What's Up Wednesday: November '17

November 22, 2017

What I'm Eating This Week: Okay, so I mentioned before that I signed up for a meal plan called Better Bentos, which specializes in healthy meals. Some of the meals I have had this week include: spicy Thai curry with chicken, stir-fried prawns with peanut sauce, chili con carne, couscous with roasted vegetables, pumpkin soup with a side of quinoa, kale, sweet potatoes, and walnuts combined into a salad, and roasted chickpea salad. I actually love this meal plan! I would never have enough time to eat this well and prepare all of these meals on my own. For snacks, I have been having trail mix and healthy smoothies. The bad news is that Better Bentos is shutting down in a few weeks to redo their business, so we just have maybe three weeks left to get the meals sent to us. They will reopen, but they don't have a set date for that yet. On the weekends, I just have whatever. Last weekend that included McDonald's and lasagna with a glass of red wine.

What I'm Reminiscing About: My former first grade students are now third graders, and we are doing reading buddies this week at school. It just so happens that my new first grade students will be paired with my old students. It's crazy that now my old students will be the ones helping out and I'm so glad I'll get to see them in action helping younger students! I've been reminiscing about them being in first grade and thinking about what a wonderful class they were. 

What I'm Loving: I'm loving hopping on the train and getting out of Shanghai for a change! I went on weekend trips for the past two weekends; first to Nanjing and then to Hangzhou. I never knew how to book train tickets and thought it was a daunting process, but a friend told me how she did it and it's the easiest thing! With how well my last trips have gone, I'm inspired to do a lot more traveling over the weekends. 

What I've Been Up To: Well, I just did a recap post, and earlier this fall I did go on a trip to Myanmar

What I'm Dreading: Both of these things are a long way away, but I'm dreading having to take an online class next year to keep my teaching license. I'm a little bitter about it, honestly. Can I just please pay off my other student loans before I have to shell out thousands on another course? The other thing I'm dreading for the time being is life after China. There is no way I'm going to stay in China forever. I am worried about my finances after leaving here because teaching in the States is not as lucrative as it is here. I am also concerned about other teaching jobs. Will I be able to do them with my back injury? I think I can at this point, but I also don't want to injure my back further by overworking myself.

What I'm Working On: This is all work-related stuff. For example, I do need to decorate my classroom doors for Christmas soon! Any ideas? 

What I'm Excited About: For the first time in a long time, I don't have a travel buddy to go places with during Chinese New Year. All of my former travel buddies are back in the States now, and Tara will be going back to the States during that time. Other friends have asked me to go to Melbourne with them, but I've already traveled throughout Australia and would like to go somewhere new. Since I'm way too paranoid to travel alone after what happened to me two years ago while traveling, I think I'm going to take a look at Intrepid Tours. The thought of that is really exciting to me because I might be able to meet cool, new people and I haven't yet picked a destination. The feeling of not knowing where I'm going yet is kind of exhilarating when I think of the possibilities. 

What I'm Watching/Reading: I'm starting to watch New Girl again. I watched the first three seasons and then just kind of just got busy with life and forgot about the show, but the episodes are so entertaining and they're short as well, so I'm sure I'll be doing some binge watching to catch up. I'm also watching This is Us with two other teachers from my school. We get together every week and watch it together. I just got done watching Kevin's episode (Number 1) and had to fight back the tears. In between those, I'm watching Spartacus Season 2. A friend gave me them to watch when I was in the hospital, and I just never got around to it. 

For books, I mentioned in my last post that my friends and I are doing a small book club, starting with the book China Rich Girlfriend. I haven't had much time to read this week, but maybe tomorrow I'll try to catch up to my friends.

What I'm Listening To: Can I change this to what I'm about to listen to? A coworker lent me the latest Lana Del Ray CD, so I'm about to see how I like it!

What I'm Wearing: Everyone always says that when winter comes in Shanghai that it comes suddenly, and this year was no exception. It's full on winter weather here, so this week I took out my winter coat and blanket scarf. In my apartment, I'm always bundled up in a fleece and have broken out my Snoozies

What I'm Doing This Weekend: My friend is coming to Shanghai, so we have a full weekend planned. She wants to see the major sights and do all things touristy like go to the Bund at night, go up Pearl Tower, visit Yu Gardens, see the Jade Buddha Temple, and go to a tea house. Mostly, I'm looking forward to catching up with my friend, but I wonder if she will be shocked when she sees me because she hasn't seen me since before my injury. 

What I'm Looking Forward to Next Month: I'm excited to spend Christmas Day in Shanghai with friends this year. For my first two years in China, I traveled both times, so it will be nice to stay put this year. My friend is hosting a Christmas breakfast and lunch at her place and she's an excellent cook. She already described some of the menu and I can't even believe she knows how to cook all of that! 

That about sums up everything! I'd like to do a post soon with more details about my trip to Myanmar, so hopefully I can find the time. 
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