Tuesday, May 25, 2010

New Stuff

We are moving from our furnished flat to an unfurnished home in one month. I have the task of furnishing our new home in China in a very short amount of time. I lucked out with a wonderful shop in Shanghai called Kenas.  I could easily take two of everything!
We purged lots of furniture in Chicago before our move and put our collections in storage. I can see all of these pieces working beautifully in our home back in the States. I am guessing that we will have to rent an entire ship to bring everything back.

Saturday, May 8, 2010


Gorgeous people, scenery, pagodas, mountains, and a lake to boot!

We went on a little trip to the historical  city of Hangzhou, just a two hour drive from Shanghai. It is perhaps the most beautiful place I have ever seen. Italian explorer, Marco Polo described Hangzhou as "without doubt, one of the finest and most splendid cities in the world". The city has a history dating back more than 2,200 years!

Some of China's finest tea leaves come from the mountains in Hangzhou. I can't begin to describe the wonderful smell of the toasting tea leaves.

I want to live in this house!

We hiked up a million stairs to get to this pagoda, I almost had to live here. The thought of climbing back down all of those stairs was truly daunting.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Recreating The Cute

I have found a source for simple and super inexpensive glass containers. I will fill my jars with the cute candy I find during my travels. The candy aisle of the grocery store is one of my favorite spots, the packaging and graphics are adorable. There is quite a bit of candy imported from Japan and that wins my cutest candy prize. 

I bought this decrepit old blue chair from the flea market. The vendor was using the chair to hold a box of prints, and he seemed quite surprised that we were interested in the chair and not the prints. Most vendors start  price negotiations very high, sometimes 90% over what they end up accepting. The haggling over the chair started at his opening offer of $3.00!!!!
 I found the Mao doll at the coolest store in the French Concession called Madame Mao's Dowry. They carry the most spectacular old Chinese propaganda posters and wonderful antiques.
It occurs to me that with the glass jars and the beginning of a blue chair collection in China, we are replicating some of our favorite things from back home.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Sticks And Stones

Beautiful stone paths and designs can be seen all around Shanghai, even the little mall near our home has a beautiful river stone floor.  I can't wait to make my own stone walkway back in the U.S., I feel quite inspired!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Trying To Butter Me Up?

I have been looking high and low for a large blackboard to use as our family calendar, just like we had in Chicago. Who knew this would be so difficult? I have found a few blackboards hanging in old shops, but the shopkeepers treat me like a serial killer when I try to pantomime that I want to buy their old beaten up board. Can you see that she is ready to use deadly force with a corn cob to get me to move along?