Current Update

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I've stopped updating this website, though it's pages will remain for a while. See "current update" for details.

Visit instead: and

If the above links don't work, try these: (see "use-policy" regarding technical difficulties)

    Home    Current Update    Resources    Photos    Links    Things We've Written   Special Features    Site Map    Real World  ◘ 

This website is no longer being updated!

See for current updates

!!!  IMPORTANT  !!!

January 2015

        As of January 2015, I will no longer update this FrontPage-based website. INSTEAD, I'm working on (for EFL/learning content) and (which will eventually become the new for inspirational and "family" stuff.

        Furthermore, In April 2015 we are leaving Xiamen to work in Hong Kong (after a few months in the US). (See "March" in for details.)

        While will remain on line in it's old form (until I'm ready to switch it to WordPress), I do not know how much longer the resources at will stay on line. In most cases, however, you can remove ".cn" from the web address and find what you are looking for. NONETHELESS, I recommend that you copy your favorite resources from and save them onto your computer so you can keep using them if these pages disappear.


November 2014

        We moved in July to the Da Sheng Li area. Then we had to leave the country because our visas had expired. Back in July, a Xiamen company gave me a contract to help them, but as of mid-November they have not been able to give me an official Invitation Letter so I can apply for a work visa. In Oct and Nov, we were living in our new apartment in Xiamen, and enjoying life as tourists! I'm expecting to start a new job in December--more about that after it happens! And in spite of my more relaxed pace, I've not invested much time in this old website. I am, however, trying to update and move things to


June 2014

        We still do not have a job lined up for the fall, and now it looks like our landlord wants us to move out before mid-July! With a rather heavy load of "class preparation" this summer, and now "lots of packing" to do, I don't expect to have much time to work on this website!


May 2014

        The big news is that we are once again uncertain about our future in China. My department's rules changed (the Economics Department), so they can't rehire their English Instructors. I'm currently looking for a different department to teach in, but most have already hired teachers for next fall. This summer, I'll be teaching for XMU's department of Foreign Languages and Cultures, next spring I hope to be teaching in a US university again (so we can be nearby when our son graduates in early May). In between, and after the spring, we really don't know what to expect! Life in China is once again as uncertain as it is fun and rewarding!


February/March 2014 notice:

        Ever since my classes at Xiamen University resumed, I've been very busy with class prep.  During the Spring Break, I continued to have email and computer problems, which kept me from working on this website. But you will find some photos of our Christmas fun, as well as a few new Wallpapers. I've also added a few new photos (one per page, I think) to these pages: Lake Erie, Kunming, Xiamen, Hong Kong, Xiamen U. I've also added resources for my students, including a guide to the documentary "The Flaw."

       On March 23, I gave a speech to the Xiamen International Fellowship. It is now posted on this website.

       In addition, had to move to a new server, which means added complications. I hope the links and email still work! was not affected (and it is still easier to keep the ".cn" version up to date).




These are our grandkids, and we wish we got more photos of them!

This is the smallest class I've ever taught in China, but with this great background they sure took a nice class photo! See other current students here.

These are recent photos of Vivian, Zoe, and Michael (with his "pepper" circle beard). Many say the beard makes me look "like a professor"; others don't like it because it "makes you look older." Either way, Xiamen is very too hot and humid in the summer, so the beard disappeared over the May 1 holiday. Zoe also got a "permanent home" in early May 2014.

(Above) Vivian took this photo of campus flowers in March, before the rains--flowers bloom all year here in Xiamen!


Below is the family picture we took in August 2013.

(Click on an underlined word to go to that page)                                                              Archive Index: link to an index of past updates

What is new?  I stopped updating this website in January 2015. (see "January 2015" above for details, and visit my newer websites!)  


You know you are too busy when you need this many electronic devices to keep up with your work!

OLD NOTE: If you are new to our website, there's a list of popular features below, as well as popular links on the bottom of every page. Also look at our articles index, site map, and FAQ section (Frequently Asked Questions). There is also a log of old "current updates" on our US-based website (try the "Archive Index" above). We have been "teaching and learning" in China since 2000 (though we spent 2010-11 in Ohio, mainly so that our raised-in-China son Andrew could get used to America before going to college). Michael taught international students in 2011 at the University of Akron (where Andrew now studies), and began teaching "International Economics and Trade" majors at Xiamen University in Sept 2011. Vivian is retired from an administrative career in the US, but still stays busy tutoring and scrapbooking (see below).

NOTE: "Net" troubles are common! After disappeared in Dec 2012, friends helped me get it back, but I never know when it could disappear again; meanwhile, is not easy to upload from China, so it easily gets out of date. Click here for an explanation (and "capital letter fix"). Sorry for the inconvenience!

Popular Features at


A Site Map to help you find things on this 150-page website (you can also use the Google search box)


What we are doing now


Resources for English-learners and their teachers, including many Movie Study Guides. These guides are also slowly being moved to (and edited in the process) my new website:


An index of materials for our current students


Things related to my textbook: Successful Writing for the Real World


Free wallpaper to download (mainly US and China scenery)


Our photo album (Vivian's photo scrapbook is at


Links to help you Learn English on-line


Interactive worksheet and guide concerning common English mistakes and "Better Writing Study Guide"


English Corner tip of the month


Quote of the Week


Information about the history and practice of medicine in China


Articles/stories/poems we have written


Free mp3 music files to download (our CD page)


Our favorite links


Links to resources for Chinese-learners


Information about our experience of raising a dog in China


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Click here for more photos of Xiamen; some are old and some are new! My Xiamen pages also have additional info about this city.


By the way, Vivian also has many photo pages posted on her scrapbook website. They are more elaborate than the simple photo pages on, so they load slowly in China, but you might enjoy seeing her nice pictures. Click here to start your journey: You can also see some of Andrew's artwork at the Deviant Art website.


This was our last "family photo" (Aug 2011) before Vivian & Michael returned to China (after a year in the US). Click here for more family photos and information.

Here is how to e-mail us:

PLEASE write from a computer with anti-virus software!!

And please do not send e-mail greeting cards or attachments without asking first.

Thanks for stopping by. We would love to hear from you (see above!).

Regarding technical difficultites. Uploading our website from China (to both our US and China-based hosts) is often difficult (sometimes resulting in incomplete pages); part of the problem is our location, but another part is because I'm using Microsoft Front Page, which has not been "supported" since 2003! I just don't have time to redesign the site using "more modern" software. Furthermore, e-mail (at least in China) does not always go out or come in as expected. (If you write and don't hear a response, try sending it again after a few days! And remember: the phone is more reliable than e-mail.) Thanks for your patience & understanding.

Click in the boxes below to go to some of our most popular pages. If you get lost, just click "Home."

(There is a "search" box on the home page)


Site map (To search within any page, type "ctrl + f")

Current Update

& how to contact us

Resources  for students & teachers

Links for English Learners

EFL Movie Study Guides

Better Writing Study Guide

Our Students photos

Photo Index

South Carolina & USA photos

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Favorite Links

Things We've Written (articles)

Introduction to China

Life in China photos

Music Page & mp3 downloads

Archive Index

Real World Writing (my textbook)

See our Policy regarding the use of materials available at or

I'm not sure the "counters" on my pages are still working right, but I'll leave them anyway. [My ".cn" website got 8934 page hits in Nov 2012]

Visitors to this page of our ".cn" site since January 2007: