Thursday, April 17, 2014

preschool conversations: what does a bunny say?

Students: "Ribbit! Ribbit!"

Me: "Boys and girls, that's what a frog sounds like! What sound does a bunny make?"

Students: "Hop, hop, hop!"

We made these bunny masks today in class. Man, four-year-olds are cute. I wish I could upload a photo of them, but you know, privacy. You'll just have to believe me when I say they were adorable.

(Photo via Pinterest)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

resources for twenty-somethings.

Did you notice I added a new page to the blog? At the very top! Resources for Twenty-Somethings! 

I'm 24 years old and have said more than once that the theme of my life is I don't know.

I don't know what I want to do with my life. Don't know if I should be spending the majority of my salary paying off my student loan or traveling. Don't know if I should get married or date around. Heck, some days I don't even know what to wear or what to eat!

And I'm guessing I'm not the only one.

Sometimes I find things that make me feel better about the not knowing, things that make me feel less lost and more okay. When I do, I'll post them here

The most recent article I found was "The Friendship Exodus Of Your 20s." Here's an excerpt: 

As you slide into your mid-twenties, you’ll have found that core group who survived the goodbyes, or maybe were the hellos who made the rest more bearable. The ones who you meet for a (slightly less cheap) brunch, go to movies with, play at being grownups, and throw dinner parties for. As you settle in to your lives, you begin to seriously couple-up, and maybe new faces come and go, but some slide in seamlessly, and become so intricately a part of the group that you can’t fathom that they weren’t there from the beginning. You share new jobs, hated bosses, and being laid off. You lament over student debt that is going nowhere but up, the terror of buying a new car, and oh dear god how do I file my taxes? You grow into adulthood, careers, higher education, and relationships with one another.

...Slowly as you slip from your twenties, there are no more clear delineations of goodbyes. People and priorities spread apart—moving away, following different paths, and new dreams. It’s neither leaving each other behind nor choosing something better, but the natural exodus of friendship in your twenties. It’s a time of change and goodbyes, of new beginnings somewhere else, and making it on your own. A period of coming and going, of clinging to what you know while simultaneously flinging yourself into the unknown.

This one felt particularly comforting and timely because I had just been talking with a friend about how relationships, particularly friendships, change as we get older and our lives change.

Anyway, if you're in your twenties and/or relate to the I don't know feelings, feel free to check out Resources for Twenty-Somethings often. I'll update it whenever I find something new!

(Photo: Literally, Darling)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

good news!

Guys! I forgot to tell you the good news...

Tony got his visa for Canada!

And it gets better than that! His visa is valid until 2023! Nine years! Woohoo!

We've booked his ticket already; he'll be visiting from July 18th to August 9th. Three whole weeks! Can you tell I'm excited??

Because of time and money, we're planning on staying in New Brunswick, splitting our time between family and friends, with hopefully a quick trip to PEI.

Any suggestions for things we can see and do? I'm worried he'll be bored because I'm not so good at being a tourist in my own home, so please help!

Honestly though, I think he'll be super excited just about the blue skies, open fields, and cultural differences :)


Now, let me tell you, applying for a Canadian visa is stressful. Blah. And a test on a relationship—ha! So I plan on writing a post soon-ish sharing what we did/what we learned.

Monday, April 14, 2014

an afternoon at yuyuantan park.

On Saturday, Tony, Melissa, Alanna, and I packed a couple bags with blankets, snacks, and a bottle of wine and headed out for an adventure. 

First, we went to Moka Bros, my new favourite place to get brunch, where we laughed about tiny macchiatos and ate delicious food. 

If I'm being honest, none of us thought the park was very beautiful. Most of the grass was brown or turning brown, it was kinda dirty, and very crowded and noisy—the outside of the park where I ended up last year was actually nicer—but we made the best of it by spreading out our blankets, playing crazy eights, singing along to the music, and taking cat naps.

(A highlight for me was when Alanna and I went to find the bathroom—a squatter, of course—and one of the stalls was playing Randy Travis' "Forever and Ever, Amen." That's my Nan and Dan's song and I made Alanna stop for a minute while I swayed and sang along.) 

Saturday was a great day and we all agreed it's nice to get out and do something, even when the air quality or weather aren't ideal. Tony and I are already planning next weekend's adventure—the Summer Palace. 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

welcome to china / 2.

Where anyone can buy beer from a vending machine for approximately $1 CAD. 

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

today was the best day because food.

And also drinks. And also shopping.

But mostly food and drinks.

I started my morning with two mugs of Tim Hortons coffee brewed right in my kitchen with my new coffee maker. Why didn't I buy one sooner?! I made it a little strong, but whatever, it was Tim Hortons coffee in Beijing so, winning.

At lunch time, Tony and I threw the ingredients for Summer's Strawberry Soy Chicken into the slow cooker and I was so excited about it but also nervous because it was only my second time using the slow cooker and was there enough liquid? Is that too much onion? Are we going to burn our apartment building down?

I made Tony go home around 3 to check it and when he reported back, he said, "It smelled soooooooooo good." It did smell good. And it tasted even better. I couldn't stop talking about it while I was eating it.

And then there was the white wine I drank while eating. The wine that cost $8 CAD that I'm drinking right this minute from a coffee mug with ice cubes because I'm classy. But seriously, I don't even like white wine and I love this.

P.S. The shopping. I spent over $300 CAD at Gap but I saved almost $200 because of a special promotion and I bought 5 dresses, 5 t-shirts, and 2 tank tops. And considering I cried the last time I went shopping, this is cause for a big celebration tonight.

P.P.S. That second photo is Summer's because her food prep looks much prettier than mine. Now go try her recipe.
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