Mother’s Day Weekend

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Our original Mother’s Day plan was to take the train into Seoul and explore Hongdae, but it rained all day so we had to change our plan.

Tim drove us to the new Starfield Mall in Goyang. We started with lunch at Shake Shack. The food was pretty good. They let me order my burger without a bun. Clarissa would not share her French fries with me. The ice cream was good too. The prices weren’t bad either. Clarissa was most excited about the foosball table but there wasn’t a ball for that.

There was a fun train set up near the restaurants. Clarissa was very excited about this as well.

The mall had four floors plus a basement level. There were a few kid cafes and a water park that we did not check out. The Toy Kingdom in this mall was the best I have seen so far. It had its own Lego store and each aisle was labeled in Korean and English. Clarissa really enjoyed pretending to drive the train as well.

Tim liked that the Electromart was broken into different parts so that the clothes were on a different floor and he could focus on the things he wanted to see. There were lots of fun stores like Daiso, Art Box, and Flying Tiger Copenhagen plus several that I had never heard of before. On the basement floor, they did have a really nice supermarket called PK Market that had gourmet foods and No Brand which is Shinsagae’s generic brand that has some snacks that we really enjoy. We bought some fun things.

Another fun thing happening at this mall (until June 30) is a Frozen display in the middle of the first floor. You could take a picture with an Elsa or Anna statue. They even had dresses you could buy to dress up like either Elsa or Anna. At one point in the afternoon, there was a performance where a man and a woman sing Frozen songs in Korean. Clarissa thought it was too loud, so she wasn’t really smiling in her pictures.

 

I think this Starfield Mall had the best variety of stores. They had great parking as well. Our only complaint was the temperature. It was pretty muggy from the rain and the air conditioner was not on inside the mall. It would probably be more comfortable in mid summer with the air conditioning on full blast or in the winter time.

When we arrived at the mall, Tim saw a sign that said IKEA was 5 km away so we decided that we should go there afterwards. As usual, we were not disappointed with IKEA. I think this parking lot is better than the other location. There were plenty of fun furniture items to look at and we ended up buying some new comfy towels to replace our nine year old newlywed towels. Also, they had delicious food for dinner.

On Sunday, we went to church. At the end of the service, Pastor Al called up all the mothers and mothers to be. He read us an inspirational poem, anointed us with oil, and prayed over us. It was really cool. Plus, he even thought to have someone go to the Sunday school class and relieve the teachers so that we could participate as well. I felt so blessed and appreciated.

After church Clarissa and I did our usual church lunch followed by a trip to the library on post. We went to the PX for some baby shower shopping. Then, we came home to eat pizza and watch Nim’s Island with Tim.

I had a great weekend with my family.

Mother’s day in Ulsan

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We had a family photo shoot at Duryu park in April. We got the pictures just in time for Mother’s Day. I think my favorite is the one of Tim and Clarissa. If you are in Daegu, I highly recommend March Photography.

Tim got his finger shut in a car door last Thursday. It turned black and the doctor said his nail would probably fall off. So we rested on Mother’s Day.

This Saturday was the day we actually celebrated Mother’s Day. Tim said we could go wherever I wanted. So we headed to Ulsan for Mexican food and to check out¬†Daewangam Park.

Waze said it would take two hours to get to Ulsan. As usual, it took us longer. We needed to charge our Hi-pass. The website said you could charge the card at Emart, so we tried that on Friday. They don’t charge Hi-pass at emart, at least not the one we went to. So then we tried to charge it at several different rest stops. As foreigners without a Korean bank account, we have to charge with cash. There were several charging stations along the way, but they were machines and you had to pay with Korean credit card. So we just had to pay cash to go through the tolls.

Most of the rest stops we have been to in Korea so far are huge. They have several restaurants, a room for nursing mothers, bathrooms, and several shops. Some also have other entertainment. Our first stop had batting cages. Clarissa thought they were pretty cool.

On the way, we say a sign that said we were on Asian Highway 1. I thought I could get a picture later in the journey, but sadly there was only one sign. I googled it because I thought it was strange that the sign said you could go from Japan to Turkey, since Japan is an island! There is a ferry from Fukuoka, Japan to Busan, Korea to connect the roads. The route is 12,774 miles long!

When we arrived at O’Taco, I realized that I didn’t check the temperature for Ulsan before we left. We were underdressed. It felt 10-15 degrees cooler than Daegu. Clarissa and I were quite chilly in our t-shirts and shorts. We loved the view though. We took some pictures before we walked to the restaurant.

O’Taco was a cute little resturant. There were several Simpsons decorations inside. There was seating both inside and outside. If I wasn’t chilly I would have wanted to sit outside. After we ordered, we went outside to take more pictures.

The food was excellent. Tim got a grilled chicken with fried rice meal. I got three tacos. Clarissa ordered chips and salsa and then also demanded to eat Tim’s french fries. We were happy with the taste of the food. The service was friendly. Though we were still hungry at the end of our meal. I am used to going to my favorite Mexican restaurant in the States and getting two tacos, rice, and beans for like $8. Here, I got three tacos for 5,000 won (almost $5) each. Tim’s meal was 17,000 won. The chips and salsa were 2,000 won. They had several tasty beverages at well.

Then we tried to go to Daewangam Park. They have a large dragon playground, coffee shops, trees, and a beach. Apparently Saturday afternoon is not the best time to go. Or rather, that is the time that everyone goes. There was a ton of parking and parking attendants who waved a long line of cars through. However, after driving around for twenty minutes, there was no parking. There was an overflow lot down the hill from the park, but that one was full as well. Ilsan beach was down the road, so we went there instead.

The beach was pretty. There was a nice paved boardwalk with some street vendors and a really nice public shower and toilet. Across the street there were several shops and restaurants. We could see a Home Plus in the distance. But since Clarissa and I were both cold, we didn’t last long. We stopped at GS25 for some ice cream and then decided to head back.