We would like to extend the best wishes from our family to yours.
May the New Year bring only good things to all of you!
Our family visited my husband's parents house in Kagoshima prefecture during the New Year's holiday.
We could see his parents after one year.
They were good and glad to see their grandchildren.
We helped them to get ready for the New Year.
My 5-year-old daughter especially helped them a lot.
They raise about twelve Japanese black cattle in front of their house.
She used to be scared of them because they were bigger than her and the black color of their body made her frightened, so I had to carry her when we went through in front of the cattle barn.
But this year, she swept around the cattle barn with a broom and fed them.
I was surprised to see her do this
She brought her small apron and helped her grandmother.
She was so glad to see that her granddaughter helped her a lot.
We paid a visit to a shrine on New Year's Day.
A lot of people were in a long line to worship toward the main building of the Shinto shrine.
My husband and I explained to our children how to pray.
We threw coins into the offering box in front of the main hall, rang the bell, made a bow twice, clapped twice, put our hands together, closed eyes and prayed for our wishes.
We drew Omikuji (a paper fortune).
I picked the "Kichi" (blessing).
In my case, when the prediction is not so good, I fold up the strip of paper and tie it to the wires where we can attach bad fortunes in the shrine grounds.
We enjoyed the kite-flying at the ground near their house.
Kite-flying is one of the popular New Year's activities for children in Japan.
We enjoyed watching the dolphin show.
It was funny that trainer wore Kimono during the show.
This time, we visited Uchinoura Space Center for the first time.
It is a space launch facility established by JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency).
I was impressed that the washrooms inside and outside the facility were well-cleaned and kept comfortable though it is in the countryside.
I could feel residents' effort to welcome tourists.
It was a really nice trip.
We could see our parents and helped them, visit many places and meet relatives.
When we arrived at the Central Japan airport, many Lucky Cats welcomed us at the baggage claim of the domestic arrival.
These Lucky Cats are famous ceramic products of Tokoname city where the airport is located.
My father came to the airport to pick us up, then we went to my parents house to stay one night.
My sister and her husand came to our parents house yesterday morning and had lunch together.
After lunch, we enjoyed playing "Donjyara" together.
It is a picture matching game like mah‐jongg for families.
I wrote about Donjyara my previous post : http://a-o-j-m.blogspot.jp/search?q=donjyara )
We got very involved in the game.
It was really fun!
My son turned seven during the New Year's vacation.
He got presents from his grandparents and aunt.
He also enjoyed painting a dinosaur figure which he bought with his Otoshidama (New Year's money) which I gave him.
The dinosaur was white at first and children can enjoy painting it using acrylic paints which are packed together.
Everyone in our family was surprised at his sense of color!
A long New Year's vacation will end soon.
I will be happy if you visit my blog again this year!
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