Sunday, November 3, 2013

Monday, October 21, 2013

Golden Mountain Perfection

Fall leaves, golden sun, a tinsy bit of snow… Amber and I lucked out with all of the perfect ingredients to mess around with for a fun fall photo play-day.

(Just to clarify, snow is only permissible right now to make things look pretty. Otherwise, it is entirely unacceptable. And now that we’re done taking pictures, it should go away.)

Amber got an awesome camera on her birthday, so we’d been wanting to get out on a photo adventure together and I finally made it down to Provo with my camera the other weekend. It was the perfect fall day, so her roomie Erin was wise to tag along. Just see for yourself!


See right there? That is what we call golden fall perfection. It’s a scientific term.

IMG_0276  IMG_0266

It needed to be played in.


And that included bubbles. Look at what a graceful team they make.

IMG_0365  IMG_0373

It was the perfect opportunity for Amber to put her new camera to good use!

IMG_0377  IMG_0308

There was also lots of good roommate bonding…


but the spiders weren’t quite as friendly looking. (Maybe we should have given them more of a chance?)

IMG_0427  IMG_0401

But still, with the somehow simultaneously dusty-yet-muddy roads leading us to fresh air, it was quite lovely.

The whole bunch, for those with time to waste (or those who are avoiding doing more productive things):

And for Amber’s take on things, you can check her blog out.


And a Happy Halloween Season to you!

*Song of the day = Daylight by Matt & Kim

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Burritos and General Conference Happiness

It’s General conference season, and it has brought my beloved mission companion Airi back to Utah! You wouldn’t think she lives thousands of miles away in Okinawa since I’ve seen her twice already in the few months we’ve been home.

She’d been planning on coming here for a work conference and General Conference with her mom since back when we were still serving together in Sapporo. At the time I didn’t know that I would be here too, so it worked out fantastically!

We tried to get in to conference in the standby line with her mom and two friends from Japan since they only have translation in the actual conference center and we kind of made it in. As in we sat on couches in the lobby. But they got translation, so it was all good. Afterwards we ate delicious burritos from a taco cart. Yep.

2013-10-05 16.43.25

2013-10-05 16.43.32

2013-10-05 16.43.59 2013-10-05 17.49.02

We also had a couple of mission reunions, so it was great to get to hang out with everyone again!


I love conference season. There are only good feelings! Tomorrow I’m going to snuggle into my couch and watch this online (so convenient):

Hope you’re having a fantastic weekend!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Celebrating 22 Years of Fun

This past Thursday was my wonderful sister Amber’s birthday! So today when she came down to visit (because she’s nice and comes to me since I don’t have a car) we had a fantastic excuse to eat a special lunch at nearby Gourmandise.


Because it was a special occasion we treated ourselves to tasty white chocolate & fresh strawberry frappes…



and delicious sandwiches. I highly recommend it!


It was kinda funny though because since it is so close we decided to walk and while on the way there it was a beautiful perfect fall morning…


On the way back it was a little different!

A good rainstorm can always be refreshing though. Overall, a beautiful day! And it isn’t even over yet.

Thanks for being born, Amber!

*song of the day = Ghosts by The National Parks, Amber’s friend’s band!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A Japanese Hike: Mt. Maruyama

After a long wait, I am back with another lost entry about Japan! Coming up this time: my last p-day.

For some reason when I left on my mission I had the image of p-day equaling mountain hiking. It took me until the end of my mission to finally be able to fulfill my dream (I was always in a far away area. Or it was snowing. Pesky snow), but it was worth it and I feel like I definitely need to share!

We climbed Mt. Maruyama, which is in the huge Maruyama park in Sapporo. It wasn’t too long, but fairly steep and provided us with a great view.


We started off at the mission home…


Journeyed through the park to the starting point…


Walked up and up and up…



And got to see a great view of the city of Sapporo!




Maybe we played a little up there too.




And made it back down with a mission hiking goal accomplished! (There are many more mountains though, so I might have to go back…)

In case there weren’t enough pictures for you:

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Everyone is in Salt Lake

Ok, maybe that isn’t entirely true (or true at all), but we did have a mini Sapporo Mission reunion last week! Oh, and I now live in Salt Lake City, by the way. I’m having a great time working for KSL news writing for their website (thanks Cait!). But more on that later.

I had perfect timing for my move, because last week my last companion Kise Shimai (now known by her first name, Airi) came out to Utah from Japan for Cooper Shimai’s wedding reception. It provided the perfect excuse for everyone to get together. We had lots of fun catching up while wandering Temple Square.


Most of our conversation may have been about deciding what to call each other – it is so weird to know each other so well, and yet not really know each other’s first names! During the mission we always just use Elder and Sister “last name,” so calling someone by their first name seemed super unnatural after a couple of years of that. The funniest was when Elder Hansen and Sister Cooper (see? Still can’t use first names) were going in for a light goodbye hug – while it was happening Elder Hatch called out “Hey Parker, let’s go” and Cooper Shimai was all “Who’s Parker?” and Elder Hansen said “that’s me” as they closed the hug. You probably had to be there, but I just about died laughing.


















It was so great to see everyone again!

By the way, I find the fact that I haven’t blogged at all this month to be entirely shameful when I still have so much that I need to cover. I definitely started drafting a post on the back of a receipt… but then I lost it amid the moving mess that has settled on my desk. I think there’s some room for improvement.

*song = Savior, Redeemer of My Soul from my last mission concert. It’s a mission post, so a mission song is required, right? Plus, Budge Shimai’s voice is like warm butter that melts the soul. (Just don’t watch me. Much thanks)

Sunday, July 7, 2013

The Journey Home

Friday morning, at the lovely hour of 5:30 a.m., the six of us returning missionaries said adieu to the mission home for the last time. The Japanese missionaries and American missionaries had flights at different times, but we all headed to Sapporo’s Chitose airport at the same time with the mission president and his wife, and then the Assistants to the President. It was kind of funny because with the time change, I departed from the Chitose airport at 7:50 a.m. on Friday morning, and then arrived in Portland at 8:20 a.m. … on the same Friday!

Here are some pictures of the in-between:



One of my favorite people just happened to have a flight the same day! It was way fun to meet once more at the airport.



The trip was actually pretty funny because we seemed to keep gaining people as we progressed – first we ran into a man working on the construction of the Sapporo Temple. Then we found Collins Shimai (pictured above), one of our MTC roommates on her way home from the Japan Sendai mission, at the baggage check counter. Next, while we were waiting at the gate we were joined by a huge group of missionaries coming home from the Philippines who had a layover in Tokyo. Not to mention meeting other members who were traveling from all over places, like a cute family living in China going home to Utah for a vacation. It was a party!


We were in the Tokyo airport for five hours, so we made friends with a rolly-cart, looked at the shops and ate a nice lunch outside while watching planes take off. It was really weird for all of us to have so much time to kill! That’s not something that happens during mission life, so we may have compulsively looked at our watches most of the time. But it was super nice to slow down a bit and just relax.


Northrop Shimai and I got to fly into the same airport since she is from Vancouver, Wash., so that was fun too. (The gate says “Portland” in Japanese)


And faster than you could imagine, we were home!

(But don’t worry, more catch-up Japan posts coming soon. Stay tuned!)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...