Today's post will be in two parts, again. I have been able to get so many photos that I want to share and log for Chaning for when she gets older. Today, we visited a village on the outskirts of the city here in Guangzhou. It was definitely one of my favorite outings that I have taken in both trips to China so far. We actually got to see how the farmers live. We were able to walk through their streets and then took a boat across the water to tour through their farms. It was literally a sea of banana trees. On the weekends, city people come there to walk in the fields and purchase their fresh fruit and veggies right off the trees of off the ground.
We encountered two ladies making silk flowers/butterflies. They would not let us purchase their items but did give Joan and Mom one a piece as long as they agreed to take their business card??? It took one girl two hours just to make the one rose Joan received.
Chaning did really well today. On our short, across the river, trip one lady kept motioning that Chaning needed to take her fingers out of her mouth and that she was too old to do that. Well, I just quit making eye contact with her as she continued to get louder about it. Joan, of course, cracked us up by looking at the lady and saying to us, "Who, made her the rule maker?" or something to that effect. There is never a dull moment with that lady around. We have really enjoyed this trip and have done a lot.
Tomorrow will be the dreaded medical and we have 10 families in our group that will need the exams tomorrow..uggh! We are probably looking at a 4 to 5 hour visit. I have been told that it is air conditioned.
Day 11 - Again, the Kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. Matthew 13:45 - I have found my five fine pearls here on earth and I give thank to Him!
Today was not as fast paced as I thought it would be. The two tours that we went on were a little too hot and too many steps with a little one. Some of us were dropped off to shop and Chaning and myself came back to the room for her to finish out her nap. We later went to Pizza Hut for lunch and did a little shopping in the afternoon. Most of the clothes I brought for her are too big and the shoes are way too large. We found her a couple of outfits walking the streets tonight but no luck on sandals. I will take her across the street to a mall tomorrow afternoon and bite the bullet and pay what I would in the states for a pair of sandals. Tonight, I took her out of her stroller to try on some shoes and her shorts literally fell down to her ankles. She just laughed. She started the day off a little quiet but ended it with a bang. She speaks very good Mandarin and is starting to understand most of what I say to her. We use a lot of hand gestures.
Tomorrow, we will travel to a village to see a little of rural China. I am excited about this trip. We have a typhoon that is supposed to be here tomorrow night and Saturday. Sounds like good nap weather to me.
Day 10 - Be still and know I am God. Psalm 46:10; Let us know become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Galations 6:9
These verses spoke volumes to me today. The bonding process is something we all worry about when adopting. Adopting an older child this time is very different. Julia totally depended on me at 21 mos old and the bonding was fast for me. Chaning is a little older and more independant this requires persistance and patience. Today, when I walked away to get my plate at breakfast, Chaning called for me twice and wanted to make sure she could see me. I try not to be out of her sight for any length of time. I love this little girl!!
Today, I decided just to stay in the room with Chaning after breakfast and the other patzi wanted to go to the Pearl Market. Chaning and I played for hours. She talked to me in Mandarin and I replied with face gestures and a little English. She took a nap and then we met up with our group to travel to the local police station to take her Chinese passport picture. We then met up again and went to dinner at a Portuguese restaraunt. Our guide, Simon, ordered for us, which was a very smart move. The menu looked a little, let's say, animalish of the unidentifiable kind. It was really good. The boys and Joan decided to go for a foot massage after dinner and mom and Chaning and myself decided we would venture over to Starbucks. That's where Chaning decided to tell me in Chinese that she had to go peepee. I wasn't picking up on what she was putting down. She finally had to grab herself and jump up and down. Oh, so that's what those words mean. We made it to the bathroom thanks to an English speaking employee.
Tomorrow we will change up our itenarary a little due to orphanage visits. We have chosen not to travel the five hours one way to visit the orphanage because it would just be too much on Chaning (ten hours in a car). We were able to give all our donations that we lugged 8k miles to the orphanage director the day we got Chaning. The six of us will be picked up and taken to several different parks tomorrow.
Chaning is still doing really well. She calls me mommy and wants me close to her when we go out. She minds really well when told not to do something. She talks a lot and is very silly. She is going to fit right in with our crew at home. 8 more days and we will be all together.
Okay, so I am typing this up and a man opens my hotel room door and says I have the wrong room and closes the door and goes away. I am a little freaked out. How does this happen? I know it was a mistake but come on. I just got a floor attendant to come try to explain to me how this can happen. She then got an English speaking person on the phone and long and short ... his key ( do not know which room he is in) will be replaced and my room is free tonight! Still do not like the fact someone else could open my door. Dead bolt is on. At least this place is classy enough to fix things very quickly. Hmmm, wonder if they are just compensating tonight or the whole 13 nights??
Last night went very well. After Chaning grieved herself into sleep at the Civil Affairs Office, we came back to the hotel. On the way back to the hotel, she laid her body on my chest and just stared out the window sucking her two fingers. She would not let me lift her away from me to look at her. Once we arrived at the hotel, she walked in the room and instantly began to walk around and become more relaxed. We played for a while and then went to dinner. She eats tiney tiny bites and chews the recommended 100 chews per bite plus some. She eats very little but lights up when she sees some chocolate. This is definitely my kind of girl. We returned to our room and she was excited about her bath because of all her new bath toys. She played in the tub excitedly for a while. She layed down and went to sleep very well holding her pictures of her new family.
Today, we had to return to the same exact room at Civil Affairs that we went to pick her up. It worried me something awful that she would get upset, but she did not. She was real quiet but did good. We are now officially her parents according to China but not the USA yet. We rested in the room for a few hours and then decided to all take a taxi over to Shaimian Island. I thought I would go the remainder of the trip with Chaning walking beside me holding my hand versus a stroller. That theory was thrown out the window after walking through 3 shops. She is the proud owner of a stroller now.. one of which she leaned over and kissed in delight once we started pushing her around. She is happy and momma is happy. She has had her bath and is already asleep which I will be right behind her after getting up AGAIN at 4 a.m. Please just shoot me if I get up that early in the morning again. Tomorrow we will go to the police station to apply for her Chinese Passport and Visa. Did I mention that she loves/aggravate Chase and Foster and they like to pick on her as well.
While I have the time to document because that will all change tomorrow, I want to record how the verses that a dear friend of mine shared with me in the form of a sealed card for each day of my trip. I have opened six cards so far and cannot believe how the verse that was placed in her heart for that day has spoken volumes at the appropriate time. This is what I have recorded for Chaning:
Day 1, July 13th - "Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10 - Results of the day - The unknowns of this trip had built up.
Day 2, July 14 - The Lord has done great things for me and I am filled with JOY. Psalm 126:3 - I received an upexpected phone call in the van on the way to my hotel in Shanghai after getting off the plane late at night. It was Chaning and she said, Hi Mommy!
Day 3, July 15 - O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever. Psalm 30:12. Result of day - This day I met Chaning & family and it was good, very good.
Day 4, July 16 - Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10. Result of day - Oh my, this one was so needed as I watched friends/teachers all say goodbye to Chaning.
Day 5, July 17 - The Lord watches over you- The Lord is your shade at your right hand. 7. The Lord will keep you from all harm - He will watch over your life. Psalm 121:5. Result of day- Chaning was on the same plane and was very nervous to see me. She told her Auntie and Nicole that she would be back home after her trip on the airplane.
Day 6, July 18 - Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again - Rejoice! Philippians 4:4. Result of this wonderful day - Chaning visited me in the hotel today. We spent many hours playing together and she held my hand for the first time.
Today could not have gotten any better. Chaning was receptive to me and made eye and skin contact me with. Yolanda did not translate for her for a while and she and I found ways to understand each other. She spent hours going through her backpack full of items (Thank you, Tonya). She is a girly girl. Her eyes lit up when I showed her the choices of clothing that were hers. She chose an outfit to wear to Gotcha day tomorrow. She wore her zebra sunglasses when we went outside and tried wearing her hairbow.
Tomorrow at this time I will have Chaning in my arms. This is going to be a time for grieving for her. Please continue to keep her and the family in your prayers. I feel she will grieve hard but will attach strongly.
I am loading some pictures from today. Two are from the hotel lobby and one is the front of the hotel. A few show the streets surrounding us. Tonya, one is of a yard sale we came across...In China!!;)