Friday, December 19, 2008
On Sunday we will be going to the local orphanage and bringing them some gifts that we know they are in need of. Kerrie and I found this Santa outfit for 20 RMB ($2.95) and had to get it. We thought it might be difficult to convince Brad to be Santa but he jumped right into the costume. He said it is really comfortable :-) So on Sunday Brad will be Santa to the children in the orphanage.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Brad and I woke up and hiked to a peak to watch the sunrise (don't be too impressed we went back to bed after we saw the sun come up)! We were very lucky the hotel had down coats for us to wear. We wore those coats and two others and were still a little chilly. Yellow Mountain is the place many of the traditional Chinese painters choose to paint.
Hiking this mountain was a little different than what we are used to. The entire hike is stairs...straight up, straight down. You can see the mountainside we climbed down and then right back up on the other side. Needless to say our knees have not quite recovered yet.
This is our first day on Yellow Mountain. We met this couple on our bus ride to the mountain and spent the day hiking up the mountain with them. I think this picture was taken right after our "encounter" with some monkeys. Part of traveling in China is meeting people. We met this Chinese couple the first day and two gentlemen traveling from the Netherlands the next day. I don't know how we didn't end up with some pictures of them? It was a great time, there weren't as many people climbing the mountain because it was so cold. You can see the ice and snow. We were excited, especially since it has still been in the 60's here! The bottom picture is the hotel we stayed in at the city. It was a Ming dynasty replica and very clean and warm, with some awesome woodwork.
We were able to tour a factory that makes ink for traditional Chinese paintings in Huangshan City. It was great to see how they work with the ink in a solid mass. We both always thought that it was always in a liquid form. These little pieces are molding and then painted in with some gold paint. When you use it you press it into some water causing it to make ink.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Thanksgiving in China, only one way to celebrate this true American holiday and that is with people. Just as the Indians and Pilgrims got together for a bid feast, we added more of an international mix with all the fixins’. We had Chinese and American people of course and Korean, French, and British people as well. Given this diversity and our delightful chief’s we had an awesome feast. No ovens in this part of China, so we used our small gas kiln as one. Stuffing, pumpkin pie, green bean casserole, duck with turnips, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, and roles were all baked. Vegetable soup, spiced wine, and fried chicken were also cooked to celebrate this holiday. About thirty friends and students came together and ate a fantastic feast. We were so grateful to have such awesome and generous cooks make this holiday feel like home. A huge thanks to them and their delicious food.