Saturday, September 18, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Good Morning/Evening !
The day has finally come! We are headed downstairs for our final breakfast here at White Swan. Wow! Have we been spoiled! We went to the US Consulate yesterday afternoon for our oath ceremony. Such an emotional packed event. A milestone of one journey coming to an end and the start of a new and more exciting one. We leave Guangzhou today at 4 pm headed to Hong Kong. Taking a train ride which should be about 3.5 hours. Another chance to get to experience all the aspects of China.
I caught Natalie staring out the hotel window yesterday and at that moment I came to realize that she really understands what is going on now. Such a brave little girl. Cannot wait to get her home to meet her family and friends. Please be in prayer with us during this leg of our journey. Not only for our safety, but for the smooth transition of our daughter into her new family.
See you guys soon!!
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Good Morning Everyone!
I know I've not been the best blogger since being in China, however the last little "world-turning upside down paperwork catastrophe" has kinda got me a little gun shy in regards to posting. With everyone's prayers and the Lord's blessing not to mention poor Todd's above and beyond call of duty dedication we worked thru it. The package should be arriving here at the White Swan on Monday. The time has flown by! It is already Sunday! We are headed out to the Safari Park today with the kids. Is it wrong that I've already started packing my luggage to come home? :)
Christy J and her crew met us for dinner last night at Lucy's. It is soo nice to hear someone else with a Southern twang in their voice. We introduced Natalie to saying her blessing before meals. With all of the ups and downs we have had this week, I admit adding another facet to our already huge pile of frustration was something I had decided to do once we got home.
We have our days. She is 11 yrs old, however her stature suggests around 8 or 9. She is definitely tiny. However, our guide says it's because she is Cantonese. They are always small structured people. I was wondering about the squatting thing of Chinese people. So, what does every curious American do? They GOOGLE it! And I discovered that the Chinese believe that squatting vs. standing helps alleviate the stress standing places on the spine. Wow! Who would've thought.
So enjoy our pics from our outing last night! The live animals in the tanks are choices for dinner if you are interested! Yes, flounder was normal, however the water beetles, eels and snakes kinda pushed me over the edge. The once thought deep-fried pigeons that we saw suspended from their necks have later been identified as some sort of duckling. Yummy!
Where is Olive Garden when you need it!
Countdown has begun!
See ya'll soon!
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Good Morning! Finally! All of the nerve wrecking paperwork at the Civil Affairs Office is complete as of yesterday. Our little Nat has definitely come out of her shell so much! We went swimming at the pool yesterday for the first time and went out for hot wings last night! Let me tell you, that girl can put a serious hurtin' on some wings! She decided that she wanted some sunglasses like Ashton's. So we got her some LV's (I'm sure they are genuine) :) and she is a self-proclaimed movie start. Hilarious! As you can see in the pics she is awesome and is doing well. We have some moments but considering only one day into the process, we are going to be just fine.
Headed to the security office here in Guangzhou today to apply for her passport to come home. She calls Ashton, "sista" and me "Mather"...still working on the mommy thing. For some reason "mother" makes me feel like I should be about 60 years old and in a wooden wheelchair. :) All is well...all of our buddies will be here on Sunday. Cannot wait!
See ya then!
Sunday, September 5, 2010
Sunday September 5, 2010
Early this morning we left Beijing headed to Guangzhou. After flying with China S*outhern Airlines and realizing that the Chinese people do not like anything cold i.e. air conditioner, cold beverages etc. needless to say that 3 hr. plane ride ended with a class on Chinese acupuncture coming across the TV monitors in the plane.
All of my preconceived notions about how Guangzhou was this tiny secluded place where I thought there would be a lot of rural areas were totally shot out the window when we arrived. Wow! Never will I let my predetermination's set the tone for what's to come. Our guide Lucy meets us at the Guangzhou airport. We head out talking about what our day will consist of tomorrow. Go exchange money at bank early in the morning. Make more copies of your passports and the list goes on! Meet us in the lobby at 2 pm to go to the Civil Affairs Office..here you will meet your daughter! Why is this so hard to believe? After all this time..less than 24 hrs. we will have our Nat!!! Amazing it has finally hit! The tears start flowing as we leave the airport. Just thinking I am in the city of my child's birth parents. Somewhere out there in this crowded place walks a woman who has no idea that in less than two weeks her daughter will be gone from here. Gone to be with her new family. I sit here and think about the huge sacrifice this woman has made. I pray for her conscious, I pray for her ability to know that somehow her child is loved already. I pray for Natalie to be able to see our actions in a positive light. Not just another couple who comes and take these children away from all they know. I can only imagine how Natalie is going to feel. After being in country for only 3 days now, the smells are different, the language is different, the people are different...I get it! I totally understand how hard this is going to be for our child. Please pray for her to jump back into life and understand that we love her even though we've never touched her soft hands. Only admired her photos from afar...
Peng takes and elevator. Peng missing his cell phone.
Hanging out in Beijing. Peng at the Forbidden City
Making one last call. Waiting for a bus.
Obeying traffic rules. Peng checking out.
Saying goodbye to Water. Checking out the White Swan.
View of Guangzhou from room.
Saturday, September 4, 2010
Hello from Beijing:
Well, it's 2 am here and I was hoping to be a little more acclimated at this point but I'm sure a few days will be better. Yesterday was crazy! Ashton and I started out around 0530 got dressed and went downstairs for breakfast. So excited to see French toast & bacon! Yummy! Had a nice, satisfying breakfast and then headed outside to check things out.
Not too much going on in Beijing at 0630. But let me tell you...it doesn't stay like that long. By 1000 the streets were packed, horns blowing in his strategically orchestrated dance of city traffic. Not an angry or stressed out face was to be seen. Amazing! Already China has taught me that there are some things in life you have to accept and realize it is what it is!
Our guide picked us up around 9 in the lobby. We were heading over to the Great Wall. On our way we stopped off at a local jade factory. Not only was it a museum, there were sculptors displaying their works and a huge store ready to be immersed with those American dollars. I am not a huge jade fan. Some people can pull it off...not me. I'm the same way with turquoise, really weird. So instead of spending money on something that I knew I would never wear, I decided to pick up a few small things for the girls. I'm sure before I leave there will be something I just can't live without.
Traditional way of putting on a jade bracelet
Those girls again
Lined up outside the Jade Factory
At the Great Wall the heat and aridness of the mountains really kicked in. Why had I never figured out that these steps were so steep? I'm talking nosebleed section here! Thank goodness I wasn't the only one struggling. Whew! I think my legs were still shaking when I went to bed last night. It was really random. Being the nerdy tourist that I am, Ash & I get our pics taken in the traditional Chinese garb. While standing there looking as out of place as we did, these random people just kept showing up in the middle of our photo shoot to stand beside us for family pics. It was almost flattering however the expression on my beet red face does not convey that at all.
“Great Crowd” on the Great Wall
Our guide, Water
Still getting ready
The “Great Stairs” of China
Did I mention it was 400 degreesF!
The rest of the afternoon went well. Headed downtown to the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square. Still smoldering from the Great Wall the walking around brought a hugely deserved breeze. Again while walking around this young Chinese teenager asked for our photo with her as well. Not that I mind that at all, it's just weird to know or not know rather where these pics are gonna end up.
Chairman Mao on Gate No.1
Off to acrobatic show. Boy, this day has really took it's toll on me and Ashton. Hoping to get some sleep.We fly to Guangzhou in the morning and still in denial that on Monday, less than 48 hrs, we get to meet our little princess...Cannot wait!
See ya soon!
Teresa & Ashton
Friday, September 3, 2010
Just got to our room in Beijing about an hour ago...it's now 7:41 pm here...after a 2 hr delay from Chicago it has been a long, long day. Traffic is horrendous here in Beijing. Our guide "Water" is so nice. We are staying at the Holiday Inn-Downtown Beijing. If I weren't so exhausted Ashton and I might go look around. But I think I'm gonna take a rain check for now.
Headed to The Great Wall/Forbidden City & Tiananmen tomorrow...Will post pics later...