Monthly Archives: May 2015

Last Days Frenzy

Today has been a busy day.  I cleaned my room and packed and was finally reading a book and resting when my mom told me that we were leaving for Japan in three days…THREE DAYS!!!  I haven’t even recovered from our San Francisco trip yesterday when we picked up my mom’s visa for going to Japan.  We had already been there three times, and I was tired. Yesterday, I was happy to leave the cold, gray city (with the exception of a pretty little park), but we returned to hot and dry Citrus Heights!!!   The sun has taken all the energy from me, and I am getting sleepier every minute. I went to get some cooler clothes upstairs, but I found that I don’t have any shorts to wear (because everything is packed), so I am trying to survive with jeans (long) and a tank top.  I wish I were Elsa, and that I could make it cold here in California. But even with the heat, I like my room.  It’s pretty with the sunshine bouncing off our tangerine walls, but I wish it were raining.  And now I am going to Japan.  I will miss my Tangerine room.

It is not fun to say goodbye.  But on the other side, it will be fun to say hello to my grandparents in Japan and eat all my favorite Japanese foods.  Three more days….

Japan, Here We Come!

What do five people with five one way tickets to Narita, five passports, six bags plus four boxes and five backpacks equal? The Hiraguri family is moving to Japan!

nuggers23 / Pixabay

On June 2, at 6:30 AM we will board a plane that will take us to the Los Angeles airport. There we will transfer to our JAL plane that will carry us over the pacific and 14 hours into the future (from the west coast time zone). When we arrive, it will be the afternoon of June 3rd in Japan though our bodies will wish they were still tucked into bed like all our friends in the US.

We are finally returning to Japan!

Now as the days swiftly pass, I am beginning to go through the process of saying goodbye. I drive down the street where I grew up to the house where my dad lives and think, “When will I be here again?” and “When will be the next time I see you?” I think of my friends in Kansas City and on the West coast and their children and wonder, “How old will they be when I see them again?” I know I probably shouldn’t but I wonder “when will I have it again” and eat a Twix candy bar, savoring the sweet, crunchy taste.

But, Japan… We have waited four years to go back. Are we ready? Are we sure? What will we do there? Yes and yes and whatever the Father asks us to do. This doesn’t mean we are going without plans or dreams of our own. We definitely have plans; living as a family, teaching and sharing the love of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, being peacemakers, and helping start small house churches are some. But, to do the will of the Father means we are willing to lay aside our personal agendas for His plan when and if He asks us.

In Japan, we will be staying at the house where Akira grew up as a boy.  Please feel free to send us letters and postcards.  We will have to get internet set up in the house and may not have email for a while.  Our address there is:

Akira and Melanie Hiraguri
1504-8 Shimotsuruma,
Yamato, Kanagawa 242-0001

Our priority when we first arrive will be to develop our family rhythms, make a home in Japan, and especially for me, move forward with my Japanese language. We are looking forward to the new challenges and adventures.  Japan, here we come!!!

New Beginnings

The days are passing quickly now.  There are only two more weeks before we go to Japan.  We leave from Sacramento, CA on the morning of June 2nd and will arrive on June 3rd in Narita, Japan.  It is an 11 hour flight but in those 11 hours many things will change.

We say goodbye to grandparents and aunts and uncles and friends.  When will we see them again?  It is a bittersweet moment of sadness to leave those we love and joy to finally be returning to Japan after waiting for 4 years.








When we arrive, night will become day and day night for us because there is a 14 hour difference between the West Coast and Japan.  The food we eat will be different.  The language spoken around us will be different.  The houses, people, and shops will be different.  Our home will be different.  Even where we sleep will be different because we will be sleeping on futons (sleeping mats) on the floor instead of in beds.

IMG_0421But though everything around us will be different, we will not.  We are going to Japan as a family and we are doing it together.   We carry in us the light of Jesus, who is the light of the world, and the love of the Father.    We go in obedience to the Father who has placed His heart for the people of Japan and Okinawa in our hearts and has called us to go and share His love with them.


We are excited to see what the Father is already doing in Japan and Okinawa and what He will do in the future and how we will a part of it.


Hello! I’m Josie

 Hi! My name is Josie.  I am a seventh grader who loves Caramel Frappuccinos from Starbucks and bunnies and griffins.

 I was born in Portland, Oregon, and lived there with my parents and younger brother until I was five and a half.  Then we went to Okinawa, Japan, and we lived there for three and a half years. (I was there from first grade to third grade.)  

I personally think that we were sent there to get to know Okinawa, which is my idea of a vacation.   Okinawa has bright blue skies with a few tiny stretches of white, cotton candy clouds that glide over the tiny tropical island filled with palm trees, bright green plants, fiery bright flowers of all colors, and white sand surrounded by an everlasting wall of turquoise water.   My little sister was even born there…LUCKY!!! 

 After living there three years, we moved back to America, thinking that it was just a temporary thing, but God said “NO!!!”.   We stayed in Oregon for a year, where Josiah (my brother) and I  went to a public school in Portland.  I was in fourth grade, and  it was then that I “re-learned” English.

 When the year passed, we thought we would move back to Okinawa…WRONG!!! Instead, God sent us, of all the places in the world, to KANSAS CITY!!!  We stayed there for about three years, and I really enjoyed it.  My first year there was the weirdest year of my life.  I mean, can you imagine a class with six crazy boys, and three girls, who are all kind of quiet?  It was an interesting year, but I loved it.   My second year was not quite so crazy, but boys just can’t seem to control themselves, can they?  But I like classes with crazy boys, and it was never boring. I realized then that I have a talent for writing short stories and poems and I also have the talent of going extremely crazy at Starbucks. Good times… I made really good friends.  It was a really nice time there and now we are going back to Okinawa.

 People often ask how I feel about this, and, seriously, I feel good. I mean, when God tells you to “go,” you just go, right?  I know he’s got everything ready for us, and all he wants us to do is just “go.”