Friday, December 26, 2008

The Next: New Kids on the Block

So...I was never a real big fan of the band: New Kids on the Block, but I was shockingly amused the other day when I was flipping through the channels on the tube and saw this music video. These are the prettiest Asian boys that I have ever seen, they are so pretty that they look like girls. I needed a good laugh and this video definitely sufficed! Skip past the first 30 seconds to see these pretty boys.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Life or Something Like It...

The past two weeks have been filled with great joy, relief, healing, and deep pain. 

Grant had his surgery and everything went swimmingly well. Grant's Korean doctor described the surgery as "excellent." In addition, the surgery cost almost half of what we were originally told that it would cost. What an answered prayer! I had been praying about that the previous week. Grant's tingling in his leg and back pain have completely diminished and gone away. He just has a little vertigo when he gets up to walk around but that is also starting to decrease as well. Thank you so very much for all of your prayers.  Here is a picture of Grant looking up the results of the world of college football. As you can see, he is already feeling much better.
 On a most somber and grave note, just the other day, my family was shocked to lose one of our dear family members: my cousin Kevin. He was one of the most individualistic and unique people I
 have ever known. He was creative, funny, very intelligent, amazingly wonderful with kids, and an exceptional writer.  He will be greatly missed!
Please be praying for my family and his immediate family as we try to sort
through everything during this tumultuous time. 

Life is so precious and often times unexpectedly short. We don't know when our day is to go home. May we live each day as if it were our last... Blessings to you all. 

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Small Things

The longer I live my life, the more often I notice how much the small things, that seem so trivial sometimes, hurt us or bless us the most. For example, the other day while I was running an older Korean man told me good morning. It just about made my day considering the fact that a lot of Koreans, outside of our school, seem fearful to speak to us. Also, while in class the other day, Sally, one of our kindergarteners, answered one of the questions correctly so I was going to give her a sticker, instead of walking up to me to receive her sticker she gleefully smiled and jubilantly skipped to where I was. Or while I was running, I felt the purest joy just from watching snowflakes flutter down and get stuck in my eyelashes (I'm pretty sure people were laughing at me on this day because it was frigidly cold, snowing and I was smiling like I had never seen snow before). In addition, a small piece of Grant's disc has been extruding into his sciatic nerve. It's a small part of the body that can cause a terrible amount of pain if everything is not in place. Moreover, the preciousness of getting to hold Grant's hand and how it reminds me of how dumb some of our arguments and disagreements are, especially since they are usually about small things that don't even matter. Also, this past month Grant and I received a package from his parents full of goodies that we don't get the privilege of having while over here. It included a very sweet note, pancake mix, syrup(which is suprisingly hard to find over here), nutella(which I pretty much died out of pure exhilaration when I saw it), oatmeal, and many other things. We felt like it was Christmas when we opened the box. Sorry, one more thing that has just melted my heart this month is getting to see my almost one-year old niece blow kisses to me through Skype. These small things don't seem like much to others, but they mean the world to me. The small things make the big difference, just like the small things we do to help others can effect other's lives in monumental ways.

Speaking of Grant, he is having surgery on his back on 12/09/08, around 12 am your time. The doctors are going to be using a laser to eliminate the part of the disc that is basically pinching his sciatic nerve and causing him great pain. Please be praying for guidance and wisdom as the doctors perform this surgery. It is a non-invasive surgery that requires only 5 days of recovery as opposed to open back surgery which had been suggested to us at the onset of Grant's back pain. The last few weeks have been a whirlwind considering the fact that we have been to at least 5 different hospitals and conversed with 6 or more doctors about Grant's predicament. Through much prayer, many advisers, and much thought we decided to go with the laser surgery. Plus, the cost to do the surgery over here is a third of how much it would cost to have it done in the US. God is in control, and we have faith that this is the right choice to make.

We have thoroughly enjoyed our teaching and the kids even more than before. I feel as if we finally got in the right groove of things at our jobs. Our students feel much more comfortable and open to us, and we are continually striving to find new, creative ways to teach them.

Our November was a busy one filled with going to Cheonon once and Seoul twice. We met up with a
married couple that Grant had met at A&M, in Seoul. It was my first time to meet them. They are both from Texas and are teaching in South Korea. It was such a wonderful delight and a very refreshing experience to get to talk to fellow Texans of like-mindedness. We also discovered that I went to high school with their brother-in-law. It is truly a small world. Too bad they are both leaving in February.

Our Thanksgiving was delightful. We had a Thanksgiving dinner with our fellow American teachers from Florida. We had chicken(since Turkey is around $80 here) sweet potatoes(I'm typically not a big fan of sweet potatoes, but their sweet potatoes here are downright amazing), mashed potatoes, broccoli and cheese casserole(which I made), butter rolls, and some cranberry dressing. It was definitely not the same as home, but it was as close as we could get. We really missed everyone. When I got home the night of Thanksgiving, I tried to call some friends and family, but too much sadness, I could not reach anyone. I definitely shed some tears at not being able to reach anybody.

The colors of fall were quite vivid and gorgeous here! No wonder they consider fall to be one of their most beautiful seasons! Winter, on the other hand, has been quite an experience for a Texas girl like me. I've never been so cold in my life. Grant was so sweet that he bought me the best jacket I could have ever asked for. It is a very warm, bright green North Face jacket. He does a good job of taking care of me.

We love y'all so very much!