Thursday, December 22, 2005
I had every intention of making a little video tour of our apartment right from the front door outside, up the elevator, and then around our home. I wanted to do this as soon as I had things put away perfectly. Well, that hasn't quite happened yet and I don't know that it will happen before we move out. Perhaps I will get around to making a tape for family or something. For now, here are some pictures of our home sweet home.
Above you can see the view you have as you walk down the entrance hallway. There is usually a small table where the Christmas tree is, but you get the general idea. If you turn to the right is our living room/dining room and also the kitchen.
Monday, December 19, 2005
He doesn't seem to do anything...
My nephews (turning three this week and just turned five last week) look at their new baby brother. The middle kid is excited to be a BIG brother now! Now someone has to break it to him that not only will he not be four on his birthday, but that his big brother is no longer four. How will he ever catch up? Oh well, he can do more than the baby can!
Sunday, December 18, 2005
Rob said that I look scary in this picture. Nice thing to say to your wife, isn't it? I don't think it is my best picture ever or anything, but I don't think that merely looking at it is going to cause small children to have nightmares. He says it looks like I didn't want my picture taken. Like he does?
This little girl had already had a million pictures taken and her mom made her go back for another. Doesn't she looked thrilled? She was happier once I took the picture and let her see it. Her mom wasn't showing her the pictures and I think that was part of what had her not so thrilled.
There were cool yo-yo koosh balls for the kids to play with. The balls lit up when you hit them against something. The kids loved them and adults could be seen playing with them too.
And of course, what is a work Christmas party without the appearance of Santa Claus? A lot of the Chinese kids weren't so sure about this guy, even though he spoke Chinese. He did come bearing gifts, but doesn't your mom always teach you not to talk to strangers or take candy or presents from them? I guess it is okay if they are wearing a funky red outfit and wearing a fake beard.
The adults also got presents of sort at the party. All of the official gift stuff that people get over the year is saved up for the Christmas party. Each is numbered and numbers are put into a container. People draw numbers and get to keep the corresponding present. Some are neat and some are not so neat. Luck of the draw. Well, Rob was sure excited to get his as I am sure that you can tell in this picture. Later he did model it a bit for us. We are wondering though exactly why that was given as an official gift and who initially received it. The gifts are usually more business or city related. This just doesn't seem to fit either of those categories. Oh well.
Thursday, December 15, 2005
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...
Today I went to Wu'Ai Market with two Americans who work at the consulate (and live in my building). I managed to buy a 6 foot tree and a wreath for the door for $12.75. I don't think we got ripped off too much. Anyway, I was willing to pay that much. Haven't taken the tree out of the box and don't plan on it this year since we already have one up. Here is a picture of the wreath though, not too bad, huh? I mean, I have seen nicer ones, but it was under $4. If I can find a way to ship them easily and cost effectively perhaps I will get some for gifts next year and mail to people. I was so excited that Karen introduced me to this area of the market. I hadn't ever been in it before I I think I will have to go back to explore some more. They had a lot of great stuff and even if I have to pay the white girl price it should still be a deal.
Here is a picture of me with Rob in front of one of the trees in the hotel lobby. Thought we should try to get a couple of pictures of us together. Seems one or the other of us is always taking the picture so we aren't in them together.
Thanks to customs forms, Rob won't have any suprises this year at Christmas. Evidently he did a dance in the mail room when he got the package that the game I bought him was in. Oh well. I guess this way he gets to be excited twice.
Tomorrow is the Christmas party at the consulate. The Chinese employees will be there too. I hope to get some pictures of the little kids with Santa Claus.
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
Warning: This is a food related post. :)
My poor sister. Will she ever live down telling me that I have too many food related posts? Perhaps if she lived here in China and had to try to figure out how to put together meals she would become more food related too. Since October vendors have been selling these crabapple type things on sticks. The little round red fruits are coated in candy apple type sugar coating. They look pretty good and I see people eating them all the time. I see people eating gross things all the time too, so I suppose popularity isn't really a good gauge for me to use. Anyway, one day when I was walking back from Fu-Mart with my groceries, I saw a guy selling these apple kabob thingies. I figured I would give it a try. I kept my fingers crossed that they were somewhat fresh and that no bird flu infected birds had been licking them. It only cost 12 cents, so you really can't beat the price. At least I think you can't beat the price, perhaps I got ripped off because I am American. I am thinking that 12 cents is a decent price though. And in Chinese currency it is an even amount of 1 kuai so it isn't like a weird amount. It was pretty good. Since it didn't make me sick I will probably get one again sometime. I wish they had more of the sweet sugary coating on them, but I doubt they could ever have enough sugar on for me. It is really sweet as you first bite in, followed by a tart taste that makes you pucker. Good thing there is that sweet coating on the other side to help get rid of that tart sensation. I took a picture to show what it looks like. It is quite an attractive picture. Have you ever tried eating candied fruit on a stick while taking your own picture? It took a couple of shots before I got me in the shot.