Seeing has how I'm *many* months and events behind, I'll combine September into one post. Here's the happenings of September 2010 in Japan:
Mallory loves hanging out with her doggie Maverick and kitty Bandit. Mav's food is in our downstairs bathroom, and for some reason Mallory just loves watching him eat.
We had to order Mallory her 'big girl' carseat as she has officially outgrown her infant seat. It came in this big white box, which was quite fun and stayed in our living room for about a week.
Mal started "walking" more and more, but only if you held her hand. She was quite fond of "walking" with Dada.
Another big event in September was my birthday. I turned the big 33, and our wonderful neighbors and friends came over for dinner. I made spaghetti, garlic bread and wine. (Yep, they came to our house and I made dinner- I wouldn't have had it any other way- they serve us dinner all the time too, so it all works out).
The big girl carseat finally made it into the car, so we had to take a few pictures of M's first ride.
Hanging out in her new seat with her stuffed panda from her great grandparents (she loves that little guy Nonna and Poppy!)
She loves her seat too, and fell sound asleep. She does that almost every time we go anywhere in the car! I have to say it does look pretty cozy- I wish someone would drive me around in a seat that padded!
Another big event in September was Mallory's modeling debut! About a month earlier, I took her into Tokyo for an audition to model in their catalog. She was picked, so she and I loaded up and went into Tokyo again to a "studio" for the photo shoot. The studio was basically just a couple of rooms in a building. One had a bed and some racks of clothes and a little area with blankets down for the kids to play (there were about 4-5 kids there at a time, all about M's age). The other room had another play area, a couch, and some more racks of clothes. Here's Mal, sitting in the pj's she's about the model, having a snack while waiting her turn.
Here are the pictures from the shoot that made it into the catalog. It was a pretty neat experience, and I have a copy of the catalog now to put in her scrapbook and show her someday. I wonder if she can put "Combi clothing model" on her resume someday? Or at least put it on a college application someday? We did make a few extra $'s (or yen's) from it and it was a fun experience. She and I both enjoyed it and I'd do it again if they pick her. I've always known my little girl is the cutest thing ever, but it's fun to have a Japanese kid's brand think so too. (Or and ironically, there is not even one Japanese child in the entire catalog- they are all blonde, blue-eyed kids- they love the true "American" around here!)
September also brings the beginning of football season, which in turn naturally brings naps on the couch! Please keep in mind that football games are shown at weird times of the day here because of the time difference (we are 15 hours ahead of CST), so the naps are legit :)
My cooking class met again for another successful lunch. I always enjoy my time with them, learning new things about Japan and Asia from them, and they love playing with Mallory and trying new foods.
Maverick hanging out in our living room. He's such a good boy, tolerating Mallory pulling on his ears and banging on his back and yelling "gog-gog" every time she sees him.
One day Mallory and I went off base to run some errands and do some shopping. I got hungry for lunch, so we stopped at a Japanese chain restaurant. I call it the "ball hand man" store as the sign has a stick figure drawing of this guy with huge long arms and balls on the ends. I have no idea the real name. Anyway, I ordered Mallory her first bowl of udon noodles, and she LOVED it!
Wonder what those ladies are eating/ (Actually, I did wonder what they were eating. It was a big bowl of...something...)
Mallory loves to be my laundry helper. The dryer balls (that are supposed to lift and separate the laundry in the dryer and make the load dry quicker) are her favorite toy every time I open the dryer door.
Mal also got her first REALLY BAD diaper rash, poor kid. So, we had so "neked play time" to let it heal. She seemed to enjoy it, maybe just a bit too much! Notice the plastic mat I kept trying to drag around and keep underneath her. It was a futile effort in the end :)
Mallory loves to grab Brett's hat out of his flight suit pocket and put it on when he gets home from work. Here you have "Captain Mallory".
Playing on the blow up bouncy toy at Wyatt's birthday party (the same one she wanted NOTHING to do with at her own birthday- funny what a difference a month makes!)
One day she was trying to play with the dryer balls, and just decided to crawl on into the dryer to get them. I found her like this:
The mom's group I'm a part of had a pot luck luncheon and the theme was "ties". We all work a tie and brought a food that started with T. Mallory wore her tie-dye shirt too. She was eating rice here I think (yes, I know that doesn't start with T, but most of the babies will eat it, so we made an exception).
At the end of the month, YOSC Culture Club started up again, and I signed up to be a part of it again this year. I loved being a part of this group last year, and definitely wanted to participate again. We have about 6 groups, and each group has about 8 Japanese ladies and 8 Americans that get together 2 times a month-one time the Japanese host and the other we host. We learn so much about each other's cultures and always have a great time. This year we had our Opening Ceremony, where every member was introduced and the basics of the club were discussed. Then the 6 small groups broke off for lunch. Our group took us over to a community center and made lunch for us. It was delicious. Here are the ladies getting ready to make Takoyaki. Yep, that's right, octopus balls. That is something I NEVER thought I'd put in my mouth, but believe it or not, you can't even taste the octopus. They are actually quite delicious.
They make them in these specially made takoyaki cookers. You pour in the batter, cabbage, and octopus pieces and let it cook a bit, and then flip them in the little circle, sorta like a pancake.
They also made us yakisoba, which is noodles and meat and peppers and cabbage all cooked together with a yummy sauce.
Mmmm...lunch is served. Takoyaki balls (topped with a bbq type sauce and Japanese mayonnaise), yakisoba, coleslaw and green tea. Delicious.
As always, September was an activity filled month, but we wouldn't have it any other way. So many memories and so many friends- we are so lucky to be living here in Japan!