Friday, December 31, 2010


I am truly stunned that the last day of 2010 has arrived and what a wonderful year this has been!!!!
There have been many highlights......

living in asia for a year. discovering my passion for teaching. making awesome new friends. growing closer to God. skype dates with chris. tea ceremonies. cherry blossoms. my awesome two cousins coming to visit me in korea and a very, very awesome weekend in seoul which included lots of paris baguette coffee and pastries. a very pink birthday. falling in love with my kiddos at school. my first thanksgiving. my first halloween. china. wearing a hambok. learning how to cook korean food. wednesday's tea for three. breakfast in bed with bongi every saturday. volunteering at the local library. seeing rodin's work in real life. climbing the steps of the great wall. the 2010 soccer world cup which was hosted in south africa but proudly celebrated in korea. letters in the mail. thrift shopping in nampadong with jill. putting foot on north korean soil. temple stay. throwing a snowball for the very first time. baskin robins. being able to view monet, cezanne, and picasso's work live. pancake day with the kiddos. discovering busan. daily e-mails from my mommy. lots and lots of class parties. too much shopping. blogging

                                                    name but a few!

But now it's time to kiss 2010 bye-bye and as we are about to embrace 2011, I would like to:

Read the Bible from front to back.
I always wanted to do this but didn't really know how (I know, it's a lame excuse but true) so when I recently discovered a "reading plan" printed in the back of my Bible, I decided that reading the complete Bible is something I'm going to do this coming year!!!

Do a photography course
If I have one regret about this year in Korea, it is that I didn't do a photography course before I got on that airplane . I love taking photographs and there is so much beauty in this world which I would love to capture, but my photos never do any justice to the prettiness of reality. This coming year, I would like to change that.

Read (at the very least) 10 books from my "Must Read" list
I am an avid reader and rarely a day goes by without me reading something. The problem is that whenever I am in  a library or bookshop, I get totally overwhelmed and don't know what books to get. I found a solution to this problem by keeping a little journal in my purse and whenever a friend would suggest a book or I hear of a book that tickle my fancy, I would  jot it  down. Lately, however, the reading list  itself is becoming a bit "overwhelming" so I hope to cross (at the very least) 10 books of it.

Stop worrying so much.
I am a terrible worry wart, always worrying about "what if" and 5 years from now. I am going to stop that and just enjoy this coming year.....and most importantly trust God and the promise He made me:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him and he will make your path straight - Prov.3:5 -6

Travel some more
I got bitten by mr. travel bug and it's real bad next year I would like to see at least one or two  or three of these countries (I plan to see all of them in this life time;-)

Vietnam, Bali, Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong India, Greece, France, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, England, Belgium, Czech Republic, Italy, Norway,  Egypt, Israel , South America and some of my favorite African countries (Mozambique, Namibia, Morocco, Zanzibar)

All my bets are on Vietnam and Hong I already booked my plane ticket for this coming January -YAY!!!!

Finish my Interior Decorating Diploma
After graduating, I worked in the Interior decorating industry for almost two years before I decided to switch to teaching. I still love decor though and I doubt if that would ever change. Before being a teacher, I also did a course on Interior Decorating and Design ......but never completed it. One of my aims for 2011 is to complete those last 4 modules and bag that little piece of precious paper. Why? Because I don't like to start something and not finish it!

Learn something new about a subject I've never shown interest in before.
It's no secret that Chris and I are complete opposites. It's true, opposites attract but sometimes I worry (again with the worry) that we might end up not having anything in common. After some chatting about our  resolutions for 2011, we decided that it might be a good idea for us to learn something new from each other's field of interest. This is why Chris will acompany me to several art galleries and movie dates at the
Labia whilst I will learn how a car's insides work (Mister is a mechanical engineer :-).....eeeeek. We also thought it would be fun to do a wine course together and I seriously need to learn how to couple-dance!!!!!!

But before all this "hard work" starts, I am off to celebrate the arrival of the new year!

I wish you all a happy, happy 2011 my dearest blogger friends!!
I would also like to thank you for reading my little input in cyberspace and words can't describe the joy and warmth your comments give me! See you next year :-)

Thursday, December 30, 2010

As promised..... latest thrift finds.

 Now just so that you know, I am by no means what you would call a fashionista - in fact, when I was younger my mom often use to scold me about my odd taste in clothing! But I really can't help it!!! I believe in love at first sight, especially when it comes to clothes and when I fall in love with an item, I don't care if it goes with the shoes I have or that I have anything to wear with it, for that matter...I am terrible that way! But I love my clothes, every single piece of it and they become like friends to me - little partners I like to hang out with :-). What I don't like is paying an arm and a leg for these "friends"!!!! So thrift stores and vintage suits me perfect. I love nothing more that finding a forgotten beauty and although vintage stores always make me sneeze (I am terribly allergic to dust),  this is where I find most of my clothing!

Now, I kind of promised myself that I wouldn't do outfit posts. I love other people's outfit posts, don't get me wrong, but as for myself, I am way to self-concious to "model" my daily outfits .....I'm kinda funny like that. I don't mind showing my  latest thrifted beauties though, but for now you will have to imagine what it would look like  on  a real person instead of a hanger! Here we go...

 This is what I call my "Minni Mouse" dress. It's a vintage woolen dress with a velvet ribbon just below the beige "belt".

A charcoal wool dress ....

....but what I love most about this dress is the buttons at the back. A clever idea by a clever, crafty friend after I complained about this dress being so awfully plain!

I love "tartans" and for ages I've dreamt about owning a pretty tartan coat. When I saw this one for $8. 00, I jumped for joy!!!!

Do you ever buy stuff at thrift stores, dearest Blogger friends?
Have you bought anything interesting recently?
Care to share?

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Hope you had a merry little Christmas.....

I know that I am terribly late but the past couple of days I was so busy....

...Christmas light gazing.....

...eating curry for Chrismas lunch...
(You know that globalization is a reality when you have Indian curry with your South-African friend in Korea for Christmas)

...Skype dates with loved ones.....
(and shedding a few tears because Chrismas without family is just not the same)

....Thrift store shopping....
(I promise to share my finds with you soon)

....catching up on some reading...

...and drinking lots and lots of hot chocolate!

Hope that your Chrismas was wonderful and that you had a blessed day!!!!

(images by

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A is for Apron

I'm not always to sure if I like being a domestic goddess (well, Im trying very hard to be one) but I sure like the look of it . Vintage porcelain, mixing bowls, measuring cups and ......

....of course....

..the pretty, pretty vintage aprons!!!

Aren't these aprons by sugar and spice aprons too adorable for words?
I'm just not to sure who would be more ravishing (or ravished) - the food or the cook, wearing one of these :-)

If you  like aprons too and would like to win one of these pretties, pop over to this pretty
blog and enter.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Monday Inspiration: Sense and Sensibility

I must admit that I take badly to Mondays! I don't know to many people who would choose Mondays as their favorite day of the week either! Thankfully, we do have weekends to inspire us for the week to come. This weekend I got my inspiration from the beautiful  movie "Sense and Sensibility".

A while back I promised myself that I would read all Jane Austin's novels ......I haven't kept that promise (yet) but to my defence I have watched almost all the movies and I LOVE IT!!!!! "Sense and Sensibility" is definitely my favorite by far and I absolutely adore it for the.......

....hues of pink.....

...the breathtakingly beautiful dresses......

...vintage  decor.....

....sisterly love.....


...awesome storyline.....

Oh, and being quite a bit wedding obsessed, I could'nt help but share this beautiful Sense and Sensibility inspired wedding with you!

I also stumbled across this really fun quiz. Want to find out which Jane Austin heroine you are?
Just click on the image below

I am Marianne Dashwood!
It seems like Marianne Dashwood and I have a lot in common. I must admit that this quiz is not to far off.
Oh, and ofcourse Chris is my Captain Brandon - just much better looking and younger! YAY!!!

Which heroine you are?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Wonderland Engagement

Don't you just love this "Alice in Wonderland" inspired engagement session by the very talented  people at Three Nails Photography?

I sure do!!!

It makes me want to wipe the dust of my copy and read "Alice and Wonderland" ...again!


Hope you have a lovely Sunday!!!!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Breakfast for dinner

Bongi, (my awesome flatmate and  friend) and I  have a standing date to eat breakfast together every Saturday. Unfortunately life happens which means that sometimes breakfast don't happen in the morning...... we just have breakfast for dinner!!!

(The added bonus of this "time difference" is that it's totally okay to have fresh buttery mussels for a starter and ice cream for desert)

Friday, December 17, 2010

Teatime Fairy Tale

Once upon a time there was a girl who grew up in a tea-obsessed home and (fairy) grandmother to blamed for it all! So when she packed her bags for Asia, one of the things on her to-do list was to attend a real Asian tea ceremony so that she could go back and make her (fairy) grandmother the perfect cup of tea...

...with dainty little Asian  tea cakes...

 Like fate wanted it, the opportunity arose and she had her tea ceremony BUT the Tea Wizard took a great liking in her and offered to teach her how to do tea ceremonies - of course she said yes!!! Every Friday she, and her sidekick David, would go to the Tea Wizard's tea shop in the back alleys of downtown Busan and in his attic the girl learned how to make tea just like a real Korean princess (except for the blue knees because unlike a Korean princess she wasn't used to sitting on her knees for a full two hours straight) until one day......

Well, what happened was that the Tea Obsessed Girl walked into the tea shop just like any other Friday BUT this Friday was different !! The Tea Wizard gave her a big, toothy grin when he told her about the Annual National Tea Ceremony Festival that was coming up in two weeks time. The wizard smiled even broader when he told the Tea Obsessed Girl that he bought her a beautiful Korean Ballgown (called a Hambok) specially for the occasion. The girl was flattered and kind of taken aback because she knew that a Hambok was made of real silk and very, very expensive. The Tea Obsessed Girl was also a little sad because she knew that she couldn't attend it due to the fact that it fell on a school day and she had to teach her little Korean (monkey) fairies. The Korean Wizard was very wise though and persistant so he swung his magic tongue and told David something in Korean and then it all made sense......the Tea Obsessed Girl would be able to go to the ceremony and wear her beautiful gown because she would actually participate in the ceremony and in front of hundreds of people, she would serve tea just like a Korean princess.

Wait!!!!! What??????

Well, this time the Tea Wizard waited for the girl to smile and smile she did ....a big, uncomfortable, shocked smile.....because she didn't know what to do otherwise. The Tea Obsessed Girl could hardly say no to this (nerve wrecking) experience, especially after the Tea Wizard bought her a silk Hambok ..but she was most certainly not a "natural" when it came to serving tea like a Korean princess - and the fact she was clumsy with hands much bigger than a real Korean princess's didn't make matters easier. What could she do? Saying "no" was a no-no!!! So she reluctantly agreed and immediately got whisked away by the wizard's wife to try on her new dress....

....and learn how to walk, talk and "bow" like a tea princess!

For two weeks the Tea Obsessed Girl practices her tea serving skills like crazy until she could do it perfectly (okay, maybe not perfectly but almost) and then the BIG DAY finally arrived.

Upon her arrival at the magical (Commodore Hotel) palace, she was once again whisked away to get all prettified and dressed up in her beautiful gown, complete with beautiful non-glass slippers.

Of course, like with every toad that becomes a princess, everybody oohed and aaahed at the Tea Obsessed Girl in her new dress and perhaps the fact that it was the first time that these Koreans ever saw a non-Korean in a Hambok had something to do with it. None the less, she felt like a princess and even more so when she was escorted to the dining hall to be wined and dined alongside the wizard and his wife, a Buddhist monk who would also be her photographer and the other guests of honour (who curiously sneaked a peak at her plate so see just what a non-Korean-toad-turned-princess ate for lunch) (She overindulged in smoked samon and capers if you wondered).

After lunch it was time to prove her  tealike princess-ness so with a few of the other ladies (who could have been her grandmother because apparently DADO isn't very popular among Korean youth) she did her tea ceremony. The Tea Obsessed Girl was very anxious, especially because they placed her right in the middle of the stage for everyone to view and all the spectators was so very curious to see if a Non-Korean-Toad-Turned-Princess could serve tea. But she did okay....well, for most part of it ....and didn't even choke when the audience giggled as she began to drink her tea (don't ask why, I don't know either). Anyway, afterwards she got a loud applaud and mumbles of praise in Korean (which she couldnt understand but appreciated it all the same)

BUT then the real magic happened!!!!!

Everybody having way more green tea than should be allowed, was ready to party! A bit naive, the Tea Obsessed Girl didn't know this so you can just imagine her surprise when all the tea trays got removed from stage to make way for a ........ROCK BAND!!!

From the first note of "Unchain my heart" all tradition and prim-and-proper tea manners were forgotten and the old folks in their hamboks started dancing like there was no tomorrow..... and soon the Tea Obsessed Girl was pushed into this marsh pit of rocking Ajimas!!!! So they danced and danced and rocked to the music!!! But this was not the end of it all. When the rock band got a bit breathless from the crazy amount of singing, the Karaoke began and to the Tea Obsessed Girl's utter surprise the Buddhist Monk took of his modest Buddhist jacket (to reveal a Lacoste Cardigan - in Korea everybody is fashionable, even the monks it seems) and descended the stage to sing the soppiest Korean love song imaginable.

To add to this, the Korean Tea Ladies went completely crazy for him and screamed for an ancore!!!! The Tea Obsessed Girl did find this a bit strange seeing that Buddhist monks are supposed to be above worldly matters and she didn't know that love songs was allowed in monasteries, being chase and all......but she had to admit, he was a pretty good love-song-singer (and photographer).

Much to soon, to the Tea Obsessed Girl's sadness, the clock struck four and it was time for the magic to end ...and for the Hambok-wearing-Toad- turned-Princess to turn in a Foreign Toad again. But as she was saying goodbye, the Tea Obsessed Gil was given a beautiful porcelain jar filled with magical Green Tea  by an Adjima Queen so that the girl could have Green Tea magic whenever she felt like it again.

Then a pumpkin colored taxi came to pick her up and take her back to her tiny little apartment.

On the way though, she saw a fox riding a scooter (okay, maybe not a real fox but a guy who wore a beanie that looked like a fox) who, as he passed her, winked......and the Tea Obsessed Toad-turned-Princess knew for sure that Fairy tales definitely do come true!


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Warm hands and heart - Thank you Amy!!!

Remember the fun "Cold Hands, Warm Hearts" swap in which I got assigned with the adorable

Well, my package arrived in the mail  today and I got spoiled with awesome gloves, a handknitted scarf and some beautiful matching earrings! This warm, fuzzy gifts could'nt be more timely because it's f-f-f-freezing here in Korea........ all cuddled up in my new goodies, I can't even feel the cold though! Thanks sooo much Amy, I love my gifts and a BIG thank you to Sandy  and Illene
 who came up with this brilliant idea! This was sooooo much fun!

If you would like to see what I got Amy, go here

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Happy Mon...uhm...Tuesday.....and things I am thankful for after this weekend!

Wow, I can't believe that it's less that two weeks before Christmas!!!! Oh, and six weeks before I go back home. Wow. Time is flying way to fast and I haven't even started my Christmas shopping!!! Eeeeeek!! Time, please stop!!!!!!

After this weekend, I just realised again how much I have to be thankful for. Most importantly, I am so thankful for God's protective hand over the people I love!!!!Chris got into an car accident on Sunday but thankfully he didn't get hurt at all. My dearest Chris was on his way back from my mother's after having Sunday lunch with the family when he stopped for an accident that just happened in front of him. Unfortunately everything happened so fast and the driver behind him didn't realise soon enough what was going on so he crashed into the back of Chris's car. Luckily, good boy that he is, Chris wore his seatbelt and doesnt have a scratch on him. It's a different story for his poor little car though! But Im sure that after a visit to the car doctors, Chris's little green monster will be as good as new!!

As for other reasons to rejoice:
* The discovery of Green Tea Yogurt. Why haven' I noticed it before? Perhaps the fact that I can't read the labels of most Korean products have something to do with it but oh man, Green Tea yogurt is so yummy!
* A 94% at Tea Ceremony class! Okay, I know I run the risk of sounding completely tea-obsessed but ...well....I do love tea! So when the opportunity arised, I decided to do some tea ceremony classes and it turned out to be so much fun. I am actually doing a blog about it later this week in which I will tell you all about DADO, the Korean style Tea Ceremony so stay tuned if you would like to know more!
* A lovely scarf, mittens and pretty earrings that arrived in the mail today as part of the "Cold hands, warm hearts" swap - THANK YOU Amy! Blog to follow soon, I promise!
* My amazing boyfriend who is such a pro when it comes to handling my PMS induced tear fest!
* This past Sunday I went to the most amazing church service. I haven't been in church for a while, mostly because the English church here in Busan is two hours away from where I live. Sunday I got invited to this lovely little Korean church closebye which also does an English sermon and it was so awesome to be back. I wish I knew about this cute little church sooner!!!!
* Oh, and the day just got better when my friend Bongi and I indulged in some Haagen Dazz Caramel Cookie crunch ice cream afterwards. All in all, a heavenly day!!!
Hope you had a lovely weekend and HAPPY TUESDAY!

( image found on - it really does'nt have anything to do with this post except for the ice cream and the fact that I love her shoes)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Tank and Tink

Oh my, I absolutely adore these prints by Tank and Tink !Not only are they so beautiful to look at, but so very, very comforting too! I would love to have such a beautiful visual reminder of God's love for me so these are definitely on my Christmas wishlist - especially this last one. Sometimes I get really fearful when I think about the future and then I get all stressed up and worried! I have this bad habit of spending way to much time in the "what if" world, obsessing about possible worst-case scenarios but promises like Isaiah 24 and Proverbs 16: 5 just bring me back to reality - and what a wonderful reality it is to know that God will always be on the look-out for me!!!

To have these promises prettified so that its not only a Godly comfort but also pretty to look at, well, that gives me just more reason to spoil myself this Christmas!!!
( prints by Tank and Tink on