Thursday, December 30, 2010

Time in HK

Caleb and I just arrived two days ago spending two weeks visiting my parents and, not to mention, seeing my high school friends at our 25th class reunion on Jan 2!! Some pictures of our time in HK can be found here.

Monday, December 27, 2010


Cookie baking and Christmas caroling with students was wonderful. But what we rejoice in during this season goes deeper and more eternal. And we are glad we were able to share that with many students, especially on the 24th, 25th, and 26th, during which students came with us to various Christmas events at our local fellowship. Songs, nativity scenes, special messages...and two special additions to the family, all because of Him. "I will say it again: Rejoice!"

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!!

And here are more December pictures.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

November update

Here are some pictures that serve as an update on our time here for the past month. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Miss Jenny's homework assignment

Jenny's students from her Speaking class were assigned some homework activities, one of which was to hold English speaking parties with the presence of at least one foreign teacher. As you can see in these pictures, our family benefited greatly from this homework assignment!

Friday, October 22, 2010


We were invited to a student's home for lunch a couple weeks ago. Her family has a home like a mansion with fruit trees, ponds, flower gardens, and more. We saw humongous pomelos on this one tree and got to sample one.

Spaghetti and using a fork

I am really glad I was able to make spaghetti the other day for some of Andy's students. It was their first time eating spaghetti and first time using a fork. What fun!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A birthday celebration

A couple weeks ago we had a birthday dinner celebration for one of our dear sisters. The cake really surprised her and brought her to tears. Andy introduced her to our favorite guy JP, and over the summer she worked on translating one of JP's books (50 reasons why J came...) to Vietnamese! Bless her soul!

Caleb's new friend Long

Caleb's been meeting with his new friend Long every week for play time. Long is the son of one of the English teachers here at the University. He's the same age as Caleb and is really good at sports and playing the piano. For now, the only words they speak to each other is basically each other's name...

A special caterpillar

Caleb spotted this interesting looking caterpillar out on the porch!

Faucet contraption

This is the only sink in our university guest house for the three of us and it does not have hot water. But I am so thankful the shower hose is just long enough for me to make this contraption so we have hot water to use in the sink!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Bug collection

Over the summer, the Khuc family showed us their bug collection/specimen. Since coming back to Dalat, Caleb's started this bug collection with an increasing number of amazing creatures. It's been an exciting project for Caleb even though we are amateurs and lack the proper equipment. But bugs and acetone abound in Vietnam, and we are waiting for our next target--a stick bug.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Writing Chinese

Caleb continues to practice writing Chinese characters each week, just for exposure and fun. Here's a short clip of his writing exercise.


Caleb's new friend Sue who's the same age as he is (7) was visiting the other day and doing her writing homework. I was so impressed with her penmanship for a girl her age. I guess I would have to agree there's a big difference not only between a boy's handwriting and a girl's, but also between that of an American and a Vietnamese!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Making Kim Chi

Our teammate Jenny and I got a mini-course on how to make kim chi the other day from our dear Korean neighbor Mrs. Park. We each got to take home a good portion. Caleb actually really likes it even though it is spicy. And I am slowly acquiring the taste as well. Here I am including a short clip of how Mrs. Park rubs the paste onto each leaf. Fun exercise!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Dunkin' pictures of three of Andy's old students in HP brought tears to my eyes when we received them from an email yesterday...

Enjoying the Coconut Jello

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

How you know your son has been "Vietnamized":

When he starts posing with the "victory" sign in pictures.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Young Coconut Jello

Though cooking is still more of a chore than fun to me, Andy's students never fail to delight me in this aspect whenever they come and show me a new dish or dessert. This time they made young coconut jello. First you cut a hole on the top of a peeled young cococut, pour the juice out to make the gelatin mixture, then pour the hot mixture back in the steamed young coconut (so the jello will stick to the coconut flesh). Refrigerate until set and cut into wedges and enjoy!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Mid-autumn festival

We sampled some interesting moon cakes from the school this year, including a chocolate one and a green bean pandan leaf one. Caleb also got a nice lantern from a student and had a nice outing with a new friend (cousin of the student who gave him the lantern). His new friend "Sue" came to play a couple times, and one time with another younger cousin. Caleb enjoyed showing them all his trinkets and toys.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

All in Three Days!

Wed midnight: took a bus to SG
Wed 6:30am: arrived in SG
Wed 10am: appointment with dentist
Wed 10:30am: root canal started
Wed 1:00pm: root canal done, walked back to hotel
Thu 8:30am: more root canal, post implant, molding, temp crown
Thu noon: done, walked back to hotel
Fri 11:00am: back to dentist for the real crown
Fri 12:00am: done, paid $800USD, went to lunch, taxi to bus station
Fri 1:45pm: boarded bus
Fri 10:00pm: got home, sore gum, aching back, very tired and sleepy
How would this have happened in SJ, where my dentist was 2 minutes away?

Friday, September 10, 2010

A few updates

We've been back in Vietnam for over 3 weeks now. Last week was a highlight where we spent 3 days in Haiphong visiting old students and teammates and then 5 days in Hanoi with Team Vietnam on our annual retreat. We are now back in Dalat with our new teammate for a new school year.

In Haiphong, we spent some kindred moments with team and flock, eating and sharing together. The picture shows the girls picking rau muong for dinner!

While in Hanoi, we met the sister of one of Andy's old students who is working as a legal assistant in the capitol. She insisted on bringing dinner to the hotel for us. So we enjoyed a nice bun cha night snack as seen in picture.

The first weeks back in Vietnam always means lots of cleaning. After cleaning up our room which was infested with rice weevils, we helped our teammate clean up her room which had a fridge infested with thousands of maggots. Actually it was not us but students who really helped her clean up the room. You can see the maggots in the fridge magnified in the picture. It was my first time in over 40 years seeing these horrid creatures. Caleb also was a mighty little helper in sweeping the whole corridor for the foreign teachers while the cleaning lady from the university dusted the doors this morning. The guesthouse for foreign teachers is again filled for the semester, with three older Korean couples, a new older Japanese teacher, another teacher from the US, and our team.

Being back also means lots of catching up with students. You can see in the picture Andy and Caleb introducing their new frisbee from the US to one of Andy's students in the backyard. And some students already came to cook dinner for us as shown in the picture where you can also see our new teammate Jenny.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Back in Vietnam

The first days back in Vietnam always make me nostalgic and homesick. Yes, I do miss home--beautiful and comfortable America and Hong Kong--especially when we came back to a room infested with rice weevils (from a bag of glutinous rice we left behind), worms emerging from cracked tile floors in the bathroom, and a big cockroach running under our bed! But God is good. The three of us, together with 5 pieces of luggage, made it safely back to Vietnam after 3 flights and 2 long layovers. Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Some more pictures

I've uploaded some random pictures here taken in the latter part of our summer. Caleb and I are in Hong Kong now visiting with family and friends. A few more days and we'll be meeting up with Andy at the airport and fly back to Vietnam! Maybe because Caleb is older now, he unusually missed the US this time around. Leaving Daddy behind made it doubly hard. But he's enjoyed his share of fun here in Hong Kong playing with his grannies, eating delicious food, and going to the science museum once again.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Last Meal in the US

This is what Caleb requested today as his last meal before going back to Asia. We will all miss it...

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


It's been wonderful seeing friends and being pampered by special treats back home in California. Some have treated us to amusement parks and zoos and to dinners. Here is Caleb enjoying the merry-go-round with Eli at Happy Hollow, and an after-dinner picture with my bridesmaids and college friends of 24 years. Caleb got to watch airplanes landing by SF Bay all throughout dinner at Elephant Bar. He had a blast and we are thankful for the love of friends.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Things we pack

Yes, we do pack brownie mixes and Jello with us though not as much as some of our teammates do. And we've learned to toss the outer packaging and keep the instructions!