Archive for the Life in Macau Category

Travel Theme: Gaudy- Lunar New Year Edition

Posted in Life in Macau, Life in Singapore, Travel Asia with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 11, 2013 by Yarn Over New York

Gong Xi Fa Cai

Here is a collection of my favorite Chinese New Year decorations from around Asia.  Lots of gold, lots of shiny.  This post is my contribution to Where’s My Backpack’s Weekly Travel Theme.

2011- Year of the Rabbit

Luminous child holding a branch dripping with money at Senado Square in Macau

A Chinese Opera New Year Pink Luminous Bunny in Macau

Fake blossoms and lots of lanterns in Macau

2012- Year of the Dragon

Shopping in Singapore

A Luminous Dragon at Resorts World Sentosa

Golden Dragon at Suntec City Mall

2013- Year of the Snake

Lion Puppet with Firecracker Tongue at the Ang Mo Kio Market in Singapore

Nothing Says Happy New Year Like a Sparkly Multicolor Flower Tree Light


Read more about my first Chinese New Year experience here and here.




A Macau Chinglish Farewell

Posted in Life in Macau with tags , , , , on May 23, 2011 by Yarn Over New York


My Apartment in Macau

Posted in Life in Macau, Painting with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 21, 2011 by Yarn Over New York

When I moved from Belgium to Macau about a year ago, I found an awesome little 2-bedroom apartment in the historic area of Taipa.  The apartment fit all of my requirements: I could walk to work, it was not in a high-rise, I could easily walk to stores, restaurants and bars, and most of all it was in a neighborhood with some personality.

The area where I live is the oldest populated part of Taipa (called Old Taipa Village), whereas the rest of the island was pretty much a jungle until about 10 years ago.)  In recent years, the trees have been cleared out of the majority of Taipa and many many new high-rise apartment buildings have been added.  Though I enjoy the conveniences this kind of development creates (groceries stores, home supply stores, bars and restaurants), I wanted to live in a location with more of a history and a more unique feeling.

A view of the rest of Taipa

(Chicken coop high-rise = bad)

As you can see from the photos below, I have large windows with a view of trees!  It feels like I live in the woods ever though I am in the middle of the city.

Here is a before photo

The apartment is fully furnished (YAY!) with really ugly non-color-coordinating cheap furniture (BOO!), so I decided to cover EVERYTHING with orange fabric.  It is much better this way, don’t you think?

And here is the finished product

I also decided to paint the walls in my bedroom and the main living/dining area.  The kitchen and bathroom are both tiled, so no need to paint in there.  I had left the second bedroom alone with plans to tackle it in the future.  Now my roommate Nia has painted it for herself.

I went with an orange called “Carotine,” a dark green called “Kelly Green” and a light green called “Celery Stalk” for the living room.

For the bedroom, I chose a yellow called “Ripe Banana” and a pink called “Strawberry Crush.”  It’s like a smoothie in there!

I went to several home goods stores looking for various colorful (but mostly orange) accessories for the apartment.

My Guardian Lion

I set up a nice relaxing area on my bedroom windowseat.  It is a perfect little reading corner.

I covered the wardrobes with my photos.

My water cooler.

See more photos of my Macau apartment here.

You Could Lose an Eye Doing That- Chinese New Year part 2

Posted in Life in Macau with tags , , , , , , , on April 17, 2011 by Yarn Over New York

I grew up in the USA.  My experience with fireworks up until now was watching them being shot off from a barge over a large body of water.  I had played with sparklers and knew people who had occasionally purchased small fireworks in one of the few states where they are legally sold.  None of that prepared me for the awesome and frightening spectacle that is fireworks in Macau for Chinese New Year.

Fireworks are legal here.  Totally legal.  Okay, there is a small amount of regulation and designated areas for selling and firing but that’s it.

Follow arrow for fun!

Conveniently located just off the main road

Fun for all ages!

Rock n Roll

I had a wonderful time visiting the fireworks area twice and watching from the roof of Ro’s building.  The Macau fireworks are loud, proud and above all SAFE!

(Watch for the fireman at the end)

Really smart

See more photos of Chinese New Year in Macau here.

Visit part one of my CNY blog here.

Kung Hei Fat Choi- Happy Chinese New Year part 1

Posted in Life in Macau with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 22, 2011 by Yarn Over New York

One of the coolest parts of living in Macau would have to be the two-week celebration that is Chinese Lunar New Year.  The holiday is complicated with different days being dedicated to different persons or activities.  One celebration with friends, one celebration with family, one to honor your ancestors, etc.  Good luck and prosperity are common themes for decorations and gifts.  (I encourage to read the wikipedia article I linked to above, it pretty thoroughly explains the holiday better than I can.)


Starting in mid-January, rabbits began to appear throughout Macau

It's the Year of the Rabbit


Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit

Every building, every store, every corner and every home becomes redder, happier and covered in MONEY!

Happy New Year at the City of Dreams







This is the little tree is where you pin your Red Envelopes (which contain MONEY)

OMG, It's a shiny rabbit holding money!

I truly enjoyed the decorations throughout the city and decorated my apartment as well.


2 Tigers and a Rabbit (last year was Year of the Tiger)


It wouldn't be Asian without Hello Kitty

Another great tradition is the Lion Dance.  There was a ceremony onstage at Dragone with 3 Lions, drumming, dancing and the very dramatic offering of lettuce (for the rabbit).  There was also a blessing in the lobby with incense and burning paper.


The Blessing table in the lobby



Dancing Lion


The highlight of the event, for me, was a bad mix of some ceremonial paper burning and the South China wind.


Stay tuned for “You Could Lose an Eye Doing That (Or Chinese New Year part 2)”.

See more photos of Chinese New Year here.


Meet Tourosol!

Posted in Arts and Crafts, Crochet and Knit, Life in Macau with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 6, 2011 by Yarn Over New York

The Bull

Tourosol- A Bull with a Sunflower

Recently, a lady commissioned me to crochet a bull holding a sunflower for her upcoming wedding anniversary.  The bull is based on a character in her husband’s favorite childhood cartoon.  She couldn’t tell me the name of the show or the character, but gave me the photo below.  She wanted the bull to hold a sunflower (her favorite flower).


No name, only photo . . . Let the creativity begin.

With nothing else to go on, I selected some yarn and drew up a sketch.  She liked the sketch and we agreed on a price and deadline.


My Sketch of Tourosol

It took me about a week to crochet him up and assemble him.  Most of the design was pretty easy, however, I did struggle with the clogs and have to remake them a few times before they turned out right.  I named him “Tourosol” which combines the Portuguese words for bull and sunflower.  I used a red chinese lantern as the flowerpot because their anniversary falls just a few days after Lunar New Year.


Tourosol profile

The Rest

Life in Macau is going well.  New Year festivities are in full swing.  (Expect a post in a few days with lots of decoration and firework photos.)  I am crafting up a storm.  Other than the bull, I have made an elephant, some hats and I just finished my first KNIT scarf.


The elephant (also with New Year lantern)

Slouch Hat

Shell hat for Jessica

My first knit project is complete!

I am feeling really inspired to write, so keep an eye out  for most posts soon.  There is much to show and tell.

I’m Back in Macau

Posted in Asian Winter Odyssey 2010-11, Life in Macau, Travel Asia with tags , , , , , , , , on January 20, 2011 by Yarn Over New York

Hey everyone.  I have made it safely back to Macau after my 2.5 months of traveling.   I am trying to get settled and set up a routine for myself.  It seems I have an epic amount of laundry to do…


CAUTION: I'm Back!!

More posting soon.  Please check back often to follow my recent Asian Winter Odyssey (including bonus North American side trip).  You can always check my flickr site for photos as I add them.