Thursday, March 15, 2007

Our Apartment

Here are my favorite accessories in the apartment -- princesses! We simply had to bring dress-up clothes to China! The girls are standing in the middle of the living room. The light-brown square behind them is our dining-room table, which folds down.

Next, see our balcony, complete with washing machine, and like every other balcony in China, clothes hanging out to dry. Next, you can see our refrigerator near my desk in the alcove off the living room. The wall on the right is the kitchen wall.Below is the girls' room, photo taken from their door. The blue and white thing on the right is their dresser. The cleaners had just changed the sheets, so their comforters are folded at the foot of their beds and their blankets are folded at the head of the bed. I guess that's how they let us know the sheets have been changed, because usually they make up the beds. The middle photo is our kitchen, and the photo on the right is our water heater in the shower. I've acquired the knack now of actually having enough hot water to wash and rinse my hair TWICE! Of course, we shut off the water while soaping, and turn it back on for rinsing, but even doing that I had a hard time getting TWO shampooings! I can even wash both girls -- body and hair -- in the same session! We have adopted the Chinese approach to hygiene, and we don't shower all that much, or change clothes all that much. I pretty much have a visible-stain rule for putting clothes in the dirty-clothes hamper! The shower is the only place with running hot water, so I boil water to wash dishes.

The last photo is my bedroom. All of the beds have incredibly heavy duvets and then the flowery velour blanket. They also have awful gold bedspreads, but we've just put those away permanently. I wonder what the cleaners think of that! I bet they think Americans are really strange!

There is blue carpet throughout the apartment, even in the kitchen (the bathroom is tiled). When the cleaners vacuum it, they kind of stab at the visible stuff with the tube, and don't run the vacuum over the whole surface. So the carpet is pretty grimy. I'm working hard to enforce the slippers-in-the-house rule with the girls, but I'm afraid it's a losing battle. (We try not to wear our shoes in the house, because Chinese streets aren't all that sanitary -- Chinese people do a lot of spitting and nose-clearing directly onto the street. But I have to admit there is much less of that than there used to be -- the government has been cracking down because of the Olympics!).

The walls throughout the apartment are completely bare, so I'm looking for some things to hang on the walls. I'd love some large textile pieces to cover lots of surface and warm things up in here. But all in all, it's a fine apartment.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the apt photos. That helps to "picture" you there. It looks better than I had anticipated.

Anonymous said...

Hey Malinda,

Thanks for the photos. My favorite one, of course, is the princess shot. Your girls are definitely amazing, I appreciated your family day/ 1/2 birthday post. Hope y'all enjoyed the celebration. I agree that you are one lucky Mom!!

Have a great day!,

Anonymous said...

Hi Malinda...
Just got caught up on your blog - wow! It's so fun to see what it's like to live in China through your eyes. You are right - you have two little amazing princesses! I can't even imagine how Bryce and Mia would react to the experiences that Maya and Zoe have had. Keep the posts coming! We'll be ready for a scrapbook retreat when you return!
Take care,
Linda Winfield

Anonymous said...

You are quite the writer! I am enjoying the story.

Anonymous said...

You could always hang the gold bedspreads on the wall...just kidding. It was good to "talk" to you last night. All is well here.

Lesa said...

Hi Malinda and girls,
I am so enjoying your adventures and by far the stories.
Happy belated Family Day and 1/2 a birthday! That 1/2 is very important! Wendy's is on May 4th; her oldest sisters birthday. They have a special red thread.
I can't even imagine how it would be to have to answer the same question about the girls being yours over and over.
I know I will get my turn soon. Hopefully we will be in China in December with our Referral being in October 07'.

Lesa Lambert