I have blogged in previous year about the interesting Valentine’s culture of Japan- on Feb 14th, girls are expected to make/buy chocolates and give to not only their “ooh-la-la” (as my girls call their crushes), but also to many of their friends. Hence the burden falls on moms here to do a lot of the prep and to help make sure things get delivered… This year we saved small candycanes from Christmas and made hearts filled with white and milk chocolate and covered in sprinkles. The girls especially loved the sprinkling part! We wrapped them up (they got very sticky, I have to say) – and gave them out yesterday to friends in the community and to our Nozomi ladies. Owen, by the way, blushed quite a bit when he received a special package of chocolates and even a cake from one potential ooh-la-la. Smile.
Two things I loved this year about Valentines Day. The first was coming home after a long day – in the car just praying that God would give me the energy it would take to give our family a good evening… and walking inside the door to find that my ooh-la-la had made dinner and prepared an amazing bouquet of favorite flowers- tulips and irises.
Eric and i have been seeking to be intentional in building up our marriage, and the absolutely sweetest thing about my day was the note that was attached (Not sharing that!)
My second favorite thing was a card that Eric received from the Nozomi staff – along with some awesome chocolates! Because the tradition is for the girls/women to buy for the boys/men, the Nozomi women had prepared special treats for our children but also for the husbands of Be One. It was so so sweet. Here is the card that they wrote out for Eric:
Eric has had a special part in the forming of the Nozomi community, and has continued to support the women and the business in a myriad of ways. He continues to help with cutting the broken pottery, maintenance of the machinery and supplies, but also spiritually encouraging and sharing with the staff. What one of the women wrote (top left corner) sums up one of the reasons why I am most thankful for my Valentine:
“[From] big body and big heart come very much very much gentleness. Thank you!”