Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Pictures for Lydia

I got an email from Lydia last week saying that in all of the pictures on my blog I was wearing a hat and or a hoodie. She wanted to know were her "cute dressing sister went." All of the posts lately have been from the weekends and I usually dress casually then. So I decided to take a picture everyday last week of what I was wearing for work. By the third day I ran out of poses so some are a little weird! Here is the slideshow I created. You can blame my sister for this one!

I got an email from Lydia last week saying that in all of the pictures on my blog I was wearing a hat and or a hoodie. She wanted to know were her "cute dressing sister went." All of the posts lately have been from the weekends and I usually dress casually then. So I decided to take a picture everyday last week of what I was wearing for work. By the third day I ran out of poses so some are a little weird! Here is the slideshow I created. You can blame my sister for this one!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Wayward Sons Have Returned

I heard some rustling behind my desk around 1:30am. I went over to check my email and a I was replying to someone I saw Link run across the floor. He was hiding so went to find Ollie. He was sleeping behind my desk curled up in my guitar case. It took me 30 minutes to catch Link. I am sure it was his idea to escape and Ollie just followed along. I have taken some measure to ensure this does not happen again. If it does I know the first place I am looking...my guitar case!

My New Friends Are Gone

I went to say goodnight to Link and Oliver and they were gone. I do not know if they have escaped and are now roaming around my room. I sure hope this is not the case! I did leave the food out for them though just in case. I still can't figure out how they escaped. I can't imagine someone coming into my room and taking two hamsters without their cage. Also nothing else has been disturbed. I sure hope this doesn't foreshadow my parenting skills! They only lasted 4 short days. Maybe they will come back. Does anyone know how to lure a hamster back to its cage?

Sunday, December 17, 2006

First Snow Fall of the Year

It doesn't snow here very often so when I saw that eerie glow outside my window I knew it was snowing! A few minutes later I heard a bunch of the guys from the dorm start yelling outside. I don't know what they were saying because it was in Korean but they sure seemed to be having fun. I think we will get a few inches which should stop the city in its track tonight and tomorrow. Here are a few pictures of the first snow fall. Kelly was talking on the phone to her boyfriend so you only get pictures of me. Sorry!

This snowball later became the base to my snowman.

My cute very quickly built snowman. My fingers were already numb at this point but I had to build one!

It was fun playing in the snow. I hope it sticks around awhile. My bike ride to church should be fun in the morning. I think it will be the first time I have ridden a bike in the snow.

Meet Link and Oliver

Today I got myself an early Christmas present. I saw these dwarf hamsters in the store about a month ago and I feel in love. They are so cute. I hope they don't get too smelly though and they are both the same sex!!

Here is their home. I added a nesting box tonight.

This is Oliver or Ollie for short.

This is Link.

Trip to Seoul

Last weekend Kelly and I took another trip into Seoul. this time we went to meet with a family she taught last year. They are great kids and their English is wonderful. We test Koreans English by how Kelly and I speak to one another. If we can have a normal conversation and they understand, their English is very good. Normally, they can't understand our conversations! Mandy and Kara could so we had to be careful what we walked about when they were around, i.e. their behavior or our plans for the day.
We were suppose to stay with them at their house which was going to be great. However, their dad had a cold so they got us a hotel room. It was such a nice hotel, nicer than a lot I have stayed at in the States. it even had a western style breakfast buffet! We had a great time and I ate some new foods. I also learned to play a Korean game! Here are a few pictures from my trip.

Mandy(all the way in the back), Kara, Kelly, David, and me

It was nice to see a familiar sign and right next door their was a Starbucks!

Here is the view from our 14th floor hotel room.

COEX Mall had a Star Wars Exhibition going on so we took Kara and David to check it out. Mandy was at an institute. Each of the children go to at least 7 private institutes besides going to school 6 days a week. this is very common in Korea, but I think it is crazy! Sorry if I made any Star Wars fans jealous out there!!

This is one of those spinning tunnels.

I had a wonderful time and I am really glad Kelly invited me to come along. Mandy, Kara, and David will be heading to Canada at the beginning of the year with their mother to study abroad for a year. It is also very common for the family to go to another country and leave the father behind to work here in Korea. Many parents send their elementary school children to study abroad and both parents stay here. This is one thing about Korea that I will never understand.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree

Last night I put up the Christmas tree for this year. Today at lunch time Kelly came over to help decorate. I know our tree is totally ghetto but Kelly did say, "this is the best Christmas tree I have had in 6 years!" She has been traveling and teaching abroad for 6 years now so she hasn't had a real American Christmas in a really long time. They do have some Christmas decorations but a 2 ft. tree is about 40,000 won or $40. So I opted for the cheaper version! Well without further a due here is our Christmas tree complete with wrapped present courtesy of Lydia.

No this is not the completed tree, just a shot before it was decorated.

I printed coloring book pages out and colored them myself to use as ornaments.

We even have stocking, not hung by the chimney though!

Kelly and I in front of our super ghetto Christmas Tree.

I am preparing a wonderful Christmas menu this year. But it is a secret so I can't post it until after Christmas!! For the most part of the day it will be Kelly, Addie (another "Migook" or American), and myself. In the evening we will be having a party with many of our students. I am looking forward to Christmas already.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Ten Minute Mile

I finally did it!! I ran a mile today in 9 minutes and 59 seconds. I am super excited! Hopefully my time will continue to improve over the course of the year. I am going to time myself at least once a week.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Trip to the Big City of Seoul

This weekend I went to Seoul for my first visit to the "big city!" I had a lot of fun. The best part of the trip was that McDonald's is now serving breakfast. This has just started to happen here so I got a sausage, egg, and cheese McMuffin. It was awesome! Here are pictures of our "delicious" breakfast. Koreans use "delicious" to describe every kind of food even if it is just normal.

It also snowed while we were in Seoul. Here are some pictures I took at the half way stop. I don't know if I have mentioned this or not but Seoul is 2 1/2 or 3 hours away depending on traffic.

I also got to go to Starbucks. Actually, I went twice. The first time when we first got to CoEx Mall. I go an iced Carmel Macchiato (I think that is how you spell it!). The second time, right before we left the mall, I got a grande Christmas blend. It was wonderful, even though Caribou is much better. I am getting a coffee pot soon!

While we were waiting for the bus back to Jeonju I decided to take Christmas pictures. There are very few decorations in Jeonju so I thought I would do the best with what I had. So when I send out my Christmas letter you will see these pictures again.

I had a great time and we are headed back next weekend to visit a family Kelly knows. I am really looking forward to this because I haven't had a chance to interact with any children outside of my class since I have been here. I will keep you posted on the happenings here in South Korea!

Thanksgiving Dinner

I had to work on Thanksgiving Day so we celebrated on Sunday. I had a great time. it started off with an early morning run. I only ran 1 1/2 miles because my knee has been hurting whenever I run. Then we went back to get cleaned up for the day. I made Kelly and I sausage gravy and biscuits, my mom's recipe. It was wonderful! Then I clean up my house while Kelly finally got to talk with her brother using my web cam. She has a Mac and can't find any programs that will allow her to use her web cam. If you know of any let me know please!

Around 2pm we had some of Kelly's students come over for Salmon and wine. I didn't know any of these students but they were w\very nice. here is a picture of the group. Kelly had her mom send the Salmon from Seattle. I am not a big fish person so I didn't have any but everyone else enjoyed it immensely.

After Kelly's students left I had some students come over for a mostly traditional Thanksgiving. I was not able to find a Turkey and even if i could i would not have been able to cook it. I had what I thought was ham but it was more like SPAM!! All of the Koreans loved it though. I made mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots with honey, green beans, and corn. For desert I made peach cobbler and Kentucky Derby Pie with a homemade crust. It was so much fun to get together and I really enjoyed the cooking too. Here are a few pictures.

Kelly and I

Steve (a student) volunteered to do dishes!

Steve, Choice, Tae, Kelly, Lee, Bryan, Miles, Tina, Me
(Top to bottom and left to right)