It's certainly been a nice week after coming home from Guilin. We haven't had any obligations, so we have visited friends, cooked dinner at home, and hung out and had family time. Sophie has gone to school this week making it extra peaceful at home!
In the picture above we are all appropriately dressed - although we have heat now it is still somewhat chilly, so we all wear layers. No force of nature however can keep Sophie's clothes on. As soon as she walks in the door she peels everything off until she's running around in her underpants.
Sophie likes to help move around our empty water jugs - she likes to move around our full ones, too, which easily outweigh her!
On the way to Sophie's school, we now see huge crowds trying to buy train tickets home. This is the largest migration of humans (millions) anywhere on the planet, and it happens every year at the Chinese New Year. You can only buy a train ticket 10 days in advance, so people are clambering to get the seats. We've also heard there's quite a black market for train tickets.
Sue and Sophie love to stop at the local noodle shop on the way to school, for breakfast. It's a popular, fast and delicious breakfast for about 28 cents, US!
Sophie, at school with some of her classmates... They all keep their clothes on due to lack of heat so they look like little sumo wrestlers.
The building construction is still continuing but thankfully it is only on the 1sts floor, so the noise is reduced in our apartment. It's still quite a mess to trudge through the mud and construction material though. Our stair entrance is now framed in granite! It will look nice when it's done.
We went to the local market today to find some things for the US kids who are sending us letters. Sue loved looking at all of the decorations and had a difficult time choosing. "Should I get this character I don't know or that character I don't know?" I said, "We can't read them anyway, so get the cheapest!"
Finally, our last stop was the calligraphy store where you can buy pens, ink sticks, paper, and all manner of calligraphy items. The paper is hand made in different provinces and has varying properties of absorption, thickness, smoothness, fiber content, etc. We had seen it being made in Fu Yang so we appreciate the process! Sue bought an assortment of paper that she is excited to try.
Now decorations are going up in stores and on lampposts, which makes it seem so festive here! We are looking forward to lighting some fireworks with Grandma and Grandpa when we get back from Thailand!