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Archive for March, 2011

The simple things

Hello from Ireland! How are y’all?

(Please feel free to comment!:) )

It is nice to know that when I say “y’all” there are actually people out there who understand me! Haha…I find that when I say, “y’all” here in Ireland, people look at me as if I am from outer space!

Thanks okay though!

Yesterday, I went with the Malseeds, Ashley, and Whitney to Powerscourt Waterfall where we saw an incredibly beautiful part of nature that God so generously made for all of us to be reminded that He is almighty.

Check out its beauty…

I am being reminded every day that God has created so many things from His generosity and what he didn’t create with His own hands, He gave someone the talent to create it. Wow. God is good!

So of course we took pictures of ourselves in front of the waterfall and with each other…

After partaking from the beauty of this incredible sight, we had a little cookout where James, Ashley’s host dad, cooked us sausage links and we paired it with fruit and chocolate! YUM!

Inside our Cadbury Shortcake Snack wrapper I found a little message that I have to share with you here…

This message reads:

Top Dunking Tips

1. Start by preparing a cup of tea or coffee (preferably tea). Add milk or sugar as desired.

2. Place the SNACK between the thumb and forefinger. Ensure you have a firm hold-tight enough so slippage does not occur, but not so tight that the milk chocolate melts on your fingers.

3. Slowly and confidently lower the SNACK into the hot beverage and submerge the tip to between 15 and 20 mm.

4. Hold for 1.5 seconds.

5. Remove quickly and place in mouth allowing the chocolate to melt even further. Bite and enjoy-yummy!

6. This process may be repeated but the danger levels increase with each dunk. The number of safe dunks is usually 3 (see chart opposite).

Troubleshooting:

Ir you have accidental biscuit breakaway and splash-down, you should either (a) fish out with a teaspoon, drain and eat (making sure nobody is watching) or (b) finish your beverage as normal (enjoying th chocolate infusions) and learn from the experience.

DO NOT under any circumstances try to retrieve the submerged biscuit with your bare fingers-it’s both dangerous and mess.

Good luck and enjoy!

Much love,

Ireland Dreamer

PS–Please pray for Whitney, she is sick right now, and that makes for a miserable trip in Ireland.

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On Friday night, we went to the Irish Cultural Center where we were going to learn how to do traditional Irish dancing and listen to traditional Irish music. This was a time where we were immersed into a group of people from all over Europe. Apparently it is a popular place for foreigners to learn about some of the culture of Ireland. We had a wonderful time where we learned 3 dances and danced in partners around a dance floor.

Of course because none of us knew how to dance and the music was something new to us, we were all bumping into each other and it ended up being a complete mess of people who were clueless about what we were doing, but having a blast doing it!

Take a look…

Saturday, we went into “town,” which is what people around here refer to Dublin. Whitney and I were supposed to meet up with the other girls, but she and I missed a turn and found ourselves in a residential part of Dublin where the architecture was phenomenal. I have found that the architecture here is, as expected, much older style than what we have in the United States, and I have to say that I absolutely LOVE it!

To say the least, it is BEAUTIFUL!

Here are some of the photos…

This first photo is actually of the Irish Cultural Center, but I thought I would add it into the architecture I found in Dublin.

Once we realized that we had gone much to far, I stopped a nice guy to ask where Grafton Street is and he kindly gave us a description of where to go and how to get there. He was wonderful.

I have to say, the people here are incredibly friendly and loads of fun. I have met so many people who have gone out of their way to make our stay as wonderful as possible and who have enjoyed doing it!

We then walked around Grafton Street which is a pedestrian only street and shopped a bit. There were so many people there and no specific flow of traffic. I was hard to decide where we were supposed to walk, but we saw all sorts of cool things. There were street singers, painters, photographers, and sand artists on the street who were sharing their art with all people, and there were all sorts of different shops and eateries. All of which were a bit pricey. Whitney and I found a nice place to eat a burger and have some fries.

Check out the sand art!!

We didn’t buy anything that day except for the coffee and a sweet. It was DELICIOUS!!!

I think this was my favorite part of the day aside from spending time with a wonderful friend and enjoying the culture around me.

Until later

Much Love,

~Ireland Dreamer

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Irish Lingo Lesson

How is that for alliteration!

There have been so many things that I have learned not to say because I inevitably get a giggle from the students in my class or the kids in my house. I never knew there were so many words that mean something different here in Ireland. So, because I’m a sweet girl, and because I don’t want you to make a fool of yourself like I have at times on my trip and if ever you travel to Ireland, then you will be prepared. In bold are the words the Irish use differently.

Let the list begin!

Trousers are what Americans call pants and pants are what the Irish call underwear. Bangs, like on your forehead cut into your hair, are what the Irish call a fringe. I get the feeling bangs is an inappropriate word here so I must watch myself. The hood and trunk of a car are called the bonnet and the boot. This one I think is just so darn cute!

Then we have the trash can called the bin and when we say “can,” the Irish understand it as the toilet. Oops! The trash, which goes in the bin, is called rubbish.

Oh my, I think I might be lost now. My tongue is tied for sure!

Let’s see…are there any others…

…oh yes! When in Ireland, NEVER say, “Can you give me a ride to town?,” it should be, “May I have a lift to town?” Oh boy! Also, the sidewalk is not called a sidewalk here, it is called the path. Strollers that carry babies are called buggies. French fries are called chips unless you are in McDonalds, then they are called fries, and chips are called crisps.

Oh my, how will I ever keep these words straight?

Probably never so I will just get giggles from people. What’s new, right?

Everything is wonderful here and I have been enjoying myself in everything I have been doing! Yesterday we walked down to the beach which is a short walk from the house and basked in the unbelievable beauty that God has put on this earth.

Behold, the Irish Sea!

This was taken just south of the village where I am living. The name of this village is Bray and the walkway here was absolutely beautiful! We walked all the way down to the end of this walkway and back which is about 1.25 miles. The weather was beautiful and the sea was beautiful. This was just before we went to the Porterhouse Inn for dinner where they are known worldwide for their brewery.

My roommate Whitney and I shared an appetizer where there were onion rings, wings, ribs, fries, and little sausages. It was pretty yummy and we got out much cheaper than anyone else! Even better! 😀

On our way back home, we of course traveled on the train. This is the train I travel everyday to and from school, and we also travel on the train if we go to another village and if we go into town. This train is called the DART.

And of course…..IT’S GREEN!!

Anyway…tonight, we are going to the Irish cultural center in Monkstown so I’ll let you know about that tomorrow!

Much love!

~Ireland Dreamer

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Hello to everyone back home!

I have settled in nicely in Shankill and have been loving every moment of my experience so far! I have now spent 3 days in the school at Rathdown, and I am loving that it is an all girls school. It is a new experience for me to be in a school with all girls, but the students are lovely and the teachers are excellent!

The students in P2 or second class or second grade, as we Americans call it, have been learning about Egypt. More specifically, the students have been learning about King Tutankhamun (pronounced Toot-in-cah-moon) otherwise known as King Tut because the exhibit is in town for a bit and the students are traveling to the exhibit to see the artifacts from his tomb. It amazes me how much these students know about King Tut, and how much they have been able to teach me!

Tomorrow I am to be in what is called KG3 or Senior Infants which is what would be the equivalent to Kindergarten in the United States. It should be interesting because I am spending time with them tomorrow and Friday and it has been a year since I have been around that many little munchkins, but I’m super excited! The ages of 5 and 6 are always such a joy.

I find that with every age of student, I find something that I love about each and every one of the students. They all have their wonders and their frustrations, and I find that I learn something new and it has been an absolutely wonderful experience all this week.

Throughout this week I have met a variety of people out at the restaurant in town, through my host family, and through the other international student teachers. There is one international student teacher from Indiana who has Van Morrison’s daughter in her pre-school classroom. CRAZY!!

I have been trying to keep up with posting on here, but I have been having some trouble with the internet, so please bear with me as I navigate this new experience. I love you all and miss you tons, but I know that God has brought me to where I am supposed to be.

Much Love,

Ireland Dreamer

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Finally Settled In

I know, I know. For those of you who are checking on my travels and experiences (and me, I’m sure) so far, I have been neglecting my blog for the past couple days of my adventure.

This morning will be an incredibly short post because it is only about 7am here, and about 3am in North Carolina, but I will TRY to post again tonight with a bit more meat in it.

For those of you who don’t know yet, I’m in Ireland!! As I have said before, I really can’t believe that I’m here, and my dream has come true. It has been a beautiful country so far, and I true wish that I would have been able to take a picture of the lights of Dublin as we were landing in the plane. It was a wonderful sea of lights which was a collections of blue, orange, and yellow. It is so hard to describe, but it almost brought tears to my eyes. Although, I’m not sure if it was the shear exhaustion I was experiencing or the actual arrival to the place I had been planning to see for the last 4 months.

Who knows!

My host family is wonderful!! Hilary (host mom) came to pick us up from the bus stop which was outside of Brady’s of Shankill, one of the most popular pubs in the surrounding small towns. She was absolutely lovely! She was friendly and talkative and fully of energy, and made both Whitney and myself feel right at home almost immediately.

This was a good thing because she is stuck with the both of us for the next 6 weeks!

Her husband Stuart is a mild-mannered, gentle man who is also incredibly kind and generous. He is interested in what is going on at our schools during the day, and actually cooked us dinner last night because Hilary was out.

Their two children are wonderful as well. Juliette is 14 and she is one of the most talkative teenagers I have ever met. She has filled us in on words that we should not say or might use differently in the States. Also, as anticipated, she has goofed off and made fun of my accent. Who knew I have an accent! Me? Not me!

haha…I know…I’m kidding!

Anyway…here is a teaser of some pictures from the past couple of days. I will explain them, and if I can, add more tonight.

Tata for now!

Much love,

Ireland Dreamer

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The time has come

It is all over now. The process of student teaching in North Carolina is officially done. Today, I turned in my Impact on student learning project and received my final grade of passing, I have applied for my license in North Carolina, and tomorrow…yep, tomorrow is the day. I leave for Ireland. International student teaching HERE I COME!!

I can’t believe the day is already here. In just a few short hours I will be on the plane across the ocean, leaving everything and everyone I know and love behind me. It is crazy to imagine that I will be so far away from all that is familiar in such a short time.

Wow.

Anyway…now is the time.

I have to go and unpack my bag a little more because it is too heavy!! Ahh!!

The next time I write, I will be in Ireland, thousands of miles away.

Until then.

Love,

Ireland Dreamer

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Countdown continues

I know, I know…it has been several days since I have posted. I’m sorry, I’m horrible.

Though, I do have a good excuse! It has been so busy and crazy here with school and homework and work that I have barely been able to keep up with the information that I have needed to keep up with, much less keeping up with the things that I want to keep up with. The things I want to keep up with covers posting to my blog.

Anyway, enough ranting and raving, I have so many things to be thankful for…like…

11 DAYS TO GO!!

Oh my goodness, I can’t believe that the time has flown so quickly. I still have a several things that I need to do this week in order to ensure that I will be ready for my trip, but I am getting close and the day is quickly approaching. I have to finish my IMPACT project and my PDP (Professional Development Plan) and I have to pack and make sure that I have all the papers, clothes, and gifts I need for my trip.

Woah.

So much to do.

On another note, I had an awesome day today! I worked with my students on the circulation of the blood through the heart and through the lungs. So, Erin and I asked one of the 8th grade math and science teachers, Travis, to come down and help us convey the information to our students. He, in all his wonderfulness, drew a massive model of the heart on the black top at the basketball courts. Our students became blood cells during this part of the day. Their paper cells that they held in their hands had one side that was red, and the other side that was blue. The students were assigned an initial color and were taught how the blood flows through the heart and out into the lungs or the body.

I learned an extreme amount too.

Wow…how much I had forgotten about the heart!

I learned that the blood travels from the body into the right atrium through the tricuspid valve and into the right ventricle. The blood then leaves the heart through the pulmonary artery and it goes into the lungs to pick up oxygen. Then the oxygen rich blood travels through the pulmonary vein into the left atrium then through the mitral valve into the left ventricle. Finally, the blood is pumped from the left ventricle out into the body to provide the tissues and organs with oxygen. Then, the heart and lungs and blood do it all over again.

When Travis did the lesson with our students, he divided them into four groups and the students were able to travel through the heart on foot in order to learn how their heart works to keep them alive. It was absolutely beautiful! The students has a blast and they learned so much information. Several of the students were able to walk the path through the heart all by themselves!

I was amazed and excited and I was in love with this activity! Absolutely wonderful!

Don’t worry, I will post pictures soon!

Much love,

Ireland Dreamer

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