Friday, November 7, 2008

A Day in the Park

We finally felt settled enough to get out of our neighborhood and do a bit of sightseeing with the kids. We took a taxi to Zhongshang Park, which is about 30 minutes from our home. One of the best parts of living overseas for me is to see new and interesting neighborhoods and this is definitely a neighborhood I would like to visit again. We had the kids with us, though, so we headed straight into the park and started looking around. We first went into a climbing/playing area which was indoors. The kids did not want to go to the climbing area, but they were happy to play a few of the games. After this, we wandered around outside and watched all of the people enjoying the day. There were groups dancing to music, flying kites, riding on the lake in boats, and playing games. The kids and Michael went on the carousel and Molly spent quite a bit of time in a bouncy castle. There were not a lot of expats in the park and it was fun to hang out and watch people on a typical Sunday in China.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Girls' Day Out

At the end of October we had a much needed girls' day out. Jenn, my upstairs friend, and I headed out with our daughters -- Molly and Jaya. We took the WWG shuttle into a neighborhood nearby and had coffee and breakfast. Then we climbed into a taxi and Jenn told the driver where to go -- it is nice to know someone who has been here a while and speaks Chinese. We headed downtown to H&M to try to find some sweaters and fall clothes for Molly and me. The little girls even stayed calm enough for Jenn and I to try on some clothes. I actually left with a few purchases for me and even more purchases for Molly. Then, the four of us headed to lunch nearby and ate and chatted. Finally, when the younger girls seemed like they had had enough, we headed home to show off our purchases.

Kris and Molly

Jenn and Jaya

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween in Shanghai

We had a great first Halloween in Shanghai. Molly's school was closed due to Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease so her party was postponed. Luckily, she was able to come to SAS with me that day and watch the parade and attend much of Benjamin's party. For costumes, we headed to the Children's Market which is downtown. This market is full of shops of toys and clothes for kids. We found a costume store and Benjamin was very excited to see two Ben 10 costumes hanging on the rack. He chose to be Heat Blast and was thrilled. Molly looked at all of the beautiful princess costumes and chose the slightly dirty dalmation costume.

School started with a parade around campus. We were supposed to go all over the school, but rain forced us to stay in the elementary building. The kindergarteners started the parade and headed through the halls. I stayed with Benjamin's class as we walked by all of the classes. Then, we headed to a party in Benjamin's room where they played games and made Halloween projects.

That afternoon we headed to Shanghai Racquet Club for some trick-or-treating. This was the first "real" trick-or-treating the kids have done. We went to over 10 apartments and then headed to a party at the Monk -- a bar/restaurant in the neighborhood. The place was filled with families and there was food and drink for everyone. It was a fun and exhausting day.

Pictures from the Day