Wednesday, October 31, 2007

WARNING - THIS IS NOT A VIDEO OF OUR CHILDREN.

If you appreciate pitching, you might appreciate this. No guarantees though.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Rachel video

If you want to hear from the newest Bowman, investigate this.

video

Hey, can someone comment whether or not this video worked? The gov't here has turned off the direct access to the blog and I can't determine if this new "upload video" option is working. Thanks.

Shanghai lights

Greetings from the eastern hemisphere.

These pictures were taken during the weeklong National holiday October 1 through October 5. I spent the day with a few guys from work. We did it all. We started with basketball in the morning. Since our family has a driver, I had never ridden the subway or a city bus before. Those were cool experiences. I have since hit the subway a few times. The bus was definitely a "one time deal". Nothing special there unless you like being squished (see picture below). We did a lot of walking in downtown including a night time stroll down Nanjing Road. I have never seen so many people packed into a single road before. The pictures can't quite capture the humanity. Oh, and of course there was some Kareoke but fortunately for you, there was no video taken this time.





Saturday, October 27, 2007

Hello from the family...












Beijing Quack Quack

In addition to a famous wall, the 2nd famous item in Beijing is their roast duck, called Quanjude duck. Zhao Jianqing, Zou Yan and myself headed to a famous restaurant that has been serving the specially prepared duck for 150 years. It was located on Beijing's famous shopping street, Wangfujing Lu. Check this out for info.

My 2 colleagues grossly underestimated my ability to pack away roast duck and started with a half-duck order. A chef wheeled out the specimen and began carving away, with a very large knife. I think this guy moonlights as a samurai. The duck is not intended to be eaten alone but intends to be incorporated into a famous "package". It involves a small tortilla like round packed with the duck, lettuce, sweet sauce and any combination of cucumber/garlic/salt/hot peppers. It was not easy to eat with chopsticks. The patrons split 50/50 between using chopsticks and the hands. I sided with the latter most of the time.

After we finished the first half, my friends were ready to pack it up for the night. I explained that I had more packing left to do. So, we ordered another half and I nearly made it through that one as well. (They couldn't resist tacking on a few more bites as well). And the next morning, Zhao Jianqing decided that we probably would be ready for another round of Quanjude roast duck in a year.





Saturday, October 20, 2007

Not even my '92 Civic could go this fast.

There is a magnetic levitation train that runs from our "neighborhood" to the airport. It's called the MagLev. It's a sight to behold when you happen to be near it's elevated track when it zooms through.

Check out this link for some official details.

And riding it to the airport has been on our list of things to do here in Shanghai since we arrived. I got to check it off the list when I left for Beijing.

The thing tops out at 267 MPH and they have an speedometer in the cabin that enables you to gauge the speed. It was impressive. And the ride was so smooth, there were people up and walking through the cabin at max speed. Kachow.

Here's a picture and some pictures of more important stuff. A few notes: Elijah got into some purple gloss without Mommy knowing, we are not liable if your child hurts himself while launching off of furniture after checking out the Bowman Blog, and the kids do not all nap in the crib.


















































Friday, October 19, 2007

A shout out from Aimee


Hello! Wow! It has been a REALLY long time since I have posted anything! I have forgotten how!


Things are going very well--the kids and I are quite busy each week. We have been having multiple playdates, girlschool, adventures out, grocery shopping,... the weeks are flying by!


Anna loves school--both at home and her girlschool. We are beginning to put sounds together to form some words which she is very excited about. It is so fun to see her excitement to learn. It is wonderful to see her having so much fun with friends too. She loves to have people over to our house and to get out when she knows that one of her friends is going to be there. She seems to be adjusting to life here much better having girls that she enjoys spending time with. I know how that goes! It makes a big difference to have friends!


Elijah is getting so big! He loves to talk! Sometimes it is hard to not laugh out of pure love because he will just string one sentence onto another and they have nothing to do with each other. He just wants to have his share of a 5 minute monologue (of course using hand gestures and great facial expressions the whole time). He still loves his race cars--they go with him everywhere, and to "fight" anyone who will fight him, but of course if available, Daddy is #1 fighter. ("Fight" = tackle, tickle, chase, jump on top of...)


Rachel is also getting so big. Sometimes it hits me more than others. I will look at her and do a double take because it seems she has doubled overnight. She is a wonderful baby. She sleeps 14 hours on a good night (and even then sometimes I have to wake her). She is normally very happy. She loves her sister and brother and they adore her. Just this week we have been putting her in the exersaucer which is fun. This puts her at a different angle to watch Anna and Elijah play and also for them to play with her. I still am very nervous having her on the ground to play because I am afraid Elijah will smother her with kisses or decide he is going to "fight" her and jump on her, :) so another option to have her off of the ground is good.


I am doing really well. It is nice to have our weeks so full (for the most part). I am so thankful for the people that God has put in our paths for our time here. He has again and again shown how faithful and merciful he is. Sometimes it is hard to always be on the go, to have to nurse and change poopy diapers in the car (while driving, of course, because even if I could communicate with our driver, where would he pull off to?) but I keep having to remind myself that we will not be here forever so we need to take advantage of it while we can. One week, when I was sitting on a small stool in the corner of a little shop nursing Rachel, I really wondered if I was crazy. It was one of those moments when it seemed as if I was an outsider looking at my world, realizing how out of the ordinary it is.


I am loving doing homeschooling. It is hard to get to all that I want to do with building into relationships, experiencing China, and all of the normal life stuff that needs to happen, so I have to keep reminding myself that is one of the benefits of homeschooling. What we don't get to now, we can work on this summer or catch up next year.


Girlschool is a real blessing. Like I said, Anna loves it, and Elijah loves the playtime that he has while Anna is in school. A couple of the moms and I have decided to use that time to pray and study together. We talked about forming a Moms In Touch group but decided with no childcare, it would be too difficult to dedicate that whole time to praying so we are going to read The Power of a Praying Parent during the week and then talk about it and pray together. I am really looking forward to it.





Let's see... the pictures... the first 2 are of one Sat. outing that we had to a part of the city the kids and I had not explored. We walked all over and went to a bookstore, a toystore, an insect market (amazing!) a park, I don't even remember what else! It was a full but fun day.





















The next ones are of the kids and I with some of our good friends. They live in Puxi (east of the Pu river) in an area where we had never been (I think that will always be the case--in such a big city--there is always going to be somewhere where we have never been) anyway... they have a really fun park near them that they took us to. I was thinking US park--I should have learned by now, that is not the case. I guess parks are a place where the retired congregate to dance, play card games, and play music so we enjoyed listening to this man play his Chinese instrument for a while. The park had wild animals (bears, lions, monkeys), farm animals (goats, horses, deer?) chained in cages with nothing but cement. It was very sad, but the kids enjoyed watching and feeding them when available. There also were rides for the kids to ride on. Anna and her 2 friends chose to ride a roller coaster and Elijah and his friend rode on the carousel. We had a really fun time exploring a more traditional Chinese park with our friends. The amazing thing is that there were many things available that we didn't do! This park had it all, and then some!





























































There are many more pictures of the kids that I want to post but I can't find them! I will try to have Ryan help me soon so those can get on as well.

Aimee

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Great Wall and T Square

I got great news last Friday. I needed to attend a meeting in Beijing on Monday morning. That meant a visit to Tiananmen Square Monday night and the Great Wall on Tuesday. It was everything it's cracked up to be. I was astonished at the magnitude of the wall, and I only saw a small bit of it at a location called Mu Tian Yu. I'll unravel more of the story of my trip soon. In the meantime, here are some pictures.




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