happening weekend!!

Emwet_market
I tell you what, it’s fun to show someone new around to all the ‘stuff’ that is so cool, so unique and different and INTERESTING and fabulously CHINA! This place is really so cool! I love it. It’s been fun having em here… she has heard about everything, and it’s fun to show her in real life, and see her reaction to everything! Friday we had a kick back, mellow day- the kids were all out of school, so we had friends over for everyone, and while they played, tried to do a little organizing around here. It was going to be Kylee’s 21st B-day Sat, so we ‘heart attacked’ her room (the kids loved this project) and got ready for her big day. We even made heart shaped sugar cookiesHeart_attacker
…thanks again to the Capricolton_frosting_2
hand mixer…when eric got home from work, we decided to cruise to IKEA for a few things. I figured it was time for me to try my luck at driving there by myself! All 3 of the older kids couldn’t resist joining the adventure, and so off we went- eric stayed by the cell phone at home with the babies.  I was feeling particularly optimistic about the challenge. Eric gave me detailed instructions- and I have NEVER claimed to be good with directions, cause that requires paying attention! But I was really determined. I wish that I could have a video to somehow show that would validate me on this situation! But, it was dark…I did ‘know the way’… it’s just that I hadn’t really ever done it myself. Ok- so we got really close before I missed the turn, and what followed was 45 minutes of trying to figure out how to U turn, get back on the right road, going the right direction and then around again to get onto the road that got you on the other road that had the turn that I was originally supposed to make (see why it was so confusing!) LOL. Ok, so – we made it there… got the stuff needed (big mirror to decorate for my scrapbook room)…and we then made it back, and only missed one other turn  getting back- safe and sound.  But I think that Emily knows her way around this place perfect by now! She is much better at directional stuff than me.
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We were lucky enough to get an invite to the ‘dirt’ market for sat. morning bright and early. We snuck out by 7am and we were so excited. I have heard so much about it, but not really sure what to expect. To put it mildly, my expectations were far exceeded. Man, there was so much cool stuff! TONS of beads for jewelry making, all different kinds of Chinese type stuff- souvenierish and regular. Everything from teapots and pottery, to shadow puppets, to Chinese lanterns… and even instruments and furniture… fabulous. Seriously fabulous. I couldn’t even buy anything I was so overwhelmed, and figured, you know- I live here, I don’t have to make any rash decisions, cause I can go back whenever I want!  It was fun to see emily’s reactions to some of the stuff that I have grown accustomed to! Made me feel like an old-pro at this China stuffBeads_5

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Birthday_girlOnce we got back from the market, we celebrated Kylee’s b-day. (She LOVED the heart attack!). we opened presents, we gave her the cutest Chinese paper butterfly, painted kite that we got at the kite market here by our house. (lucky its within walking distance). I has also selfishly planned to treat Kylee to a foot massage for her birthday- I say selfishly because that meant that I would have to go too! And I for sure owed Emily a foot massage for all the stuff she brought over from the states that I was in dire need of!  So in celebration, we had Thai for lunch, went inspiration shopping and then got 90 minute foot massages. It was heavenly!

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Today was early church, we had District Conf. and it was amazingly inspiring. For many reasons. I needed that! I appreciated the messages delivered and the reminders about what is most important and why. It’s funny how a different perspective (like a move ½ way around the globe) changes your ability to see things, and understand them. I am so thankful for that change, and for the little (major) lessons that will change my life forever. and even more amazing, are the people that I have come in contact with that simply inspire me to be better, do better, and want to be more.  At church today, one of the speakers was a couple that had lived here in Beijing years ago with their family, when their 6 kids were young. They talked about how their time in Beijing effected their family dynamics, and the things that they learned and ways their lives were changed and influenced by living here.  It was so awesome to hear them vocalize some of the things I am feeling, and appreciating about this. –I can’t believe we have only been here 7 weeks.
After church, we went back to roam around the Summer Palace a little. We were too late to really get in, so we just wandered the grounds a little. –so fun.Em_in_the_rooftops
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