Friday, December 28, 2012

Running a Race

Hello Friends,

Hope your Christmas Season has been filled with joy, peace, and love! I still cannot believe that I am done with student-teaching... and almost a graduate of college! Time flies by so quickly!

Since student-teaching I have been busy spending time with friends here in Thailand... after school was out we headed UP to Chiang Rai. It was amazing trip going down memory lane. My family came to Thailand 6 years ago and we stayed the whole summer in Chiang Rai.

The trip with my family definitly impacted my life in so many ways. I gained a deeper understanding of how broken our world is and gained a desire to teach overseas someday. I also left my heart in Thailand so it was good to come back and get it again.

The trip I took this time to Chiang Rai involved a stop at the night market, ice cream at Swensen's, tour of the International School, and a ride on OSTRICH!!! It was such a great trip!

The Ostrich Ride

Also, this week I ran in 10k race with my roommate around the moto in Chiang Mai. It was such a great race!

10K Race! :)

What a race I have been running since college has started!! I am definitly ready for a slower past for awhile... hopefully this spring semester... we will see!

Enjoy the Christmas Season!


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Silly Smiles

Wow, friends!

I am officially done with student-teaching! It has been an amazing experience with so many different emotions that I decided to summarize my experience with a few simple words:

Blessing. Joy. Smiles. Passion. Learner. New Discovery. Flexibility. 1st grade. 4th grade. Prayer. Lesson Plans. Journal Entries. Tiredness. Fun. Laughter. Impacting. Heart Captured. Teachable. Connections. Mentor. Stretching. Encouraging. Overwhelmed. Thankful. Exciting. So good.

I'm so thankful for my two mentoring teachers and the grace they gave me as I taught/learned in their classrooms. I cannot wait to have a classroom of my own! I'm in the process of pursuing the Lord for where He wants me to go in the Fall!

Silly 4th graders


Monday, December 10, 2012


Hello Friends!

This week has been filled with adventures, outings, good conversations, and moments of learning:

  •  Celebrated the King's Birthday by having a day off from school and getting my toe nails painted with snowflakes
  • Was involved in the Elementary Track and Field day (discovered that I would love to be a track coach and a teacher someday)
  •  Celebrated Sinterklaas (Dutch Christmas) in Thailand
  •  Had my first baking attempt in Thailand: No-Bake Cookies (they were a success)
  •  Engaged in good conversations about mentors, fears, cultures, and singlness
  •  Went Christmas shopping at the Saturday Night Market
  •  Served hot coco at Christmas in the Park (an outreach that Grace International does to share the Christmas story with the neighborhood)
  • Walked 8 miles to Buddist Temple and prayed for Chiang Mai
  • Had an adventure finding a coffee shop with a friend
  •  Rode on a motorbike and thought that I was in Montana's winter for a second because it was so cold
  • Climbed up and stood under a waterfall (so amazing... words cannot describe how amazed I was)
  •  Wrote my very last student-teaching journal entry (Yay!!!)

Hope you have had wonderful week and some adventures along your way! Life would be so boring without them!

Love, Daniella

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Thankful Heart

Hello friends,

I am so sorry that I have not written in my blog for a while. It is something that is on my to-do list each day, but it always seems to be the last thing to get done.

Today, I want to write about what I am thankful for especially since being in Thailand. I know that Thanksgiving was like 3 weeks ago, but it is one of my favorite holidays. I love Thanksgiving because it is a time to be with "family and friends" and remember all that you are thankful.

This year I have learned a lot more about living with graditude- it has change my outlook on life completely. The book that jump started this change in my life was One Thousands Gifts by Ann Voskamp. I encourage you to read it and pursue a life of gratitude. It is so refreshing.

                                                         I am so so thankful for....
-my faith
-my family
-my friends
-amazing connections with people all around the world
-the passion I have for teaching
-being overseas and learning through a different culture
-love, joy and thankfulness
-my student-teaching experience
-my professors at Taylor University
-my housemates in Indiana & Thailand
- chocolate
-fresh bananas
-beautiful sunsets and sunrises 
- and learning to rest

My thankful list could on and on about little the things I thankful such as my toothbrush, but I just wanted to express with you the things that I am especially thankful for in the season that I am in right now.

Thanksgiving this year was spent at an International Teaching Conference. For my thanksgiving dinner I had pizza and pie in the hotel lobby with some dear friends that I have made here in Thailand. We went around the circle and said what we were thankful for... it was so great! Don't worry I did have a wonderful Thanksgiving meal with my roommates and a family from school with turkey, stuffing, yummy potatoes, and pumpkin pie!!!

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Love, Daniella

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Hello Sweet Friends,

The last couple of weeks have been packed with teaching, lesson planning, exploring, deepening friendships, learning, leaning on God, and laughter!

Some highlights:
  • Teaching my 4th grade class in math, and reading (this week I am adding bible)
  • One of my students thanking me for teaching her
  • Another student telling me at 8 o'clock at night that I needed to go home from school and get some rest (it was so sweet)
  • Prayer time with my roommates
  • Going to Thai church and worshipping with Thai believers
  • Getting a massage after a waking up with a sore neck
  • Eating mango and sticky rice with coconut milk
  • Hiking Doi Inthanon National Park (it was beautiful)
  • Drinking Starbucks (a moment of being homesick)
  • Soaking in the beauty of Thailand
  • Holding a sweet baby boy at Agpapa home
Of course there are so many stories that go with each of these hightlights and so many others things that I could add to this list, but I just wanted to give you a glimpse of the past two weeks.  To say the least I am LOVING Thailand and all that God is teaching me during my time here.

Enjoy the week,

Sunday, November 4, 2012

My "New" Home....

Hello Friends,

Hope your week has been wonderful. I am soaking up every minute in Thailand. I have differently fallen in love with the culture, the slow pace of life, the food, the people, and of course Grace International!

This week I got to meet my students and observe my teacher. It was a wonderful week of learning and watching my mentoring teacher teach as well as other teachers at Grace. My teacher is such a kind, gentle-spirit and loving teacher. She has such a heart for each student in her classroom. I am so thankful for her and all that I am going to learn during my time in her classroom. A highlight of my week has been praying each morning with my teacher for the day, for the students and for wisdom as we teach. What blessing to give all things to the Lord.

Also, this week I had the awesome privilege of going to Agape Home. Agape Home provides a loving family for 80+ children aged 0-21 years. Most children at Agape home have been impacted by HIV. My heart melted the minute I was handed a little boy named Benjamin. It was a precious time of feeding him a bottle and praying over his future. To learn more about Agapa Home you can click on the link.

 Here are some pictures of my new "home" and my classroom:

My "new" home from the outside!

My bedroom

Our Living Room

Our Kitchen
My Classroom!

This week I am starting to teach some lessons to my 4th graders. I will be teaching Math and Reading! I can't wait!

Enjoy your week,

Sunday, October 28, 2012

A Relaxing Time at the Beach:

A blessing is what I can describe this past week in Thailand. I arrived in Chiang Mai on Friday and left on Sunday to Phuket (which is an island connected to Thailand).  It was amazing time of relaxing by the pool, lying on the beach, developing relationships and reflecting on my first student-teaching placement in Upland. I also had a blast getting to know some of the teachers who teach at Grace. They are such wonderful, caring, loving and helpful people. I am so blessed.


I arrived back in Chiang Mai late Thursday night so that I could have some time to get ready for my next class! J I met my mentoring teacher Friday morning for breakfast and it was a wonderful time getting to know each other. My mentoring teac her is such a lovely, caring, and understanding lady. I am way beyond excited to learn from her over the next few months.  Tomorrow is the day that I get to meet my students… Yay!

This weekend I have spent some quality time with one of my roommates getting to know her better. We adventure out last night to a clothing market and ate Thai bbq with some friends. It was an adventure and so much fun trying new things.  Today, I went to church and later tonight I am going to eat pizza with an admission counselor from Taylor and some high school students who are considering coming to Taylor… how fun!  
Please keep me updated with your life, and share any prayer requests you have!


Saturday, October 20, 2012

Oh, the place You'll Go... Thailand!

Hello dear friends,

As some of you know I attempted to start a blog two years ago and it did not last very long, but I have decided to attempt again.

The reason I want to start blogging again is because I am off on a great adventure of student-teaching in Thailand! Before I left the United States many of you, family and friends, asked if I could keep you updated on my life in Thailand so I thought no better way than to keep a blog!

I will try my best to update my blog at least once or twice a week. My hope is that through this blog I am able to share with you what God is teaching me, show you what my life here looks like and to keep in contact with you!

Student-teaching overseas has been a dream of mine since I was a freshman in high school. It is so crazy to think that it is coming true!

I started on my journey from Indianapolis where a dear friend drove me to the airport at 3am in the pouring rain. I boarded my flight to Atlanta. From Atlanta I flew 15 hours to Seoul, Korea and finally arrived in Chiang Mai, Thailand 29 hours later. Waiting at the airport where two sweet ladies (one being my housemate) to pick me up. We arrived at my "new" home for the next two months and it hit me “I am in Thailand”.  I was shown around the home then off to bed I went sleeping straight through the night.

Day 2 in Thailand found me waking up to the blazing sun, eating at a yummy restaurant (fresh avocado salad), and grocery shopping, unpacking, and watching a movie with my housemates.

Today, I am excited because I am traveling to Phuket with 12 other singles from Grace to enjoy Fall Break at the beach. I am looking forward to resting and getting to know people who work at Grace.

The Lord has been so faithful to me through this journey of getting me to Thailand. I am so thankful for the safe travels and the JOY I have experienced so far. I know that I will experience hard times, but for now I am resting in fact that God is watching over me.

Please keep me updated with your life, and share any prayer requests you have!