This is us.  The one showing lots of shoulder (in her Chengdu, China Marine Ball ball gown!) is the EFM who writes this blog. The one wearing a tux (James) is the employee who moves her (and their two sons) around all over the world. The red link, below, is how you can get in touch with me...

The time in Chengdu, China

Chengdu: city of fabulous food and beautiful Buddhist monasteries!
Yes, Beijing's Forbidden City (pictured, above) is really pretty and all, but I like Chengdu much better than Beijing!

In Our Same Boat (with State)

  • Beyond the Cornfields
    Brand-new State Department family in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Love their two little girls (she just recently had a baby while being posted in Dhaka), horticulture, traveling and adventure!
  • Email From The Embassy
    State Department family formerly in Beijing, China, and recently posted to Amman, Jordan. A trailing spouse, she's also a writer, and frequently publishes articles with major news sources. A very experienced State family, this new post is something like overseas post number six or seven for them.
  • Just US
    A beautiful family of seven - they have arrived at their new post: Jerusalem! They just finished off an unaccompanied tour to Iraq and are very much looking forward to sightseeing around the middle east.
  • Our Life
    State Department family on their second post...Tijuana, Mexico. It's their first overseas assignment and they have two little boys. They love Tijuana so far and post pictures frequently! They also get to enjoy the best of both worlds for they can sneak over the border into San Diego when they want to!
  • The Dinoia Family
    State Department family formerly in California, now in DC for a DC tour. Next, the husband will do a one year unaccompanied tour. A very experienced State family (formerly in Iceland and Caracas) with a blog that has been around quite a while and has great archives. Jen has a sweet heart and a lot to give!
  • The Perlman Update
    State Department family formerly in Chennai, India, who then did a year-long unaccompanied tour in Iraq. They are now on a DC tour and after that will do another unaccompanied tour (Afghanistan). She totally tells it like it is and doesn't sugar-coat what life is really like. Witty, snarky, funny and down-to-earth. Look elsewhere if you want fake. Read if you want REAL.
  • Where in the World Am I?
    State Department family formerly in Bujumbura, Burundi and now in Hyderabad, India. They just had their first baby this summer - a beautiful little girl- (there's a separate blog about this) and she also eats gluten-free (with a separate blog, also).
One of the most intriguing things about Chengdu is that it is a seamless blend of ancient and modern... all together, side by side.

Can't Live Without (non-State)

  • Crass-Pollination: An ER blog
    The best ER nurse blog EVER!
  • Doctor Grumpy in the House
    The best doctor blog EVER!
  • In Which...
    My IRL friend, a stay-at-home, homeschooling Mama of seven. Her darling daughters are, goshdarnit, probably too young to be hoped for as my future daughters-in-law.
  • The Crib Chick
    My IRL friend, a stay-at-home, homeschooling Mama of five. Hopefully two (Any two! I'm not picky!) of which are my future daughters-in-law.
  • the underwear drawer
    An anesthesiologist who is possibly the most talented & entertaining writer ever. I've read her blog ever since she started medical school. No, don't know her in real life. Wish I did.
  • The Bloggess
    This blog is both hysterically funny and hilariously irreverent. I actually let my 17 year old son read it (who loves it as much as I do!), but wouldn't even CONSIDER letting my 12 year old son read it. Which is about all the description it needs!
The grounds of Chengdu monasteries can be very, very peaceful...even though they are smack dab in the heart of a city of millions of people.


Yes, there are Starbucks in Chengdu! All over the place, in fact. So much so, Starbucks even crafted mugs for Chengdu stores!
Texan bluebonnets. Because I learned during our very first posting (Houston) that there's nothing prettier in the spring than the meadows of Texas.
Blog powered by Typepad

« Don't Hate Us. Unless You Already Do. Not That I Blame You. | Main | Hello, Chengdu! It's Nice To Finally Meet You! »



Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


That makes me laugh.


Hahahaha! This is what a similar topic sounds like between Mother and Daughter (same age):
Me: Hey Tia, They have a ring sizer here at the Jewelery counter so we'll know what size to order your new Purity Ring.
Tia: Great :0)
Then she preceeds to try on diamond rings with me (my 20th anniversary is comin up)
Tia: My new favorite stone is diamonds! Forget the quartz stuff I used to like!
Me: Uh, oh
Then she proceeds to interview the Salesgirl (college age) about the job.
Me: Come on Tia we better catch up with Dad and the girls.
Tia: Sure, I have enough of an idea about working here. Then I could make some extra money and buy my own jewelry.
Me: Atta girl! :0)

Sara Roy

LOL! That's awesome!

Liz M

Nah, you'll still marry him off one day. There are girls out there who do not care to spend $5,000 (or even $1,000) on a dress they'll only wear once. Like yours truly!


I am trying to raise my kids with the idea that elaborate weddings are pure craziness - that it would make more sense to spend money on a car, or a house, or blow it all on a nice honeymoon. I've never(!) been a part of a fancy, expensive wedding where anyone, except maybe some of the guests who were not that involved, actually had real FUN. It's too stressful - always full of tears and hair pulling - to pull off such a production where a dress is merely one piece of the mess. I've found 'simple' weddings to be a more beautiful experience. Focus on the couple and their day, rather than whether the centerpieces match the cake and nothing clashes with the brides head-dress and blah blah blah. Hope your sweet young man one day finds a girl, not a -zilla of any sort, who makes him happy, has the sense NOT to want to spend 10yrs income on one hellish show-off party, and perhaps, prefers soft fluffy towels to that crepey lacey stuff gowns are usually made of... better for a nice beach wedding anyway ;)


You raised that boy right!!! =)

On another note, the show wouldn't get too many viewers if the show wasn't a touch absurd. For their NEXT segment I'd like them to consider the absurd idea of making dresses out of easily found household supplies. Like towels. THAT is a good one.



You are dating yourself with verbiage like 'cathode ray tube'....


@NKL: I bet a Project Runway/Say Yes to the Dress TV show is not that far away!!


Loved the post! Yeah, he won't wait for you to marry him off. He'll do it himself. He'll figure it out. He's just seventeen. You've raised him well and he will choose well. And who knows he may meet a girl that makes her own dress out of something recyclable or upcycleable - people come up with incredible things these days. It doesn't all have to be expensive (though a lot sure is).


Sounds good to me. My wife's "wedding dress" was a simple white dress she found on sale for $13.


Too funny! I saw that show for the first time this summer and it was a bit like watching a train wreck. I'm with Matthew that much money on a dress is obscene.

On the other hand I paid $70 for my weeding dress on sale, and as it was silver damask not white lace I've been able to wear it to several balls since we have joined the FS (yes it still zips even after all the kids) I am sure that when the time comes Matthew will have the sense to choose a wife who has common sense and can stick to a reasonable budget.



You've got some great boys. . . and they WILL marry lovely girls and you'll have amazing DILs. . . <3


That's funny. I rented my dress for under $100 as I didn't want to buy it. Overseas of course. Total we spent for the wedding and reception jointly - under $2500 and we had 70-80 guests. It's customary for the groom to pay for everything in the country I am from but we both pitched in and made it easy for ourselves. Not that my dad was too happy that he could NOT invite all 500+ of his friends and people I don't know... but he got a great son-in-law who he loves just as much as myself or even more :-)

The comments to this entry are closed.

James loves me. And our sons. And his job. But not having his picture taken. In 2011 he finished up over a year and half of training, and in the fall of 2011 we got to our first overseas post - Chengdu, China!
Mao says hi! Because Chengdu is one of the only cities in China with a Mao statue.
Flowers are like friends. Each one is unique. Each one is beautiful. They brighten up everything around them. And you can never have too many. 

Become a Fan

2012 is the Year of the Dragon, y'all! Talk about the ultimate in good luck! This kinda party only comes around once every twelve years!
free counters
Colorful! (Inside a Chengdu ancient Buddhist monastery.)
Have I mentioned that I absolutely adore taking pictures? Here are some that I've taken recently:
A Daring Adventure's items Go to A Daring Adventure's photostream