Boseong Green Tea Fields in South Korea

Hello everyone!

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter Sunday. Hard to believe Tom & I are back at work today and it’s already Monday here in Korea. We had a lovely weekend that consisted of an awesome hike in Wolchusan National Park, said “see ya lata!” to friends who finished teaching in Korea, visited the Green Tea Fields, Easter service at church, and started moving! I realize it’s been awhile since I’ve done a “As of lately” post, and I promise I’ll update you this week on what we have been up to lately. For now, I want to share a pretty little piece of our Saturday afternoon.

The Boseong Green Tea Fields have been on our “to-do” list for quite sometime…and on the way home from the hike Tom suggested we stop there and check it out. With everything turning vibrant green lately we thought it would be the perfect time! Boseong Green Tea plantation is located in Boseong, Jeollanamdo Province, SK. About an hour from Yeosu (by car.) It’s known for it’s Green Tea and the tall Cedar trees. We made our way around the Tea Fields in a big loop, up a hill, and then weaved in and out of the rows of tea plants to take in the beauty. There are little shops selling all kinds of Green Tea- powder form, loose leaf, and Tea Bags. Tom enjoyed the Green Tea Ice Cream. It’s a perfect weekend activity to stroll around and enjoy the warm spring weather. If you do get the chance to go I would suggest early morning or later afternoon & for those who are interested the Green Tea Festival takes place here from May 2-6th this year. We arrived around 4 and stayed for a couple hours to take photos, and stroll around. I imagine during midday it can get busy with people especially now that the warmer weather has arrived & if you’re anything like Tom you like to avoid the crowds of people 😉  We combined Saturday with the bridge hike in Wolchusan National Park (just 30 minutes away) and that worked out perfectly for timing. More on that later! For now… Some of our favorite Tea Field Pictures.

Tom and his Green Tea Ice Cream.

Tom and his Green Tea Ice Cream.

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Do you like Tea? Did you know that it grew in bush form like this?!

Surprises that warm the heart.

The days keep flying and I just keep wishing I had more time.

More time to read, write, work out, bake delicious food, travel, longer weekends, drink coffee, drink tea. Drink wine with my husband. I keep finding myself wishing for more time.  Our weekends here are precious and valued time that Tom and I spend together traveling Korea and (if we are lucky) sometimes with our friends!

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…and so when Tom and I were presented with the opportunity to volunteer at an International English camp a few weeks back we debated over if we would give up our “precious time” to spend a weekend with kids after working 40 hours with kids. – We all need breaks every now and then 😉 We had heard great things about the camp and decided: “What the heck! Let’s do it.”

So, three weeks ago Tom and I went with 40 other foreign English teachers to volunteer at an International English Camp about 2 hours away from our city of Yeosu. 200 Korean middle school students in grade two (equivalent to our 8th grade in America) lined the pavement holding signs and cheering as the foreign teachers got off the bus upon arrival at camp. This was only the beginning of a fun-filled weekend teaching the kids how to cook food from our native countries, playing games/sports, doing a talent show, having a massive bonfire (fireworks were included!), stargazing, and teaching them a little about the places we originally call home.The best part about this was being able to hang out and have fun with the middle school kiddos in a normal environment! No pressure of studying. Just conversation and having fun. I have talked a bit about the pressures that the kids have in Korea to study, perform, study, perform AND repeat. If you’re interested in learning what these kids go through or just grasp an understanding of our life as teachers in Korea click here for a short 20 minute documentary! The camp was a great opportunity for us to be immersed in the culture of Korea that we so dearly love while getting to know some of the most amazing kids in a fun environment.

It was a heart warming weekend to say the least.

At the end one of the boys gave a wonderful speech that made me cry. He said the camp had given him confidence to use his English in conversation without being scared. Through all the hard days of teaching…feeling like what we are doing isn’t making a difference… that I am not teaching them enough. It’s the moments like this volunteer English camp that reminded me sometimes it’s the little moments in life that make a difference. It’s the smiles, hugs, and love. It’s the company of spending time with kids. Just getting to know them. Having the opportunity at the International camp showed me that what we are doing CAN make an impact!

The weekend we spent with the kiddos was a weekend that warmed my heart. I realized how selfish I was initially to view it as giving up “my time” when the kids had done SO much to warm my heart during our weekend together.

What things have you been doing lately (or have others done for YOU!?!)  that warm your heart?