Saturday, March 21, 2009

Misawa Family Photos - Ulrich's

We took photos of the Ulrich's on Tuesday. They wanted photos taken before Jim left for training followed by a 6-month deployment. We know Jim and Julie from our Sunday night Bible study and had a blast taking family photos for them. Hope you enjoy!

Friday, March 20, 2009

More Aoni...

The Romantic Aoni Onsen....with Micah

So while Ryan was on re-constitution for two weeks lots of people took small local trips. We decided to do something romantic...well, as romantic as you can with a eight month old. We went to an Onsen about three hours from here. It normally would only take and hour and 1/2 but due to winter road conditions many roads are closed. Aoni is nestled in the Hakkoda Mountains and as you drive up to it you can see Mt. Hirosaki, which is beautiful. We had lots of fun and Micah loved the outside baths. They weren't to hot due to the winter temps. so he was able to stay in a little longer. There was no electricity, so our room was lit by oil lamp and heated by a kerosene heater. We watched them fish our dinner out from right behind our room. Fish on a stick...YUM(seriously) I was brave and tried everything they offered, unlike Ryan, I didn't lick my plate clean. We had a tremendous time and we hope you enjoy the pictures we took. Sorry we didn't capture our meals, we kept forgetting to bring our cameras.
For you GPS capable folks that are interested in checking it out and think the directions from ITT are not so great, the onsen is at N40 34.286 E140 43.758 and the parking lot that they shuttle you from in winter is at N40 34.839 E140 41.245.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

New Website!

So after the same boring website for the past couple of years, we've finally ditched the old look and dropped a couple of dollars on a better looking and functioning site. I've tested the site with Safari, Internet Explorer, and Firefox. So far no problems (please let me know if anything doesn't work). If you have a slow internet connection, this website will take significantly longer to load, but we hope that everyone enjoys the new look! So check it out if you have a few minutes...and if you know anyone in the Misawa area that needs photography, tell them to look us up. The link is: Cross Photography. The music is from Daniel Ho, licensed through Triple Scoop Music. Enjoy!

Family Ski Trip - APPI

It seems that everytime I post something, we've already done two or three things since, it goes Fast and Furious (just like on the bus ride up to APPI). I'm going to get caught up here goes.

I know what you're thinking...and yes, that is Micah strapped on for the ride...and it was COLD! It snowed pretty much the whole time and the wind blew perfectly sideways all day. The weather finally got nicer as we were leaving. We got lots of strange looks from the Japanese and American people on the slopes. Despite everything, Micah had a great time and we've determined that next ski season we'll have him on his own skis (hopefully).

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Skiing Hakkoda Ropeway

On the 4th, I got to finally experience the Japan ski scene. While Sarah was at work, I went out with the guys and hit up the Hakkoda Ropeway for some skiing. For more info, this site is pretty good:

The skiing was pretty awesome. I had some borrowed skis that were designed for Giant Slalom type skiing...and this skiing was a mixture of 6-9 inches of fresh powder in places and solid ice in others. Not to mention that none of it is groomed, so it is a bit bumpy...and steep! This made the skiing very difficult...and it was the first time in 2 years or so that I had hit the slopes. The weather there was absolutely perfect, which apparently is a VERY rare thing. People say that you normally can't see more than 50 feet in front of you, so it gets a little sporty at times. The food at the bottom of the mountain was incredible. I had some pork cutlet curry that definitely hit the spot. I've since ordered new skis, boots, and hopefully I will get those in soon and be able to enjoy some spring skiing.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Ryan's Desert Return

On March 1st, I got back with a group of roughly 300 happy people after 5+ months in Balad, Iraq. We were chartered on Omni Air International, a DC-10 that took us on a worldwide tour on the way home. Rather than traveling East, which was about a 18-hour flight, our flight was routed West. We flew from Qatar to Cypress (Greece) to Shannon (Ireland) to Anchorage (Alaska) to Misawa. All told, the trip was 36 hours (about 26 of those were in the air). Once we were on the ground, though, nothing else really mattered. It was a great time seeing Sarah and Micah in person rather than in pictures. So much had changed in those 5 months...Sarah has lost her baby weight and is fitting into all of her old clothes again, and Micah sits up on his own, laughs, plays, and eats real food! Micah even seemed to recognize me...mustache and all. Micah had a DVD of me reading a couple of books that he watched almost every day. We think that was a huge factor and led to a much easier transition to having an extra body around the house. Some friends of ours snapped some great photos for the homecoming with our camera so you guys could see it too. If you would like to read the Public Affairs news release from the event, just click on the title of this post. Enjoy the pics!

The photo below was taken by the base photographer. The full size version is available at:

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Samurai return

Hey everyone, it's Ryan and I've finally made it back. We have started to get some things around the house back in order but right now things are quite hectic. We're still unpacking boxes from Sarah's return from the states and I'm still sorting through stacks of paperwork that have been eagerly awaiting my return. Although there is PLENTY of work for us over the next week and a half before I return to work, we have made plenty of room for fun. Hopefully I can get our blog back up to speed over the course of this week.

Anyways, here are some of the photos from the Squadron's return. The return took place over several days and I think everyone is back now. The first batch of photos is from the 27th of February when the jets flew in. Enjoy!

Samurai Return Part Deux