Handling the holidays…Christmas, China-Style

China thoughts from one of my friends. She is a much better writer than me…

Tai Tai in Shanghai

It’s been a long time since I’ve written. Don’t judge. Life has been hectic. I’ve got one kid in each school division this year: elementary, middle and high school. To say that life is crazy is an understatement. Add to that the fact that we live in CHINA and hopefully you’ll find it in your hearts to forgive me.

The holiday season, Christmas season, is upon us. As expats in China, our holidays are readily accepted here. Thanksgiving, Easter, Halloween, Christmas. The Chinese have way more holidays – So. Many. Holidays. They’ve got Chinese New Year (actually a week), Tomb Sweeping day, October holiday (another week), Dragon Boat Festival, Ghost Festival, Moon Festival… the list goes on and on. Add them all together and there always seems to be something to celebrate in China!

There are also some “shopping” holidays. I compare them to our “Hallmark” holidays in the US…

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Day 72: Soccer for Callaghan

CALLAGHAN SOCCER69 2013-10-1201-24-25 CALLAGHAN SOCCER63 2013-10-1201-15-29 CALLAGHAN SOCCER62 2013-10-1201-15-29 CALLAGHAN SOCCER61 2013-10-1201-15-04 CALLAGHAN SOCCER58 2013-10-1201-11-26 CALLAGHAN SOCCER56 2013-10-1201-09-33 CALLAGHAN SOCCER55 2013-10-1201-09-32 CALLAGHAN SOCCER54 2013-10-1201-09-31 CALLAGHAN SOCCER52 2013-10-1201-06-07 CALLAGHAN SOCCER51 2013-10-1201-06-07 CALLAGHAN SOCCER47 2013-10-1201-05-59 CALLAGHAN SOCCER46 2013-10-1201-05-29 CALLAGHAN SOCCER44 2013-10-1200-23-32 CALLAGHAN SOCCER43 2013-10-1200-18-20 CALLAGHAN SOCCER41 2013-10-1200-14-03 CALLAGHAN SOCCER40 2013-10-1200-13-37 CALLAGHAN SOCCER39 2013-10-1200-13-36 CALLAGHAN SOCCER38 2013-10-1200-12-22 CALLAGHAN SOCCER37 2013-10-1200-12-17 CALLAGHAN SOCCER27 2013-10-1200-08-58 CALLAGHAN SOCCER26 2013-10-1200-07-56 CALLAGHAN SOCCER25 2013-10-1200-07-55 CALLAGHAN SOCCER20 2013-10-1200-07-00 CALLAGHAN SOCCER19 2013-10-1200-06-59 CALLAGHAN SOCCER17 2013-10-1200-05-42 CALLAGHAN SOCCER11 2013-10-1200-05-23 CALLAGHAN SOCCER10 2013-10-1200-05-22 CALLAGHAN SOCCER5 2013-10-1200-03-46 CALLAGHAN SOCCER4 2013-10-1200-03-46 CALLAGHAN SOCCER2 2013-10-1200-03-27


Day 55: Photo of the day

Sadly my neighbor broke his leg and will be in a wheel chair for a while.  This is the second attempt at a ramp for him.  The first one was about a 45 degree angle and there was no way the 100 lb. wife was going to be able to get him up there.  Even this angle would be tough.  I felt sorry for my neighbor trying to explain that the ramp was too steep to the Chinese workers.  This is an impossible conversation.

Ramp for neighbor

Ramp for neighbor 


Day 55: Soccer Day

Today the 3rd graders at American schools across Shanghai met at one of the schools for soccer day.   Kennedy’s team was undefeated!  We have a great class.
Soccer day118 2013-09-2320-49-41 Soccer day127 2013-09-2321-14-10 Soccer day59 2013-09-2320-13-24 Soccer day4 2013-09-2319-43-23

Day 54: Beginning of 3 day trip to Nanbeihu

Callaghan left today for a 3 day trip to Nanbeihu for team building with her class.  They are doing all sorts of outdoor activities.   Callaghan is having a great time, but did not like having to eat real Chinese food for the first time since we got here.

Mooncakes30 2013-09-2307-51-12

Day 53: Callaghan’s first soccer tournament



Callaghan has become quite a good defender.  She sure does miss her Albion gals.  She can keep up with these boys.  Watch out – she will be tough when she gets back!


Mooncakes25 2013-09-2209-51-36

Day 52: Grace Orphanage

This place made little orphan Annie’s orphanage  look nice.  We took a trip to play with orphans and it was quite a site.  I won’t get into the details and didn’t take pictures of the worst stuff, but I like to think the girls are happy for what they have now.  Mooncakes1 2013-09-2108-54-14 Mooncakes3 2013-09-2108-57-04 Mooncakes6 2013-09-2108-57-57 Mooncakes7 2013-09-2109-02-52 Mooncakes12 2013-09-2109-04-26 Mooncakes15 2013-09-2109-22-32 Mooncakes20 2013-09-2109-34-47

Day 49: Check out this home made scaffolding

Chinese Ladder

Chinese Ladder

Day 39: Recap of Subway Scavenger Hunt Challenge

We did a subway scavenger hunt around China to see some of the sights – It was like the Amazing Race.  We didn’t even get to half of the places but saw some interesting things.   Subway Challenge77 2013-09-0623-09-33 Subway Challenge3 2013-09-0618-38-55 Subway Challenge4 2013-09-0618-56-02 Subway Challenge5 2013-09-0619-16-40 Subway Challenge6 2013-09-0619-16-52 Subway Challenge7 2013-09-0619-17-24 Subway Challenge8 2013-09-0619-17-43 Subway Challenge9 2013-09-0619-18-09 Subway Challenge10 2013-09-0619-18-30 Subway Challenge11 2013-09-0619-19-58 Subway Challenge13 2013-09-0619-23-59 Subway Challenge14 2013-09-0619-33-57 Subway Challenge16 2013-09-0619-36-03 Subway Challenge18 2013-09-0619-39-14 Subway Challenge19 2013-09-0619-40-46 Subway Challenge22 2013-09-0619-45-32 Subway Challenge23 2013-09-0619-51-10 Subway Challenge25 2013-09-0619-51-29 Subway Challenge27 2013-09-0620-00-17 Subway Challenge28 2013-09-0620-00-41 Subway Challenge29 2013-09-0620-01-51 Subway Challenge30 2013-09-0620-02-43 Subway Challenge74 2013-09-0623-06-49 Subway Challenge73 2013-09-0623-05-24 Subway Challenge72 2013-09-0623-03-39 Subway Challenge71 2013-09-0623-03-28 Subway Challenge69 2013-09-0622-35-22 Subway Challenge68 2013-09-0622-33-05 Subway Challenge67 2013-09-0622-27-27 Subway Challenge66 2013-09-0622-23-32 Subway Challenge65 2013-09-0622-23-27 Subway Challenge64 2013-09-0622-15-56 Subway Challenge63 2013-09-0622-14-46 Subway Challenge62 2013-09-0622-07-38 Subway Challenge61 2013-09-0622-06-42 Subway Challenge60 2013-09-0622-04-42 Subway Challenge59 2013-09-0621-57-04 Subway Challenge58 2013-09-0621-53-20 Subway Challenge57 2013-09-0621-52-48 Subway Challenge56 2013-09-0621-50-32 Subway Challenge55 2013-09-0621-43-23 Subway Challenge54 2013-09-0621-40-48 Subway Challenge53 2013-09-0621-34-20 Subway Challenge52 2013-09-0621-31-49 Subway Challenge51 2013-09-0621-28-31 Subway Challenge49 2013-09-0621-15-52 Subway Challenge48 2013-09-0620-54-15 Subway Challenge44 2013-09-0620-35-13 Subway Challenge43 2013-09-0620-35-11 Subway Challenge42 2013-09-0620-28-13 Subway Challenge40 2013-09-0620-16-53 Subway Challenge39 2013-09-0620-15-42 Subway Challenge37 2013-09-0620-12-55 Subway Challenge35 2013-09-0620-07-54 Subway Challenge34 2013-09-0620-05-36 Subway Challenge33 2013-09-0620-03-55 Subway Challenge31 2013-09-0620-02-59

Day 41: Pearl Market

Pearl market has lots of fun jewelry.  A must see if you come visit me here in China! Mooncakes2 2013-09-1908-13-58