The second Monday in January was a holiday in Japan. My friends, who know lots about Japan since they’ve been there longer than I have, invited me to go to a mochitsuki with them at a temple near their apartment (and my new apartment!). As a lover of mochi¬†and Japanese traditions, I was super excited about this. So, even though I woke up to horrible weather (including snow!), I was still excited to venture out.

There are several temples where we could have gone to see this tradition, but because this one was so small, we were the only gaijin there. And as we were it, everyone was super excited to have us be a part of things. It was amazing. We got to pound the rice. We got to roll mochi balls. We got to take a tour of the temple and were taught a traditional prayer. It was incredible.
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Holiday in Japan = Sake!

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my birthday – japan style

I have lots of blogging to catch up on. A trip to the states, lots of birthday celebrating, etc, etc. But this weekend, instead of doing that, I was busy getting my karaoke on and relaxing after a really stressful week at work. So, for now, I’m going to give you this little gem from my first birthday dinner with my friends here in Japan. I have to thank Chelsea for encouraging me to go ahead and let them do the whole singing thing. So. Worth. It.

happy birthday!

Today is both my brother’s and my niece’s birthday. I no longer have any siblings in their twenties! (That makes me feel old.) Anyway, they are both fabulous and I’m sad that I could be with them on their birthday, but I thought about them lots today…and at least they get to be with each other (they aren’t from the same family), so that’s fun for them.

I would write longs lists about everything that I love about them, but I’m exhausted, and one can’t read and the other one knows I love him, so instead, here is a video for all to enjoy…just because!

musical monday (a day late?)

So, Sarah, Emily, Heidi and I headed to Salt Lake on Saturday to see the Hotel Cafe Tour. It was a great show.

Cary Brothers

The song in this video (and it’s not complete) is called Honestly.

My favorite song is probably Ride.

Meiko performing Reasons to Love You. Her album is rad!

Cary Brothers feat. Ingrid Michaelson, covering The Thompson Twins classic (do they have classics?), If You Were Here.

A little Ingrid on her own performing The Hat.

Dan Wilson (lead singer of Semisonic) performing Easy Silence (made famous by the Dixie Chicks).

Some combined singing in the crowd…it was kind of amazing.

Despite a crappy beginning, my weekend turned out just fine. Oh, and…it turns out I totally went to high school with the drummer. He didn’t remember me (nice…I’d love to say it was the alcohol, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t), but my weird memory never forgets anyone.

*Yes Shannon, I did totally copy your idea. Just remember, imitation is the highest form of flattery…or so they say.

the end

If you are visiting from Runners’ Lounge, just check out the training segment (video number three). This is a quick (and funny) what not to do when training for your distance races. If you are preparing for your first long race and want a little knowledge about what it’s like (if you are slow and under trained), you can check out my other videos on this post and this post.

For the rest of you, just a warning before watching. All of these are kind of offensive. I sing in two of them (and it’s awful, out of breath, out of tune singing) and swear in one, and there’s a crazy old guy dancing in another. If you don’t want to watch them, that’s okay. They give even me nightmares. Although, the “training” video is pretty funny.

My personal favorite…the training segment. (Not for young ears…don’t tell my dad). My other favorite thing is the lame-o behind us at the end, hoping for 10 seconds of fame. Where? I don’t know. It’s not like my blog is going to make her famous. I have never understood people like that.

This is just some nut dancing at the end of the race. It’s kind of long and, at first, you can’t see him. But I still wanted to share.

Here we all are, the morning after; exhausted from both the race and our crazy hike after it (yes…we thought hiking to Delicate Arch would be a good idea).

Anne’s parents are my favorite. Seriously. They were fabulous for the marathon (the full in St. George) and it was so fun to drive up to Anne’s house and see this sign in the window! Thank you! Thank you!

And with that, I end my half-marathon posts (I still have some Moab stuff). I hope you have enjoyed the video journey of an under trained runner. If this has not convinced you to train before attempting distance races, I’m not sure what would. Although, hopefully, you can tell that I was enjoying myself.