If you guys remember, back in June my handsome Soldier hubby left on a jet plane to Korea for a year. This “vacation” is compliments of the US Army. Now, I could have went with him and this is something we considered. However, it would have added another year to his assignment in Korea. Also, he had started talking about retiring and we wanted to make sure we were debt free as much as possible. We wanted to afford ourselves the opportunity to build or buy a house in a place we could truly call home. So, we made the hard decision for the kids and I to remain in the states. Also, we would have been losing money believe it or not. This time of “military separation” has been incredibly difficult for several reasons. However, God is ever faithful! After a few months of my husband being gone, we talked and decided that I would visit him in Korea!
I am not normally one to leave my boys for for any period of time. If they aren’t with me, they’re with Daddy. It was hard getting past the thought of leaving them. Although my mom said she would take care of the boys, I struggled with so many emotions that last night as I tucked them into bed. Bookworm (my oldest) cried and said he didn’t want me to go. Turtle Boy (my middle) asked why both Daddy and I had to be gone at the same time. Nemo (my youngest) asked if he could go with me. They all wanted to see Daddy and, yet, they all wanted me to stay. We had considered bringing them along, but with the cost of passports and travel expenses, we just couldn’t budget it. They love their Daddy so much, but Clay and I never had a honeymoon to speak of. It was bitter sweet to say the least.
I have so much to share about my trip and I hope you will join me in this series! I will be sharing the outfits I wore but I will also be sharing the many wonderful sights we took in as well. God was there through it all from the details in planning, providing for the boys while I was gone, the travel arrangements….everything. I actually had a pretty easy trip and was seated with some very nice folks on my flights.
The first item on my agenda while preparing to leave was planning my outfits. I tried to pack outfits that I could mix and match to give me more variety.
I also had to plan for cold weather outfits. South Korea in November can be very tricky. Some days are warm while others are bitterly cold.
I was also limited to two suitcases weighing no more than 50 pounds a piece. This included my shoes, clothes, hygiene products and items the boys wanted me to give Daddy. If you’ve never packed for an extended, international trip, you’d be surprised at how quickly 50 pounds adds up. It was tricky, but I made it work. So what did I wear while I was there?
The first day I was there, I didn’t have time to adjust to the 14 hour time difference or get past my jet lag. We had an appointment at JAG to update our will. We agreed this would be the best time to update it because both of us would be present to sign, but it’s also a free service offered to the military by the military. We also had some errands we needed to run. I woke up about 5am because of the time difference and was WIDE awake despite the 17 hour plane ride over there! Needless to say, it was nap time for me before we left for our appointment with JAG…HAHA.
Clay has four methods of transportation in Korea (taxi, bus, train, walk). Notice that car wasn’t one of them. Although he could buy a hoopty, we decided against it because of the budget. Anyway, I decided to go for something very comfortable that first day because we would be walking, riding a bus, train or taxi everywhere. I wanted to be sure that on the first day, jet-lagged and all, comfort was taken care of.
This was us the first day walking from Clay’s apartment to post. The most direct route was through a tunnel built under the main road. The artwork in the murals in this tunnel are amazing. (Pay close attention to the above photo. Notice anything particular? Hint: Clay is a stickler for proper spelling…lol).
More pictures of the tunnel. Isn’t it gorgeous?
While on post we went to the Dragon Hill Lodge and ate lunch. Clay took me on a tour of the lodge as we walked to JAG and showed me this beauty! I just loved it! So pretty! It was very peaceful and would have been an excellent place to read my Bible, pray and reflect on God’s Word!
The last three pictures above were also taken on post at the Fire Station. Pictured is a memorial statue for the Assistant Fire Chief Yi Chae-Kon who served at this fire station and lost his life in the line of duty in 1977.
As we finished our appointment, Clay and I walked to the Post Exchange (similar to a Walmart minus the groceries). We happened upon this display. This only the first row of flags. Behind this row are three additional row of flags displayed. It was pretty huge. Displayed were all the flags of the nations who participated in the Korean War.
My Outfit pieces:
Headband: Lilla Rose
Sweatshirt: Purchased at a clearance sale at Macy’s
Skirt: Another sale I found at Macy’s! I got it for over 50% off!
Boots: They are new this season and I love them! I wore them several times in Korea while walking ALL over the place, yet they remained totally comfortable! Bought at Macy’s on sale.
Well, I hope you enjoyed these pictures from my first day in South Korea! Come back and join me for the rest of the series. If your not subscribed, click at the top of the blog, enter your email, then go to your email and confirm subscription! This will keep you from missing any of my posts. 🙂
Laura Prater is a long time Army wife, her husband just retired after 20 years Active Duty this past July. She, her husband, and family are still very active in the military community. Laura is an area volunteer for National Military Family Association and also contributes occasionally to MilitaryOneClick as part of their Blogger Brigade. In addition to all this Laura is a homeschool mom to their three boys. You can find Laura sharing her favorite recipes and chatting about faith, family, all things homemaking, and homeschool over at her other website www.awefilledhomemaker.com