Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Today is the last day of school (sung to the tune of Mary had a little lamb)

Today is the last day of school
day of school
day of school
Today is the last day of school in the year.

I will miss them when they're gone
when they're gone
when they're gone
I will miss them when they're gone BUT I'm not sad to go.

It's a bittersweet day, after spending 185 days with these little people it will be hard to say good- bye to them. I will most likely just burst into tears and let that be my good-bye, I did yesterday. This year has been complicated, I learned a lot about myself, children and teaching but there were times when I was ready to pack up and leave because of the stupidity of the things that the administration chose to harass me over.

Regardless it feels good to be finished, I still lhave to work for 2 more weeks but I will not have any kids - slave labour for me.
Okay, I'm off a little early today as I need a vanilla latte from Starbucks before I get to school.

ps - they have LOVED learning to knit, I have learned a lot about picking up dropped stitches as well.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

We have a winner

Well actually 2 winners. Marina and Michelle. It was random, I drew names and those are the 2 that came out. I am not sure what your going to get yet, I'll have to see what I can find. Thanks for playing. It's fun to know that there are lots of folks out there who like to play, I'll have to do it again. Just so you all know I brought her home in my fanny pack, yes she fit in it, she won't anymore though!

Have a great weekend, I am off to do something out of the city, what has yet to be decided but I am going to meet friends and we will decide where we want to go.

Converting the world one child at a time

Kindergarten Graduation was today, the kids did well and I managed to get through the whole thing with no major mishaps. They were cute as ever and I am going to miss them so much. 3 more day of classes and then they are gone, another chapter finished.

Look what we did yesterday! . Posted by Hello

He has been harrassing me to teach him all year but there was never a chance. With 3 days left of school we don't have much planned and this was the perfect time. I, (being the prepared teacher that I am) got some chopsticks out, sanded the tips and away we went. It was such a huge success that they all want to learn and so off I went to LYS. I got some double points, put beads on the tips to act as ends and on Monday we are all going to knit the day away. They all really wanted to learn but the chopticks were so small that it would of been hard to get a lot of them going. Yippee for the end of the year. They are all going to be lefties though because try as I may I just can't knit with my right.

I am off to have a drink!!! I so deserve it, remember that huge to do list a few weeks back, it's almost finished and all the work related bits are now done. I even mailed home one box and packed another today, Thailand in 20 days.

PS I will draw names for prizes from my contest in the morning, or maybe later tonight. I had people enter I did not even know were out there, thanks for entering.

Thursday, May 26, 2005


There seems to be some doubts about how little she really was, so for your entertainment here are the pictures. I had her about 4 days in these photos, long enough to feed her heaps of food and take her to the vet to make sure she would survive. She's bigger now not but not huge as far as beagles go. Posted by Hello
I think she licked the camera after this picture. Posted by Hello

Monday, May 23, 2005


3 wows today

I only have 7 more days with my class and that includes today.

I overdosed on allergy medicine last night but slept through the night without waking up sneezing uncontrollably

I already have people answering and they are all correct, what good readers I have.

Gotta go make my lunch. Have a good day

FYI - I'll take answers until Friday, whenever Friday is for you.


Okay so I have been blogging for a year and I decided to follow the lead of some others and have a contest. It's simple really, all you have to do is find the answer the the question below and email it to me at bagknitteratyahoodotca. Please email me your answer instead of leaving it the comments and I will draw from among the correct ones for 2 prizes, both will be a suprise from my summer travels. I don't know what yet, that really makes it a suprise.

Okay here's the question - When I bought Tai how did I get her home to my apartment? The answer is here in the archives but you will have to look for it. It quite specific and you need to tell me exactly what I did to be correct.

Happy Searching and happy 1st birthday to me and my blog.

*Addition of a clue* I think this might be a little hard for some of you and I know that many people have other things to do rather than spend hours reading my blog archives so here's a hint. Tai is almost a year old. That's all you get though.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

a day in the life of me

3:00 am - wake up having yet another severe allergy attack - this has happened every night for about a week, doesn't matter what I do I still wake up sneezing in the wee hours of the morning, I finally got back to sleep.

6:15 - bang, bang, bang, bang - gunshots perhaps. No a funeral procession going down my street with firecrackers, drums and loud music

9:00 am - Amazing race, season 7. I know who wins but I am enjoying anyway.

10:00 am - Phone calls to a variety of folks I love, answering emails and looking for Thailand hotels.

12:30 - Leave for an afternoon of shopping with a friend, bought some zip off pants for my summer trip.

4:30 return home, crank the AC and putter around the house, laundry to get going etc.

5:00 - More bangs, firecrackers galore as another funeral procession heads down my street, this was the biggest one yet. Tai is not afraid of the firecrackers but she is afraid of the drums - funny dog.

So far nothing too exciting... right, just an average day at 43 Fu Yang Jie.

5:15 - Landlords arrive and walk into apartment unannounced, I am only wearing a night shirt. I throw on some clothes and go out to meet them. They have another person with them and there is much conversing in Chinese, She is the lady from across the hall. Apartment here are bought one by one or floor by floor. It's kinda like a stack of duplexes at home. So they have to get her in on fixing the leak that has been driving me crazy since December. Well there is much going back and forth between her space and ours and lots of talking and hand motions and then they drag me over to the other ladies space to see what is happening and what do I see..... a wall of black mold! Yes the leak in my bedroom is water seeping in from her moldy rooftop patio and she has done nothing about it. Lucky me. My chronic cough, horrible allergies and constant sneezing when I am near this wall in my room all make more sense to me now.

They are replacing the roof and getting rid of the mold - the toxic black mold. But I have to tolerate it for 26 more days... at least I know why my allergies are so bad.

7:00 pm Landlords finally start to leave after much saying sorry, sorry, sorry for the mold and water in my room they left.
I made some soup for dinner. I watched CSI and I am moving my bed as far away from that wall as possible tonight.

Friday, May 20, 2005

In the home stretch

First a much belated thanks to all who commiserated with me over last Thursdays fire, thankfully we have all managed to put it behind us. The kidlets have recovered and all is well. Thanks Gina for the great e-card, it was exactly what I needed.

It's been a busy week, I have managed to get almost all of my work related stuff together and hopefully graduation will go off without a hitch next Saturday. I had a great dinner with Kimberli on Wednesday. We went to this fantastic Thai restaurant, the food was great and there is run down of the evening on her blog. I am so looking forward to eating Thai in THAILAND in 26 days. The giant to do list is getting smaller and I am getting excited.

Seeing Kimberli reminded me that I can't be in on SP5. Yes it's sad, but true. I will be all over the map this summer (literally) and I think the logistics might be to challenging. Oh well, hopefully I can be in on the next one. Should you want to sign up, I believe that you can until May 30 and there are already 350 participants!

This weekend I plan to beat this cold that is driving me crazy and try to get the some order in the apartment so I can start mailing things home. I decided to mail home a bunch a clothes and books but I am packing my stash... I wouldn't want that to get lost in the mail now would I. I will leave a bag here in Taipei and then pick it up when I get the dog on my way back through in July.

I am off to bike around town and run some errands, stationary store, electronics market and the LYS. There are still 2 people waiting for chibi's and I hope that the LYS finally has some more in stock. Have a great weekend

Monday, May 16, 2005

Coming up for air

Hmmm.... there is so much left to do this week and so much could still happen. Happy things, 2 Kimberli is coming at we are meeting up for dinner on Wednesday(that's tomorrow) and there are only 12 teaching days left.
There are things going on at work, some of them as a result of last weeks fire, others are just happening. Work is not going to be a fun place this week and I that's all I can say about that on the internet where anyone in the world may be reading.
I will be in Canada in 60 days, just in time to go to this, yes boys and girls the Saltspring Fiber Festival is kindly waiting for me to come back to BC before starting. Isn't that nice of them. I know that Michelle is going and I think the rest of you westcoasters need to go as well (Maureen and your little beagle too). It's not like I would ever make it to Maryland but this will be my own little westcoast shopping extravaganza.

Sadly I have to go that place that I do not want to go today.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

This is what I woke up to this morning, pouring rain, thunder and lightening for the 5th day in a row. Great weather if you are a duck, oh well a chance for me to get some knitting finished. The blanket is on vacation today as I am tired of it. Instead I am working on this bag, but that's all I can say about as it is a gift. It's kinda fun but this is my second attempt, I frogged the first because it was to loose, smaller needles this time around.  Posted by Hello
10 rows later, there's 101, the rain has stopped and the sun is thinking about shining.  Posted by Hello
Sometimes it is important to share translations of signs and let them speak for themselves.  Posted by Hello

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Fire Rant

It started off like any other other morning, nothing to exciting. I got ready for my day and my kids started to arrive, 8:45 the principal starts blowing the fire alarm whistle, I look up from my art project, over to the 3 kids at the computer and say to her as she walks by, your kidding right. Why are we having a fire drill now? I'm not kidding there's a fire is the response. Another teacher hollers at me that there is a fire, I grab the 3 kids and start to leave, then have to go back for my emergency phone list and grab my bag while I am at it, I did not want to leave my passport in a burning school.

I hustle my 3 kids out the door, pick up 2 more who are exiting the elevator and head outside into the rain. We follow the routine and hustle all the kids across the street and in front of the bank. School has just opened and so we only have about 50 of our 100 students. There is some confusion while we sort out what has happened but finally everything is under control, everyone is out and the principal has managed to extinguish the electrical fire ( it was an air condtioner short).

But we can't go back in... so we sit outside in the rain for about 30 minutes well plans are made for what to do next. As phone calls are being made, parents are still dropping off their children. Who in their right mind would leave their child at school when it has been evacuated and all of the staff and kids are sitting outside in the rain! I wouldn't, but our teaching assistants kept on assuring the parents that all was well and parents believed them. I went from 5 kids to 13 while we were sitting on the street. I was annoyed but I was not at the end of the line where the kids were being left so there was little I could say or do.

FINALLY they get it together and we are hustling the 80 odd kids we now have to the school's owners apartment around the corner, in the pouring rain. We get the kids there, in the elevator, up to the 19th floor and into the apartment. Well the owner is the middle of moving ( I won't even begin to tell you about that story) and so her apartment is a pile of 1/2 packed boxes and no furniture. We move the kids around so that each class has space and then attempt to entertain them. Meanwhile the assistants are still accepting children, I get 3 more. So I am sitting in an empty room with 16 children and nothing, I mean nothing to do. We sang every song we know, 5 classes of kids singing different songs at the same time as a little overwhelming. We played every game I could think of and still we were sitting there on the floor 2 hours later. Finally I got nosy and found some paper and pens and so they could draw. That kept them quiet for awhile longer.

Eventually we hear that the school has been cleaned up, deemed safe and we can go back. Go back, I think we should send the kids home, I think we should of sent the kids home 2 hours ago! I think we should not of let their parents drop them off at all! Folks lets get a grip here we are talking about small children. But no we are going back to school even though one classroom is out of commission because the ceiling was on fire, but nope we'll go back and just shuffle those 16 kids around to other spaces.

We get back to the school and start to hear about what happened after we left, like the accountant not calling the fire department when instructed. Instead she need to come down 3 flights of stairs to our floor to see if there really was a fire. Even better there was an assistant who snuck back to the school to see what was happening (she was supposed to be helping me) and when instructed to bring books for the children and she said no, they did not need anything and were fine. Fine, we were pulling our hair out we were so not fine.

It was a long day, kids are traumatized, teachers exhausted and I am amazed at the lack of fire safety found in this country. This year was the 1st year that the school even had fire drills, could imagine evacuating 100 3 to 6 year olds if they had never ever practiced? I can't. The fire department when finally called took 30 minutes to arrive, I mean we are talking about 15 story building and there was no way for us to know if the fire was still smoldering in the ceiling tiles or such. The whole thing was just crazy.

Ok enough ranting, I must sleep. But that damn alarm clock is ringing again, someone below has and alarm that rings all the time, like every 20 minutes and it is starting to drive me a little crazy, especially at 2 am.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005


hey there backtack match, check out the comments from the last post, (including my response full of typing mistakes) your answers are there. If you have any other questions let me know.

Sunday, May 8, 2005

Bad Bloglines

Bloglines should come with a disclaimer - it can be addictive. Before bloglines I would surf for awhile while I drank my tea and that was that. Now I have so many blogs at my fingertips at all times. Let me just say that I am addicted an spend way to much time watching for that bright red x to appear on my blogline icon.

In other news I have all the stuff for my backtack match and am sending her fabric and such today, I hope she like it. The person who has mom is asking questions, if you have anymore feel free to ask. My mom likes bright colours, cute things and animals.

I had a decent weekend, had to work on Saturday morning. We had a "picnic" in a dirty gym with 57 loud elementary students. Then I went back to the school with the best intentions to get report cards finished but instead t went to Costco. I was planning on finishing them but going to Costco was far more interesting. I got 10 done so I have 22 left. I am one my way out the door early to get some more done. They are due next Friday.

I gotta be out the door in 4 minutes.

Happy Mother's Day to those of you in other time zones and I am not biter at all about missing the weekend Maryland, it would of been a little far to go! Besides I jut out about Saltspring, more on that later.

Wednesday, May 4, 2005

I have to leave for work in 12 minutes

and I am not yet dressed, blogging is much more fun. You will all be happy to know that the overwhelming to do list is slowly but surely getting smaller. I am planning to look myself in the school on Saturday afternoon and not come out until my report cards are done.

On the puppy front, I have managed to find plane tickets that work so that I can travel and return here to get her. I also found a kennel will let her outside to play everyday and not charge me a million dollars to keep her. So it looks as though we will be okay, it means a little running but that is okay. I also have 2 offers of people to take her sooner, I will have to wait and see if either of them work out.

Chibi update - the LYS is out, they are getting more but I am not sure when. At moment I only have one person waiting for 2 and I have sent out 12. If anyone else wants some speak soon as time is running out.

I am tired of knitting my baby blanket, it's checkerboard and it's just so dull. I am through 4.5 balls and have 3 left to go. It's slow going. The backsac and hats are on hold until I get this finished. I will get it done.

Backtack names are out. If you have me you need to know that the finished product will be for my mom, not me. She is the sewer and I thought that she would like to be in on this one. So we signed up together. She is a knitter and a sewer so I am sure whatever you send her will be amazing and she will love it. I am participating with her, my blog and I am sending fabric to our match from here. I must say it is very cool fabric.

Oh I so have to go, happy Thursday one day till Friday.

Sunday, May 1, 2005

WHAT !!!!

What do you mean it is going to cost 1000 bucks to ship a little 15lb dog to Vancouver. Well the moving company charges for 66lbs regardless of how much the pet actually weighs. Can you say "highway robbery", I can. So now to add to my list of things to do I have to figure out a way to keep my dog and not have it cost me a billion dollars. There are many options but all of them depend on the kindness of strangers because all of my friends will be out of town like me in June/July. So I am spreading the word in Taiwan that I need someone to watch her or take her to Canada for me ( much cheaper for her to go as a baggage) and keep my fingers crossed that someone offers.

In other news I found out who my secret pal is but she did not leave her blog address and so I don't really know where to find her. R, if you are reading tell me where i can find your blog.

My to do list is getting smaller. It did rain on the picnic day and so although my kids where disappointed they had fun having a picnic in the gym, making cookie pizza's and playing parachute games inside. We went to the park in 5 billion degree heat on Friday afternoon instead and had a good play. The summer is so here, it's hot and the AC is back on.

Speaking of AC, when you live on the roof of a building don't open the storage room window to wide. My window AC units backs into a storage room, said room has a window. Window is always a little bit open for new air to circulate threw the AC. Makes sense, right. Well, last week I decide in my infinite wisdom to open the window more as the air was really stale and old smelling. What happens when you open a window really wide on the top of a building... the pigeons think it would be a great nest and come to visit. I woke up Thursday morning to pigeons cooing and thought it sounded to close but did not think to much of it, when it happened again on Friday I decided to investigate. I opened the storage room door and at least 5 pigeons started to fly around. They all flew out and then there was one more who just could not figure out how to leave the room. I opened the window wider and chased it out. The window is now back to only being open about an inch. You would think I would of learned my lesson in Ottawa when one flew in my living room window. What is it with me and pigeons.

Speaking of wild animals, I also have a gecko that has taken up residence on my kitchen window. I'll see if I can take a picture for you.

Thanks for all the sympathy with regards to the super long to do list. I know it will happen and when it does I will be so relieved. 4 more weeks of teaching and then 2 weeks of grunt work until I am finished.

One more thing, the Hong Kong album is finished, click here if you want to see it.