The Year of The Dragon…

January 14th

Oh whatta day!

My new activity twice a month: Volunteering at the Gimhae 방주원 Orphanage. (http://bangjuwon.org/) It’s going to be amazing and I can’t wait to share about these beautiful children. Stories and pictures to come.

There’s 3 people who are leaving to go back to the states that volunteered there so a couple of us who are going to be here for awhile are going to start going as well as another girl who has already been volunteering. After our afternoon of fun and games we had Uzbekistani food. It was pretty good…

I don’t think I could have prepared myself for the Swedish Film, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” dubbed “Millenium: The Girl Who Hates Men,” in Korea. We saw the English version with subtitles being in Korean. In the overall grand scheme, it was a great movie. However, there were a couple scenes I felt nauseous in and had to leave. I couldn’t handle the graphics. Luckily, Sarah stepped out with me and we shared a Sprite. The lid had two straw holders. Pretty much got us laughing and back into the theater. Oh Korea!

In Korea everything’s designed to be shared ;]김 해 신 에 마- with Sarah
January 22nd

I’m on holiday thru Wednesday. Happy Lunar New Year!

Just spending the holiday relaxing and getting caught up on life. Lots of reading and sleeping. But I’m ok with not traveling for a bit…need to look at the bigger picture to save money- my goals when I came to teach here: to learn, to experience another culture, and to save. With the first month of the new year already coming to a close I need to refocus my goals and challenge my mind.

Recap of the previous week:

My yoga teacher and the other ladies discussed my love life and how I should find a boyfriend and using the handphone translator tells me to make lots of love and have babies. Wonderful. After class my yoga teacher gives me a hug and tells me that she loves me in perfect English- so sweet! 🙂

My lovely sister bought her plane ticket to come visit me in April! 3 Months until I’m going to give her the biggest hug ever!

typical skyline of Jangyu- construction!

One of my phonics kids rolled his eyes at me and told me my class was boring after we had been playing games and asking fun questions; for his punishment I made him read the words out of order- just to challenge him because he kept saying he knew the words. Felt a smidgen guilty for doing so, but that’s my biggest pet peeve ever- other students who want to learn are watching and even the good ones start acting up because they see that he can get away with it. My co-teacher just ignored the situation even when I told her it bothered me. Some of my Level 4 Phonics kids don’t know the ABCs- much less can read whole words/sentences, even some of my upper level students can’t read the word “the.” Apparently skill doesn’t matter as long as they’re in a high class that corresponds with their grade…otherwise these kids would still be on Level One- and we couldn’t have that (huh parents?). I wish that the parents wouldn’t think of “speaking” English as a high class skill that they pay lots of money for just to say that their kid goes to an English program.

Quotes of the week:

“Teacher, how much is the alphabet?”
“I’ll give you 50 million won if you loose your stomach.”

January 24


Day 2 of the Lunar New Year festivities. And my mini vacation from my students. I spent the yesterday evening discussing religion and my beliefs and it really showed me how little I can express myself when it makes perfect sense in my head. My friend whom I was discussing this with pointed that out; I’m not judging you and I appreciate the fact that you stand up for what you believe in, but just know that in order to have an effective argument your thoughts should be presented in a logical manner.

Chocolate mushrooms! 🙂

Today was a change of conversation. I had coffee with a friend I had met through the coffee shop lady. We had met a few times in passing, but she said she wanted to talk to me. Our discussion was about how God was working in our lives and how he was guiding us to His will. We talked about how hard it was to share the gospel with others. It was a wonderful talk and I am truly thankful for each of these people to challenge
me.

new notebook— gotta love it!
Natural Korean meds- Don’t ask what it says…
Friends!
“You’re about to enter a world of Ghetto”

January 30


I don’t know where the time goes. It’s already the end of January. Only one more day of morning work, then back to the afternoon schedule. I must admit the break was a nice change- up, but am anxious to work in the afternoons again. I like having my mornings to relax. I found out today that the kindergartners get 2 weeks off; so every other day I only have 4 classes and will be out at 5:30. Then when they come back to school; I think I have that class early every other day so will still be getting out at 5:30. Love walking into this news on a Monday!

My cough is back and today in yoga class my teacher called one of the girls that goes who speaks English to have her take me to the doctor; at least it’s traditional Korean medicine- aka acupuncture. According to the girl the yoga teacher is super worried about my cough. (aww)

It takes an odd knock at the door around 7 p.m. and 2 strange smoke-smelling Korean men (who finally got across to me that they were maintenance) trying to have a conversation with me in Korean (when clearly I don’t speak it) and lots of pointing and calling my director (who wasn’t much help as he doesn’t speak much English either) to change a lightbulb (I can’t reach it). No more cooking in the dark. But really…talk about awkward!

I received the nicest email today from a dear friend. She is going to have her first baby in about 4 days! I am so thrilled for her and her husband. I was in their wedding about 3 years ago and I am so blessed to have them in my life. They truly are a great couple and will make amazing parents.

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