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Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States

Aug 23, 2009

Bus facts and the Busy weekend

Clearwater Bay 1 from outypants on Vimeo.

I took a picture of the second beach as you can see it from the first but I am not sure it captured the contrast. It had easily 3x amount of people at it then where we were. This beach allowed the kids to wade out further in the water compared to repulse bay. I also liked how the showers were nearby to the beach area.

The video includes clips from Ma on Shan- we were invited to a birthday party from our English friends we met at Horizon Suites. We caught part of a dance exhibition at the mall . Some of the video is by the kids.

We had read in a book that Clear Water Bay first beach was a lot less crowded than the second.  So we headed out that way.

 I was unsure we would get off at the right stop as we were relying on being able to read the electronic destination sign. These signs don't always work. The destination shows up first in Chinese then in English.  If you aren't watching carefully, the English can flash when you are not looking. 
 We knew we could look for the Chinese Character for 1 in the sign if we missed it.  In spite of the crowd blocking part of it we caught the English pushed the button and made it.

One reason the first beach is less busy is due to the climb. Lots of stairs. 
 Nathan carried Elliot up most of the way on our way out. Jane who often takes the stairs while we take the escalators didn't complain to much about the long long way up.

The temp that day was 34 degrees c-- about 94 degrees F
end of July and August have had very few days below 85 degrees.
Strange for someone like me who has only known the mild summers of the Great Lakes.

Our day out at the beach ended with me suffering from what I believe was heat exhaustion. On the train home I suddenly felt like I was going to vomit and felt dizzy. When I got off the train I felt disorientated and thought for sure I was going to pass out. I would feel a little better start walking and it would hit me all over again. Three times this happened where I couldn't walk. Felt like I was going to be sick and my head was spinning. I felt so bad Nathan and the kids standing around me trying to get to me stand up. Finally we got on the shuttle bus heading for home. After about 10 seconds of sitting down on the bus I felt normal. I have never felt that bad in my whole life. I learned my lesson drink lots of water even if I don't feel that hot or thirsty.

Aug 12, 2009


The pictures below were the same day we went to the Ani-con. That day we also visited the Museum of Coastal defense and Kowloon park. So nice to visit Kowloon park on a day other than Sunday. It seemed virtually empty.

The kids have been entertaining as ever the past couple of weeks .
Elliot has informed us he wants to be a pizza maker and a lifeguard when he grows up. He said he is going to be doing these things in Hong Kong- Nathan asked him what if we lived in Michigan- he said he would get on a plane and deliver us pizza.

Jane noted that she gets more toys here in Hong Kong than she did in Michigan making it a reason to live here longer. She wants to be a mom and a singer. I have found it interesting that when ever she has been asked what she has wanted to be once it was a Doctor, then a dancer she has always added next to it a mom. I hope and pray that she is blessed with a loving husband and gets that desire. I am glad she is viewing motherhood so positively. Awhile back I asked her about wanting to be a mom and the reasons, one of those reasons was " because you get to eat chocolate and stay up late" too many times coming out of her room after bed time to find mom getting into her secret stash of goodies I guess.

Embarrassing moments recently: Elliot pulling my skirt down on the MTR. This was so humiliating if you are a FB follower you know it was my status update. Not too much to explain; he was being a little whiny tired of standing on the MTR- and was pulling on my hands, I was relieving him of his grasp on my hands and he grabs my skirt as a way to help himself up. It of course was right before we got off at our stop. Granted when you live in a place with millions of people it is likely I would be forgotten even in my own town, but still the white woman who had her skirt pulled down might be more easily remembered. I didn't dare look up to see who caught it. Except of course Nathan's big grin.

exciting news: The kids watch an Internet program called Jellytelly created by Veggie tales creator Phil Vischer. I can't talk this show up enough for its quality Christian entertainment for kids and adults. Ok so mainly for kids but it has the sophisticated Veggie Tale humor that goes beyond kids.
They have a segment where a puppet gives the news and reads letters with questions from kids that watch the show. His name is Buck Denver. We sent a letter about a month ago, telling him we moved from Mi to HK and asked if there were any other kids from other places beside the US that watch Jelly Telly.. How excited were we when this letter got featured on the show this week.

other big news is we have our first scheduled visitors coming in November. Shanda and Shane- Nathan's brother and sister are coming to visit for 2 whole weeks! How good it will be to see family.

Aug 10, 2009

Snacks and treats

Moving Feet from outypants on Vimeo.

If you read any tour book on Hong Kong they all say that you can't talk about Hong Kong without talking about the food. You don't have to live here for long to know what the mean. The city is international so you are able to try anything. Sharing our food experiences will occur from time to time.
I wanted to take a moment to talk about the snacks and treats that have frequented our shelves the past 5 months.
I have posted about Kinder Eggs before. Chocolate shell that easily separates and has a toy inside, the toy is inside another container and you usually have to assemble it. I recently have been awarding these for verse memorization. The chocolate quality is very good and I enjoy the hazelnut Kinder Bueno candy bars myself. Think of Nutella in candy bar form..

Another treat is Mamee noodles. Basically it is uncooked ramen noodles that are primarily intended to eat uncooked as a snack. We have had them both ways and they are quite good. They are extremely messy when the kids eat them dry and I am cleaning up dried noodles for a few days after- so they don't get these too often.
We have two kinds of milk drinks we buy. Yakult and Wahaha
here is the wikipedia snippet on what is Yakult.
Yakult- is a Japanese probiotic milk-like product made by fermenting a mixture of skimmed milk with a special strain of the bacteria Lactobacillus casei Shirota. - simple definition
It is considered to be a healthier drink for the kids. It has sugar so I don't let them drink all they want.
Wahaha is a yogurt drink that Jane prefers.
My kids call these drinks Milkys

In the picture I have Mango tic-tacs. I like the flavor of Mango and here in Hong Kong you can find almost anything that will have Mango as one of the flavors. Even potato chips. My new favorite Mango product is Nestles frozen Wonder bar. It has this popsicle like outer shell that is ok but inside is a creamy mango flavored "pudding"pop like texture.

Nathan's favorite store is Okashi Land - you can find Japanese snacks and toys for sale. Nathan says his two favorite things.
Elliot calls it moomookashi. I have no idea why- but it is one of those cute things you aren't in too big of a hurry to correct. The celing to floor selection can make you fill up your wicker basket quickly. The huge selection of seaweed products usually gets passed up by us. Pocky is always a good treat and one we could find in the states. I really like the Banana chocolate flavored. Nathan recently tried carrot juice in a can from there he said it was good.

Aug 4, 2009

Hong Kong ani-com convention

Anicom part 1 from outypants on Vimeo.

The Comi-con was just held in San Diego this past week. We went online and looked at everyone dressed up "cosplay" as it is known. Watched some clips of the Dr. Who panel Q&A. Nathan discovered that the ani-com convention was being held in HK. We decided to venture over to Wanchai and check it out. It cost less than $10 USD for us to enter as the kids were free. Way too many people, we braved a long line to enter a store. Nathan is a fan of a Japanese manga comic called One Piece. The kids are familiar with the characters, so we bought Elliot a "Luffy" hat and Jane a blanket. We found three girls dressed up as some of the characters. Elliot was excited at first so we were going to have him take a picture with them, but he was upset that they were all girls when two of the characters are boys. So he decided not to get his picture taken. He however in his Luffy hat which surprisingly he wore all day, had his picture taken dozens of times. We didn't recognize most of the cosplay we saw walking around but it was fun to snap pictures anyway. We were concerned that their might be some racy stuff, which goes with the territory of comics but fortunately most outfits were modest and it was easy to avoid or divert our attention from any display or pictures that were less than modest. We expected more Marvel/DC comics and didn't see Yotsuba stuff ( another Manga Nathan likes) but we would have been mad at ourselves for being this close and not attending one. We got to ride on a new ferry too. So overall we were glad we went.