Monday, May 15, 2017

Mother's Day

As Kai has been getting an allowance for nearly a year now, I wanted him to get something for Mom for Mother's Day using his own money. The goal was to get him to think of someone other than himself, and learn to be generous.

I brought up the idea a couple of weeks ago and he did not like it. "You're stressing me out!"

I explained to him all that Mom does for us and that he should show appreciation for it. I told him that the money he earns should not be just for getting plushies, but for getting something for someone else, like on Mother's Day.

He grumbled, but each time I brought it up he grumbled a little less. The day before Mother's Day, I told him that we would go to a store after our weekly trip to the library. I asked him if we preferred to go to Walgreen's or Target, and he picked Walgreen's. I suspect it was because he knew there would be very inexpensive items there.

So we went to Walgreen's and he scanned through the cosmetics aisle. Well, after he checked the toy aisle first, but he knew that he shouldn't give Mom a Pokemon or anything like that. Small victory.

He looked at all the different lipstick for sale and I could tell that he wanted to find the cheapest one. He finally asked where they carry the lip balm. We went over to a different aisle and I found a lip balm that was more colorful and interesting than Chapstick. If he was going to get something like that, maybe this would be a nice one. He liked that it was under $5.

I had him take it over to the cashier and pay for it himself with his allowance money. It was a good thing that there was no one in back of us in line as he took his time trying to find exact change.

On Mother's Day morning, he gave Mom his handmade card...

And the lip balm. I had told my wife that I had gotten Kai to buy something for her with his own money so she should be really enthusiastic to show him how much she appreciated him thinking of her.

Hopefully, over time and through many experiences like this, he will learn the pleasure of giving to others.

Later in the day we went for a nice walk with Simba. My wife is becoming a real dog whisperer and is getting dogs to walk very nicely with her without pulling or stopping to sniff.

In the afternoon, Kai and I worked on making a Mother's Day dessert. At the library, he found a Pokemon Cookbook. For our first try, we decided to make Pokeballs out of gelatin and plain yogurt.

Alas, the red side of the ball was supposed to be made with strawberry jam and we used jelly so it did not hold together in a ball shape like it was supposed to. Next time we will use jell-o.

For dinner, we went to a Japanese restaurant that we had never gone to before. Izakaya Sankyu is a bit different from most Japanese restaurants around here. Their menu is like an izakaya in Japan, where Japanese businessmen go after work to drink and eat small tapas-like dishes. This place had a large variety of small plates to choose from. We had beef tongue, takoyaki (ball-shaped, made with octopus), yakitori (grilled chicken), spicy chicken wings, fish, mushrooms, and several other things. We finished up with ochazuke (rice mixed with tea and other toppings).

They also had regular entrees and sushi like any other Japanese restaurant, but we stuck with the more traditional izakaya food. Everything was delicious, but the service was pretty bad. The place was packed for Mother's Day and they seemed overwhelmed. It took a long time for them to take our orders and to serve the food. They took several of our plates to the wrong table before my wife noticed the confusion at the other table and told them it was our order. We also had to get used to sitting on the floor (though they had regular tables with chairs as well). But overall, it was worthwhile going there.

So we had a nice Mother's Day. Hope you did, too!


  1. That was a good idea to have him spend his own money. His mother can appreciate it much more that way. Although, I think the handmade card is the most appreciated gift.

    I wish we had such a restaurant here. I have always wanted to try such a restaurant.

    That is a nice picture of your wife and you.

    1. I really enjoyed the izakaya-style food. Great plates that I hadn't had except in Japan.

      Thanks, Shiroi!

  2. What a great idea....and I do believe that over time you will have taught Kai a great thing! Glad you all have a nice day...that food sure looks yummy!

    1. It will take time, but hopefully Kai will learn to be generous.

      The food was really yummy! Thanks, Betsy!


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