Headed to the airport

We leave for the airport in 90 minutes. We have a 3 hour flight to Korea, then a 2 hour layover, then a 11 hour flight to LAX, then a 3 hour layover. Then a 2.5 hour flight to DFW.

That is a lot of travel time and we are grateful for your prayers. Specifically:

  • For Mike’s ear to stop hurting so bad.
  • That I wouldn’t cough so much since that is what aggravates the pain in my side.
  • That both girls sleep on the planes.
  • That no one pukes or has any other sickness.

Thanks for all your support during this adventure.

Friday – our last full day in China

China 2011 (Day 16)
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Amelie having pizza for the first time – she loved it!

This is going to be the fastest typed post in the East because I am tired and we need to get to bed because we leave the hotel at 10:30 am to head for home. We have almost everything packed except the toys and the toiletries so I am feeling like I will sleep well tonight. Praying that Amelie sleeps all night! We got up and headed down to breakfast and then decided we better head to the island to finish our shopping while I was feeling good from all the medicine. We headed to “Jade’s Place” to get a chop with Amelie’s name and “Michaels Place” to pick up some gifts I had on my list that I didn’t get on Tuesday. We saw a family from our travel group (the Nielands) and posed for a quick photo since they were headed to Hong Kong in the afternoon.

China 2011 - Day 16

We had lunch at the Deli at the White Swan and then went back across the bridge to our hotel so Amelie could have a nap. At 3:45 her and I headed down to the lobby to wait for Grace to show up with the children’s visas and our brown envelopes for immigration in America. After that the Hameloths said they were going to get Pizza Hut so we decided to have a pizza party (reminded me of Nanchang with our 1st travel group). That sounded great to us and we went down to the club level to eat. Here is Logan and the girls playing “ring around the rosie”.

China 2011 - Day 16

And here is a photo of us with the Hameloths. We traveled the paperwork and matching road together so it was very fun to get to spend our week in Guangzhou together getting to know them in person.

China 2011 - Day 16

Thursday – off to the medical clinic

China 2011 (Day 15)
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So I went to bed on Wednesday basically in tears and woke up in tears and told Mike I had to go to the doctor. There is a clinic in the White Swan on the island, but after reading about everything we decided they might want to do an x-ray so we should head over to the big ex-pat CanAm clinic at the Garden Hotel. After breakfast we took a cab over for my 11 am appointment. In the cab Nadia puked all over herself and Mike. I was glad that she refused to eat breakfast at that point so it wasn’t really icky.

At the clinic they were very friendly, everyone spoke English and they asked a lot of questions on the consultation. After that the doctor decided that I should have a chest X-ray and we waited around for the results. The X-ray came back that I hadn’t done anything to my ribs and from the other exam she said my heart and lungs were fine. She did say that I had a respiratory infection, but that it was strange that I didn’t have any fever or ear pain. She said that my throat was swollen where my tonsils should be. They gave me a stronger anti-biotic, a Chinese cough syrup, an American cough syrup and some extended release Advil. By the time they were done with me Nadia was back to her old self and chipper as ever. She was still coughing though and we have continued to give her medicine.

The Garden was really swank. Check out this staircase and Nadia counted that it had 50 steps.

China 2011 - Day 15
We headed back to the hotel and hung around the room. At one point Mike went to get the photos from the orphanage, but only 4 came out because we think the film was loaded wrong. I will post those after we are home. For dinner we just went down to the club level and ate there. Then we all went back to the room to get to bed early. I was in pain again and was ready for sleep.

Here are some shots Mike took from our hotel room.

China 2011 - Day 15

China 2011 - Day 15

Amelie continues to be more and more relaxed with us. Nadia continues to learn about real sharing since she didn’t really expect this about having a sibling no matter how much we talked about it. She is very possessive, but the good thing is we are hearing less and less about the Green Goblin and how he would react to situations.

Wednesday – The Swearing-in Day

China 2011 (Day 14)
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We woke up on Wednesday after a good night’s sleep and not so much screaming from Amelie at bedtime. Mike has a master technique with her and it’s a relief to me that he can put her to bed so well. We went down for breakfast and had to head straight up to our room to wait from 9 – 10 am in case our guide Grace called from the Consulate. Grace called a little after 10 to tell us that everything was fine and to be in the lobby at 2:10 pm to head to the consulate so Amelie could be sworn in. I got the girls a bath right after that and we got Amelie down for a nap. The rest of us had a nap too and then got up to get ready.

We got to the Consulate in about 40 minutes, went through security (they take your camera and cell phones because no photos are allowed inside). We waited around for a while and then the head of the adoption unit came out to explain to us what the process would be. She told us that there were 3000 adoptions from China in 2009 and 3400 in 2010 (60% special needs children). So far in 2011 she said that 73% of the children were special needs. I read in a Chinese newspaper a couple days ago that so far 60,000 children have been adopted out to the US and 90% were girls. Then she had all the parents stand up and take the oath for the children. Everyone clapped and cheered when we were done. Then she said we would wait for our name to be called so we could sign the last document for our adoption (insert more clapping and cheering).

Once our turn came up Mike was about to sign when I noticed that we had the Hameloth family’s signature page and I said, “Stop, that’s not us!” The woman looked very confused, but then she went to see what happened. Somehow they ended up with 2 copies of the last page and our last page was missing. They called us back and we signed the form and we were officially done. All of our group headed back downstairs and here we are with our soon-to-be new US citizen.

China 2011 - Day 14

Here is part of the group on the bus after the swearing in.

China 2011 - Day 14

After returning to the hotel our guide Grace took Lynnea and us to the photo shop to get our film from the orphanage developed. Once that was dropped off we decided that we would eat dinner at the Guangzhou restaurant which has been around since 1935. It has a pond on the floor inside which is pretty cool. Once they got a table put together for us they came over to ask us what kind of tea we wanted. We all said no tea. Then they got really stressed out and they showed me a translated booklet that basically said ‘everyone gets tea in our restaurant’ and the woman who couldn’t speak much English was saying it was custom to get tea. So we all had tea because what else could you do but leave? Then we placed our dinner order. It was really fantastic and I was once again wishing that my stomach was bigger. We had dumplings, shrimp fried rice, Guangzhou style fried noodles, some fish dish, a beef dish with veggies and shrimp balls with Mushrooms.

China 2011 - Day 14

After dinner Amelie decided that a meltdown was in order and we took off to the hotel. We got Amelie to sleep in no time flat because she was so worn out. It was a good day.