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On this coldest day in December...



From what my friend tells me this is the coldest day in December that Korea has seen in 27 years. That not only made my eyebrows raise but at the same time give me chills. Temperatures in the teens usually doesn't come around till January. But it looks like things will "warm" up next week, a bit.

To beat the cold my friend and I enjoyed watching a movie and TV in the comfort of my warm home. For dinner we had homemade bulgolgi and japchae, with lettuce for wraps. It was a warming meal and also quite wholesome.

Lentil Soup Dinner

Throw some of this stuff together, and chop up some vegetables....

It’s your party, but please learn to hike first.

With about 70% of the Korean peninsula covered with mountains, the hiking culture dominates the the Land of Kimchi. I went for a short hike up Mt. Dobongsan near my home a few weeks ago. I have a ways to go if I want to start calling myself a “hiker”, but here are my thoughts thus far…

Hiking in Korea is reminiscent of attending an epic college party.

It is imperative that you…

pre-game. (Who wants some morning makgeolli?)


Pancake Thanksgiving


My Favorite Restaurant: 서울깍두기 in 남포동

Seolleongtang, my favorite!
Seoul Kkakdugi (서울깍두기) in Nampo-dong (남포동) is my favorite restaurant in Busan.  There are a few locations around town, but I always go to the one near my house.  Just a 5 minute bus ride and I'm there.  They serve a small menu of soups including Galbitang and my favorite - Seolleongtang.

Coffee Break

 


Kombucha in Busan

I looked for Kombucha in Busan for a couple months, but I had no luck finding anybody who was brewing it.  I finally ordered a starter from the USA and it's growing nicely.  If anyone needs a starter mushroom, just send me a message with your email or phone number.  I live in Gwangan and work near Seomyeon.  I'm excited to finally be making Kombucha and I want others to enjoy it too!


Sucking It Up

A few weeks ago was October’s Birthday Party for our Kindergarten classes, and this coming Friday will be November’s Birthday Party.  This means lots of pictures, fried chicken and kimbap for lunch, Birthday cake, and a ceiling full of balloons.


A Week in Photos #8

 


Dear Korea #077 - A Lesson in Moderation

Dear Korea #077

Yay for a new comic! Also, yay for Pepero Day (even though it was technically yesterday)!

For those of you that don’t know what 빼빼로 (pepero) is, it’s basically a cookie stick dipped in chocolate. Many of you might be more famiiar with the Japanese version of the same snack, which is known as Pocky.


Snacks

When I go to new countries, I love wandering around their convenience stores or supermarkets.  I love seeing what people eat and what kind of snacks they enjoy.  I especially love the snacks that are ‘weird’, or at least new and different to what I’m used to.


Free Food Madness

One of the things my husband and I enjoy every time we shop for groceries in Korea is the free food.


Disappointed over Durian

This year’s Philippine vacation, the first thing that my husband looked for was durian. He had never tried the fruit and he was very curious about it.


Candy corn in Busan?

Does anyone know where candy corn can be found in Busan?  


How I Celebrated my 31st and 4th Birthday in Korea


With good food and great friends, that is how you have a wonderful 31st birthday in Korea. Not to mention that it was on Chuseok and I spent the earlier part of the day enjoying the traditions Korea had to offer.

Dear Korea Happy Chuseok

Dear Korea Happy Chuseok

Just stopping by to wish everyone here in Korea a great holiday! Enjoy your noms and have lots of fun! I’ll be taking over Seoul this weekend.

There will be a comic on Monday, so keep an eye out for it!


Fall is Near

I am not one to frequent coffee shops, but this past weekend I found myself in a Starbucks.  While there I can happily report that our Corporate Overseers have since announced the impending Arrival of Fall to Korea.

Now there isn’t any of the infamous “Pumpkin Spice” aroma in the air, but there is a nice Salted Caramel flavor, that here in Korea is being called “Sweet and Salty”.

Now I don’t know if I just didn’t stalk Starbucks enough my first year here, or if Korea is finally catching on to the flavors of fall, but either way it’s quite tasty.
Now if only I could get some good apple cider.

From Busan with Autumnal Love,
Jenna


5 Awesomely Awesome Things: The Very Merry unBirthday Edition

Now before this gets confusing it’s not my Birthday, that was a few months ago.  Even though it wasn’t my Birthday, this past week it was 3 of my co-worker’s Birthdays in the span of only two days.  Needless to say I’ve had Birthdays on the brain, which is fine.

I love Birthdays.  So here are some things I find Awesomely Awesome about them.

 

1. Mail: 

I love Mail!  I love getting cards and letters and bits of awesomeness to brighten my day and adorn my walls.  Birthdays mean mail and especially far from home, they are that much more special.  Seriously, if you ever need to win me over, send me a card.  If you send me a package, I’ll love you forever.  Did I mention I like mail?


Life’s Short, Eat Dessert First.

My Grandma used to tell me this, and when I was in Osaka I totally listened.
My last night in Japan I was wondering around Osaka after checking into my hostel looking for a place to eat.  It was one of those times that there was so much selection that nothing in particular sounded good.
As I was walking down one random street, I found this little bakery tucked away.

Inside was this cool young dude who I found out is the owner and creator of all of the stores delicious treats.  I was hungry and it looked super good so I dove into vacation mode and had my dessert first.


Long grain rice

Hi everyone. Can anyone share where to get long grain rice in Busan?  Homeplus definitely don't have as far as I'm concerned.


Once Upon a Time…

…in the not so distant past, in the land of South Korea, Oreos were a mere figment of a foreigner’s imagination.  It was a dark time where Oreos had to be obtained in care packages from home, visits to other countries, or succumbing to eating Cameos- Oreo knockoffs.

 

Little did I know that upon my return to South Korea, Oreos would be plentiful sitting on store shelves as if they had been there with the rest of America’s food imperialism for years.   Even though you can’t find my personal favorites Golden Oreos (sad), or Double Stuffed (double sad), more than just plain Oreos are available.

Today I found these:


Goodbyes



I've always been rubbish at saying goodbye so this morning was not easy at all, especially as it was so early and I had just dragged myself out of bed to see my mum and Julie one last time. I'll post more about our trip tomorrow.

I was slightly cheered up by the phone call I got twenty minutes later from my mum laughing at the taxi driver as he serenaded them on their way to the airport. Oh Korea!

Some Nights…

Some nights in Korea it feels like you’ve been here for years and not much could phase you, let alone shock or surprise you.

Other nights, as you’re walking home with a friend from the Cat Cafe you take pictures with anthropomorphized alcohol!

Another thing I love is that in Korea, the person in the suit not only speaks great English, but also watches your bike for you while you try to win a little bottle of soju and instead win a packet of wet wipes.


Bar Review: Prince Izakaya (프린스)

Located at the foot of Hooker Hill, I've been wanting to go to Prince for ages but never was able to make time (or get a table). I finally made it on Friday with a group of friends and had a gay old time.


Sushi Boats and Trains

I have really big news and some major changes to announce later in the week.  I really can’t wait to share, but just a few more days.  Until then, I present another taste of Japan.
The last meal I ate in Japan may have been one of the more stereotypically Japanese, or at least one of the more expected meals- Conveyor Belt Sushi.

I had a lot of time at the airport and figured nothing would be better than leaving Japan with a belly full of sushi.  Plus who doesn’t like food delivered to you on a little train?


Lunchbox

I love cooking. Sometimes I cook too much food that my husband and I can’t finish. Instead of letting the food spoil or keeping it in the fridge for days, I sometimes give the rest of it to my husband’s brothers or friends who live nearby.


What I Ate in Damyang


While in Damyang I did my best to eat the local specialities. If you recall I was treated to some bamboo bread on my first arrival. After I ventured through the bamboo forest I was hot and wanted something to eat. So I walked around the city area of the town and found a mul naengmyeon restaurant (물 냉면).

Hummus Heaven at High Street Market

buns resized 600

“You look like you could use an almond milk coffee smoothie with real mint chocolate bits,” the man behind the counter caught me off-guard as I stood at the entrance of the store wide-eyed and drooling. “I can make it for you now and you can enjoy it while you shop.” I nodded, unable to verbalize my gratitude. “Did he just read my mind?” I thought. Maybe he did, or maybe he just saw me for the sucker that I am, regardless, the drink was beyond amazing and I couldn’t help but make a few annoying slurping sounds with my straw as I managed to enjoy each bit of the almond milk deliciousness as I browsed all that High Street Market had to offer.


all better

image

Forget everything I said in that last post, Dominos is in the house.


5 Awesomely Awesome Things: Nampo Edition

This weekend I went down to Nampo-Dong with one of my co-workers for some shopping, cupcakes, and reminiscing through my old stomping grounds.  So today’s Awesomely Awesome Things is inspired by the trip.

1. My Old Korean Home! 
           I loved living on Yeongdo!  I had never lived on an island before and I really got a good one.   Yes there were times I wished I lived closer to more popular parts of town, but for my first year in Korea, I wouldn’t have changed it for the world.  While I didn’t end  up going over to the island this weekend, I did go up to the rooftop garden/skydeck at the Lotte Department Store down in Nampo-dong and got to see my apartment, my old school, and my mountain.


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