Friday, December 18, 2009

WeLcOmE hOmE!!!!

After many many hours of traveling, I am back in the USA!! The first thing that we did was head to Chuck-a-Rama for some great food. It is great to be back, and I am having a blast hanging out with my family and getting ready for Christmas.
I already miss the other girls!!! I can't wait to see them again.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


We did it, we actually survived SPECTACLE. We have been preparing for almost 2 months now for our big end of semester program. The kids have been diligently learning dances and English songs along with actions everyday for weeks. They were pretty good sports about it too, even though I am sure they wanted to just throw the props at me every time that I said, "Ok, we have to sing it one more time before we can go to snack." The kids are not the only ones who had to prepare though, the teachers and I also had to perform a dance at the program, and I had a piano solo as well. Why all this work you might ask... Well let's just say that the Chinese are very into presentation. These kids are 4, 5, and 6, and they cannot help the fact that they are these ages, besides the little mess ups that occur just add to the cuteness. Well we think so anyway, but the Chinese teachers don't necessarily agree, and they forced us to work the kids until they could do their skits perfectly. My class sang frosty the snowman, and they did a great job, I was so proud of them. There was also a fashion show featuring the younger class, it was cute beyond description. My family will be forced to watch the movie with me, and also forced to listen to a description of all of the kids little personality quirks...whether they want to or not. Today I had the unfortunate experience of having to say goodbye to my 37 new little friends. Who would have thought that in 4 months we would get so attached to all of their cute little faces? We had a slide show prepared that we watched with the kids, and then the tears started flowing. Some of the kids are old enough to understand that we are leaving, and it was way sad to see them cry about it. The other kids got way confused, they did not understand why all of their teachers were crying, but they were quick to give hugs to try to fix the problem.

For our last night here in Xiaolan we had a big dinner at a nice restaurant with the Principal and some of the Chinese teachers. The food was super good, and there was Karaoke afterward featuring lots of Michael Jackson. It was a great way to end our stay. Tomorrow we start our never-ending journey home. We take a van to another school where we spend the night before taking a ferry to Hong Kong. At about 1:30 PM on Thursday we leave Hong Kong... our destination... the great US of A. We will arrive in LA California on Thursday at about 11:45 AM... yes we are going back in time!!! Too bad the 13+ hour flight couldn't really be negative 2 hours. Anyway eventually we will make it back to SLC where hopefully someone that I recognize will be there to pick me up. Then it is on to Cedar City for a weekend at Megan and Andrew's. I am super excited, I can't wait for all the family fun.

I have had such a great time in China, I still can't believe I have been living here for 4 months. This has been the experience of a lifetime, and I have had the chance to see so many cool places. I am going to miss so many things about China, mostly the kids, my new friends (why is SUU so far away?), the yummy food, and cheap shopping. I am super excited to see my family though, and to eat American food again. After traveling around for a good portion of 2009, I am ready to stay in the states for a while. I am looking forward to Christmas with my family, and getting back to Cedar City for school. Oh and running, I am looking forward to running again, you see none of the other teachers like to run, and since we are not allowed out alone, my running has been very restricted. Since Megan and I are planning on running the half marathon in March, I better get training.

On to my next adventure...

Monday, December 7, 2009


I know this post is a little late, but better late than never.
We had a great Thanksgiving here in China. Oddly enough the Chinese do not eat turkey, they will eat just about any other animal, but there are no turkeys to be found. We had to teach on Thanksgiving, but as soon as we were done, the 3 girls that I share an apartment and I started Thanksgiving dinner #1. This dinner consisted of some microwaveable stuffing and turkey, mashed potatoes, beef and potatoes, and some chicken and pasta dish. Obviously we have been in China way too long because even these microwaveable meals tasted amazing to us.
Later that night we had Thanksgiving dinner #2. We invited the cook and his wife, the guard and his wife, Annie (our coordinator) and her boyfriend, and a few of the Chinese teachers. There were 18 of us total. We made some mashed potatoes, pumpkin cookies, corn bread, jello, pudding, stuffing, and even a pumpkin pie. Annie made some Chinese food too. After all the cooking was done the feast stared. Our Chinese friends were very hesitant to try the American food but we eventually got them to. Once they tried it they really liked it, especially the mashed potatoes. They were so happy that we had invited them to our Thanksgiving dinner.

Just a few of the things I am even more thankful for since coming to China:
Soft couches
Boneless meat
Ok just American food in general!!
Normal showers
My family and friends
The cute kids we teach
Purified water systems
Only having to drive about 10 minutes to get to church
Cheap China shopping


A post for my little buddy back in America. This is ULTRAMAN, he is the biggest Chinese action figure around. Why you might ask??—well his ability to make himself get bigger and bigger might have something to do with it.
In the series the Science Patrol is always ready to protect the Earth from rampaging monsters, but sometimes finds itself overmatched. When the situation becomes desperate, Hayata, the Patrol's most capable member, holds the key to salvation in the form of a power-object called a "Beta Capsule", which, when ignited, allows him to transform secretly into the amazing, super-humanoid-powered giant from space—Ultraman.

I hope Parker enjoys this, can't wait to see him in less than 2 weeks!!!