Thursday, May 31, 2012

Memories from the School Year

Not to be redundant, but SERIOUSLY. How is it possible that this school year is over? Here are a few sweet memories from throughout the school year.

I miss these students already! If the three Lao girls sitting at the table across from me weren't staring, I think I'd be getting a little weepy.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

End of Term Concert

Last night was our end of term concert! I absolutely cannot believe that it's the end of the school year already.

 Another teacher and I were the MCs. We had a student translate for us.

When I wasn't on stage, I had to look after my 5th graders, so I didn't get any pictures of the performances. But I did get some backstage pictures of some of their costumes.

 There were melancholy girls in flowers,

 silly boys in spots,

 beautiful ballerinas (these are my girls!)

and some kind of shiny reptile-like costume. There were over 20 performances. Our school director believes it is important for every student to be on stage performing, and there are almost 800 students who attend the school.

At the end of the concert, everyone who was left got on stage for a big group photo.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Dragonfruit Tree Resolution- Take 2

I mentioned here about my new new years resolution to find and photograph a dragonfruit tree. After photographing them blurrily from a bus window, I decided that my new criteria was to photograph one whilst standing.

Last week I got a bit closer to my goal! I was so excited to see the tentacle-like leaves (?) of a dragonfruit tree reaching out over a fence not far from where I live.

Now if I could only get into the yard and take a picture of them from the other side of the fence, I can officially cross off this new years resolution!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Puppy Introductions

I love having puppies in the house! They're starting to recognize my voice and get excited when I come home from teaching. And I'm certainly excited to see them running to greet me!

 Here they are!

This is Kuzco. I've already talked a bit about him here. Besides climbing things, he also likes to irritate his mom by chewing on her ears and tail. 

 This is Kevin. He likes to crawl under things such as the couch, the bed, and my motorbike tire.

He also likes to chew on the table with his sister, Mulan. 

This is Mulan. She likes to chew on everything from fingers to electrical cords. She's the puppy most attatched to me, and I often find her whining outside my door.  

This is Tiny. She's the runt. It's difficult for her to walk on the slippery tile floors in my house, so she prefers being outside.

But when she is inside, she likes to be held like this. 

Here's the whole brood!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Clothes Shopping Woes

I went to Home Ideal the other day (the same place I bought these) in search of some colorful summertime shorts.

First I tried these on, but alas, they were too small. Then I noticed that the tag said XL. Bummer.

 So I found some XXXL shorts. They were a tiny bit too big.

Unfortunately the store didn't have any XXLs. I felt like Goldilocks sneaking into a bear home with no baby bear. Where are my 'just right' XXL shorts?

I tried to get a clear picture of the hilarious tag on these Modeng shorts. This was the clearest one I was able to get. (You can see most of the words in the picture above.)

The vogue is your characteristics
it seems that I have nto heard
fantexi is foreve fashion
absolut vogue that the only
choice with you

Puppies- Kuzco

The puppies are growing up so fast! This one is Kuzco. He likes to climb.


Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Unique Treats- Nam Wan

I already talked a little bit here about the delights of nam wan. Last week I went to a place that specializes in it!

 This lady was amazing! The place was packed and she was able to remembered every order perfectly. .

There was so much to choose from! Along with little jellies made out of rice, there was also corn, sticky rice, tapioca, sweet potato, beans, coconut, lychee, lotus root, and many other things I didn't recognize.

I'm not much for corn or beans in my sweets, so I stuck to the colorful jellies and a bit of tapioca.

Impressive- PVC

I was so surprised to see a giant PVC pipe in my face as I was driving. I had to take a picture.


Thursday, May 10, 2012

Unique Treats- Yogurt Cola Gum

It's normal to see strange flavors of drinks, chips and candy, but usually gum flavor is pretty standard- minty or fruity. So I was surprised to see this gum's flavor was neither mint nor fruit. When I first looked at it, I was a bit confused by the smiling popcorn on the left, but I soon realized that they are partially opened cups of yogurt. (Sorry if the wasabi pea background is distracting. Mmmmm...wasabi peas....)

The flavor was very similar to Vanilla Coke (ohhhhh man, I could go for a Vanilla Coke right now. With my wasabi peas.) and it  lasted about 10 seconds. Bubble blowing was a bit strenuous.

The most exciting part for me were these Thai comics on the wrappers. The jokes (as you would expect) are based exclusively on Thai culture and Thai language. Poor Hong had to wring the jokes dry in order to explain them to me, and even then I only really understood one of them!

Friday, May 4, 2012

A Hilarious Test Answer and a Sunrise

Final exam week is DONE and my 5th graders are SO ready for summer break. Unfortunately, vacation doesn't start until June 1, so Monday commences the awkward almost-four-weeks of me trying to resume teaching even though the students know that their grades are already in.

Anyway, on their science final exam, they had to write three ways that a cactus has adapted to live in the desert. Can you guess what this student was trying to say? (The answer is at the very end of this post)

In the meantime, here are two pictures of the beautiful sunrise that we had a couple days ago. I love having a window that faces East!

ANSWER- He was trying to say that the cactus has sharp needles. Though now I can't get the image out of my head of a noodle shaped cactus attacking desert animals. With noodles.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

In Season- Mangosteen

Mangosteen is absolutely my favorite tropical fruit. The texture is like a mix between a banana and a peach and it tastes like every delicious tropical fruit mixed together. You can imagine my delight when Hong brought me a bag of mangosteen (mangosteens? mangsgosteen?) yesterday!

This is a mangosteen. To open it, rip off the bottom half. The outside of a mangosteen is soft, so it's easy to get it open. 

This is the inside of a mangosteen. The edible white part is usually divided into 5-7 segments. The biggest segment has a seed inside of it. The purple part is not edible. Even just licking it gives you cotton-mouth like crazy. The purple juice also stains everything it comes into contact with.

In order to avoid cotton-mouth, squeeze the mangosteen so that the white part partially comes out, then pick it out with your teeth. You will need to make a face similar to or exactly the same as the one I am making.