I have taken to calling Vivi the mascot for Lutea Acupuncture & Herbal Medicine, but she insists that she is going to be an acupuncturist when she grows up, so that role is likely to expire soon.
I combined pleasure with business as I dropped into a few traditional herb shops searching for some Chinese herbs that have become difficult to find down in North Carolina. And success! We loaded up on additional ingredients for some new Lutea tinctures.
At a park in Chinatown we stopped to watch a group practicing a set of sword-form tai chi in perfect synchronicity. We were spellbound. Vivi has seen me teach qi gong in the park and she knew immediately what she was watching.
Viv's favorite, and mine too, I think, was our visit to the Buddhist temple on the edge of Chinatown. Vivi and I sat in silent meditation for much longer than I would expect any seven-year-old to do. She especially liked lighting the incense and saying a prayer to the giant buddha "the size of our living room."
For her birthday dinner we went uptown to SushiYou and had a fabulous meal. Her favorite? Eel avocado roll with salmon roe. Do I have an awesome kid or what? The coolest thing about midtown Manhattan is the abundance of luscious cupcake shops which was led us to a perfect way to accompany the Happy Birthday song. And hooray for gluten-free cupcakes! Delicious! The following morning we were up at dawn to take the ferry to the Statue of Liberty and then up to Central Park to take a Chinese-inspired rickshaw ride to the Carousel. The rest of the trip deviated from our China theme, but suffice it to say, we got a taste of China to prepare us for a trip to the real thing as soon as it is in the stars for us. Happy Birthday, my sweet girl!