Tuesday, June 26, 2012

fighting the heat

First of all our good friend Emilio (far right) had a big chinese test to take that determines his future in China so we took him out for a good luck dinner!
This is our gang..

Then on Saturday afternoon we decided to fight the heat...
Lately in Changsha it has been SO hot and SO humid. kill. me. now.
Summer is supposed to be the time of year that you are always outside but where
I live you stay inside or you lose twenty pounds of sweat the second you walk outside.
and the whole garment thing doesn't make this much easier if you know what I mean.
Anyways we decided to go down town and check out some shops.
Then we went and saw Mirror Mirror..it twas a good day.

Due to the one child policy twins are even more exciting to see in China:)

Then on Sunday after we listened in on church we got lunch at our favorite restaurant.

This is Liu Jie. 
She is the one who gave me my chinese name so
 I guess that makes her my chinese mama:)

and then she gave us this present? This past weekend was a holiday in China called 
The Dragon Boat Festival....
When we asked our chinese friends what they do for the holiday
they just said they don't have school or work and they eat lots of food.
Apparently this little contraption is a kind of food they eat on this holiday.

then we saw these months celebrating the holiday in their own special way....

on our long walk to the island this random group of lovely's asked us to take a photo with them:)

photography posing at it's best.

and this is what was in side of that contraption...rice. Big surprise!

and then I beat Chance like 20 times in a row at speed. 
let's just say I did not have a happy husband.
this man is ALMOST as competitive as me which makes for intense games.

The face of a winner!

then we finished off the night with a little shao kao...that is chinese for bbq. and it is delicious.
It is so awesome. Every night these people come out and set up hundreds
of chairs and tables and they set up about twenty grills or so. 
It is one of our favorite things to eat and it is so cheap.

those stands are the grills. you gotta love China.

grilled chicken, bell pepper and sausage.

this photo goes out to the one and only Alexis Alger.
I like sausage. 

believe it or not that hole in the wall opens up to a street of about 20 restaurants.

Chance my b-ball star.

I have no clue what it says but I think it is sweet.

I love me some Chancelor.

Well folks that's all I got for today.
The biggest news right now is Staci and Andrew will be here in 2 days!
I cannot wait to hug the crap out of her when she gets off that plane:)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

talking to space.

Do you ever feel alone?
I'm surrounded by people all the time...Chance hardly leaves my side yet I feel alone and lost. 
How can someone feel alone in a city of 6 million people?
I hate that this feeling is completely up to me to get rid of yet I can't.
I think one reason for this feeling is how much I miss my family and how little we talk.
Life get's in the way and the time difference makes it almost impossible.
It always seems like when I can talk they can't and when they can talk I'm asleep.
Another reason is this adventure is wonderful but sometimes I feel like I'm not progressing.
Don't get me wrong I'm progressing in ways that I never thought I could but the things in my
life that I'm usually trying to progress in I'm not anymore.
I'm sure none of this makes sense but I just need someone to talk to and seeing as it is 2:30 am back in
Utah my go to people are asleep.

Being so far away makes me realize how easy it would be for my old life to just move on with out me.
My family would continue having family parties and cabin trips.
My friends would try to get together for lunch dates and talk about old times.
Life would just keep going...as it should but it is a crazy thought.

I know I have many people back home who love me and are excited to have me home
but it is still a thought that pops in my quite often these days...
I haven't been able to talk to my mama in over two weeks.
I'm not sure why we haven't been able to get in touch but it has been hard not talking to her.

Well enough of that.
Thanks for listening. Let's move on to something happier.
What a crazy thing. I never thought my life would take me here let alone my hubby:)
So last month we decided to get pictures taken by a photographer in China.
I was curious how they run things and it was super cheap so we thought why not!
We took pictures in traditional chinese clothes...hilarious. Chance at least.
My dress is one that they would have worn back in the 20's but Chance's outfit
is from like a 1000 years ago haha! He wanted to wear it so he did and we had a good laugh!
These are just a peak. My friend came with us and he took some with my camera. 
The real ones should be done next week.

This shot by far is the funniest. Everyone kept saying "look at those foreigners!" 
(but in Chinese of course)

So Chance.

my next post will be happier I promise.

Friday, June 22, 2012

A Chinese Wedding

Weddings in China are a little bit different...
Different traditions, food and ceremony.
Our chinese friends Eric and Sophia were nice enough to take us to a traditional chinese wedding.
They put us up in a nice hotel for the night because the activities start at 8 am!

Most of the time we didn't understand what they were doing and why but it was really cool to see the traditions they have. 

You gotta love that smile...he is definitely in love with wife. This is the look he gave her when he saw her walk down the isle:)

The first thing that happens in a chinese wedding is the groom comes to the brides home to get her...
 (or in this case her hotel room, her hometown is too far away)
The single friends of the bride are waiting at the door to let him in...They won't let him in unless he gives them enough money though! That part was my favorite of the whole day. 
The girls just kept saying nope that's not enough, we need more to let you in! 
and let me tell you...they raked in the dough!

Once they let him in the room they wouldn't let him in her room until he sang her a song...the funniest thing is they kept saying he needed to sing an english song so your foreign friends could understand! 
He tried but didn't succeed, instead he sang a chinese song and it was beautiful:)

Then they made him and his best man do a river dance! Hilarious!

and I'm not quite sure why they did this but it was still funny! 
Thats the groom putting lipstick on the best man!

Another tradition they have is they hide the brides shoes...the groom can't take her to the wedding without the wedding shoes so he has to search the whole room to find them. Then he will put them on her feet:)

Next they make promises to the brides parents and the grooms parents...that part was really sweet and very emotional. I couldn't understand a word yet I still cried.

oh and randomly through out the day someone from the wedding party would go set off hundreds of firecrackers! The chinese sure love their fireworks.

Wedding favor full of candy:)

Okay now the ceremony...this part was very interesting. It is kind of western style in the way that they have an isle and the father of the bride walks her down and gives her to the groom but....
They take it to another level. It's almost like a big sports event! They have an announcer and they dim the lights when the bride comes out. They play loud music and it isn't very spiritual. 
Even though it was loud and a little crazy I could still feel the love these two had for each other. 

Then immediately after the ceremony her friends come up and they throw the bouquet! 

This experience was definitely a different one. 
I'm so glad we got to see a chinese wedding...it was really fun to meet their families and to see the love they all have for each other!

It was fun to take pictures as well... I just have my old camera with me so the quality of the photos aren't the best but it was great to be lookin through that lens again capturing moments of love and laughter!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

a normal wednesday over seas:)

So as you know I am teaching at a pre-school...talk about hard work. But we have lots of fun and only learn a couple words each day! They learn so fast though it is amazing! 
Last month I taught them "I love you" so now every time I walk into teach they yell.... 
"I love you, MeiLi lao shi!" 
(MeiLi is my chinese name and lao shi means teacher)
It is seriously so cute! 
It is a challenging job but extremely rewarding. Not one teacher at the school speaks english so I play a lot of sharades and use my chinese dictionary a lot! We make it work though:)
The teachers are all really helpful and have been able to even teach me some chinese.
My chinese is coming a long. I now know over 40 characters! It is an extremely hard language to learn but I am trying. We'll see if I get any better next semester.

So back to the pre-school.... I teach there twice a week for just two hours. There are 4 different classes from ages 2-5, they are so little! Every time I have to say goodbye they all run to me and give me hugs and high fives. They are obsessed with my blue eyes and they always say "ni de wei shen me you lan se yan lian me? wo de yan lian hei se!" Which means "why do you have blue eyes? I have black eyes!"
How funny is that. Something so normal to us is un heard of over here! I'm the first American these kids have ever met so they are always asking funny questions. One of my older students asked me why I have such big eyes and I didn't know what to say so I just told her because my mom has big eyes! 
Being around these kids always makes me so happy we are living in China.

The 3 year olds!

K, this little girl is SO smart! She is three and the other day I said to her "Hello, how are you?" and she responded with "I'm fine, thank you, and you?" INSANE!
She always wants me to hold and she is a chunk! haha I love her so much:)

These little kiddos are the 2 year olds!

The 4 year olds!

The 5 year olds!

This little boy is my favorite, I want to take him home with me!
Everyday he tells me thank you for teaching him english and that he loves me! Makes me want to cry every time:)

Well that's enough from China for now!
Much love:)