Archives for September, 2009

Dog proofing your house: 5 golf gloves, 10 socks, 1 stocking,and 1 towel

 In previous entry titled “Why do dogs eat inedible?” , I wrote about I had one incident that got me worried very much when Palette swallowed coin. I came across one article at about Golden Retriever that ate 5 golf gloves,10 socks, 1 stocking and 1 towel and those inedible items were found when vet tried to treat what they thought was tumor.

 What amazing thing is that this Golden Retriever Bailey still had appetite and ate usual food with no problem and owner did not think that all those inedible were accumulated in her tummy. Then, vet found the huge mass at Bailey’s routine check-up. To read full article,please click here.

 When you read book about puppy training, you usually read that you need to puppy-proof the house. Bailey’s owner seems she did not recognize those items that recovered from Bailey’s tummy were missing from the house except 1 golf glove.

 It will be good idea to dog proof your house when dogs will be house-sitting themselves. All inedible should be out of reach of dogs. Electrical cords is especially dangerous. Try review your house items through dog’s eye level. What looks interesting to grab and pull? Anything breakable where they can get to? Anything sharp could fall over if being pulled? Any cabinets/fridge/trash bins etc are easy to be accessed to?

 I know that our dog “Palette” loves flavored paper towel. What it is is that it is a paper towel that you wipe your fingers after eating pizza, for example. It becomes so interesting items for her and if you left table with pizza sauce flavored paper towel behind on table, Palette would grab and tear and play with it. I always catch her in action and never gave a chance for her to actually eat it but,it is dangerous. If she find the pizza flavored paper towel so highly valuable and hard to give it up, I will trade something valuable but edible items. “Give” command comes handy in such occasion. You can read about “Give””Drop it””Trade” command training in previous entry titled “Tug of war“.

 Trash bin is surprisingly not something Palette find it interesting to play with, even if there are wrapper of candies or empty bags of cookies. She sniff at it, but leave the trash bin behind untouched.
Trash bins can contains so many inedible and really dangerous so, it will be wise to keep the trash bin where dogs cannot have access to.

 At the same time, it is a big help if your dog knows what are ok to chew,what not.

 If your dogs are very smart and can open drawers, can open fridge or cabinet even if you try not being able to access to, then letting them rest in their crate while you are out will be a good idea.

 I would imagine there are many ways to dog – proofing your house. Do you have any tips on dog-proofing your house?

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Sep 29, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Japanese/Thai cooking: Curry

 Everyone has favorite dish to eat. Curry is one of my favorite dishes of all time. Very easy to make,and tasty and, especially, Japanese curry has lots of vegetable in it.

 When I was a kid, curry was #1 dish to eat, and I asked my mother to make it over and over again for dinner. It still is my favorite dish to make or to eat and, I make all kinds of curry.

 As you know, there are so many variation of curry;Indian curry, Thai curry(red curry,yellow curry,green curry,Penang curry), Japanese curry.

 Japanese curry is brown color when it is done and there are commercially made block of curry ruex.

  There are spicy,mild,sweet variety, and you can get them at World Market near you or at Asian stores.

 My favorite brand of curry ruex is S&B. Usually green colored box with curry dish picture on it. I normally use 2 kinds of ruex (Spicy ruex+mild ruex) mixed in.

 For me,sweet block of curry ruex is way too mild and,I do not like it. Then,I normally put diced potato,carrot,onion,apple, green/red pepper,diced tomato in curry. How it is made?? Here is how.

Japanese curry and rice..

1. Put a sauce pan on stove top and start cooking rice.

**There are so many kinds of rice but for Japanese curry dish,I prefer making stickier (more starchy rice) kind.My favorite brand of rice is called “kokuho Rose Rice” and you can find them at local grocery store,international aisle**

2. While rice is cooking, place another sauce pan on stove,pour some Extra Virgin Olive Oil (Cold press EVOO is tastiest of all. I use only cold first press EVOO for cooking) over medium high heat.

3. Peel potatoes,cut to dice, and put them into sauce pan

4. Peel carrots,cut to chunk and put them into sauce pan

5. Chop onion,dice tomatoes and green/red peppers and put them into sauce pan

6. Peel Fuji apple into quarter and chop quarter portion into dice and put them into sauce pan. Remained 3/4 of Fuji apple should be dipped into water that is added sprinkle of table salt to avoid it gets brown. Then,once dipped,the remained portion can be stored in fridge or eat as fruit desert after Curry dinner.

7. Add water to sauce pan and cook till potatoes and carrots are fork-tender. Then, add protein you like:chicken,pork,beef…

It is best to add pounded and sliced meat for tender meat in the dish. If you did not have meat mallet,use the back of knife to pound and cut to chunks and add to dish.

Then,add block of curry,stir well and set the heat to simmer and cover it and cook about 15-20 min more.

** Consistency of the curry should be about gravy sauce.Not too watery,not too thick. I usually eyeball veg,water and adjust amount of curry it yeild when I add block of curry**

8. After 15-20 min simmer, stir it again and pour it over cooked rice and voilà! You made Japanese Curry!! It probably takes 30-40 minutes from start to finish.

*** I have found that Japanese Curry ruex box states to add ginger or garlic wen you make curry but for me,it makes Curry off-taste and,I do not care for.

 On talk of Curry, other type of curry is also easy to make if you know basic ingredients to go with.

  For Thai Curry,I tend to make red curry more than any other Thai curry. I like all kinds but curry paste is not readily available at where I shop. You can order paste at as well but I tend to reach hands to available Thai red curry paste.

Thai Red curry

1. For Thai curry, again start with rice. Cook Jasmin rice according to the direction on back of the package. My favorite brand is Della’s. 

2.Then, place sauce pan on stove top,add oil and add grated garlic,add vegetable of your choice. After vegetable is getting soft, add Thai curry paste. My favorite brand for Thai curry is Taste of Thai. Or Mae ploy brand.

3. After you smell fragrant curry paste, add unsweetened coconut milk and stir well. Then, add protein of your choice.

4. Add fish sauce (Available at Asian store,local grocery store ) add some dark brown sugar (Traditionally, Thai cooking use Palm sugar but as substitute,you can use brown sugar in pinch), and I tend to add Sriracha ( Thai version of hot sauce. ) to give the dish a little kick to it. Then,add grated lime zest (Authentic dish uses lime leaves) and,lime juice from fresh half lime and adjust flavor/spiciness.

5.Simmer until curry gets thicker in consistency

6. Then,right before finishing,add chopped fresh basil.

**DO NOT add fresh herb when you still need to cook. Herb turns grayish greenish odd looking thing, and not looking vibrant green color in dish**

7.Pour curry over rice. Voilà! You made Thai curry!

8.Put the juiced lime skin into garbage disposal in kitchen sink. It becomes kitchen disposal freshener.

Other way you can enjoy curry any kind is that, you make curry sauce with no vegetable chunks,no meat chunks and when you cook skillet fish fillet or chicken breast etc,you can pour the sauce over the protein of your choice and serve it with steak style.
 Got left over rice? You can keep them in tapper wear (not with curry sauce) if you eat it within 1-2 days and when you want to eat the rice, add about 1/4 Cup of water,put the lid on loosely and microwave it. By placing the lid over the container loosely,it creates steaming action in Microwave. So,you can eat soft rice again. If you don’t eat it right away,keep them in freezer,and use it to cook Fried Rice.

 You can also make rice pudding with left over rice. Curry is spicy side and sweet desert like rice pudding goes very well with dish. When I make Thai curry,I usually have leftover coconut milk. So,I use it to make rice pudding and make coconut rice pudding.


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Sep 27, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Eye glasses for dogs

 In Previous entries titled ” How well dogs can see” ,”How dogs see colors” I wrote about dogs can see wide range of view than human, but what dogs can see has limitation to distinguish one color to the other.

Dogs can’t see red, orange, or green; those colors for them,look like yellow or blue. And,if you throw orange tennis ball to green lawn, dogs see yellow ball with yellow lawn.

They pick up the motion very well,better than human,and they can chase after object (ball) without loosing the ball in sight.

Now, dogs like human ages and as they grow, eye sight changes. Human can wear eye glasses or contact lenses to see things better. What can you do for dogs with bad eyesight?

I have never seen dogs wearing corrective eyesight eye glasses, or never heard of dogs wearing contact lenses for dogs. I know there is doggle (dog goggle) to protect their eye from flying debris when they ride in trucks or cars with their owners. I have read that the doggles are used for military dogs,search and rescue dogs as well to protect their eyes.

Amazing thing about this is that the doggle is 100% UV protection,anti fog lenses,shatterproof. And now,you can buy just lenses with different colors and put it into goggle base. I was amazed by what doggle can provide.

According to article by Dr Marty Becker at abc news,goggle is more than fashion and eye protection for car ride. It says special vet can perform retinoscopy,which  is similar to what normally done for kids who are too young to read the eye chart.

Then, they can prescribe the eye glasses for dogs. Doggle company makes dog eye glasses to order with prescription from ophthalmologist at cost of less than $100.

Also, they make black shade glasses for blind dogs who are sensitive to light and it can protect eyes from bumping into things. To read full story,please click here.

Also,you can read more on prescription eye glasses for dogs at following site as well.

** Read at wpxi site.Please click here.

** Read at Fort worth under dog site.Please click here.

Bellow is video clip “dog with goggle”. If you are a blog subscriber, please click here to watch video.


Palette does not have doggle,but I would imagine if I got one and get her to wear, she would paw at the doggle.She loves anything goes around her neck but not so much for other areas.

One question came to my mind. If a dog wear doggle, do they see as well as they can without doggle? I would imagine range of view will be narrower.

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Sep 23, 2009 | 0 | Miscellaneous (dogs)

Boxing Day

 I love traveling. I love to learn new thing about many things but one of the things I found it interesting to learn is cultural difference. Each country has its tradition,custom, cerebration and it is very interesting to learn all about them.

 In previous entry titled “Christmas around the world“, I have written how we cerebrate Christmas differently in US and in Japan. In England, they too have Christmas day, but also have Boxing day in December.

 Boxing day is one of the bank holiday (You can read more on Bank Holiday in previous entry “Bank Holiday”.Please click here.), and according to wikipedia,it is also knows as “Day of Goodwill” in South Africa and other countries such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand,Hong Kong,South Africa etc have Boxing day. And in England,it is also a very big shopping holiday. Stores open around 5am and retailers sell products with great discount. (To read wikipedia article,please click here.)

 When you just hear the word “Boxing”,I am sure some of you would imagine boxing competition but,nothing to do with it. Boxing day usually fall on 26th of December,and if 26th of December falls on Saturday,Sunday, then Boxing day is next weekday.

 According to factmonster website, the tradition has started in England in middle ages,. And it seems there are some theories how it started.

 Some historians say that the Boxing day has started to give next day day off to servants who were required to work on Christmas day at the time. Servants pack their bag to go back to families to spend quality time with them and when they leave, employers gave them gift boxes.

 Other theory is that there were boxes that placed in church and the boxes had coins for the poor. The boxes were open on 26th of December and coins were distributed to those.

 Today,this tradition is expanded and still going on. People thank service workers such as mailman, doorman, porters etc who helped them and give gift to them. (To read full story,please click here.)

 I think this is great tradition to show appreciation to those who help us.

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Sep 21, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Palette’s note;Dehydrated Rabbit ears

 Have you ever wondered if you could actually see how other dogs are enjoying the treats and chews?
 Not just pictures,but in video so that you can actually HEAR and feel the treats’ textures?

 I have started series titled “Palette’s Note”, which you can read about products detail and see video clips from Palette’s taste test.

 This time,I like to put out detail on Dehydrated Rabbit ears 4oz

Dehydrated Rabbit ears..

 Rabbit ears are made from domestic US source, and it is just simply dehydrated. Dehydrated rabbit ears will be coming in 4 oz resealable bag for your convenience and each bag has roughly 15 ears. Single ear is about 2.5″-5″ long,and nothing is added to the treats.

 Rabbit ears are simply dehydrated.

 In fact, all products you find at our store has no vitamin added. No sugar, no salt, no garlic..

 As you can see in the picture above,the ear is unlike other type of ears such as cow ears or lamb ears or pig ears. These treats have still fur on it.

 Cow ears,pig ears or other type of ears are kind of like chewing gum in our sense. A little chewy. This rabbit ears are very crispy, crunchy… one of Palette’s favorite enough to make her twirl twirl with her eyes stay on the treats.

 It almost like rice cracker or potato chips texture if you will. This thing is crispy but not something you can break into pieces for training treats.This is more for small snack. Great small snack as jack pot for “job well done” for your dogs.

 Ingredients: rabbit ear

 Let’s watch Palette in action with Rabbit ear taste test. ,if you are a blog subscriber, please click here to watch the video.
Palette and dehydrated rabbit ears..

 Can you hear the sound of crispiness? Can you see how much she wants this rabbit ear treat? She gets very talkative for this treats. She really,really,really, likes rabbit ears. Fur of the treats did not cause any digestive upset.

 Now and then,I give her rabbit ear as jack pot for “find it game” when I hide her toy,not treats. She looks very proud herself for finding non food items and bring it back to me for exchange with her treasury treats “Rabbit ears”.

 Sometimes,she wants to go potty after “find it” game,but then she does not want to leave her precious ear treats behind. So, I need lots of conversation with her trying to convincing her not to take the treats with her as potty buddy.

 It is not an easy negotiation but,she accepts it, and as soon as she comes right back in,she grabs the lonely rabbit ear fast, and goes to her favorite place to snack on: her fluffy bed.

 After she eats hers all,I always get her screen test. She needs to sniff me all over to make sure I am not having any more with me. You can imagine how disappointed she will be when she finds out I got none with me.

 To visit our store,please click here or paste and copy the link below into your browser.


Sep 19, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Omisoka (New Year’s Eve),Jyoya No Kane (New Year’s Eve Bell)

 In Japan, most biggest events in a year will be new Years Eve event. In Japan, school starts in April,ends in March but each year starts from Jan,end in December. In Japanese,last day of December aka New year’s eve is called O Misoka. On Dec 31st (Omisoka/New year’s eve),people enjoy special variety shows on TV. Especially the one that starts around from 6-7pm. Big music show  called “kohaku uta gassen” starts,and many people will be glue to the show.

 This show “Kohaku Uta Gassen” bring chosen singers from variety of music kinds:enka (kind of like country music in Japan),pop music,rock music, etc and it is very honorable thing to be on the show for artists. Usually, TV station announce who will be on the show as the date close to the show and newspaper print out who will be in there in what order and what song will be sang for each singer. Male singers are  white colored team, female singers are red team. Then,I believe there were judge in the show and give points to each singer. Then, red team,white team both has leader and they do all the talk including introducing the singers that come on to the stage. During the show, usually we get to see Japanese dram performance or other performances and then back to singing competition again.

 I love music. I played piano, won silver in piano contest when I was junior high school. I love singing too. When I was kid,I liked some dancing groups and some of them danced with roller skate and when I knew they will be on “Kohaku Uta Gassen”, I was very excited. That show itself going on until midnight believe it or not. So,Omisoka or New year’s eve was the only day I was allowed to be up that late.At about midnight,they announce which team won and the team leader gets trophy.

 My family usually went to grandparents’ house around new year’s eve. And always,each Dec 31st (Omisoka), we had soba noodle late at night after early dinner. Many of the things Japanese do will be probably something to do with superstition,but we eat “Toshikoshi Soba” (Buckwheat noodle) on New year’s eve wishing to live long via eating long thin noodle as well as health for coming new year.

 Also, some people go out to shrine to ring the big bell. The bell ring at 12am Jan 1st 108 times. why 108 times? According to japaniroha website, people believed that by ringing the bell once,you get something that make you worry or something that makes you misled away from your body. This is to start new year with new spirit and very last ring of the bell:108th bell, will be rang after midnight has passed.

 Here,you can hear “Joya No Kane”(New year’s eve bell) via video.

   Bellow,you can watch video clip 1: Monks ring the huge bell on New year’s eve, clip 2: people rings bell in turn. Some shrines,monks ring the bell,some shrines,people get in line and get to ring once and if you were within 108th people in line, you can get to ring the bell. I usually heard the bell on TV with my family,never been to shrine to ring but it will be interesting to do in the future.

 Clip 1: Monk ringing bell on New year’s Eve
If you were a
blog subscriber or reading this from facebook ,please click here to watch the video.

Clip 2: people ringing bell on New year’s Eve
If you were a blog subscriber or reading this from facebook ,please click here to watch the video.

 If you had a chance to visit Japan around New year,it will be interesting for you to see this bell ringing event. It must be dynamic to see with your eyes.

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Sep 15, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Veal Marsala

 I love cooking,and I enjoy all kinds of flavor. One of my favorite flavor is Marsala wine flavor. It is versatile flavor and you can make it to savory flavor,you can make it to desert flavor, and I enjoy using Marsala wine a lot. I do not drink, but we have all kinds of alcohol at home. Vodka,brandy,whiskey, Rum,Marsala wine,white wine,red wine, Port wine etc but all of those are for my cooking or baking.

 When you think about wine,you would probably imagine using it for savory in most part,but you can use it to make desert too.

 For example, to make icing, you put confectioner sugar in bowl and add splash of your favorite alcohol such as Rum,Brandy,Amaretto etc and voilà, you made icing for adult. You can also switch the confectioner sugar to white chocolate or Dark chocolate and gently melt the chocolate in double boiler and add splash of alcohol of your choice.If it were too loose,you can add confectioner sugar little by little and voilà,you made chocolate icing for adult! White chocolate Amaretto icing goes really good for my Earl grey scone.You can see Earl Grey scone recipe here.

 And,if you slice strawberries and other fruits, sprinkle white table sugar and add splash of red wine or white wine or Brandy or Rum. Keep them in fridge until the serving time and this easy fruits dish is really good for ice cream topping and it looks very fancy.

 For savory use, by adding splash of your choice of alcohol to ruex (butter and flour),you can make all kind of gravy. It does not have to be plain beef gravy,plain chicken gravy. Just add alcohol of your choice first to the ruex and let the alcohol evaporate and add splash of chicken or beef broth to it and you made your own special gravy for your dish! If Marsala gravy,by adding splash of Dry Marsala to Ruex,and let alcohol evaporate a little and add a bit of beef broth later and voilà you made Marsala gravy for your steak!This is nice for a change.

 I think that Veal Maarsala is one of quick and easy dish that gives you lots of variation to make it. First,you do not have to use veal and you can switch to chicken if you like. And you can make it to steak style or pasta style or maybe just make the marsala sauce and pour it over yummy Gouda mashed potatoes.. Really tasty!

 To make Marsala dish,I have tried all kinds of ratio between marsala wine and broth: I tried just wine,I tried equal amount of each,I tried different ratio but I found that I like the ratio being 1:3 (1 being chicken broth,3 being marsala wine) and I like using Dry Marsala NOT Sweet Marsala. I think Sweet Marsala goes very good to make Tiramisu but not for savory dish.

 First thing you need to do is that you pound the meat to thin. Even if you got thinly sliced veal,you want to pound it to make the meat very tender.If I make chicken marsala,I first cut the whole chicken breast into two pieces and pound it to thin.

 Then, I usually sprinkle Morton’s Natures seasoning (the one with blue cap).

 Then, I pour flour into shallow bowl and add dry oregano, and mix well,put the pounded meat to the flour oregano mix and shake off excess flour.

 You want to put the meat into flour right before you make the dish because if you floured the meat beforehand like 1 hours before your actual cooking time, the meat will dry out and end up with very dry chewy tough piece of meat and,it does not make nice marsala dish

 While you are dredging the meat to flour+oregano mix,turn on the stove and pour Extra virgin olive oil.

 When you see a little steam line going off from skillet, put the meat in and don’t touch it a while.Then,turn it over till cook through

 After that, put sliced white onion and cook till transparent in color. You can cook mushroom but since my husband is not fun of mushroom,I usually make with white onion. I do not use regular yellow onion because I feel that big White onion has more meaty texture to it and when I want texture in dishes like this or French onion soup,I use white onion not yellow onion.

 When onion is dine, add about 6 ounce of Dry marsala wine and let it evaporate a little, add 2 ounce of chicken broth and scrape the bits on bottom of the skillet, then lower the heat and put the veal back in and toss about 1 table spoon of butter and cook till sauce gets creamy and you can turn veal flip over to coat it with marsala sauce nicely. I like tossing a little bit of butter at the end of making dishes like this or risotto.It gives shine in the dish and make creamy sauce.

 When I usually make veal or chicken marsala, I make Gouda mashed potato. (You can see recipe here),and put it on center of the dish,put the veal/chicken cutlet on top,pour the tasty marsala wine sauce over and it makes the dish very restaurant-like and mashed potato and this marsala sauce real goes well and like the way we eat.

 When I feel like make it to pasta dish (Veal marsala pasta),then,I cut the meat to strip and put it back into sauce to coat those meat well with sauce and toss cooked Fettuccine pasta into skillet and mix well with tong,sprinkle chopped Parsley to brighten up the dish and voilà,you made tasty Marsala pasta!

 You can also make just sauce. Since no meat to make sauce in this case,you want to make ruex first.Add butter, add flour,cook the ruex a little,add dry Marsala wine add chicken broth and done! You can pour it over your nice steak. If you just want hint of wine in steak,when steak is about coming out from skillet,just add splash of wine and add bit of broth and toss a bit of butter,and it makes nice juicy steak without gravy on side.

 Enjoy Marsala dish! Cooking is like an art and you can make dish in thousands of ways! Have fun!

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Sep 11, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Animal rescue transportation-Updated on June 7th,2011

 People welcome new dog family members from various places; breeders,shelters,rescue groups etc and, some people have to put big thoughts on how to transit the new dog family members from far away from home.

 For some, who will welcome dogs from state far away from where they live, they need to think about how they can bring the dogs to their house; car? plane?

 If one could ask other people who could drive one place to the other,where one can meet up at certain place,it would be nice. However,it maybe not easy to find people. And,if you fly with dogs, you need certain documents and need to inform Airline company beforehand and it costs you a lot.

 8 years ago,I used to work for Airline and now and then,we had animals on board. Sometimes,people show up with unexpected animals,and we had hard time accommodating them. Rules might have changed since then,but when I was working for Airlines,they required to make copy of Health cert,rabies shot records and pet release form, and in case of international Airlines like ours,it costs more than hundreds dollars one way. I would imagine required documents or price per animal you would bring to fly with will be much cheaper if domestic flight,but there is limited number of animals that can fly via plane. So, if you think about flying with your new dog to home, call Airline office and ask what they need and ask rules regarding flying with dogs.

 When we had dogs on board, crate usually had to be the size where dog can stand up comfortably,and turn around easily. Then, if you wish to fly with them in cabin,the crate had to be the size where they can place under the seat in front of you..Our plane had about 10″ height under the seat so,in our plane’s case,the crate had to be about under 10″ tall. 

 If car trip and flying with dog were not easy solution for you,you maybe can ask breeders, shelters, animal rescue people where you get your dogs from. They may have good ideas as to how your new dog family member can come to your house easily.

 I came across information on animal rescue flights. Animal rescue flights is a non profit group that was created by pilots,volunteers,and friends. There is no cost. They fly rescue dogs from one place to other where new adopting families are waiting for new dog family. They would not be a replacement for any ground transport,but you would be able to ask them about options you may have. They might come up with suggestions you did not think about. To visit their website, please click here.

 Also there is one more. The place is called Pilots N Paws. This website let those who rescue,foster animals meet with pilots and others who are willing top offer help for transportation. They have forum where you can post request transportation help and ask for suggestions. To visit the Pilots N Paws forum,please click here.

 Recently, I came across a website of a nonprofit rescue transportation organization called “Operation roger”. The group is made up of regional/long haul truckers who volunteer their time to transport animals as they deliver freight nationwide.For more information, you can visit their website here.
 I think all groups are great resource as to animal transportation information. I hope more and more animals will be adopted to new great families around the country.

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Sep 07, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Bank Holiday

 Each country has its own national holidays and holidays are on special days for their culture. It is very interesting to read about what those holidays are and,how it was started. I am not sure which country has most holidays in the world,but living in US and Japan,I see some special holidays or events that exists only in one of the two countries.

 In Japan,we do not have thanksgiving day and we have never eaten Turkey. We do not have Easter holidays. US does not have bon dance festival in summer where people gather at the park and dance in circle to bon dance music,and US does not have Shichigosan when kids aged 3,5,7 visit shrine for health and growth, US does not have tanabata festivals.. I think Japanese culture is getting more westernized and, English language schools in Japan tend to have Halloween party,or other type of party where people can learn more about other culture such as Toga party (Greek) etc.

 Before coming over to the states,I was working for cultural centre and, one of the job I did there was to find teachers that come to the school,teach English to Japanese people. Then,teachers and us (staff) organized parties now and then. At the Halloween party, people dressed up for party and enjoyed food but outside the school, at your own house,you would not expect to have kids knock your door for “Trick or treat”. We had teachers from USA,Britain,Australia,New Zealand.. I had fun talking to them and learn new things through them.

 For me,learning about other culture is one of the things I am interested in and I also like making friends overseas and visit them and learn about their culture. I have been to Britain once,visiting London and small city near Manchester.It was cold weather up there but I had fun, meeting some of my friends there.

 In Britain, sometimes you hear the term “Bank holiday”.  Can you guess what it is??

 According to woodland kent junior school homepage,it says bank holidays are public holidays in other words. Holidays by Royal Proclamation. The bank holidays has started since 1871.It says banks are NOT allowed to operate on those bank holidays. Some of the examples of Bank holidays in England and Wales are Christmas day, Good Friday,New years day,May day,spring holiday,late summer holiday,boxing day etc.

 On those Bank holidays,banks are closed but many of other shops are open except on Christmas day.

 To read woodland kent junior school article on Bank holiday,please click here.

 To read more on bank holiday at wikipedia,please click here.

 Now,which country has most holidays in the world do you think??

 I found one wikipedia page that had list of holidays by countries. (click here)

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Sep 05, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Do dogs feel jealousy?

 Have you ever wondered whether your furry friends can feel and express similar emotions to you?

 This question came to my mind after various scenarios I have witnessed.

 One scenario being, when I got hurt, Palette brought her favorite Halloween ghost squeaky toy to me and drop the toy near me, and stared at me with worry eyes. Is she feeling sympathy?

 Second scenario is when I had surgery, she kept very quiet,no rough play gestures and, she was always around me. As I get better,she became more herself.Is she feeling sympathy?

 Third scenario is that when my husband and I hug each other,she barks loud as if to say she wants to do group hug.
Is she feeling jealousy?

 Fourth scenario is that when one of us being on the phone, Palette trots to her squeaky toy,and start squeaking as if to say she wants attention.
Is she feeling jealousy?

 Fifth scenario is when I go to neighbor’s house and pet their dog,Palette tends to come in between us.
Is she feeling jealousy?

 According to News in science,dogs experience secondary emotions such as pride, shame,guilt,envy, not just primary emotion such as anger, fear etc. Psychologist at University of Portsmouth,Morris, has studied 1000 domestic animals’ owners in England. Result shows, 80% of owners reported that their animals showed jealousy.

 He also studied his own dogs’ behavior by giving lots of attention to one of his dog,less attention to the other.The one that got less attention tried to come in between them.

 He says that dog’s jealousy is different to human jealousy,and their jealousy occur in presence.

 To read more on dog Jealousy at News in science,please click here.

  There is also another interesting study regarding dog’s sense of Jealousy,according to Time. University of Vienna studied pair of domestic dogs. Dogs were asked to put paws on person’s hands and every time they do correctly,one of the dog was rewarded with sausage while other dog were not rewarded in the same way. Study shows that the dog that was not rewarded stopped obeying the command. Psychologist at University of Portsmouth,Morris, explains that dogs want same reward with same works.

 To read full story on dog’s jealousy,please click here.

 Do you think your furry friends show jealousy? If so, what behavior makes you think they show jealousy?

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Sep 03, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized