Saturday, November 28, 2009

Beginning of the End



We have started saying our goodbyes to friends here because many people are heading home for the holidays already. We have just over two weeks left in Shanghai. It felt like a short time at first, but now that we are organized it almost feels like an eternity. We are ready for Christmas! Timmy tells us everyday that he wants to go on an airplane to grandma's house or nai nai's house. He wants to see all his animal friends in Chicago. He even packs his suitcase with all his cars and trains and goes to the front door. How do you explain two weeks to a two year old?

Our friend Polly and her kids made this sign for us.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Heading Home

So it seems our adventure is coming to an end 1 year early. Scott's company decided that it was healthier for our family to live in the USA than in China...we agreed. Due to stress and a combination of a lot of other things, we have mutually decided to come back to Chicagoland. The crazy part is that will happen in three weeks people. AHHHH. ok I'm done.

Anyway, we will be home for the holidays and staying in Lake Zurich. When our renters move out at the end of the year, we'll go back to our house in Lombard. Back to our awesome neighbors, the Ericksons, and our goofy neighbors, Old Man Ed, Big Shot Brad, and all their weirdo-ness, and back to "normal" life. Not looking forward to shoveling the driveway. I am looking strongly forward to grocery stores that don't sell jellyfish in a bag, or dried up in pieces, or at all for that matter. Its been fun and overwhelming, but I'm glad I can see the end. No regrets.

Timmy's excited too, he just doesn't know why!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

My Blog is a Comic Strip!

So way back when we first came to China I posted a story about sterilizing a potato in the apartment we were staying in. At some point months ago I shared it with another website and they turned it into a comic strip in English and Chinese! My story is the one called "Chinese Stories Baked Potato in China."

Check out this link: mandmx.com

Here is a link to my original post: Sterile Potatoes

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Shoplifter???

So yesterday Timmy and I went out in the afternoon to pick up some odds and ends from the local convenience store. My list consisted of: apple juice, baby wipes, and coke. I went first to the store closest to our apartment because it usually carries all three of these items. As in every store in China, you can never be sure that a place that stocked something one day will continue to have it for sale the next. So they were out of AJ, but I bought a six-pack of coke and baby wipes and placed both items in the basket under Timmy's stroller. I did not pay for a bag (bags are not free like in the US) and they did not give me a receipt. I walked about .25 miles down the road to the other store that usually sells apple juice, bought three containers of it, and left.

When I got about two blocks away I felt like someone was following me, which would not be all that unusual considering Timmy's rock star status in this city. So I turned around to confront the possible stalker and see two girls from the store I was just at, arm in arm, looking at me, nervous and giggling. They said a whole bunch of stuff in Mandarin, but the only word I understood was cola and they pointed to my stroller. I laughed at them and vaguely pointed at the store down the road and then just walked away. I half expected them to continue to follow me, but they just giggled more and walked away. Without a receipt, or the ability to give a real explanation, I very well could have stolen it, but why? Its not like I could sneak it into my pocket! Oh well, just another day of ridiculousness.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween


Timmy and his friend John as skeletons.

So Halloween in China is a little odd. Some places celebrate, others don't. We went to two parties but no trick or treating. Timmy's costume was just a skeleton t-shirt. At one party, the restaurant that hosted it hired a "magician." I'm not sure I'd really call him that. He was more of a dirty, creepy guy that in the US would not be allowed within 10 miles of a children's party. One of his magic tricks involved lighting (and taking a few puffs of) a cigarette. I still don't even really know the point of the trick, it wasn't even cool. The faces of the foreign moms in the crowd were priceless. I guess standards for children's entertainment vary by continent! Oh well, it was a fun party anyway.

Tim and Shaun dancing.