The great thing about blogging is that as something exciting happens, you can write about it. I actually didn’t have that luxury because as excited as I was about everything, only my immediate family and two best friends knew about the move to Korea. Soooo you’re getting the edited version- sorry 🙁

I’ve always wanted to travel. One day when browsing jobs, (ugggh this economy is poopy) I came across an ad to teach English in Japan. Hmmmm… great idea- but why Asia? When the only answer I came up with was “why not?” I decided to seriously consider this opportunity. Enter my good friend and travel buddy, who shall remain nameless until I confirm that she is ok with me using here name on here (lol.) She, about a few months away from her college graduation, had also wanted to travel abroad for teaching opportunities. She has an aunt who taught in South Korea for a year, and spoke nothing but great things of a program called EPIK .
Good friend and I weighed our pros and cons (I think the only con we had was leaving friends and family) and decided to apply…
Fast forward a few tedious months later… we’re 23 days away from moving to Ulsan, South Korea! But again, I’m getting ahead of myself.
I would have LOVED to share all of the amazing moments with you as they happened, BUT because I am oh so good at keeping secrets, I had to stay hum about everything until 1.) It was official, and 2.) I responsibly notified my job. (Yes, the 2 week notice is officially in!) Here is a small timeline. Keep in mind I have a horrible memory- similar to Dory of Finding Nemo- so dates may be a bit off:
*Early May 2009- Jen applies to EPIK program.
*May 7, 2009- Jen gets an email that she passed the application process, and is invited to schedule an interview. Jen calls that night to set one up!
*A week later, Jen gets cold feet and declines the opportunity before her initial interview.
*(A few?) weeks later, after much prayer, Jen calls to reschedule an interview. (Crossing her fingers.)
*May 30, 2009 – Jen has her phone interview. (Thank God for second chances!)
*June 1, 2009- Jen receives an email that goes a little something like this :
Hi Jennifer,

[Get your documents in as quickly as possible so that you have the most options open to you. I’ve attached a map so that you can choose some other options in case Ulsan closes before you can get your documents.]

Congratulations! You have passed our interview and we would like to recommend you to your preferred POE as soon as you have submitted all the necessary documents. First-come, first-serve, of course!


*All of June- Jen runs around like a chicken with her head cut off, getting documents notarized, apostilled, sent to the Department of State, obtaining money orders and Criminal background checks, and sending things via USPS and FedEx. (Sure, this sounds like a piece of cake, but lets keep in mind that there is a waiting period for each document. You must first send it off to the Dept. of State, wait for it to be processed and mailed back, and then mail it off to Korea. sigh.)
*Needless to say 3-4 weeks later, Jen mails off her documents to Seoul, Korea, and waits to hear her fate. And waits. And waits.
*July 10, Jen receives her contract- she is going to Ulsan!
*Jen now has everything she needs to apply for her E2 Visa. She sends off required documents and VISA application, and waits, yet again.
*July 16(ish) 2009- Jen gets her VISA !!
*July 16, 2009- Jen and good friend book their tickets from San Francisco to Korea! (Yes, we booked backwards)
*July 22, 2009- Jen and good friend book their tickets from Ft. Lauderdale to San Francisco.
AND THAT BRINGS US TO THE PRESENT. Whew, that was exhausting, I need a nap! 😛 hahaha. Well boys and girls, from here on out, everything will be in PRESENT tense. Thank God, Jen hates speaking in 3rd person! Just wanted to give you a “play by play” of the happenings. We can’t know where we’re going, if we don’t know where we’ve been right? Have a blessed night!
P.S., These are two scripts from fortune cookies that I received. The first one, which reads “Wish you a good journey” I got the day after I called to setup my “second chance” interview. Below it, reads “Happy life is just in front of you”, which I got a week after the first. I still have them both.

And of course a hair update: I rocked my first twist out today, yaaay!! Simple, simple, simple: Wash and condition hair. Twist wet hair in sections. Allow hair to air dry (or in my case sleep on it). Undo twists and apply a LIGHT moisturizer. (I used raw shea butter.) Style it, rock it, love it!
Edit: I found out my hair is not friends with Shea butter right now, it’s a little too heavy and leaves me oily. Sad, bc it did WONDERS in making my hair oh so soft! I’m in the works of trying a twistout with a better moisturizer.

*~Wisdom. Courage. Peace!~*
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Yes, Solange Did the Big Chop.

**Random thought of the day** Since chopping my hair, I’ve gotten ALOT of feedback. I guess when you’re a black woman with a “natural” cut, people feel entitled to express their thoughts- good or bad- about what you have “done”. (Similar to how learning that a woman is pregnant “entitles” people to touch her stomach?) Anyways, I’ve come to terms with that fact that not everyone will love my curly fro as much as I do- and thats fine. But why oh why did some people sleep through the “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all” lesson in class? Let’s be real here, IT’S JUST HAIR!

With that being said… why is everyone trippin about Solange (singer- yes, Beyonce’s little sister) cutting her hair?  Yes, Solange did the big chop. Get over it. I think she looks great! If the info posted on that *oh so reliable* media source is true, Bow Wow and Soulja Boy have definitely lost a few points in my book!
And more importantly, if someone is embracing something NATURALLY given to them, why stoop so low as to degrade them? Seems a bit disrespectful to the Maker, don’t you think?
-Thats just my piece, but hey- when you know better, you do better! ;o).

On the upside, MY hair has grown an inch since the BC 3 weeks ago, and my curlies are doing better than ever! whoop, whoop! Good night lovelies.
*~ wisdom. courage. peace!
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Welcome… do u know what you’re getting yourself into?

FIRST POST!! So I assume this is where I introduce myself and my reason for blogging? Not exactly. Being that you are on this journey with me as a friend, it means you a.) already know enough about Jen to know what to expect or b.) will soon find out! (lol) But here are the basics:

*My name is Jen. I can be crazy goofy. Want proof? Please see pic below and tell me what I was doing?

*I graduated from USF in 2007. (I see you trying to calculate my age- stop it!)
*I’m taking a HUGE leap of faith by moving across the world (in less than a month) to teach English in Korea. (As exciting as it sounds, I’m scared beyond belief.)
*I’m officially a curly girl.
(Natural hair est’d July 3, 2009)
*I’m a thinker, a writer, and a lover of all words of wisdom. I have a quote for every occasion.

*I love travel, fashion, health and beauty, and learning more about “natural” remedies and healthcare. Tips and product reviews may make their cameo from time to time.
*Please expect the unexpected. I’m random.
~Stay tuned, some great things are sure to follow!~

P.S. – I love my amazing family and beautiful friends- I’m VERY blessed to have them!!
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