Wednesday, October 01, 2014

resources for twenty-somethings: 22.

Yes, I wish I had discovered this song when I was 22. And yes, I know that everyone is currently obsessed with Taylor's new song.

But despite the fact that I'm 24 now—soon to be 25, and the song has been out for some time, and everyone has probably moved on, I think "22" is still relevant.

Every time I hear it, I start singing and begin a little dance party wherever I am. This song makes me feel better. Happy. Vibrant. Young. I'm instantly transported to my earlier twenty-something days, where I'm dancing with new friends in the parking lot of my university residence late at night, wearing pyjamas that kind of pass for shorts (who was I kidding?), drinking a slushie (I think some of you would call it a slurpee?).

So, press play, sing along, and dance it out. Remember days that were less stressful, although you didn't know it at the time. Or revel in the nights that precede days that are spent being less stressed, although you don't know it yet.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

plans for the october break.

Today is the first day of a week-long vacation. I decided it'll be all about getting things done and relaxing, so the above list was made. (When I asked Tony what he wanted to do this week, he said, "Watch West Wing." Done. And that's why I'm marrying him.)

It's hanging on the door of one of our kitchen cupboards. I'll be crossing things off and report back at the end of the week.

Fun things that we'll probably do but I don't care if they happen this week so they didn't make the list: Art District, Wudaoying Hutong.

Things that I'll do but they're boring so they didn't make the list: Order David's Tea, get waxed, make a list of things for Alanna to bring me back from Lush in Canada, banking.

(Since I made the list yesterday, I've already watched Grey's, Parenthood, and Scandal. So happy the surgeons, Bravermans, and gladiators are back.)

P.S. Highlights from my first October holiday in Beijing.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

I predict that this will be one of my favourite photos from my time living in Beijing.

It has hot pot, Coco, colourful flags, a woman wearing Mickey Mouse unironically. I'm laughing and my guy is on the other side of the camera. Yup, a contender for favourite for sure.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

a trip to the plant market.

I had to do a quick search to see if I had ever blogged about the plant market and I was surprised to see that I hadn't. But I guess I shouldn't be that surprised; I don't think I've been to the plant market since my first year in Beijing. At least, not to buy plants. (I bought Goldfish there! (Never mind, I just realized that was also during my first year.) Who is still alive, KNOCK ON WOOD! And oh man, I just got all sentimental because looking at the photo here, I realize he's actually gotten a lot bigger since then.)

Ok, tangent over. Ahem. 

ANYWAY. We had our last 2 or 3 plants die over the summer while we were in Canada. (One friend who shall remain nameless—Alanna!—insists that they were dead before we put them in the hallway for the ayis to take care of, but I insist that at least one of them was still alive.) So after much convincing that we needed more plants because they'll make our air healthier/produce oxygen and they're beautiful, Tony and I walked to the plant market by Lady Street this weekend. 

And like always, I was in heaven.

I'm convinced you can breathe easier as soon as you walk into the building. I mean, of course you probably can. It's a building filled with oxygen makers. 

Look at the colours here!

So many succulents. Blogland, are you drooling?

I love looking at all the different varieties of plants that I have no idea how to not kill. 

The plant market has more than just plants. Yup. Turtles and rabbits and fish, oh my. Plus crabs and mice and birds and I don't remember what else.

We ended up buying 4 plants—two Snake Plants and two plants that I don't know the name of. We put 3 in the living room and one in the bedroom. We were supposed to put two in the bedroom but Tony was all, Um. No one puts plants in the bedroom. I gave him a look like, Are you crazy? And he said, They don't make oxygen at night! And again, I'm like, Are you crazy? But I googled it. And it turns out he's right. Except for Snake Plants! Apparently, Snake Plants convert CO2 into oxygen at night!  So that means we're both kind of right, right?!

I'm going back to the plant market soon. Any suggestions for plants that improve air quality, are beautiful, and are hard to kill?

Monday, September 22, 2014

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

thank you, david's tea!

This is probably full of Caramel Corn tea. Mmm.

You guys, I had a blog post pretty much written in my mind for today, but then I came home to an email that made me SO happy. Like, super-hooray-fist-pumping happy! Customer service is not dead!

Let me say it again: CUSTOMER SERVICE IS NOT DEAD!

Okay. Details. The other day, I sent an email to David's Tea Customer Service team, via a form on their website:


I bought the Carnival Collection of teas this summer and fell in love with the flavour "Caramel Corn." I see that it isn't available online to purchase by itself, but the other flavours from the collection are. So, my first question is, why isn't it? Second: Could it be possible? And third, if not, can you recommend any teas that would taste similar? I'm not able to visit a David's Tea store, because I'm living abroad, but I have someone who will ship tea to me. Please help a David's Tea-loving expat out! 

Thank you, 

And then I forgot I had sent it. Until right now, when I read this email in my inbox:

Hi Amanda,

Thank you so much for reaching out to us.

We no longer have the caramel corn tea available online because we have sold out of it unfortunately. Since it's only around for a limited time, once we sold out of it that was all we had unfortunately. For a similar taste you could always mix these 2 teas together though: 


We are also performing a tea consolidation from all the stores soon, so if we do happen to get more in from them, we'll make sure to post this tea online in the 'web special' section.

I hope this helps but if you have any other questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact us, we are more than happy to help.

Kind regards,

And that's when I literally almost yelled hooray! and fist-pumped in my empty apartment. Because even though I can't buy my beloved Caramel Corn tea, I got an actual reply from an actual person, and not just an automated reply from a robot!

Thank you, David's Tea, for restoring my faith in customer service. You made my day.
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