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25th Aug, 2009

psyduck

Hello it's me again...

Yes, I still use this website, I'm just overly lazy.. and have been preoccupied with stuff.

The trip in Yakushima was awesome even though it was too cloudy too see the whole solar eclipse thing happening. It really is a beautiful place. The four-day hike was both wonderful and terrible; the scenery was awe-inspiring and everything, but the climb up and over the highest peak on the island really tested my limits.

Since the trip to Yakushima, I haven't been to hula or belly dance lessons. It was either no time or no energy...

The weeks preceeding and following the trip have been rather hectic to say the least.

I have decided that my work schedule totally sucks! All three of my schools are now six-days-a-week schools. What that means is I get a long weekend once a month and the rest of the time I only get Sunday off.

 

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18th Jun, 2009

happy smile

(no subject)

I'm really enjoying the hula lessons (not to be confused with hula-hoop-related workouts) and went to my first ever belly dance lesson today. It was a lot of fun.
There were only 3 students including me and a friend invited along, so it was much easier to follow than say my hula class. It's a little pricey but I think I'll try and go twice  a month. I guess since there are probably gonna be just me and maybe one or two other people in the lesson, it's rather cheap.

I didn't think it was much of a work out but my butt and thighs are hurting. The fact that I cycled an hour out to do hula for 75 mins and then cycled an hour back yesterday might also contribute to that.
Both hula and belly dancing seem to work my arms and shoulders a fair bit too; hopefully after sticking to weekly hula and almost-fortnightly bellly dancing I'll be somewhat more toned.

On the cooking front, I recently made some pretty awesome bread; notably the light rye and sour cream bread, and the spinach and cottage cheese twist. I made naan and tandoori chicken last night for dinner, it was a bit spicey for me, but the yogurt made it good. Next I'm thinking of making choux cremes... mmm... =9

8th Jun, 2009

happy smile

Previously on.. my life...

It's been quite a long time since I last updated.

Still have trouble sleeping occasionally, but generally have been sleeping better.
It's been rather warm on and off; some days I think: "Summer's here ne." Other days I wonder: "What happened? It's so cold again!"
It was really cold for the latter part of last week, but started getting really hot yesterday. Maybe this is when Summer is really here, I don't know, I think I actually prefer the cooler weather.

I went to a hula lesson surrounded by mostly old people, but quite enjoyed it so I signed up. Thinking about making my own pa'u dress.
Also booked myself in for a belly dance lesson, Ayaka, Marvin's girlfriend, said she'd come along too so it should be a bit of fun.

In the time that I've been in Yamanashi, I've met 2 Ayaka's and was told of one more. The first one is really nice and loves to drink; we suspect she might be an actual alcoholic. The second one is Marvin's girlfriend, I really like her; she's really nice and genuine and reminds me of Hui Shien.

Been making bread with the breadmaker but for one reason or another, the bread just doesn't rise... every time the bread just stayed flat and very dense, regardless of how much yeast I put in; I think it's time to get a new packet of yeast.

Make some very chocolatey muffin/cakes; they were meant to be gooey centred but I had them in the oven for just a tad too long and so they weren't gooey any more. The cherries in the middle were a nice addtiion though.

Tried to make corned beef (the lazy way) yesterday with a 500g block of beef. I didn't cure it in brine first just boiled it straight away in brine; it turned out overdone and dry. Since I got two blocks, I tried to just heat up the brine and then just put the second block in and left it in the pot in the thermos thing to cook slowly overnight. That didn't seem to work either. Remembering how the salted pork chunks used to turn out when I was in Australia, I think soaking the block of meat in cold brine first for a night or two should help do some magic to the texture of the meat.

3rd May, 2009

happy smile

(no subject)

After arriving here  and resting for a day, I started promptly at my new school; the furthest one away from home... 1 hour to go there by bus, but 2 hours by train to come back (as buses stop running quite early.)
The week of work new Fuji-Q Highlands went relatively wel; only it's just really really far and really really cold down there.

Last Wednesday was the first day of our Golden Week holiday. We went and had a day of archery with  a bunch of merry people. It was  a lot of fun.

Then we had a couple of days of vegging at home.

Yesterday we went on a 4.5 hour hike with Ayaka (one of the Japanese teachers in the area) in the mountains; beautiful beautiful waterfalls and all; a lovely day indeed.

Got up early this morning and took all the cardboard and bottles and cartons out to the recycling place... yep, unfortunately we  can't just put our the recyclables just out the front in the general garbage collection area like we used to back in Kagoshima.. but I guess it's better than next to no recycling at all like where we lived in Osaka.

22nd Apr, 2009

psyduck

Can't sleep.. so here goes a long ramble...

Finally I am with Paul again in Yamanashi. While I definitely miss Kagoshima, it is great to be under the same roof together again.

I had a taste of living alone for the first time in my life and have found certain aspects of it not so after all. It's hard to be so far apart though, so I don't think I'd ever want to go through something like that again.

The apartment is really messy at the moment because of luggage and boxes and generally lots of stuff everywhere.. need to do some more aggressive turfing I think.

Not sure why I can't sleep.
Maybe it's because of the milky tea I drank just before work (around 4ish)..
Maybe it's the herbal tea I drank when I got home.. or both..
It could be the bed and/or heavy dooner draping over my side of the bed..
Could also be because of the increased background noise; there seems to be a lot more cars going by ( even at this hour..)
Needless to say, there's a lot going through my mind as well; new neighbourhood, new schools, new people, finances, skin trouble... etc.

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25th Mar, 2009

happy smile

new face cleanser and moisturiser

I mixed 4 parts olive oil to 2 parts aloe vera soy bean oil and little bit of rosehip oil in a little plastic bottle (maybe about 20mL) and used it to cleanse my face following the oil cleansing method.
It felt a bit weird because it's so... well... oily... but after putting the warm cloth on my face and wiping off the oil, my face felt quite nice and soft.

My skin's a little on the dry side so I rubbed some rosehip oil on as a moisturiser. In about 5mL of rosehip oil I add 2 or 3 drops of chamomile oil to it; just hope it's not too much.

I'll try and keep track of how this new routine is working for me.
I might go and get some grapeseed oil to mix with the olive oil later.
happy smile

natural hair and skin care

The vinegar hair rinse I made yesterday was amazing!
I just heated up some vinegar with mint and chamomile then let it cool, I know I'm meant to let it steep for a couple of days before I start using it, but I couldn't wait. Anyway, I shampooed my hair as usual but didn't use any conditioner or treatment except the vinegar hair rinse (2 tbsp of the vinegar mixed in a biggish bowl of water.) I was amazed at how soft and smooth my hair felt afterwards.

Gonna make a cleansing oil tonight. The rosehip oil and aloe vera oil I ordered online along with some other stuff arrived today, yay!
I think I'll mix a little of the aloe vera oil and rosehip oil with olive oil with a few drops of chamomile oil to make an oil cleanser for my face.

I went out to the drugstore and bought some lye earlier today, had to write down my name and address on a form to get it.
I'm going to make pure olive oil soap with it. It seems I only need about 45g for the amount of the soap I'm making... I got a bottle of 450g so I guess I'll be making a lot more soap in the future.

I might go and get a bottle of grapeseed oil and make some soap with that. Toying with the idea of putting soy milk in the soap too but still quite a while away before I actually start tinkering with extra ingredients.

24th Mar, 2009

bamboo

limited options

Recently I haven't been able to finish the some of the shows I started watching (online streaming) because they require an updated version of Flash.
I can't even play Scrabble on Facebook now because that also seemed to have upgraded to the newer version of Flash.
I switched to watching shows on other sites, I even paid for a 30day subscription to MegaVideo too, so I don't have to wait an hour every 1.5 episodes... however, it seems they're all heading towards the same verdict.
Hope I don't get shut out of youtube as well..

Good thing I ordered some books from China, they'll keep me occupied.

Maybe it's not so bad afterall; at least I'll be less inclined to stay on the computer the whole day and will probably go to sleep earlier.

22nd Mar, 2009

happy smile

my combs arrived!

I love 'em!


comb

comb made of green sandalwood and buffolo horn


guasha

gua sha "comb" made of buffalo horn

19th Mar, 2009

psyduck

noisy people everywhere

someone is snoring...
someone else is watching TV...
and some other people are chatting (or maybe it's the TV too...

*sigh*

I just want some peace and quiet to sleep.. why is it such a difficult request?
so glad I am not coming back to this hole after this week!

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