South Korea

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Our family escaped the island for a few days over the 4th of July weekend to go visit some good friends of ours in South Korea. We've been trying to meet up with them for an entire year, and we finally made it happen! They were super wonderful hosts and our daughter very literally tried to trade us in and adopt them as her new parents. She cried at the airport, "Avery wants to stay in 'rea with Danielle and Tyla!" and then cried some more on the airplane, "I forgot to say 'love you' to Danielle!" I guess you could say it was a good trip!

Dinner our first night. Avery is definitely ready for bed!

On the 4th, we stuck around our friends' town of Pyeongtaek -- ate ice cream, played on the park, chatted, watched fireworks, and relaxed. It was perfect! They also took us up a small mountain nearby to visit a beautiful, serene temple. Amazing!

 Avery seriously loves Danielle, to the extent that she declared that the baby they are expecting this winter is her sibling.

Avery also made a new friend that day, who she still talks about and keeps requesting, "please can she move to Japan?". Being a military kid is tough.

On the 5th, we hopped a bus into Seoul for some exploring and some more eating.
 This is Avery eating a bowl of onions. She also ate a little bit of rice, but she primarily ate handfuls of green onions for lunch. Could have been worse.

It was my first time eating Korean BBQ. They cook the meat for you on a little grill in the table, and bring out a bunch of sides. You pay for the kind of meat you want and the amount, and then the sides are just whatever specialty that restaurant does, and unlimited. Sides ranged from onions to kimchi to garlic and glass noodles, plus different chili sauces. Once the meat is done, you put the meat and whatever toppings you prefer onto a lettuce leaf, roll it all up and eat it. Delicious!!

In Seoul, we spent a few hours at the Children's Grand Park. It was a huge, gorgeous park in the middle of the city, somewhat similar to Central Park in NYC or Ueno Park in Tokyo. There is a (free) zoo, an amusement park, an interactive children' museum, botanical gardens, walking trails, icecream and coffee shops, and plenty of playgrounds. The heat and humidity cut our stay a little short, but you could easily spend all day there.

After a full morning of fun in Seoul, we went back to our hotel for a bit to relax and get out of the heat. 

Then it was on to a baseball game. Things were going great at first. Avery loved the subway. She loved the stadium. She loved the clapping (though she clearly had no idea why she was doing it). She loved the random food everyone around her shared with her. It was all going great until she folded herself up into her chair and got stuck. And then three days of late bedtimes and no naps caught up with her and we had to leave early. But it was great fun while it lasted!

All in all, super fun trip!! It is always fun seeing a new place and getting off island for awhile, but mostly it was so wonderful to catch up with good friends and spend some quality time together as a family. Thanks, Korea! And expecially thanks to Danielle and "dat boy!" Miss you already!


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