Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Living a parallel life?

Somehow while going from website to website, I found this list. It's a list of 100 things you learn while backpacking. At first I thought I might write my own; but the more I read, the more I realized how many similar experiences this author and I share. Also I love her wording and the way she writes! But seriously when I was reading this, I felt like she must have been traveling with me (besides when she talks about Europe haha). Enjoy :)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Welcome (back to) the jungle!

Here I am, back in the jungle! After going home for about 6 weeks, I am here again in Thailand and loving it. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a little nervous about returning after being home and seeing all of my friends and family. Turns out, six weeks at home was exactly what I needed to recharge my batteries.

Once I landed in Phuket I was so excited to see the kids, I could barely stand myself. Unfortunately I didn’t get back to Yaowawit until after 11pm, so I had to wait until the following day. The next day seeing all of the kids, meeting the new volunteers, and seeing the staff was the Thai staff was the best! It felt almost as if I never had left but everything was exciting and new again. Also the Yaowawit volunteers welcomed a new volunteer who is a friend of mine from home, Riley! Having someone from home here in Thailand can make a world of difference. I am so excited that she decided to take the plunge and join me in Kapong.

Su brushing her teeth after lunch
So far teaching has picked up right where it left off. I think the month of October was just what everyone needed. The students and staff are all in high spirits and ready to take on second semester. This semester along with the other volunteers, I am taking a thai class from one of our teachers K. Tak. Of course we aren’t expecting to come out of it fluent, or anywhere close; but maybe after this term I will know more than how to order food!

Rainy season is FINALLY coming to a close. It was a longgggggg few months, and I am very much looking forward to some sunshine and a good tan. Right now it is kind of in-between seasons, so in the transition we are getting a little rain every evening along with crazy thunder and lightening. Luckily we haven’t had any power outages yet! We were able to fit in some beach time a few weekends ago, and we will be in Phuket this weekend…And FINALLY will be seeing catching fire!

I hope all is well at home and everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving! Do me a favor and don’t post toooo many pictures of your delicious turkey dinner. I’m not kidding at lunch we shredded chicken and I pretended it was turkey; I even convinced myself it smelled exactly like it.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Home Sweet Home!

After about 9 ½ months in Thailand and being away from home, I came back to the US for some much needed friends and family time. Before going home, I feel like I was counting down the days and the time was creeping along so slowly. Somehow I was home for 6 weeks and it FLEW by! Although I was very busy in my time I had at home, I would say I spent a fair amount of time curled up in bed with my boyfriend…Netflix. I don’t know if I have ever been so appreciative for things like my bed, shower, guacamole and turkey sandwiches before; but let me tell you I will never take them for granted again! Anyways here is glimpse at what I was up to while in Seattle…

Part of my very patient welcoming team!  Due to a mix-up with bags, it took about 2 hours for me to get to my family.

I was home just in time for one of the final M's games of the season. Thank you Chrissy for getting the group together and Jenna and Brii for surprising me in Seattle!

BEEzys take Seattle!

Linfield Homecoming 2013

Alzheimers walk for Papa with Georgie

Seahawks game, Thank you Chrissy and Steven!

Dani and I went to Spooner Farms pumpkin patch this year. It was such a cool place, tons of pumpkins, pumpkin slingshots, food, corn mazes, etc. After all of our hard work, we decided a very festive hard cider was deserved. Also I learned that if you let pumpkins roll around your trunk for a few days, eventually the stems will break off...

My mom, dad, grandma carved pumpkins together this year. Grandma and my mom successfully made these cool pinterest inspired drilled pumpkins. Everyone ended the night with awesome pumpkins and (barely haha) all of their fingers.
Celebrating Jennifer's 24th birthday, so nice to see these ladies! Where were you Mal?
Finally got to see Bridge! What did we do? Oh just get Chipotle, shop, and end the night taking home a dozen Krispy Kreme...each

They see me trolllllllin. Halloween with Chrissy Baum!

I am so sad I did not get a complete picture of the full meal deal. Here is my grandma making tending to the turkey for our "Thanksgiving Dinner". Since I am going to be in Thailand on actual Thanksgiving, we celebrated in October this year... Don't I have the best family ever?! Thank you grandma, LOVE YOU :)

So happy I got to witness the first of many Smith "wrestling match" between Georgie and Levi haha. I just love them.

Dad and Levi our little Thai :)

As I look through all of these pictures again, I am once again reminded how lucky I am! No wonder I love to home, look at all these people I get to see when I do. It also make me realize how many of the things that happened that aren't pictured, so here it goes.

1. So mid-way home on a layover in Dubai, I was texting my sister. She was talking about being at school, and I am so happy she is loving it so much... but of course I was a little sad I wouldn't be seeing her upon arrival in Seattle. Apparently after we finished texting, she called my mom.. hopped on a plane, and beat me to Seatac. SURPRISE there she was at the airport, sister of the year award! I can't believe we don't have a picture together!

2. I got to see two of my favorite little babes Kyson and Aniya, who have both grown up so much since I last saw them! I can't believe they are both 1, and cruising around on their own.

3. We celebrated my friend Michelle's birthday by going out to dinner! I also got to see Michelle and Molly's new house, and catch up. AND MICHELLE IS COMING TO THAILAND IN JANUARY!

4. I went and saw Captain Phillips with my parents and it was such a good movie. Talk about being on the edge of your seat for 2 hours.

5. Sweet little cousin Levi is... WALKING! I could not be happier that I was home for him to start walking. Let me tell you he is on the move and he is fast. Also he was the cutest little elephant for Halloween and Georgie was a perfect Snow White!

I am sure I have left out about 4,000 things, but long story not so short I had an amazing 6 weeks at home! A huge thank you to everyone for making it so great, seeeeee again soon(ish) USA!