Back to the blog...it's been a little while! I've got some thoughts, stories, and a video for you to (hopefully) enjoy!
The last few weeks have been filled with some extra activities. A week ago was our staff retreat - a weekend getaway for both the foreign and the Thai staff at our school. We went to Pattaya, a beach area a couple of hours away from where we live. If you've seen pictures of beaches in Thailand, you've probably NOT seen pictures of Pattaya, or, at least, the area where we were at. It's not exactly the nicest beach in Thailand, but we still have fun there. We spent some time playing games and getting to know everyone's name; believe it or not, that was super helpful! The foreign and Thai staff at our school tend to be a little hesitant to talk to one another, but learning everyone's names really helped that out. We went out for lunch one day at a revolving restaurant - the food was delicious and we got to see some wonderful views of the area! The best part of that lunch was going back down the tower - at the top, there is a zipline that carries you down all 56 stories to the ground! Michael and I chose to take a slightly different route - not the zipline, but something similar, made for two people to go down at once. Check out the video at the end of the post to see what that was like!
Another recent event was the talent show. That was this weekend, and it was a big hit! Lots of students participated, lots of parents showed up, and pretty much everyone had some fun. The 12th grade students put together a fundraiser, which happened before and during the talent show. They are raising money to take a senior trip at the end of the year. I'm pretty excited about this - mostly because if they raise enough money, I get to go on the trip as their chaperone. :) They've been doing a great job of coming up with ideas, putting in the time and effort to do fundraisers and plan for the trip, etc. Hopefully this year it will work out!
The end of our first semester is approaching quickly - three weeks until grades are due, four weeks until October break! Michael and I have been spending a lot of time catching up on work, planning ahead, and making exams for the students to take in the coming weeks. Someone at church today asked me how school was going, and I said, "It's busy!" - she responded, "When isn't school busy for you?" I guess "busy" is my standard answer for that question. It's true though; school never stops being busy.
Michael and I have both taken on some extra tutoring jobs this year, which is something completely new for me. Michael did a little tutoring last year, and he's tutoring the same little girl this year. I'm working with a couple of my high school students as well as a fourth grade girl. Having a half hour of tutoring after school, twice a week, with a student who is of a different age and grade level than I'm used to teaching is actually sort of refreshing. I really enjoy the little time I spend reading with her.
Anyway, there isn't much else going on in terms of news. We do want to thank you for your thoughts and prayers. We've received some extra encouragement in the last few weeks, and it reminds us that although we are far away from you, our family and friends, that doesn't mean that we are forgotten. Please continue to pray for us. God is so good to give us what we need when we need it, and I am confident that whatever difficulties we will face in the future, he will provide us with the means to make it through. He has already given us the blessing of his Spirit, and we know that that Spirit is at work within and around us.
Thanks again. :) Please enjoy the following video, taken at Pattaya. It's a little silly, and may or may not involve some singing.