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“This is Me”

19 Jan


The Selfish Side of Love

17 Jan

“Love is Kind”

“Love is Joy”

Love is Selfless.

With love, though comes its mate. Its match. Its darling. 

And To be loved. That is ‘I.’

To be loved is greedy.

To be loved is lonely.

To be loved is desperate. 

To be loved.

To be the center of someone’s universe.

To be the one they call first.  And last.

To be thought of.

To be treasured.

To be missed.

To be remembered

To be kissed. Not just as a kiss, but as the kiss.

To be the final lover.  The final date. The final crush.

To be their ‘one and only.’ 

To be the one they can’t get over.

To be the one they gaze at and can’t look away from.

To be the one that makes them stumble over words.

To be the muse behind the painting. The memory before the poem. The spark within the book. The note that caused the song.

To be the one they lie beside when life has come and gone.

To be the one they’ll never leave. 

To be the one who gets their love.  To be loved.

Each of us desperate.



Each wanting to be loved with the love of legends. 

After all. . . . . 

Love is loyal.

Love is faithful.

Love is gentle.

Love is precious.

Love sees no flaws. Love finds no faults.

Love is kind.

Love is joy.

Love is selfless.

To be loved . . . . oh . . . . to be loved. 





#Chinese Numbers 1 to 100!

17 Jan
Image result for chinese hand numbers
Image Borrowed from China Highlights
0 Líng
1 Yī   

**also called “Yao” if using a series of numbers like a phone number or room number or something.  But if you’re like “I want one soda” it’s Yi.

2 Èr

** also called “Liang” (两) sometimes. In my experience, it’s usually when you are talking about things. Like “I want two sodas” = “Wǒ yào liǎng gè Cola”



3 sān

**Sounds similar to the word for death. Unlucky number. Many students prefer not to be in the 4th group, in the 4th chair, etc. Best to accomodate them.

6 liù
9 Jiǔ
10 Shí
11 十一 Shí yī
12 十二 Shí èr
13 十三 Shí sān
14 十四 Shí sì
15 十五 Shí wǔ
16 十六 Shí liù
17 十七 Shí qī
18 十八 Shí bā
19 十九 Shí jiǔ
20 二十 Èr shí
21 二十一 Èr shí yī
22 二十二 Èr shí èr
23 二十三 Èr shí sān
24 二十四 Èr shí sì
25 二十五 Èr shí wǔ
26 二十六 Èr shí liù
27 二十七 Èr shí qī
28 二十八 Èr shí bā
29 二十九 Èr shí jiǔ
30 三十 Sān shí
31 三十一 Sān shí yī
32 三十二 Sān shí èr
33 三十三 Sān shí sān
34 三十四 Sān shí sì
35 三十五 Sān shí wǔ
36 三十六 Sān shí liù
37 三十七 Sān shí qī
38 三十八 Sān shí bā
39 三十九 Sān shí jiǔ
40 四十 Sì shí
41 四十一 Sì shí yī
42 四十二 Sì shí èr
43 四十三 Sì shí sān
44 四十四 Sì shí sì
45 四十五 Sì shí wǔ
46 四十六 Sì shí liù
47 四十七 Sì shí qī
48 四十八 Sì shí bā
49 四十九 Sì shí jiǔ
50 五十 Wǔ shí
51 五十一 Wǔ shí yī
52 五十二 Wǔ shí èr
53 五十三 Wǔ shí sān
54 五十四 Wǔ shí sì
55 五十五 Wǔ shí wǔ
56 五十六 Wǔ shí liù
57 五十七 Wǔ shí qī
58 五十八 Wǔ shí bā
59 五十九 Wǔ shí jiǔ
60 六十 Liù shí
61 六十一 Liù shí yī
62 六十二 Liù shí èr
63 六十三 Liù shí sān
64 六十四 Liù shí sì
65 六十五 Liù shí wǔ
66 六十六 Liù shí liù
67 六十七 Liù shí qī
68 六十八 Liù shí bā
69 六十九 Liù shí jiǔ
70 七十 Qī shí
71 七十一 Qī shí yī
72 七十二 Qī shí èr
73 七十三 Qī shí sān
74 七十四 Qī shí sì
75 七十五 Qī shí wǔ
76 七十六 Qī shí liù
77 七十七 Qī shí qī
78 七十八 Qī shí bā
79 七十九 Qī shí jiǔ
80 八十 Bā shí
81 八十一 Bā shí yī
82 八十二 Bā shí èr
83 八十三 Bā shí sān
84 八十四 Bā shí sì
85 八十五 Bā shí wǔ
86 八十六 Bā shí liù
87 八十七 Bā shí qī
88 八十八 Bā shí bā
89 八十九 Bā shí jiǔ
90 九十 Jiǔ shí
91 九十一 Jiǔ shí yī
92 九十二 Jiǔ shí èr
93 九十三 Jiǔ shí sān
94 九十四 Jiǔ shí sì
95 九十五 Jiǔ shí wǔ
96 九十六 Jiǔ shí liù
97 九十七 Jiǔ shí qī
98 九十八 Jiǔ shí bā
99 九十九 Jiǔ shí jiǔ
100 一百  Yì  bǎi

#Smoking Snowman

15 Jan

​Apparently the delivery guys at #KFC were feeling cold yesterday. ⛄️❄️  Temps are getting towards -23C

Not sure how much help he’s gonna be today. . . . . 😜

I love that he’s still got his #cigarette 😂  

Little Lost Livvy Bear

13 Jan

This is my face about 90% of the time while living abroad 😜
Dictionaries? ✅ (4)

Maps? ✅ (2)

Chinese App? ✅ (6 and counting)

Students Phone Numbers for Emergencies? ✅ 

Sadness, #Chinese still is Such a complex #language!  Even after 4 years!

***Even the sign is probably wrong, poor Livvy Bear!!

Ordering Take-Out via #Alipay

13 Jan

Using #Alipay to order #TakeOut Food in #China 😊 🍴

IMAGE 1 – Placing your order

1. Open Aliplay

2. Choose the ‘e’ that says ‘Take-Out’

3. On the next page you’ll see a longlist of restaurants offering services. #pizzahut  is in my picture.  But you Also have #KFC #mcdonalds #burgerking #Chinesefood and more! (YES, MCDONALD’S DELIVERS IN CHINA!). 

4. Pick the place you want. 

5. The next page will have a list of #food offered with pictures (THREE CHEERS FOR PICTURES!!!)😜

6. Click the + symbol next to what you want. It goes into your cart.

7. When You’re done, Click the green button on the bottom of the screen.

IMAGE 2 – Paying & Address

8. The next screen is important. 

  At the top you’ll see a box with the location symbol (marked 1 on the second picture I posted). CLICK this box. 

9. For the first time, ask a #Chinese speaker to add the address (and other popular addresses) for you. It will save it in a list.  In the future just pick the address you want it delivered to from the list.

10. Check the estimated delivery time right below the location button (Mine says 18:22 because #China uses 2400 time.)

11. If You’re Happy Click the Green button on the bottom and pay. 

IMAGE 3 – Tracking Delivery

12. Go back to the home screen of Alipay – Choose ‘e’ for take-out again

13. You’re back to the List of restaurants. On the bottom toolbar, You’ll see a Square (2nd button) that I circled in pink. Click it.

14. Now you’re on a List of orders You’ve made. Choose the Chinese words next to the order. 

15.  Tada! Now you have the estimated delivery time and a gps map showing you where the driver is.


16. They usually call you when they arrive at your door.  I Can’t speak Chinese well 😭 so I text them ‘你好.我来了’ which means basically ‘Hi, I’m on my way’. Can’t promise It’s accurate Chinese, but they always understand it. 😊

You DON’T have to pay the driver, delivery fees were in the original cost 😊

It’s several steps and tricky to figure out, but I was starving a while back and learned on my own of necessity 😜🍴

Hope it helps someone else!! ❤️

#travel #tech #Technology #foodie #hungry #fastfood #delivery #International #lifeabroad #apps 

Success ≠ Smart. Success = Effort + Time + Determination

10 Jan

Success 3.jpg

Students often complain to me that they don’t feel “smart” enough to compete against their peers — either in the school system or later in their careers. They worry they don’t have the skills, the knowledge, or the ability to do what they want to do.

Over and over, I hear the same argument in my classroom — “But I’m just not one of the smart kids. I can’t get an A.”

However, success (in my experience) is rarely dependent on intelligence or mental ability. Sure, being smart may make Success easier — but it doesn’t determine if success occurs. Success depends on a willingness to put in the work, the time, theattention, and the heart. I have learned that there are very few things the average person cannot learn to do WELL, if they are willing to really try.

I recently had a conversation with a student who was unhappy with the group she had been assigned to — “None of us are A students. We don’t have a smart team member, and I want a good grade.” I asked and found out her group consists of about 4 team members that I happen to know have really been working hard this semester. It is true, they have gotten D’s and “F’s” on some projects in the past, but these students have been getting Bs on their assignments this semester and were really putting in a lot of work. I mentioned to her that I thought they had a pretty good chance since so many people were interested in working hard on her team. “You just don’t understand. We can’t do it. We don’t have anyone on our team from the smart students. No one can do our work to get a good grade.”


I tried to explain that she was sabotaging her own team with this kind of approach. Her team were invested in this project in a way that many other students were not. She had a team of 5 people who wanted a good score and had proven that they were willing to work for it. Three of them want to go to the west to study and realized they needed the scores to get into the western program. One of them wants to go to Portugal and work for a non-profit he is passionate about, but knows he has to get out of college before his dad will pay for the trip. One of them has already taken the class last semester (a repeat) and is determined not to take it again (too humiliating and he misses his girlfriend). Sure, they may not have gotten As in the past, but that did not mean they could not get an A this time. These students had gone from Ds to Cs to Bs — why couldn’t they be the A student now? They had an interest. They had time (two weeks of no classes). They were willing to put in the effort. There was NO reason why they could not be just as successful as the students who it came easy to. Even though the project might be more difficult for her team and it might take more time and attention, they still had a really good chance.

There are some subjects in school that always came pretty easy for me. We all have those favorite classes, and in general I’m pretty quick to understand some things. English, History. Grammar. International Relations. Psychology. Cultural Studies. Art. Humanities. Computer Skills and Technology. Graphic Design. Those classes, I got. Sure, I studied. But it wasn’t particularly HARD — just interesting.


Math and Science were NOT on that list. I have a not-so-secret hate relationship with science (no love) and a general dislike of certain math. Algebra and geometry are fine, but calculus? It doesn’t come easy to me the way it did to many of my classmates. I was an honors student and landed in a course with students who were math majors (or from Asian nations that I’ve since learned teach math differently, and I think more effectively) and flew through the material. It seemed like they just grasped concepts automatically that totally bewildered me. In fact, there was one question on my mid-term that I couldn’t even start to comprehend how to answer. Afterwards, I talked to the professor, he gave me some tips and said try again. I tried and tried. A week later, I went back to him — it still didn’t make sense to me. He explained some more. I tried again. This went on for almost a month. But at the end of that month, I clearly understood the concept he was sharing. I spent hours in my teachers office that semester and hours more on my own or with my friends (and the very kind guy who often sat and helped me with in-class assignments) working and working and working.


To be honest, economics originally did not come easy for me either. My teacher was really good at math and assumed everyone in the class understood why graphs go certain directions or take certain shapes. He kept throwing around vocabulary I was unfamiliar with and using all of these abstract explanations and drawing connections that seemed to me to be out of thin air. “Thomas buys more apples, so the supply curve goes here.” “This is of course diseconomies of scale.” Why?!? and What?!? -_- I spentweeks studying for those exams. I poured through his textbook and PPTs. I found other economics textbooks online and read them. I read article after article. I used all the online school websites. I went BACK to my calculus teacher and asked for help. I worked with my mom (she has an MBA in economics and business). I worked with friends. I memorized and studied over and over.

Some A’s I got easily, I am not gonna lie. For my A in Calculus and Economics, I worked my butt off. Those As weren’t because I was “smart” or “one of the A students” — I got them because I worked and read and practiced. I did hundreds of practice problems. I talked it through with people. I studied and watched help videos. Most importantly, I figured out my own style of learning and adapted my classes to fit my own needs. I created my own PPTs. Instead of using normal notebooks, I bought an art book and treated economics and math like an art class. I drew the graphs in different colors so I could see the patterns and flows of ideas. If the picture didn’t make sense, I drew it again and worked my way backwards. I created step-by-step patterns to explain the connections, instead of trying to jump from theory to conclusion. I used lots of symbols and arrows and images to help myself. I am a part visual – part kinesthetic learner. So I made it fit my style. Once I found the way that worked for me, I put in the time and started mastering my subjects.

You know the funny thing, of all the classes that came easy to me and that I was “smart” at . . . I am currently teaching Business, Economics, and Law. Now, the law — that’s one of the easier ones for me. But Business and Economics? It’s all back to those dreaded graphs and charts and theories that I struggled with in college. But today — it makes sense. I get it. The theories are logical, the equations come out in a reasonable way. Of course the demand curve slopes downward when the price goes up, no one wants to pay more money for extra products. If I bought the first product for $5, why would I pay you $6 for the second? Oh, you mean that I have a farm, and the more land I use for apples means I have less land for oranges. So apples and oranges form a substitution problem in supply? Sure! It makes sense to me.


I still use my drawing books. I still use colored pens and markers. I still draw picture after picture. I still check and double-check my graphs when I come to them to make sure I understand them correctly before moving on. You can see from my other posts that I like using pictures and emojicons and symbols still today. I often explain things in a very simple manner at first and follow a very step-by-step process to lay things out. I still draw all over the blackboard and my PPTs are full of graphics and examples. Almost every point I make, I add an example so students can see how that would play out in real life. In fact, I think my own struggles at the beginning have made me a BETTER teacher than I would have been if it were easy from the start. When students are confused or look at me with that “0_0” stare, I get it. I know where they are coming from because I too was totally lost and wandering in a theoretical graphing hell once upon a time.

Today, I love economics. It’s one of my favorite classes that I teach. I love the way it combines business with history, psychology, culture, and international relations (four of my great loves). I find it fascinating that we can study what is happening in Venezuela today and see predictions for the future in other nations. To see patterns and trends in the way people behave and act. To know that the Chinese dislike for super sweet treats has impacted demand for Oreos, leading the to creation of many “Chinese” flavors like Green Tea and Mango. The goal being to increase taste and thus quantity demanded instead of focusing on price (which is already fairly high for a treat in China). To be able to basically predict the future. It’s kind of, pretty much, awesome.

My point is, you don’t have to be smart or intuitive at something to succeed at it. You do not have to be the best in the class. It does not have to be easy. In fact, the harder you have to work for it, the more you usually appreciate what you learned in the end. The better you become at explaining it to others. The more you had to study it, I find the better you are at adapting situations and understanding how it works when the fact patterns change. Because you studied it for so long, you understand it thoroughly, like an old friend. Becoming good at something or doing a good job doesn’t always come because your IQ is high or because your “one of the A people.” It’s more about effort and a willing to put in extra time and attention.

If you are willing to put your heart into something — you should be able to succeed. And if it’s harder for you than others, well that is just that much more impressive!

Success 2

*Update: The team got a 91 on their project, and the teacher said they were one of the better ones he’s seen in a while. He was impressed with how they used the textbook material from other chapters to help support the one they were assigned to. See! Success!


Looking Good. . . . and the Power of #Reputation

8 Jan

Times Higher Education

During a quiz, two students start whispering in the back and lose points for cheating. Later, “Teacher, please don’t take away our points! We weren’t cheating. We promise. You should trust us!” 

To be honest, maybe 75% of the time, the students AREN’T cheating – just bored.  But it LOOKS bad. 

The problem is a matter of REPUTATION. People trust their eyes. If it looks like you do questionable things (behaviors that look bad), people will not trust you when you say you are innocent. They will trust what their eyes tell them.  

Example: You do not always follow the rules and make a note of the money you spend at the company. Suddenly, some goes missing while you were in charge. No matter what excuses you make, even if you are very honest, people will often see missing money and a careless worker and be suspicious that you stole it. 

Example 2: You take things from the company without permission. Small things — stuff no one really cares about. Pens. Paper. Staples. Toilet Paper. Coffee Pot. $1 or $2 from the register to buy a soda here or there. Maybe you take a meal without paying. Sneak an extra bread roll off the shelf. Then one day, $300 goes missing from the register you have access to. Suspicion turns on you.  What exactly is your defense?  “Guys! You know me! I wouldn’t do something like that!” . . . . Yeah, we do know you. You take small stuff, why would we believe that there is some magic limit on the big stuff?  Even if you are completely 100% innocent, it’s harder to prove your case. 

Real World Example: A teacher frequently talks to students alone in his office with the door closed. He hangs out with several of the female students. He goes out to dinner with one of them (a lot). He gives her presents (Christmas, her birthday). He helps her study for classes. He invites her to the faculty Christmas party as a student friend.  Students start asking questions . . . . Then the teachers start asking questions.  Even though the guy was never ACTUALLY caught having a relationship with this student, it sure looked bad. So when students complained to the administration, he was fired. It simply was too questionable. Whether or not something bad REALLY happened, no one knows. But he put himself in a situation where it was questionable. People weren’t sure. MAYBE he could have done it. 

Don’t be that person. 

One of the lessons I hope my students remember in the future is that it is not enough to “be a good person” — you must also LOOK like a good person. It’s simple risk management.  Never put yourself in a situation where there can be any QUESTION as to your morality. Be the person where, when someone says “They say he stole money from the company!” the people around you respond “Him? Never! He’s not that kind of person. I’ve seen him at work and he is a good man.” 

Using Union Pay at #Korea ATM

1 Jan

​How to use a Chinese Union Pay card at a Korean atm. 😜 I had to learn through trial & error. Hope this saves some Chinese residents visiting Korea!
1. Click button that says English (with #Chinese characters below) – you cannot actually use a union pay card and English – so it has to be done in Chinese.

2. Choice 2 – ‘Foreign Card 中國語’ – That’s Chinese

3. Put in your card.

4. Choose ‘CUP’ – Chinese Union Pay

5. Choose the top left button (first button) – 信用卡(credit card)

6. Choose the top left button (first choice) – 取现 (take cash)

7. Now it will ask you how much Won you want.

8. Enter you Bank Card password.

9. Take receipt, card, then cash!

Well done!

Vote Sugar for Participation!

26 Dec
Me: Your assignment is NOT a presentation — you are supposed to lead a class discussion.
Student:  I don’t understand.
Me: You ask the class questions and get them to participate and talk. 😐
Student:  Our grade means the class has to TALK to us? But teacher, this is not the China way. Maybe we do not like to talk in class. Maybe we will all have a very bad grade.
Me (in my mind): Welcome to the life of the laowai laoshi (foreign teacher) and the struggle for participation!
Me (in reality): You can do this. Maybe call on people one by one. Or ask your friends to help you. Or offer the first person to talk candy.
Student: . . . . . . . 😑
WeChat 5 minutes later . . . . “You may use every way to force your classmates to work for you. Teacher Olivia recommends sugar.”
Me: Bwahahahahahahahaha . . . Behold, the power of sugar! 😝😆🤣🍡🍨🍬🍭🍫🍰🎂🍪🍩
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