Clarifying the Financial Side of This

First, this is a close-up of my bracelet–Wordpress kept wanting me to put all my pictures into a slideshow when I just wanted to drop it onto the page.

Take THAT WordPress.  Heh.  😛

A bit blurry because I took it with my phone…and it’s an up-close shot, but you get the idea.
I was eyeing these bracelets (they’re pretty common in the little shops here) the other day but talked myself out of buying it.  Good thing 🙂  I love the colors, the daintiness of it (not a fan of chunky jewelery) and the little star on the end. Love it.  🙂
The two chains are attached at the ends and I suppose are supposed to look separate, but yeah..love it.  🙂

Onto my original plan for this post.
This should actually be a pretty quick one actually.  (Keyword: Should)
I knew that with coming to Korea that I’d be able to have money and to save and all that, but I guess for whatever reason, I had that money accumulating a lot faster in my head than how it works in reality.
I’ve been very good about sending half my check home each month ($1000), which is all great and dandy, but I don’t really have anything to show for it yet.  I’m basically fixing the mess I created for myself before I left.  I was pretty much down to nothing in my checking account (living check to check will do that to you) and my credit card…well, it’s seen better days.  It was at a zero balance before I decided to come to Korea, but got a little out of hand with the costs of coming here, laptop purchase (and external hard-drive), booking vacation trips once I got here..and well, life happened.
Now, I’m repairing what I did, but I don’t really see any other way I could have gone aside from the route I chose to take.  I know that with time I’ll actually be able to save, but I’m impatient by nature, and I like to see results.  And well, I guess I’m just human in that regard.
Anyway, if you plan on coming over, keep in mind that things won’t magically get better right off the bat.  However, I AM doing well over here, but money still gets tight at the end of the month, but that’s more from sending half my check back home (immediately.  no questions asked) and well, living over here.
I still have bills back home (student loans, storage unit and credit card)…and over here.
I guess I just wanted to write about the fact that yes, I get to keep a large portion of my check…but no, I’m still not rich yet.  haha.

I really think that once I get more settled here that I could stay for another year.  Obviously, it’s really early to say either way, and life might have something else to throw my way…but, this is a very real possibility.
Once I get this credit card knocked down, pretty much all of it would be able to rest safely in my account back home…which…is a pretty amazing feeling.

And…I’d want to go home to car payments, gas prices, rent, car maintenance….why?  haha.

Not to worry, it’s still really early to say, and I definitely do not see this as a long-term thing, but just as a tool to get myself back on my feet and ready for the next stage in my life.  In my opinion, it’s better to go into a relationship with some money under your belt. It opens a few more doors and creates more opportunities where there weren’t any before.  Plus, I’d rather be able to put more down on a house with someone than have to struggle to make rent in a tiny apartment because we both don’t have anything in savings and are trying to pay off student loans.  🙂

Baby steps.  I’m a planner/organizer/list-maker at heart, but making myself focus on one thing at a time really helps me keep a grip on my sanity.

(Note: after my checking account is a bit more stable back home, I won’t be sending home money each month, but rather making a running tally of how much I have “available” to use in my Korean account.  I lose a decent chunk of money due to fees and such, and I’d like to be able to just send it over in bigger chunks to minimize the loss…  Again, getting there…in the next few months, I’ll be where I want to be.)

//Want to read my about my journey from the beginning?  Go here.

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Happy Teacher’s Day!!

Today was Teacher’s Day in Korea (pretty much the same as Teacher Appreciation Day/Week back home).  I got to school and saw that some of my kindergarteners had brought in gifts with them for myself and some of the other kindergarten teachers.  Two of us (including me) got most of the haul because we have them more often and one of the other teachers just got here like a week ago so she hasn’t had a chance to make much of an impression yet.
It’s also completely optional for the kids to bring stuff (otherwise I would have had over 100 presents, lol).  I wasn’t really expecting much..maybe a card here or there or maybe flowers or something.  Or nothing, ha.  I know back home, most kids usually give lotion or a card or something.  Or the stereotypical apple.  haha.

This is what I received this year:

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I.KNOW.
WOW!!!!
I was completely blown away.
Most of it is from the kindergarten parents because we have their kids for the longest.  (hours at a time compared to a 35 minute class here and there throughout the week).
Again, this doesn’t happen with every student either.  Our school is also located in a wealthier area (and is a private school) so our presents would be different from other schools.

The details:
*Chanel foaming facewash–first time with Chanel…anything.
*TWO flower arrangements. (which, as a single lady, getting flowers is a very rare thing)
*Handmade paper flowers (origami-style)
*bracelet (was actually eyeing these the other day and talked myself out of it) 🙂
*30,000Won giftcard (just under $30) to Galleria Timeworld
*Burt’s Bees Boxed Set (even just one lip gloss from them is normally over $10).
*2 handwritten (in their best English) letters from two parents.
***Not pictured (because I completely forgot! ah!) –two free movie ticket vouchers!!  I got those yesterday and completely forgot to put them in the pic.  oops!

The whole day was a “I’m smiling so much that my face hurts” kind of thing.
Well, not the whole day, heh.  But, it was a fun day.
Also, a mom of one of my girls bought the teachers pizza for lunch.  DELICIOUS.
We also had a party during their normal snacktime (cake included).
Tuesday is also Art day for the kindergarteners (elementary school went on as usual) and myself and another teacher (we normally teach the art classes) had them make handmade cards for the two girls that work at the front desk (and work their butts off)…that would likely not receive anything because they aren’t technically teachers.
At the end of the day, we ended classes early (kindergarten) and had them all come into the library so they could each hand-deliver their cards to the girls that work at the front desk.

😀  Very fun day.
In case I haven’t mentioned it, I have kindergarten from 9:45-2:25 (with lunch from 12:25-1:45) then elementary from 2:50 to 6:45.
A really long day, and isn’t standard across all hagwons, but yeah…it’s what I do.  And hey, it gets me flowers and Chanel.  haha 🙂

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//
Currently listening to:
Gotye–Somebody That I Used to Know
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NhkK-1epUA
(love when it picks up at 1:33, but addicted to this song)

Taylor Swift–Eyes Open (Hunger Games Soundtrack)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vShCqrZiK_0

Drake feat. Rihanna–Take Care
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-zzP29emgpg&feature=related

Rihanna–Where Have You Been
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBxt_v0WF6Y&feature=related

Annnnnnnd…I’m so in love with this commercial, haha.  🙂 🙂
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=instream&v=35KX4OHQfMc
It’s one that I actually stick around to watch when it comes up on Youtube 🙂 haha.