Easy vs. Hard

I wanted to share some of the differences from our home in the USA and what we're used to there versus how things are here. First on my list is our apartment, we only brought over what we need for 10 months and we're staying in a furnished apartment that includes housekeeping.  I don't have any cleaning supplies or a broom or vacuum (I don't think the hand broom in the front closet counts). It's nice to have someone come and clean once a week, replace all my linens and towels, etc. They even dry out the kitchen sink and dishwasher. It's great! Definitely on the 'Easy' side of my differences list, although I just found out that they wipe everything but don't use any cleaning products or actually mop, etc. so I may need to do a few things myself.

Laundry, on the other hand, is harder. Our little 'all-in-one' washer/dryer is best for only washing and so I hang everything up in the shower to dry. It takes a considerable amount of time to hang everything up nicely rather than tossing it in the dryer.  Thank goodness we have this cool little feature that blows warm air in to get everything dry, but then I also have to do more ironing than I've been used to at home.

I had to include this... we have a cassette deck here in our room. I just wish I had brought some of my tapes that I used to listen to...in elementary school. :)  

Grocery shopping is definitely on the 'harder' list.  It's conveniently just around the corner but things I'm used to and use a lot like cheese, cereal, butter, canned goods are not very plentiful and very  expensive.  For example, here are an average cost of these foods:
8 oz. cheese- $8
800 g. cereal- $9.30
12 oz can of beans- $2.37
Singe apple- $2
The other tricky part is reading the labels to make sure I'm buying what I think I'm buying. My first week I lucked out by guessing what package was cornstarch based on the look and feel of the package.

Once I get home with my groceries I have to cook- by converting everything to the metric system or trying to decipher the directions on the back. So far I've done okay, sometimes I just guess. The package below is for some Ramen. It comes 'fresh' and not hard in the refrigerated section. The first time I made it I didn't get the water amounts right because there was less water than noodles, good thing it was easy to just add more water until it seemed right.

I'll blame it on the jet lag, but during our first week I had to ask someone about the oven only going to 200 and they told me it was 200 Celsius. It was an Ah Ha moment. :)

This is our little oven. I have one little bread pan and these little sheets that slide inside. A 9x13 pan fits just barely.

There are so many reasons I'm grateful that Roderick was ready to potty train when we got here to Tokyo.  One of those reasons are the wipes that they have available, they are thin like a dryer sheet, small, and not very wet. Luckily I had brought enough wipes that I only had to use these a few times before we potty trained

Well that's all that I have to share on my list for now. It's certainly an adventure living in a foreign country! 


Sara Jolie said...

Converting to the metric system and changing the foods one is used to eating would be hard!