Easy Weekend Breakfast

I love breakfast food, and I like to exercise a little creativity when making breakfast for Domingos and myself on the weekends. This morning, I decided to make breakfast pizzas and they came out perfectly!

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November 2016 Book Round-up

I either got a lot less picky this month or really lucked out with books, as I loved almost everything I read in November!

25812109The Female of the Species, by Mindy McGinnis: Excellent, raw book about rape, sexual assault, and slut-shaming. The story is told from three different perspectives: Alex, a violent loner whose older sister was raped and killed three years before the book takes place; Jack, the golden boy who finds himself falling for Alex; and Peekay, the preacher’s daughter who volunteers at an animal shelter with Alex. Brutal ending but it felt right. VGR Continue reading

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Olympic Park

Last weekend on a beautiful fall day, Domingos and I decided to check out Olympic Park, where the 1988 Olympics took place. The park was actually built in 1986 for the 1986 Asian Games as well as the 1988 Seoul Olympics. In the middle of the park, there’s an old site known as Mongchon Fortress, where there were large areas covered up with tarps that appeared to be archeological digs in progress. Hundreds of sculptures are scattered all over the park and there are many walking paths. Continue reading

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What Really Matters

Eating and drinking, of course! I know you’re all dying to know what I’ve been eating lately. The answer is: there haven’t been a lot of new places to share as I’ve been visiting old favorites, but here are a few great new locations for consuming calories. Continue reading

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Music and Art

A couple of weeks ago, we attended the Korean Ministry of National Defense 5th Marching Song Competition at KBS Hall. It was quite interesting – and long. We were there almost three hours with no intermission! The first half of the program was for civilian groups, though there was a strong patriotic theme with Korean flags everywhere and some of the groups using camo print in their outfits. Here are a few photos of first half performers: Continue reading

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Chrysanthemum Festival

Last week, I went to a lovely chrysanthemum festival at the Jogyesa Temple near Insadong.  I believe the festival is there until November 11, so there’s still time to go and see this autumn flower showcased in many different ways.

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Out and About in the Fall

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A week ago, I went to Nami Island with a few friends. We ended up missing the fast train, so we were stuck taking the regular subway to get there. With a long transfer wait partway, it took over two hours! After buying the fast tickets back in advance, we headed out to find lunch (chicken barbecue) and then took the ferry to Nami Island. We only had about 45 minutes to enjoy Nami Island, but it was long enough to appreciate the gorgeous fall foliage. It’s really worth a trip there in the fall, but plan ahead better than I did to avoid having to stand for two hours on the subway the entire way! Continue reading

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October 2016 Book Round-up

28214365Commonwealth, by Ann Patchett: This book was a slow starter for me, but I’m so glad I stuck with it. It dips in and out of the lives of the Cousins and Keating families. Bert Cousins fell in love with Beverly Keating at her daughter’s christening party, and when she left her husband Fix for Bert, it had lasting effects on the two Keating daughters and the four Cousins children. Nine chapters cover five decades and rather than feeling my usual annoyance at stories that skip over huge sections of history, I was fully engaged with the emotions and feelings explored in each new chapter. Patchett does a brilliant job of painting a whole picture without having to spell everything out for the reader. VGR

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Jeju Day Four

So I was really determined that we climb Hallasan Mountain, despite the weather trying to stop us. Sunday was supposed to be rainy in the early morning, then give over to strong winds. Perfect! We arrived at Seongpanak trailhead a little after 8. The parking lot was already full, so we just parked along the shoulder like everyone else. We sat in the car for a bit, hoping the drizzle would stop, but then just decided to go for it. I had my rain jacket, and we picked up a cheap poncho for Domingos at the trailhead shop. Continue reading

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Jeju Day Three, Part 2

Next up, the Chocolate Museum. This was weird and random but also interesting. I think I would have gotten more out of it if I didn’t already know a lot about the history of chocolate as well as having visited a cacao plantation when I was in Grenada. The museum makes its own chocolates on-site, and the sample they gave us was some of the best I’ve ever had, anywhere. We decided to each part with some of our fun money to buy some chocolates, which were definitely on the pricy side! Having had a couple out of the box already, I can assure you that they were worth it. Continue reading

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Jeju Day Three, Part 1

Hey look, another rainy, overcast day in Jeju! That’s okay, today was museum day. Our first (and best) stop was the Nexon Computer Museum in Jeju City. This museum was awesome, filled with old computers and the history of computing. They did an outstanding job putting it together. The reason I had even heard about the museum in the first place was an article on the most Instagram-able desserts in Korea, and the computer museum cafe serves up a waffle in the shape of a keyboard. Sadly, we weren’t remotely hungry at that point, so I settled for a picture of the waffle on a menu. Continue reading

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Jeju Day One

We made it from our house to Gimpo airport in good time for our 9:45 flight. The subway ride was only about 30 minutes, an easy one-transfer journey. Our flight was delayed 35 minutes, but we eventually set off and were on our way to Jeju Island. Once we landed, we went to the exit where the rental car shuttles were supposed to be, and there was a Sixt shuttle there waiting. Picking up our car was easy and fast, and the company gave us a detailed instruction sheet on how to use the Korean GPS (which spoke to us in English, conveniently). The best way to navigate on Jeju is to enter a location’s phone number.  Continue reading

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Jeju Day Two

Despite waking up to rain and gray skies, we were determined to get some sightseeing in! Our first stop was Cheonjeyeon Falls, located right in the Jungmun Resort Compex. The Falls have three locations, and we chose to only look in at the first two. The first was not actually a waterfall, just a pretty pool. I think it has a waterfall when the rains are very heavy. Location two was a beautiful waterfall, there’s not a whole lot more to say about it.

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Suwon Fortress Wall

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I’ve had the Hwaseong Fortress in Suwon on my must-visit list for a while now, and last Sunday we finally decided to go check it out. It was a perfect fall day, sunny but not too hot. Continue reading

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International Fireworks Festival

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Last weekend, my awesome friend Jen invited us to a V.I.P. viewing reception for the Seoul International Fireworks Festival, sponsored by the Hanwha Group. The reception was in a cafe on the Han River right in front of the 63 Building, with a perfect central view of the fireworks. The best part might have been the chartered bus ride there and back, given the horror stories I had heard about public transportation during the festival.  Continue reading

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