Monday, June 14, 2010


I know, we're a little MIA. But we're busy gallivanting around MN (and Colorado) for 4 weeks, visiting friends and family, soaking in the cooler weather, fishing in the BWCA, stocking up on things that are difficult to come by in Thailand, and enjoying eating at as many of our favorite restaurants as possible. Needless to say, I'm going on a blogging hiatus; I'll be back in mid-July. :) Cheers.

Friday, June 4, 2010


Today I am celebrating five wonderful years of marriage to my best friend, Mike. These past five years have been so precious and dear to me in more ways than I can possibly explain. God has richly blessed me with a husband that loves me deeply, but who loves the Lord even more. I am grateful for how Mike continually points me back to the beauty of the gospel and speaks truth to me each day. I am thankful for how Mike is aware of my needs, and patiently and tenderly deals with my (overly) sensitive and emotional heart. I stand in awe at how quick he is to apologize and extend forgiveness to me, how selfless and kind he is to me when I least deserve it, and for how he is truly the hands and feet of Jesus to me each day.

Happy 5th anniversary, Mikey. I love you.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

SALT memories

I just returned from a 4 day trip to Khao Yai (Big Mountain) with 80 wildly spirited freshman. On Monday we went to Lop Buri Army Camp for an obstacle course and team building activities. We also briefly visited the Narai Palace. On Tuesday we hiked through Khao Yai National Park and visited Huaew Narok Waterfall. It was great to get away from the pavement of Bangkok and see so much green! :) Wednesday was our service project day, so we visited 2 Thai schools where a group of students (who were trained prior to the trip) performed a drug free drama to the kids. After the performance, the rest of the students led small groups with drug free curriculum and games. Our students were definitely stretched and challenged in new ways. As we made our way back to ICS on Thursday, we stopped by Chok Chai Farm (a dairy/meat farm) and consumed tasty hamburgers, steaks, ice cream, and malts for lunch.

It was a busy 4 days; I am glad to be back and even more happy that tomorrow is the last day of school. However, there were great memories made on the trip, as well as a lot of growth in some students.

Favorite quotes (pertaining to the service project day):
"Mrs. Karly, was it this awkward when you first started teaching?"
"Those kids were so bad and they didn't listen to me. I am never going to be a teacher."
"Girls actually like me!"
"I'm famous! People were asking for my autograph... I can't wait to go the next school!"

Funny memories:
When we hiked through Khao Yai National Park, we actually had to wear "leech socks" and do periodic leech checks. Some of these kids were absolutely terrified at the thought of leeches and the hour long hike (these kids do not spend time outdoors (it's too hot) and they do not exercise either). As we were putting on our leech socks and getting ready for the hike, one of my students came up to me with his leech socks on, a jacket with the hood securely fastened to his head, a hat on top, a blanket around his shoulders, and said, "Mrs. Karly, I'm sooooooo scaaaaaaared! I'm soooooo scared of the leeches. Don't let them get me!!"

Student: My leech sock won't stay up
Headmaster: We'll cut off the fastener off and then you can just tie it up. [cuts off fastener]
Student: Mrs. Karly, will you help me with my leech sock?
Me: Sure...[tying the sock up]... have I cut off your circulation yet? Just kidding!
Student: No, tie it tighter... then you'll cut off my circulation and there won't be any blood for the leech to get.

The first night I fell asleep before "lights out" but apparently the girls were up giggling and screaming. The next they were significantly more tired (after a long day of being outside and doing a little hiking) and we thought they'd go to sleep quickly, but I decided to be firm and lay down the law anyway since some of the girls had complained about how loud some people were the previous night...

Teacher: You girls must have been tired last night... you were so quiet!
Girls: No... we were actually just afraid of Mrs. Karly.

Other highlights of the trip:
-Sharing my testimony and later have a 2 hour long conversation with a student who felt comfortable enough to talk to me about obstacles in his life because I was real with him the first night.
- Watching some students do an incredible job working with the kids at the Thai schools
-Several of my students speaking to me in Spanish during the trip... and not because they had to.
-Seeing the kids stretched and out of their comfort zone.
-Observing brokenness on the last day as kids came to realizations about their own faith and life.