A busy autumn in Shanghai!

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December 10th 2011
Published: December 10th 2011
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Good evening dear readers!

I am writing to you from a very chilly Shanghai, where we have seen temperatures drop to below freezing for the past few days. Apparently, they are going back up to about 11 degrees tomorrow, so we are not really sure whether we are coming or going! We have been shopping today for our snow clothes as we are preparing to head for the north of China during our Christmas break, where we will be experiencing temps of possibly -30 degrees!! We are heading up there on Boxing Day for just a few days.

Apologies as ever for the long break. Time here flies so quickly as we have so much to fill our lives. This term has seen Sophie join Year 5....she is becoming a rather confident young lady who has now forged friendships with a lovely group of girls and is thoroughly enjoyed having a Southampton supporter for a teacher (not sure if Daddy enjoys it more!). She went on a 3 day residential trip earlier in the term doing outward bound type things and loved it! She is playing the saxophone and having private lessons now, as well as continuing with her swimming, and is now starting basketball on a Sunday lunchtime!

As for our 'little' boy, William, he is growing so fast I have to keep lengthening his trousers! He is almost as tall as Sophie and we cannot feed him fast enough! He is loving his Kiwi rugby-mad teacher, and starts rugby club after Christmas. He is now playing the viola, swims regularly and is also starting basketball tomorrow.

Both children have been loving the school 'Lao Zi' choir and this festive season has seen them extremely busy. In October, they sung with the Hong Kong Male Welsh Voice Choir which was amazing. Ian joined the adult choir also and so he joined them too. During the festive season, the school choir has bookings from all the big hotels in Shanghai to sing at their Christmas tree lighting ceremonies and other such events....they have been to the Ritz Carlton, Grand Hyatt, 3 on the Bund and tomorrow will be at the Shangri-La. At these events, they sing and are then treated to a wonderful spread of 5* food in a luxurious room. They love it, and we are looking forward to tomorrow where we will be having a tradition Christmas afternoon tea while the children sing...a perfect way to start the Christmas season.

Ian has been busy starting his English degree and is currently doing a seminar online examining Greek Classics which has me totally perplexed! He is very happy and working hard.

I decided to step back from being a year group Coordinator this year so that I could come home at a decent time to be with the children. Unfortunately, I am not able to keep totally quiet and put my hand up to direct the Christmas play! It has been an exhausting few weeks but our production of 'When Sasha got sucked up the chimney' ended with 3 performances to children and parents, with rave reviews....some people even telling me it was the best show they had seen at Dulwich! I have to say it was amazing watching 110 of the 8 and 9 year olds we teach on stage singing and dancing in time...they were brilliant!

In amongst all this, we have been ferrying both children to numerous play dates and parties and the like...I think they have a better social life than us!

I am going to
Sophie winning the coloured saxophoneSophie winning the coloured saxophoneSophie winning the coloured saxophone

In Music class, the person who has worked the hardest gets the coloured instrument for the week. We were so proud when Sophie got it!
try and add a few photos for now and I promise to write another blog during the break as we are officially on Christmas hols now - hurray!

Additional photos below
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William at one his numerous partiesWilliam at one his numerous parties
William at one his numerous parties

It was a FIFA World Cup party...the children were either Argentina or Spain and every child came home with the kit and a trophy!!

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