pocket convertor

My cousin Tiffany is about to spend a year in Argentina as an exchange student.  On her blog, she metioned she was concerned about dealing with conversion of dollars to pesos and knowing what is and is not expensive.

She is right that eventually this will become easy for her to tell.  But at first it is helpful to have a tool--right there in your wallet.  I used a pocket convertor from travlang my first year in Taiwan.  (Although their website is ladened with ads, I find this pocket convertor worth the clutter.)

Here is how to get to their pocket-sized convertor: after you choose the currencies you want to convert and it makes the conversion, on the second page underneath where it
shows you the conversion rates (and the pink java calculator) there is a link
to a pocket convertor. 

Taiwanese Here is how to make it wallet-ready: Print out the "pocket convertor;" fold in half length wise and "laminate" it with clear, wide (packing) tape.  Now, it will last a LONG time.

Just for fun . . . 1 USD (US Dollar) is worth about 3 Argentinan Pesos or about 32.7 New Taiwan Dollars.

explore the world's population

Did you know that over 1/2 of the world’s population is in Asia!?!  Over HALF!

Did you know that 12 of the 15 largest cities in the world are in Asia!?! (The other 3 are LA, NY, and Mexico City.)


I discovered online a nifty interative world population "map."  I suggest you play with the sliders on the right of the "map" to see the stats in different ways.   It's really fun and informative too.

While playing with this unique tool, I was reminded that most of the unreached people groups on earth appear to be the most densely populated.

In fact, The 10/40 window, the area of the world that extends from 10 degrees to 40 degrees north of the equator, and stretches from North Africa across to China, contains the largest population of non-Christians in the world.   

1040window_1And, do you know what?  Two-thirds of the world's population live in this window!!  Two-thirds!!!  That is about 3.2 BILLION people!

That is an overwhelming number!  I wonder just how many of those 3.2 billion  people have never even heard the name of Jesus, much less the Gospel.

This number seems so overwhelming and daunting to me.  That is why I love Revelation 7:9 so much.  It promises individuals from all tribes, peoples, and langauges will one day worship the King of Kings: "I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb."  Amen!

So, what can we do?  We can pray.  We can adopt a people group (more info here).  We can give.  We can go.

Because we know that "this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations" (Matthew 24:14).

fishing for shrimp

Sam caught another shrimp!!!

One of the cool things that Sam got to do in Taiwan was go shrimp fishing!!

Ellen's Dad took us to a place where you fish for shrimp and then immediately cook and eat the shrimp that you catch.  I would have to say that it was the freshest shrimp I have ever eaten. 

Even if it was from a stocked tank, it was a neat, once-in-a-lifetime experience for Sam.  Even Gilby enjoyed the experience!!

Thanks, Lin BaBa!!


at a night market


During Sam's last week in Taiwan, we went to have dinner and play games with some of the missionaries I work with Kaohsiung.  In the next few weeks, there will be three Taiwanese mission teams (Praise the Lord!!) coming to work with the Minnichs and their Church in order to tell the people in their area about Christ.  So, after dinner and play, Sam and I got to join the Minnich family and their pastor's family pass out flyers at the night market inviting people to the upcoming events.

Please pray for the Minnich family, the Pastor's family, and the Taiwanese teams that are preparing to come to DaShe.  Please also pray for many Taiwanese to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ this summer and for God to do a work of grace in their lives. 

Please pray for church planting movement that is beyond our comprehension to start among the Taiwanese! 

lightly nerdy

Last week, I saw this over at Rocks in My Dryer and thought I would take the quiz too.

Apparently, of the people who took this online quiz, I am nerdier than 59% of them.  Hmmm . . .

I am nerdier than 59% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out!

P.S. Sam and I are home safe and sound!!  I get to enjoy being in the USA for the next few weeks of summer vacation. :)

home in kaohsiung again . . . but not for long

Sam is . . . Well, He is Tired

Sam and I enjoyed our trip north.  Sam learned a lot, saw lots of things and ate lots of things he has never seen or eaten before (and might never again).  Oh! we also took over 700 pictures!  (Which, just fyi, makes for a three month grad total of over 3,100 photos!  Is that a lot?)

The rain from the typhoons only stopped us one day.  However, we are TIRED, and he is LONGING for home.  But, that is ok, because it is the first time he has been homesick all summer--3 months is quite a long time for a 12 year old to venture out to a new country away from mom and dad.  And, it is ok, because tomorrow (Friday) we go back to America! 

Thanks for stopping by following an unknown path!  I will post more pics from our trip in the coming days and weeks.  I look forward to sharing with you some of what Sam saw and did and learned during his last weeks in Taiwan.

Oh yeah, the next time I post will be from the other side of the world!  See ya then!!



the view from meinong



It was the place where I had my first apartment, made my first home.  I love mountains and always wanted to live where I could see mountains.  My first home provided a view of the beautiful Meingong mountains from ALL the windows in the house!!  Isn't God good?

I enjoyed being able to show Sam one of my favorite places on the island. 

Meinong--美農--means "beautiful farm."  There are lots of different kinds of fields in Meinong.  Most common are tobacco and rice.  There are also some pineapple, papaya, betel nut, red pepper fields, among others in the area. 

The people in Meinong are predominately Hakka.  Please pray for the Hakka people and the work that God is doing among them in Meinong.  Please pray for the missionaries that live in Meinong as they share Christ with the Hakka people in hopes of a Hakka Harvest!

To see more pics from our Meinong Trip click here.

To see the pictures above alone and full size click the titles: 1. the tops of Hakka homes, 2. awe . . . Meinong!, 3. Coconut Trees, 4. Red Pepper Field, 5. Women in Field, 6. Water Lillies, 7. Rice Field, 8. Man in Field, 9. a temple, 10. Cranes, 11. Mountains thru the Trees, 12. Men at work sign

p.s. this is a automatic post . . . I will be on
vacation when this posts. :)  Oh . . . and just in case you were
wondering--this is the only prepost I wrote.  I really won't be back to
blog until the 18th.  :)  See you then!!

happy birthday ellen!!

Today is one of my best friend's (and her twin sister's) birthdays!! 

祝你生日快樂, Ellen!!  I am so glad that I get to be with you this time on your birthday.

I love you!!

No one could ask for a more patient friend, a more giving friend, nor a more encouraging friend.  I can't believe we have now been friends for nearly 10 years.  Time flies!!  Thank you so much, Ellen, for all you do for me and give to me. 



trip to meinong

Riding in the Rain

Well . . . our trip to Meinong was WATERLOGGED!! :)

Our bike ride was a blast!  Sam loved every minute of riding in the rain.  I had fun . . . but in the process my cell phone died and my new camera now has a humidity problem. :(

I told Sam that if it rains in Taipei we are going to continue to have our "this is fun" attitude no matter how wet we get.  We can't let the rain ruin our fun.  We might not be able to choose the weather, but we can choose our attitudes!

Anyway, we stopped at my apartment for one night to wash clothes, get a good sleep and repack.  In a few hours, we are headed north.  Since I had a minute, I uploaded our Meinong pictures!  Enjoy!!


p.s. Thank you Sandy and Michael for letting us stay with you in Meinong!!

cool stuff that is coming up

This week's Carnival of Beauty is hosted by Ellen, and the topic is "The Beauty of the Psalms."  There is still time to submit your post if you wanna participate this week.  If you haven't participated before, please make sure you check out the guidelines over at Sallie's blog.


The Christian Women Online ladies have started a new meme that looks like fun.  They will give a quote on Fridays which is to inspire blog posts by Christian women around the world.  On Tuesdays, you can visit CWO to find a list of links to the blogs that participated.  Sounds like fun . . . I will try it out after my vacation is over! 

But if you wanna go for it--this week the deadline is quickly approaching--so get inspired QUICK!! :)


12women_1 After talking about the value of reading for a week, the girl talk ladies are starting a girl talk book club.  The first book is one I just bought, Twelve Extraordinary Women by John MacArthur. 

Here is how they say the club will work:

* We’ll pick a book and post it on our sidebar.
* Each week, we will read one chapter and we hope you’ll read with us.
* Along with the chapter assignment, we’ll ask a question, and invite you to submit your answer.
* Among the answers, we will choose one to post.
* That person will receive an author-signed copy of the Girltalk Book Club selection.
* We will also comment on the chapters as we go along.

They are giving everyone a week to buy the book and then will started.  If it sounds like something that suits you, go check it out!

taiwan tour

Dsc05638bSam and I are leaving for our Tour of Taiwan today. :)

I am so excited!! 

School is now over.  Grades are turned in.  We've had our final departmental meeting.  Our Summer English Camp is even over too!  My office at school is all packed and in boxes.  It is time to party and to explore, to go and to see!!

We are going to Meinong this weekend (where I lived for a year).   Then we will go all the way north to my friend's home.  From there, we will travel up to see things in Tapei (like the world's tallest building and art that is thousands of years old).  Then on our way back down south, we will visit a friend in Taichung and then spend a day in Tainan.

Have I mentioned that I am excited?  I might even be more excited than Sam!  (Although, he begs to differ.)


There is only one damper to all this excitement that we have to battle. :(  A typhoon is coming!!  Just now, as I was typing, it started to rain.  So I popped over to the weather site for Taiwan and found this:


You see all those little rain clouds right?  One for every single day of our trip!!!  :(  This little chart and the rain outside my window made me go from this:


To this:


But . . . I guess we will just have to try and have fun in the rain because we are going to go on our Taiwan Tour no matter what!!  But, we will make safe choices, Mom and NeeNee--I promise.

And, regardless of the weather, we will take lots of pictures to share with you when we come back around the 18th.  So, see you again then!

Which Asian Country to Visit?

You Should Travel to India

You're a passionate, gusty traveler - and India's gritty urban centers won't scare you away.

Maybe you'll take in the Taj Mahal, eat the best curry of your life, or attend a huge street festival.

You Should Travel to China

China can satisfy your craving for many travel opportunities in one trip.

You can hang out in modern Shanghai, walk along the great wall, or visit sacred mountains.

For SO MANY of the questions I wanted to choose 2, 3, or 4 answers!!  I know it is just a silly blogthing, so I did it more than once just to see what other choice the author of the quiz was offering.  :)

I really would like to visit South Korea and Thailand--really, really want to.  I've been to China, Hong Kong, and Japan.  I wouldn't mind going back to a different part of China or Japan for that matter, and would love to explore Hong Kong with my best friend (have only been for mission trips or mission training before).  Cambodia, Vietnam, the Phillipines, Indonesia, and Singapore are places I could see myself visiting.  As is India.  But I don't see myself living in those Counties--unless God does some major reconstruction on my heart again. :)

yeah, but why TAIWAN? (part 5)

If you wanna know why I live in Taiwan, this post 
tells you the answer.  The post below is the fifth installment of a multi-post series.  It is a chronological story of why I live in Taiwan (as opposed to any other "foreign country"), so if you would like to start at the beginning of the story, you can start with part one. 

Let's see, to recap, so far I have talked about my first trip to Taiwan in 1997, about how God helped me to fall in love with the Taiwanese culture, how I kept returning to Asia, and about my year as an exchange student in 1999 and 2000.

When I got back to America after spending a year overseas, I had MAJOR reverse culture shock.  It was even worse than culture shock because no one had told me to expect it, so I was totally unpreapared for it.  I didn't know what I was experiencing, but I knew something was not right.

Thankfully, my Heavenly Father knew.  He provided two people to help me get through it.  One was a former missionary who I met for coffee one afternoon.  I don't even know now how we were introduced, but I will never forget that afternoon of talking and crying through my emotions with someone who understood and could give good godly advice and wisdom.  One of the things she told me that stuck with me for a long time was "it is good sign that you are having trouble adjusting back here because that means, first, that you felt at home in your host culture, and, second, that you will want to and can go back." 

Pict0001The other person who helped me was my best friend--a Taiwanese young woman studying in America.  I met her in America, then went to Taiwan to study abroad, and then came back to America and lived with her as my roommate.  One day--after she built up her bravery--she confronted me.  Basically she said, "Amanda, I don't understand you these days.  You are so fake.  Around Americans you act so American, but around us Taiwanese you act so Taiwanese.  What is going on?  Why do you act this way?"

Although I could have taken what she said has a huge insult, we had a long girlfriend talk, and it helped me to better understood what was happening to me.  I explained to my best friend that I was not being fake; that I had adopted Taiwanese mannerisms and ways of talking because I identified with my friends and roommates in Taiwan.  That I was struggling to define who I was--which I know describe as a milkshake or fruit slushie.

After living overseas for a year and the struggle with living in America upon first returning, I knew I was to live overseas for a long time.  So, I refused to allow myself to readjust to American culture 100%.  I fought hard to keep from going into further debt by buying a car and didn't take out any credit cards.  God was SO faithful in meeting my needs.  Through my grandparents and their neighbor, he provided the perfect car for me.  He gave me jobs that were perfect in that they met my needs, yet still gave me time and freedom to serve and minister to international women, while at the same time allowing me to strengthen my professional skills.  He is a great God who cares about the details of our lives.

Another thing I struggled with that first semester I returned to America was what to do when I graduated in December.  I sought the counsel of every missionary I could talk to.  I asked questions to every missionary sending agency I could find.  I thought, and I thought.  I asked, and I asked.

Seminary?  Grad school?  Work in USA to pay off loans?  Go overseas two years then come back to study?  What to do?  What to do?  The only way I can describe the
feeling is like the agitation of a washing machine--churn, churn, churn.  I was totally "an unsettled wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind."  I so desired to do God's will perfectly and didn't want to mess up. 

After much tossing, thinking, and asking humans.  I just had to trust that James 5:15 was true: "If you need wisdom – if you want to know what God wants you to do – ask
him, and he will gladly tell you. He will not resent your asking."  I just kept praying about what to do.  After much prayer, I decided to get my MA in Foreign Language Education close to home (so I could spend time with family before leaving to live oversesas).

This was one of those times in my life where how do you decide what is best when all choices seem to be good ones.  It was not easy.  And I can tell you that it was nothing like the other times in my life when God clearly said "This is it.  Do this."  I even begged my earthly parents to have an opinion on the matter so I could be obedient to them as I am still under their authority as long as I am single.  I wanted a burning bush, but God gave me no such thing this time. 

Pict0006God doesn't always work in the same ways in our lives.  He speaks to us differently at different times.  The only way I can describe my final decision is that He gave me a peace that went beyond my understanding.  He took away the washing-maching-like churning that was tearing my heart up and replaced it with total peace. 

The fact still remains . . . and the theme of the song I sing about Him working in my life . . . is that He never fails.  His ways are higher than mine, better than mine, and can't be reasoned or explained away.  He is all-good all the time and all-powerful all the time.   What an amazing God!

The sixth part of the story will tell how I came to live exactly where I do in Taiwan.  How God put me exactly where I needed to be.


I don't often do meme's but I saw this on a few blogs recently and thought I would give it a whirl.

5 Things in my Refrigerator

  1. taco seasoning

  2. kool-aid packages (its so humid here I store them in the fridge)

  3. my treasured supply of Obrit Bubblemint gum from the States (ditto the humid thing)

  4. a bottle of soy sauce

  5. my almost empty Mrs. Butterworth's Lite that I brought from America since syrup is SO expensive here

5 Things in my Closet:

  1. all of my clothes (I have no dresser)

  2. my new pink weekend travel bag

  3. plane tickets back to the States

  4. mine and Sam's passports

  5. three dirty clothes hampers (one for lights, one for darks, and one for demin)

5 Things in my Purse:

  1. my fave pink pen (uni jetstream)

  2. my pink sunglasses

  3. my camera

  4. my other fave pen (Pentel Rolly C4)

  5. a pack of Black Black

5 Things in my Car:
(I don't have a car, so here are 5 things in/on my moped)

  1. my raincoat

  2. my helmet

  3. Sam's helmet

  4. probably a reciept or two

  5. my tire lock

5 People to Tag:
(I am stealing from Deb here)

You! In my comments section or on your blog (trackback to let me know so I can go read)!

i love sunsets

Sunset at NanWan in Kenting

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good!
    His faithful love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods.
   His faithful love endures forever.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords.
   His faithful love endures forever.
. . .
Give thanks to him who made the heavenly lights –
    His faithful love endures forever.
the sun to rule the day,
   His faithful love endures forever.
and the moon and stars to rule the night.
   His faithful love endures forever.
(Psalm 136:1-9)

i love sand


How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
How vast is the sum of them! 

Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand.
(Psalm 139:17-18)

I love to sit on sand and run my hands through it. I love to bury my feet and squish sand between my toes.  I like to build sandcastles.  I enjoy walking along the beach just where the waves crash into the seashore.   

Yep, it is true.  I love sand.


happy 4th!

Our Flag - Our Pride by jeffclow.

Happy 4th of July!!

Even though I love living in Taiwan and know this is where I am supposed to be, I am very proud to be an American.  I am thankful for the men and women who over the last couple of centuries shed their blood and gave their lives for my freedom and the rights I have as a US citizen.  I am thankful for our amazing Founding Fathers and the way they, well uh, founded our country.

I won't be attending any great 4th of July bbqs, parties or family reunions, but Sam decided we should eat McDonald's tonight.  Then we'll come home and wave some flags and talk about what it means to be an American.

over at sallie's

BobI have made my nominations for the 2006 Blogs of Beauty Awards, have you?

If not, you should consider doing so!!  Which beautiful, God-honoring blogs with female authors have blessed you or encouraged you?  Let Sallie know before this Sunday.

Find out how to make your own nominations here.

on a known path to . . .

jungle path to snorkle cove

This is a picture of me on a jungle path to a secret snorkeling location. 

After following three jungle paths Sam and I arrived at the best little cove for snorkeling.  Sam and I had the best time looking at coral and fish under the water.  It was a blast!  In fact, we did it for three days in a row while on our little mini vacation to the southern tip of Taiwan. 

It was so fun seeing schools of angle fish and having little yellow and black zebra fish swim right around our heads.  Actually, seeing all the different kinds of fish makes me marvel at the creativity of our God.  He is just amazing!



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