Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Running Tip Tuesday {My Confession of Going No 'poo}

This is not so much about running as it is my hair :)  But still useful to crunchy runners.

Things that you need to know before reading this: Shampoo is expensive in Korea.  There is no one-dollar bottles of Sauve.  A bottle of shampoo here is 9 US dollars (or more).  And I am frugal.  So I was convinced that we could buy one bottle of shampoo and have it last us an entire year. 

I realized that the shampoo was not going to make it an entire year, so around November (when I was taking some time off after running a half marathon) I decided to try going "no 'poo".  Basically you wash your hair with baking soda instead of shampoo.  (Baking soda is way cheaper than shampoo! Oh yeah, we fly out in 14 days and we (by we I mean Ian) is/are still using the same bottle of shampoo that we started with last August!  Success!)

This is the thing about washing your hair with baking soda.  You are only supposed to do it once every 3 days.  Let me repeat: once.every. three. days.

Ya'll!  I run 6 days a week!  I get hot and sweaty when I run (including my scalp/hair!).

So this is my awesome/amazing solution to how to run on a daily basis and not wash your hair every single time:
Day 1: Run.  Shower.  Wash Hair.  Wear hair down.
Day 2: Run.  Shower.  Rinse Hair with only water.  Wear hair half up/half down (unless it is Saturday, then wear it in a messy bun)
Day 3: Run. Shower.  Rinse Hair with Water.  Wear hair in a ponytail.  
Day 4 = Day 1

Ta-dah!  I don't know if this will work for ya'll, but it works for me and my hair.  I have been doing it for 9 or 10 months pretty successfully. Yes, I am a low maintenance person.  Yes, my hair is probably a different texture, length, thickness, etc than yours...but if you want to run (or exercise) and give no 'poo a try, you can do it.

So do some reading, think about it, if it seems good to you, go for it.

For my sake, does anyone else have any hippie/crunchy confessions to make? :-)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

School is Out for the Summer {finally. sigh}

Today was the last day of the official semester.  Praise the Lord!  (btw, I am attempting to type this blog post in under two minutes.)

I think this is from last year during open class.

Tomorrow is the first day of Summer English Camp, which means that I will still be teaching.  So not a huge difference, but we are getting closer to the end!  

Running Tip Tuesday {July Edition}

I am going to guess that even if you are not a runner, you can identify with some part of this post.

So we have to start with a story: I run quite a bit (maybe 6 days a week).  And I don't run just for fun.  I time my runs.  I measure my runs.  I do math in my brain while I am running about how far I have run and how my mile (1600 meters) splits are.
A few weeks ago, I realized that some of my runs were a bit sluggish - not a big deal.  I am all about letting my body run slow if it wants to.  But then it was becoming that all of my runs were slower than they should be (for the sake of this post, let's not delve into "slower" and "should be"... roll with me folks).  I was getting really frustrated with myself.  I was starting to feel shame about how slow some of my runs were.

And then I went running and had a spiritual crisis (kinda, I can be dramatic).

This is what I realized.

Running at a certain pace (9 minute miles on recovery days) had become an idol in my life.

Auto-kay (in case you don't live in Korea that translates as "What to do?")

Do you know Pete Wilson?  He is a pastor in America and he wrote a book about idolatry.  He views an idol as anything we seek to get something from that we should only get from God.  (I don't know if those are his exact words, but it is his overall idea).


So working with this definition of an idol, I asked myself what I was seeking from running (9 minute miles on easy days) that I should be getting from God.  Let's fast-forward through the superficial stuff and get to the point: acceptance.  I wanted running to tell me that I am good enough.  I wanted to try hard and get rewarded because of my efforts.  I wanted to place my identity in running.  I wanted running to tell me who I am.

But that is not the Gospel!  So let's remind ourselves what the Gospel is: God saves (saving) sinners.  I do not try hard enough and eventually save myself.  There is nothing for me to show God that would be good enough to save me.  What I have done (sinned) has made me enemies with God.  My good works (my trying hard) are like filthy rags.  I am not good enough.


Thanks be to God, who delivers us through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:25)

God has provided a way!  Yay!  When I trust Jesus to be my Savior, I get a new identity.  My identity is found in Christ.

How does this relate back to me and my running?
I redeem lies with truth:

  • Out of the heart the mouth speaks, that means the Words of God comes from His Heart.
    • He says that I am I am good enough.  Not because of anything I can or can not do.  But because of what He has done for me.  I am enough.  I am accepted and not condemned.
  • God is passionate about his glory.  I want running to bring God glory.  There is no reason for running to bring me shame, regardless of my pace.
  • I am saved by grace through faith; and that not of myself, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
  • Psalm 115:8 says that those who make idols will be like them and so will all who trust in them. I would much rather trust in God and be conformed to his likeness.  (I think the end of Romans 1 also goes along with this idea.)
I do believe that my theology applies to my everyday life.  It is important for me to step back and examine the thoughts/beliefs that motivate my actions.  What else in my life is an idol (anything we seek to get something from that we should only get from God)?  How can the gospel redeem me?

So to end my story: I am still running sluggish some days.  On those days I preach the Gospel to myself while I run.  I end my runs thankful for God's goodness and faithfulness, instead of berating myself for my slowness.  God is love.  He is not going to run out.  I am confident that He is well stocked in grace, patience, and compassion as well.

So, what idols are in your heart?  (that is rhetorical)

p.s.  Thank you, Ian, for listening to my 28354235 minutes of whining and complaining working through this.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

3rd Grade {for those of you without Facebook}

If you have facebook, this is probably going to be a boring post.  But I want those of you without facebook to experience my pictures as well.

Here are my 3rd Grade Classes from this semester:

Class 3.1  They are better than a cup of black coffee on Monday mornings :-)
I teach 3rd grade on Monday mornings.
Class 3.3  One of thee CUTEST students I have taught is in this class.  His parting words to me on Monday were, "Arissa-teacher, remember me..."  I almost gave him a hug.  Also little girl in the front with the pink glasses prays during game time sometimes.  Beyond cute.


The third graders think I am a rock star.  Or a celebrity.  Or someone famous.  Whenever they see me, they go crazy.  "HELLO ARISSA TEACHER!"  I try to soak up being famous while I can.  The rest of the kiddos (4th, 5th, and 6th graders) think I am old news.


Class 3.2 :  When given the opportunity to ask Alissa-teacher anything on Monday, the first question asked by this class was, "If you are American, why aren't your eyes blue?" (that was not the exact question, but that was what they meant).  Gotta love kids!
I think third graders are rock stars.  They will gladly participate in role-plays.  And they are really dramatic.  

Class 3.4  This class definitely wins "Best Behaved".  And the girls in the class help me with my style (Arissa-teacher {a bunch of stuff in Korean} - look at my coteacher expectantly and she explains that they are saying they like me better when my hair is NOT pulled back)  Thanks girls.  I will take all the help I can get.
So here's to you 3rd grade!  May you always be full of energy and ready to participate in class!

Friday, July 13, 2012

The countdown is on!

My friend, Jen, from high school usually does a countdown for when she is leaving Kenya and heading to the USofA.  I thought it would be fun to do the same thing.  (Thanks Jen for the great idea!)

10 days until the last day of school
11 days until the first day of summer english camp
17 days until my on-line class is done! (and God-willing, I will not teach an on-line class in English to 8 year olds for a very long time.)
27 days until the last day of camp
30 days until the last day of work
31 days until we fly out (that is one month from today!)
32 days until we land in St. Louis.  Hug Mommabomma.  Say hi to Daddio.  Run in a sports bra.  Go to
     an American grocery store.  Have some major jet-lag.
33 days until we start loading the Uhaul
35 days until we hug my parents and brother and sister-in-law
37 days until we see my Grandpa and his wife and other relatives
38 days until we get to Colorado (and get to see Ian's twin and his sweet wifey!)
39 days until we move into our new apartment and go for a run in Colorado!
41 days until Ian starts orientation
44 days until Ian starts classes

oh p.s.  Do ya'll read the nester?  You should.  She talks about the killers.  If you are a killer, please do not try to stalk us and kill us in the next 45 days.  K? thanksbye!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Only in Korea...

Homeplus (it is similiar to Wal-mart) recently got some new shopping carts.  Shopping in carts in Korea are four-wheel drive (meaning all the wheels go any which way they want....you can pull your cart down the aisle sideways).

Now to add to the 4-wheel-driveness...


...calorie counting!  Each shopping cart is equipped with a panel that tells you how far you have walked and how many calories you have burned.

I walked all of 460 meters (that is about once around a track) and burned a whooping 21 calories on my shopping trip last week.

The carts can also hold a drink (Korean-sized drink) and your smart phone.

What will they think of next?

Friday, July 6, 2012

Grilling Out {Korean Style}

One of things that I really miss about America is walking barefoot through the grass, pulling up lawn chairs, and grilling out.

But Ian and I have found a good substitute - grilling galbi outdoors at a restaurant.  It is quite common to go to samgupsal or galbi resturants and grill your own meat.  (I think it always happens this way.)


On this particular day, the weather was perfect for grilling, so we requested to sit outside.  The tables at galbi/samgupsal resturants have the grill built into the table, along with the hook-up to the gas.  At this restaurant, you grill over burning charcoal, but sometimes, it is over a gas burner.



Anywho, we got our meat, started cooking and snacking on the banchan (side dishes) while we waited for the meat to grill.


We got got a good amount of meat (we both left full), maybe 5 or 6 side dishes, and a bottle of soju for less than $20 US dollars.

We visit this particular restaurant at least once a month (if not every week).

What is your favorite food to grill?  (Or is everyone's answer hamburgers?)

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Galbi Pizza {and my list of top 5 favorite pizzas}

Ya'll.  I have finally discovered the pizza that will complete my top 5 favorite pizza list.

I would not say that I have a favorite pizza.  My cravings depends on the weather, my mood, and what part of the world/country I am in.

In alphabetical order, here are the first four pizzas on my list:
On a random side note, I think this pizza and this pizza are also really good, but I don't remember what they actually taste like, I just remember Ian wanting to make them like once a week in America.

Moving on.

So the other night we made *galbi and it was so.good.  While I was eating the galbi, I was like, "this would make an awesome pizza".  We are on a pizza kick in our apartment right now.


When you eat galbi, it is usually served with **ssamjang and ***ggaennip.  Here is the basic idea behind my new favorite pizza.

1.) Marinate the meat.  We use a soy sauce, sesame oil, water, sesame seeds, garlic marinate.  I did not measure any of it, I just poured stuff in. I used quite a bit of soy sauce.  We marinated the meat for overnight and during the school day (less than 24 hours though).  

2.) Cook the meat.  We cook ours in the pan on the stove, but if you have a grill, I would use that instead.

This is from a galbi restaurant a few weeks ago...not the galbi that went on our pizza, but you get the idea
3.) Eat the meat.  Make a fun little wrap with ggaennip, galbi, and ssamjang.  Yum-o!

4.) Put the leftovers in the fridge. :-)

5.) Prepare a pizza crust.  We (by we, I mean Ian who is the pizza crust genius) like to stick our crust in the oven for a bit.

6.) Spread pizza sauce over crust.  Spread some ssamjang on the pizza as well.  I don't know how much we used, but I would say some goes a long way.  

7.) Chop up the leftover ggaenip and galbi and spread that on.  Top with cheese.

8.)  Finish baking.



It is so good.  There are hints of garlic from the ssamjang, saltiness from the marinate on the galbi, and gooey yumminess with the cheese.  This is definitely the best pizza that I have eaten in Korea.

What is your favorite type of pizza?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I learned a lot about galbi while writing this post, so I will share my new found knowledge with you.  *Galbi are short-ribs that have been marinated in soy-sauce and then grilled.  I think galbi is usually beef, but there is also dwaegi galbi (pork) and dok galbi (chicken).  Samgupsal is a similar cut of meat except it is not marinated.  {still delicious}

**Ssamjang is AMAZING I am going to bring some of it to America with us. Ssamjang is a paste made of bean paste, pepper paste, sesame oil, onion, green onion, and garlic. I, personally, think that garlic is one of the main flavors of ssamjang.

***GGaennip are sesame seed leaves. I think they may be known as perilla. They have a hint of minty flavor to them. I love them as well.