Live and Learn

We bought a Japanese bread-maker after Christmas. We finally opened it last week, and I proudly made my way through the whole Japanese instruction book. The first batch I followed the “speedy” recipe and made wheat bread. OOOOHH…it smelled soooo good.
But it flopped. It was too wheaty…too thick…too- something.

So when our friend Yasko came over, I went back through the instruction book with her to make sure I was getting all the ingredients right. We concluded it must have been the combination of speedy and wheat, and that night I tried again, getting all fancy-shmancy and even using the timer so that it would finish at 7:45 the next morning, in time for our breakfast.

It smelled so delicious as we were waking up. When I came downstairs, Eric just shook his head. Once again – all the right smells; none of the right shapes or textures.

Later that morning I was talking to my friend MaryJo. She got out her breadmaker instruction book and was reading through the troubleshooting section. Not enough flour maybe?

And then it dawned on me. I was measuring the flour American-style rather than Japanese-style. I was using measuring cups; Japanese measure dry ingredients by weight, using a kitchen scale. I was only adding 2/3 the right amount of flour.
Live and learn. Sometimes you have to make a few bad loaves of bread to get it right. The third loaf not only smelled good, but it came out perfect.

Annie had been praying for snow. We had a few light coverings, but it never “stuck”, so Annie kept praying. Her prayers were answered the same morning as the perfect batch of bread emerged…It had snowed all Friday night, and continued snowing on Saturday.

Eric had to go and teach his men’s class, so mid-morning I pulled out all the snow clothes, bundled all 4 of us up, and we walked up to the park and met Owen’s school friend Yousuke, his younger brother, and mom Naomi. We all had a great time…






Falling off the sled….


And making a Japanese snowman (they have two stacked body parts, not three)…


Here is a video of Owen and Eric trying to build another snowman in the park later. Clearly, there has to be a better way to move that huge snowball!:

My favorite moment in the snow, however, came when Owen ran into the fresh, untrodden baseball field and threw himself down to make an angel…


Annie also liked the idea of making an angel, so she went running into the open snow field and threw herself down, as well:


The only problem is – she threw herself down face-first…


She still got her angel, but it was a rather cold way of doing things…


Ahh…living. It’s how we learn. And by doing it wrong sometimes the first…even second time around.

That night in bed, Annie thanked God for the beautiful snow. And I thanked God for our new bread machine, which is –slowly– becoming my friend.


One thought on “Live and Learn

  1. Hi Sue,

    Isn’t it funny about the difference between the Japanese snowman and the American? It didn’t dawn on me until our neighbors made comments about the “mezurashii” snowman that we had built (see our blog, address above). And the carrot nose is sooooo “takai”, just like the American’s nose!!

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