• Surfer walks among rocks at Blue Point beach, Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia
    Bali, Blog, Home Display, Indonesia, Photo Friday, Travel

    Photo Friday: Bali’s Blue Point

    There’s this thing I do sometimes with places I’ve visited…I close my eyes and conjure up a colorful mental snapshot of the place. In my memory, for example, London is all white and matte grays. Nice, France on the other hand is muted orange and sandy browns. And Bali is pure blue. Have you ever noticed that? That an entire place can be summed up in a single color or two? David and I ended…

  • Thai students smile with TEFL teacher in a classroom in Chiang Mai, Thailand
    Blog, Home Display, Teaching, Thailand

    Last Day of School

    By Alexis Well, it’s official! I finished a year of teaching English in Thailand. It’s crazy to think how fast this school year went by…I started back in June and remember feeling like March was sooo far away. And now here we are! To be totally honest, there were a lot of times throughout the year where I considered quitting, but now that I’ve made it, I’m glad that I stuck it out. On Friday, the…

  • A child monk walks across the street in Luang Prabang, Laos
    Blog, Home Display, Laos, Photo Friday

    Photo Friday: Child Monk Crossing

    By Alexis I’m back! Sorry for the delay in doing these Photo Friday posts the last couple weeks. I had a family emergency and had to take a last-minute flight back to the States, but luckily David was able to keep the blog going while I was away. For those curious, everything turned out okay back home and now I’m back in Thailand, worry-free :) Since I took a little hiatus, I wanted to make sure…

  • Young girl dressed in a firefighter uniform smiles in Chiang Mai, Thailand
    Blog, Home Display, Teaching, Thailand

    “I Want to Play With Fire!”

    By Alexis One of the biggest things I’ve had to learn as a ESL teacher in Thailand is flexibility. Here, plans change by the minute and you’re expected to just go with the flow, being perpetually ready at a moment’s notice (traits that don’t come naturally to a Type-A overthinker like me). One day this week, I had just handed out worksheets to a 2nd grade class and was having them write their names up…

  • Ponds Sunscreen Thailand
    Blog, Home Display, Life, Thailand

    Funny Mistakes Happen When You Don’t Speak Thai

    By Alexis I have been using Clean & Clear facewash for nearly a decade, but when we moved to Thailand I knew that I’d run out of it eventually. When that day finally came recently, I was desperate for a replacement. I couldn’t find my exact wash anywhere in Chiang Mai, and decided to look for a different brand at this random beauty shop that’s on my way home from work. Since I am completely indecisive, I went…

  • Young scouts salute the camera in Chiang Mai, Thailand
    Blog, Home Display, Teaching, Thailand

    Photos: The Cutest Scouts in Thailand

    By Alexis Fields trips! One of the many perks of teaching English at a public school instead of a language institute. Since I teach at a government-run elementary school here in Chiang Mai, Thailand, I recently got the chance to go on a scouting field trip with the first graders (learn how I landed the TEFL job here). I was stoked because: A) I really love hanging out with my students outside the classroom, and B) Who…

  • Sports Day Chiang Mai, Thailand
    Blog, Home Display, Teaching, Thailand

    Sports Day in Thailand (or The Biggest Field Day Ever)

    By Alexis Kindergarteners wearing heels, first graders wearing fake eyelashes, award ceremonies with legit medals, bleachers with massive banners, team chants — Sports Day in Thailand is quite the spectacle. Once a year, each school in Thailand has a Sports Day where the students are grouped into teams that compete against each other in various sports (at my school, the big events were cheerleading and running). Now here I am, two months later, writing about my school’s Sports Day that happened on…

  • Blog, Gili Islands, Home Display, Indonesia, Lombok, Travel

    Gili Air: Three Steps to Paradise

    By Alexis For our last big vacation, we traveled through Malaysia, Indonesia, and southern Thailand, and during one leg of the trip, we met a friendly German guy who’d been on the road for months. Tanned skin, wild hair, he was the kind of guy who literally did not own shoes because he’d been living the island life for so long. We got to talking and it turned out he was getting his dive master certification out…

  • Man stands in front of Skogafoss Waterfall in southern Iceland
    Blog, Home Display, Iceland, Photo Friday, Travel

    Photo Friday: Icelandic Waterfall

    By Alexis Since moving to Thailand we have spent a lot of time in hot, humid environments, and sometimes, when I’m dripping sweat in an AC-less restaurant while swatting at mosquitos and chugging room temperature water, I find myself daydreaming about this magical country we once visited: Iceland. Iceland is one of those places you travel to that you just can’t stop thinking about after you’ve left. (Can you tell I like Iceland?) It’s so…different than any other place I’ve…

  • Insider tips for Chiang Mai's Lantern Festival
    Blog, Home Display, Thailand, Travel

    Insider Tips for Thailand’s Lantern Festival

    By Alexis Before moving to Thailand, I remember drooling over a friend’s photos of an amazing festival…10,000 candlit lanterns filled the night sky while people on the ground gazed upward, drenched in a gorgeous amber light. It was like something out of a Disney movie… So when David and I moved to Chiang Mai last spring, we knew that seeing this for ourselves was at the top of our bucket list. A couple days ago, we got that opportunity. The festival — called Loi Krathong/Loy Krathong or…

  • A beautiful day at Wat Monthian in Chiang Mai's Old City
    Blog, Home Display, Teaching, Thailand, Travel

    True Stories From Thailand (part 3)

    By Alexis In a first grade class… Me [to one of the more rambunctious kids]: Are you going to be a super student today? Student: No! Super gorilla! [pounds fists on chest] Mid-shower on a normal Thursday evening, the water in our apartment started sputtering then just completely shut off. Not a drip left. Poor David had shampoo in his hair and was totally lathered in soap. Luckily we had a few extra water bottles in the…

  • English language posters in TEFL elementary school in Chiang Mai, Thailand
    Blog, Home Display, Teaching, Thailand, Travel, Work

    Helpful (and Free!) Resources for Teaching ESL

    By Alexis Since I started teaching English as a second language (ESL) at an elementary school here in Chiang Mai, Thailand, I have gathered quite the collection of sites to help me in my lesson planning. Recently I’ve found myself using the same handful of resources again and again, so I thought it would be helpful to list those here for any other ESL teachers out there. I teach English to grades 1, 2, and 3 (focusing on phonics…