due between the last day of the month and the 6th of the next.
** I'll make an exception for charging my Suica, and withdraw money for that as needed.
*** The other one being my bum and hips, of course.
Last week, I took apart a worn-out blouse I liked, to use the pieces as a pattern to make some similar tops. As I was picking it apart, I found out that the reason the drawstring had never drawn properly was because it was sewn to the lace casing on one side, because it cuts production costs to have someone just sew the lace on over the drawstring, rather than sew the lace on and then thread the drawstring through.

Most people (myself included) probably don't much think about where the things we buy come from, or who made them, but I found myself wondering who had made my blouse, imagined a Chinese factory girl getting sleepy over her machine, not being as careful as she could have been when sewing on her 472nd lace casing of the day.

I live!

Jan. 30th, 2009 10:38 pm
Yesterday, we took the kids to the Inokashira Zoo, and a grand time was had by all. There were three of us herding 11 four-year-olds, and we managed, though we did have to raise our voices at times. But still, they were just so cute it was hard to be harsh with them, and I was too busy taking pictures, anyway.

B1 gets a kick out of making me laugh, but this is the first time he's done it this way: we are loving siblings )


So this evening I went back to Parco to check out the last of the sales... and ended up spending nearly 10,000y. But it was all in the name of cute shoes, cute slips and awesome pants. How awesome are these pants? For starters, they're green (almost exactly the same shade as my green jeans, in fact >_<), and also the lining of the pockets has POLKA DOTS. But best of all, they're those weird double-waisted pants (like the red ones Mao-chan is wearing in the Dream Live 5th pamphlet) which means I can wear two belts at once, should I choose to do so.

Actually, I lie. The best part of those pants is that I bought them in a regular Japanese shop, i.e. Not Uniqlo.

They Had My Size. Or rather, I Am the Right Size (for their largest size). This is Good, but it also opens up a whole world of dangerous shopping possibilites... ^.^

Also, Japanese salesgirls are too damn cute, and they're chatty. Even chattier when I'm wearing my cute rainboots, as I was today.

And now, time for some more So You Think You Can Dance Canada as I sip my camomile tea.
Today marked a first step in one of my new year's resolutions; namely, getting divorced! I had my signature witnessed on the affidavit that will bring me one step closer to becoming a free woman once more.

I also visited the dentist for the first time since... last year? I really can't remember when I went to that clinic in Roppongi, though it was before March of 2008.

Today, K and I swooped down on Kichijouji for the January sales, leaving a swath of destruction in our wake.


Fine, we weren't that bad. But we explored a bunch of stores off Sunroad, did the whole damn Parco building, and managed a strategic strike at Lonlon (yesterday's reconnaissance mission paid off!) before calling it a day. My spoils include:

- a huge fluffy towel (it's practically a blanket! I love it.)
- 3 pairs of earrings (7th floor of Parco has an accessories shop that has this crazy Y315 sale going on, with seemingly random stuff on sale - I got one pair of earrings for Y315 in green, and the exact same ones in pink were still at the original price of Y1300... what gives?)
- 1 ring (actually 3 rings fitted together)
- 2 bras and panties
- a cute black sweater dress with a hood
- a dangly charm thingy for my purse
- a grab bag from the 3 Coin shop
- SWEET POTATO-FLAVOURED KITKAT! (Or, as the package has it, "Daigaku-imo". ^_^ Sadly, it doesn't taste all that much like sweet potato, but it's still good.)
Not only are my Takumi Panties, well, Takumi panties (XDDDD), they're also really cute and really comfortable. I would go and buy a whole pile of them, except at Y840 a pair... *doesn't want to go back to old stretched-out underwear, should not have spoiled self with expensive things, must do laundry more often*

I dreamt that I was really skinny, like skin-and-bones skinny. It was gross.

My eyes are dry and I wish I could crawl back under the covers with Tabitha warm and soft and purring against me. Right now she's curled up in a little kittyball on top of my futon, taunting me.

My NaNoWriMo fic outline is still growing. If I ever get this done, be warned that it contains Angsty Oishi, Somewhat Evil Fuji, Original Female Characters, Comfort Sex Shishido (okay, not exactly XD) and a Gratuitous Trip To Okinawa!
I haven't written a word of actual story for NaNoWriMo, but I've got over 1000 words of outline for a Golden Pair angst-sap-smut-fest written in a notebook, and that's not even the whole story! [livejournal.com profile] umbrellaofdoom has requested that I include the line, "What faggotry was that?!" in it, and since Shishido is already a major character, it shouldn't be too hard. Except that he's to be involved in a lot of said faggotry, so... XD But I also have a list of other fic ideas, in case I run out of steam with the first one, so maybe I can include it in one of those.

Working with young children forces me to ask questions such as, "Yuriko, why are you sticking your hand up my shorts?"; "Hina, why are you trying to lift my skirt up?"; "Leon, why are you groping my breast?"; "Haruka, what do you think you're going to find in my back pocket?"

I love that in this country it's possible to buy super-cute shoes for under Y2000 (of course they were made in China!) that are comfortable to walk in! Now I have to bring myself to throw out the old, worn shoes that these new ones were meant to replace.

Studying for the JLPT has reminded me of how much I enjoy writing kanji, and how particular I am about them. There are some kanji that I just don't like the look of, such as 長 or 違 (and in that case, I retained the meaning immediately because it just looks wrong to me); others such as 家 or 機, I like the look of but can never seem to write gracefully; and others I like the look of and can write very prettily, such as 魚 or 遊.

Tabitha approves of the drop in temperature because it means I use more blankets, which means a cushier bed for her. Unfortunately, this also means that the centre of the futon is hers, and if I want to move my legs during the night I have to do it around her, because a comfortably sleeping cat weighs ten times more than that same cat does when awake -- she will not be budged. Also, she starts mewing at me earlier to get to bed. As she's doing right now.

I haven't yet finished writing my reports on the training workshops, and they have to be mailed Friday at the very, very latest.

K and I are already plotting next year's Halloween costume extravaganza, which will be Alice in Wonderland. She's to be Alice (because I don't want to be), I'm to be the Mad Hatter, and we'll have the White Rabbit, the Queen of Hearts, the Cheshire Cat and the Caterpillar. Ooh, I've got fabulous costume ideas dancing through my head already! I don't plan on making strict adaptations of the Disney versions of the characters, because I'm not sure the kids would recognise them anyway, and I don't want to make an actual caterpillar suit.

Now that Halloween's over, we get to look forward to Christmas! Last year, I was ever so happy that my mother had found me a copy of Nana Mouskouri's Christmas, which is an essential part of the season in my family. There are two other albums I'd like to have as well. One of them is Raffi's Christmas Album. What the other is, I have no idea, but it's an old tape my parents have, featuring traditional carols sung by a choir -- in my family, it's known as "the Grosse Marie tape", because my parents swear that at some point there is mention of "Grosse Marie". My brothers and I conceed that point, but we've always heard the beginning of one of the songs as, "Abu Dhabi bébé rose", even though the songs are all in English. I have no clue what the lyrics really are, and I don't really care.



February 2012

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