十几年前我回国在上海一般就住一个如家或锦江之星，挑一个离地铁比较近的酒店，这样上班办事都比较方便。那时候没有小孩，旅馆主要就是睡个觉，干净清爽就可以了。快进几年，有了两个小孩，住的酒店要求也稍有提高。托酒店信用卡促销的福，攒了些点数或是free nights, 我也升级了住的旅馆。在上海常住的旅馆有，徐家汇的万丽酒店（courtyard Shanghai xujiahui), 她家所在的楼叫西藏大厦，出租车司机如不清楚可提这个名字。另一家是浦东的喜来登福朋酒店（four points by Sheraton, Shanghai pudong, 又叫由由酒店，楼的名字），注意她家旁边有喜来登酒店（Sheraton Shanghai pudong, 5 star vs four points 4 star), 不要搞错。这两家的房间起价大概是800人民币左右。
最近一次有幸住了回陆家嘴的柏悦酒店（park hyatt），这个标价是大概300多美金，我用的是hyatt卡的开卡free nights. 看了下用chase ultimate rewards points 的话是2万点一晚。小孩很喜欢，因为有一些没见过的features. 我的头被淋浴喷头砸了一下。Uncle Major 进大观园。:-)
在美国最近住Hampton inn 比较多。还是觉得Hampton inn 接地气一些。这家Hilton 系列的中档酒店设计简单，实用，且包早餐。一般我这样小兵级别的人出差就住它家。对有小孩的家庭包早餐是一个挺有用的feature. Other hotels have similar feature include Hilton garden inn, holiday inn express and clarion. Last but not least, hhonors is the Hilton hotels reward program. Hampton inn usually costs 20,000 points (roughly $100).
Last but not least, tips. I know it’s a sensitive topic, but typically I gave $2 tip for the maid at Hampton (or equivalent hotels), put the note stating “for the maid” on the top of the bill so there is no confusion. Interestingly, in China I noticed the tipping culture is popular in Shanghai foreign brand hotels (4 star or above), I do give tips for people who handle my luggages (roughly $1 for a piece, which is similar to US standard). But in less developed areas, there is no such things as tip. People will laugh it off and give back the money.
上面这个照片是我在最近一次的去中国的航班上照的。来美国有快二十年，坐过很多次飞跃太平洋的航班，坐的最多可能是美联航的航班。从芝加哥到上海的直航也就13，14个小时，加上从圣村到芝城的一个小时再加上几个小时的lay over, 总共的旅行时间比我当年从宁波到武汉上学的时间（大概是37，38小时，包括两次中转的时间）还短些。当然还比当年的火车舒服些。飞机坐多了，难免会有这样那样的事。最吓人的一回是2004年夏天从旧金山走，说是飞机起飞时发现翅膀发动机有火花。飞机在海上把满箱的油放掉后返航。当时乘务员给大家出了一个题，多少油，多少钱一加仑航空油。我算了一下大概是30多万美元。随着航空公司这两年越来越追求利润，不知道现在还会不会这样做？
Serenity has 2 birthday party invitation today. Because we already agreed going to the first one, we cannot back out although serenity told us she wanted going to the second. She even says she likes gymnastics now. When did that happen? Last I recall I had to drag her to the gymnastics class, not literally, but her fear on the beam was real.
Things change as time goes though. That fear on gymnastics was 2 years ago. She may have overcome this now. Another example is I saw from kids math test. I volunteered at this program called math facts scholars. One thing I noticed, is 1st grade kid usually does the addition/ subtraction more proficient than kindtergardeners. It’s not across board, as I saw some K kids do very well too. But I can sense as kids progress in school, they just feel more confident on math and numbers. Again timing is important. Sometimes I was thinking is it worth to make K kids struggle while if we wait 6 month or 1 year, she/he will do it with ease? How about learning piano? Or ice skate? Or swim? I am just thinking out loud.
To be precise, it’s Spoede Elementary, about 5 mins drive from my condo. When I bought the condo 10 years ago, I was single and had no kids. But I knew Ladue is a good school district. That’s one reason I bought condo here. If things does not work out, I can rent out the condo to someone else who will like this location. Back to school.
We met the school principle, the 4 kindergarten teachers, one counselor, and one idea lab teacher (outside classroom?), a lot of parents from diverse background. The teachers gave a lot tips about transition kids to kindergarten, and I like what the principle said at last: we will treat your kids like our own. That is indeed what I felt at some of the school Yoyo already attended. And this is largely true in the post Newtown world. I recall some of the teachers lost lives trying to save the kids. Maybe a bit harsh but I think we need to think about gun violence and do something about it.
Back to school, we are really excited to see Serenity growing up, and we also like the ROCKS principle (Respect, Ownership, Cooperation, Kindness and Safety) of the school.
We happened to stop by Serenity’s “old school” today, as we were playing at the millennium park this afternoon. Her “old school” was right next to the park. As we saw some kids were playing soccer there, Serenity walked over and took a look. The door (fence) of big playground (back playground) was open, and she just walked in. I know I know, I’ve been in the US for almost 18 years and legally speaking this is trespassing. In the US, private property is respected. But she is just a 5 year old kid. I just don’t want to hurt her feeling and say “no”. And in about 5 to 10 minutes, she seems found all the good memories. Really words can not describe her feelings there: it’s just right at home, she had been there for 1.5 years until last Nov. Here are some of the pictures.
sawyer and serenity going for special walk. serenity pick leaves. sawyer picked up egg and put in nest. sawyer pet chick to sleep. serenity bake some cookies.
serenity is happy. sawyer is happy. sawyer goes for medium one, serenity feeds the chick. Sawyer and serenity go to the park. goes to school in the morning.
plays ring around the rosie. there is one teacher her name is miss rachel. now it’s christmas, now serenity and sawyer at home opening the presents. serenity
got teddy bear, sawyer got tennis shoes. now serenity go meet princess (aurora sleeping beauty), sawyer go meets ninja turtle. sawyer serenity save their
presents. the end.
to be continued…
it’s 3 little bears. once upon a time, there lived 3 little bears, there is a daddy bear, mommy bear, and baby bear. bear are out side for a walk. the end.
Charmin and Bounty at Target
$4.50 off regular price for 30 double rolls, $5 eGiftcard when one buy 2 (can mix and match). Here is the link to get to Charmin. Use Target Redcard to get 5% off and free shipping.
Huggies Snug and Dry Plus at Costco
$6 off large box (was $38.99 for size 3), here is the link to size 3. I ordered one box a week ago, and it arrived today. So far it seems work for my younger daughter. I recall we used mostly this diaper from Costco for our elder daughter. This promotion runs till Jan 25. Limit 2 boxes per order. Costco offers free shipping for this.
Baby Sophia is almost 5 months old, and she is on size 3 diaper (16 to 28 lbs). I recall she was born at 7 lbs and 3 oz, quickly reach 10 lbs which also outgrew new born size diaper. Similar thing happened to size 1 diaper, she reached 14 lbs at 2 month mark, and now we have both new born and size 1 surplus diapers
Things slowed a bit since 2 month, she was about 15.5 lbs at 4 month checkup. Nonetheless we used all size 2 diapers (12 to 18 lbs), and started size 3 (16 to 28 lbs).
As to diaper brands and type, we used huggies natural new born, pampers swaddler new born, huggies snug and dry size 1, a store brand size 1, huggies little smuggler size 2, and pampers swaddler size 3.
Thinking switch to huggies snug and dry size 3 in the future, that’s what our elder daughter had most of time, and it sells for $39 per 210 at Costco. A bit cheaper than pampers swaddler.
Saw this discussion at mittbbs.com (发信人: waluzz78 (哇鲁庄镇), 信区: Parenting). I think I agree.
不切合实际了，只好人他们学习美国人的方式，自己也只好step out of the comfort
When we were expecting the second baby, we vaguely recall the baby quickly grew out of the “new born” size diaper, so we did not stock up this time. When the baby came home with us, we already had a box of 88 pieces of Huggies natural, and being a person like to stock up things, I bought two 88 pieces Pampers new born. In about a month, our baby grew to 10 lbs, which is the upper limit of new born, and we still had about 40 pieces left.
Now baby is about 2 months old, and approaching 14 lbs (13 lbs 6 oz as of 2 month check-up), we still have a box of 92 pieces unopened. We bought a box (192 pieces) of Huggies little snugglers size 1 from Sams’ club before the baby was born. And a friend brought in 92 pieces Huggies, another friend gave us the “diaper cake” which probably had 50 pieces.
So here is our mistake again: stocked up too much new born and size 1 diapers. The good thing is we can always give it to friends who are expecting new baby