Saturday, September 30, 2006


I found more white hair today!!!! :(

Yesterday, the Taiwan government announced a national 5 day holiday next week. Originally, we had friday off, the go to school on Monday, and have Tuesday off for 10/10. Now we can possibly go to Kenting!!! yay!

Off to church. more to come later.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

For the love of hip-hop

Go to

and download his music...or else.

Today, I got my first card from a student for Teacher's Day (which is tomorrow). I wrapped my presents for Judy, Michelle (the girl who teaches me Chinese) and Wei (aka handsome badminton teacher).

I went for accupuncture for my shoulder...why did I ever take all that medicine?!? My arm feels funny. I think I will switch doctors to Dr. Tien. That way we can pray while my treatments are done. yeehaw! A Christian doctor!

Monday, September 25, 2006

I just wanted to scream today....

I was just so angry and upset about a whole lot of things....the fact that textbooks just arrived, after a month of school!!! The fact that students come 10 and 20 minutes late to class because teachers are still doing things with them. It's like English class is a joke. Oh, and students didn't practice their work at home and many came without textbooks. Nothing a really good game of badminton can't cure! Actually, I played and just killed the shuttlecocks. I told everyone that I need to get some aggression out...move out of the way! After two hours of badminton, I arrived home at 6:30pm. I walked to the night market. It's almost 2km away...good walk! I decided to take the alley streets. I got there just fine. But on the way home, I missed a turn and ended up in Tainan County!!!! I was so lost and walked around for 45 minutes before I could find a store!!! I'm glad I can say....Dongning Road...where? in Chinese...Someone told me how to get there. They thought I was on a scooter. I started to walk away and they start's so far away. It's too far away!!! I replied...I have no choice! Luckly, I had my ipod...mercy me kept me company until the battery died about 5 minutes from my apartment.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Raise your hands all ye nations...

shout to God all awesome is the Lord most high...

for keeping me safe. Linda was hit by a car this past week. She is not hurt...bruises and a quite sore body...I saw so many people hit on scooters this morning on my way to church. One man ended up lying on the ground almost under a parked car. Thank you Jesus for keeping me safe.

Today my new friend from South Africa left. She is going to work with YWAM (Youth with a Mission) in Taipei. I will miss her dearly. I am having dinner with a Taiwanese girl tonight. Let's just say, it's an awesome ministry opportunity. I am grateful for this divine appointment.

I was blessed at church today. The youth led worship: Tell the World, Dancing Generation, (another song...) and How Great is Our God. There was a really nice lunch that I was unable to attend. The pastor and lots of other people seem very interested in getting to know me. I think I will start going to intercessory prayer at 6:30 am on Wednesdays! Yikes! Talk about needed discipline for that one.

In other news...I met a guy from New York City today. He is a Mets fan. It would never work.
I had breakfast with Judy Liu yesterday. I am getting really good at badminton. I am almost ready to kick the behinds of my male co-workers in the game. (Ni pa wo ma? ha ha ha) I have invited them to come to my classes so they could have free English lessons. I'm such a nice person...haha!

Oh, and I'm addicted to green tea.

Ok, back to lesson planning...

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Staff bonding trip...

to New York City....July 2007!!!

Now, I just have to tell my mom.


One of the sixth grade homeroom teachers told me today just how much his kids like me. They keep a diary for class and have written about me. They like that I play basketball with them. They try to steal the ball, but they say I'm too good! This really blessed me today.

Oh!! And MOE gave me 110,000 TWD for in-country flights, supplies, and things that I need (well, a microwave)!!!!! That transfers to about $3,470 U.S. Dollars!!!! Yeehaw!!! I will be purchasing a laminator and a new printer for our English classroom...not to mention my microwave! :)

My students chose the song they want to perform for the English competition: You Can't Hurry Love by The Supremes. I'm so excited to teach them this song!!! It's one of my faves!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

I'm not afraid to fall. It means that I have climbed up high.

To paraphrase Dietrich Bonhoeffer...Expect for Jesus, nothing else matters. Well, said, sir! This is something that I need to stamp on my forehead, write down my arms, stencil it onto all my clothes, etc...

Today was a bit better. I have my first Living Waters home group meeting tonight (at 9pm). All foreigners, well, most are from South Africa. I'm also going to an outreach at the bus station on Saturday. The youth are putting on a "rock" concert. They had a little preview during ministry time on Sunday. They did Chris Tomlin's, "How Great is our God," in Chinese. It's pretty easy! Soon I'll be able to sing it in 3 languages! yeehaw. I'm excited for Saturday. Please keep this in prayer.

I heard that one of my pastors is in South Korea. He's so close!!! I miss him. Thanks to my pastors for teaching me about excellence.

While I remember...I want to thank my co-operating teacher, Matt, from student teaching. Thank you for teaching me about organization and the importance of being prepared before students arrive, professionalism, and classroom management. (Oh! And how can I forget the teacher voice)! I feel so well prepared in teaching (when someone actually tells me what I should be doing, rather than the do whatever you want approach) and others have noticed. Although it's not social studies, I think I will make you proud! (I taught some of my students about the structure of American goverment...).
I've been visiting a lot of temples (I think that's my problem)! Well, anyway...I like to go and watch people there and pray. How deceived people are. It really grieves my spirit and it takes everything within me to hold back tears. I see these "wishes" and prayers to dead people on the walls, and think....If only you knew what Jesus does!

But I will save this for another time. It's really been on my heart heavily.

Last set.


I know you can't get enough...

What y'all been waitin' for....

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Prayer request.

I had a miserable day today. I'm not complaining...just frustrated. I woke up today so angry and upset that no one wants to put work into anything. If something requires a person to do extra work, no one wants a part of it...even students! Students want to be in this competition but they don't want to practice and don't want to stay after school...ugh!!! Teachers in the U.S. stay late and take on extra work all the time. I just don't get it.
Then I was almost hit by a car who decided to turn right from the far left lane. I pulled the brake very hard and he just missed the front of my scooter.

Hm..oh yeah. I was playing basketball with the coach and 2 other students today. I took off with the ball and ended up cutting my knee up. It still stings. Our outside courts have a lot of dirt from the wind blowing it. It's very, very slippery! Ouch!

My day was made slightly better after school during badmiton. The guys always order tea. They always ask me what I want and I say the same tea with half sugar (the drinks here are way too sweet)! Well, no one asked me today and I figured that no one ordered anything...then the tea guy of the teachers came over and he set mine down on the nice!!!! They remembered what I like!!!

In other news, I might go back to St. Petersburg for a visit in July. One of my co-workers really wants to go, however, he's concerned about safety, etc. I said I would love to go back...and then I could show him around. I actually remember some of the language too!

I really love traveling. I think I want to be a nomad.

Sunday, September 17, 2006


I really, really like the church I've been going to. I can't wait to start attending the home groups this week. Today, for some reason, every headset I put on would not come in clear. I think it had to do with the fact I was surrounded by other headsets. (My knowledge on radio waves is quite limited). I finally took it off. My sermon notes consist of the Chinese characters I copied from the power point. I now know the characters for "come," "take," "find," Jesus, "give up control," "partnership," "learn to trust," "aggression," and "arrogance." Soon I will start writing sermons in Chinese! What do you think?

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Music at the Towers.

Linda and I had a lovely evening listening to a jazz band at the Chihkan Towers. I think I got hit on by an American...but I'm not completely sure. He did ask for my number...He seems nice...

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The one month mark.

I can't believe I've been here a whole month. It feels like years. My Chinese is coming along. I'm extremely busy. I leave for school at 6:55 am and do not come home until 6pm on most days. Some of the things I'm doing: I have 24 classes to teach (I meet with each class once a week...24 classes x 30 students...720 students...and some classes have much more than 30 students...) On Fridays, I travel to another school and teach 6 classes. I teach another teacher English twice a week for 40 minutes. I am the sponsoring teacher for the Drama Club. I am writing a play to perform in December based on the short story "The Gift of the Magi." I am also currently writing an English conversation and American culture book for children. I am in charge of teaching the entire school the weekly English phrase. I am teaching them Shel Silverstein's poem, "It's Hot." Apparently, the principal loves this idea! What else....Oh, yes, there is some huge English competition in Tainan City. Guess who is the trainer for our school. I am training students for the read-a-loud, storytelling, and chorus competitions. I'm teaching children to sing!!! At practice today, I attempted to get these children mad and didn't work. They just stand there and smile! (But, yet, they understand what it means to get mad). I'm organizing a school-wide event for halloween. I just finished my proposal today. I take Chinese lessons twice a week with the teacher I'm teaching English to. Oh, yes, my badminton lessons...they want me to come 5 times a week. It works out to maybe 3...I will try for 4 next week. I really like the guys that I play with. I have so much fun laughing at them. They are so serious about the sport. This one guy gets all macho about it. It cracks me up! And I have two 4th grade male students who are in love with has asked if he could be my boyfriend....And finally, I am going to Thailand and China in February...yay!!!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Why, oh why?

Did Nicholas Cage have to die in the movie?!?! Linda and I went to the movies since the concert was cancelled due to weather. We went down to Anping harbour today. Pictures to come...

You know, Linda and I have been discussing...everyone else is always asking "where shall we go this weekend? We need to get out..." Yet, we are constantly busy around town. I think everyone should come visit us. There's so much to do in Tainan!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Happy Labor Day!

All you who did not have school today....I feel sorry for you. :)

I forgot to mention that on Saturday, Linda and I drove down on my scooter to Kaohsiung County and found the beach!!! The water was so warm! We found some pretty beautiful shells as well.

There were some people windsurfing...(I dont' know what else to call it). They had attached themselves to kites and were skimming across the water. If I had a swimsuit on, I would have asked to try it out.

I liked this fish. It was pretty.

Today I started badminton lessons after school. I had a lot of fun. My teacher doesn't speak English. It's pretty interesting. I played with some teachers and the principal. I got hit directly in between my eyes with the shuttlecock twice! All I could do is laugh at myself! Here are some pictures of me playing for the first time....

My principal is the guy in the white shirt to the left of the sign. Judy is in the yellow.

I'm playing against the principal....I can't beat him, I want to keep my job!!!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

A new church for nicole?

I think I found a church for me today. It's called Living Water. It is an Apostolic center if I ever did see one. Their vision is to train up the body to go out into the nations....They are into training ordinary people for missions and ministry...hmmm.... I asked some good questions today during a lunch meeting for new members and those who wanted info. I will be going to some of the home groups next week... Happy Sunday!

Friday, September 01, 2006

More pictures

My first week in Tainan City!

Linda and I are famous!!!!!! I have been getting recognized in the street by strangers!!!! We were in 3 or 4 newspapers this week. Here's two of

Sorry for not updating in a while. I have been so busy!! This is my first night off since I arrived a few weeks ago. I have gotten the run around from all walks of life here. I have to constantly remind myself that this is not the U.S...(I find myself saying...well, if the institution would only process paperwork in a certain way or organize in this manner...and then I stop...) Things are finally starting to fall into place. I moved into my apartment (or should I say dormroom) last Saturday. I got my ARC card on Wednesday, my driving permit (I found a loophole around the 1 year ARC requirement), a motorcycle, and a cellphone (which took 2 hours to acquire)!

I am teaching at two schools and it seems as if I will be doing 3 times as much work as Linda is doing. I'm beginning to dread this semester! I have 24 sections ranging from 3rd to 6th grades. I also have 2 sections of teaching the teachers English. In addition, I am heading up the city competition in English for our school. And am in charge the weekly English sentence lesson for the whole school. For the first ten weeks, I have decided to teach the students the poem "It's Hot" by Shel Silverstein. I think it's completely relevant to them! However, I love my students!!! Most of them can not speak English, but they keep coming into my classrooms during their breaks just to look at me and say hello! Three of my students told my co-teacher yesterday that they wanted to tell me, "I love you," but were too shy. On Thursday, I took my 6th graders to play basketball during class. Of course I had to show off a bit and kicked all their behinds! They enjoyed it though.

I haven't had the opportunity to take pictures at Chang-an Elementary. But I took a few today at the second school (I still don't know the name of the school)!

These are some of my students:

Two things that I really like about schools in Taiwan: Students come in every morning and clean the entire school, including the classrooms!!! The second is nap time. Everyone takes a one hour nap after lunch. I am having a hard time adjusting to that though...

These are my students sleeping today.....

My co-teacher at Chang-an, Judy, is wonderful! We are completely alike and finish each other's sentences! How strange is that! She has been a huge blessing to me (and Linda). I could not have made it through this week without her driving me around, translating for me, and making sure my meals have no fish in them (as I am allergic to fish)! I told her my goal for the year is to find her a good husband...any takers? :)

What else? I have made some amazing friends during training (you know who you are). In addition, Linda and I are quickly becoming good friends with a family in Tainan City. The family has 4 girls. Dad is a doctor and mom a former piano teacher. They have graciously bussed Linda and I to Carrefour for all our needs. They have welcomed us into their home for dinner. Taken us to another family's home for dinner and a walk at the harbor in Kaohsiung County.

Here are a few pictures from our outing in Kaohsiung County:

The family has been so kind to us! They are taking us to a classical piano concert tomorrow night. (Oh and the best part about them...they are Christians!...Their 17 year old girl was teaching me some worship songs in Chinese)!

I am adjusting well here. I like city a great deal. I really like the fact that I have my motorcycle and no longer have to depend on Judy. My Chinese is improving. I went ordered dinner for Linda and I in Chinese tonight.

I'm quite tired and cannot think I will leave you with some pictures from my last few days in Taipei County. Enjoy...

Oh...this was my bed that I tried not to complain about!!!

The above is my fave picture!

Doug, keyi shuaka ma?