Thursday, September 30, 2010

Thousand Islands


There is a famous place in NY called "Thousand Islands." Actually, there are over 1,800 islands. They are near the border between America and Canada in the St. Lawrence Seaway to Lake Ontario. You can take a boat tour at Alexandria Bay on the NY side of the border.
We didn't need passports to take the tour.We took a "Luncheon  cruise"; we enjoyed seeing a lot of houses in both the American and Canadian sections of Thousand Islands.

We enjoyed beautiful scenery on the deck as follows.

This is a lighthouse; it is the only thing on the island.

It is very interesting to see only that cute house on the island.


At the end of the cruise, the boat stopped at Heart Island where Mr. Boldt tried to have a castle built for his wife. It is called "Boldt Castle." Unfortunately his wife passed away, so he told his workers stop constructing it. He hasn't lived here, but The Thousand Islands Bridge Authority began a rehabilitation program in 1977. We can see inside the castle.

ボルト城 The Boldt Castle

He had also an enormous yacht house near Heart Island, called Wellesley Island. We enjoyed seeing a collection of antique wooden yachts inside.

ヨットハウス His Yacht House

Mr. Boldt is responsible for making "Thousand Island" salad dressing popular and famous! He put the dressing on the menu of the restaurant in the Waldorf Astoria, which he owned.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Japanese & American Daughters


My daughter is the same age as Amanda. They live by themselves respectively. One day my daughter sent me an email with a picture of her dinner. I thought that she was happy and proud of cooking the perfect Japanese dinner.


I also enjoy Amanda's blog where she puts a picture of her perfect American dinners on every post . I felt I was very lucky because I can enjoy pictures of two types of meals: American and Japanese dinners that young ladies cook.
It is very interesting to learn the difference in diet between Japanese and Americans. I feel I have two daughters - one in Japan and one in the U.S.A.


Amanda served me cute toast when I had an English lesson one day. They were very pretty and their size was good for the time between breakfast and lunch.


My daughter takes a bread baking class in Japan. She has already baked a lot of kinds of bread. This is a kind of bread she baked. This is melon flavored breads. They are very delicious when they have been just baked and are also delicious when they have gotten cool.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Cherry Tomatoes ~ ミニ トマトの栽培


I have grown cherry tomato plants in my back yard this year like last year. This year's seedlings had grown bigger than last year's and we got two times more tomatoes than last year thanks to many sunny days this summer or because I put fertilizer in the soil every week. I picked about 40 tomatoes at one time, and I did it over ten times. That means that I picked over 400 tomatoes this summer. I was very surprised to realize this. The tomato plants stopped growing, have fewer tomatoes, and the size of the tomatoes is smaller now in September.
I planted cucumbers for the first time this year.  I was glad that I got five cucumbers!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


日本ではNHK/BSで2006年に放送された”20世紀の名住宅物語”6回シリーズの第1回目として紹介されたそうです。ナショナルジオグラッフィック誌の"50 places of a lifetime"の中にも載ったそうです。

My husband and I visited Fallingwater in the suburbs of Pittsburgh. This house was designed by an architect named Frank Lloyd Wright in 1935 as a vacation house of a owner of a department store. The man's name was Mr. Edgar Kaufmann. It is amazing that the house was built on a waterfall. It is open to the public now.

NHK/BS showed this house in the first episode in a 6-part series called "The Most Remarkable Houses of the 20th Century" in 2006 in Japan and it was named one of the "50 places of a lifetime" by National Geographic Traveler in the U.S.A.

We enjoyed the trail and the changing colors of  the fall leaves while walking through the big property. It was very beautiful.

After we walked the trail for about 10 minutes, we saw the stone house.
This is the front of the house, and we can't see the falls. After we finished looking around inside the house, we went to the back ...

We saw this beautiful scene. The house was built on the waterfall.
It is in harmony with nature; it is excellent!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Driving a car~車の運転


Each state in the U.S.A. has their own traffic laws, but some things are the same in all states, like we can turn right on red after stopping for caution.  
I was scared it until I was accustomed to driving the car. I learned that the rule is very reasonable.


I was impressed with the law, too; the cars around school buses must stop when it puts the signal (they have stop signs on their sides) up for stopping. It is a good law because it protects children from cars.


We have center lanes in many wide roads for turning left: with these center lanes, we don't have to wait until the car in front of us turns left.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Quarters~ アメリカ50州コイン


I collected the 50 state quarters. I hadn't found the Wyoming quarter for a long time. I got it finally, and it completed the 50 state quarter collection. I enjoyed it because each coin was designed to show a feature from its state.

We have many kinds of collector's albums like this in bookstores.

Monday, September 13, 2010

The U.S.A.


I thought, "Everything is very big," when I came to the U.S.A. The scale of everything is so much bigger than in Japan. Houses are big, roads are wide, supermarkets are big and shopping carts are big.

At first, every time I saw the garbage cans, I wondered how people would throw the garbage from the garbage can to the truck. I was shocked when my garbage was collected for the first time, and I thought, "It is the U.S.A." The man hung the garbage can on the truck, then it was turned upside down and came back automatically.

Everything is very interesting for me in this foreign country; even if it is normal or small or natural in the U.S.A.


I am not yet accustomed to giving tips. My husband does it for me when we take a trip or go to a restaurant. I sometimes had to do it myself, but sometimes I forget. For example, I went to a flower shop to buy flowers for hanging. I like flowers very much. The staff was very kind; many flowers were hanging on the ceiling, so he took them down and showed them to me, then he brought it to the register and to my car.

I told him "Thank you very much." I noticed that I forgot to tip him. I thought I would follow him and give the tip to him, but I had to open my purse and open my wallet and by this time, he had gone into the shop. I regretted that I couldn't do it naturally and smoothly. I thought I always should put many dollors in my pocket to have them ready for whenever I need to tip someone. It is difficult to tip smoothly.

Denver, Colorado ~ コロラド州デンバー


I took a trip from Buffalo to Denver, Colorado.  This post will be about traveling in Denver instead of living in Buffalo! I liked the "Garden of  the Gods." I was moved that huge red rocks stood to the sky; they were very powerful and they looked like many shapes from different directions.

神々の庭  Garden of the Gods
Seven Falls is only one waterfall, but it looks like seven falls that are connected.  I climbed 185 stairs to the top of the observation deck.

 七つ滝  Seven Falls

パイクスピーク登山鉄道。歯車を使った登山鉄道では世界で一番高い所に登るといわれています。 標高4300mのパイクス・ピークを約1時間かけて登ります。窓からの景色を楽しみました。

Pike's Peak Cog railway; this is a train that moves with cog wheels. It is the highest cog wheel train in the world!  It took us about an hour to reach the peak (14,107ft) of the mountain, Pikes Peak. We enjoyed the view out the window.

We started off from this station and came back from the mountain to this station, too.


I had another great experience. I enjoyed very delicious sushi in Denver. I also ate delicious nigiri, but it was so delicious, I forgot to take a picture. It was called "Spider Roll." It was a roll of fried crab with lettuce and  other things.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Japanese "handy towel" & American "dish cloths"



I always have a handy towel in my purse in Japan. One day, I noticed that I didn't use it when I went out since I came to Buffalo. I used it when I washed my hands in a restroom in Japan.  There is soap and paper towels in the restrooms in the airport, shops, restaurants and supermarkets - they have these things everywhere in the United States.




I wanted to bring American handy towels to my friends as souvenirs when I took a trip back to Japan.  I felt very sorry because I couldn't find them, so I showed them to Amanda and I asked where to buy them.
She asked me, "What is this for?" I was so surprised by her words. I learned that Americans don't need them. She added that her mother might have used a similar cloth - a handkerchief - when she was young. She suprised me by saying, "If I got a Japanese handy towel as a souvenir from Japan, I would not be sure if it is for washing dishes or wiping my glasses. I wouldn't imagine that it is for drying my hands."

私が持っているタオルハンカチ(These are my handy towels)

その話から日本では見たことがない物があることも判明。(私が知らないだけ?)それは食器を洗うための布巾。これはコットンだったりタオルだったり。これが結構大きくて 約33cm×33cmもあります。

From this conversation, I learned about American dish cloths. I haven't seen them in Japan. (Maybe they are in Japan and I have just not seen them) They are made of cotton cloth. It is big - 13in×13in.

アメリカの食器洗い用布巾(These are dish cloths)

Daily life~ 日々の生活

Here is my mailbox. The postal truck collects letters from each house; I need to set up the red flag like this. How convenient!

Here is the vegetable section of a supermarket. We weigh vegetables and put the price label on them for the register.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

American Girl & American Doll Boutique

ある日、アマンダが「お母さんはお人形用のブティックを持っているの」・・その話から始まり、アメリカの女の子たちが自分の分身のように大事にしている人形が色々あることを知りました。そのうちの一つにAmerican Girl という人形があります。肌の色から目の色、髪の毛の色まで自分そっくりの人形を選ぶことができるそうです。サンディは毎年秋から冬にかけて開かれる各地のクラフトショーに自分の作った人形の洋服を出品しています。是非、彼女のサイトをご覧ください(英文の中)。そこを訪れていくつか服を買ってみたくて私もネットでAmerican Girl を買ってみました。私の人形は双子の一人で、双子の私の子供のころに少しだけ似ています。初めてサンディのサイトを見たときにはその洋服の数の多さとセンスの良さに感動しました。

One day, Amanda told me, "My mother has a doll clothes boutique." I learned about popular dolls in America.  One kind of doll is the American Girl doll.  They are dolls for American girls: many girls treat their doll like another person like them.
They select the same skin color, same eye color and same hair color as themselves. Amanda's mother, Sandie makes clothes and sells them at craft shows from fall through winter.  She has a website where she can sell her clothes and people can see her craft show schedule.
I bought the doll online, as  I wanted to visit her shop in craft shows. My doll is one of a pair of twins. I am a twin, too and she looks a little like I did when I was a child. When I saw Sandie's site for the first time, I was moved by the numerous clothes and her talent. She has good taste!

Here is my doll, Nontan, with her new clothes that Sandie made.

This is Sandie's shop in a craft show in last fall; she had great success!