First (whole) family trip to Taiwan: Day 1

Semi live blog:

It has been 13 years since MommyMd and I went to Taiwan. Vivi was fortunate to go back with Nainai right after her 4th birthday.

5/2016 vivi’s first trip to taiwan

Now 13 years later with a Juju, we venture back to the humid hot island of Taiwan.

6/2018 family trip, Vivi’s second adventure

Waiting for the plane

Up at 3 am finishing packing. Vivi and Juju we’re a little difficult to rouse but the excitement set in and we were off to the airport.

First let me tell you TSA Precheck is amazing. First time using.

There was a super long line to get through security, and no line at the PRE check. If you don’t have Precheck, get it!

6am: Now that we got here super early, we got 2 hrs to wait.

Might as well explore

Exploring concourse B @CMH: family bathroom


Things are getting silly now: “I’m queen of the world!” ~Juju


8:20am local Chicago time (9:20 in Ohio)

Excited to be enroute to the next flight.

Going through that lighted path at ORD

I used to love running through here

Enjoying the United club. If you happen to have an extended layover anywhere, access to the United Club is very nice.

9:37am Chicago time: on the plane, let’s go to SFO


1215pm (315pm ohio) touchdown to SFO.

Short layover then on the Long haul.

And after a 1hr delay

225p:Ready to board

So grandma got upgraded to a better seat so it left a gap in our eating. Somehow I got screwed with a center seat between strangers. Yay.

12hrs + of fun

They look like they are having fun

Must be nice

Complimentary treats with the international flights.

So I caved and purchased the inflight internet. I can only watch so many movies nonstop.

Finished Geostorm, Justice League, 12 Soldiers, now watching Downsizing.

Very hard to sleep and not end up leaning on your neigbor.

The girls are splayed out and are out.

I’m not even sure what time it is. I thinks it’s 1018p Ohio time. Still 9 hrs left.

6.5 hrs left. Just finished I, Tonya and now Hostiles

Done with jumanji. Less than 2 hrs left

Someone just woke up

Less than 1 hr left.

When to start training a baby… to use chopsticks…

Chop Sticks
Chop Sticks
The Asian fork

Vivienne loves to mimic us and do things we are doing. It’s rather cute. We were at Sunflower Chinese Restaurant this past weekend eating some Dim Sum, and ViviBear really wanted to play with our chop sticks. Well I figured what the heck. I let her have mine, since she already threw hers on the ground. The first thing she did was stab some shrimp dumplings [Hsia Jiao] (i was never good with the phonetics) and proceeded to feed herself. She stopped, and gave me a sly look and offered to me. Not a bad try. Heck I still stab food with my chopsticks too. Actually, I apparently do not even use chopsticks properly. When I spent a month in China a 4 years ago, the servers or owners at the local restaurants/food carts would love to point out to me how I use chopsticks really weird and like a child. Well whatever. Back to the point. I wonder if it is too early to start training Vivienne how to use chopsticks. Well, it’s kind of like me teaching her Chinese I suppose, or a penguin teaching a pomeranian how to fly. Well I at least can kind use chopsticks to move food from point A to point B, no matter how improper my technique.


“Vivi trying to use chopsticks”

On one of her attempts she actually grabbed some sticky rice with the chopsticks, but I unfortunately did not record that part. I dont really remember when I learned how to use chopsticks. maybe it’s innate in all Asian people (hah). I still find it amazing to watch ViviBear grow up, and start doing new things. I fear the day when she starts doing things I dont want her to. shudder. 

On a similar note, it’s funny to hear some people’s reaction to things like potty training. Vivienne has been using the baby toilet since about… 6 months? maybe earlier. I dont remember. There is a picture somewhere with a censored ViviPoo  Bombs in the Baby Bjorn After re-reading that post, I think she was around 6-7 months when she first started.


I figure, if we can train our offspring to do things early as possible, why not? I mean I do not forsee any sort of “traumatic experience” as long as we are not berating and yelling at them. I figure if I see her doing something, we can give her positive reinforcement such as fetching slippers:

I mean she started washing windows on her own (after watching Nai Nai do it) as soon as she could cruise:

“10 month old window washer (from MommyMD)”

Now I just need her to start mowing the lawn.

Happy Chinese New Year! do i still get red envelopes?

Starsky and Hutch - Dragons
Year of the Dragon
Year of the Dragon 2012

新年快樂,  恭禧發財! 紅包拿來!

“happy new year, be rich and prosperous! Give me the red envelope!”
Happy year of the dragon.

Do you know what would be better than one dragon? 2 dragons!

Starsky and Hutch - Dragons

Anyone know this reference?

Some may be familiar with Chinese New Year and the traditions entailed. Actually some people do not even realize there was even a Chinese New Year. There are multiple different new years depending on the culture which I definitely am not familiar with. A quick google search will bring up many results. The day of the Chinese New Year always changes relative to the roman calender we all use, since the Chinese New Year follows the Lunar Calender. My parents always seem to know when it is (probably because they seem to always have a lunar calender), but with the help of google, I can find that it is actually: MondayJanuary 23, 2012. [If you havent noticed yet, I am a huge fan of google]

The most familiar with the Chinese New Year is what my family mainly followed. Aside from that my knowledge is limited. What I do know is that every time this year, I could count on one thing:  Getting the “Hong Bao” [紅包], or red envelope. It has been Chinese tradition to hand out red envelopes of money to children during the new year. Something to do with good fortune and prosperity.

Hong Bao
"Hong Bao" - the Red Envelope that bears fortunes

From what I understood kids get the envelopes, and they are usually given by parents or other adults. Criteria would be once you have your own kids, you no longer get the envelopes, and if you have kids, you are expected to give out envelopes. This is just from what I gathered, and I don’t think is by far any credence to this. There probably also isn’t any hard fast rules at all. A mighty google search brings up some history behind this blessed envelope. That link will give you a more adequate explanation.

So what we had to do was get on our knees and in a sense beg/kowtow to our parents and exclaim: “恭禧發財! 紅包拿來!” or “be rich and prosperous! Give me the red envelope!”

So to the point, can I still expect to receive these red treasures? Am I supposed to be giving them out now?

I guess if you are within the criteria (younger generation) and kowtow to me and exclaim the magic words (in Chinese), you may find yourself the owner of a red envelope.

for proper pronunciation you can check out google translate.