Word of the Week Wednesday 1/25/17


Today is short and simple because being on the internet recently has been a difficult task for my mental well-being. Our word this week is:


Language: English

Part of Speech: Adverb, Adjective, Noun, or Verb (We are focusing on one of the adverb meanings)

Pronunciation: for·ward

Definition: Onward so as to make progress.

I chose this word because I am in Cambodia, and many things are happening in America that I feel both connected to and disconnected from. The majority of these issues come down to one thing: moving forward. To quote my friend Rafiki from the Lion King: “Oh, yes, the past can hurt. But the way I see it, you can either run from it or learn from it.” And I say we learn from it and make progress forward. Keep moving, keep going, keep fighting.

Keep Shining,



Word of the Week Wednesday 1/18/17

Weeks seem to be flying by as I am here, although I know there are still about six months left before I leave, I am amazed by how fast that time truly will go. This week’s word of the week is actually not in any of the languages I know/study, which is pretty exciting!

Language: Chinese

Part of Speech: Noun

Pronunciation: Lóng

Definition: Dragon
Now, during my time in Cambodia, I have heard a bit more about Chinese from two people who work with City Church. One is from Singapore, and the other is from Honk Kong. They have taught me some, but that is not where this word comes from. Just this week I started to read the book “First They Killed My Father.” The book is a true story written by a women who was a child during the Khmer Rough regime in Cambodia. The book is about her family, and what Cambodia was like in this time. After starting the book, I found that the author’s family has both a Cambodian and a Chinese heritage. Her name, spelled Loung in English characters, actually means dragon in Chinese. I chose this word because I thought mixing it up with a new language would be fun, but also because this book talks about an important part of Cambodian history that has echoes even today. Neither my heart, nor soul, nor mind can comprehend the lives Cambodians lived during these years, but I want to learn more about the context where I am living. I want to learn more about my Khmer brothers and sisters. And so today I dedicate my word to them, and to learning history, even when it is hard.
Keep Shining,


Word of the Week Wednesday 1/11/17


Welcome back to another wonderful wednesday of words! Today our word is short and simple, albeit very important in our lives. Plus, I have a disagreement with its definition!


Language: English

Part of Speech: Noun

Pronunciation: ˈhōm

Definition: the place where one lives permanently, especially as a member of a family or household.

Home. Now, this definition states that home is somewhere that someone lives permanently, and that has not been my experience. I’ve come to associate this word with a feeling of transience. Home is constantly forming in new places and new ways. I’ve been in Cambodia for about four and a half months now, and can say without a doubt I have a new home forming here. It is hard to imagine leaving this home later this year, but I try to think about that yet. While at college, I felt at home, but I knew that was not permanent because I would leave. In essence, I do not think that you must live in a home permanently. But, I do think that anywhere you consider “home” permanently lives in you. Sure, that sounds a little cheesy and hallmark-y, but I have found it to be true. For every place that I have considered home, there is a piece of my heart that always hold that place. Eventually, I will leave Cambodia, but there will always be a spot for it in my heart. For now, I will feel the love and joy of my current home, and the family that often comes with it.

Keep Shining,


Word of the Week Wednesday 1/4/17

Happy New Year!

2017 is a new year, and it will be full of many new words! Our first word of the week for the year 2017 is one that I really should know by now, but realized yesterday that I do not! So, let’s take a look:


Language: Khmer

Part of Speech: Noun

Pronunciation: Suhm-noo-ah

Definition: Question

I ask a LOT of questions here, so I am not quite sure why it never occurred to me that knowing the word for question might be a good idea! As we enter this new year, I hope that your world is filled with many questions, even if there are not always answers! Stay curious and learn about the wonderful world of words this year!

Keep Shining,