About Me…

Life is full… full of surprises, joys, challenges, relationships. In our case, full of amazing children!  Full of encounters with God.  This blog is about all of these things.

Although I’ve lived in Zimbabwe, New Jersey, Indiana, Washington, D.C., and Pasadena… Japan  is home for us.  We love being here with our four children — we have adopted all of them while living here.  Our Maltese dog Molly (16) completes our family. We are working with Asian Access/SIM USA to make disciples in Japan. (Check out Asian Access’ website).

A year after the Tohoku  earthquake and tsunami in 2011, God called our family to move up to the city of Ishinomaki.  Half of this city was hit by the tsunami.  There is much sorrow and heaviness all around us, but it is a privilege to join with our Be One team and what God has been doing to bring hope here.  One of the greatest joys the past few years has been following God’s vision in helping to start the Nozomi Project.  Local women who lost their livelihood and dignity in the tsunami are working together to make beautiful jewelry out of the shards of pottery broken by the tsunami.  Show your support and visit our website!

I love:  fun family times;  refinishing old things and making them new;  making unique cakes that bring joy to the receiver;  practical jokes; the rare chances to hang out with any of my three sisters or Dad, walking in a beautiful place, a good book, peanut butter cups, learning something new, going to coffee with a good friend.

I received my BA in English Lit and Political Science from Taylor University; my MA and PhD from Fuller Theological Seminary in Intercultural Studies/Leadership Development.  After three years in the Tokyo area as a single missionary in my twenties,  I met Eric when I was his academic advisor at Fuller (we didn’t start dating until I had quit!).  We came together to Japan in 2001 and lived in Sendai for two years, and then spent the next 8 or so years in the Kobe/Osaka area before moving up north.

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12 thoughts on “About Me…

  1. Sue, this was worth the time! I’m not sure I am brave enough to do blogging! The kids are getting big and seem really happy.

    Craig and Yumiko left us a week ago and we are bereft. They are in Florida for a few days, then on to California for “training”. Soon they will join you in Japan!

    It is a hot, lovely day here. This morning I joined my husband for the first time ever in his “new” kayak. Actually, I gave him a kayak-building kit for his birthday many years ago. This project took 6 or 7 years! It was a birthday gift that kept on giving. Anyway, today was my first ride in it and it handled well. We both decided it was perfect for two people. Now he needs to build a one-seater for those days when I can’t go along for the ride!

    May God be gracious to you,

    Love, Marj

  2. Wow, Sue! What a great job you’ve done with the blog! You’ve really gone to town with it. At first I was taken a back by the pictures of you… and then Eric… Owen… Annie… family I soooooo dearly miss. And then there’s Olivia… who’s a little girl already and I completely missed that part of her life! All that to say, THANK YOU for starting a blog so I can get caught up on the big things and the little things in your lives.

    Deepest love,


  3. Hi Mrs. Takamoto,

    I’m one of the many good friends that Mark has here at DirecTV. We’re so sorry to hear of your loss. Mark only told briefly about his father’s condition when he had to rush to Utah last Sunday. We really had not much details on the incident. So thank you for the postings.

    DirecTV would like to send an arrangement to the family. We already have Mark’s address but the company needs to know the name of the deceased as well. Do you think you could provide us with that information? You could email me at tvluu@directv.com or call me at (310)964-6436.

    Our deepest condolences to you and your families. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.


    Jan Luu

  4. Hello! I came across your blog looking for ideas on how to make an Olivia The Pig cake! 🙂 Is there any tips on how you made yours that you can share with me? Id love it!!

  5. Please email me privately so I can respond with questions about possible ways I might help.


    Linda Lynch

  6. Sue: how can someone in the US purchase the jewelry made from broken pottery? Please reply. Some of the items were sold at a church sale recently and many people would like to get more.

  7. Hi, My name is Ann LIttle and I am a missionary living in Sendai. I visited your website selling the Nozomi jewelry (in English and $) and was not able to leave a message. (Still under construction?) How can I purchase your jewelry? Do you have a place in Ishinomaki where you sell it? I think your Shads of hope project is wonderful!!!

  8. Hello and blessings!

    We heard about you, your family, and mission work from Karen Kawate, who attends the church where we are staying in Hilo, Hawaii.

    We are a married team of missionaries with our own ministry. We feel called to Asia and we would like to be in Japan for about 2 weeks, while being open to stay longer if the Lord guides us to do so. We then plan to do mission work in S. Korea and China.

    We work with children, as well as teach and preach.
    We will look forward to hearing from you.

    Thank you so much and many blessings!
    Giovanny and Joanna Amaya
    My Little World Ministry

  9. Hi there! I happened upon your blog today as I was researching what to do with broken pottery. Google found me a blog that then pointed me here. (I’m working on a talk about how God uses our broken to show off His amazing.) So here I am, heart all pounding excited-like for what you are doing to bring hope to such hurt! And then I read that you are a Taylor Alum, just like me (class of ’94). 🙂 And I had to leave a comment. Anyway — blessings to you and your family. Can’t wait to tell the women I speak to on Thursday all about this awesome hope-bringing that God is working through you.

  10. Hi Sue,
    Your words and the work of the Lord were so precious to me right now. I returned home from church this morning with a note to myself to write to you. (Ragtime festival this afternoon had to take first place, but now I’m back). At Chapelgate this morning we had a missions breakfast with Dan Iverson and Sema sharing about their church planting in Japan. I feel like you must know them somehow? Dan is a son of Chapelgate and was sent to Japan many years ago by the church. I was so moved by their testimonies this morning that I want to pray every day for your country. I was thinking about you and Craig and Yumiko too. I’d llke to find a way to get your blogs.

  11. Hi Sue!
    Kate gave me your info and I’ve wanted to get in touch with you since we are living in Shanghai, so only a short distance away! Email me and I’ll give you all my contact info. I’m planning on coming to Japan next month.


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