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Around the World recap Feb 2015

Another month has gone by here in Guangzhou, China!  It’s hard to believe that it’s already been more than 2 months since we’ve been here in China.  We were reminded of this because we had to make a “visa run” to Hong Kong since our 60 day time frame on our current visas was up.

But for Josh, he actually had all of his paperwork to get his official working Visa here in China – which is awesome!  We were able to apply for it in Hong Kong, and now he is just waiting for additional documents to finalize it all.  Once that is taken care of, he will be able to come and go and legally reside and work in China!

As for me, I had to come back into the country on another entry with my tourist visa – another 60 days.  However, I too have been offered a contract for full-time employment here in Guangzhou!  So now, I will need to go through the visa process to get my legal living and working papers for China.  So it looks like everything is coming together just as we planned.

Beyond getting visas squared away, much of February was devoted to Chinese New Year celebrations.  The Chinese New Year is a big deal here, and it goes on for a couple weeks.  It was so interesting to see it all first hand and learn about the different traditions – definitely some great experiences that we will never forget.

Finally, we spent a lot of time over the last month working on the website.  Our vision is coming together and we are super excited to have landed a few different partnerships that will help our readers actually plan out their trips and buy tickets in advance for really cool activities!  However, there’s still a lot of work to be done.

As far as spending goes, we had an expensive month in February.  Getting settled required some extra spending, as well as our visa trip to Hong Kong.  However, we hope to buckle down in the next couple months and do some saving because the income from our new jobs should finally be starting to hit the bank accounts!

Here is a quick spending recap for December & our favorite moments!

February Total Spending: $1610

Accommodations:

  • Rent – $330
  • Misc. utilities & property management dues  $80

Transportation, Food, Fun, Misc. Cash (all lumped together): = $1200

  • This included a fairly expensive long-weekend in Hong Kong – where we binged on expensive western food and a great hotel!  = $500
  • We also had some higher expenses at home, such as paying for faster speed internet (one year in advance) and bicycles to get around town.
  • Lastly, we did a bit of clothing shopping to revamp our wardrobes for work = $80

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February Highlights:

  • Experiencing Chinese New Year in China – with all the decorations, food, and other traditions.
  • Josh’s company holiday / end of year party – a hell of a good time!
  • Exploring the ancient village of Shawan, near our home in Paynu, because it made us feel like we went back in time into storybook Imperial China.
  • Making New Years dumplings by hand
  • Satisfying our craving for western food in Hong Kong
  • Liz getting offered a great job at a school across the street from our apartment!
  • Visiting a local tea house for the first time (story to come…)

Favorite Moments:

Liz – While I was so excited to go back to Hong Kong, I actually think my favorite moment was making the homemade New Year dumplings!  It was such a cool experience & those are the types of experiences that I enjoy the most about traveling.  It was unique & not many people get to experience making dumplings with a Chinese family.  Plus, they tasted so good!  Overall, it was just such a cool experience to hang out with our new friends and feel a part of the community – definitely memories for a lifetime!

Liz

Josh – Without a doubt, my favorite moment was my company’s holiday / end of year party.  I wasn’t expecting anything like that – it was so much fun.  And it really opened my eyes to some of the cultural differences and made me feel apart of the culture here in China.  We played silly games and laughed and joked – even though I could only understand bits and pieces because most was in Chinese.  Still, it felt so great to be working for a good company.  And I won an award!  If you haven’t read about the holiday party and my award, you definitely should.  Check out the post here.

Dancing for NY Party

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