Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A few days back...plus heading home....

If you'd like to see some more photos from Chengdu scroll down a few days back. I posted some more photos from our stay in Chengdu. I have also been trying to catch up on some of the fun photos before we return. So there are more posts from our first few days in Guangzhou now too.

Also, we are leaving very early in the morning for Hong Kong. Wednesday January 15th at 5:30 am... while be Tuesday afternoon for our family at home. We will get on a plane in Hong Kong at 11am Wednesday China time (still Tuesday at home) and We will arrive in Chicago at 11am Wednesday (Chicago time!) We have been living in the future...literally and will be flying home to the past by 14 hours! We will completely miss an entire day, spending it in the air! Who says time travel doesn't exist?!!

My sister will be picking us up at the airport and bringing us home. We should arrive at our house around 1:30 pm if any of our local friends or family are interested in greeting Mr. Hudson Qi. Otherwise, we will see you all hopefully very soon. Can't wait for you to meet this wonderful little guy!

Please be praying for our travel. It will be an extremely long time with 3 young boys. This was a very difficult time when we came home with Lindsey. She was upset and sick the entire 14 hours! We are hoping for an easier flight with Hudson. We can't wait to be home and hug our other children. Skype is an amazing thing and has helped but I can't wait to squeeze them and be united as a family of EIGHT!!!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Consulate Appointment, check!

 Well we finally made it to this very special day! When we said our oath I was emotional again this time! Its just so amazing to feel that our family is complete with our sweet boy. Once the oath is done each family has to go up to the window and review some paperwork. When Tom was all done working with the man behind the window he said to Tom, "I am very sorry about your house fire!" Tom was like what??! Well, apparently he was the man that helped on this end of things to get some things expedited for us once USCIS had put things on hold because of our fire. (A long and frustrating story that really didn't need to happen at all but that's a story for another day!) But it was neat anyway to have someone across the world actually care enough to help get things done for us. Another time that God stepped in with His caring hand.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Guangzhou Zoo!

Sunday we had a free day to do something fun. We had a few choices and as a group we decided on the zoo. It was a beautiful day for the zoo. The weather was very nice, warm and sunny. We also enjoyed being with Ben, Amanda and Sophia on this little journey. It was a fun day of animal viewing and getting to know each other better.
This is the way that Hudson sits in the stroller. Its so hard watching him cry but its been difficult carrying him the entire time. We have been trying to put him in the stroller a little longer each time but he scream cries LOUD the whole time. It is so uncomfortable when all the people around stare at us. I am curious what they think. I can't take it though. I pick him up. Then he's instantly fine. Mama's boy already!
These chimps were so fun to watch. They reminded me of all of our crazy kids wrestling and playing at home. I can't wait to see them all playing together.

There was a lady with her family watching this bear. There are signs everywhere that say DO NOT feed the animals. I wish had a better angle for this photo to include the lady and the signs... She had a full loaf of bread and was dropping pieces to him. Seriously!
Its hard to tell from the photo but this is a baby tiger cub. He was pretty cute.
Then the giant royal looking adult tigers. You could practically feel their loud roaring.

If we held Hudson's hand it would help calm him down for a little while but he never really stopped crying unless he was held. It made me think about the glass being half full instead... at least he cries when he's not in our arms instead of when he is in our arms! Thank you God for an amazing new son!

Trevor had been asking for one of these kabobs as soon as he started smelling them. He's my meat eater. So they all gave them a try. It is lambs meat and seasoned. The boys really liked it. The men who ran the booth didn't even look Chinese to me. I asked our facilitator Lee about it and she said that they are from Western China and a Chinese minority. Most of the people we see around are Han. They are the people group that the one child law was given to in 1980.

Hudson is a very active and busy baby boy. Here are some cute pictures of him walking and playing in the entrance to our hotel room.

Then he tired himself out and watched a movie with the boys and dosed off. Trevor and Garrett have been so great with him. Very nurturing! I love my big boys so much. Such amazing young people!

After a nice nap he woke up playful. Daddy spent some time teasing, tickling and playing with him.
We are all amazed how flexible our little Lindsey is... well Hudson has the same skills! They definitely do not have my genetics but they sure do have my heart!

There is a very small playroom here at the hotel. We went up to check it out for a bit. The boys got pretty wild!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Out and about in Guangzhou!

Since Lee was so great at getting us in and out of the medical office early we had the drive drop us off on Sha Miam Island. We stayed on the island in March 2009 when we were here for Lindsey's adoption. It was an incredible feeling to see it again. This familiar place with such wonderful memories. We stayed at the White Swan Hotel then, as many adoptive families once did. However, this time it is under construction and has been for a year! I had heard they were remodeling. I just assumed it was new paint, tile and carpet... ya know a cosmetic overhaul. When we got here I wanted to head over and see if I could still get pictures of Hudson on the red couch. A traditional photo that adoptive families take here. BUT its completely torn apart. Seems to only be concrete left. You could basically see right through it, except for the green tarp and bamboo scaffolding. I think its going to be awhile before they are up and running again!

I forgot to mention in the post about the medical visit that there is one other family from our agency. Living Hope Adoption Agency in Pennsylvania. www.livinghopeadoption.org

We had a great time meeting families last time we were here and have stayed in touch with many of them which has been great. They all live out of state... But the really great part about the family we met this time is that they live only about 40 minutes from us!!!! We have been spending time with Amanda and Ben and their new daughter Sophia. We are already making plans to have a little get together with them and a few of our other China adoption local friends (I think you will know who you are if you are reading this! Be on the look out for your invite! If you don't hear from me... invite yourself over! The more the merrier!) This is something that I have been desiring to do for a long time. So our new found friends have encouraged me to get on with it! I wish I had taken more pictures with them. We only have one of their family I think.

So we spent the afternoon with our new friends, walking around the island, shopping, playing and we ate at Lucy's an American cuisine restaurant... we all got big juicy burgers and some fries! We enjoyed our visit while we ate and listened to American music from the 80's!

Below are a few more photos from our fun day on the Island. The big boys helped Hudson play on the playground and enjoyed it themselves as well. Good times!

Ben and Amanda took Sophia back to their hotel for a nap and we ventured out for some more culture! When we were here in 2009 Tom and I walked a long way and found a great shopping area that is less for tourists and more where the locals shop. So we headed back that way again. It was great to see all of the culture but I have to admit at times I was a little nervous about getting our pockets picked! It was SUPER crowded! And I mean China crowded not Chicago crowded... some of you will know what I mean its just TIGHT! The other major issue is that we had a VERY long walk to get there and Hudson HATES the stroller! We can't use the baby carrier because Hudson has a very large hernia (LONG SCARY story that we haven't shared on the blog) Tom can't carry him because its terribly hard on his ankle... so by the time we got there my arms and back were twitching from fatigue...normally I am pretty tough but carrying around 22 squirmy pounds for a week is taking its toll. It was a fun and enlightening experience, especially for the boys. Fun photos below...

Spice shops...
Here they had all types dried mushrooms and spices as well as a bunch of other mystery items! :)

Yum-yum bakery! Garrett's favorite... we have one in the hotel that we get rolls and pastries from in the morning... very good and very inexpensive.
This is a very large shopping center and the deeper we got into it... the busier it got!
We thought this was interesting especially in light of our families recent house fire. These are all over the place, at stores and restaurants. This one is in our hotel room. We are on the 13th floor So I suppose I am grateful its here, but a little nerve racking... the boys think it looks more like what you would use in an alien invasion than a fire but we plan to use it for either if needed! :)
A very sleepy little boy enjoyed watching us play Rummicube until he decided he was done with us playing and dove into the middle and messed it all up! Stinker! I love when I see signs of a normal silly toddler! Warms my heart.