Monday, December 27, 2010

Taiwanese Language

The Taiwan official language is Chinese. There is actually 3 different dialects of Chinese spoken in Taiwan. The main dialect used is Mandarin. It is estimated that 900 million people in the world (1/4 of the world population) speak a dialect of Chinese. Mandarin is spoken by at least half of the people in China as their mother tongue and is the official language of Taiwan and Mainland China.

Chinese is said to be one of the hardest languages to learn if not the hardest. Most of the sounds can be found in the English languages, but the biggest difference is the variation of tones. There are four different tones. The Chart below helps explain how the tones work:

You can pronounce the same sound, but depending on the pitch of your voice, can completely change the meaning of the word.  The picture below demonstrates the different meanings of words by the tone you use.

The written language is also very difficult. They do not use a alphabet like we do but symbols. Education Chinese people can recognize about 6,000-7,000 characters. To read a newspaper you need to know about 2,000-3,000 characters. There are over 40,000 characters, including obscure, variant, rare, and archaic characters, however less then a quarter of these are still commonly used today.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Sick Christmas

The 3rd annual Sick Christmas Party aka Dale Nolan Jr.'s Special Invite Chaos Christmas Party was a blast. You were required to were an ugly sweater and bring a gift for the gift exchange (which you sport for the day).

We had our gift exchange, which is demonstrated by the photo above.

Then we played Two Story Clue (invented by Rebecca and myself). The game took us about 2 hours to complete. There was double the weapons, double the rooms, and 7 players. (double the fun!).

After our game of clue ended, we baked some peanut butter chocolate cookies.

Taiwan Religion

Taiwan is a land of many different beliefs. They practice Buddhism, Taoism, Catholicism, Christianity, Mormonism, the Unification Church, Islam, and Hinduism, as well as native sects such as Yiguandao and others.

Taiwan has freedom of religion, they embrace their tradition while also welcoming new beliefs into their country.

Taiwan has a population of 23 million people

35% of that population puts their faith in Buddha

While 33% are Taoist, some even consider themselves both Taoist and Buddhist.

Many believe in a collection of beliefs engrained in Chinese culture termed "Chinese folk religion"

These beliefs include ancestor worship, belief in ghosts and spirits, among other things.

It is estimated that up to 80% of the population believe in some form of traditional folk religion.

There is a small percentage that consider themselves to be ProtestantRoman CatholicSunni MuslimChurch of Scientology, the Baha'i, the Jehovah's Witnesses, the Mahikari Religion, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons) and the Unification Church , Presbyterians, the True Jesus ChurchBaptistsLutheransSeventh-day Adventists, and Episcopalians

From the list above that is only 475,000 people out of the entire population of Taiwan of 23 million, which means a even lower number of Evangelical Christians.

As I teach English I will not only be ministering to the country of Taiwan, but will also be training our students to better reach out to their own country.

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(These are not my photos)

Friday, December 17, 2010

SYME: Taiwan English School Promo

This is a promotion video used to share will people around Taiwan about SYME.

It is all in Chinese, but it is fun to watch anyway.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Shred the Sleds Promotion

This Sunday (Dec. 19, 2010) is the Shred the Sled session at 1:30 p.m.

This event is for the "extreme". Those who want to get gnarly on a sled with some jumps and rails. Sleds only. (no snowboards, skis, snow skate, etc.)  The purpose is to take the basic idea of skateboarding, taking to the sledding genre.

What to Bring:
1. Warm Clothes
2. Your own Sled
3. A Shovel (for building more stuff)

If you would like to come contact via facebook or email.
We need more help building more ramps and making the ones we have better, if you would like to help build, thursday between 1-5 we will be building more ramps.


4ft Jump 

It has a 8ft gap to the landing ramp.

(when the jump was at 2ft high we could gap out 8ft)

The Straight rail.

There is about a small hill to help you onto the rail, with a 1-2ft drop off the end.

There are banks on the side to slide off the edge instead of hitting the drop.

Hand Rail.

Its has a 3-4ft drop.

This is probably the most ghetto object.

You ride down the hill onto the platform, which sticks out, giving you the height for the rail.
Wall Ride.

This is probably my favorite object.

It has a curved ramp that slides you right into position for the wall ride, with a landing ramp on the other side.

You can probably easily get enough speed to just launch off the end of it.

I have some other additions to the ramps but you will have to wait for the event/video to see them.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Ministry in Taiwan

This is a top view of Taiwan.
Taiwan is located 100 miles off the the south east coast of China.
It is 250 miles long.
March 23, 2011, I will be moving to Taiwan to become an English teacher at a school called SYME with the organization Word of Life.
I will be gone for 2 years, coming back December 2012.

This is a photo of Taichung, Taiwan.

This is where I will be living.

Taichung is the 3rd largest city in Taiwan.

1,040,725 people live in this city.

I will be living in an apartment among them.

There is a total of 20.8 million people who live in Taiwan.
Over the course of the 2 years I am there I will be learning to speak Mandarin Chinese.
As I learn the language my ministry to the people I am living among will expand.

The chinese dialect is one of the hardest languages to learn.
More then 800 million people speak Mandarin Chinese.

Taiwan currently has the tallest building in the world towering at 1,644 ft.

They also have some of the fastest trains in the world called "Bullet Trains", going up to 186 mph.

93% of the Taiwanese population believe in Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism.

That is about 20.4 million people who believe in one of these three religions.

While there is 2.6% protestant Christians.

That is 605,000 people out of a population of 20.8 million.

These statistics is the main reason I want to go to Taiwan. The people of Taiwan really need to hear about Jesus Christ.

SYME stands for School of Youth Ministry in English.

I will be teaching English, discipleship, and teaching the Bible

For 13 hours a day students are only aloud to speak English.

About 20 students come a semester (8 months).

SYME trains them in not only learning English but teaches them more about the Bible and ways to share Christ.

I fell in love with Asia as I learned about the need for Christ in their country from talking to students when I went to the Word Of Life Bible Institute.

I need to raise $2,600 for set up fees (transportation, visa, and missionary training)

I also need $1,200 monthly support.

If you would like to support the ministry please CLICK HERE

If you would like to learn more about what I am doing please email me at

Friday, December 10, 2010

Winter Edit

I'm working on a winter video.

Field of Snowmen

We got some more snow fall, the sun was shinning bright, making the snow perfect for rolling snowmen. The first rolled together by myself within half an hour. Kurtis rolled his own also. Then we made one big one with the remaining snow left in our yard. The tallest snowman is probably about 8ft tall. This puts the snowman count to 4 so far.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Martin Fobes and Deezle Barn Sesh

Probably the two best skaters in Michigan, shredding the best home skatepark (at Martin's house).

Learning Chinese

Photo from Google
I have begun learning chinese beyond trying to studying it online. I am now being taught through skype from a former Word of Life Student, Iris. She lives in Hong Kong right now and is willing to take the time out of her week to teach me chinese every other day.

I also have gotten in contact with a friend of my cousin's who went to Taiwan as part of his ministry on the ship "Doulos". Betty is going to skype with me once a week.  Being able to hear someone speak Chinese and ask them conversation is going to really help me to learn pronunciation correctly and culture, giving me a head start for learning Chinese when I get to Taiwan.

I am very excited about learning a 2nd language over the course of the next 2 years, it is something I hope I will be able to use forever.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Snow Alert!

The Government has issued a pollution of snow alert, warning families/children to stay out of the snow and immediate removal of the snow is a highly important. Please begin by rolling balls of snow for fasted removal. I have eliminated 33% of the snow in my house reducing the snow pollution down to only 77%. meaning that I have lowered the amount of snow on my street by 0.3%, in my neighborhood by .03% and in my city by about .003%. As you can see by the little I have down I am keeping the snow pollution. Do your part in removing snow and roll up some snowmen. And maybe we can bring out warm weather back...

Stay Alert for further updates about the snow dilemma!