Done and done.

So, I went to immigration today and got myself sorted for the next year in Korea.  I’m thinking this will be my last year teaching in Korea.  I love teaching, but I’d like to further my education and I hope to teach in a more stable setting.

The after-school academies (or hagwons) tend to be a bit more unstable as they can be opened up with anyone with enough money (really) and they’re everywhere.  I really enjoy my classes and the school that I’m at so I’m hoping for another year like this one.  This past year seemed to breeze by pretty quickly.  There’s a bit of negativity though, and that can be a bit rough, but trying to keep my head down and do my own best with my classes and sort of just do what I’m doing.

I already have quite a few things in store for the coming year, so hopefully things go smoothly.

Here’s a teaser for the year to come–obviously things change and put this is what I’m looking at as of now:
*Hoping I get the OK to carve pumpkins with my kiddos at school.  Our classes are smaller and I’d LOVE to give them this experience.  Halloween isn’t really that big here yet (slowly…) so I’d like to let them experience making a jack-o-lantern.
I’m thinking that letting them draw and scoop out the mess would be best and I’ll do the cutting.
(Plus decorating my room a bit for Halloween!  Yay!  I love having my own classroom!)

* Christmas at home (first time in almost 3 years!! Squeeeee!)

*New Years in LA (first time!)

*back with ultimate frisbee in the spring 🙂  (Too many things going on in the fall right now to dedicate the time and money to it)

*Toying with the idea of Budapest in February (Yes, winter)

*Working on another surprise of sorts for my summer vacation— I sent my mom and brother on an all-expenses paid cruise two years ago (to the Bahamas, I believe).  Expensive, yes, but it makes me happy and I think that’s what life is about.  This won’t be quite that extravagant, but it still puts an extra spring in my step and makes my heart feel lighter when I think about it. My mom is a single mom and she works her butt off (and has) for years and years and never gets a vacation, so I had wanted to change that.

*Finish contract in September

*Thailand for a bit of muay thai fighting training

Anyway, this would be the dream scenario, but I like making my dreams happen.  So, we shall see 😀

Why, Hello there!

I’ve gotten really bad about updating this.  Whoops!  Sorry!

First, here are some of my favorite songs currently so you can jam and read at the same time.  😀

Jessie J’s ‘Sexy Lady’
and
Plumb’s ‘In My Arms’
a
nd
Jessie J’s ‘Wild’
a
nd
Gabrielle Aplin’s ‘Salvation’

Ok.  Good.  😀

Anyway, let’s see…Thailand was frikin amazing and I definitely need to go back.  I had an issue with pickpocketing on one of the overnight buses which left me doing a lot of sitting, movie watching and reading at the end of my trip…but thankfully, I was able to experience a lot of stuff at the beginning.
I went to a Muay Thai class and had a 3-hour class..which was awesome.  If I had more lifetimes, I could see myself going back there for a bit longer and doing a bit more with that.  There were Thai people there obviously, and then other foreigners who went to Thailand specifically to train Muay Thai.  The gym was called Santai Muay Thai in case you’re curious or interested for yourself.  Super friendly staff and good overall environment.

I also rode on and bathed an elephant in a river.  Oh, and rode bareback, not in one of those harness things.  😀  I was excited for the elephant, but it ended up even better than I expected.  My elephant was really gentle and sweet.  🙂
On that same tour, I also went to Tiger Temple and got to pet some of the tigers there 😀
Tigers are my absolute favorite animal so that was HUGE for me.  That whole day was a blur of awesomeness…thank God for cameras.  I was able to get a lot of pictures to help me remember everything.

Also, I went to a few night markets and got to bargain/haggle and went to a floating market (same tour as elephants and tigers), saw a lot of temples (mostly all in Bangkok).  I also got in some lovely beach time and relaxation over on Koh Tao island.  😀

Bringing things back to Korea, I’m about a month and a half into my new job at the new school and it’s loads better than the previous school.  The administration are honest with me about my performance and we have weekly meetings.  We have TWO office printers (instead of the two personal-sized printers at my last place)–makes it a bit congested in the office with 8 teachers and two tiny printers.  Each teacher also has a heater in their classroom…ah!  And I have my OWN classroom!  😀 😀  It’s so lovely, and I’m free to decorate it as I wish. Our library is nicely stocked and the curriculum seems effective.  There’s also a system put in place if we need to discipline students.  The work load is heavier, but I don’t mind it because of all the other positives.  Plus, I also don’t mind working more if I see the results of my efforts…which I do, since I have my own students and it feels like a real school.

Also, as is customary in Korea for ESL teachers, with a new job comes a new apartment.  Each school provides an apartment (or housing allowance) for their foreign teachers, so if you change schools, then you change apartments…not sure if I’ve mentioned that or not.
Anyway, I’m loving my new place.  I’m slowly getting back on my feet after not having a paycheck for awhile. We get paid monthly here, which is a bit annoying, but the pay is good enough that normally it doesn’t matter.  It’s just that when you stop working and start back up again…it’ll be awhile before you see any money.  I got paid this past month, but my check for December will bring me back to feeling comfortable again.  VERY anxious for that.  A huge thanks to my momma who has helped me get through this rough patch.

I feel like I should have pictures along with this post, but they’ll have to wait til the next one.  It’s late again here and I’m ready for bed.

Happy Friday! 😀