Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Coming to America

A few more family photos I scanned while I was in California. I like this batch because they trace my parents' journey to -- and my family's beginnings in -- the United States.

Mom and Dad as university students

My Mom and Dad met when they were both architecture students at National Cheng Kung University (國立成功大學) in Tainan, Taiwan.

Mom's awesome red jacket

Behold at my Mom's awesome red jacket!

Dad before leaving for the US

In 1978, my Dad, his cordovan bag and that stick he was carrying (I need to ask him what that was) moved to the United States to go to grad school at UC Berkeley. Here he is at Taipei Songshan Airport with one of my uncles, my grandma and one of my aunts (my Dad has four siblings).

Mom's engagement party

For a year, my Mom and Dad had a long distance relationship, with my Mom in Taiwan and my Dad in California. Thirty years later, Ron and I would also have a LDR -- but he was the one in Taiwan and I was in NYC. Before my Mom moved to the US to join my Dad, the two of them got engaged remotely. I love the dresses my Mom and my aunt are wearing (I have my Mom's dress... it's hanging in my home office) and my grandmother's qipao.


The two of them got married in San Jose by a judge who had the COOLEST CLOCK IN THE WORLD. Look at that clock! Oh my goodness!

Mom and Dad's wedding portrait, 1979

My Mom and Dad had a wedding reception a little bit later at UC Berkeley. My uncle Daniel took their wedding photos.

Mom and Dad's first car

They bought a car...

Mom in my parents' first apartment

... and rented an apartment...

My family's first house

... but then they got a surprise -- me! -- so they bought a house.

Mom pregnant with me

... my Mom made one beautiful pregnant lady.


My Mom had me -- the first person in my family born in the United States -- and then a year later, my brother came along.

Double trouble

Doesn't my Dad look shell-shocked?

Family portrait

And that's how the Shu family ended up in America... and that most American of institutions, the Olan Mills family portrait! Now I have family members in the US, Canada, Taiwan, Singapore, China and England. And I'm pretty sure some of my relatives are from Mars. We're truly an international -- and intergalatic -- family!


  1. came across Seamstress Stories, this is such a nice post and your effort to also document your parents' photos!wow..romantic and lovely story=)
    i love keeping my mom's clothes too so my grandma's.

  2. I loved seeing the photographic account of your family's life journey! Some of the photos are stunning and I really like the first image of the decorated photo album with the leaves from the photo. =3