Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Kennedy's Aquarium Field Trip

I am trying desperately (and unsuccessfully) to keep up with everything right now! I want to get all of these old pictures posted since I'll have new ones after spring break. The kids have been impatiently counting down the days until Lidi, Uncle Evan, and Aunt Jen arrive!

I finished grading my first round of articles yesterday. And even though Cade and I spent the morning on a play date and now he is playing nicely by himself, I still can't get motivated to start the next round. I guess it's because technically my spring break started yesterday, but really the only break in sight for me is summer break. I. can. not. wait.

A week or two after my dad left, Kennedy's class went to the aquarium, so we got to see the other aquarium in Seoul. This one is at Coex Mall.

This one screams "Korea" in different ways than the other one did. 

First, there's the miniature pagoda and park scene...with painted trees on the walls...

then there's the weird fish tanks...this one appears to have a baseball stuck in it.

This is a diver in a a phone booth of all things...

Then you have the Lego men swimming with the fish...

And, of course, the ever-present photo opportunity...

This was a pretty hilarious photo opportunity. Forty Kindergarteners and siblings lined up...

and thirty mothers of Kindergarteners trying to get a picture...

There were some pretty cool tanks on the other side, though.

There was even a moving walkway all the way around this case you were tired of actually picking up your feet!

There were no synchronized swimmers in these tanks as there were at the 63 Building,

but there were some pretty big sharks, rays, and manatees...

I was impressed with the jellyfish tank! Great colors!

The kids were excited to see the penguins because they had been studying them for the past month.

Afterwards, we had lunch in the large lunch room that they had.

We were just one of many schools at the aquarium that day!

Alright. I must get to work. Only 150 more papers to grade, one Shakespeare play to read, and two units to plan. I. can. do. it.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Aston House Dinner

Our staff dinner, hosted by the parents of one of my students, was a few weeks ago. Last year, I took a lot of pictures and documented the evening well, but this year I was a bit lazy...

That morning we got more snow, but thankfully, it was gone by the evening. It's finally warming up! Eric had a stressful afternoon before the dinner. This year, they planned it on a Friday night, which is always tough! Eric wanted to get home to see Cade for minute or two, so he planned to bring Kennedy home after swim lessons at 4:30.

Then, he had to change and get back to school by 5:00 to catch the bus. The taxi they got into when leaving school got into an accident, which stalled them (everyone was fine), and then he had to catch another taxi back to school after dropping Kennedy off. On top of all that, he left the last of his cash with the babysitter to buy dinner, so I had to meet him outside so that I could pay the cab driver. Yikes! It's a miracle we made it at all!

This year, they also had caricatures and a photo booth in addition to karaoke. We were still in line for our caricature when it was time to go, though, so we missed out on that!

Eric's friend, Bennett, was elected to sing, so he decided Eric should be tortured, as well. They opted for the theme to Ghostbusters. It was entertaining, to say the least!

They had some great props for the photo booth that these guys totally rocked!

They took a picture of us and printed it, so I didn't bother to have a picture of us taken with my camera...sorry! This is the best you get!

Of course, they had the ice mold again this year.

And they sent us home with another delicious cake! No Christmas tree to take the picture in front of this year, though...

So, this, this, this, and this are the reasons why I have not been blogging much lately. My students finally finished the websites that they have spent the last quarter working on--which means I have a lot of grading to do before grades are due. Please check them out, but keep in mind my students are still learning a lot about the revision process! 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Kennedy's Win!

So, today Kennedy came home with a major score! (And Eric laid a major guilt trip for no blog posts, which is why you're hearing about it already.)

One of the perks of going to such a nice international school, is the amazing PTO. Sometimes, as a staff member and parent, I feel a little awkward about the PTO--I'm sure some of you can understand. Like today, when I got the email asking me if I wanted to make a salad for the Teacher Appreciation luncheon...well, no, I wouldn't, but I would like to enjoy the luncheon! And last week, when I got the email asking if I would like to donate something to the silent auction at the International Bazaar coming up...well, that would be strange...what would I donate? Certainly not an expensive camera!

Anyway, this past month the elementary school has been doing a read-a-thon, sponsored by the PTO. When I read the list of prizes, I laughed out loud! They were ridiculously expensive for rewards for elementary students...the kinds of things that would never be given away in a public school in Stanwood. Today, in walked my Kindergartener with a new camera. A brand new Samsung Galaxy 4G LTE camera (worth over $500). This thing is ridiculous! It's practically a phone (if you put in a SIM card), it works via wi-fi to upload your photos to Instagram right from the camera! It has a touch screen and the girl could Skype from it if she wanted to! Sheesh!

She was beyond thrilled, and she had been complaining for months about the Disney camera that we gave her a couple of years ago. It takes about 2mp, little tiny pictures, and the camera deletes the photos randomly, so she never got to keep her pictures...that certainly won't be a problem any more! She's going to be a better photographer than her mom pretty soon (because yes, it does have manual programs...she can shoot in manual, aperture priority, or shutter priority when she's ready to learn them)! Not that it will be too hard, considering one of these pictures has a faucet that looks like it's about to dump water on my son's head...and the other one doesn't. Interesting, huh?

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Gwanghamun Square

Life around here has been crazy, as always! The kids are finally healthy--a week of sickness always feels like way too long! My cold is on the mend, I am confident. Kennedy was able to go back to school last Thursday and Friday, which was good because she had a lot of plans on Friday! I have spent the weekend trying to get through grading 5 page exams (with little success, so I must finish today!). We had 70 degree weather on Saturday with really poor air quality--we couldn't leave the house until around 3:00 in the afternoon, when it was (according to the air quality control website) a bit safter. We were quite shocked to find that it really did feel warm outside. But, it was back down to low 40s on Sunday--so depressing.

I was relieved to find that I had already written this post, so here you go...the last of my dad in Seoul.

After, we finished at the museum, Eric headed to school to get some work done, and dad and the kids and I headed to Gwanghamun Square. We stopped and picked up some street foods along the way.

Gwanghamun Square is on the way to the Cheonggyecheon, so we stopped there and showed Dad the all-important statue of King Sejong that I have already taken a million pictures of. We did head down into the museum to read all about King Sejong (or to warm up for a few minutes). After taking a few goofy pictures of my kids, we headed to the stream.

The stream was frozen in many places--something we had never seen before because we never head out there when it's this cold!

The kids were willing to have their pictures taken once again. They even posed for the Korean paparazzi that followed stood behind me while I took their picture.

The next day was Sunday, and Dad and I headed to Insadong while the rest of the family went to church. Insadong is a particularly tourist-y area. A street full of Korean pottery (celadon), tea shops, and Korean restaurants. It has just about any souvenir you could ever want from Korea.

My dad was on the look out for loose leaf tea, but he wasn't willing to spend thirty dollars on a small container of tea, especially when he didn't know whether or not he would like it. The two teas we tried, you can buy in jars in the grocery store; they are cheap but definitely not loose leaf!

On Monday, we left Dad and Cade at home to go to school. He kept Eric's phone so that he could navigate the subway and buses and call us if he got lost, but they didn't make it past the neighborhood grocery store. I guess he wasn't feeling too adventurous in the cold by this point in his Asian experience! We went out for Korean BBQ when we got home from school at our favorite neighborhood place, and Dad enjoyed the challenge of getting all of his banchan into a lettuce leaf and then in his mouth before it all falls out!

Tuesday I had the day off, though. We let Kennedy have the day off from school since it was Grandpa's last day in Korea, and we headed to the aquarium at the 63 Building. They advertise this one as "Sea World", but it is a very far cry from any Sea World that I've ever been to. Even on a Tuesday, it was packed. The shows were kind of lame, and it really wasn't very big.

It was fun, though. The kids enjoyed watching the seal show. Kennedy enjoyed watching the girls dance with the fish--the weirdest part, in my opinion. I hadn't ever been to the Coex Aquarium at this point, but now that I've been to both, I know that Coex is much better!

That night we had Korean fried chicken from Mom's Touch--our favorite. They've got good chicken (that actually has meat in it), great spicy sauce, and really good fries, too. We rarely eat there because you have to taxi to the place, but it definitely has the best chicken and fries!

The next day Dad was off to the airport. Eric and I both had to work, so he was on his own. To add to his excitement, our nanny misunderstood my text messages and showed up two hours later than I had asked. Then, Kennedy forgot her backpack (with her lunch in it, of course), and she begged us to have Grandpa bring it to school. So, he got to find his way to school on his way to the airport. We were so excited to have him here for that week to show him our lives in Seoul!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The rest of Gyeongbokgung

We are starting to ramp up for the end of the quarter. February went by quickly with all of our days off, and my students have been really busy with projects for my class, which means that I'm about to get really busy with grading. Really busy. I have three weeks to grade 150 articles, 75 exams, and 300 in-class essays. Yikes!

I told you a couple of weeks ago about the first part of our trip to Gyeongbokgung. This particular day with my dad was so long, and I took so many pictures, that it will end up being three different posts!

After our little cocoa break, we headed out to explore the rest of the grounds of the palace.

This was the first time that I had been to the palaces with snow on them (hopefully the last, to be honest!), so at least the pictures are a little different. The Folk Museum is in the background of the picture below.

Eric managed to get ahold of the camera for a little while, so there is evidence that I was there!

The grounds of this palace are HUGE!

It is quite a walk to the other parts.

We walked out to this pagoda

and the surrounding frozen pond.

The kids enjoyed throwing snow balls at the ice to see if they could crack it.

I'm pretty sure the ahjussis were not impressed.

Afterwards, we finally headed inside to the Folk Museum. It was warm in there!

We had been very grateful to be healthy since we got back from Thailand, but our streak has ended. Kennedy recovered from the fever and headache that she had Thursday and Friday. Cade picked it up on Saturday, though. He was up throwing up in the middle of the night. We sent Kennedy to school on Monday because she had been feeling better on Sunday, but Eric had to take her home early because she had another fever. She stayed home on Tuesday with a low-grade fever again. To top it off, Kennedy, Cade, and I all have pretty nasty colds, too. We can't wait for spring weather!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Celebrating Cade

Well, Cade's birthday turned out to be a bit anti-climactic. I was able to get home just a little earlier than normal, planning to get the kids ready to go out for dinner. (As much as I tried to deter him, he still wanted All American Diner...again.) But, when I arrived home, I found Kennedy sick on the couch with a fever of 101. It didn't look like she would be going anywhere.

So, we let Cade open his presents before dinner, so that Kennedy could watch him. She was ready for bed (or so I thought). He was one lucky boy. He got lots of Legos and cars, two of his favorite things right now! He also got some clothes (that we had brought back from family last summer--thanks!), and a basketball hoop that Dad had picked out for him.

Then, he and daddy went out to dinner to celebrate. It was the same restaurant that he wanted to go to last year, and then Eric had to go there, too. Ironically, I can't stand the place. I'm always trying to convince the rest of my family to choose a different restaurant, but they just keep going back...

On their way home, Cade got to pick out a cake at one of the local bakeries. Last year, he had a brownie at the restaurant, but this year he was adamant that he have his own cake. Who can blame the kid?! He had picked out a different one every time we'd been in a bakery for the past six months! He was very happy with his choice. And, Kennedy was able to stay awake until they got home, so she could have some, too. Happy birthday, Cade! (Thanks for being flexible and such a go-with-the-flow kind of kid!)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...