Friday, August 31, 2012

Rainy week in Seoul

This week has been somewhat uneventful. Well, we've had two typhoons and August *might* be potty trained, but it's been pretty routine overall.

This guy spilled eggs all over the floor tonight.

But seriously, who minds cleaning up egg goo when you're not changing diapers?

As you know Tuesday we had typhoon Bolaven which was pretty blah here. Thursday we got hit with another: Typhoon Temblin, which was a tropical storm by the time it got here. School wasn't cancelled for Temblin, but it certainly rained more. 

Below are all three children walking home from the bus stop after school (We get picked up right outside our apartment, but get dropped off a ten minute walk away in the afternoon) We told the girls to let go of the umbrella if the wind takes it after Ruby nearly got pulled into the road holding onto an inside out umbrella!

August got tired of walking close to his sister right after this picture was taken and decided he'd rather get soaking wet.

Today the weather was perfect! Somewhere around 70 and sunny! 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Typhoon Day, Part II: Afternoon/Evening: Eh

Well, I got all excited over nothing. Just a windy day with a little bit of rain. This afternoon was no different from this morning.
Since the kids were bouncing off the walls Amy and I took them to the LIttle Prince Kid's Cafe.


Jesse is so excited to show August the train

The subway has reserved seats for these people. I consider myself in the final category-but throw a few more kids on that stick-lady

If you look closely, that is NOT Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct. I have no idea what that ad is for
 We took the subway two stops, went out the wrong exit  out of the subway and had to cut through the Lotte department store to get to the other side.  Check out the sharp looking info desk ladies.

The information I need? Where to get a hat like that! (Zing!)

Burt's Bees is considered fancy here. I don't get it. It has it's own counter next to Clinique and my fav, Bobbi Brown

Outside the department store. The Men's Hair Shop

 More coffee at the Little Prince Cafe...I'm never going to sleep tonight.

 In order to get the kids to leave the kid's cafe, we bribed them with dinner at McDonald's. This is by far the least efficient McDonald's I have ever been to. The first time we went there, half of the burgers were served without meat. The line is insane and they seem to make the orders as they come in. You might like fresh things, but I prefer things pre-heated and fast, OK? That's the McDonald's way. This time they forgot all the food parts of our order. I collected the drinks as they came out. They piled up food on Amy's tray and that was it. I took my receipt over and they said all the food was on Amy's tray. I showed them that it was not there and we got our food. You'll never guess what I ordered. Especially if you've never been to Korea. I ordered a bulgogi burger. Bulgogi is a sauce with beef or something. I love it at Korean bbq places.
Wondering about those numbers? The large one is the price as in 4700 won (about $4.50) and the one below it is the calories....778

The McDonald's bulgogi burger was very strange. It was a meat-like patty (very unnatural-I've never had a McRibb, but I'm wondering if this is in the same meat class as that) covered in bulgogi sauce. I accidentally ordered a double-for the love of humanity!- and the two patties were stuck together with a piece of cheese. Lettuce and mayo on the top. Regular McDonald's bun. It was great to try it, but I won't order it again and I don't recommend it for you.

 McDonald's delivers-just like every other place. This way you don't have to wait in line for your order of anything other than the bulgogi burger.

After we got home, I still needed to run to the market because we're out of peanut butter and that is a staple in the Farley household. I thought I'd show you a picture of the foregin foods section at the Lotte Super near GMH.

That's right-$15 syrup....Hershey's cocoa....baked beans...Campbell's soup....maraschino cherries...horseradish...

Typhoon Day, Part I: The Morning: Eh

Well, we're home for Typhoon Day. School was cancelled (in advance!) because of Typhoon Bolaven.
Seoul is somewhere in that picture. But if we didn't know better, we'd say it's just a breezy day. It's still early.
View from our apartment
 The best part about the typhoon day is that I got to virtually go out with some girls back in Denver! Normally we go out about every 2 months or so. And this morning (or as they would say "tonight") they went out for HANNAH'S BIRTHDAY and I was able to join them via google hangout.
I didn't get to eat any of the chips and salsa, but, on the bright side, I didn't have to get out of my pjs
Here I am in Denver
After celebrating with Hannah, Leigh and Steph, I called Amy to see if she wanted to go out for a coffee-like I had to ask! She also has kids our kids age (just not as many). Mia, who is in Ruby's class and Jesse, who is August's best friend.
Our children, enjoying a movie day. Here they are watching 101 Dalmations
We went to a place called Mamagato
Caramel Machiato

The caramel is all in the bottom and you mix it up!

It comes with this little stir stick
Where IS that typhoon?!
As we sat in Mamagato, Amy noticed a sign for a "Book Cafe" across the street. In Korea, stores go all the way up and they place the signs high up on the building where they are located, so you need to look up or you can miss something. The sign for the book cafe was up on the 3rd floor.
We went up to the book cafe, but only found a place with some tables, one shelf of Korean books and this guy.
Look at this lady. Typhoon won't stop her.
We walked back to GMH and I went in through Amy's building and took the underground passage (parking garage) to my building so I didn't have to battle the wind.
 I'll keep you posted about this, but Jim and I aren't sure at this point if the storm is going to just graze us or if it's going to hit Yongin.
One more thing I think I should share today. Last night was Back to School Night. I peeked inside Grace's journal.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Addendum to Saturday couch shopping

Remember Grace wanted to buy this exercise machine?
Here's our friend, Adam, demonstrating how to use it.
Makes more sense now, doesn't it? Maybe not.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Back to Itaewon to check out the book store

I have heard a lot about What the Book, an English book store with new and used books. We didn't have any plans today (well, Jim had to do some work) but the kids and I didn't have any plans, so the girls and I went out!
Look what we found outside of Miegum station! Miegum is the station right up the road. How do they know about Denver?!
 Right after seeing this sweatshirt, the strap on Grace's dress broke. Just as we were passing a table selling sewing supplies.  What kind of Jedi mind trick was this guy up to?
Perfect fix-it kit for 1,000won. I sewed up Grace's dress on the subway
We took the subway to get to Iteawon again. There's a bus that will get us there in about 25 minutes, but I haven't figured that out yet. So in the mean time, we take the subway. We take a total of 4 trains there and 4 trains back and it takes about an hour each way. But hey, when you want to go to a bookstore, you do what you can to get there, right? And again, when I stopped to read a subway map to make sure we were getting on the right train, another very friendly, bi-lingual Korean woman stopped and asked me if I needed any help. Koreans are seriously nice people.

Here's What the Book. I ended up getting a few books for me, a few for Jim and a few for the kids. I found the Fall Fashion issue of InStyle!
We were hungry and thristy and hot so we ended up at the same cafe we went to last time and ate almost the same food (but this time I had a grilled ham, cheese and egg sandwich).
Here's what Itaewon looks like

Above is an information guy. These information people are everywhere in Itaewon. This guy was able to tell me where I could find Etude House (makeup store pronounced Eh-too-duh House).

After our brief trip to Etude House (I hope you're pronouncing it correctly in your head as you're reading this), we went back to the subway. This station (I can't remember which one it is) has an entrance for little kids. Kids 6 and under ride the subway for free. I haven't figured out how to get them a card for this (I think we need our alien registration number first) so I usually cram them in the turn thingy with me, with moderate success. 

At the Jeonga Station, there is a Daiso (dollar store)! I stocked up on Typhoon-readiness supplies.
 I got flashlights, batteries, candles and a lighter.

Every other Sunday, the larger chain stores close. This is (from what I've heard) a regulation from the government so that there is more foot traffic for the smaller mom and pop grocery stores. So today emart and Costco were closed, and I think Homeplus might have been too. I didn't get a chance to go yesterday, so I had to get supplies at the Diaso and at the small grocery across from GMH (but they deliver!). Anyway, I was there, waiting in line to check out and guess who walked in?! Joseph! Remember Joseph and his wife drove to Kim's Club a few weeks ago just to pick me up because it was raining and they were worried about me on the bus? I was so happy to see him. I asked for his email address. He gave me his business card and said he was headed back in to work-this was at about 8:30pm. I was reading his business card on the way home. Now, I don't want to breach any security, but his business card said "Office of the President, Republic of Korea" at the top. I'm thinking Joseph is a good guy to know-he'll pick you up in the rain, he works for the president...

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Saturday, looking for a couch...

Last night I went to the neighbor's for a small get together. And guess what?! They had the SAME couch and love seat that we have in Denver. You know our sofa? Super comfy, deep, nice to sleep on when you're sick (or any time)? They had it! They explained to me that they bought it at a used furniture place and that those places are kind of hit or miss. Since you've been reading the blog faithfully, you know that I've checked out the used furniture place south of here. Well the one they went to was North, and Tim offered to take me there. We don't really need a new couch, but we got the new tv last week and it would be nice to lounge.
Jim was out playing screen golf (he can talk about that later), so we loaded the Farley's in Tim's car, and Tara and Justin followed behind in their car.
Look at that! A car seat for August!
We drove North-ish for about 20 minutes and came to a neighborhood somewhere close to my school.

We knew where the store was because this sweet couch was sitting out front.
For the most part, the selection on couches was lacking.

I did find this fantastic chair, but it was $150 and I wasn't ready to pay that for a chair right now.
The owner of the shop pulled us over to the counter and showed us that he has a second store (with more couches). He gave Tim directions.
Grace really wanted to buy this exercise machine
We got back in Tim's car and went off to the second store....except that we couldn't find it. Tim is certainly persistent though. We stopped for directions THREE times!
when we stopped in at a real estate office to ask for directions, Sean came over to the car and chatted with the kids

We stopped at a mechanic. Look at the guard puppy!

Then we stopped at a gas station.

We had to have been close. Basically each time we stopped it was described as being on the road that we were on and very close to where we were, but we just never found it.
By the time we got home, I was starving and this flier was taped to our door. I dropped off the kids with Jim (back from 5 hours of screen golf) and went to the dong (neighborhood).

Our Dong

looking the other direction on the same street
I stopped someone on the street and showed him my flier and asked where Good Morning Chicken was. He told me-in English- that it's just delivery. You have to call the number. I have a phone, but I don't speak enough Korean to actually order any food. So I went to the same chicken place we went to last week.
Then, probably because I was too hungry, I stopped at the pizza place so the kids could have pizza and leave my chicken alone.
This is the pizza place we order from, the crust has a green tint to it, so it must be healthy
I stopped at both of these places, paid, wrote my building and apartment number down on a piece of paper and went home. Soon after I got home, our pizza and chicken were delivered.

So delicious. We ate, then settled in around the new tv to watch more Kpop videos. We're trying to educate ourselves on something other than just Psy.
This is 2NE1 on our tv (nice quality for the generic emart tv)

Here's the video for you to enjoy in it's entirety.