Camping Dads With Daughters

Posted on Facebook 2014/11/02 Thinking of starting a new club called Camping Dads With Daughters. Only under the guidance of a dad like us could the girls have completed a grueling multi hour hike that ended walking through the dark and camping where there have been several bear sightings this year and one trapped by [...]

There Be Bear (and Bare Ribs)

Posted on Facebook 2014/11/04 And then there were seven. Bears, that is, living in our hamlet. This is one that our neighbor trapped last week just up the road from our house. Tonight we had it for dinner as bear ribs, and bear-bones soup. They believe there to be seven more in the nearby forest. [...]

Autumn Harvest

Originally posted on facebook Oct 29/2014; Revisited Sept. 04 2015 It doesn’t matter which season, they are all “the best” when it comes time to enjoy whatever grows at that time. Now it is time for nameko mushrooms (nothing makes better soup) and mukago (tiny potaotes that grow on vines) We took Mona out of [...]

Little Doll House in The Prairie

Photos originally posted on Facebook 2014/11/24. Current reflection Jul 25, 2015 Update on the dolls. Last night and today we worked on making some more dolls to add to the doll house that was built out of a drawer turned on its side, and a simple roof. Now there is a dad/mom (turning the head [...]

Home Made Dolls

Photos from Oct 28 2014. Written on Jul 23 2015. I write this with the benefit of hind-sight. When I first made these dolls for Mona, this is what I wrote on my facebook page: I think I found my new career. In Michigan Mona had a chance to play with her cousin’s doll house [...]

Wataame and Taiko

Went to the village shukakusai (harvest festival) today where once again we realize how lucky we are to live in a small town like this and attend events like this where everyone knows everyone and we can let Mona run free and she always finds someone to hang with. Its also great to live in [...]

Sick Day

Mona’s teacher asked that we keep her home from school today because she is “sick”. She didn’t get much rest aside from getting a chance to sleep in for an hour or two longer than normal. I had inside office work to do, but the weather was too beautiful, and with Mona home there was [...]


It’s that time of year again, and we were caught completely off-guard. Sort of. The plan from last Spring was that we would not be living here most of the time over the next winter, so I didn’t make any effort to gather fire wood. Plans change, and suddenly the cold winter is bearing down [...]


This is for Grandma, who doesn’t know what mulberries are, despite somehow managing to teach us the nursery rhyme “Here we go round the mulberry bush”, and despite me posting photos of them every year when they are in season. Mona and I have been waiting anxiously all spring for the fruits to finally ripen [...]

New Habits Die Quickly

In June I had decided that this year would not be a repeat of last year, when I was not able to keep up with customers and was forced to take a bus up a mountain while they rode their bikes. I made a big effort to ride almost every day, and was actually getting [...]