Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sleepless in Qingdao

So it's 2am and I have to get up at 6 to be on time for our flight tomorrow. Why am I not sleeping?!?!!

I think I'm anxious about our flight tomorrow, excited for our next adventure and sad that today was our last day in China.

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Saturday, July 23, 2011


These past three weeks we have worked with these people. Thanks so much for opening up and bring us into your family. We will remember you always. Keep on following Him, listening to His voice and doing His work. We will see you again one day.

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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Local Lunch

We ate with our friends in a local and very small town. We arrived at the restuarnt which appeared to be someone's home. Our friend asked us to order but we politly refused saying we would like anything he ordered.

As he finished up ordering the workers ran around gathering everything needed to make our food. One ran out back and returned with our chicken. They killed it, plucked it chopped it up and cooked it. They also pulled out an eel from a bucket, killed it, chopped it up and cooked it (see picture below). Talk about fresh food!

I'm sure this would violate some health code.

The food was pretty good and we tried several new dishes. One was a local speciality called sweet and sour cucumber. I was a little hesitant to try it because it looked like a bowl of fat. Once I got over the look the taste was good, a little sweet. One of my favorite dish was sweet potato leaves

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Pass The Baby

No matter where you are in the world babies are usually "ooo" and "ahhh" -ed at. They are just so cute. I don't know what it is about them, being so small, helpless, innocent, don't have a care in the world. I don't know but they are just adorable.

Well in China the fascination in children, and babies is no different. For us, being white, I feel like the fascination is higher. Then you throw us in a very rural area where they have never seen white people before and the curiosity is just a bit overwhelming.

When we had our first child 5 years ago this idea came to us as a shock. The first time we went out in public we were swarmed with people to get a peek at the 3 month old white baby.

Here both my boys get lots of looks and people wanting to touch then, hold them or play with them. A lot of people think my middle child is fun, but being a toddler he is not very compliant and doesn't like all the touching and really doesn't like to be held. So I usually hand over my baby since he loves the attention no matter who it is from.

Yesterday the family we ate lunch with played "pass the baby" around the table.

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Last Days

Today was a very fun day. It was very full and long and it's getting late so I will write more details later.

For the past three weeks we have been in a very rural part of China. It has been exciting and adventurous being here and experiencing life here and I am so thankful for the opertunity. I think it has been the perfect way to spend our last days in China.

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Doctor Office Skit

Our kids performing during the closing performance, they did an excellent job!! I was so proud of them!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ready For The Beach

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Monday, July 18, 2011

A Scary Moment

Our family went to the beach today. It was overcasted making it nice and cool, perfect weather for the beach. The ocean water here is a nice warm temperature making it a lot of fun to play in.

My husband took my daughter out so they could swim while I sat with my two sons on the shore were the waves could come and touch out feet. After awhile my husband & I traided.

LanLan and I made our way out past were the waves were breaking so the waves wouldn't go over our head. Shortly after we got there I felt the undertow pulling us away from the shore. LanLan was in an innertube so I wasn't so worried about her going under but I held onto her so as not to lose her. I started to swim as hard as I could but the pull was so strong we weren't going anywhere. It was then that I noticed two 10 year old boys also struggling. I watched as one of them went under the water and his friend trying to save him. They were crying for help. I was making my way over there but I was really struggling. I was praying that I would make it to them before they drowned. I reached out and with one arm picked up both boys, still holding tight to LanLan with the other. As soon as I got the boys one of them kept saying in English "Thank You! Thank You!". I swam all three kids and myself to where I knew LanLan could stand and asked the boys if they could stand up. Holdin on to me as tight as they could they replayed in Chinese that they were too scared and tired. We made it all the way back to shore and I put all three kids down an said not to worry and to be careful.

It wasn't till I was relaying the story to my husband that I felt how scary that situation was. Those boys woud have drowned if I wasn't out there to save them! PTL I had the strength to carry them all to safety!

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Family Trip to BeiHai

After a wonderful and busy week at LSV doing family camp we decided as a family to spend a few days in BeiHai city. We figured we could take this time to explore BeiHai, enjoy the beach, maybe go to Underwater World and swim in the hotel's pool. It is also nice to get a break from camp food and our usual breakfast of congee and mantou (corn rolls). (see blog post "Cafeteria Food" for a picture).

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Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Relaxing Saturday

Saturday was a nice break from a very busy week of camp. We spent the day cleaning up the apartment. The lids helped by sweeping the entire apartment (they got an "A" for effort but mommy had to go back and actually sweep up all the dirt). Mommy and daddy worked on dishes and putting stuff away along with runny back and forth putting laundry in the machine and hanging it up to dry. Since it was raining all day we had hang up the clothes inside. There are clothes hanging just about everywhere, from the bathroom, to the dinning room to all the bedrooms.

The rest of the day was filled up with naps, books, watching the kids run around and just plain old relaxing. Hurray for restful days!

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Closing Ceremony in pictures

Friday afternoon was our closing ceremony for the family camp. It was excellent!! We started with the kids doing a demonstration of what we did in English class. Here they are displaying zoophonics.

Our family performed first with our skit "The Doctor's Office". It was great, people understood it and laughed!

The Chew family went next and sang "I'm A Nut"

and also performed a famous Chinese tongue twister.

The Hsu family sang "Do a Deer"

The Kang Family performed a percussion song.

The Wang family went all out and preformed "The Little Red Hen", the kids did an excellent job.

As you can see the ceremony had a wide veriaty of things which was great. We ended with "Lean On Me" and gave out certificates.

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Final Day of Family Camp

The last day of camp was full of excitment. The morning started with english class and then we broke into family groups to practice our preformances and then did a quick run through of the entire closing ceremony.

After a quick lunch and nap time the kids were back with their parents at 2. My husband was a little nervous because he was the MC and had to do everything in Chinese but he did an excellent job.

Actually the entire ceremony was great, everything went very smoothly and all the families' performance were excellent. It was a great way to end the week.

It was an exhuasting week but a lot of fun. It was a struggle balancing between being a mom and a camp teacher. Everyday was a little better (except for my son screaming whenever we had to teach). We had a great time spending time with the local kids, playing games and getting to know them. It was also awesome to watch our LSV helper grow in confidence. She really worked at coming out of her comfort zone. I enjoyed watching her interact with the kids and treat them like her own little brothers & sisters.

My husband & I had a great time working with the kids here and will always have fond memories of this camp.

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Need a relocation service? Need help moving your family? Or your eggs?

You might want to call on these fast workers!

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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sick Day

This morning I woke up feeling terrible, my joints hurt, nose stuffy and just plain old sick.

Because of that I missed a lot of camp, I went and led the song time but it didn't go very well. Not only was I not feeling well but my son was screaming the whole time.

In the afternoon we had planned to go to the beach. It has been raining everyday this week which is nice because it has kept the weather cooler but it doesn't make for a good beach day. We decided to go ahead and just hope that by the time we got there it wouldn't rain.

Since I wasn't feel too well I stayed back with both the boys and we all took afternoon naps. My husband said that it was perfect weather for the beach, it didn't rain but it was cloudy keeping it cool.

I still have a runny/stuffy nose but am feeling much better this evening.

Tomorrow is the last day of camp.

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Cafeteria Food

For each meal we eat together in the cafeteria. The food isn't bad but it isn't great either. I think it lacks flavor but another thing is everyday is the same thing! Ok, well maybe not exactly but pretty close. Breakfast is the same every morning, lunch is rice with two types of veggies dishes with one having a little bit of meat in it and then dinner is lunch leftovers with maybe one dish added. We will also have some kind of fruit for dessert.

Thus is our breakfast everyday congee (rice poridge) & corn mantou (soft roll). It's fine but I'm really getting tired of the same thing everyday!! (this day we had added bonus of hot pepper paste we could add if we wanted)

Since the campers have been here the cooks have been putting on thier best and I'm so happy!

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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Culture Exchange, Food & Games (pictures)

In our family unit, this is the entire Carman family. 5 campers, 2 helpers & 5 Carmans.

Mixing up the eggs

Chopping tomatoes, green peppers, spam, and green onions

Cooking the omelletes

In the afternoon the kids brought their favorite snacks to share. This is dragon fruit

Fresh mangosteen

You eat the white part in te middle that looks like garlic

This fruit is grown locally here in NanKang. The Chinese translation is yellow skin fruit. It tastes a bit like tree bark.

We asked the kids the day before to bring their favorite game to share with us. The girl in the middle is our helper who is an LSV child. She brought UNO and taught the kids. Everybody enjoyed it.

LanLan wanted to play red light/green light.

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Dinner in the Village

We have a teenage helper from the States in our group so she joined us for dinner. I love the furniture! Beautiful but not too comfortable. Also notice all the fruit they provided for us.

Dinner; pumpkin & clam soup, shrimp, chicken, cabbage, cucumber, pork, fish, corn, egg & clams, tofu and some rice.

Our two families

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