Up Close and Personal Part 1: Housing and Toilets

Since we’ve had some downtime lately, I thought I’d do a little “Living in China” mini-series.  We’ve shared a lot about our travels, but not too much about the day-to-day of teaching in China.  I’ll cover topics people have asked me about in the past and anything new that comes up, so let me know if you have any burning questions!  First up, where we live and what scared me the most about moving to China: ~~toilets~~.

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Christmas in China

Merry Christmas from China!  We’ve been missing our family and friends this holiday season, but we managed to make it a little special anyways.  Other Western holidays haven’t really caught on in China, so we were pleasantly surprised to find that the Christmas cheer has spread here.  Read on to find out what Christmas is like in a small, authentic Chinese town!

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Market madness, Moped meltdown, Major decisions

Yes, it killed me a little not to be able to finish the alliteration! 😂 Anyways, the last couple weeks have been pretty relaxed here.  No extra days off means spending the weekdays teaching and going into ultimate sloth mode on the weekends.  No complaints about that!  This past Saturday we did venture out to the market, which occupies the town’s main streets every 5 days.  We’ve gone to it before but never for very long, so this time we dedicated all morning to checking out every street it spills onto and trying lots of new food.  Hopefully these photos give a little glimpse into the colorful and fast-paced madness of our local street market.  All this time at home also gave us a chance to reflect on what we want to do when our contract ends in January, so be sure to get all the way to the bottom to find out what we decided!

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Everything is Bigger in Beijing

Tomorrow is (American) Thanksgiving, and as I prepped roast chicken and green bean casserole for a feast we’ll be sharing with the other foreign teachers I reflected on our many blessings.  Tommy and I are so grateful for this chance to explore the world a little bit more, and for all of our friends and family who have showed us continual love and support even while we’re halfway across the globe.  We’re thankful for the new friends we have met here, and for the new opportunities waiting for us after China (even though we don’t know what they are yet!).  And we’re so happy that we’re growing in grace and experiencing all of these things together.  So in the spirit of the holiday, here is one little piece of the year that we are thankful for, our trip to the big and beautiful Beijing!

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Visiting Pandora: Avatar Mountains at Zhangjiajie National Park

Have you seen Avatar?  If you haven’t, add it to your to-watch list and prepare to be inspired.  If you have, get excited… because last week we got to see Pandora IN REAL LIFE.  That’s right, Pandora is based on an actual place in China!  Zhangjiajie National Forest Park inspired James Cameron to create the movie’s amazing world, and last week we had the chance to experience it for ourselves.  This huge park was one of the most breathtakingly beautiful places I have ever seen.  Keep reading for photo overload and a few details about our trip to this magical place! 👇

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