Saturday, December 29, 2007

Merry Christmas

We are happy to be back in the U.S.A!! Thanks to my mom and niece and nephew for picking us up at the airport. We have had a great time being back home! It was great seeing my sisters ( can't wait to see you Katie ) and our nieces and nephews! It was my birthday on the 24th and had a great time at Simple Simon's and the Mission Inn. I love having my birthday with my family, thankyou! We had a great time with family on Christmas Eve and Christmas and loved seeing all the family. We have finally adjusted to California time and have enjoyed seeing how much things have changed here. We don't have a wireless connection so our pictures will have to wait. We leave for Utah on the 3rd and will try to upload more after that! We love being home and look forward to working with honest, educated, trained people ( if you heard about the school we were at than you understand)! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Goodbye my love

We are so sad to say we are waiting in the Taipei airport to go home!! We had a great time in Thailand, crazy as ever and will have tons of stories and pictures to share. We spent our last days getting everything ready and organized and will board the plane in about an hour. We have had such an amazing time here and have really grown to love it. We are excited to come home and see our friends and family, especially my brand new beautiful nephew Quinn! We will be glad to be home and are ready to start the Christmas season ( they have NO idea how to do it here)! Goodbye Taiwan!! ( But not forever)

Saturday, December 8, 2007

We are OFF!!!

So we left our school and with some help from wonderful friends in Taipei ( letting us leave our luggage ) we are in the International airport with one hour counting. THAILAND! This has been one of my top three places to see and I can't wait. We are staying in Bangkok for a few days and then going down south to the most amazing beaches known! Our trip is economical, meaning we are backpacking and sleeping in a hammock on the roof. It should be awesome. We are so sad to see our stay here in the Far East come to a temporary end. It has been an amazing experience and we have really loved it. Saying goodbye was pretty hard and we are still in a state of denial about our departure. Don't get us wrong we will be happy to see family and friends and brand new nephew and nieces! We are already planning our trip back here. When we get back to the Sates we will be sure to update the rest of our pictures and our trip to Thailand. Mom/Sisters don't worry we wont take any packages from friends/strangers (thanks to the movie Broke Down Palace)

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Temple Trip

We had talked about going to this temple ever since we came here and it took a few months but we made it. It turned out to be a good thing we waited because it was a special worshiping day her. We were able to walk all around the temple ( temples it turned out to be a lot) and see the people worshiping. It was a big celebration and there were lights and every time a group comes into worship the band outside plays the drums and they set off fireworks. It was really neat. The temple was really old and had amazing detail in every section. The people were really nice and let us have free access to pictures and video which is great for a foreigner. The temples were more than a block long and we couldn't tell how wide they went. Each room had their Gods in them. They worship ( from what Caleb knows, I can see and what we have asked) by giving gifts, this includes food, fruit, soda, chickens, by burning fake money, incense, and their own prayers or worship. It was really beautiful temple with all the detail and made for a really fun show!

We MADE it

So we made it. After the little training I did and the zero training Caleb did we accomplished the 21 km. It was in the Toroko Gordge which is beautiful and amazing as well as unforgiving. The course was brutal and is known for its killer hills ( however we did not know this until right before the race). It was a lot of fun with thousands of people and 163 foreigners including ourselves. We went with the English ward in Taipei. Caleb and I were able to run/crawl uphill most of the way which was nice and encouraging. I finished at 2 hr and 11 mins and Caleb finished about 6 mins after me. If you know me you know I love running and accomplishing this with Caleb was a blast. We were dead after that and Caleb could hardly walk but were ready for more!!

Friday, November 30, 2007

You should have seen it

We had a great time at Liu Lake. It was really big and beautiful. The mountains looked just like Hawaii and it was perfect weather. We rented a swan paddle boat and had a lot of fun!

This is how they roll

So we were driving to the Liu lake and saw this. I thought it was awesome. A few things about driving in Taiwan:
*left turns-first comes first serve, you get in the intersection and go fast
* yellow lights- a go for anyone
* ambulance/police car- lights or siren you keep on going
* helmets- a must, fastening it is up to you
* scooter- lowest on the chain, but can get around anything at anytime. Usually fits 4-5
* Honking- just to let people know you will NOT be stopping as you run the red light

Saving Grace

We made it! COSTCO!!! We took a trip to Taipei ( 4 hour train ride) and the MRT a taxi and a little walk but we made it. Walking into COSTCO was like walking into America ( aside from the hundreds of Taiwanese people) We bought some muffins, bagels, cream cheese, snack pack cheese sticks, and chips. We couldn't buy anything that needed to be frozen but it was amazing. Three stories full of good 'ol American food. We spent quite some time in there and really enjoyed it. We even got a Chinese COSTCO bag for $1.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

We had a happy Thanksgiving here in Taiwan. We celebrated with a nice hot pot dinner and Mai Dang Lao's ( Mc Donald's) sundae! Here are some things we are thankful for: ( in no order)
Carpet, Forks, Knives, Spoons, Toilets ( the kind you can sit on) grocery stores, hot showers, clean room (no living and growing mold!), cars, cell phones, traffic enforcement, police officers that do their jobs, washing machines, clothes dryers, ovens, heaters, skype, Target stores, wood and bricks, non-title ceilings, Mexican food, American food, American Chinese food, sewer systems, not living next to a chicken coop, watching corn and rice grow (its amazing) Clean air, real apartments, common language, the hills on the Internet, not living on a roof, not living in a storage container, a church that is the same in every country, dan bings, mango bing sha, egg holds the rice, noodles, Top Bakery- having a VIP card to Top, $100 kuai sales, cute Taiwanese shoes and shirts and jackets- shopping in Taiwan, onion oil biscuits, shaved noodles, ice monster, $6 U.S. antibiotics, free hotel pens, fruit- apple pears, kiwi, my favorite Japanese fruit, mango, dragon fruit, COSTCO ( yep in Taiwan) We are grateful for the experiences and adventures we have had here in Taiwan. Up until this week we were planning on staying but we are excited to come home for awhile. We will be back in a few years!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Three Hour Drive

We drive down the coast to make it to the bridge! It was a beautiful drive ( minus the bugs and butterflies in your face). We pounded the wind and made it to the bridge in three hours. We stopped at the Tropic of Cancer and checked that out. Only to walk across it and back before we had to face the drive again! I saw the bridge when we first got here and wanted to go. It was a really fun trip and ride, but man were we tired when we got home and had to go to the Halloween parade!


Taiwan does not celebrate Halloween, unless there are some Americans. All the schools that have English get dressed up and have a parade downtown. Our lesson was on making a witches brew with noodles as brains. We went all out and the kids were terrified, we even made one student cry! The parade was fun and everyone loved to scream at us! After we went to a movie with some friends and Caleb got a few weird looks!!

Ken Ding

We had a really fun time in Ken Ding. The water was amazing and we had a great time snorkeling until we saw a five foot sea snake and I had enough! So we played in the water like the Taiwanese... hence the inter tube. We went on a water banana, water tube and water taco with our friends earlier and that was a lot of fun too!

Natural Gas

This is Ken Ding at the National Park. The ground is filled with natural gas and the fires burn all the time. We cooked an egg and watched some fireworks. Most of the flames were blue but came out yellow in this picture.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


We painted our living area. It was really "fun" sanding off the dead bugs and mold! The green our boss chose ended up looking ok, especially if you are a really old. ( it reminds everyone of a grandma's house) Caleb did all the hard work but it looks tons better now!!

Some train ride

This is after a 3 hour train ride with no seats! We sat on the steps next to the door! Just look at all those people who got off the train!!!

SHHHH!! We found the LOST hour!

So we were walking along the streets of Taipei, making fun of the shirts and signs that have English letters but not necessarily English words. Then we found this pool hall. And we thought there was only 24 HOURS a day!

National Palace Museum

This is at the National Palace Museum. It was really big and had a lot of plates and bowls. All of the things inside were what the people brought over when the fled from China. It was really neat to see some many parts of history that were so old. The most famous art piece is a rock that looks like a piece of bacon. It really does look like a slice of bacon! Outside the museum was a really beautiful park and this is where we took the picture.

Night Market

This is at the Shurlin night market. It is the most famous night market and has thousands of people. This is just one little alley but it is blocks wide and long. We had a lot of fun here. The vendors that sell out of trunks and such are illegal so every so often someone will just start to pack up and run and all the other vendors do it within seconds! It is so exciting to see them escape the cops!


This is outside a building for the workers to break or meditate.

Tzu Chi

This is the Tzu Chi Buddhist Temple. It has a really pretty walk way and garden all around it. Inside it's like a museum where you can walk around and read about their goals and mission and all the work they have done all over the world. It was really neat. Caleb and I got our very own VIP tour, we walked all around in any room we liked!

Friday, November 2, 2007

In case you wondered

Hot Pots

Proof, Mom! I am eating just fine! Here we are at the Hot Pots. And yes that is meat! Pork and I ate it all! They have hot pots in the states but you boil the water and cook your food to your liking. It is really good!

Our Jungle

This is up the mountains right behind our house. We hiked up for hours and found some really cool waterfalls, with the help of an old man and woman who climbed up the rocks like they were half their age... they had to keep stopping just so we could keep up with them. We went swimming ( in the freezing cold fresh water) and listened to the monkeys talk. This is a path that leads to nothing! It has been taken over by the plants and you can't walk too far. It is really beautiful and has some really pretty trees and plants!

Japanese Bunkers

Here is one of the hundreds of Japanese bunkers. They are all over the island. This picture is taken at Seven Star Beach. It was really pretty and we had a fun day exploring and finding new things.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Holiday KTV

This is us at the Holiday KTV- Karaoke TV! You pay for a day and get your own private room, with a wrap around couch, all you can eat buffet including ice cream. And you get to sing your heart out! Caleb and I had a really great time!! As my dear sister mentioned, we prefer to NOT update our blog until we are satisfied with enough comments. We love the comments and really enjoy reading them, especially when there is more than one! So please feel free to leave a comment or two. We are running the half- marathon tomrrow so wish us luck! We will have a ton of pictures to update so keep checking!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Chiang Kai Shek

This is a stone path that is used for foot masage. Traditional culture believes that the feet hold the health for the whole body. It was really painful! That's as far as I made it! This is a picture of one of the parks ponds. They had tons of these all over the park with lilly pads and turtles and coy fish!

Chiang Kai Shek

Here we are at the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall. This is us at the front gate. Most of it is under construction so we could not go on top or see the changing of the guards. We had a great time here and could easily spend a week here without seeing everything. There were people worshiping in the gardens and doing Tai Chi and dancing.

Eating Good in the Neighborhood

This is a famous street for its eats! The one on the left is the ice monster and the one on the right is the most amazing food. Its a onion oil tortilla with eggs and sauce. It is incredible. We were in Taipei for four days and we ate there 3 days in a row!

Taipei 101

This is the 101! The tallest building in the world ( Dubai has one that will be taller but it is not in use yet so there!) It has the fastest elevators, from the ground floor to the 89th floor it takes 37 seconds! The sign on the 101 was to get the U.N. to offically recognize Taiwan, but the U.N. shot that down. We went to the 91st floor to the outdoor observatory and were able to see all of Taipei. The wind was blowing so hard it made a whistling sound through the rails.

Taipei Temple

Here we are at the Taipei Temple and stake center. The bulidings are beautiful. The stake center has 7 floors to it and a distrubition center in the basement!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Story Time

One night we were very hungry and decided to go out for dinner. We found a little hole in the wall on the side of the street downtown. Taiwan's way is if there is not enough seats then you sit with other people. So we sat with some kids our age two sisters and a brother. Behind us were their very drunk parents and their friends. The friendly drunk people decided to take us under their wings and buy us drinks. Without realizing it they had bought us each a bottle of Taiwan Beer. It is very rude to decline someone's gift but Caleb told them no about 10 times before we got them to realize we were not going to drink it. While all this is going on one very drunk man tells Caleb a dirty joke. Caleb told teased him about being a wicked man and told him we were LDS. The man pointed to one of the ladies at the table andsays she does something with the church. The lady turned bright red. It was a really funny night and the people had us laughing the whole time. The lady turned out to be the pilates instructor that does a class at the church that I ended up attending. Taiwan is a small world too!

Sunday, September 2, 2007


This is the memorial for those all the workers that died on the intermountain highway.

Our trip to Taroko

This is the entry to Taroko National Park. When we stopped to take some pictures we were mobbed by a pack of Taiwanese from Taibei. They took about 10 pictures with each of them taking an opportunity to get a close up with the foreigners. The one we took is on top. It was a really beautiful day. We encourage you to comment.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

The Anchor of Our Love

Our Sweet Ride in Aruba

We decided to take a dive off of our boat on a snorkel cruise. The crowd was amazed at our skills! It was a rope swing on a whole new level!

Sunset in Paradise

This is the beach outside our hotel. The sunset was amazing every night!


This is the view from our hotel in Aruba! We had the best view. This was the weather for all eight days. Things are a little different now!