Friday, July 17, 2015

Old Luxu

Being back in Canada is nice. It's our normal and yet, there are so many times when we say "In China we'd do it like this...." and it makes us feel a little home-sick... 
So tonight I was flipping through a couple of shots of Old Luxu (Looshoo... Our town, like many in the west, has an old section and a new section) and I thought they'd be fun to share... 

So you know candy-apples, right? Well these are candy-hawthorn berries! They are very, very tart, and have seeds similar to apple seeds, but paired with the sweet candy coating they're delicious! And cheap too!! ($0.40 a stick) 

Cotton candy is the same as home... 

But again, SO CHEAP! $1 for this huge serving. 

Chemical dogs  I mean, hot dogs, but it's best for your system to take a pass... 

Potty-training, Chinese style! They literally encourage their children to "go" (number 1 or 2!!!!) anywhere they want so you really have to watch where you step on the sidewalks... 

But never fear!! The trusty street cleaners with their custom brooms (made from weeds) will come by and clean it up eventually!! 

I don't miss this.. I noticed how driving in China affected me when I came back here and drove through an intersection.. In a China it's just pure paranoia 100% of the time - especially in intersections, and not a trip on the scooter goes by without someone cutting us off or not stopping at a stop sign, or swerving into on-coming traffic (and directly towards us) and its affected how I drive! 

For now, we are enjoying all of our favorite foods, driving in safe conditions, and spending time with family and friends. 
Bye for now! 

Friday, June 12, 2015


I wasn't prepared for the "scooter culture" that dominates most of Asia, but seeing as how inexpensive they are (I got mine for about $400 brand new) it's no wonder it's the primary mode of transportation in small towns. This is our local grocery store on an average (not busy) night: 

This lot gets so busy that there are sometimes 5 rows of scooters! I'll try and catch a picture next time if there's good light! 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Packing For Our Return

So to continue my saga about living in China and all of the ups and downs, here is what's in my "buy in Canada and bring back to China" list: 
1. Popcorn. They don't know what real, salt and delicious butter popcorn is here. It's a travesty. 
2. Winter clothes. REAL winter clothes. Who knew it would get so &@"&-ing cold here?!?!?
3. HOT weather clothes. Because you need about 3 outfits a day with the humidity here. 
4. Hair products. They don't have these here either so I pay through the nose to get them via Hong Kong... 
5. Shoes!!!! Size 11 female shoes!!! I totally misjudged my shoe needs! 
6. Gluten-free stuff. 
7. Makeup. All "western" brands are at least double the price. Eg. Maybelline mascara: $30 and up!!! Now imagine what L'ancome costs!! 
8. My bath robe. My plus-sized bath robe that fits me perfectly!!! They don't use bath towels to dry off, they have little hand-towels and just use that!!!! Ian and Phoenix bought me a towel for Mother's Day and I'm embarrassed to tell you how much it was... ($30)

(¥100 = $20)

Of course I have a whole bunch of cardmaking supplies I need to bring (my Christmas stamps were mistakenly put in storage!!) and some other odds and ends... Shipping is just way too much and it takes too long, so these trips home are kind of a shopping expedition too!! 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Jewelry Galore!

Before coming to Shanghai one thing I was really excited about was jewelry! It seemed every necklace I picked out at home said Made In China so I was like, WAHOO!!  Bring on the deals!!! I didn't find the deals.. Fake markets had tones of the stuff but it was all over-priced and you had to haggle for everything.  No thanks. 

Enter Taobao. 
Actually enter Taobao iPhone app... 

If you search something it remembers. (Enter spooky music)
So I search pens, next thing I know 50 different listings for pens pop up. 
Necklace? .... Jackpot! 

Seriously amazing deals... Check it out: 

As my brother says, "GUESS HOW MUCH?!?!" 

None of these pieces cost more than $4, and one necklace even cost $0.80!! lol
See anything you like? 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Long Time No See!

I will admit to feeling guilty for not posting an update for many months but the truth is our lives haven't been that exciting! Everything that used to surprise us no longer does, and our day-to-day lives are much like they were at home: wake up, school, after-school activities, dinner, bed, and repeat! 
One thing that has livened up my life is the addition of musical theatre to my schedule and being able to sing and play music with kids again is so much fun. Chinese kids bring special challenges to a theatre production, but they are all giving their best and it's going to be a great show.. 

So we haven't been to Shanghai for a while (saving up for summer) but we have a week off so Phoenix and I headed for the fake market today to pick up some goodies... Here's what we found:

Phoenix needed a pair or two of shorts and we found these at a sports store. They're golf shorts so they have a lot of stretch which will hopefully survive all of the sports he's in.. 

Which brings me to the purchase that accompanied the shorts. Do you know what this is? We are in China so I shouldn't be surprised, but Phoenix has turned into a badminton addict.. I got him a good racket from Taobao (search Taobao on Google and look around.. You can buy everything on there from milk to shoes to makeup to scooters... Cheap!) so this is a racket bag.. It's holding three rackets, birdies, and extra grips. 
So the shorts, bag and thing of birdies for $60. 

Then I visited my makeup lady. I got this set of MAC brushes and case because some of my brushes are getting old and damaged. 
There are a couple of brushes in this set that I already own, so some people at home are going to get a present *wink wink*

Too Faced - eyeshadow primer
Dior Addict lipstick
Dior Eyeshadow palette
Bobbi Brown Gel Eyeliners in brown and black
MAC lip pencil 

All makeup stuff for $80

And finally, Phoenix and I both got new pairs of Rayban prescription glasses.. 
$40 each!