5-29 I was able to go to church today, and I got to take communion. It will be one I will never forget in Japanese. Every time I go to church (only 3x now) since I have been traveling with jake, but each time I go I have to hold back the tears listening to them sing. It's so amazing to me how beautiful the songs are in another language. Taking communion here was very touching.. It was so different, yet the same. I have never appreciated it as much as I did today as I have found a new appreciation for God and what He has been doing in our lives since moving to Japan. His grace has shown over and over again for my family, and I'm so thankful to have found a church. I will say I will be running into Harvest, and we will have a new appreciation for a lot of things when we get home. Right now I'm happy. I made myself go to "life group" with some other moms, and as hard as the language barrier is and the girl leading it is Spanish knows no Japanese it's pretty tough. we each go around share a verse for the week, and something that happened that week or anything really. I actually spoke, and know these ladies will love on me and pray for me. I need that. We all do! I had to laugh one lady came up to me so excited and she was like "brigumm wife??! Brigumm??" I had the hardest time understanding yet sooo excited to share she prays for my husband, and the biggest fan. She is a season ticket holder, and asked for my picture (so so odd) but very sweet lady and I cannot imagine if Jake is ever able to attend now that people are somewhat realizing what he does. It will be okay! I invited our pastor and his wife, and another friend to the game before we started traveling and we had a lot of fun! The pastor is our age (28) and actually lived in Texas the same time we did!! He went to school for culinary then after the huge tsunami disaster started to work for Samaritans purse and helping with that
It is crazy how big of a deal baseball is here and I still am not used to people knowing who we are everywhere we go. People are very sweet and sometimes won't come up to Jake since he is with us. If any of you are still wanting to give for strikeouts from Jake's season I just wanted to let you know we are donating personally to Liz's Legacy, in honor of Elizabeth Stokes. A very close friend of Jake and I who passed away last year. We have known her family my entire life, and she was one of the first people to ever meet Jake and "approve him" for me to date. Her foundation is helping children in central Florida who can't afford to get counseling, and that is what Liz did as her profession as well as a huge heart always in helping children and donating her time! We love and miss you Liz everyday and if you want to give to an amazing cause this one is it! I will keep you up to date on the best way to donate directly to her foundation! Our goal is 100 strikeouts. Jake has 18 in the majors, and 19 in minors (37 total)
I feel so comfortable here now. I have now learned the grocery stores, I have my routine, can ride the trains alone, travel to Tokyo alone. Even though I can't talk to literally anyone I feel pretty normal (minus the stares.) I'm so comfortable in our place, and in Sendai. Some days I feel Japanese because I'm doing so well getting around. Lol . It's a beautiful city and now getting used to no car and walking everywhere. I ride my bike a lot too! I was able to travel with Jake twice to Tokyo. We took Stella to Disney Sea on our off day Monday, and a few weeks ago to Disneyland! We had a blast since Stella is so into it now! I made it through an 11 day road trip! Phew it was tough, but luckily we should be together most of June! There are still some things that are really hard, but overall we have adjusted.
Jake was sent down AGAIN.. My dad officially hates baseball every time I talk with him. I'm so used to this that I'm not worried. This move was not because he did bad because he pitched amazing out of the bullpen, but now they want him to start again. I'm so glad he pitched as well as he did because this is only good for his "resume" and being exposed. He now has shown he can start, and he can long relief, or middle reliever. Jake is excited to go back to starting so they want to build him up. Our team needs some help in starting pitching we have lost like 9 in a row.. Eek
I have been asked if there are other families on our team and yes, originally Gomes and his wife were out here, but some things happened and they ended up leaving about a month ago. This isn't for everyone I can tell you that! I have another American girl on our team with 3 kids, but we just have opposite schedules. Her kids are in school all week, and just different schedules. It is crazy because most American players who do play here with 2+ kids have full time nanny they bring either from America or here. They live with them, or will get them an apartment. I know in the big leagues I would see a nanny as well, but here it's more of a common thing since it's so hard to travel alone. The other two Americans on the team are married, but the wives don't travel here, they stay back in the states. We never see the Japanese wives at the games. I know have met a few in the family room. I don't think they sit us together either, at least from what I can tell. I have only been to maybe 4 or 5 games home! It's insane how little I go because Jake is either home or on the road. Now that he is going back to starting he will be home again every night after 1st or 2nd inning! Woohoo! Perks of a starter!
A few random facts and notes:
No one wears engagement rings (just a band for wedding)
A pedicure is over $100 and don't even get your feet rubbed or anything just polish.
Births no epidurals-see ya Japan if I ever get pregnant! Haha no baby here for us!
The bullet train for Stella and I to get around if going to Tokyo is around $150 one way.
The players get fight money which is cool so if jake is "hero" of the game you get money (jake hasn't been it yet)
Hotels you pay by person (so annoying)
People smoke in restaurants
Still a ton of restrooms have the hole in ground, and Japanese people prefer that over a regular toilet from what we can tell.
No paper towels or blowers in the bathrooms after you wash your hands. So I wipe it on Stella or jake.
Chocolate ice cream is hard to come by and blueberries!
Watermelon and cantaloupe is still $65-100
People sleep in the trains and then jump up at their exit. I feel like most are sleeping on the trains!
Elementary school age children carry this one backpack I had to look it up and it's $500!! Everyone has one too! Mind blown!
They tow bikes if Parked in wrong place like cars back home or tickets
We love you all and thanks for following along on our adventure!