Sorry I have been MIA the past 2 weeks! Will and I have been pretty busy but I'm going to do my best to catch you up.
After we got back from our ski trip and seeing the snow monkeys, Will and I were enrolled in the mandatory orientation class on base. It is called ICR (intercultural relations) and everyone who arrives here in Japan must take it. We learned useful japanese phrases, how to pronounce the alphabet correctly without a southern accent attached, how to hold chopsticks (still working on that one), and all the fun places to visit while we live in Japan! The best part about the class for us though was getting our drivers license. We were so relieved to know that we wouldn't have to be "that needy couple" anymore always asking for rides. Once the class was over on Friday, Will and I went straight to a car dealership right outside of base and bought this bad boy…
|Brent, Josh, Hunter, Andrew and Will|
Tuesday, February 3rd we woke up to the most exciting text message from Wills sister (and my sister) Marylou. She was going to be induced and baby Daniel would be making his arrival soon! Marylou told us that she and her husband Joe were pregnant on our drive home from the beach after fourth of July weekend last year. We have been SO excited to see this angel and he was finally on his way! Since we are a day ahead in Japan it was the 3rd for us but sweet baby Daniel was born on Monday, February 2 and stole our hearts right away!
Daniel Thomas Rawling
February 2, 2015
6 lbs 15 oz
Obviously it is pretty bittersweet for us being in Japan so far away from him, but we could not be more excited to be an Aunt and Uncle again to such a PRECIOUS and gorgeous little boy. We love you Marylou and Joe and know you will be the best parents in the world. We love you sweet Daniel and promise to FaceTime you as you grow these next few years!
Friday Will and I lucked out and got a reservation at the New Sanno hotel in Tokyo. When I say we lucked out I mean this hotel is booked every weekend until next year. Thankfully they had a last minute cancellation and we grabbed it right away. The New Sanno is a military hotel that has normal bedrooms with beds, where as most other hotels in Japan have tatami rooms which means you sleep on a mat on the floor. Needless to say we were very happy to stay here and it was absolutely gorgeous inside.
Saturday we woke up and took a short train to an area called Omotesando in Tokyo. I was in heaven because everywhere you looked there was shopping. We spent hours just exploring and looking in just about every store on the street.
|Side street that reminded me of Chinatown|
From here we wanted to do some sight seeing so we walked to the Meiji Shrine. It is a shrine built and dedicated to the late Japanese emperor Meiji and his wife. It was so peaceful and so beautiful, including the mile walk to get there. Here are a few pictures from the our visit.
|The entrance to the Meiji Shrine|
|You have to rinse your hands before entering|
Tokyo is still in the lead for one of our favorite places in the world. We have only been to 2 different parts of Tokyo and still have a list of others we want to explore. I wake up almost everyday so thankful and so amazed that we get to live here. We miss our family and friends all the time, but getting to experience this country makes it a tad bit easier to get through. Thank you for all the love, prayers and support! We are doing so well and still have so much more to see!
We love you all!
Caroline and Will