Sunday, October 29, 2006
i got a cool "running around town" backpack in toy alley which was my big purchase for the day!
after the morning trip i felt a bit worn out and my throat hurt......again! i am really tired of the sore throat business. i called suzy and she went with me down the hill to an acupuncturist that one my student's parents recommended. his office is an actual oriental medical clinic. dr. moon speaks good english and was able to help me out all for a mere 4,500 won......yes that is only about 5 US bucks!!! WILD! i love this place when it comes to this kind of stuff. i will definitely go back. :) then we headed to sahruga, the local grocery store. suzy needed some things and i went along for the ride. she did help me make a sahruga card (the korean version of the kroger card) the only difference is with this card you earn points or something. neither one of us is real sure what it does exactly, but now we have one. :) my favorite item lately is the dark purple korean grapes! they are absolutely yummy! i worry when i move back to the states that i won't be able to have them any more. :( at christmas i am going to ko-mart on gessner and see what i can come up with there. i also want to check on some other items that i have become accustomed to. :) KOREAN GRAPES RULE!!! i also like cappuccino milk.....only in korea can i find the goodness. coffee in a can is also on my shopping list regularly.........not the best solo, but makes a great morning mixer with milk for a little latte action. the coffee in a can is chilled so it makes for a good morning wake up drink.
suzy also got us some street food for dinner----mandu, kimchi mandu, and the other stuff she likes a lot that comes with liver. i ate the mandu and left the sausage looking stuff that is boiled in pig's blood to her with her livery stuff too. interesting the things my friends eat! we managed our way home and ate dinner and had good time together chatting and conversing about the latest mental thoughts we had. we "window-shopped" online......she showed me her favs in the UK and i told her mine. then i gave her the picture tour of pics i have on my computer from home. it was fun!
today, after not sleeping well due to the throat action, i got up and went to church............throat still killer painful! thank goodness for some halls throat lozenges that i packed with me. we went to starbucks as usual.....i contemplated if i should get a warm drink or not since i had already had a cup of tea at my apartment that did not really help out that much. church was different today.....we had a missionary from china visiting and he preached on evangelism. a bit old style korean preaching from what suzy said and it did not do a thing for me. instead i read through acts.....starting with chapter 10 which is where the sermon was from. i just kept reading and making notes for myself. good stuff though! i had church in my head i guess. after we got these chicken on a stick deals in the church patio area.....they are yummy! then yes as always i got some hotteok before walking to the subway! good times! i love sundays! :) they rock! we made our way back to our side of town and made a pit stop in edae for some afternoon shopping. i just tagged along as i don't find anything here that fits me. jamie, wyatt, and suzy all made purchases......i just people watched. it was interesting to say the least.....always great people watching here in seoul. the fashion in itself is worth the watching.......it varies greatly and makes you wonder what they were thinking before they left the house, but somehow have managed to make it look good.
i snapped pics on the walk home of the changing colors of trees on yonsei university. check out the new pics...........you should have received an email about the new picture location. if you did not email me asap so i can clue in on how to get there so you can see all the pics that you have anxiously been waiting on for the last two months...........
i came home, drank more tea, and have been doing lots of nothing since. suzy came by to hang out and wanted me to help her set up her skype account. i updated addresses and other random stuff. i worked on my kids scholastic book order and attempted to pay bills, but all the companies are updating their web sites today so i have to wait until tomorrow.
this week should be an easier week......back to normal for the most part. i have parent conferences beginning thursday evening and all day friday. i would ask for prayers for this. the parental situation here is completely different than back home. i am praying that all will go well and there is no major issues.
19 days until katie arrives here in far east asia to visit
25 days until thanksgiving....yes, we are having a proper dinner with turkey
48 days until i am home for the christmas holiday in texas
59 more days until paul and i are dating one whole year.....how time flies
Saturday, October 28, 2006
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Samulnori Performance---6th graders from a Korean school outside of Seoul
making Korean hanji boxes with my kids
my finished Korean hanji box
3 and a half weeks until katie comes to korea and 6 and a half until i come home at christmas!!!! :)
it is now 54 degrees currently in korea............bbbbbbbbbbbbrrrrrrrr!!!!!
Monday, October 23, 2006
saturday i made homemade french toast again. i added some vanilla to the mix this time and it did not really make a difference to me. it was good. i then used the rest of the day to be a bum and rest! it was great! later saturday evening i went up to school to work in my room. normally this would be a big no- no for me, but i really wanted to get some things done and get caught up. i made my own reading assessment kit based on stuff i used at home and some of the resources we have here. i was thrilled that i got it all done. you would have been well entertained had you seen me in front of the copy machine though. i had the music jamming in my ears from my dell dj and i was dancing and praising around the copy room. it was great fun! no one was there......i was the only one working so i had the whole school to myself. fab-0!!! i left about 10:20ish after being very productive! i came home to watch more friends!!! i am almost finished with season 2. i think i have only 2 or so more episodes to go. luckily there is a girl here named launa who has all ten seasons. whew! what would i have done??? thank God for her! she is in my ladies small group on monday nights here at my apartment. :)
sunday was the usual-----starbucks, church, hotteok, and for lunch we went to bennigan's. not the same as home, but sufficed. then suzy, wyatt, and i went shopping in edae. well, suzy and wyatt shopped i just tagged along for the walk.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
sunday i went to church and the message was amazing! the guy who spoke was an onnuri pastor who has spent the last year starting a church in NYC. his name is mark choi and his sermon was about turning the world upside down. he referenced acts 17 when paul and silas "stir things up" in thessalonia. it was really inspiring and thought provoking. after church as always i had my favorite after church treat--hotteok.
jamie, suzy and i then headed to carrefour for some groceries and things. carrefour is a shopping mall area that is attached to the world cup stadium. inside there is tons of stuff---movie theater, wedding hall, doctor, shopping area, grocery store, two food areas, etc. it is wild! first we had lunch at lotteria, which is a korean version of burger king or mcdonald's. the burgers taste a bit different than american ones, but they are good. they also have a wide variety of types of burgers you can get. for example, they have bulgogi burgers, bulgalbi burgers, rice and kimchi burgers, shrimp burger.....the list goes on. it was really interesting to figure out what to eat.....i went with a cheese burger. :) then we went shopping. the place was sooo packed with people. they were everywhere. we finally finished and made out way to the very crowded register area. jamie had been all checked out when her american credit card did not go through. agh! it was so frustrating for her. thank goodness we had suzy to translate some. jamie grew up here in korea and she speaks better korean than most americans, but when the conversation gets our of her vocabulary range it can become challenging. suzy was able to fill in the blanks. :) suzy and i then checked out while jamie tried to call the company. she had to leave all her stuff there to go home, make the call, and hope to go back to pay. we had to walk to the street to get a taxi and we ended up walking in the middle of the road to try to get one....it seemed like there were none to be found. we were laughing since we were walking in and out of cars the whole time. finally i spotted one and we managed to make our way over to him. he took us a back way through neighborhoods which was nice considering i had not seen many neighborhoods. then we arrived home, jamie used my skype to call her credit card company which was also frustrating for her. no one seems to quite understand when you mention that you live in another country and are trying to get things straightened out. they always want you to call back during normal business hours which is always when we are sleeping....ugh! she managed to get someone who could help her and then we headed back to carrefour to make the purchase. the whole way we are praying that it will work this time. we got a taxi, made it inside, found the basket with jamie's stuff that they were holding for her, and then made our way to the same register. thankfully we did not have to wait in line again. she slid the card and........YES it worked! jamie was so thankful. we gathered the stuff and made our way back to the street to get a taxi home........yeah!
once we were back at my apartment i made the three of us dinner----grilled chicken breasts, green beans, and some rice. they liked it a lot. i made some extra chicken so that i could have lunch for a couple days. yummy! then we just all hung out at my apartment----jamie did school work, i organized my book case, and suzy replied to emails. it was good times!
monday and tuesday were pretty normal days. each week i am feeling better about school. friday is the end of the 1st quarter which is nice. i am nervous about the report cards and then parent conferences. i am already starting to pray about them. they will be on nov. 2nd and 3rd. we are already thinking about next year. we have to make the overseas order by the middle of november for it to arrive in time. i am trying to manage to organize some materials so i can decide what things i need to order that we dont have.
monday night i hosted a group of ladies for a book study small group. we are reading The Self Confident Woman by janet congo. it is the same book that my ladies group did back home last spring. it is an awesome read and one i think that we can learn a lot from. i had 4 ladies show up and another one will be coming on monday. so 6 total including me. makes for a nice size group. we had some great discussion this week and it went well. i was nervous about it before b.c i have never lead a group before and i did not want it to be "too" structured, but wanted more of a casual, laid back kind of vibe. they all enjoyed it and appreciated the fact that i took the initiative to get a group started. that was reassuring.
before they showed up i was buzzing around picking up my house. then i sat down on the couch with my dinner and was listening to some music when i just had this sense of peace and quiet. it was nice to be able to reflect on where i have been in the last two years and think how God has brought me to Korea and the other great things that are going on. it was really enjoyable to just sit here on the couch and be able to really have a moment. :) yeah for those kind of undistracted quiet moments............
tuesday after school we had a long faculty meeting............it seemed to never end. it just amazes me how people complain and frown at decisions that are made about things. i dont always agree, but i am trying hard to be able to just aceept it and be proactive rather than just to react about it. it amazes me how people get hung up on such little things when they are just "small fries" in the bigger picture.
i made some pizza when i got home. then i tried to hammer some curriculum stuff out on the computer. it did not go as well as i had hoped but i did make some progress. suzy came around to hang out and chat some. that was nice and a good time of conversation. then i prepared a salad for the rest of the week for lunches. yummy! she had some hot tea and we continued to talk. wyatt also showed up later and we all got to just hang out and talk about lots of stuff. good times! i like that my house has become the "hang out" zone. :)
today i was really tired all day. in fact after school i came home to lay down for an hour before going to dinner and i ended up sleeping for WAY longer. i slept from 4:30-7 and i woke up moved to the couch and slept a few more hours. wow! i guess i needed the rest. i had some cheese toast for dinner.
all this week i have been coming home for lunch at my apartment. it has been really nice to get away in the middle of the day and eat lunch at my table. i get to fix it up and have some quiet, down time. i feel really "on top" of things when i do this. i wash the dishes and go back to school quite refreshed. i never imagined that 30 or 40 minutes at home can do that to you. i love living 4 minutes from my job. :) definitely has its bonuses!
59 more days until i come home for christmas!!!!!!! i am looking forward to the time i will get to spend with family and friends. i really understand how important you all are to my life and how i miss you. i like life in korea and enjoy the adventure, but i miss the people from my life that i am have sometimes taken for granted. thanks for being my friends and the support and encouragement you all give!
until next time...................................................
Sunday, October 15, 2006
then i came home and had to be at the mills' house for 6pm to watch their kids. mum and dad were headed out to a british school dinner and i was going to hang out with my 3 friends, arthur, isaac, and florence. it was good fun! we watched the BBC DVD of walking with dinosaurs. i learned about sea monsters. then i played a mix n match game with florence. after that i had a go at frustration! (board game like trouble) with the kids. i lost.....3rd place. arthur won! bed time called after the game so we read two stories and then called it a night. i laid with them for a bit until they were asleep. i spent the rest of the night reading a travel book about korea. it was nice to spend time with them! they are wonderful kids! :)
Saturday, October 14, 2006
Friday, October 13, 2006
ian (a campus kid) had a praying mantis in a plastic container that he found here on campus. he claims that he has had it for about 2 weeks now. he caught a grasshopper today and fed it to the praying mantis. i have never seen a bug "go to town" on dinner. the praying mantis was muching away on the grasshopper. it was really rather intriguing actually. i went to tell my friend isaac about it so he could watch as well. :) we both sat in wonder and he explained to me that bugs are full of plants b.c that is what they eat all the time. i was asking him whether he thought the praying mantis was an herbivore or carnivore. he then went off searching for bugs to feed his pet spider. i helped him find an ant and he put it into the bug cage he has. :) florence and isaac then came over for a bit to see my house and meet sam and india. they were pretty taken by the cats. isaac even drew a picture of them for me. :) we had fun playing with them and watching them. i walked them home and played at their house for a while before coming back to have some down time at my house. i am tired and trying to rest so i can get rid of the allergy junk.
yeah that tomorrow is saturday.....................
Thursday, October 12, 2006
then we went to the pharmacy to get my prescription. on this one corner there are like 3 pharmacies to choose from.....we picked one and went in. again i just smiled and nodded as the man spoke to me in korean. we took a seat to wait and a lady came up to offer us a beverage. little bottles with vitamin c drink in them. they are quite good and i was entertained that they would offer a drink while you wait. then the man called my name and spoke to me more in korean pointing to the prescription written in english. i knew what to do so i was not too worried. the odd thing is that they give the pills to you in a little plastic baggie instead of a bottle like back home. i also got a free pill organizer. score! :) it only cost 5,200 for 30 days worth.
we were both starving by this time so helen suggested the sushi place across the street. it is called niko niko (not the greek place) although i had to laugh at the name. the menu was all in korean but thank goodness there were pictures. i ordered a chicken on the run roll and helen got a spicy tuna roll. great place! the tuna roll was 7,000 and mine was 9,000. yummy! mine was like a california roll and then it had a small piece of fried chicken on top with honey mustard sauce dribbled over the top. good stuff! it was a place i will definitely go back to. many different choices of rolls and the prices were reasonable. :) suzy joined us later in the meal.
i needed to get my birks' sole fixed as they were almmost worn down to the cork bed. i had been trying but the little shoe guy where no where to be found each time i passed by. tonight i thought i would try again and suzy was there to speak korean. this was an experience. here we are the three of us sitting in this little shoe repair booth on a busy street watching this older korean man repair my sandals. now most of you at this point are imagining that he replaced the whole sole like usual on a pair of birks.......oh no! he had much different tactics. basically, he carved a bit to fill in the part that was really worn down on both of them and glued it in. then he placed a black tready part over that and the front part. it was a wild thing to watch. i really felt as if he were violating my sandals. no place else like korea would you get a show repair such as this. he did a great job and was very meticulous, but just really odd for a pair of birks. now my sandals are heavier and a little higher. it made me laugh.
then suzy and i made our way to Bible study at yonsei. we were a bit late as the shoe guy took a bit to repair my birks. it was a great time of fellowship and one i am trying hard to commit to. after we walked home and i stopped in to say hi to my friends, the dornbachs. they also are a birk wearing family and got a laugh out of my new and improved birk soles. :)
today was an ok day. nothing to major or minor went on. for dinner there was a korean cultural dinner which i went to for the new teachers. a way to learn more about the korean culture and food. we had bulgogi for dinner......yummy! the food was great and the talk informative. now i am at home just hanging out with sam and india. i am thankful tomorow is friday. i hope to rest this weekend and just hang out. :)
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Monday, October 09, 2006
Sunday, October 08, 2006
since i last posted i have had my kids participate in a farmer's dance on the field, moved classrooms, witnessed my students squeal with delight at the site of our empty new room, listened to beethoven's violin concerto in D major and bruckner's symphony no. 7 in E major by the kbs symphony orchestra with guest violionist vadim repin, hiked around a bamboo forest, rubbed elbows with intangilble culture property, heard more traditional korean music, taken lots of photos, been to a couple of inservices and worked hard in my classroom to sort it out, had an acupuncture treatment, spent 90% of the last four days in my pajamas being a bum around my house resting, watched more friends and scrubs, cuddled with sam and india, had a manicure and a pedicure, been homesick, had a few starbucks, went to church, made a commitment to not be such a wimp about going to my small group with church, made dinner for the first time in my apartment and had jamie over to share it with me, had another acupuncture treatment, and played with the mills' kids and managed to get shot with a water gun in the process!
now i am just sitting here updating my blog..........reflecting on the holiday and the past few months here in korea, my new home. realizing that i am really far away from my first home, family, and friends. i am realizing just how much each one of the people in my life mean to me.....even though i may not see all of them all the time or even on a regular basis........being 7,047 miles away from any of them makes my heart feel sad. just yesterday as i walked back from the nail place i asked God to make it really clear as to why i am here in korea. i know that there is a purpose for me here even though some days i wonder. i asked Him to comfort my homesickness and to fill me up with Him when i long for and miss my family and friends. i asked God to show me how to be strong in this new place of growth even when it feels impossible. i am learning quickly that i have to lean on Him.