At long last! I finally got my art up and remembered to take photos of my little Japanese apato. This is my "living room/lounge" and frequently where I sleep. I either throw my futon on the tatami floor in one of these rooms or fold the couch down and sleep on it.
When they were renovating my house last year I came in to find a huge hole in my floor - the workers had taken a section of the tatami out, and were underneath my house fixing pipes...well, no WONDER I froze last year...underneath the straw tatami mat is maybe a 1/4" piece of plywood, and then 3 feet of AIR and then soil! BUT I LOVE the tatami anyway. You can see I have a TV set, but since NHK charges you for just HAVING one, I disconnected the cable and never watch Japanese TV. Not that I watched much in the US anyway - the TV is now mostly just a stand for my year-round Christmas tree. On the right side of the top photo is a sliding glass door to a verandah, and out the window in the back is a hill up to an elementary school playground.
One piece of furniture of interest is that square table in the middle of the back room. It's a "kotatsu" and it's your best friend in winter! Underneath is a framework holding a heater, and you put a blanket between that and the top of the table (it really IS safe-). Many a night I sat and read there - getting as much of my body underneath it as possible! Please post questions - I'm beginning to forget what's "foreign" about my place!