Friday, August 29, 2014


Our air shipment arrived this past Monday, hooray!  We were not expecting it to arrive this early.  It is really nice to have more of our own things here, it is beginning to feel more like home.  We actually have dishes and cooking utensils, and pots and pans and coffee mugs. This may not sound exciting, but we were working with one pan, a couple of bowls/cups. Now we can start cooking at home.

This pile of boxes, became that pile of recycle
We had 17 items/boxes in our air shipment. Mostly kitchen essentials and clothing and baby stuff. It is nice to have more clothes. I was getting a little sick of wearing the same 6 outfits for the last month.
There was one casualty of the move, please let there be a moment of silence for my poor crockpot.  Thankfully it was only this item that was hurt nothing else was missing or damaged. Now I just need to figure out where all of this stuff is going to fit. 

 I know this is not the most exciting post, but it is what is happening over here. So I'll end with a pictures of Baby O, and let's be honest he is why you are all reading this blog anyway! :)
 (Baby O is working hard on crawling, he is so close.) 

Monday, August 25, 2014

The flight

Baby O and I arrived safely in China on Friday evening.  This flight didn't go as smoothly as our trip over in June, but it wasn't terrible.

The happy travelers just before we boarded the plane. (Sorry for the poor quality phone pictures.)

Thankfully there was no one sitting next to us, even though the guy at the gate desk told me that the plane was completely full. I am not sure why he needed to lie to me about the empty seat, I was just happy to have the row to ourselves.

I was able to put Baby O down while he slept which was nice. He slept for a while at the beginning of the flight. He did get easily distracted by all the sounds and lights that were happening on the plane. He was particularly interested in the man sitting across the aisle from us, who played Bejeweled for about eight hours straight. Baby O also wanted to watch this mans daughter who was moving around and playing with another little girl on the plane, and pushing the flight attendant call button many times. The flight attendants were not pleased about this and neither of the girls' fathers seemed to care.

Thankfully Baby O was sleeping when the meal came. I was able to enjoy a glass of wine and watch part of The Book Thief. What I saw of the movie was good. I didn't get to finish it because Baby O woke up. I'll just have to see if can find here. Overall it was a good flight, not much turbulence.

Here is one last photo of Baby O sleeping. I made a "fort" for him to sleep under to keep it a little bit darker for him.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

House Hunters International: Our top 3 picks

After the house hunting extravaganza we narrowed it down to three apartments that we liked. The size and location of these three fit our needs best. Here they are, in the order we saw them:

1. This is the very first apartment we visited. It is on the 19th floor with 3 bedrooms, 2 bathroms and an office. I believe this one is about 208 square meters (2200 square feet). 

The living room

Kitchen, with laundry room at the far end.

Guest bedroom

Master bedroom

View of construction across the street.

2. Our next favorite was the fifth place we looked at, this was also the smallest of all the apartments that we saw. It was on the 4th floor with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and an office. This one was approximately 140 sm (1500 sf).

Dining room with kitchen off to the left.

Living room


Master bedroom

The view

3. This is the very last apartment that we saw, it is also the largest (but only by a little bit) at 220 sm (2300 sf). There are 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. This one is also on the 4th floor. The current tenant was in the middle of packing up so the house was a little chaotic.

Living room

Dining room

Master bedroom


All of the apartments had there own pros and cons. In China everything is negotiable, even apartments. Before we made our final decision we asked the landlords for things to be added (like a dishwasher) or changed (like a very firm mattress) to see which unit was going to be the best deal. Ultimately we decided on apartment number........1! We are excited to move and get settled in our new apartment. I'll share better photos of our place once we are settled.

House Hunters International: The Rejects

While on our week long visit to Suzhou (this past June) we had an afternoon of apartment hunting. J's company set us up with a real estate agent that found a few apartments for us to view. First I'll show a few pics of the places we didn't pick.

Thhis is kitchen of the second place we saw. It didn't have an oven or a dishwasher which is common for most Chinese apartments. 

This is the living room/dining room of the third place we saw. This one had in-floor heating throughout the apartment.

This is the guest bedroom at the sixth place we saw. This bed is the firmest bed I have ever sat on, it was like I sat on the hardwood floor!

Living room of the seventh place we saw.  At this point in the house hunting extravaganza the apartments all started looking the same. It didn't help that we hadn't eaten lunch and it was hot and humid!

Dining room of the eighth place we saw.

The guest bedroom of the ninth place we saw. This apartment was dark and you needed mosquito netting because of the first floor location and the little canal that runs right by the apartment. 

There was one other apartment that we saw on this trip, but I didn't take any pictures. It was the fourth place we saw, from the moment the door opened it was bad. It smelled horrible, like cigarette smoke and mildew. Gross! It was also dark and needed a serious deep clean. 

It was an exhausting afternoon! Baby O did great being moved from carseat to carrier and back many times. We were all hungry, hot and tired by the end of the day. Thankfully we were able to see a few apartments that we liked. I'll share our top three in the next post.  

This is real life

Its official we are moving.  Later this week Baby O and I will be joining J in our new home, Suzhou, China!