Saturday, May 30, 2015

Birthday Celebration at Tsukasa

It was my birthday yesterday. My wife and Kai took me out to a teppan-yaki restaurant that we had never been to before. Teppan-yaki is the Japanese cuisine where they use a hot iron griddle to prepare the food right at the table in front of you. Benihana is the most famous of these places and is a national chain; we went to a place called Tsukasa of Tokyo, which is local to our area.

Kai and I started out with shrimp tempura.

And then it was time for the chef to start cooking. They always start by setting off a huge flame. Kai always gets scared at the thought of it.

This time I saw a smile on his face so I think he enjoyed it, though he still wanted to cling to Mom.

One of the nice things about this type of restaurant is that it's easier to get Kai to stop using the iPad or phone while we are there as the chef is quite entertaining. Our chef seemed particularly adept. The chefs all wear different color chef hats. We saw chefs with green, red, brown, and black hats. Our chef had a black hat which meant that he was a master chef, the top level. He demonstrated his skill by flipping pieces of broccoli into the mouths of each patron at the table. Here is the broccoli headed toward my wife's mouth as Kai gapes in amazement.

We all had combo platters with steak; my wife and I had it with scallops, Kai had his with shrimp.

The food was very delicious. We all thought that this was the best teppan-yaki restaurant we had been to.

Even the pineapple dessert was both delicious and artistic.

Afterward, we sat out by the koi pond.

And then went back home to finish off the celebration with an ice cream cake.

It was definitely a very happy birthday!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

A Sweet Day

My sister and brother-in-law visited this weekend. Which came in handy as we needed the extra help with walking the dogs we had.

Later, we all went to the Long Grove Chocolate Festival where Kai enjoyed a few different types of chocolate. Here he's having chocolate-covered marshmallows.

When Kai was little, he loved bubbles. It's been a while since he played with them, but this bubble maker at the festival got his attention.

And he had fun chasing and popping some bubbles.

Later, back at the house, we all celebrated my dad's birthday. His actual birthday won't be until later this month, but since he's always saying how he's almost 100 years old and that milestone is still a decade away, I don't think he minded an early celebration of his 90th birthday.

And there's nothing like having some of the ice cream birthday cake that capped a sweet day for Kai.

Monday, May 4, 2015

At the Driving Range

Spring seemed particularly late in arriving but we are now finally taking advantage of nicer weather to do some more outdoor activities.

My wife used to be an avid golfer though she doesn't play too often anymore. But she had been telling Kai that she would like to show him how to golf some day. This weekend, Kai asked to go to the driving range.

My wife tried to show him the basics.

As when I try to tutor him in math on weekends, I got frustrated when he didn't listen to what my wife and I were trying to tell him.

I kept repeating, "Keep your hands together."

And he kept doing this...

The more I said it, the more it angered Kai. So after a while, I stopped saying anything.

My wife was a bit more patient and encouraging than I was. When I stopped badgering him, he seemed to actually have fun.

And, at times, he swung better.

We went through a bucket of balls and he wanted to do more, so I got another big bucket.

I don't know that we'll ever play a round together, but for one afternoon, he got to take the first steps in following Mom's footsteps.

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