Friday, September 30, 2011

Camels, Balloons, Cheetahs...Oh My!

I absolutely love the interim period between summer and fall. The nights are turning cooler, the leaves are slowly starting to change, and I get to attend some of my favorite Reno events of the year. Women in pink tutus and men in onesie pajamas racing camels and ostriches, Darth Vadar and panda balloons sailing across the sky, and cheetahs sprinting at full speed across the sagebrush. Really, these are some of the sights you'll see if you visit our corner of Nevada come September (jam packed in one weekend, nonetheless)!

Alright, since many of you may be confused at this point of time, let's tackle this one by one. Camel and ostrich racing? You bet! Come on down and "step back in time" to scenic Virginia City (only a 45 min. drive up the hill from Reno) where you'll see camels and ostriches alike race down the track for the weekend. If you're lucky, you'll see them buck off a rider or two (I know I did). If you haven't heard of the good ol' V-C (Virginia City), I suggest you check it out - especially if you're partial to old mining towns, ghosts, and cowboys (it was also where Mark Twain officially began his writing career). What I really like about Virginia City is that, although it's a "tourist" kind of town, it doesn't give off that feel at all. They've kept all their buildings intact as they were back in the day, the locals dress up in Victorian and western wear for fun, and they hold bizarre events like the International Camel Races.


 As most locals will tell you, the camel races began in true Virginia City spirit - as a hoax. In the Comstoke Lode days, camels were introduced to the area as pack animals to carry supplies but, of course, as the steam railroad grew in popularity - taking off much of the proverbial load - the somewhat smelly and not too agreeable animals were released into the hills...never to be seen again (so they say). Until in 1959, a local editor wrote a fictitious account of a camel race held in none other than Virginia City. The next year, he followed up with this prank for an announcement in the paper for the event. In true Virginia City spirit, the locals answered the challenge - borrowing a camel from the San Francisco Zoo. And, as they say, the rest is history.


 Fast forward to the camel races in 2011 where the spectator crowd grows just as much as the antics do. Of course, this time around, prize-winning alpacas were also roaming around - cute as a button and soft as...well, alpaca.

Feeding the locals...







So if you're in our neck of the sagebrush come September - be sure to stop in Virginia City for a ramblin' good time.





May the Wind Currents Be With You...

Of course, your weekend doesn't stop there. We still have Darth Vadar and panda balloons to discuss! During your stay in Reno, Nevada (after visiting Jimmy Beans Wool, of course!), be sure to check out the "Great Reno Balloon Race", too! This particular race, although also extending the three days of the weekend, happens in the air and is just as much fun. Wake up early to see "Dawn Patrol" where five balloons rise in the wee hours of the morning to light up the sky. It's truly a beautiful sight and I wish I had pictures to share but...alas, I was tired and too busy drinking my thermos of coffee. However, I did snap shots of the main event - literally hundreds of hot air balloons taking flight. And yes, it really is a race! There are targets set up on the ground where participants will throw their 'markers' to track their course and at stake is a whoopin' $10,000.



Now, I know I mentioned cheetahs...and yes, we really do have a cheetah in Nevada and it is not at a zoo (or a casino). The Animal Ark is a wildlife sanctuary that harbors injured animals (or those no longer fit to remain in the wild) in a natural setting. So they have a few different types of animals ranging from wolves and bears (oh my!) to foxes and owls...and, of course, cheetahs! The Animal Ark believes that because cheetahs were built for speed so in order for them to be happy and healthy cheetahs, they must run at top speed regularly. So they built a track where the cheetah's favorite toy is run along a wire - at 70 mph...and they chase it! The people who run the "Ark" do this once a week with their cheetahs but only invite the public every other month. So we finally went and of course it was awesome. It's amazing to see a grown cheetah act like a kitten - trying to pounce on its favorite toy and after, purr like one too!

So - I'm not entirely sure what this post was supposed to be about. Maybe to give readers out there some sort of idea of where we're located and what we actually do around here. Alright, maybe we don't do this every week but it's fun checking out the 'local' areas of interest....right? :) What about your hometown? Any annual events that we should be on the look-out for?

Anyways, I hope everyone out there is having fun, staying safe, and enjoying the seasons change...day by day. Happy knitting!
Shevawn





Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Kersti is here!!




No sooner had Kersti hit the shelves then we were bombarded with questions from all of you! To clear the air, we've decided to dig in deeper and give you not only a first hand interview with Taiu- creator of Kersti (both the yarn and the young woman), but also give you a chance to try it out for free with a giveaway!

Here's what Taiu had to say about Kersti:





JBW: Tell us about Kersti -your daughter and the yarn!


Taiu: Kersti the Yarn is a wonderful DK weight merino yarn, soft to work with and wear. The yarn is perfect for babies for its cushiony soft feel. It is also a wonderful 3 season sweater weight yarn. We introduced Kersti to the market in 2003, as consumers  were demanding a Koigu hand painted Merino Yarn. It has really been a little sister yarn to KPM /KPPPM (Kersti was just a perfect name for the yarn at the time)!
Kersti the Daughter has grown up right in the middle of the Koigu business. She was born in 1998. My mother and I were still dying in our old farm house at the time, doing retail/wholesale. Kersti was 3 months old when we took her along to our last retail show Stitches East.  In early 2000 we had a play area near us for Kersti while my mother and I dyed yarn. As our Wool Shed grew she got a play room. Riding a tricycle or scooter from one end to the other of the wool shed was a daily routine.





JBW: What's your favorite project you've made with the Kersti yarn?


Taiu: My favourite project in the Kersti is The Cubes Block and Squares blanket in Koigu Magazine 1  - firstly it is really fun to make, and secondly the blanket is so cozy on the couch watching TV -while  and after you have made it.

I also love wearing Kersti Yarn Pullover, a cowl type sweater for the winter. As you can see, it is as much fun to make and design a garment or item as it is to enjoy the finished product!


JBW: Does Kersti also work with you? If so, what does she do there?


Taiu: Modeling for many of our Koigu ads. Many of our customers love to see our next ad to see how Kersti has grown up!!


JBW: Is she interested in the farm, the dying, the design?


Taiu: Kersti is a very busy 13 year old. With dance , piano and other school activities. Yes she has “hobby” interests into the dying and designing --The fashion forward  teenager!!

Kersti also has had her own hand dyed silk scarf business. At the age of 8! I am waiting for the next idea. In the last year Kersti has taken to crochet – we might see some designing by her soon. As to the farm, well there is no choice there, we have a motto, and that is team work, we all need to pitch in. Kersti enjoys the sheep and is very eager to show in 4H next year.
As Kersti gets older the knitting world will see her more at shows helping out – like Vogue Knitting Live NY. Kersti Helped out Soho in a pinched and was a fill-in model for their fashion Shows. Now at VK live LA she will be back stage help while I am teaching.



Thank you so much to Taiu and Kersti! The soft squishiness of this yarn is unbelievable! Don't believe us? Then try to win some!! We will be giving away 2 hanks of this yummy yarn to 5 readers of our blog! In order to enter, leave a comment here telling us what job you would want to do most on a sheep farm by Monday, October 3rd at midnight PST! (Only one entry per person please!) We will select and post the winners on Tuesday, Oct. 4th post.  

Thank you and good luck! Bethany

P.S. You won't want to miss our next couple of Newsletters, as we have some really exciting top secret stuff that should be revealed there soon! Our Newsletters come out twice monthly, are free, secure and just down right fun!




Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Touch Me Winner!!

Alright- we will keep it short and sweet! Thank you to the almost 100 people who left comments about how wonderful Touch Me is! 
Thanks to random.org, our winner is Jen, who left this comment:



Jen said...

I have not tried Touch Me yarn but would love the chance to try it!!
September 21, 2011 10:16 AM

Jen- Please email your full name, address, phone number and colorway preference to giveaway@jimmybeanswool.com within 48 hours. If we do not hear from you we will pick another winner. 


Thanks again to everyone for entering and to Kirstin at Muench for sharing her wonderful story. :)


Bethany


P.S. You won't want to miss our next couple of Newsletters, as we have some really exciting top secret stuff that should be revealed there soon! Our Newsletters come out twice monthly, are free, secure and just down right fun!


Monday, September 26, 2011

The Truth is Out There...

That's right, there are really UFO's in my life and their little aliens want to take me to their leader! They actually live in my closet and have been probing my mind lately....to take action, which is just what I am going to do!

Okay, okay...you and I both know (at least, I hope you do!) that I am talking about my U.F.O.'s (a.k.a. unfinished objects/knitting projects). I yanked some of them out of the alien hive recently and have been just  plugging away at them. Focus, Jeanne...focus!

In the following pictures, you can see only a few of the 'aliens' I'm referring to. This is the point where I chose to begin the process of finishing all of my projects (gasp)!


Beginning at the upper right hand corner, you can see my China Vest from the book Folk Vests. I am so close to finishing this one, it's almost scary! Moving counter clockwise, you'll see my Lace Ribbon Scarf (out of Amber's 1st Kitchen LLE Shepherd Sock), the Be Sweet Diagonal Shawl I started some 2 years ago, my Shetland Cardigan (wince) from a very, very long time ago, and then  of course there is my Shoal Water Shawl and my Hemlock Ring. Can you hear that heavy sigh???






So, this is my plan. I will continue to work on my Umaro blanket, while finishing up one project at-a-time from the surviving projects on this list.

I am usually not a violent person but some of these projects must be torn apart to become something else. So, I'm going to take a deep breath and frog my Shoal Water Shawl and Hemlock Ring blanket. I know this will be a liberating experience and the yarn will just go back into my stash to someday become something else which will actually be finished!


However, I have decided that I am ABSOLUTELY going to finish my China Vest and my Shetland Sweater. So the vest will be first, with the sweater next in line.

The sad thing is that these are only a few of the projects that I have to make decisions about. Baby steps, right?! These projects are the first on the list and I am really going to focus - really this time! :)

I will most likely fall back into the control of the aliens soon as I do have some Mukluk slippers to make for gifts...but I am truly committed to this cause and will fight hard to stay on track!!!

As Elizabeth Zimmerman as my witness, I will finish something!! Wish me luck as I work to thwart the alien hoard living in my closet! How about you? Are you a million-projects-at-once kind of knitter or dedicated to one project at a time type of knitter? How do you tackle your own U.F.O.s (if any)? Any useful tips for knitters like myself?

As always, happy knitting and crocheting!! Jeanne

P.S. If you aren't getting our FREE twice-a-month e-mail Newsletter, you should really check it out. It's the only way I can keep up with things around the shop these days and I work here...LOL! We value your privacy so we NEVER EVER share your email address with anyone...check it out!

Friday, September 23, 2011

FO Friday! (And a few WIP's too.)

Happy Friday, everyone!  I hope you are all well!  I wanted to share with you some of the knitting that has been happening around the shop lately.  There has been a whole lot of it, that's for sure!

I thought I would show you in all picture form, if that's okay! Knitting speaks louder than words! :) All of these projects and details on the yarns and patterns used can be found on our Project Log. Just search by "creator" or just sift through the many pages of wonderful projects the "Little Beans" have knit over the years. They are listed as most recent to oldest, so finding these should be easy! Here goes:

Shevawn's "Little Colonnade Shawl" by Stephen West in
Tosh Merino Light

Jeanne's "Umaro Throw" by Jared Flood in
Cascade Eco Wool 

Shevawn's "Seedling Beret" by Alana Dakos of
Never Not Knitting in Tosh Vintage

Sharon's "Guernsey Wrap" by Jared Flood in
Misti Alpaca Best of Nature Worsted 

Jeanne's Shibui "Transition Gloves" in Shibui Sock

Leanne's Top-down Mitts from "Modern Top-Down Knitting"
in Be Sweet Bamboo Yarn

Amber's first pair of socks from the Churchmouse
"Turkish Bed Socks" Pattern in Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock

Sandy's "Heartbeat Hat" by Christa Giles (found on Ravelry)
in Misti Alpaca Tonos Worsted

I'm just loving all the fun projects flying off the Beans' needles these days.  I hope you do, too!  So inspirational!

Happy knitting and crocheting!
Kristen

PS.  Are you headed to the Interweave Knit Lab in San Mateo, CA in November?  Come visit us at our booth and star in some JBW product reviews to earn a 20% "Employee Discount" coupon!  Email Shevawn (shevawn(at)jimmybeanswool.com) for more info and to sign up!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Muench Touch Me guest blog and giveaway!


Red Velvet
The ever irresistible Touch Me Yarn has been making our fingertips swoon since 1991. In order to celebrate the 20 year anniversary, we sat down with good friend to Jimmy Beans Wool and owner of Muench Yarns, Kirstin Muench, to talk about this amazing fiber! 

JBW: Tell us a little about Touch Me. 
Kirstin: Touch me was inspired by an old friend of the Muench Family, and actually helped develop the yarn in Italy in 1989-1990…..we have been selling Touch Me since 1991 and we don't see that stopping any time soon!

JBW:What is it about Touch Me that you think appeals to so many people? 
Kirstin:The softness, and richness of color, its like velvet, and every girl loves velvet!



JBW: We LOVE this super cute slouch hat pattern! Can you tell us a little about it? 
Kirstin: Lisa Daniels of Lafayette California designed this beauty! She owns a LYS and has lots of ladies coming in wanting to knit chemo caps….well having way too much experience with Chemo, she knew that Chemo leaves the scalp hurting an awful lot once the hair has fallen out, so she wanted to knit a cap that would lay softly on the head and not bind too much, well not only did she achieve that, it’s a wonderful fashion Item as well. Chemo or no Chemo it’s a darn adorable hat!  (Pictured here in color #3610)


JBW: How does Muench find designers for your yarns?
Kirstin: We have many designers contact us, every week, with ideas for our yarns, or ideas where they are looking to find a yarn to match the characteristics of what they need to create the correct knitted fabric. We are open to encouraging new designers and hope knitters will post pictures on our Facebook page, if its original and we like it, you many be hearing from us!

JBW: Have people approached you about designing with Touch Me? What do they say? 
Kirstin: Touch me has been around such a long time, it’s a funny thing….some customers say oh, I’m done with that yarn when they get bored with something, but not Touch me! We sell it consistently all year long and we sell it well! Because it’s sold so well, lots of ideas are generated by shops, designers and the public, it’s really exciting! Here's a Poncho pattern that a customer sent us that everyone loves!!

In honor of the 20 year anniversary, we have put together a SWEET Touch Me giveaway for all of you loyal readers! We are giving away a Slouchy Hat Kit! The winner will receive 3 skeins Touch Me, the hat pattern and a set of the new Dreams knitting needles and double points to do the job- and all on a super cute Kit bag!

To enter, leave a comment on this blog telling us why you love Touch Me by Monday, September 26th at midnight PST. (Only one per person please!) We will announce the winner on Tuesday, September 27th, so be sure to check back!

We want to give a huge thank you to Kirstin at Muench. She is one of our favorite people of all time and we couldn't be more excited and honored to be around her!! If you want to learn more about Muench Yarns and Touch Me, be sure to check them out here:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MuenchYarns
Website: http://www.muenchyarns.com/

Happy Knitting and Crocheting!
Bethany

PS- Do you subscribe to our bi-monthly newsletter? If you did, you would get hot tips about giveaways like this one delivered right to your inbox!



Monday, September 19, 2011

Settling in and the circle of excellence!!

It's hard to believe that we have been in the new space for over 2 weeks now...WOW! So I thought you might like a quick update on how things are moving along now and believe me they are!




Shevawn and Sharon are having a blast in the new space
We are starting to get organized now and it is so easy to find things that it is hard to remember how we were working before.  I shudder to think how we were running around literally dancing as we moved! One little bean would come down an isle and the other little bean would give way with a nice dance move. Well now there is no fancy foot work going on and it's GREAT!!!!


There is always time for a quick hug and smile at JBW's (of course that's not a new thing around here :).



Piet is enjoying one of the shipping desks




We now have a lovely shipping area with mail carts that can be rolled out to be picked up easily. No more fumbling packages...woohoo!! You can see that Piet is really happy about that!








Terry and her Retail gals have things moving right along


Got needles?? Well we do and they are so organized here on the slat wall in the retail space! Good work Terry and crew!!

Oh yea be sure to check out the Kollage square needles and hooks we have just added to the line up! I LOVE them!!!






Here Sara is saying goodbye to Amber on our new white board


Sara has been with us for a bit now and is leaving to go the college in Chicago. We will miss her!! (Although we know she will knock 'em dead there!)

Good luck Sara! We can't wait until the holidays to see you!








On top of all of that exciting news you have been out there rating us with Bizrate and we can't thank you enough!! This is the 3rd year in a row that you have rated us as a top customer service company (which has put us in the Circle of Excellence!!).  We are truly proud to be among only 83 business's to receive the award and humbled too! We are so happy that we are meeting your expectations!

You all deserve the best of everything when you are shopping and we really appreciate you looking to us to get it. However, don't worry we won't sit on our laurels, as our goal is to make sure you get the products and customer service you deserve!! Thank you ALL for your business and for taking the time to rate us!!! Thanks, thanks and thanks!!!

As always happy knitting and crocheting! Jeanne

PS you won't want to miss our next couple of Newsletters, as we have some really exciting top secret stuff that should be revealed there soon! Our Newsletters come out twice monthly, are free, secure and just down right fun!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Some Field Trips and Exploration! Part 1

Since I’ve actually been here for about 3 weeks, my apartment alone isn’t the only place that I have gone. So instead of making this one massively long post, I am going to blitz you all some shorter posts about some of the adventures and experiences I have had thus far. All right…ready…set...go!

The first week here was kind of hectic and a little bit overwhelming. On the first day that we got here, we went to Carrefour, which is basically a smaller French equivalent to Wal-Mart. And that’s when I got the sense that I wasn’t in Kansas anymore, Toto. I have never felt as bombarded by being foreign as I did that day. I can barely read the Hanzi (Chinese characters) and people are coming at me like I am a national. And all I can do is just shrug helplessly and look pitiful, and I think they get the fact that I can’t really understand what they are saying. I was done with that place in about 10 minutes. But, after a couple more trips (less hectic since we kind of then knew our way around), our apartment is finally almost completely set up.


Yes.


School started, now we are barreling our way through some Chinese grammar and vocabulary. Dictations every day. Homework every night. So much reading for my other classes. Procrastination still lives in these veins. lol But, it seems like it is getting a little bit better. A few of you might be glad to know that my timeliness has improved. I will be going home, knowing how to be at a place on time. lol Most of the time. But the Chinese mentality here is that whatever doesn’t get done today, can be done tomorrow. So timeliness actually isn’t a ginormous deal here. (And I just wrote ginormous in Microsoft Word, and it did not tell me that it was incorrect. This day just keeps on getting better and better.) Chinese time - kind of like Spanish time. A lot of places even take long breaks in the middle of the day. Like a siesta but just a little bit shorter.


This guy was sound asleep on a busy street. Too cool.

Some of the first things I noticed when we were riding around Chengdu was:

1. They drive crazier here than in Beijing.
2. There are less people than in Beijing.

3. It is a little more relaxed than Beijing.

4. Things stay open way later than Reno. Restaurants, convenience stores, shops. (This one I noticed when we went out the other night.)


With the exception of #1. I definitely prefer Chengdu. Guess I chose a city just right for me. =)

More to come.

Ailene





Friday, September 16, 2011

Featured Products Friday!

Happy Friday everyone!  I hope all is well in everyone’s world!  I’ve got some exciting Featured Products for you this week so I hope you all enjoy.  We’ve got tons of new fall products coming in, but these days, I am mostly excited about some of the new books and patterns that are arriving each week.  You’ll notice this post is quite heavy in both.  Either way, I hope you enjoy!

First off, we have one of the cutest books I’ve ever seen!  A garden gnome, a fried egg, a cactus, and a juicy looking pear.  What do all of these things have in common?  They are all little teeny tiny items you can make with Teeny Tiny Mochimochi!  This book contains the blueprints, aka. patterns, to knit some of the cutest teeny tiny items.  I am thinking about getting it just so I can make the Garden Gnome for my Christmas tree this year.  So adorable!

Next is the newest magazine from Interweave--Holiday Gifts 2011!  Interweave has has really gone all out this year.  The “Holiday Gifts” editions are always chalk full of wonderful designs and this year is truly no exception.  When I flipped through this issue, I felt the distinct strong urge to knit, not an unusual feeling for me, but you know, it was stronger than usual. I loved the cowls, hats, and slippers, but I especially loved the holiday decor.  I NEED to make the cute felted Christmas Trees!  I must be crazy for thinking about the holidays so early, but I suppose if you have big knitting plans, it’s never too early! 

Another great book is the new Rowan Purelife Home.  I’ve noticed Rowan doing a lot more with crochet lately and I really like it!  This book uses all of their Purelife line of yarns to create fantastic works of art.  From the textured knitted rug to the gorgeous crocheted throw, there is all kinds of great home ideas in this book!  I really love the crocheted doily rug too.  It’s chunky and gorgeous, what more could you want?

Has anyone else fallen as hard for Winged Knits as I have?  I absolutely love Cecily Glowick MacDonald’s beautiful patterns.  Her design aesthetic really speaks to me and I love how simple yet interesting her garments are.  The Crestview Jacket, a new-to-Jimmy-Beans pattern, is absolutely gorgeous and just makes me want to drop everything else on the needles and knit it!  Done in a nice heavy aran weight with a lovely wrapped stitch lace panel down the back, this jacket is perfect for fall and winter.  My conscience is giving me a wrist slap and telling me no more new projects...but that doesn’t mean I can’t tempt everyone else!

Lastly, I am so excited to finally announce that the Addi Lace Click Tips have arrived!  Well, most of them anyway.  We finally received our first shipment of the Lace Click Tips after waiting for quite some time!  Those who are excited to build on their existing Addi Click or Addi Lace Click sets, now’s the time!  We also have the Natura Click tips too in case you wanted the bamboo!  I know I have the Addi Lace Clicks on my Holiday Wishlist this year, and I’ll probably get a few extra tips for those sizes I use the most!  


Anyway, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!  I’m off today and I’m heading to a local farm to pick lots and lots of tomatoes and hopefully make some sauces and salsas to can for winter.  I’m also working on a fun test knit for this lovely gal on Ravelry in Tosh Merino Light.  What are you all up to?    


Happy knitting and crocheting!
Kristen




Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Project Pack Attack!!!

Jimmy showing off the
first project packs!
Happy Wednesday everyone!  I hope you all are well.  :)  I wanted to take a few minutes to talk about Project Packs!  Who’s been collecting them?  I know I have!

For those who have no clue what I am talking about, the project packs are the bags we ship our orders in!  About a year ago, we started printing a free pattern on all of our shipping bags for your enjoyment.  We posted about them on the blog and mentioned that we’d do a contest at some point to see who collected the most.  
You sure do!!!


And then we got busy.  Really busy.  You know, with all kinds of knitting and crochet related stuff.  No excuses, I know. :)  
Well, we just wanted to check in and make sure that people were still collecting them.  We will be holding a contest in the future, but I wanted to update you on some new fun patterns we’ll have out soon!


For a recap, here’s what we’ve had so far:
Bag 1- Honey Do Sock Pattern from Lorna's Laces
Bag 2- Meadow Bolero from the winner of our Landscape Collection Contest: Heather Miller
Bag 3- Make No Mistake Scarf- by our very own Jeanne Giles
Bag 4- Mushishi Cowl from Plymouth yarns
Bag 5- Chrysalis Cowl from Madelinetosh
Bag 6- Lace and Cables Capelet by Norah Gaughan for Berroco 


We'll be posting these freebies on the "Free Patterns" section of our site soon for those of you who missed out.  We'll let you know when they are up!
Hm.  That face looks familiar! :)

And coming soon to the Project Packs we have....drumroll please...a gorgeous design from Artyarns and a fun baby items from Muench!


So anyway, we’ve been having a lot of fun with these project packs and we hope you are too!  Keep saving them...we are planning a contest for next year to coincide with our official 10th anniversary!


Happy knitting and crocheting!
Kristen

Monday, September 12, 2011

Finally - Chengdu!

Read about Ailene's life as she finally arrives in Chengdu, China.

Finally - Chengdu!
Blue skies! There were BLUE skies today. I woke up this morning, and I could not believe it. It was like a whole new world. So amazing. I honestly did not think I would have the chance to see blue skies again until I got home. We have been in Chengdu for almost 2 weeks and that week in Beijing and almost every day was humid and the skies were “overcast” so I never saw any blue skies. But I guess those really were clouds (for the most part) here in Chengdu. I caught the tail end of a really beautiful day for you to see! For you it might be ordinary sky, but for me it was a miracle. Appreciate it people. You don’t know what you have. Missing those open blue skies surrounded by mountains at home. Among some other things. Lol I figure I’ll have a list in a few weeks. I’ll share with you when it is a little more substantial.


I only caught the tail end of it, but it was completely clear this morning...I swear!

The weather here is really great though otherwise. It has been raining at night the past couple nights, leaving the city a lot cooler with less humidity. If only every day were like this weather. Perfect. Not too hot, but not so cool that you have to put on a jacket. And barely any humidity. That’s the best part. Lol So a few of you have been curious, so here is what my apartment looks like. Captions included.

Apartment buildings are definitely the norm here. View from my bedroom window.

My bedroom! I lucked out and got the biggest one.

Super tiny kitchen.

The maid's door...what?! lol These apartments were intended for rich people. The maid has a separate entrance to keep her away from the rich folk.

Our living room. In the side of the picture you can see the rack where we dry our clothes. No dryers here. Luckily no handwashing though.

This apartment is A LOT bigger than what I expected. My classmates in the dorms even have really big single rooms. And by Chinese standards, we are in big spaces. In the Chinese dorms at school, it is 4 to a small room with no heating. We are definitely just as lucky here as we are back home. Our particular apartment is a little bit run down but we are definitely okay here. We even have an extra bedroom since there is only 2 of us! Ever drop by in Chengdu during the semester and I have a place for you to stay. lol

Whelp, I figure that’s a pretty good introduction to life for me here in Chengdu. Definitely more to come!

Ailene