Friday, June 5, 2009


today was the end of an era.. graduation. the graduation was really nice. it started with the kids singing a couple songs.. "awesome God" and "you are my all in all."
after special awards, first grade went up to be presented with their promotion certificates for passing the first grade. before giving the awards, i thanked the parents and told my kids for the hundredth time how much i'm going to miss them. :) waiting in the seats during the rest of the ceremonytaking pictures with the kids one last time!! awwww so sad to say goodbye.oh jed and leoi received lots of gorgeous flowers from my kids!!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

summer birthday party!

since i NEVER got to celebrate a birthday at school when i was growing up, and the kids really wanted me to celebrate my birthday with them, i decided to have a summer birthdays party since leo's birthday is also after school is out. to mix it up, we had the birthday party at A&W. riko came to help, which was very nice.. it got a little chaotic! :)

riko brought party hats! as you can see.. jed was very excited for time!the birthday cake!leo's cousin and her daughter.. right before the picture she moved the little girl's fingers to the peace sign.. so cute!! this little girl is precious beyond words.. she had tape on her back reading "i love leo" and she gave me a bouquet of flowers for my birthday :)the birthday boy and girlice cream timethank you riko!

last weekend before school's out!

isn't that crazy!?!
friday was low key since i was exhausted from the school week. i joined laura and eric for sushi at a place i haven't been to yet. delicious!! i'll definitely have to go there one more time before i leave!
saturday i was HOPING for sunshine, so i met up with toshi, riko, and leo (seison also came with them) at the beach. it was windy and cloudy.. riko and i covered up with towels the whole time haha. it was still fun.. but the weather deceived me and i got really burnt. that evening we all went to seison's house (the restaurant/house) to listen to a band play 80's music. seison's dad used to be in the band, so he invites them to play.. so fun!! another parent showed up and sat with us.. great company and great music! and leo fell asleep in my lap again.. such a cutie!
saturday i met up with them again to go to toshi's company barbecue at another beach. it was fun meeting some of his co-workers. AND they brought their other son, rei.. so adorable!! probably the funniest thing that happened.. riko got some water balloons for the kids to play with and rei was holding leo's.. leo walked over to him and yelled that it was his.. rei looks at him then smashes the water balloon into the ground.. it was not expected and so hilarious! we were in shock.
now it's time for the last week of school!! i'm still in awe of how fast this school year went!!


i finally went to cocok's.. the cute day spa that is very popular here in okinawa. i went with junko (yamauchi campus secretary) and her daughter elana to get our toes done. there was a book about thirty or so pages long PLUS corkboards with fake nails on them to help you pick the design you want.. saying it was hard to decide is an understatement!! they handpaint your toenails with real paint so it lasts forever (well it feels like it), which is good since i'm leaving soon! it was a lot of fun.. very relaxing.. and drank the best lemon tea i've ever had. after the pedicures, we went to a mexican restaurant for dinner.. fun night!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

holiday weekend!

this weekend was busy.. BUT the best kind of busy!
friday after the spring concert, leo's parents invited me to hang out with them at a pre-k students' parents house, which is also a restaurant. about ten sets of parents showed up from the school!! so much fun!! the students also came, which of course was very entertaining haha. it was so good to be able to interact with the parents outside of school and meeting other parents from the different grades. good company and good conversation.. perfect combination!! :) and i didn't get home til 2:30 am... they know how to have fun!the home/restaurant.. it's super cute (you can't really see it.. mona's sister.. pictured above.. took my camera out of my purse and had some fun haha). and the backyard overlooks all the love hotels, so it's all lit up at night!the kids were getting tired by eleven or so. even leo fell asleep in my lap!saturday was a lazy day hanging out at the beach and window shopping. when i got to the beach i was amazed at how low the tide was!!sunday leo's parents invited me to hang out at the beach with them. by the time i got there it was pouring... just my luck! we decided to go to a bath house instead since there are three or four different pools and a sauna.. very nice! riko (leo's mom) and i spent most of the time in the hot springs pool.. so warm and relaxing!! there was also a waterfall pool that i went to for a little bit when ayana and her family joined us and her and leo wanted to swim. my skin was definitely soft when i got out of that hot springs pool four hours later haha.. i looked like an old lady with my raisin fingers and toes!
later that night leo and the fam picked me up to head to riko's parent's house for a family gathering. the whole family meets once a month to stay in touch and each family puts in money, and whoever needs it that month gets to take it. so thoughtful! i met the grandpa and grandma when i met leo and the fam at the beach a couple weeks ago. he was very happy to see me haha. and he knows english (he worked on base before retiring) which was fun for me! and i've learned quite a few japanese phrases which was entertaining for them haha. but the grandpa really wants me to marry his first grandson, who wasn't there because he is in mainland japan. he kept going "i'm soo happy! you are here and i want you to be a part of this family!" haha.. he was too cute. i really love her family.. they are such good people and full of life. after hanging out there, a few of us went to a karaoke bar to end the night. this was more american style.. it was an actual bar and not individual rooms. one old man was there singing old okinawan songs.. he was belting them out!! oh gosh.. it was priceless. and then the bar tender wanted me to marry her son haha.. two arranged marriages in one night! VERY fun night.. and i'm so grateful to have gotten to know toshi and riko better over these past few weeks.. they are amazing people!!
today i took ayana, noa, and moe to the aquarium. they randomly told me last week at school that they really wanted to go to the aquarium, and since i have a season pass, i told them if they asked their parents, i would take them for the day. so off we went this morning to spend the day. it was a lot of fun, and i'm going to miss these kids so much when i leave next month!noa acting like a teenager with her cell phone haha!a shark egg!! i was mesmerized watching this tiny little shark wiggle around in this egg sac!!

spring concert

friday was the spring concert. they did a fantastic job!! before their play, "roaming through romans," each class played a song on the recorder.. so good!! it was karin's last night (she is leaving for florida for the summer.. kind of like an exchange program).. you might not recognize her because of her cute new haircut and perm!the always entertaining fourth grade boystwo minutes to showtime!


thursday i found out my girls have learned how to flirt.
we had dress rehearsal at the concert hall for the spring concert. one of the moms could take seven of my kids, so four girls stayed behind with me. as were were waiting outside for the school van to pick us up, i heard the all too familiar song i hear every weekend from my apartment.. "yakimoooooo." i always thought an old man sang the song at the middle school.. i had no idea what it meant! when the girls heard it there faces lit up.. yakimo means sweet potato in japanese. this guy plays the music in his truck so people know he's coming (kind of like the ice cream truck haha) and he has a roaster in the back of his truck that has hot delicious sweet potatoes in it.
so he drives by and my girls start yelling at him (in the sweetest, flirtiest way possible) to give them some yakimo. he politely says no and keeps going.. but then he turns around. the girls start sqealing when he stops his truck in front of us. i am laughing the whole time watching all this happen.. and then he brings us four huge sweet potatoes! then ayana goes.. "miss rachel pay!" hahaha.. what?! the guy says no, they're free, and then gets back in his truck.. turns on the music.. and goes on about his day. they were so happy, every time someone came by they would yell hello and wave haha.. such flirts ;)