Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Kimono for a Day

I am on a new computer!  It is very smooth, quick to respond!  But I'll tell you what I miss about my old one, the assurance that I know what I am doing! ...I still have some getting used to to do.

Last month there was a coming of age day at the beginning of the month.  Now, E is getting ready for next year's, when she takes part in the ceremony.  Many people, we were informed, start in with the kimono rental from September, two years prior to the year, to get the best kimono prints.  I am sure they are either very wealthy or distant relatives of the royal family!  We got started Monday when E made an appointment with a sales lady at a kimono rental place.  (I didn't answer that phone call!)

This is the first kimono she tried on of three.  The reason she is not smiling is because she is a jock at heart, and not really into dress up, but she must feel the need  to comply with society.  I promise it was fun in that we have the same taste in color coordination so that we decided each little piece in agreement, which felt really good!

I digress, to prefix my own personal feelings on the matter of this kimono rental business, that it is simply too costly, making me feel guilty for such decadant excess, especially the way the girls these days 'dress up' the kimonos, running the cost into thousands of dollars for a days rental, waay to much, even if it includes a photo shoot.  (If you are able to put the thing on yourself, no easy feat, you can wear it as much as you like from the period of the photo shoot to the day after the ceremony when it has to be returned)  Probably girls turning of age wore the kimono passed down from generation to generation in the family on this festive day, but due to westernization kimonos are worn less and less enabling the rental company to build up a booming business for this 'once in a life time' event.  Only young girls can wear the furi sode, or longed sleeve kimonos, probably only to 26 years of age or so!


The obis are beautiful!  They clip it up on the neckline to preview it first.  Of coarse it is usually worn around the waist.  E was getting very tired after just one try on which took a full hour because well the sales lady had to try out all the 'options'.  I couldn't believe that strip of cloth, beautiful though it was, would add 13,000 yen to the price! I told E to listen carefully to those numbers, whether it was an option or not.  Being able to communicate in English with her has never been so convenient.  Even though she doesn't say much in English, she CAN understand me.  The black one to the right above was beautiful but the sales people emphasized that she can wear such traditional prints later in life, now is the only time she can wear 'young and cute'!

This is the kimono she chose (above), this is naked compared to the final outcome.

See how they deck it out.  I chose the black one to show you here.
It took six hours from start to finish. We were both worn out, but E was the one who had been through wearing them, I almost wanted to ask her if she was really up to this!!  The actual day will be grueling! Kimomos aren't known for their comfort. But all her friends will be doing it too... 

She is a working girl now, she agreed to pay for most of it herself.  It is the independant thing to do!  She 'held down' the price to just over 200,000, over 2000 dollars, what I would do with 2000 dollars!  It certainly wouldn't involve wearing a kimono!  We also took time to work out payment plan, they have something that with no added interest you can pay six months down the line around bonus time!  That will give her plenty of time to save up for it!

I'll make sure to blog photos of the actual day.  We plan on having a family photo taken probably on the photo shoot day in May, why, we haven't had one of those taken since, well since E's other ceremonial day when she was six...   How many blogs can I get in between now and E's next year coming of age ceremonies? Ha ha, we'll seeGood day all!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Morning Sun

Morning sun seems to be my theme these days.  It is so hopefull, full of bright anticipation.  These days I feel like life is kicking me in the ass, but today's morning sun made me forget all such notions, giving me a lightness I haven't felt in a while, the sky is the limit!! 

Irritation has been what is eating me, mostly at my kids, some at my husband, which leads to irritation at my general situation. My animals are alright, except for my doggy who is getting so old that he is a total whimp and won't walk past the kitty in the hallway for fear that he will attack him (playfully, as usual), so barks to be saved.  I don't know why I have so little tolerance for my canine pet whom I love very much, but maybe it is because I have to be utmost kind to my FIL who really can't help any of it, but then neither can my doggie...  I guess I can get away with telling off a senile doggie, something I can't do to the human who is even more senile than the doggy.  Anyway my cat is perfect, he doesn't give a hoot about anyone but himself and comes lovingly to my lap for a cudde several times a day.  He is opposite his disposition, soft, warm, more soft, and more warm, that's all I need is something soft, warm and lovelable, but he lets me know the stove is just as good company!  Not needy or clingy, refreshing, I have no qualms about pushing him away when I need to get moving, the way it should be!

E is driving now, it is working out alright, even with our one car.  Like right now she is off with the car having lunch then running errands and she promised to come back in time for when I need the car this afternoon.  When we are communicating everything is just fine, but then she still stays out all night without a word and when I chase her in the morning with a text message/s then she returns with a shortened version of a sentence with incomplete words which I get the meaning of but wish I didn't so that I could retort back 'What the hell are you saying???'.  Cutting short everything like I am not worth the effort of speaking in complete sentences with complete words to, and I am none the wiser for where she is.  OK so she is alright, I tell myself I have to be thankful for that.  I believe it when they say that future kids aren't going to be able to talk, only text (incomplete words and sentences)  ARRGH!!!  I can't wait till she starts work then she will have to settle down.  Today I asked her what she did over the weekend and she told me and it was alright, see? See the difference communicating makes?  If she could just tell me what she is doing, or going to do so that I KNOW and don't have to worry it woud make all the difference.

Morning sun of yet another day.

And it shines!

J has been going to cram school to get ready for the entrance exams.  Most everyone has taken them but he is one who his teacher at cram school wanted time with to prepare so is scheduled for one of the last tests.  I finally got him to go on his own, was riding out with him on our bikes, but always losing him because he refuses to listen to his Mom.  So he can go on his own, now, four days a week thirty minutes one way, but then he plays hookie!  So we don't give him too hard a time about it but he promises he won't do it again so we don't dock his allowance.  He has to go Sunday too, and his Dad was working all day yesterday so it was my job to get him going.  He decides he isn't going to go until a certain hour even though the teacher told me she likes him to come early on Sundays.  It started looking like rain and no amount of trying to get him out the door early would do.  To make a long story short, (I know, already too long!) he left at three thirty and didn't get back til eight and he studied for forty five minutes of this time.  He came back drenched, but happy because he'd spent most of the time reading comics in a convenience store!  My kids are driving me crazy!  I will be so very thankful when March 1st and then March fourth roll around.  March 1st is E's first day of work, and March Fourth is J's entrance exam.  Please hurry!

And then I had a huge fight with hubby.  I guess it was stuff that needed to get out.  I lost it a couple of times with him.  But this time he actually got what I was trying to tell him, I honestly think it is the first time for this to happen through one of our fights.  I guess it takes 23 years of fighting!

So this is a little taste of my life of late.  I know that my son was not born to cause me pain, although sometimes it feels like it.  I know that my daughter is actually growing up although the process is a little slow for my liking at times.  I am in pursuit of a better me, as I stumble and fall again and again particularly with my family.  With E home alot during week days I don't get alot of my own work done, yeah go ahead and blame it on her!  (Mostly it is the TV she always has it on so it draws me away) BUT I am re-working old pieces of mine and sending them out for another spin. 

Today, with the morning sun I felt washed anew!  It is a chance to feel better and get on with it.  Thank God for these moments, and the morning sun shining bright!  For the next blog I plan on getting some plum blossoms in bloom, imagine what they could do for me!