From China to United States

I was eating hot pot in china with my mom (left) and my cousin (right).

Before tracing the history of my family, it is important to provide the story of my life. 19 years ago, I was born in a western city in Xi’an China, where I formed all the memories of my childhood. I moved to United States when I was twelve years old. I first settled in California and later moved to Georgia for high school.

I was with my grandparents on my father’s side. I spent most of my childhood in their house.

I had a wonderful childhood. With no siblings, I spent most of my childhood in my grandparents’ house with my two cousins — one from each side of the family. I was the youngest among all of them. None of us had any siblings; therefore, we were extremely close to each other. We always spent our weekends in our grandparents’ house, fighting for the remote control, arguing about our favorite character in last night’s TV show or gossiping about our classmates in school. My grandparents would always be stuck in the middle when we were fighting, trying to calm us down. Sometimes they tried to convince me to respect my cousin because he was older or convince my cousin to let me win the arguement because I was younger, but most of the time they would just take out the snacks to distract us from the meaningless fighting. My grandparents were like most of the grandparents in China, devoting all of their time to their grandchildren and passing down the traditions of the family.

My first year in UGA. This picture was taken at the chapel on my 19th birthday.

Moving to America is the most important turning point of my life. Leaving all of my family and moving to a country on the other side of the Earth, I was filed with fear and reluctance. However, life pushed me to keep moving forward. I did not have much time to be pessimistic. School and friends soon replaced my negative attitudes. I learned how to live independently and outside the protection of my grandparents. Life in America is completely different from the life I was familiar with. I started to manage all the issues in my own life. Instead of sharing all my difficulties with my grandparents like I used to do, I learned to keep all the troubles inside my heart and only share the good news with my grandparents because they are still the people I care most about.

This project gives me a chance to know more about the history and heritage of my family and explored the food and eating habitats of my hometown and the historical significance behind these foods. Through interviewing my mother, I had a peek into the marvelous life of my grandparents.