Archive for July 27, 2013



Well, our family has been here almost a year this time around and that means it’s time to renew our visas.  It’s a bit more complicated when you are a family with kids than it was as a single person.  It’s also more complicated when the rules/regulations are in the process of changing.  Here is a link to the new (revised) law as of July 1.
How the changes apply to your situation…there’s no link for that.  🙂  Most blogs I’ve read say it mostly means larger penalties for breaking visa rules and it can affect where you have to go to renew your visa/resident permit.  Here’s a link to an article about the new visa types:
Anyway, our family has been busy taking care of our visa so there may not be as many updates/added info here for a few days.

Save some money!


If you haven’t tried group purchasing (团购 tuan gou) you might be missing out!  The concept is similar to groupon, living social, and other similar services in the US.  There are some good deals for small groups but there are REALLY good deals for eating out with large groups.
You can also find discounts on things like massages, KTV, hotels, beverage stands, travel, and so on.  Below I’ve linked to two different group purchasing websites, but I’m sure there are more.  If you know of others link to them in the forum or in the comments below.
If you can’t read Chinese, get a local friend to help you register for an account and set up your preferences for area of town, kind of cuisine, etc.
Also comment or share in the forum if you see a particularly good deal you think others should know about!

Why we created this site


I created this site mostly because I love Hohhot.  This was the first city I lived in as a “grown-up” coming here to study Chinese right after graduating from college. (2002)  This is the city where I met my husband (who, for the record,  is also American).  (2006)This will be the city that my girls will know as home.  (present day)
I created this site also because there doesn’t seem to be much cohesion or camaraderie amongst the foreigners here and I hope this site can help with that.
I also mostly want us to have a place to learn from each other about how to live more efficiently in this city we call home.

Welcome to our online community!


If you knew the extent of the absence of my technical knowledge, you would think I was crazy for deciding to do this website in the first place.  However, here we are!  I hope this page can be a resource for foreigners hoping to connect with other foreigners and a simple forum for those pressing questions like, “where can I buy…”  or “what’s the deal with….”
Until we get a proper forum up, just post any questions or comments as  a comment and we (and hopefully our readers!) will respond.

Enjoy our site and enjoy your time in Hohhot!

Just a few ground rules:
Posts with profanity will be deleted.
We all experience differing degrees of culture shock/culture stress at different points of our stay here and we need safe environments for expressing ourselves.  However, any post that we deem to be derogatory to this country or to Chinese people will be deleted.
Any post with content that is sexually explicit or of an adult nature will be deleted.

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Thanks for your cooperation and understanding.