I've titled this "December 2001" but it actually contains quite a few pictures from earlier in the year that I haven't gotten around to putting up on the web yet. Soon after Mom left this summer, Leon's friend Akkochan came to visit. She was probably Leon's first friend. Her family used to live in the apartment next to ours. She came to visit by bus from Kitakyushu, several hours away.
Akkochan loves dogs. Here she is with a dog named Happy that were were keeping (along with her mother Fluffy) for a friend.
Later we took Akkochan to a place to eat good trout. The weather was nice before we got there but it started to rain soon after. Still, Leon and I were determined to catch our dinner (even though we didn't have to).
After lunch we went to the nearby Shiraito Falls.
Mia put this together on her own, without any prompting or help.
We caught this bat in our house (one found a way in through the air conditioner -- fortunately, this only happened once). We then released it outside.
Mia loves the clothes she got from Grandma Masden. She's planning to wear them on her first day in elementary school, which starts in April here.
The kids love our dog Cheese. The pictures are probably not of much interest to most of you but Leon insisted on taking them.
Leon bought this Santa suit for Cheese with his own money. I didn't think it was a very good idea (and still don't) but I let him do it. It's cute but not very practical.
The kids like to dress Cheese up. Cheese tolerates this stoically.
I'll put up more pictures up in 2002. Happy New Year!