This was taken in our living room in Redlands, California. I am about 2 years old or so.
The Guan Yin in the background is the one I wrote about in the final chapter of The Girl from Purple Mountain, a gift from Ye-ye and Nai-nai.
This was a rare photo of my brother and me with both sets of grandparents. We were attending somebody’s wedding in Redlands, California, when this picture was taken.
This was taken outside our house in N.J. It was the first time my brother and I had seen snow.
I think I was 7 or 8 in this picture with my mother and brother. We were attending a political rally in Chinatown in New York City. My father took the picture.
This picture was taken on our front lawn in South Dakota shortly after we first moved there. I am twelve in this photo.
I think I was in eighth grade when we took this photo in front of our house in S.D. Yes, that’s my brother’s three-wheeler, as they were called in the day. My dog, Betty, is also on the three-wheeler.
My mother arranged this photo and jumped in at the last moment. Our dogs, Bert and Betty, are in the picture as are our goats, Erma Bombeck and Madeleine L’Engle. (My mother let me name the goats.) The tower in the background was for the goats to jump on. The alfalfa for the Holsteins is under the tarp.
This was my mother’s photography studio, which she named Seven Oaks Studio for good luck. She designed and sewed the awnings, which were yellow, and I helped paint the building, which is white and brown.
My mother arranged this portrait in her studio. She had to jump in at the last minute which is why she’s in the corner.
My mother took this picture of my brother and me in S.D. My brother is 17 and still lording it over me that he has overtaken me in height. (In fact, he outgrew me when he was 14, but he still liked to gloat 3 years later.)
All photos are the property of May-lee Chai and cannot be reproduced elsewhere without my permission.