My favorite thing about living in Korea is the sheer amount of choices I have in terms of food and entertainment. You are never bored, that’s for sure. There is always something new to see, do and EAT! The awesome public transportation also makes it convenient and pretty cheap to travel around the whole country. Back home in NC, most of my conversations with friends consisted of “What do you wanna do?” “Dunno. What do you wanna do?” “Mall?” “Meh, okay.” Ain’t nobody got time for that in Korea. Choose a city to meet in, look up some matjips (popular food places) and crazy attractions (such as a local festival or a sex museum), then hop on a bus or subway. Or you could just go to a random city and wander around – you’d be surprised at how many great hole-in-the-wall shops and restaurants are hiding all around you. If you are more interested in hanging out in Seoul, here is what a typical weekend girly catch-up date may look like (the non-clubbing/barhopping version).
What better way to start off this new year than with a Year of the Sheep cake? Hubs and I had a nice quiet night in, warm and cozy under a fuzzy blanket while watching the crazy crowds freezing their butts off in Jonggak. We actually did that exact same thing three years ago, and now we shake our heads and crack up at ourselves when we reminisce on that crazy night.
Strangely, I do not have the urge to make any new years’ resolutions at all this year. I’ve been waiting and waiting for it to come – that feeling of breathing in a fresh start, setting life-changing goals… Continue reading
While living the foreign life of an expat has plenty of perks and adventures, one major downside is having to spend the holidays apart from your family and friends on opposite sides of the world. On top of that, my husband had to work the night shift on Christmas Eve! But before he had to leave for work at 10PM, he planned a lovely little Christmas Eve date-night that started as soon as I arrived home from work.
Okay. For the next few minutes I’m going to be that girl who brags about how great her hubby is. I don’t like it either, just bear with me if you can. I simply must take a moment to share how much I appreciate this man. I mean, look at what I came home to up there after a long, stressful day at work. A sink (and stove top) full of dirty dishes and pots with a post-it note on the rubber gloves that reads, “don’t touch. go rest ♥”. And from someone who usually never uses English, might I add. I may be biased because he’s my hubby and all, but I’d say that’s pretty post-worthy.
After today’s Summer English Camp lessons were over and the kids went home, I walked over to a nearby Paris Baguette to buy lunch, passing a few of my non-camp students playing in their neighborhood. And suddenly, I was hit with a pang of nostalgia as I watched them accidentally hit a baseball too far and have it land on a nearby car, then start fighting over who’s going to get it. It reminded me of how I used to do just that with my friends when I was little. And incredibly, these kids weren’t hunched over their smartphones or glued to an iPad playing the latest mobile game, which is a rare sight these days. (I’m such a grandma.)
I miss how “summer vacation” used to mean running outside to meet your friends as fast as your legs could carry you after hanging up the house phone, crashing bikes, holding competitions to see who can roll down the hill the fastest, finally mastering your first 360 twirl on your fancy new rollerblades, climbing trees and not knowing how to get back down, doing cartwheels barefoot in the grass until you’re too dizzy to go on, diving into the deep end and fishing out your friend’s goggles from the bottom of the swimming pool, fighting over who’s turn it is to be the mom when playing “house”, racing over to the ice cream truck to buy a Mickey Mouse popsicle with lopsided, melting eyeballs (but we didn’t care, it was the most delicious thing in the world at that moment)… and the worst part of the day was saying bye to go home for dinnertime before your mom threatens to open a can of whoop-ass for being late again.
Every summer, they come back. We don’t necessarily have an infestation, but there always seems to be about two or three little buggers that magically appear out of thin air whenever I sit down to eat. After days of waving them away from my food, what started as a minor nuisance is now gettin’ on my last nerve. No one wants bugs skulking around their food, no matter how small or harmless they seem. Oh look, one just zoomed past my laptop screen as I’m typing. Aaaand there goes his little friend.
Google referred me to several methods, most of which required a disgusting clean-up after drowning the fruit flies in jars of vinegar or rotten fruit. Those methods may get rid of the already existing ones, but there’s really no point in doing them if you’re not cutting them off at the source (they tend to breed inside drains). They’ll just come back. Also, the mere thought of trying to dispose of a concoction with dead bugs floating in it made me gag, so I tracked down an alternative route where I won’t have to deal with the aftermath as well as prevent recurrences.
You will need: 1/2 cup white vinegar and 1/2 cup boiling water. That’s it.
Behold, the Owl Teapot. Let me just start by saying, I am obsessed with owls. I have owl earrings, necklace, wall clock, oven mitts… you get the idea. And now, I have an owl teapot to add to the madness. My husband got this for me a month ago as one of three surprise anniversary gifts, and I’ve used this baby errrrrday to brew my favorite tea. He told me later that he saw this teapot on a random Korean show interviewing a woman in her 50’s who loves all things owl – a.k.a. me in 30 years – and has all sorts of unique home decor and handmade crafts of owls. (How many times can I type ‘owl’ in one post?) He then tracked it down on a Korean website that sells cutesy products like this. Continue reading