Saturday, December 29, 2007

Grandpa Jo's Birthday

The year is ending off well. Although I'm burning out at work, the end is so near. I shouldn't say "the end" because I will more than likely continue to work with my company. We're just going to have different arrangements. Those will be clear hopefully this week after a meeting with my boss. He's been in meetings these days about a possible merger, which could affect upcoming projects. I'm not too worried though, as my boss and I both want to continue to work with each other. I'm pretty optimistic about 2008.

Today was a nice day. I woke up late, had a coffee, and started a new doilie. That's my kind of morning. I decided to try White Fan Doilie. So far, not bad. My plan is to finish a project in my WIP basket, then make a doilie, the another WIP, etc, until all my WIPs are done. I want to get some hibernating WIPs out of the way so I can start knitting up all my old yarn and then not feel guilty about buying new stuff.
An Inspired Lace Scarf is done! I'm soooo happy with it. For a while, I was considering scrapping it because first I thought it looked ugly, and then I was having trouble sewing the motifs together...I was really close to packing it in. But the final product is much better than I had expected, so I'm a happy hooker. This is a pattern that I wouldn't mind doing again in a different yarn.
Today we went to Sejin's "small" aunt and uncle's place in Shiheung. It was a bit of a trek to get there, but we had a nice time. It was his grandfather's birthday, so the whole family was there. I was especially happy to see little Seoyun. Her and I hit it off right away a few years ago when we first met. She's always really happy to see me, and strangely enough, doesn't find it odd that I don't speak Korean very well. She was the proud recipient of petunia the pig, which I found out tonight, has a special place right on her living room sofa! Even more exciting tonight was meeting her little brother, Seojin. What a cute little boy.

Tomorrow I may try to make it to stitch n bitch. It's been quite a while and since I last went, and I hardly know anyone -- maybe one person, but probably a good reason to go. I hear it's going to be a really cold one though, so I hope that doesn't make me too lazy...

Friday, December 28, 2007

Challenge to myself

I'm here at the's almost 3:30pm on a Friday afternoon. I've just realized that I haven't been very productive these days. I think I'm dealing with burn out. I've got two other Internet windows open -- Ravelry, and Facebook. I was thinking. I wonder how much work I could get done in an hour if I didn't surf at the same time. So, a little experiment (and I'm writing about it here to hold myself accountable).

So, I will close down my unnecessary Internet windows now and see how much work I can get done by... say... 5:00. That's 1 1/2 hours. I'll edit this post at 5:00 to report how many pages I've written.

3:29 p.m. - START!

5:09 p.m. - Times up...

Well, not a bad experiment. I got 5 pages done in 1 1/2 hours. That must be a record for the last couple of months. I've been slowing down a lot. But the end of this project is finally in sight --> 3 more books after this one...ouch.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve at the office

Christmas in Korea is not that bad. I guess because Koreans don't get hyped up about Christmas, I don't really get hyped up. Some people go out of their way to have a special Christmas, spending hundreds to have a traditional dinner at a hotel or something, but I don't see the point. I don't want to feel Christmassy because then I'll be let down and wish I were at home. I have a little Christmas tree at home, and that's quite enough for Korea.
So, here I am at the office, chatting on MSN with my brother. It's not so bad. There's not even a Christmas tree in our office, so I sometimes forget it's even Christmas.

That's not to say I won't slack off today. I brought a crocheted scarf I'm working on. I'm in the last stages, so I'm itching to keep working on it.

Speaking of crocheting, yesterday was a really good day because I finished my Starburst Doilie. I was especially pleased with this one because my previous attempt failed miserably. It's all ironed and starched now. It's in no way perfect, but with this kind of detailed crocheting, I have to be patient and learn little by little.
Oh yes, and the program I was in on KBS2 actually aired last weekend. It was weird to see myself on TV this time because i was on pretty much continuously for about 20 minutes. It was funny. It was hard shooting it, but I guess it was worth it in the end. It's not something I'm going to do often though....17 hours of hard shooting for $200....uughh.Well, back to "work"...I should get something done today...

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Pinwheel Treat

So happy to be done this guy! It didn't take me too long and it was my first time working with crochet thread this thin. Who knew making doilies would be this much fun? Right now it's drying in a water/glue solution to make it a little stiff. There are three mistakes in it that I know of, and they are quite obvious, but I don't care since it was so much fun to make. I'm gonna stop by Dongdaemun tomorrow morning and pick up some different coloured thread and more hooks so I can start another one.

Saturday, December 1, 2007


Well, it was a long week during which I didn't get much sleep. As a result, I woke up this morning with not much of a voice left. Although I started feeling bad yesterday, I still made it out to Dongdaemun last night...I don't think it would matter how sick I was -- Dongdaemun has a way of making me feel all better. Gorgeous jackets for $50-$100...that's therapy in itself. I was really good last night. I only bought one jacket for $50 although there were many other tempting items.
One of my favourite malls in Dongdaemun, Doota:

I was supposed to visit my friend Ed today at lunch and meet his little baby, Hannah, but I didn't think showing up sick would be very welcome. So, it's postponed yet again.

Not much else is new except I found a great pattern for a crocheted hat called Amelia. I whipped up Amelia Wednesday night and it's so cute. I plan to make more of these for myself and as gifts.

Back to the couch!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Move a success! And life is very busy

The move went very smoothly. There were no problems at all. I couldn't believe how quick and efficient the movers were. Only in Korea could you have four people come to your house, pack up all your stuff, move it, unpack it in your new place, and then clean up after themselves for $500! It was great.
So, Sejin and I are settling in well. The place is coming together and slowly becoming more and more cozy. Sleeping on a bed has been wonderful. Getting a kitchen island was the best decision I ever made. I ordered curtains for the living room yesterday. I get to pick those up next weekend = exciting! Toto is settling in well, too.

While I was so busy preparing for the move and after we moved in, I was very busy. Work was busy. I got calls to do several TV shows...had several auditions and failed them -- well, got one, but then it was cancelled. I ended up doing "Sponge," which was a lot of fun because I really like that show. I used to edit the subtitles for it when I worked at Furmo and it was one of the few shows I enjoyed, so it was great to be on it! I played a nurse to the doctor who gave the first lobotomies. It was just a small part, but it's been on several times so far. While chatting with Miae on messenger today, she said, "I think I saw you on TV...were you a nurse?"
I shot another popular Korea show (위기탈출 넘버원) last Wednesday which I don't know the English name for. It was a major part, so I'm in much of the program. The money was crap, but I just did it for the experience because I've never had a role that big. I learned a valuable lesson that day. Korean PDs will always try to fit in multiple days of work into one day. We shot for 17 hours, most of which was outside in sub zero temperatures (there was snow on the ground!) and I was without a jacket for some of it, even laying on the road! At 1:30 a.m. I decided enough was enough. They didn't even give us a proper dinner -- not even drinks...So I threatened to leave the set unless it wrapped up FAST. So it ended on a bad note, but I'm glad I did it and I'm looking forward to seeing myself playing this part.

So, because I've been taking days here and there off of work to do these TV jobs, I'm so behind in my work! I've spent all of today working from home, trying to catch up. I figure by Tuesday I'll be back on track. I'm going to have to be a little more picky about the jobs I take on.

It's been a good weekend nonetheless. Yesterday I intended to do my work, but ended up shopping in Dongdaemun and Jongno with Meg. Last night I made some magnets for my fridge...

Oh, yes, my Total Tote knitting bag arrived on Friday! I'm really excited. It's a nice bag with tonnes of little compartments for my DPNs, stitch holders, measuring tape, scissors, buttons, etc. Maybe it's just exciting for me, but anyway...

Time to start getting ready for work tomorrow. Perhaps some knitting before bed...

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Tomorrow's the big day

Well, tomorrow is the day. The movers will come at 2:30, pack our stuff and move us to Jegi-dong. It's really exciting. Our bed, kitchen island, and bookshelves are also coming tomorrow. It's going to be weird adjusting to a new area. I really liked living in Edae. Everything was so convenient. Just on the way home was a pharmacy, our vet, several restaurants, tailors, and convenience stores. I have also come to know a lot of the business owners in the area and say hello to some of them daily. I'll be starting from scratch in Jegi! Oh well, maybe I'll even like the new area better.
My birthday was last Saturday. I decided for once in my adult life that I wanted to have a little get-together with my friends. It was good. We had dinner at a restaurant called Vicolo, which was alright (poor service and the food wasn't that good), and then went to a little bar in Shinchon called Watts on Tap. I think everyone had a good time and it was nice to get together with some friends.
So, tonight we have some last minute stuff to do before tomorrow, mainly packing our valuables which we'll take ourselves tomorrow.

Thursday, November 1, 2007


As usual, I've been poor at posting. I hope that will change after we move and things die down a little. It turns out that being kicked out of our apartment by our nutso landlady was a good thing because we're moving into a much nicer place. Things always seem to work out for the best. I'm glad all that stressing is over. I was so afraid we would have to move into another crappy place, but instead, we're moving in a BRAND NEW apartment in a good area. I'm half waiting to see what's wrong with the place. Anyway, we move in November 9th. That day can't come fast enough. The longer I'm in this place, the more I hate it! I can't wait to move!

Some pics, of course...
The main room:

The kitchen....Well, it's hardly a kitchen, but anyway....

The main bathroom...This is exciting stuff. Many Korean apartments don't have bathtubs. I haven't had a full sized bathtub in over five years.
The main bedroom (the biggest of three):The second bathroom...I don't know why a place this size has two bathrooms. We won't use the shower in here...I'll likely use it as my makeup room.

So there it is. I'll take pictures for sure after I'm finished decorating. Decorating probably won't consist of too much. Probably jsut some drapes, but it'll be exciting to move in nonetheless.

In other news...not much. Been keeping busy with moving plans mostly, like ordering a few new pieces of furniture, the most exciting of which is bed. Now that I think of it, it's pretty amazing that I've lived here for over five years without a bed or a bathtub.

Last Saturday night, Meg, Shelley, and I were paid guests at a wedding. We were each paid $50 to pretend to be friends of the groom so he could appear to be more worldly and have more friends. He actually hired a movie director to direct his wedding. Kind of sad, but we got a nice steak and a bit of cash out of it! Here's us after working hard at the wedding:

Oh yes, most importantly, another WIP...An Inspired Lace Scarf, a pattern I found on Ravelry. I think I'm going to keep this scarf for myself, although I originally intended to give it to Meg for her birthday. I think she would like another colour better, so I'm viewing this one as the practice run. So far, so good! It's an easy pattern, pretty, and it crochets up really quickly.

That's it for me. Tomorrow's Friday! And Saturday is my birthday dinner!

Monday, October 15, 2007

It never ends

Just when things seem to be going really smoothly... Sometimes people can be so shallow.

Our lease is finished in February. For a year and a half, Sejin and I have been saving and planning to move in FEBRUARY. Our landlady has been harassing us with phone calls -- she wants us to move out.


In Korea, it's standard practice for an apartment owner to pay for their tenants moving fees (ie truck) if they want them to move out early. This I know firsthand because I have several friends who OWN apartments and have asked their tenants to move out. They paid their tenants' moving fees (or at least offered to) and the tenants either moved out, or decided to stay until the end of the contract. My own boss who sits next to me at work told me this because she once did it herself, being an apartment owner.

Apparently, my landlady feels that this standard practice does not apply to her. She's cheap. And she has allowed her 87-year-old mother in law to live in a storage facility on our roof. Oh yeah, she's also a devoted Christian. And most importantly, she's very wealthy.

I'm confused. If she wants us out so bad, bad enough to keep calling us and asking when the hell we're getting out, why doesn't she just cough up the cash? It's accepted practice here and she definitely has the money. It's all very strange.

She also insulted us tonight. Sejin told her that we are looking for another place (which we are), and she said, "You want a place you can't have." In other words, "You don't have much money, so just settle for a crap place and get out of my building." I'm mostly upset by this comment. It really shows how shallow and cold she is.

This is also all very bothersome because Sejin and I have been great tenants. We're not noisy or destructive. We're very clean -- the cockroaches that were here when we first moved in are long gone. We did not complain at all when we moved into a very dirty place. We also didn't complain about the kitchen cupboard doors that were falling off, or the medicine cabinet that is falling down, or the yellowing wallpaper, or the gross woodwork.

Anyway, it's very upsetting that people who I once thought were decent people are actually pretty low. I just want to be done with them.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

The Month of September

It's certainly been a long time since I last updated this blog. That's because of many reasons ranging from laziness to the sad fact that nobody reads it. Nonetheless, here's a summary of what I've been up to.

I went home to visit my family in Canada from Sept. 17 to Oct. 3rd. It was a short but relaxing trip consisting of lots of eating, sleeping, and shopping. With the Canadian dollar basically at par with the U.S. dollar, there was no way my mom and I could resist crossing the border....four times. But I behaved myself and bought mostly things I needed --- not even one ball of yarn! I did buy three pounds of yarn back in Canada though...but three big balls isn't bad compared with the three boxes I bought last year....

Here are some random pictures from the trip:
My friend Tracey's little girl, Ella. She was pretty thrilled with the hat I brought her!

I was reunited with Boyd, the poodle I bought in Korea a few years back. I don't think he remembered me. But he looks really smart in his new Burberry outfit.Me and Tom, my eight-year-old nephew.

Me and my grandma, who turned 90 in August.
Me and my best friends from elementary school, Deanna and Nadia. I found these old friends through facebook. It was great catching up with them after about 15 years! Thanks facebook!

So those are some highlights.

So now I'm back to work, slaving away on the elementary books. I'm trying to pick up the pace a little bit so I can finish the whole series before my contract is done. The office is very quiet these days, but the atmosphere is good and I'm very productive lately.

In my knitting life, something very exciting happened....I'm finally on Ravelry! I was on the waiting list for over two months and I thought I'd never get on, but one magical day I got my invitation...and it happened to be when I was on vacation, so it couldn't have been better timing. I was able to waste several hours getting my "notebook" all ready without feeling guilty. Not much else is new in my knitting life. I'm really trying to discipline myself to finish projects that have been sitting around for months, or even years! Last night I got out the hideous purple more sleeve left to go before it's out of my sight and in my closet!

I did start one more project, which I really shouldn't have done, but I was home and just bought three pounds of soft yarn perfect for a cozy afghan. I'm making up the pattern myself, so it could be trouble, so we'll see how it goes. I call it the Cable and Trellis Afghan.

I'm knitting it in panels so I don't go nuts carrying around a huge blanket. I hope this one works out. I've brought my other afghan, the "knit granny square afghan" to work because I figure if it's there, then I'll knit it, and sooner or later it'll get done.

So that's where we're at. I had lunch today at "Santorini" in Itaewon for my friend, Shelley's, birthday. In the past it wasn't too bad, but today the only decent Greek restaurant in Seoul didn't have pita bread! So disappointing! Afterwards we went to my favorite bookstore and I traded in my old books and picked out some new ones. After an hour shopping at a market in Itaewon, I was ready to go home and get into my Hello Kitty PJs. Now I'm off to make some more progress on that hideous purple sweater!

Friday, August 31, 2007

Profile Pics!

Well, I finally got my profile pics! I have a whole lot of pictures on a DVD...I mean, a lot. And most of them are not that good -- not the photographer's fault. I've never had a lot of pictures taken of me, especially close up, so a lot of the pictures look a little awkard. Oh well, out of the bunch, I think there's a handful that are quite good. It certainly was an interesting experience. Now if these pictures can help me make a few more won ($), I'll be a happy girl.

Now I'm just gearing up for a very busy weekend. Teaching tomorrow morning, meeting Meg for lunch and shopping, and then off to the in-laws for dinner. Sunday morning teaching, meeting Whitney for lunch, shopping, and then hopefully I can crash and watch a movie!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

European Cafes only serve Maxim instant coffee

I agreed to do a commercial for Maxim Coffee on Monday, mostly 'cause the price was right. I'll have to make up the day I took off by working Saturday, and that'll hurt, but hey, Sejin and I can use the extra money, especially since we plan on moving in February.
The night before, I was told in an email what kind of wardrobe to bring to the shoot: European autumn cafe chic. Also included in the email was a picture of Jennifer Aniston in a gorgeous blouse and expensive leather bag. So I hauled half my wardrobe to Sinsa Station, hoping something in my bag qualified as European autumn cafe chic. It turned out to be for nothing. Oh well.

The shoot went a lot like all the other TV things I've done -- arrive early in the morning, wait around for a long time, get ushered into a room where your hair and makeup is done, get changed, wait around for a lot longer, shoot 10,000 takes of the same scene 'til your mouth hurts from smiling. The only thing different this time was that they spraypainted my hair bright red. When I asked them why they wanted to change the colour of my hair, they said that they wanted to make it clear who the Koreans and who the foreigners were. Ooookay. I didn't really care until I had to wash my hair about five times that night before all the red stuff rinsed out.

Anyway, the shoot was relatively uneventful. I got to sit and chat over an empty cup of coffee with my friend Amy. I got to meet and have my picture taken with Korean acting legend Ahn Sunggi. All in all, it was a good day and more importantly, it was very easy money!

A few photos...The set, which is an exact copy of a Van Gogh painting

Ahn Sunggi and IAmy and IMichael and IHopefully I'll have a few more of these gigs coming my way in the next couple of months!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Yet another WIP

I have no right to start a new project, but I've been itching to use the beautiful bamboo yarn I bought in Turkey. So I finally settled, surprisingly, on the bunny hop camisole. I don't know why I chose this pattern because it doesn't seem popular at all, but something about it struck me. Hey, if it doesn't work out, I just rip it out and try another pattern. Here's the progress after only four days of knitting. Maybe I'll even have this one done in time to wear it in the fall!

Time to relax with a cold drink and look at all my purchases from today. I was all over Seoul today with Whitney. Namdaemun was great because I haven't been there in so long. I got a beautiful silk covered jewelry box for $25! And a hand-crocheted table cloth for $20! It's days like this that I love living in this big crazy city!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Waiting, waiting, waiting

Jenn's been on her way to Seoul for over 6 hours! It's vacation week here in Korea, and while I presumed everyone would be leaving Seoul for vacation, apparently everyone is coming to Seoul. If I would have known about it, I would have told her to come another weekend! We had planned to go for dinner and go shopping Dongdaemun, but instead it's 1:21 a.m. and I'm trying to stay awake so I can let her in when she arrives!

Well, at least I did something somewhat productive while I was waiting....I made a case for my sunglasses, which I've been meaning to do for some time.

Well, I guess I'll watch TV 'til she arrives. I'm too tired to do any more knitting or reading!