Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Korea video--Galbi with Mr. Ha

Here's the first of the Korea videos. I've decided I'm going to post Korean stuff on Tuesdays (for 한국 화요일).

While Doug and I were teaching English in Cheonan (in '96-'97, right after we got married) Doug took a kumdo class. Kumdo is what's called kendo in Japan--the fencing with bundled-bamboo practice swords. I went along at first to help translate (and came down with a case of kumdo elbow after doing the quick head strike 500 times). After we started actually hitting each other I stopped going.

In the class was Mr. Ha, a forty-ish restaurant owner with two kids. His full name is 하종률, which I think he romanizes as Ha Jong Yul. (Or something like that. Though the last syllable is really more like "nyool.") He spoke absolutely no English at all, but he and Doug managed to communicate well enough in their classes, and he would give Doug a ride home afterward.

Mr. Ha fed us at his restaurant a few times. On New Year's Day we went over to the restaurant and ate, and then went with him and his family over to his brother's house and ate more. We spent the evening eating, playing yut nori, eating, singing (we still have the song book they gave us), and eating. We had a wonderful time and went home completely stuffed at 1:00 in the morning.

In the weeks before we left Korea, we were able to go back to Mr. Ha's restaurant with a borrowed video camera, and record the experience for posterity.

(If you watch it at youtube the picture is bigger.) You only see Mr. Ha for a couple of seconds. I wish we had gotten more of him. It was also pretty noisy, so you may not be able to catch everything. (I could add subtitles... should I do that?)

Mr. Ha was unusual among our acquaintances, being not someone we knew from church or someone who wanted to practice English, but just a regular, nice guy. We kept in touch after we went to Newfoundland, exchanging letters a few times. In one letter he mentioned that he had sold the meat restaurant and started another place. The whole economy at the time was not doing very well, and it sounded like they might be having some trouble.

I sent Mr. Ha one of the cards that I made for the lunar new year, and it came back. I had no idea how I might find him, since he's not LDS and I couldn't use the same channels that I used to track some other friends down. Then Sister O'Bryan, whose blog I've been following, got transferred to Cheonan. I thought, "Hmmm, maybe she'd be able to find him somehow." So I sent her an email, giving her the information that I had. And then I thought, "Hmmm, I should try googling again." (I had tried this before, inconclusively.) So I googled 하종률 천안 and up popped this site. It's a restaurant in Cheonan. With owner Ha Jong Yul. And a phone number. I thought, "How many restaurateurs named Ha Jong Yul in Cheonan could there be?" (And I totally had to look up how to spell "restaurateur.")

It was way too early to try calling. I had to wait till evening, when it was about 9:00 am in Korea. Then I called the number on the site, and it was Mr. Ha! He was so surprised. Just completely gobsmacked. It was so awesome. I got his email, and we exchanged further news. He sent some recent family pictures. His kids are 20 and 22 now. The new restaurant is actually a fugu place. (Ooh, fancy!) He said he's also studying hotel management. Maybe he'll start a hotel and then we can go visit. Wheeee!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Andy at 15 months

Taken today! Check out those scrapes and bruises. He's a busy boy. Today he figured out how to climb onto the kitchen chairs. He wanted to continue his ascent onto the kitchen table, but was thwarted in the attempt.

I couldn't decide between these two pictures, so I just included both of them.

Kate was saying twenty or so words at 15 months. (I hear girls often start talking sooner.) Andy pretty much just says "hi." The other day Doug's cell phone rang, and Andy put his hand up to his ear and said, "Hi!" That was so cute. He's doing signs for "more," "all done," and "milk," and he understands things like "lie down" and "you want a bath?" He also likes to sit and look at books by himself. He'll turn the pages and say "dooka dooka dooka" over and over.

Andy is such a happy little guy and so fun to have around!

Friday, March 26, 2010

How to Draw Your Dragon

Kate has been very interested in How to Train Your Dragon, which we just found out about a few weeks ago when Doug ran across this game. She's learned all the different kinds of dragons, and has them in rotation as to which one she's pretending to be. She's also been drawing them quite a lot.

That's Kate with a sword, and two dragons fighting.

And here Kate is taking care of the dragons.

She's very excited about going to see the movie tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I've been eagerly awaiting this package. I sent our 8mm videos from Korea to HD Media Services in Portland to be put on DVD, and they arrived back today. Hooray! Doug and I have been watching some of them. (We look so young....)

I mentioned earlier that watching these videos on the TV makes me nauseated, because of the hand-held camera shake. I figured that getting the footage digitized would enable us to split it up into shorter (youtube-able!) chunks, and make for an easier viewing experience. If I can figure out how to do that. We do have Windows Movie Maker, but I haven't tried anything with it yet. Hopefully I'll have something to share in a few days!

I've had this in the back of my mind as one of those get-around-to-it-someday things. It feels great to finally get it done. I also sent my mission negatives in to ScanCafe. (Those will take longer to come back). I was impressed with ScanCafe's system. HD Media Services has been a pleasure to work with as well. I suggested to my mom that they should send in our old home videos that have been watched to death and crinkled in places, and see if they can salvage anything. It would be great to see those again.

Edit: I just wanted to add that I'm very happy with everything. They included both WMV and MPEG4 files. I didn't have much trouble figuring out Windows Movie Maker, and I've already started putting together short movies. Yay!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Vernal Equinox

The first day of spring was lovely. I wanted to go out and take pictures of flowers, so I took Kate and Andy and went to Point Defiance. We got kind of a late start because Andy decided to take a really long nap, so we didn't get out there till about 5:00. (The light was probably better then, anyway. It was really sunny earlier.) Doug stayed home to grade papers.

Kate and Andy check out the daffodils.

(And other things.)

A nice lady offered to get a picture of the three of us together.

The attempt was amusing.

After that Kate wanted to go over to the duck pond.

She spotted these two redheaded widgeons in the crowd. We thought they were cool.

I think these signs are new. (Comma splice!) There were so many people there feeding the ducks. There were entire slices of bread floating whole and uneaten in the shallows, bobbing forlornly against the rocks.

I've always liked this tree. It's just so knobbly and interesting.

Next we had to stop by the Japanese garden.

These trees are just gorgeous every year.

Finally--on to the playground!

Andy on the swing.

It's hard to get a shot like this in focus!

Andy back at the car. "Nooooo! I don't want to go!"


Today is quite a bit cooler, and spitting rain intermittently. I'm glad we got out yesterday! Ah, spring!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Rose and Juan

Rose and Juan were married at the Soundview Ward chapel on February 12th.  Rose was looking for someone to take pictures, and a mutual friend asked me if I'd be able to do it.  It took me a month, with all the other stuff we had going on, to get all the pictures processed, a few more days to get ahold of Rose after that, and then a few more days to get these posted on my blog.  I know Laura wanted to see them, so I thought I'd just share a few here.

I borrowed Larry Golden's wide-angle lens and his external flash.  I ended up using them about half the time, and my 50mm with no flash on a higher ISO the other half.  I knew the lighting was going to be tricky.

At the end of the ceremony, Rose and Juan jumped over a broom (with everyone's flashes going off).

The group shots were a big exuberant mess.  There's something about that second shot that just makes me smile.


...and cake!


It was a wonderful, happy evening. I enjoyed meeting Rose and Juan and their families. Best wishes to the happy couple!