Sunday, May 16, 2010

May Is a Glorious Month!

The weather here in Geoje has finally begun to warm a little, which is a welcome change. This past week on one of my walks, I saw that the local farmers have begun to plant the rice paddies. I love the orderly rows of bright green sprouts and look forward to the summer months when the rice plants get a bit bigger and everything looks so much prettier. The trees all have their leaves now, and azaleas are in full bloom everywhere. Now that things are nicer outside, more and more of our neighbors can be found out in the grassy area in front of our building, playing with their kids or grilling out with friends. It makes a big difference to me to see the neighbors around and have a chance to chat - it feels much less lonely here. The grill parties are bound to pick up this summer now that Keegan and several of his co-workers have contributed a new grill, fashioned from a 55-gallon oil drum. We tried it out last night, and it was quite a success!

Our friends Mark and Chang Mi show off the result of the grill project. It looks much nicer now with a new coat of black paint, a smokestack, and a handle for the lid, but I don't have an updated picture.

Keegan and I had a really nice weekend together last weekend in Gyeongju, the first capital of a united Korea during the Silla dynasty. It was a cool place. Apparently, they have some kind of crazy architectural code in the area that requires all of the gas stations to be built in the style of traditional houses, with fancy tile roofs. There are tons of temples and historical sites to see, including some large grassy mounds that cover the tombs of kings from the Silla dynasty. There were glorious azaleas everywhere and lots of lanterns at the temples in preparation for Buddha's birthday later this month.

Keegan rings the temple bell at Seogeuram Grotto in Gyeongju.

We had a chance to take lots of pictures, eat some new and different Korean dishes (and some old favorites), and just relax. We stopped at Costco in Busan on the way home and bought two beach chairs to take to the beach this summer. You have no idea how hard such chairs are to find around here and how happy I am to have somewhere to sit at the beach.

I continue to grow bigger and bigger, and so does Baby.

Ellen and the belly at 33 weeks

This week we had another doctor's appointment, and all is well. The baby is estimated to be about 2.2 kilograms (4.85 pounds) now, so she is growing quite a bit. I can feel her all the time and see her little feet pressing out against my belly. I've been doing prenatal yoga at the maternity clinic and have met a whole classful of Korean pregnant women, some of whom are due only a few weeks after me in July. I also have gotten to know a Korean woman who lives in our apartment building and is married to one of Keegan's co-workers. She has been riding to the class with me and sharing her pregnancy stories. She is about 20 weeks along now, and she is also having a girl. It's nice to know some more people who are having babies here.

Keegan is unfortunately in Houston this week for training for work. I drove him to the airport yesterday morning, and this morning he checked in on Skype to let me know that he had arrived safe and sound. He has a whole list of little things to pick up in the U.S. and plans to meet up with a high school friend of his, so I hope he will enjoy his time there. Everyone here has been so sympathetic that he is out of town while I am so pregnant, so I am enjoying the recognition of my plight. Seriously, though, I am doing quite well and looking forward to several evenings of Gray's Anatomy and extra time to work on some projects before the baby comes. The week will go by fast, and I'll be on my way back to Busan to pick Keegan up in no time.


KIM! said...

Good luck Ellen, I am sure having people to commiserate makes being pregnant a little bit easier.

chrissy said...

I love your grill. I bet it would make a great smoker too. =D

Mom said...

Nice belly :)