Monday, May 18, 2009


Steve surprised me with a trip to Japan for my Birthday!!!

We flew business first class both ways which was nice for 2 reasons

1. The seats lay down almost flat.

2. The flight was 13 hours going over to Japan and 12 coming back

(The perks of working for Continental)

For dinner we starting out with sushi then either steak or fish.

ending with ice cream Sundas & cheese cake!
I think we better not get used to that because when we go to Southwest it won't happen anymore.

Our first day in Tokyo was in Shinjuku. We learned how their temples and shrines work! They were everywhere.

We found a local market to get some bananas for breakfast.

Steve standing in front of the entrance to a Temple in Shinjuku.

This is a Japanese toilet. You are supposed to squat down and try not

to get your business on your clothes.....good luck!!!

I was so grateful for pictures on all the menus and the little bits of English everywhere. Everyone was so helpful and friendly.

This was our first experience of eating out in Japan. It was a fun experience. Find the picture of what you want
push the button and put in your yen. The money was
fun. 1,000 yen was about $10. We ate rice at every meal with chopsticks!!!

This guy was huge... Steve snuck a picture as he got of the subway.

The subway was a fun experience. We figured it out and could get anywhere in Tokyo.

We were amazed at the respect of all the people. People everywhere walking everywhere and when you got to an escalator everyone would get on single file lined to the left so people could pass on the right. It was amazing to watch.
They were so helpful and kind. I think my favorite part was how they bowed. I loved it!!

The other thing I noticed and loved was how modest everyone dressed.

All the men were in suites!!!

As we came down the street in Roppongi we saw angel Moroni... it was such a comforting feeling.

Here we are in the middle of a foreign country not knowing where we were and when we found the temple I felt like we were home (comfortable and safe)

As we were taking pictures in front of the temple, an Institute teacher came out and showed us the MTC and the dorms located next door.

We found a sushi bar. Since we couldn't pronounce the names we just pointed to the pictures. He would make it right there and then put it on the little conveyor belt and it would just come around to you. The plates were different colors (white, blue, yellow, etc.) that was how they new how much to charge you when you were done eating. We kept ordering because it was so... good. I kept asking Steve if we were little pigs. I guess not because the two of us ate for $12,000 yen (that's only about 12 bucks)

Tsukjji market (Fresh fish) This was a smelly little place but we tried all sorts of fishy fish. There were fish and other sea life I didn't know people could even eat.

Every hotel had slippers and robes.
I had to try them out.

We took a tour to Mt. Fuji!!!

This is a picture of a picture of it from the souvenir shop.
Outside the shop it was so foggy you could see about 100 ft. so we didn't see Mt Fuji.

We took a gondola ride by lake Hackone, It went over a sulfur mine so the smell was less than desirable.

This was taken in a subway station, I have no idea what it is, but it looked neat.

Here is our pirate boat ride on Lake Ashi.
If you look close in the water you can see the red alter. If you have been to Epcot in Florida, it was constructed as a replica of this one. (well I don't know who built it first?)

Our last day it was raining... the sweet workers at the market must have felt sorry for us when they saw us look at the rain suites, try the ATM (that wouldn't take our card & the store wouldn't take our credit card) then walk out and stand under the owning deciding what to do since we wanted to make sure we had enough yen to pay for food, transportation and our departure tax. Two workers came out and gave us their umbrellas!!!

Imperial palace east garden.

Mandy wanted this picture because if you look at the date on the board it says 17May, Happy Birthday sweetheart!!!

We woke up in Japan on Sunday morning and I went to bed at night in my own bed Sunday night... 31 hours later. The longest birthday I've ever had. It was such a wonderful experience.
Thank you Steven for a Birthday to remember!!!!


Jenn's Mommy Days said...

What a fun trip. I am glad you had a great Birthday. Way to go Steve.

123 checkoutourfamily said...

ah, what a good planner that Steve is. Looks like you will remember that b-day for sure. Glad it was a fun one.

awindowsillview said...

What a great birthday present!! I think you are pretty spoiled! I still can't believe you guys were really there - what an experience. I love seeing all your pictures - without blogging who knows if I would have ever seen even one picture...pretty cool! Oh, and a belated happy birthday...what is Steve going to do next year to top this???!

Slyck and Slim said...

I am so glad you shared all those great pictures from your trip -- you guys had so much fun! I am also glad you enjoyed it because I wondered if this wasn't a Happy Birthday to Steve at first! :) You guys travelled like the Amazing Race -- maybe you should apply to be on it. That is crazy that you just happened upon the temple. What are the chances? That was not coincidence. Happy Birthday, Mandy!

Cindy Quick said...

Thank you so much for sharing your fun time with us through your cute pictures!! It looks like you had a blast. I wondered if you had a happy birthday, and now I know. Glad it was such a great one. Love you guys & miss you tons!

scraphappymama said...

sounds like a great birthday!! How fun to go to Japan. My best friend just got back too. I think you may have been over there at the same time!! Happy Birthday!!

rwphillipsfamily said...

wow..Got a cool brother.. and a fun sis-in-law. What a Great way to celebrate your birthday. Whoo... where will he take you next year to top this? (with southwest)
awesome pics!!

KevAndCan said...

What a great present - you have one amazing husband!

Kristin said...

What an awesome birthday present! What's he going to do next year????? :)

Krystal the Pistol said...

WOW!!!! This is SO cool!!! My brother is living in Japan now. (has been for the past 3 years - my sis-in-law is Japanese) and I've always wanted to go visit! So I hope you don't mind that I just lived that trip vicariously through you! :D

You guys are awesome and we need to get together sometime soon! We're practically neighbors! :)