i’m baaaack

Why hello there!  I’m back.  Actually I got back home almost a week ago but I was super busy with work.  I went away for a work trip for a week and instead of coming home on Friday, I flew back to the DC metro area to see my mom, sister, and my in laws.  It was such a perfect weekend to be in DC too.  The weather was AMAZING!  The only regret I had was not going to the tidal basin to see the cherry blossoms.  😦  This year actually commemorates the 100th year since they’ve been planted.  I’ve been before but I just love being around cherry blossoms (even when the pollen count is high and I get ridiculous allergies).  Growing up in Japan, there would be a cherry blossom festival on the naval base and there was this one spot that had a row of cherry blossoms that you could walk under.

Isn’t it BEAUTIFUL?    

We have a couple of parks in the bay that have them but the row of cherry blossoms along the tidal basin is just GORGEOUS!  Love DC!

But being back home to see my family, friends, and coworkers before the baby arrives was nice.  I’ll see some of them in May for my baby shower or in June when I give birth, but some of them I probably won’t see until Christmas and during that time I’ll be toting around a 6 month old.  How crazy!

But I’m back in the bay enjoying the hubs’ company!  AWW!  And as I enter my third trimester this week, I’m glad I’m not traveling for a while (at least for work.  still got that babymoon to plan.  LA perhaps?) because I have a ton of to do’s before babygirl arrives.

Enough rambling for now.  I just wanted to say hi and I will be posting pictures from my trip to DC along with the usual lookbooks, recipes, etc.

Thanks for stopping by and reading!

pray for japan

In a world of heartbreak right now.  Just got wind from some friends on Facebook that the base I used to live at was ordered to evacuate, along with other bases nearby as ordered per President Obama.  While the base is 200 miles away from the plant, the evacuation was done for preemptive measure.  Unfortunately, some members of the military are choosing to stay, as well as Japanese citizens.  There have been increased efforts to charter more planes to Japan so that some citizens can flee the country.  Please pray for Japan, better yet the World.  This could impact us all.  You just don’t know…

my second home

I know I haven’t posted in 2 weeks.  Work projects always seem to be creeping up more than usual lately.  Sigh.

I wanted to talk about something more serious than food, fashion, and sports (March Madness) this post.  I wanted to talk about life and my second home Japan.  Why is Japan your second home?  Because I spent most of my adolescent years in Japan.  I’ve mentioned that I’m a military brat.  I lived there from the young age of 10 to the adolescent age of 17.  7 awesome years.  There’s just something about living overseas.  While the experiences I are pretty much the  same as those that grew up state side, mine just seems a tad different.  Those years were spent on a Naval Base that is along the coast in a Bay area about 300 miles south of the epicenter.  I have a couple friends that still live there and some of friends’ parents are still working there (contracted via government services) so I was getting updates through them via Facebook as no one could get through when calling.  The base had to evacuate and go to higher ground but eventually were all able to back home within a matter of hours.  The ships had to leave the port immediately in case the tsunami came through and from what I understand went to Sendai to assist the victims thereafter.  When you hear “7th Fleet” on the news, they’re talking about our base command along with others.  It was comforting to know that the base was spared.

I used to take trips to various bases in Japan to play soccer and volleyball.  Oneof the bases was an army base near Sendai (15 miles north).  From what I’ve read, they had to evacuate the entire base during, oddly enough, a rescue exercise.   The tsunami, thankfully, did not reach them; however, they’ve lost power and heat.  Rescue workers are arriving at the base to assist those merely 30 minutes away.

I’ve heard reports from various friends of the power outages the have to go through in each section of the country.  About 4-5 hours a day maybe even more depending where you are.  Supermarkets are out of food.  There is no gasoline.

And while everyone in Japan is suffering from the earthquakes effects, nothing compares to the disaster in Hachinohe.  The tsunami swept so much away and my heart breaks every time I see the footage on TV.  My co-worker’s father lives in Sendai with her stepmother and brother and she was unable to get through to him on Friday.  Google finder sadly did not help and apparently were reporting some people dead when they weren’t.  She has not been able to talk to her dad; however, he was able to send a text to her cousin in Tokyo to alert everyone that he and the family were safe.  Unfortunately, their house was destroyed.  She doesn’t know the exact details of where they are and how they’re doing, except that they’re OK.  If you watch the news, some people have been allowed back to certain areas in attempts to salvage some of their belongings.  Others have been advise to stay away due to potential bacteria and radiation.

I am currently in the UK and was watching Sky News this morning as I was getting ready and they were talking about ShelterBoxes.  It was really interesting.  It’s basically a kit for survivors that consists a tent, heater, food, blankets, etc.  I wanted to help others but I didn’t want my money going to marketing  (for example, while a good chunk goes to research of American Cancer Society, a good chunk also goes to marketing).  I went to networkforgood.org and was able to get a list of the various organizations that are assisting with the Tsunami/Earthquake victims.  I ended up donating to ShelterBox after I found out 91% of the donations go to disaster victims, which to sound so generous.  I wish I could donate more.  I even wish more that I could volunteer and help those in need especially in a country where I had some of my fondest memories.

Sadly, this is just the beginning for everyone.  Nuclear plants are going off and people are exposed to radiation.  Victims have lost their homes.  The entire country is going through a schedule power outage.  So please help.  While the earthquake shut things down and most buildings were table as Japanese architecture is made for that design, no one was aware of the tsunami come.  While all other countries including the west coast states in the US were warned of the tsunami, this one was not clear.  Here’s a perspective for you, this earthquake is 100… maybe even a 1000 times worse than the Haiti earthquake (which was a magnitude of about 7.5) due to the magnitude of almost teetering a 9.0 and the tsunami.  Do your part and help others.  There should be more kindness in the world.  May God be with us.