National Holiday

Finally, I have a break from work! Since I moved over to the IT department of the company in late August, my days have been long. I used to only work 25 hours a week and I could spend more time with you, but my workdays now are 8 hours a day and about 45 minutes commute each way.

I could not really explain to you why I have been out so long, I’m sure you’re wondering where is Daddy? To be frank, our expenses had been mounting and we needed the money. Mommy takes care of you while Daddy is out making money for our family.

I did prefer to work in IT because it was much more interesting that working as an English teacher, but we had come up short of money so bad in July that ¬†we were using our savings from America just to pay to the bills. So things had to change. Shanghai is a big modern city, but its also expensive. When I was working only 25 hours a week, I also made less money. Just paying the rent used almost 45% of my paycheck. We still needed to have money for utilities, food, let alone go out sometimes or save any money for an emergency. Now in IT I make more money, so we have enough to pay our bills and maybe save a little for the future, but the cost has been time. I just don’t have as much time as would like to spend with my son. I still get to wake up with you in the morning and play for about an hour. Then I go to work. When I come home you are usually awake still and we can play for another hour or two before you are ready to sleep. I usually get the weekends off, but China has a unusual system where they make people work weekend days to make up for national holidays. I really don’t understand it well because it seems senseless to me. So I had to work a couple of six day weeks just so I could have a vacation on the National Holiday.

So finally, that time has come! The first thing we did was go the park! I love going to parks with you. I think you really enjoy it too. We go to Mengqing-yuan, and Daning Linshi Park, Century and today we Aoqing National Park by the Huangpu River. I love to see you get out of the house and enjoy sunshine and green grass and trees. I think you also like to run around. Its hard to believe you didn’t know how to walk 3 or four months ago because now you can almost run around! You can climb over stuff, go uphill and down hill too. I remember the first time we came to a slope, that was a bit of a challenge, because you had always walked on a falt surface. But now you can go uphill and downhill without falling over!

Your Mom’s mother and father, Grandma and Grandpa Wang came to visit a couple of weeks ago for your birthday. I bought you lots of toys including a SpongeBob backpack, a giant drum and horn, a soccer ball and net, and a big birthday ice-cream cake that had the number one on it! I think you still didn’t get what it was all about, but you seemed happy.

One other development was I opened up the playpen. Until your birthday, you usually stayed in your playpen, it was fenced in. But on your birthday we opened it up to the bedroom area and more of the living room so you could have much more room to move around. You seemed to immediately get a kick out of the increased space and started exploring the house with enthusiasm. Of course we had to move away anything that could be dangerous to you and we still do. You also seemed to get more confidence and felt excited as you realized that you could get around the house like Mom and Dad.

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