Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Chinese Lessons

I started my Chinese lessons yesterday and will be going every Tuesday and Thursday morning for an hour. Matt will be going two days a week as well. Here is the Chinese name my teacher gave me: Peng li sha. Have fun trying to pronounce it! I have a lot of studying to do, but I am excited to begin learning the language.

 Brynn strolling her baby doll, Elle, this morning (Elle is wrapped warmly in the blanket). The scary part is Brynn walks better in high heels than I do!!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

18 Months and a New Ride

Brynn turned 18 months old on Saturday. It so hard to believe she is already a year and a half old. Brynn is so much fun, full of energy and stubborn.  Every day she is learning new things. She loves to read, go for walks and strolls, she loves waving at Chinese people and saying "hey" with her southern accent (this has gotten her a free watch, crackers, bannana, etc.), she loves hugs and kisses and helping with household work (helping mommy cook, sweep, dust and pick up). This usually causes more work for me.

In other news....Brynn got a new ride. A little girl in our apartment complex has the same type of riding toy and every day Brynn looks at it and wants to ride it. So, Saturday morning we went down to the market and Brynn got her very own. Her favorite part is making it play music....it plays a wide variety of  songs from Happy Birthday to Christmas Carols. The only problem is she can steer it. This morning we had a few battles with mommy wanting to go one way and Brynn turning the wheel the other way!

(Brynn says thank you to Heath and LeAnn)

Saturday Combo...

Saturday's in Chengdu are quiet different than those in the States. Most Saturdays, Sarah and her mom would go shopping. I would eat lunch with my dad, typically at Swen. Sarah liked to be active, while I enjoyed the chance to relax on the couch and watch whatever sport was in season. In Chengdu, being lazy on the couch does not really exist, nor does your typical shopping trips. So Sarah and I are forced to finding new and exciting things to do on Saturdays. This Saturday, we might have found our calling in Chengdu... Happy Valley and Pizza Hut!

With our great friends the Whitlocks, we took Happy Valley Amusement Park by storm on Saturday. Happy Valley has two sections. One side is a theme park with roller coasters, thrill rides and a kids' section. The other section is a water park with slides, wave pool and a water playground. Brynn loved both sections, so we decided to buy the season pass, only $100 for our family.

Brynn rode her first carousel, floated in the wave pool and ran through the water playground. There are a few more rides that she will be able to enjoy in the future. Andy and I rode the park's giant coaster, basically the Batman Ride at Six Flags, but much faster. Sarah and I rode two of the water slides together. She was very brave and I hope to get her on the coasters soon.

Just like Disney World or Six Flags, Happy Valley offers  variety of shows. Yesterday, they were showing their version of Snow White. We heard it was very entertaining and hope to take Brynn next week. On the outside of the park is an IMax theater (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows in November), along with a plethora of American stores and restaurants.

In these restaurants is where Sarah, Brynn and I found our second joy of Saturday... Pizza Hut. With the Whitlocks, we knocked down three large pizzas with cheese-stuffed crust. We enjoyed a cheese lovers, pepperoni and ham-pineapple pizzas. It brought back great memories of pizza nights at the Perdues.

We plan to get our money's worth out of the season pass, as we have not seen all of the park. There are many more rides to thrill us, shows to watch and water slides to conquer. We hope to post some pictures of the park in the near future.

Perdues Out

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

First completed project!

Before I left the states my dear friend, Debbie, began teaching me to crochet. She has the patience of saint, because crafty I am not. I finally finished my first project. Please do not look closely as it is far from perfect. It also helps having an adorable model. Thanks Debbie!!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Our after school fun...

One day last week Brynn, our friend Aimee and I walked to school to meet Matt, Aimee's husband and children. We scootered to a park right by our school and had a blast rolling around on a lake in some huge, clear balls. I have a hilarious video of Matt, but I wasn't able to get it uploaded. Here are some pictures...

Matt before   

Matt in the ball while they are blowing it up

Matt being rolled into the water

He is getting the hang of it now

Taking a break. It is much harder work than it looks.
Sweet Emma and Brynn watching the fun!  


I am not sure why I don't have any pictures of Andy. He is 6 ft. 5 in., so needless to say he was hilarious to watch. It was hard work and Matt and I were exhausted by the end. We tried not to think about all the germs and sweaty people that were in it before us. Also, we weren't sure how there was enough oxygen in it because it was sealed shut with no holes. No worries..... we survived with no injuries. It was a great afternoon!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Weekend and Piece of Art

We had a great, relaxing weekend here in Chengdu. Friday night we ate dinner at our new friends and host family, the Spatas, house. We had grilled chicken, baked potato casserole and salad. It was very good and felt very American! Saturday morning I went on a school sponsored shopping trip. Matt and Brynn stayed at home and played. Sunday we went to fellowship and ate lunch at Peter's Tex Mex. In our spare time (when Brynn is napping),  Matt and I are watching the "Lost" series. We now know why all of our friends obsessed over the show. It is very good and I am even staying up past 9:00 pm to watch another episode. For those who know me well, know that I don't stay up past 9 for much :)

We have this decorative piece in our living room that has two cutouts with lighting for a piece of art. I was thinking of buying some sort of figurine, pottery, etc. to put in the spaces. Brynn gave me another idea.....

You may have noticed Brynn's new shoes in the bottom picture. Her feet must have hit a growth spurt because only one pair of her shoes still fit. I was able to buy her these cute pink shoes for $4 by using a lot of hand gestures. I also learned she wears a size 15 according to Chinese sizes.

I hope everyone has a great week! Love, Sarah

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Lulu and Papa Ray...

Happy Birthday to Papa Ray (August 14) and Lulu (August 10). I miss my grandparents very much and hope to see you on Skype tonight (your Saturday morning)!



Friday, August 13, 2010

While Daddy is at work....

I like to read.

Practice my gymnastics.

Take Bella for a walk.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Matt's First Day of School...

Here is Matt getting ready for his first day at school. Brynn woke up in time to see her daddy off and read a book. Matt took the scooter to school. Brynn and I know that daddy will do a great job teaching, but will miss him being around every day!

Faces of Brynn...

Brynn decided to pose for pictures. Getting her to look at the camera has become a chore! These pictures were taken at our apartment on Sunday before Fellowship.

Friday, August 6, 2010

10 Chinese Facts...

Here is a list of 10 things that Sarah, Brynn and I have learned in our first 2 weeks in China.

1. You do not leave a tip at a restaurant (Scott Anders would love this place)

2. Traffic lights are a suggestion/optional (Robert Pate would break triple digits on wrecks)

3.  When crossing the street, do not make eye contact with a driver. If a driver can see your eyes, he thinks it means you know to get out of his way. He will not stop or slow down.

4. Chinese food is better in China, than in the States (Jonathan Brewer will eat like a king in November)

5.  American adults are not celebrities in China. Their children, on the other hand, are Rock Stars.

6. Chinese mosquitoes put those Alabama skeeters to shame. Welts are a common sign on everyone's body.

7. When you walk down five flights of stairs and realize you forgot something at the bottom, you really have to think hard about how important the forgotten item is to you. Law in Chengdu: any building under seven stories does not have to have an elevator. Our building is six stories.

8. Their are two channels on Chinese TV for Americans to watch. Channel 9 is an English speaking channel, much like BBC with world news and various shows. Channel 5 is the Chinese version of ESPN. It shows sports all the time, from basketball to board games to table tennis. Even though it is in Chinese, I watch this station the most.

9. You can get everything you need to survive within a half mile of your apartment. Within walking distance of our apartment, you can eat a five-star dinner, get your ears cleaned out, buy a used bicycle or get a new cell phone. This makes living very convenient!

10. Chinese culture is based around the community. Whether it be parents or grandparents, children have someone playing with them at all times. Elders sit around and play Mah Jong in the street. Groups of friends go out to eat and play pool. In America, everything is much more private. In China, everyone loves to go out every night and spend time with each other. I am beginning to really love this new part of my life!!!

Happy Birthday Granna!

Dear Granna,

I hope you have a wonderful birthday. I love you very much.

Love, Brynn

PS: Mom says happy birthday too!!!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Western motif...

Some apartments in our company come furnished with a matching IKEA set of couch, love seat and chair. Who wants new, matching, stylish furniture? Not the Perdues!! We like our furniture to come straight from the set of Nickeldoen's 1990 Smash  Hit "Hey Dude". Our living room set comes courtesy of Mr. Ernst and the Bar None Ranch. That's right... cow print cushions!

Pandas or American Baby?

What is the most popular attraction at the Panda Breeding and Research Center?

Giant Pandas? Red Pandas? Panda Cubs? Maybe, the newborn Panda? WRONG!!!!

Top Attraction = BRYNN PERDUE

Perdue's Harley Davidson...