May 27, 2009

More Field Work

This is the field behind our house. This farmer put straw mats between his rows of corn. Click on the picture to see what is in his truck.

Here he is getting something from the van. His helper is taking a rest. They covered some rows of vegetables with nets. Those metal poles stuck in the ground will be bent and covered, too.

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May 26, 2009

Field Work

Here's our vegetable stand man working in his onion field. The corn on this side of that path (in the foreground) belongs to another farmer. These pictures were taken from our roof garden. Click on them to enlarge them.

He farms that whole area on the left side of the metal railings. His wife sometimes helps him. I just found out that he is 84 years old!

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May 25, 2009

Sun After the Rain

It will be the rainy season soon. May is usually really hot, but it's been cool this year. We've had rain from time to time, too.

This is a hosta in our garden. It comes back up every year. Click on the photo to see the sun through the hosta leaf.

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May 22, 2009

The New Bicycle Parking Lot

This is the new bicycle parking lot in our neighborhood. The train station is around the corner and down the street. As you can see motorcycles can be parked here, too. They have their own place along the fence. See the post "Bicycle Racks" (below) for a close-up of how bicycles are parked.

This is the entrance.
You can either pay daily or use a pre-paid monthly pass.

This is the exit (when you leave without your bicycle.)

Click here to see the old parking lot. Click on the labels below to see more parking areas.

Bicycle Racks

The new parking lot has racks for the bicycles. Click on the photos to enlarge them.

There are instructions posted.

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May 19, 2009

Another Field Lost?

This field is around the corner from our train station. I was shocked to see it like this. It was covered with plywood.

I walked further and saw bicycles parked on it. Another field lost to bicycle parking, I thought. I walked even further and saw that they were remodeling the old bicycle parking lot closer to the station. So this is temporary. I'll post pictures of the new parking lot.

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May 15, 2009

SCBWI Tokyo Presentations

Suzanne Kamata (left), author of Playing for Papa was presented with a plaque from SCBWI Tokyo regional advisor Holly Thompson (right). Suzanne Kamata's novella, "Pilgrimmage" published in Cicada Magazine, won the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators' Magazine Merit Award. Congratulations, Suzanne!

Laura Rennert (center) a senior agent from the Andrea Brown Literary Agency came to our SCBWI Tokyo chapter to do a presentation about writing fiction. It was great! I learned a lot. Her picture book, Buying, Training and Caring for Your Dinosaur, will come out October 2009. It looks fun.

Teri Suzanne an author/illustrator in our chapter received a Letter of Merit for illustration in the selection of the 2005 Magazine Merit Award. Click here to see samples of her paper cuts. She is not in this picture.

Thanks, again, Holly Thompson (right) for organizing a great event! Holly is a great SCBWI advisor and author. Check out her picture book, Wakame Gatherers, a Sakura Medal nominee.

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May 14, 2009

Caterpillar Crawling

The garden is crawling now with caterpillars and young ladybugs. Toto is keeping an eye on this one climbing the screen door. I moved it out of danger because Toto and her sister Nana were very interested in it.

I moved it onto one of great grandfather's bonsai trees. I don't know what the caterpillar will be. I can't find it in any of our bug books. I'll keep my eye out for it.

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May 12, 2009

Me in Highlights for Children® !

One of my game crafts is in the June 2009 issue of Highlights for Children® . It's not related to Japan.

I got two copies of the magazine today in the mail. More to come. Highlights for Children® and Highlights High Five® have accepted several things from me.

There are a lot of good stories, fun facts, crafts, and puzzles in the magazines.

Highlights for Children® --subscriptions

Highlights High Five® -- subscriptions
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May 11, 2009

Waiting on the Corn to Grow

The corn is growing. The farmer recently poked holes in some of the plastic and pulled the corn stalks through them. Some of the stalks are not tall enough yet.

This year the corn was planted further away from our fence. Too bad. Rattling corn stalks at the end of summer is nice.

Click on the picture to enlarge it. Those are poles of beans in the background.

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May 10, 2009

Printer Paper Illustrations

I love how companies put illustrations on products here to show how to use them. I also love that this paper comes from a sustainable forest. They call it "made from plantation forest".
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May 08, 2009

Salad Cereal

Brown rice flakes with salad. Well, why not? Twenty years ago I was surprised to see corn flakes in ice cream sundaes and parfaits here. I think I remember seeing that in the United States last summer. Or was that frozen yogurt with corn flakes?

Click on the picture to enlarge it.

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May 06, 2009

Neighbor's Roof

I took this picture of our neighbor's roof from our kitchen window yesterday. It was raining and we couldn't go out to see koinobori.

This isn't a traditional tile roof. These tiles or shingles are made of metal. The aluminum crescents near the edge are to hold snow. Click on the picture to enlarge it.

I zoomed in and saw for the first time that the snow guards have tulips on them.

Click on this link and the labels below for more information:

Kids Web Japan--koinobori

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May 05, 2009

Boy's Day 2009

Baba and Aunt brought sekihan, mochi and shobu upstairs today. Check old posts about our Boy's Day celebrations by clicking on the labels below. There is also more information at Kids Web Japan.

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Kids Web Japan --Boy's Day/Children's Day
Kids Web Japan--Golden Week

May 03, 2009

Back Out

I picked up the stray cat from the vet today. I carried it in a cage down the street to our garden to release it. It ran off to a shed across the field when I opened the cage. Later in the afternoon I saw the cat sleeping on the roof.

It looked peaceful and happy.

I woke it up even though I was using the zoom lens from far away! It has pretty eyes.
Click on the picture to enlarge it.

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