Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The First Pep Rally Ever

So yesterday we had the inaugural pep rally at our school! Making history, baby! Many students were not familiar with the term "pep rally". It went pretty smoothly for a first time. We even had our sweet jazz band jazzin' it up. Classic! I'm afraid I made a fool of myself while singing in a strangely large blue wig, massively oversized basketball shorts and jersey and other accessories, but it was worth it, and it was fun. Anyway, this was the movie I played at it. You are welcome to have a look...but beware, these Lions have some mad skills!! Roar. :)

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

House Guest and House Arrest

Hey all. There is a noted gap since my last writing. Chinese New Year has come and gone, though many of us are still basking in a nice week of holidays from work. It hasn't turned out exactly as I had planned. I was hoping to get lots of planning and marking done in the first few days, and then welcome my friend Sherri to town and continue on to tear up the concrete jungle for the remaining days of the holiday!
Turns out my body had a different adventure in mind for me over the break, and I definitely feel the grace (but disappointment) of being unwell during time off from school. It's a strange kind of virus (we think?) that has my legs and arms numb and tingly, and has left me really tired and generally not feeling that great. I know, it sounds a bit weird, but I'm doing okay. Tests came back normal, so I'm just trying to take it easy, take my vitamins, and maybe the next step is Chinese medicine! I hope whatever it is decides to pack up and go on its merry way really soon. :)
However, the best thing is that Sherri is here! Ah, she's a fun, fun gal. We haven't done much exploring but we're finding fun in small Photobooth and becoming expert dancers in every genre of music in my Itunes Library. The pictures below are inspired by "I've Had the Time of My Life" and, I really don't know about the last one....maybe something from Shrek?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Valentines Day 2007

It has been a love-ly day, though I'm reeeeally tired! One of my students gave me two roses to start the day, and to end the day another student gave me such a sweet Valentine. On the front it simply said- "Miss McMillan: I Love You". Now that's pretty cool. I gave out chocolate kisses and real hugs to anyone who would take one, so there was no shortage of love in the classroom!
Another staff member kindly thought of the single ladies and gave each one a rose. On an interesting and funny note, I was also left with a note from a secret admirer. Ha, ha! I'm serious though. It was poetic and remains anonymous. Ooooh, the drama!
I came over to my friends' place for pizza and now I'm hanging out at their place while Hunter (their 9 month old) sleeps and they enjoy an evening together.
So, Hunter is my special Valentine this year! Check out the Valentine he gave me! Awwwww. Happy Valentine's Day, friends!

Sunday, February 11, 2007


(Exhibit A)

Sunday Night

I think I've said this before, but the weekends are the best here in HK. Not to say the weeks are bad, it's just that the weekends are really good. On Friday night I tried Lebanese food. It was excellent. The Egyptian restaurant in town is still my all time favorite, but this had similar flavors and was very tasty. Saturday I had tennis lessons again, and then on both Saturday and Sunday afternoon I watched the Davis Cup- Hong Kong edition. It was HK vs. Indonesia. HK lost both of the matches I watched, seemingly not due to being less skilled but because of unforced errors. The Indonesians had a rocking fan base, maybe that was the difference!
I'm in the midst of planning a pep rally. It's been 7 years since my pep rally days! I'm trying to remember all of the goofy things we did at FWJ. Those were the good days, I tell you. We had some serious school spirit! Anyway, now that we're in the 2000's pep rallies have taken on a new look- the way of the home-made video. Gotta stay hip, so first thing on the list is to start producing something magical. Ha ha.
Enjoy your Sunday, friends!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Oink, Oink.

Happy Year of the Pig. I was reading people's predictions on the Year of the Pig today. Some say pigs are lazy and fat, therefore it's going to be a bad year for Hong Kong. Others say pigs are lovely, cute and adorable, so it's going to be a squishable and adorably prosperous year for Hong Kong. Pigs have become a normal part of the decor. Yesterday my friend showed me her new kicks- Nikey oldschools with an embroidered pig. These ones are even better- I've got to buy myself a pair of these beauties! Nike is all about embracing cultural tradition, clearly. Starbucks is in on the Chinese New Year festivities, too. The only red packets I'm hoping for this year are the ones that are filled with Starbucks money! Ha ha. (Red packets are little envelopes with money that people give to one another during Chinese New Year)
Speaking of Starbucks, tonight I thought they were secretly filming for Rush Hour 3. Across the table there were two men, with suspicious looking brown manila envelopes. They kept whispering to each other, staring down at the table, trying to convince the mobile to ring. Shifty eyes, very shifty eyes- I was sure they were waiting for Jackie Chan and Chris Rock to jump out and interrupt the big deal. Oh, it was funny. Finally they left, bags and envelopes in hand. Don't worry, you'll see it all when Rush Hour 3 hits theatres- watch for me, the amused Canadian in the backdrop, latte in hand.
I was going home on the bus tonight and the view from the second deck was something else. I'm trying to think of ways to describe the massive ocean of humans filling up one particular street- likely the most crowded street in the city. Okay, let's stick to the Riders. It was like the crowds spilling out after the Labour Day Classic, except instead of green everywhere you see black, and instead of a high percentage of drunk, loud people, everyone is escaping the madness of the human cyclone by either talking on their cel phones or listening to Cantopop in their mp3 player. To be honest, it kind of made me woozy watching all the people tonight! Usually I'm in the thick of it and I zone out with my ipod, but it looked crazy from the bus! In moments like that, I transport myself to Highway 48, driving to Grandma's house. Ahhh, I can breathe again. Freedom!
One day and one week until our Chinese New Year holiday arrives. My buddy Sherri Kasper is on her way to help me ring in the Year of the Pig! Saweeet!
Time for bed! Good night from the land of fat, lazy pigs! No wait, make that cute, adorable pigs. That's better.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Let's stop here...

I enjoy an hour at Starbucks with a lovely friend, Kara, every couple of weeks. She has the best Australian accent, beautiful children, and a warm heart. We've been reading through Brother Lawrence's "Practicing God's Presence"- the easy version. We were going to talk about the second conversation. However, we got stuck on the first sentence:
"Brother Lawrence explained how love, rather than selfish goals, had always steered his life."
That's more than enough for me this week. This month? Year? This life?
Let's start with today. God, let love be my one strong motive today.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Molecules...or Fish Balls

Culture is great and often funny when it shows up in the classroom. The other day we were building models of molecules in class. It was marvelous! I never dreamed chemistry could be so enjoyable. As some of the kids finished their models, I started hearing rumors of fish balls for sale. Yes, the models were no longer molecules, but mouthwatering fish balls on sticks. They were going fast. Another kid pipes up, "Hey, can I get some curry sauce with those fish balls, please?!" I bet you never dreamed of curry fish balls when you were in Grade 5! I'll stick to my KD for lunch, thanks.

Friday, February 02, 2007


In the past couple of years, I have felt challenged to "let the fruits of the spirit flow generously through me". It's become a banner phrase for me, especially when I find myself, all too often, becoming self-absorbed- with my time, money, space, with me. I have some wonderful examples of "generous living" in my life, for which I am so thankful. These simple thoughts came to mind.

generous in living
generous in loving
generous in time
generous in spirit
generous in energy
generous in relationships
generous in gifts
generous in talents
generous in fruit
love, faith, hope, patience and peace
generous in all of these
generous redemption
generous life
generous love
has been given to me

matthew 5.48
Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.