On the way home from sweet potato picking the other day, Kirsten and I walked home together, and then she came into the house, at which time I feel like I had my first important breakthrough in the uchi/soto barrier.
We came in and talked with the okaasan for awhile, and when Kirsten left the room, okaasan asked me if we wanted anything to eat. When she got back, I asked Kirsten if she wanted a nashi (pearlike apple), and then assumed that okaasan would cut it, since I had never before had the privilege of cutting my own nashi. When she didn't, I figured, "Hey, this is my chance." I dashed into the kitchen, cut it up, served it, and that was that—all in all very exciting! For the first time since I've been here, I wasn't the "guest"—I was sort of "dragged" into the uchi, which was really nice. . .