Thursday, January 2, 2014

New Years Celebrations and Baking :)

Happy New Years!!

Not going to lie, this was the first year in maybe 6 years where I had a relaxed, sober New Years. I went to dinner and then went to see a movie. My first movie theater experience  in China!

The theater was pretty small and tickets were only $3.50. The theater only had 5 movies showing, and only one of them was in English--it was about a terrorist attack in America (not going to lie, nightmares ensued).

I got in touch with a few family and friends, had a big glass of wine, and watched another movie to end my 2013. With only one day off school I just wanted to relax.

I got a call early the next morning to tell me that another packaged had arrived for me--christmas present part two from home :)

Here are some of the goodies--all things that are hard to find (or non existent) here in China

Spice packets and flavoring

pretzels! these are impossible to find here

flavored tea! AMAZING. 

more cookies--you can find cake mix and chocolate frosting here for about $6 each 

TUNA! I never remember liking tuna but these packets are AMAZING. They sell canned tuna here for about $2.50 but it is in sunflower oil which I would never buy. 

Corn muffin mix!

Wax paper--I have not found this ANYWHERE here. In order to bake cookies I was very close to going to a bakery and seeing what they use

Red solo cups…ha thanks mom :)

Check out that return label! (I wonder if these are stashed in the back corner and only used on mail to me…?)

New Years Day I got out of my house and to the gym--which was surprisingly empty. 

After I worked out, I decided to bake some cookies now that I have wax paper--

After I decided my new years resolution would be to use my time more efficiently instead of booking hotels for my upcoming vacation, preparing my class or final review guide for the next day, cleaning, or about 50 other things I should have been doing…

I decided to make cute little bags with cookies in them for everyone in my office. 

New Years Resolution #1 broken already. got to redeem myself!

Not to mention I had a few cookies here and there--New Years healthy eating plan broken. 

I guess I will consider the 1st my "day off"

Some more pictures around Jinan…

These are some of the chalkboards near the BBall court on campus--they are always beautifully decorated

They all have to do with christmas and new years--kids here really love japanese anime, you can see that through their drawings

A new balloon display at the mall 

Finally--the Senior 3 students took finals this week. After their attendance all semester was on and off (college apps, SAT studying and taking the SAT in Hong Kong gave them the option to come to school whenever they pleased.) 

I had to help proctor the AP English Exam--check out the instructions. 

After 45 minutes (1/2 through) of taking the test the teacher read through the rules, basically telling them they only have to do half the exam for full credit. 

Not trying to trick them or anything (who reads the instructions on a final test?) 

Haha--my coworkers always make me laugh

Tomorrow bright and early I have to proctor the Spanish test. Mehhh. 

Next week I will give my Senior 1's their final--one part of class is a final, the other half is a project where they have to write a play or a song about one topic we have learned. They are getting pretty into it so it will be fun to see their finished projects!

Tomorrow is my last day of content then next week is alllllll review! A little time to get things together before traveling with my mom over the next few weeks! 

(And getting my cavity fixed--EEK. I hate dentists. The thought of seeing a chinese dentist is terrifying. But my filling broke over a cavity and I have been taking IB profen excessively--last night I had a pretty sleepless night in pain so I decided its time to get it over with.--I have literally been thinking about the scene in castaway when tom hanks removes his own tooth.)

Ending with a quote. Heres to 2014! 

Since I've been in China i have noticed that instead of caring what other people think of me when i walk into a room of new people, I wonder instead what I think of these new people. Maybe thats because a wide variety of people are crazy or brave enough to come to china, but I find myself being a lot more selective about who i like to spend time with. 
(A little ending reflection) 

Go Buckeyes! :) 

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