Okay my friends! I am ready for Leiya! (Well, her room is ready. The rest of the house she'll have to forgive. The messes will make it feel more like home.)
I gave up on the idea of balloons and banners. No such thing in Japan as helium balloons for private use. I have seen them at festivals, Disneyland, opening events etc but they aren't just sold in the supermarkets or florist shops like in the States.
So instead I cleaned the room. Bought more air freshener (remember, this is the room that used to be the sewing room last week when I was having cat woes!) Bought some sunflowers (put them in a place where I hope the cats will ignore them). Bought new sheets. Found a cute "towelket" which is a combination of towel and blanket and is used in Japan during the hot and muggy season when you can't stand a blanket but a sheet is too thin. They are a must in Japan. This one had cute fish on it. Sort of Japanese looking. Bought a couple of new gauze towels (also necessary in muggy Japan because regular towels won't dry) These have a cute Japanese print on them too. Bought toiletries and placed them in a pretty basket (I'm thinking Bed and Breakfast now) Bought a girl's teenage fashion magazine (looks boring to me but she might like to read some Japanese right away) . Bought some Hershey's Kisses to put on her pillow tonight Hilton Hotel style! (Hmmm ... I hope the cats don't go after those too.)
Tetsu and I are leaving in a couple of hours for the airport, a three hour drive away. I've already gotten an e-mail from Leiya's family saying that she got through the Ohio airport with no problems and is winging her way here. She has to change planes in Chicago by herself (this will be a first for her. She's flown alone before but never had to make the plane change) so we are keeping her in our prayers for that as well as for her safety. The e-mail from her family was so nice! I wish I could quote it all here but they probably wouldn't want that. Suffice it to say that they are wonderful people and entrusting Leiya to them has been a real comfort to us these past two years. Nevertheless, we are excited about having Leiya with us in Japan for the month!
I'll try to keep you posted on Leiya's visit but I may get sidetracked for the next few days!