Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Hello Chinese Government - it is FREEZING!!!

So this is one thing I will definitely NOT miss about China!
The government controls the thermostats in our houses here (along with many other things)

But....they wouldn't turn the AC on before a certain date in May, alhto it was super super hot!......and worse - they are refusing to turn on the heat for us until Nov. 15, 2010!

HELLO - it is 28 degrees in our house right now - yeah, that's right, below freezing and i have 2 little babies who are so cold and I am trying to keep from freezing, along with myself. Griffin can be bundled, and has done ok cuz he is all swaddled up and covered, but Cashee refuses to wear socks to bed, add another blanket in his crib, and he never stays under the covers so instead he has woken up 3 times in the past 2 hours with freezing cold hands and feet and shivering and crying.

We are flying today and i really could have used a good nights sleep. Instead, I am listening to how there is a pizza and broccoli in Cash's room (from his dream i am assuming). We gave all our blankets away except the one on our own bed so Chip and I can't split up, and we are all cold and it makes it really hard to get out of bed and get back to packing!

For the sake of all my friends with small children - please decide to turn it on a week or 2 earlier!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Massages brought home!

Is that what you think you are seeing? Sid and Chip lounging on our couch while 2 chinese girls massage their feet and legs?

Yep - that is correct! I have been joking with these 2 for awhile about bringing the girls up to our apartment to give us all massages so I could have one too! And they made it happen! Thanks to Sid's chinese persuasion skills and us being right across the street they agreed and we all enjoyed a great foot, leg, and shoulder massage on friday night after the kids went down to bed!

The only thing missing? You Ri Ri!
We will truly miss the cheap and great massages here!

ZOO Adventure!!!

Barney has a song that talks about the "zoosie zoo!" - and i love it.....ALMOST as much as a I LOVED the Beijing zoo! We had such a great time at playgroup going here a couple weeks ago!

We saw lots of crocodiles...in one space the glass was cracked - which made it a little scary to me!
the kids had a great time running everywhere!
Fun playing on the turtle...cheese!

Fun playing on the rocks with Tate
These two wouldn't look for the pic
I always manage to see animals mating when we go to the zoo - this time was no exception --- this ram was really going after his lady - it was quite a sight!
Cool animals (not sure what they are)
Family pic of the 3 of us!
Cash was excited to see the giraffes
Snacking on some yummy popcorn at the hippo and rhino place
Sign - no climbing: EVERYONE was climbing and taking pics
A bunch of us - we were for sure a site with all our kids in such a big group!

My favorite part - the big pandas - separate exhibit and they are the cutest animals - look like giant teddy bears! LOVED them!
Taking a nap!
covering his eyes to hide from the bright sun1
These 2 were buddies - checking everything out together!
My cute smiley Griffin at 3 months!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I hope they call me on a mission!

Every night when Cash goes to bed he asks for "1 song, mommy, 1 song!" (usually followed by a request for 1 more)

Whenever Chip sings to him he sings the same song: I hope they call me on a mission!

Today, when Sam got his call I was talking to Cash about how he was leaving on a mission - Cash responded - "I go on mission too mommy, i go when i bigger....i bigger!"

I hope and pray and dream that this will be the case - and you will follow in your Uncle Sam's footsteps and go on a mission one day too!

Congrats Sam
Isn't he one handsome missionary?
Lansing, Michigan
Reporting December 15, 2010

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Peeping Toms!!!

Ok, so window washers are not really peeping Toms - or most of them probably aren't.....but i had an encounter with a few and a very awkward moment the other day!

The complex sent out a notice that the windows would be washed on certain days, and to keep the windows shut - i did that! However, the next day I walked into the kitchen in just my underwear to grab something for the fridge and turned around to pretty much come face to face with a window washer dude! Yes, i was moriied - should i act like i didn't see him, should i run and hide, should i duck and hide, should i just go on as if everything is normal -- yeah, it was embarrassing! Hey tho - wash the windows on the days you said because i had my windows closed then!

As if that isn't bad enough --- also a few days ago on a separate occasion i was trying on some pants after getting home from the markets underneath one of my longer shirts --- well, i took them off and went to change Cash's poopy diaper -- as always, i ran it out into the hall garbage so our house would not wreak of the smell, and in so doing forgot to put back on my other pants --- USUALLY, this would not be a problem as no one is ever in the stair well, however - of course because i am pantsless there happened to be some kind of training and an entire group of guards came clomping down the stairs right as i lifted the lid! Oh, boy - well, at least it was a long shiirt and looked more like a mini-dress - altho they probably were wondering what the weird spandexy things were i was wearing - that is if they even took time to notice that it was weird - i am hoping they just thought of it as normal since the fashion here is very different and pretty much anything is accepted --- maybe they couldn't even tell i wasn't wearing pants - and i just tried to play it off and hope that the smell of the diaper also didn't make them pass out!

Ahhhh, great stephanie moments!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Temple of Heaven

2 Weeks ago we went to Temple of Heaven - a big tourist site here in Beijing! My computer broke down right after so haven't uploaded any photos til now - a little catch up from our fun experience there!

Chip and Cash at the circular mount - really cool!

Natives playing in the park there
Check out this outfit mis-match - was going to wait til my fashion post, but since computer broke thought i better just post the rest as i go!!! Think this trend will start in the US?
Temple of Heaven
One thing i will truly miss is seeing the beautiful brides in their colorful wedding dresses
(often red) taking pictures at all the tourist sites - this one was gorgeous!
So Pretty - love the hat and necklace!
Love the chinese kids in this picture!
The temple had the moon still showing right above it and was glowing - so beautiful!
Peek mommy!
family shot taken by a really excited chinese person!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


I know it is not a good characterisic to be bitter about things...and i should just get over it........but i just hate listening to friends who say how much they love nursing because it just melts the pounds away!

OK friends, it doesn't do that for everyone! And I don't always love nursing because for me it actually does the opposite effect. I hold on to every last oz of fat possible until i am done nursing, and then lose 10 really quick usually, but i have to work very very hard to get any baby weight to come off during this period. It is very frustrating, and yet I just try to tell myself I am being unselfish by nursing because really it is doing my body no favors. (sigh)

I just want to be selfish and stop for this reason....but i won't!
Oh well - ok - now i have vented - i am over it!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

3, 2, 1................................

3 months old today!
I can't believe my little chinese souvenir baby is already 3 months old!

He is so sweet! 3 things I love about Griffi!
1. He is the best sleeper i know....i have to wake him up almost every morning around 6:30 or 7 to eat so I can go to gym, and often he sleeps from 9 pm to 7 am! What an angel!
2. He loves to babble and coo and just will smile and laugh with me all the time!
3. He LOVES the front pack and will sleep the entire time we go somewhere when he is in it -- great easy baby to take places!

We love you Griffi!

only 2 weeks left from today til we fly back to the US! As excited as i am to come home for all the festivities and holidays, I am actually really sad to leave ( i know, shocker!)

And, finally - 1 very nice stranger who got a cab to stop for him and then said "you were here first - why don't you get in!" True chivalry, and a true gentleman! He was from America too, and probably new to Beijing as he definitely hasn't learned taxi etiquette, or lack therof LOL!
We appreciated it a lot tho!

Happy Wednesday!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

YES, That Really Just Happened......

#! - We were eating a lovely dinner at Cirro Pomodorros (best Italian place in Beijing) with friends and had finished and the kids were runnin around the courtyard on the outside patio. Cash ran over to a guy sitting at a table across from us, picked up his jacket sitting on the ledge of the little pond that went the length of the place, dividing the restaurants, and threw it in the water!!! Oh man! The guy was really nice to Chip and said it was ok, but then in Chinese asked to be re-seated away from the "idiot americans!" Thanks Britton for translating his request - i guess we deserved that......sometimes it is just better to not understand what they say about us! :)

#2 - I was coming home in my cab and almost to my house when we saw a car, in broad daylight i might add, flip a U turn and smack right into the cab in front of it, which then hit the car parked on the side of the road --- uh hello! They got out for 2 seconds til everyone started honking (including my cab driver) - then got in their cars and drove off! No police or insurance to help here!

#3 - Chip was trying on jeans at the market and had on a pair and was looking at them.....the girl at the booth gave his bum a little pat and told him he had a "Sexy A!" I know he does have a great bum - but woman - he is taken - so hands off....and anyways, that won't help you make a sell!

#4 - the bank of China decided to just close for 4 days (october 4-7) for a system upgrade - with no warning to anyone - not even to the staff! No ATM's work, can't use your card at the stores - good thing we pulled out a bunch of money the day before --- hello! What bank closes for 4 days and shuts off all access to any accounts? Never heard of something so crazy!

I am trying to write down all the funny happenings here before we leave - and yes, I am actually really getting very sad to leave my great home here!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Where Do You See.....

A bike pulling a trailer of trash going the wrong direction in a traffic jam...

A car going against traffic on the freeway...

A cab driver honking incessantly at a pedestrian and driving straight towards them and then swerving to miss them at the last second....and doing that again to a biker... and again to another pedestrian all in one trip...

A man pushing about 50 shopping carts on a main road, causing us to have to go around him...

and a cab driver stopping on a two lane road and causing a major road block to try to turn around and go the other way to come pick us up......

ONLY one place - Beijing!
All in a weekend! Gotta love it!!!