Saturday, July 18, 2009

TODAY IS HYUN WOOK's BIRTHDAY!

Hyun Wook is back in Korea now, but he has the distinction of being the homestay student who lived in my house the longest--6 years--from 2002 to 2008. He came to Washington, learned English at a local community college, went on to get his A.A. degree from that same college, then transferred to the University of Washington and finished his B.S. degree in computer science.

Here is a picture of him soon after he moved to my home.
Hyun Wook and Teddy Bear. Teddy Bear adored Hyun Wook and thought he belonged to him

Here is a picture taken the day I said goodbye to Hyun Wook at SeaTac Airport six years later. If you wonder why my smile is pained, my nose is red and my eyes are brimming with tears, well, quite frankly, I felt like I was losing my son!
Six years is a long time and I have so many pictures and so many memories, I can't even begin to share them all. However, the highlight was his parent's first visit in 2005. They stayed in my guest room and we had a wonderful time visiting and getting to know each other. They are among the best international parents I think I have ever met!
His mom enjoyed making Korean meals for her son, and Hyun Wook was as happy as a lark eating his mom's home cooking again. I quickly understood why. She was an awesome cook. Kim Chee? If his mom makes it, I'll eat it! Store-bought kim-chee absolutely pales in comparison to hers.
Here is a Korean meal Hyun Wook's mom made for us. I don't remember the names of the different dishes, but I do know it was all very delicious. Quite frankly, I enjoy eating food from other countries much more than I enjoy American food.
Hyun Wook was an amazing student. When he transferred to the University of Washington, they were turning away a lot of students who wanted into the computer science program. Only those with very high GPA's could get in.
Hyun Wook, his mom withthe University of Washington mascot--the Husky. (Go Huskies!)

Hyun Wook easily made the grade and was accepted without any problems. And, he graduated with honors!
We all still miss you very much, Hyun Wook. It just hasn't been the same here without you.
Hyun Wook and Athena.

We hope you are having a happy birthday in Korea this year.
Happy Birthday, Hyun Wook!
video

Love,

Homestay Mama

Saturday, July 4, 2009

What the...??

Who, what, where??
Oh, that's just Teddy Bear Scaredy Cat-- in the darkest, quietest place he can find!
(Downstairs in my office.)

He hates loud noises. They scare the 'spit' out of him.

Firecrackers are the worst.
Happens every 4th of July and New Year's Eve.

He's not a happy camper.
I'm sorry, Teddy Bear!

You can come out now.
It's midnight and all the noisemakers went home.





HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, UNCLE SAM!
(233 years today!)


LONG MAY YOU LIVE!


GOD BLESS AMERICA,
THE LAND OF THE FREE
AND
THE HOME OF THE BRAVE!