Jack's Little Mei Mei

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Lily's Foster Home and Mom

Monday, January 29, 2007

Chinese Herb Stands and Market-Last Post from China

Lily in her Chinese dragon headdress.

Enjoying a coffee and bottle after the walking tour. Sorry I put the photos in backwards. The beginning of the Herb market is at the bottom.
7-up anyone?
Kittens and puppies for sale

The old with the new

Scorpions anyone? They eat these!
Dried frogs for some ailment.
Chinese herb store. There were dozens of little shops like these on this block.

Shamian Island, the location of the White Swan Hotel, use to be a collections port so many westerners use to come here to import and export goods. The island has a western/European feel and is very clean and beautiful. It feels like New Orleans. The White Swan Hotel is a 5 star hotel and has hosted many presidents and even the Queen of England. When you cross the bridge and go into Guangzhou, just a short 15 minute walk from the White Swan, you are back in "real China" again as Cindy tells us. We experienced that yesterday afternoon.

Cindy took us on a walking Chinese Herbal market tour. The Chinese boil the herbs and make them into a soup to relieve whatever ailment is occurring. We even saw dried seastars which is suppose to help with sore throats. After the block of herb shops we went by a pet market on teh next block where they sell all sorts of pets including dogs and cats. She told they are pets and not for eating purposes. At the end, she took us to a farmers type market which is pretty much the standard for grocery shopping in China. That was quite an experience. The vegetables and fruit were beautifully displayed and so fresh. It was so interesting and I am really glad I went until we got to the back of the market. I saw one thing that I refused to take a photo of it and you can ask me about it later. I had trouble going to sleep seeing this image in my head and unfortunately Jack also saw it. He has not mentioned it and I think it was too horrible for him that he has erased it from his mind. You can see from the pictures above some of the other weird things we saw.

After the walking tour of Guangzhou, we came back to our beautiful island and had a civilized cup of coffee and Jack had a 7-up. Jack and I then went to the park and Tim and Lily did some shopping. We went out for dinner last night with the group for some Cantonese food. It was good, but I much prefer the spicy food from the north.

Lily is feeling better and slept very well last night. Her chest cold is loosening up and her fever seems to be gone. I now have the cold and don't feel that great. At least Jack and Tim are not sick.

This afternoon we go to the US Consulate to get her US passport and swear her in as a US citizen. When she gets off the plane in San Francisco she will be an American. In the past I have thanked China for letting me adopt this beautiful girl. I feel like we are sneaking home a secret Chinese princess. However, I really should thank our country, the good ole' USA! I am so glad to be an American where I have so many opportunities and freedoms including the ability to adopt Lily!

We are so ready to come home. I will miss China, but know I will come back some day to show Lily her place of birth and her beautiful culture. We bought some really cool things to help her embrace China and I plan to print out my "blog" so she can read our journey to bringing her home to her forever family.

She has brought the perfect balance into our family with her sweetness and laughter. We love her so and know you will too, if not already.

Thank you so much for following our trip of a lifetime. We love you all and could feel your love and support all the way in China! Please sign the comments page if you haven't already so we know who has been tuning in. Don't be shy!

With Love from China!
Tim, Lisa, Jack and Lily

>I will do one more follow up post at home and then delete my blog from the internet for the privacy of our family.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Red Couch Photo

All the babies in our group. 6 are from Nanfeng SWI. Lily is in the middle crying.
Our group.

Lily and her friend Lucia who will live in New Jersey. We hope to keep in touch with this family.
Lily getting ready for the big photo shoot.
Jack and Lily in front of the "Year of the Pig" decoration- White Swan Hotel

Lily's squeaky shoes. These should cover her for a year or 2- size wise.
Having Lunch at the Thai Restaurant. Dad, you would love this place!
Our wonderful guide Cindy and us in front of the Chen Family Temple. She is the best guide in the world and doesn't miss a beat!
Inside the Chen Family Temple. We loved this place!
A cool sculpture in the Chen Family Temple Gardens.
Ornate doors- bad photo of Lisa!
Ornate roof top.
Jack with Mr. Chen the poet. Banyon Tree behind him.
Yogurt face!
Yesterday's blog was written by Tim. I was too tired from taking care of a sick little girl to blog so Tim stepped in for me. I know it wasn't the same quality, but at least you got something. Also, sorry I missed wishing Benjamin a Happy Birthday a few days ago! We did get you and Nicholas a cool present from China. We love you guys! Happy Birthday Mom!

The blessing at the Six Banyon Temple was very cool. This monk chanted a prayer for the babies and their health and then he dipped a leaf into a bowl of blessed water and sprinkled it on us. We weren't allowed to take pictures inside the temple. I am not buddist, but will take as many blessings as I can get. Buddism is a really cool religion and I learned a lot about it from Cindy. They believe in reincarnation and that you must live a good life now so your next life will be good too and you won't come back as a pig or rat. It seems like a very peaceful religion. Tim and Jack climbed the big tower which was over 1000 years old (see yesterday's photos) while Lily and I walked around and lit some incense.

We then went to the Chen Family Temple. I must say this was the most beautiful place we have seen so far in terms of architecture. This place is not a temple of a religious place to worship god, but rather a place for the Chen Family to worship their ancestors. One area was destroyed during the cultural revolution. Cindy doesn't like to talk about the Cultural Revolution much. She was just a little girl when it happened, but says it was just a terrible time for China and set them back 30 years.

Last night was horrible. Lily was up almost every hour crying from her cough and stuffy nose. It was a cry of being in pain. I also think at night is when the trama of what she has been through comes out. A lot of the babies in our group are having trouble sleeping. I can't wait to get her home and into a routine and into her own crib.

She is napping now so I hope it will be a long restful one.

This morning we had our "Red Couch" photo in the lobby of the White Swan Hotel. This is a Chinese adoption tradition to line up all the babies in silk outfits on the red couch and take their photos. It was really cute for the parents, but not for the babies. As you can see from the pictures, they are not too happy. Lily is in the middle crying in her blue and red outfit.

The hotel is getting ready for Chinese New Year on Feb. 18th. They have some beautiful decorations out. In fact, most of the stores are selling Chinese New Year things.

We did some more damage yesterday in terms of shopping. We are trying to buy Lily one little gift for each of her birthdays until she is 16. I am also looking for a Jade necklace or bracelet to give her for her college graduation or a special occasion. We were suppose to go to the Jade factory yesterday, but we opted out with Lily's cold. Jack is pretty tired of the hotel life and all the appointments. I am so glad we brought him even though a few times he was a bit of a little ......(you can fill in your own word here.) Those times were only about 5% of the time. That is pretty good for a 5 year old.

Tomorrow we go to the US consulate to swear in the babies. No photos are allowed there. We leave China early on the 31st. Our flight goes through Beijing and then straight to SFO. 12 hours of fun!

Lily Blessed at Buddist Temple

We had a fantastic day touring a buddist temple, and the Chen Family Temple. Lily and the rest of us were blessed by a monk, the ceremony was awesome. We have become enthralled with the ancient architecture and art. Lily has a bad cold and was up all night, however she continues to bond with each of us and constantly has a smile on her face. On the first day we had to feed her, on the second day she could pick up cheerios, but couldn't find her mouth, on the third day she found her mouth and continued to stuff it, today she learned how to hold her bottle on her own.

Oh yeah Lily wanted to say happy Birthday Barb.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Lily's Medical Exam

Jack does a puppet show for us with his new Dragon puppets.

Showing off some Kung Fu moves.
Playing hackeysack with the locals.
Old Folks doing some exercise while they smoke.
Jack showing off his new dragon suit while Lily sleeps.
Lily's new Adoption mom Barbie with Chinese baby. Everyone staying at the White Swan gets one of these.
Cutie pie!
Our suite with marble bathroom.

Today Lily had her required US Visa Medical Exam. The red mark on her arm is ecxema. Yeah! I was worried that it might be ringworm or impetigo. They gave me some cream to put on it and it already looks better. The ENT doctor said her throat was red and she has a bad cough. Her lungs sound good. She was fine all day, but at 4:00 she ran a fever of 102. She didn't take a very good nap on account of her cough and runny nose. Tim went to the White Swan doctor and got her some infant cold medicine. We plan to put a pillow under her mattress to keep her head elevated and hope she sleeps ok. Poor girl. Her spirits are still good and she is munching cheerios and talking to us as I type.

We walked around the island today and did lots of shopping. Jack picked out some presents for himself and some friends. We bought Lily 3 pairs of squeaky shoes and plan to get a few more in bigger sizes. They are so cute and only $4.00 each. We also bought some art and a few Chinese silk outfits for Lily in various sizes for future birthdays. Jack bought a dragon outfit that he insisted on wearing out of the store. (See photos) This island is very European looking and almost everyone speaks English. We took Jack to a park today and it was very interesting. There were lots of old people doing exercises on the equipment. We also saw lots of children playing a hackeysack type of game. One family invited Jack and Tim to join in so they did.

Tomorrow we are visiting a Buddist Temple and Lily will be blessed by a monk.

We are almost finished with our trip here in China. We have really loved it here. We are getting ready to head home. It is hard living in a hotel with kids for 15 days!

We are staying in tonight and missing the group dinner at a local Thai restaurant that is suppose to be fabulous. We want our Lily to feel better. We ordered in dinner and it is about to arrive.