Saturday, August 25, 2007

Day 9 In Guangzhou

Our Hotel in Wuhan
The view from our hotel window in Wuhan

The newest Wisconsin resident on her first plane ride.

I've gotten a bit behind. Exhaustion tends to do that to a person!

Madison was a Rock Star on the plane yesterday. To keep her ears from bothering her, we fed her an apple (yes, she ate 3/4 of it!) and cheerios. That's my girl!

We are now in Guangzhou for the last leg of our China trip. This is where the US Consulate that handles adoptions is located. It's so hot and so humid the towels never dry in the room and a sweaty t-shirt will still be damp 24 hours after you wear it(and believe me, we're sweating!)! It's like you could cut the humidity with a knife! Crazy! The town is on a small island and what we've seen of it, it's beautiful and quaint. The weather and the architecture remind me of New Orleans.

I'm pretty brain dead, so prepare yourself to read a lot of random thoughts.

Maddie with her "Going Home" Barbie from the White Swan Hotel

Maddie is making a lot of progress. She's starting to play independently... if dad's in sight. She lets me hold her and play with her if she's not hungry or tired. Plus, I tend to feed her, so I'm winning her over with food!!! She loves the camera (as you can probably tell from the above photo (she's becoming quite the ham whenever I get it out!).

We get a lot of shocked looks when we tell people she's only 10 months old! They all think she's a lot older because she's so big! It's pretty funny because everyone stops us and wants to see her and talk to her, and sometimes hold her, which is a cultural thing, I guess, and I've started making people guess how old she is. ;-)

Tomorrow (Sunday) we have nothing going until 7:00 so I think we'll do a little shopping.

Here's a photo of the neighborhood we're staying in. Do you recognize the circular sign in the middle of the photo?

Up until today, we haven't been able to read the "comments" that people have left on the blog but now we can and we appreciate the kind thoughts from everyone!

Tomorrow, after I go get a big old treat from the place in the photo above (;-), maybe I'll be a little more clear headed and will be able to think more about what I want to write about.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Day 4 and 5: Are we dreaming?

She's so easy! She sleeps, eats, looks around, eats, likes to imitate sounds, eats...get the picture? And yes, those of you who are wondering, the weight was not incorrect! She weighed 24 lbs (11 kg) this morning! She's heavy!

She's definitely a daddy's girl. If she's in a good mood she'll let me hold her, as long as dad's not too far away! Jeff's back's getting sore from carrying her!

Last night I swear Madison ate more than I did! She won't drink formula and eats table food (with her 4 teeth). It's the craziest thing! When the caregiver handed her to us yesterday morning, she gave us a couple of slices of cantaloupe for her and put one in her hand. She ate the whole thing and wanted more! The girl can eat!
After dinner she had her first bath with us and by 8:30 was out cold! She slept in her crib all night (until 6:00 a.m.) only waking up once at midnight and let mom rock her back to sleep.

This morning 6:00 a.m.

Today, Aug. 21, we went back to the Civil Affairs Office (that's where we picked her up yesterday) and finalized her paperwork for the Chinese govt.

Our fingerprints and signatures.
Maddie's Footprint.

Now, Dad and Maddie are taking a nap. She really is a dream girl! There is really only one girl in our group of 10 who's having a tough time. The rest seem to have latched on to the dad's and are just long as they're in sight. They're all around 10 months old and were all in foster care in this province. But they're all different sizes! Some are little peanuts and some are big girls (guess which one Maddie is?!?!?)

Oh yeah, I forgot...I was going to post some photos of the palatial hotel we're staying at.
I'll try to get one of the outside tonight. It's only been open since Aug. 8. I feel like we're going to break something and feel guilty if Maddie drops a Cheerio on the floor! The staff is so nice and so accomodating!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Today's the Day!

Today we go get Madison at the Civil Affairs office in Wuhan! It's 6:00 a.m. right now and we're picking her up at 9:30.

We could definitely get used to living like this! The hotel we're staying in, the Wuhan Jin Jiang International, is like "The Plaza" and I'm not exaggerating! We'll post photos later along with new ones of Madison.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Day 1 and Day 2 Beijing

We tried to post yesterday (which was day one)and we couldn't get logged in. We think that the hotel or even the city of Beijing is censoring the blog site. Luckily, our new friends, Ken and Katrina, have a super secret access and are letting me use it to post to you all. Thanks a million to them!!!

Anyway, so yesterday (day one, Aug. 17) we went to the Great Wall, one of the seven ancient wonders of the world. It was hot hot hot! Luckily, our tour group went to an area of the Wall where we could take a cable car up to the Wall, instead of having to climb up the mountain. Whew! It was amazing! And Surreal!

Next we went to a cloisonne factory, where we saw how they make the traditional vases and enamel-ware (just think of the Ming Vase). They also had a restaurant there where they served all 30 of us a huge family style lunch.

Last we took a rickshaw to an old section of Beijing and went to a woman's house where we were served tea and saw how people lived in the past (50 years ago and more). It was an odd experience, to say the least, but I won't go into that now. Ask us later.

We got back to the hotel, showered up after a hot, sweaty day, ate dinner and passed out! That was a long day in the heat!

Day two: Aug. 18
Today was even hotter (at least 95F and humid)! First, we had orientation with our agency, preparing us for when we get to province tomorrow. We also got a beautiful red silk memory book with updated information about Madison and an updated photo. We had another huge family style lunch before going on our excursion.

The first place we went to was Tiennamin Square, which was just hot! It was an experience being there, but sooooo hot!

After Tiennamin, we went to the Temple of Heaven, where the Emperor used to make sacrifices for a good harvest twice a year. Very traditional and beautiful architecture.
Tomorrow we leave for Hubei and on Monday, we'll get Madison. The thought is thrilling and surreal!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Less than 5 days to go!

AAAHHH!!! We fly out at noon on Wednesday, the 15th. I have piles everywhere and lists of things I need to do. Focusing on one task is tricky at this point!

To cut the stress I think: "Remember to take all the paperwork with. Anything we forget, we can buy."

Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers!