Thursday, December 11, 2008

Any snow-people out there? With or without eyes of coal?

My last paper was turned in as of 9:38am today. So, besides on teensy exam on Monday, my school days are over for a few years. (Wow. It feels really weird to say that, especially without a degree in my hand. Oh well.)

But in light of my recent emergence from the dark hole that is finals week, I have been thinking more and more about what it will be like when we arrive in South Korea.

We don't have our tickets yet; so we don't know the exact date we will arrive or into which airport we will fly. But we do know this... it will be cold... and snow-covered.

Now, people, I am a Georgia girl through-and-through. Born and raised in the great Peach State. And as such, I have never lived in what has been described to me as "real snow." Now, don't get me wrong, I've seen snow, sure. We have one or two days of snow every one or two years around these parts. But, honestly, by the time we get out to play in it, it has mostly melted away... or melted and refrozen into REALLY HARD ROCK-LIKE snow. (Trust me, you don't want to get in a snowball fight with THAT stuff). Now sure, I've gone to the mountains and even taken the odd trip to Western Canada. So, yes, I have SEEN snow.

But lived in it? Notsomuch.

Here's what really got me thinking about it: At Thanksgiving this year, I was talking to hubby's aunt who lived (for a couple years) in South Korea with her daughters. So when she heard we would be arriving in January, her first question was: "Have you bought Chloe a snow suit?"

A WHAT? You mean those things people wear when they ski? I don't plan on taking my 2-year-old skiing, thankyouverymuch.

And that's when it hit me (as if the whole moving-to-the-other-side-of-the-world thing didn't freak me out enough): I'm going to be LIVING in SNOW.

I mean, in my mind, life will be like this:

Wanna go for a walk? Put on your snowshoes, and snowsuit, and parka, and gloves, and 2 scarves, and hat, and earmuffs.

Perhaps that's a bit extreme. But, honestly y'all, I don't even know where to BUY a coat that's warm enough for real snow.

Snow that looks like this...

Or this...

Or THIS!!!...

That's right, folks. THAT is South Korea. All three pictures. And the first two? MY FUTURE HOME TOWN!!!

I haven't freaked out about the language barrier. I haven't freaked out about the fact that I have NO idea how to teach English. I haven't freaked out (too much) about the "weird" food. But this? This "snow" thing? I AM FREAKING OUT JUST A LEEEEEEEETLE BIT.

So, I'm asking you faithful few readers (particularly any of you who currently live (or have ever lived) in snowy places... how do you cope in the snow? What kind of coats should I buy? Are snow suits necessary? How 'bout snow boots? Mittens or gloves? Wool socks? Those funky snow shoes that look like tennis rackets????!!???

I welcome any and all advice (as well as a few well-deserved jabs at my panic).

Thanks friends! Thank you SO much!


The Management :) said...

Korea = Asia.

Philippines = Southeast Asia.

Darn. I don't have any pointers for you. We thought it was chilly when there was a evening breeze and temps were in the 70s.

You're going to do great. You can just wear your children and then all three of you will be warm. And Brandon can wear his Big Bird Yellow snow outfit from the ski trips.

Love You

superstarr said...

Well friend, I think you know that I HATE snow-- that's why I stay in GA and not with family in MO. The main reason I hated it though was because I was a teenager and didn't want to dress appropriately. I do think that Chloe needs a snowsuit, you and Brandon both need long underwear. Really thick socks are a must and good hats and gloves. Honestly, when you live around snow going out of the house does take double the time because once you get ready you still have to put on all the 'staying warm' cloths. Try not to panick though-- it's not winter forever in Korea-- and winter is a slow season for everyone-- you will be able to catch up to the conditions.

Debbie C. said...

Oh, I am so J-E-A-L-O-U-S! I lived in snow for all of my growing up years, up in D.C. Loved it and miss it so much. Snow boots and gloves and hats and a heavy coat are a must. Try Lands End, they have the best and you could probably find some good sales right now. Or go to the Goodwill, sometimes you can find some good stuff there. Let Chloe experience it, it's great and it's beautiful and you don't want to miss it. Plus, the quiet after a snow is the most incredible thing you will ever "hear".

Angela said...

I hate to break it to you, Brandy, but I have to be honest with you. As a former resident of Germany and Detroit, I have some insight on this matter. Snow is only fun when you're little. So, while it might be fun for little Chloe and future baby Thixton, it won't be fun for the adults. You guys will be the ones dressing the little ones in snow gear, shoveling snow, etc. However, as a kid I absolutely loved snow sledding, snowball fights, etc. Kids are almost oblivious and immune to extreme temperatures. But for adults, it's just a lot of extra work. It looks pretty and the idea of it is nice, but almost everyone I know that has lived in the snow as an adult ends up hating it.

Why do you think there are so many old folks in Florida? :)

Christan said...

Old Navy, BabyGap, and Childrens Place have all outwear 40% off. I just bought Cadence some snow pants for $20.00. Everything is way discounted!!!!!!

Kathryn said...

If it makes you feel any better, Ansley hasn't said a word about the snow, so hopefully it's not too much of a deterrent. (She'll be here in a couple of days and would love to see you all. Maybe we can have dinner at our house again? Let me know what nights might work for y'all if it's a possibility for you guys in this busy holiday season.) And in terms of latitude I think South Korea falls on the same line as North Carolina (not sure about altitude, though.) So, I'm hoping that it won't be too much colder than NC. We found some really cheap snow boots (for kids) at Rack Room next to Chuck e. Cheeses.

I've always wanted to live where it really snowed -- just for a year or so...

Debbie said...

I am from Rhode Island, so I agree with everyone about the need for snow things. Boots, gloves, scarves, long underwear (if you will be out in it for a long time) heavy coats, and a HAT is really important since you loose a lot of heat through your head. Ear muffs are nice too. In high school I actually wore the kind of sleepers with the feet in them because the house was cold at night. (Can you believe they actually make those kind of sleepers for adults?!) Snow is beautiful, and an incredible creation of God. I think positive thinking will definitely help, such as focusing on the beauty of God's creation and downplaying the hassle of dressing kids in the winter time. What a blessing to experience new and different things!

Jenna said...

Hey Ali! I am here from AB's blog and just wanted to say hi! I have no words of wisdom for you on the snow (fellow born and raised GA peach right here), but I am so happy to have found your blog.

I look forward to keeping up with you and your fam on your awesome adventure!!

Brandy Thixton said...

Hi Jenna! Glad to have you! Only, my name is Brandy. I think Ali's blog was a different link. Still, glad you're here, and hope to have you back! =)

Kelly said...

Hi Brandy! It's Kelly Phelan. I've just recently been reading your blog and am so excited that you are going to South Korea! I've never been to Asia but definitely have lived in the snow.

Yes, what almost everyone else has said about winter gear I agree with. You will need hats, gloves, snow suits etc. Be prepared for clothes to get wet. When snow collects on gear and then melts when you come inside. We always had spots to hang dry everything or you could use a clothes dryer. BUT it is the most fun (funnest?) thing in the world to play in the snow. Don't get discouraged about any of the work that comes along with it. And the quiet that Debbie C. commented about? I definitely think is one of the most beautiful things you will "hear."

L.L. Bean is also a GREAT place to get stuff. Their customer service is The Best. You can always return/exchange things and they almost never get things wrong. Also great deals on their website.

I'll keep you guys in my prayers! Good to hear of your adventures!

The Quote That Started It All...

I myself have twelve hats, each one representing a different personality. Why be just yourself? - Margaret Atwood