The Queen of the Shanghai tattoo scene – ZhuoDan Ting. 

Ever since I met my husband, Glenn, he has wanted a 2nd tattoo. He got his first when he was 18 and let’s just say that he’s not overly proud of it. 😁 So shortly after Christmas this year, he decided it was time to act and his 45th birthday in March was the perfect time to pull the trigger. He started researching tattoo artists in Shanghai and planning on designs for his half sleeve tattoo. 

His research, unequivocaly, pointed to ZhouDan Ting, who is known as Ting. She comes from Harbin in Northern China and once she outgrew the Harbin tattoo scene, she moved to Shanghai and set up shop. She is internationally known and has been featured on the CNN travel website and numerous publications around the world. Glenn had found his artist. 

There is a two month wait list to get an appointment with Ting so back in January, Glenn met with her, put down a big downpayment and booked his ink dates. He had two sittings last week that were 4-5 hours each!  The result is incredible.  There are 4 other artists who work in the studio so you may not have to wait as long with one of them. 

Funny story….Glenn has a torn alc and has to have knee surgery to repair it. As it turns out, the surgery was scheduled for the same day as his coveted first ink day. He contacted Ting to see about rescheduling and the closest day was in June. Glenn then called his orthopedic surgeon and he was quickly able to delay the date of his knee surgery by a few days. In Shanghai, it is easier to reschedule a knee surgery than a tattoo appointment with Ting. She is that good! So tomorrow is knee surgery day….positive thoughts are appreciated 😁😁 We’re very lucky to have Glenn’s brother, Darrell, here from Newfoundland for a visit to keep Glenn company while he recovers. 

Our photographer friend, Lisa Browne from http://www.capturingthefabulise.com came to the second sitting and took some amazing photographs. She’s also coming to the final sitting on April 11 so stay tuned for another post. Thank you so much for these photos, Lisa. You’re incredible!  ❤❤

ZhuoDan Ting’s studio is located on the 4th floor at 1 Maoming Nan Lu, right on the corner of Yan’an Lu. The studio has a cool vibe and I was happy to hang out and write away on my laptop while sipping a Goose Island IPA. Check out her website http://www.zhuodanting.tattoo

All the photos below are courtesy of Lisa Browne http://www.capturingthefabulise.com @capturingthefabulise 

 


Happy Birthday to my love!  I am so thankful for the joy this experience is giving you….you SBTE….Sexy Bearded Tattooed Executive. 😂❤

Until next time!

Only joy, only love,

Michelle 

xo

Advertisements

The impact of a kind word

A couple of months ago, I was having a particularly stressful day.  I was ‘wound tight’ and felt like I may snap at any given moment. That’s a gross feeling.  It was taking a lot of conscious postive energy to speak patiently and kindly to my children.  This particular  day I  had to get groceries so the girls and I headed off to our local store, City Shop.  Their behavior at the store was fine but they were acting up a bit and I was feeling hyper sensitive and was trying to get them to be well behaved, respectful human beings….it’s a lot of work 🙂 It was especially a lot of work when my patience was maxed out.  Anyway, as we were shopping we kept bumping into this lovely older gentleman who reminded me of my Dad (who’s an pretty incredible individual). He was observing me interacting with my daughters and then as we were ready to leave, he made a point of stopping me and saying so sincerely “you are doing a great job”.  At that very moment, it was exactly what I needed to hear.  A little bit of encouragement, understanding and support in this world from an outsider who didn’t know shit about me. He could tell I was trying hard and my girls were benefitting from my effort.  I was thankful.

I have a theory…..if you think something nice about someone….you should tell them.  If it comes in your head say it out loud.  Be genuine and never doubt the impact your kind word can make on someone’s day or life.

Until next time!

Only joy, only love,

Michelle

 

The 1st of many posts from the ‘Easy and Wonderful Tea Shop’ Series

China has a beautiful Tea Culture and Glenn and I have certainly embraced it since we moved here. And really, all Newfoundlanders love a drop of tea. We’ve taken our interest to an entirely new level recently as Glenn purchased a ‘tea table’ for the office outside our master bedroom.  We are enjoying the process of making the tea; from scooping the tea leaves to pouring the water at the perfect temperature.  It is very calming.  When I was in Thailand, Glenn and the girls stopped into the Easy and Wonderful tea shop on the 3rd floor of the Hongqiao Pearl City Market and spent some time with the owner, Heidi.  What a lovely woman! They learned a lot, made some purchases and promised to bring me there as soon as I returned.

I met Heidi this week and spent some time in her shop drinking tea and learning some tidbits of information.  My favourite quote that she said was “China makes everything and sends the good stuff to the rest of the world…..except tea. The good tea stays in China”. How lucky are we to get to enjoy and learn about this. When we were ready to leave the store, I felt so completely relaxed…..like I had just had a massage.  The energy was so zen that it wiped all my tension away.  It was a beautiful experience.  One that I’m planning to repeat again and again.  Heidi has agreed to teach myself and Glenn all about Chinese tea and the tea culture after hours in her shop.  I am going to write a whole series of posts that will focus on what we are learning and we’ll post videos, lots of photos and tons of interesting information.

We have been drinking Heidi’s special tea that she developed called “Healthy Tea”.  It is a blend of scented tea, green tea, black tea, white tea and oolong tea in perfect proportions for maximum health benefits according to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).  I also love her black ginger tea and red rose tea.  So many teas…..so little time. 😂😂

Here are some photos from our visit with Heidi this week.

IMG_5611
The shop owner, Heidi, and myself. She is a beautiful person and has over 20 years experience in the tea business.
IMG_5600
Heidi’s tea table has so many pretty dishes and she prepares every cup of tea with such care and precision.
IMG_5602
Tea cups have always been a favourite of mine so this store is right up my alley.  The tins that the tea leaves come in are so pretty too.  IMG_5603IMG_5621IMG_5605

IMG_5604

IMG_5646
This is our new tea table. The whole process from boiling the kettle and getting it to the perfect temperature to popping the top on the tin of tea and trying to eyeball 3g of tea on a hand crafted bamboo scoop.  The whole process is so ritualistic and calming and is quickly becoming a form of meditation for me.
IMG_5642
I think pouring the water is my favourite part. The kettle pours in a perfect, laminar stream.  It’s very beautiful.
IMG_5636
And finally, this is where I sit and write and drink my tea from a gift that Heidi gave me…..a dragon cup because my Chinese horoscope sign is the dragon. I treasure it.

Glenn and I are both excited for this project.  Hope you’ll follow along.

Until next time!

Only joy, only love,

Michelle

Happy International Women’s Day! ❤❤

Happy International Women’s Day to all the beautiful women in my life!  I am blessed to be surrounded by amazing, strong women all around the globe. May you always find peace and happiness in your days. 

I didn’t realize that today was Women’s Day when I booked it but I had the 1st half of my full medical today and spent the morning getting blood work and polked and proded. In the afternoon, I had my first mammogram which wasn’t as bad as I had anticipated 👍😀.  I’m glad to have the process started after scheduling and cancelling it twice already because of conflicts. Women’s Day is a fitting day to check another item off my self care checklist and have a baseline for my overall health. 

Much love to you all and remember to get your paps and mammograms. 😜😘  You’re all incredible women! 

Until next time!

Only joy, only love, 

Michelle 

Our favourite Taiwanese noodle joint

Taiwanese Noodles have become a real comfort food for Glenn and I in Shanghai. This place is about a 10 minute walk from our house on the corner of Hong Mei Lu and Yan’an Lu. It is a small family run business and Glenn and I often go there for breakfast. I never would have imagined eating wontons for breakfast before moving here! But they are so delicious. The wontons are stuffed with pork and mushroom or pork and shepperd’s purse which is a green, weed like vegetable…kind of reminds me of dandelion greens. The wontons are in a super tasty soup broth and you can add spicy chilis in oil to it. Glenn adds two or three heaping spoonfuls of chilis to his while I prefer half a spoonful.


I even made Georgia walk up with me early one Saturday morning for a bowl but she wanted me to to pick her up a croissant on the way to enjoy with her soup. I’m pretty sure she still has her pajamas on but hey, we’re in China. It’s not unusual to see people out for a walk with their pjs on.  😂😂


We often bring friends and business colleagues that are visiting us there for lunch and sometimes grab a couple beers from the convenience store next door to enjoy with the spicy goodness.

img_3280

So on Sunday afternoon, we found ourselves home with no kids as they were at a friend’s house playing and we wanted noodles…..didn’t want to necessarily leave the comfort of our quiet home. So Glenn hopped on his scooter and drove up there. The thing with ordering the noodles for take out is that they can get too soggy if they are sitting in the soup broth too long. So this time, the owner gave Glenn all the fixings to make them at home!  DYI wonton soup and I think tasted even more delicious 😋

Thanks to Glenn for taking all of the photographs below. You can cook me wontons anytime, babe!❤❤

img_3315

img_3316

Come visit us in Shanghai and I promise to introduce you to this deliciacy which, by the way, costs ¥12 a Bowl….less than $5 Canadian dollars for two bowls. 👍👍They do have vegetarian options as well but the pork and mushroom wonton soup and pork and shepherds purse wonton soup are definitely our favorites.

Until next time!

Only joy, only love,

Michelle

xo