Thursday, November 28, 2013


I had a wonderful thanksgiving dinner last night with members of my Beijing community. I made mashed potatoes and the green bean casserole. Here is a picture of the feast we had that included a large turkey!

In the spirit of giving thanks, I wanted to take a moment and share some of the many things I am grateful for this year.
~Being able to be His light in one of the biggest and most important cities in the world.
~Supportive and encouraging friends back in the States
~His timing.  Though things do not always happen like I planned, His timing is perfect and things
 work out much better with Him in control.
~The great progress I have made learning Mandarin this year.
~For a group of friends who constantly amaze me with their ability to love and serve those around them.
~That I am put in situations outside of my comfort-zone which causes me to grow.
~Skype and the internet which allows me to easily stay connected with everyone across the globe.
~Being able to learn something new everyday.
~Growing in my relationship with my Father and learning to hear His voice in new ways.

And I get to have another Thanksgiving meal tomorrow with another friends! I so thankful for the blessings of good food and fellowship.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Grammar Lesson

I wanted to share with you all a portion of my language text book so you can see how I am learning to speak, read, and write Chinese.

This dialogue captures a discussion between David and Yamamoto about last night's World Cup game. Here is my translation:

Yamamoto: David, why are your eyes red?  Did you stay up late to watch the World Cup game last night?
David: I'm a big fan of the French team so of course I watched! Did you watch the game?
Yamamoto: I was busy preparing for the HSK exam so I am extremely tired.  Last night I watched the part of the game and then fell asleep.  What was the final score?
David: 1 to 1.  Right at the end of the game the Korean team scored a goal.
Yamamoto:  Really? I thought that at the end of the first half France was winning.
David: During the first half France was playing really well.  But, during the second half Korea was playing well, with France playing poorly.  The more I watched the more anxious and angry I became.
Yamamoto: There's no reason to be angry. That was France's first game, trust that the team will play better in the next game.
David: I hope France's next game will go smoothly. It's the finals and I want to win!

This dialogue introduced thirteen new words and a new grammatical structure. The new grammar point, 越。。。越,means increasingly, or more and more. In the Chinese transcription I have highlighted the 越。。。越 so you can see how often the text reinforces the new grammar point. The underlined words are the new words found in the dialogue.

山本: 大卫, 你的眼睛怎吗这吗红! 昨天晚上熬夜世界杯了吧?
大卫: 我是法国队的球迷, 当然要看了! 你没看吗?
山本: 最近忙着准备HSK考试, 特别累。昨天晚上我躺着看看比赛, 没想到, 看到一半就睡着了。 最好比分是多少?
大卫: 1 比 1。 比赛快结束的时候, 韩国队进了一球
山本: 是吗? 我觉得上半场韩国队踢不如法国队啊。
大卫: 上半场法国队踢得不错。 可是, 下半场韩国队越踢越好,法国队越踢越, 我越看越着急越看越生气
山本: 别着急, 这只是法国队的第一场比赛, 相信他们会越踢越好的
大卫:  希望法国队能越踢越顺利, 最好能踢进决赛, 再得一次冠军。

While not every dialogue in the textbook is interesting or a conversation I will ever have in real life, it is extremely helpful to be able to learn words in context.  These dialogues help me to understand proper Mandarin grammar and phrasing.  I use 越。。。越 on a daily basis.  When local friends ask how my Chinese lessons are going I say "越学越好“, the more I study the more I improve.