Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Eating and shopping and tea, oh my!

(Kevin here. So it won't sound as smart as it usually does with Mal.. but she will say something at the bottom, so don't miss it.)

It's been a long day, so the easier route to blogging about our adventures is to share photos. Thus, I'll take you through our day via pictures and short captions. Enjoy.

I was excited about the day, so my body decided to wake up at 5:00am. The bad news is I couldn't get back to sleep. The good news is that I caught the beautiful sunrise from our room:

Our first and main order of business today was to take a tour of the city. We were accompanied and guided by our friend, Hyuna. She was awesome. Our first stop was at a the largest palace in Seoul, where Malerie really enjoyed hanging with the guards. And hanging LIKE the guards:

Then I found a piano in the middle of the city, so I played it. No tips were given. They don't tip in Korea. For real. They actually don't. No restaurant, taxi, or bellman tips. Ever. Here's the piano:

We fulfilled our desire to rule a country by dressing up like a king and queen:

An authentic Korean lunch included dumplings, some sort of fried "cakes" and of course, kimchi. Malerie attempted the chopsticks, but after much frustration, the nice lady at the restaurant reluctantly delivered that new age utensil, the fork. We also made sure to sport our family love, war eagle:

Right next to the restaurant was Hyuna's favorite tea cafe in the city. It was super delicious:

The atmosphere was even cooler. We sat on mats on the floor... without shoes (a traditional custom in Korea) by the way. Look:

Malerie was a natural. She even looked Asian drinking it:

And we found a cartoon character, who fell into the trap of taking the stereotypical Asian shot, meaning it couldn't resist the release of the peace sign from its hand. Good times:

There was definitely more to our day but the camera got put away, and it's almost 1:00am here. It's unfathomable that we will MEET GIA in NINE HOURS. Wow. God is so good to us.

Prayers are so appreciated on one of the wildest days of our life tomorrow. Or later today for most of you guys. :) Until then, we sleep. You go to work. And Gia is with us soon.


I just want to share two really amazing moments from today.

Our tour guide was really sweet about us adopting from her country.  It never occurred to me how awkward I would feel walking around a country and knowing that I'm adopting one of their own babies.  I felt guilty at times as Hyuna asked us about Gia.  I'm nervous about what tomorrow will be like as we walk around with her as first time parents.  Anyway, at one point of today Hyuna asked what our baby's name was, so we gave her the Korean name and the American name.  She lit up and said, "That sounds much like a Korean name."  And then I lit up, "Really?!" Apparently Giha is a popular Korean name, and it's pronounced just like Gia.  How fun!  We didn't even know how culturally relevant we were when we chose that name.

The next amazing thing from today will not be amazing unless you know me.  I mean really know me.  I wore tennis shoes all day long.  All day.  No heels at all.  No flip flops at all. Just the tennis shoes.  Go ahead and catch your breath.  :)   But seriously, most every single woman here wears heels of various sizes.  I'm so impressed.  However, not one person wears flip flops, and that makes me all kinds of sad.  

Alrighty... time for some shut eye.


  1. Love these pics! Malerie makes a great Korean queen... but you look like a Disney Wizard Kev!

    We've seen sweet Asian babies every day on this beach trip and every time it makes me think of you guys! We are counting down with ya'll! Can't wait until you have your sweet girl in your arms and you are ALL home with us!!!

  2. EEEK ! I can't wait for the next update!!!!!!!

  3. Thank you soooooo much for sharing this!!! Wow! Malerie is so funny in that guard pic! Kevin, that piano thing...that is amazing and I bet a lot of people enjoyed hearing your beautiful music! The pic is really cool too.

    I am so excited for you two...amazingly! I can't wait until the next update either. I was talking to some people at my ladies Bible study today about you guys. Our worship leader claims that he learned guitar because of you, Kevin. Also another lady said that you had the same social worker as they do for the adoption. They are adopting a boy from Asia (China I believe). It would be so awesome if you could come visit sometime at our church and share your story!

    Love ya and celebrating in my heart as well as praying for you.

  4. we are joyful joyful people we are joyful in this place
    we are joyful Gia is coming home to share Gods amazing Grace
    love Linn and Tracy

  5. You visited Gyeongbukgong Palace (one of my favorites) and ate pajeon (the pancakes...did they have octopus in them? My favorite!) and mandu (the dumplings).....

    Try hotteok and tteokbokki on the street!