Archive | October 2012

Pear Coffee


Took the family up to a restaurant in the Donghai area for the double 10 holiday(雙十節).  Pear Coffee.  I had previously been here to celebrate a friend’s birthday with ice cream.  Delicious ice cream, and not too bad entrees: $250-$800 NT.  Most were full course meals – soup, salad, drink and dessert.  You could also order a la cart items.  Not a whole lot for my husband to eat however – tuna on salad or fillet of sea bass.  The draw of this restaurant is of course the rocks.  The kids LOVED playing in them.  And my husband and I could eat dinner in relative peace, have a conversation for once! 




The only draw back –

a fine white dust covering the kids.  There was however a bucket of water to rinse off in, and spacious restrooms.  It was bath time anyway when we got home.

Choose to sit outside if you want close supervision of your kids.  Most tables are inside, curving around the landscaping.

There are no sand toys, so share with another patron or bring your own.

Pear Coffee is located near Donghai University just off Xitun Rd.  See Compass for details.


Chalkboard paint – in Taiwan!

I’m totally stoked – I finally tracked down some unsanded tile grout and was able to make chalkboard paint.  Here’s the elusive info:

After exhaustively searching every 五金 (hardware/dollar store) in town, I finally checked the craft store, and sure enough – unsanded tile grout.  It was in the section for tile projects (unsurprisingly), you could also choose sanded or not and various colors. 

So simple, but it’s taken me at least 6 mo. to find this.  Anyway, followed the directions on Martha Stewart above and presto!  Chalkboard paint on my refridge.  I’m drooling over all the possibilities now 🙂

A couple thoughts on the whole project:

1.  Read through the comments on MS – many people had clumpy paint problems.  (as did I)  Either add your grout to a little water before mixing it in the paint, or sift it in slowly.  Either way, after sitting for a day, it will have dissolved in nicely.

2.  Here’s what I did:

enlisted slave labor to clean my surface






traced my design using a projector






filled in my contrasting border color






mixed my paint using acrylic or water based black matte paint (glossy is fine, but different looking)  Use 1 c. paint to 2 TB tile grout.

I did a few coats because I didn’t want holes when I sanded the surface at the end.  Make sure to sand between coats or any bumps will stay where they are.





one thing I would do differently next time would be to do the finer border design in regular paint, not the chalkboard paint.  It looks a bit chunky to me.  I still love it!  Go out and find your tile grout today 🙂













Playing with wood

Hey I’m still alive – just barely though.  My 婆婆 came to help us out for a month while my ribs healed.  Which meant that I got a lot of rest, but nothing done 🙂  I thought up a zillion projects, attempted to do some, and then realised – I can’t do that!  Ribs hurt.  Grr…

Here’s one I’ve thought about a while, and actually completed a month before.  I know, there are a million of these tutorials online, but none for Taiwan… so there 🙂  Here’s what you need:

1.  old pallet boards (I found mine lying along a paddy road behind some warehouses, and NO, they were not in use, just dumped.  I helped myself.)

2.  remove the rusty old nails – carefully.  I found it difficult to remove all of them because they were sunk into the wood.  So, I just nailed them down in the back.  Not the best idea, but time efficient.

3.  paint if you want another color besides “weathered”

4.  this is where my hack comes in… my printer broke, and I haven’t replaced it yet.  So I chose a font I liked, wrote out the phrase I wanted in my word document, enlarged it until it fit the size I wanted on the board, and traced it carefully with a felt tipped pen.

5.  traced over my paper with a ball point pen onto my board -FIRMLY, so the outline of the letters would be impressed onto the soft wood.

6.  painted the outlined letters with a small flat edged brush in my color of choice.