Sunday, February 23, 2014

{Around The Garden}

Shortly after breakfast this morning, we ventured around this beautiful hotel and the blocks surrounding it.  We have an appointment at 3 this afternoon with our guide, Aron, and another adoptive family who will be meeting their daughter tomorrow, too.  {It's really quite incredible how you immediately bond over sharing this moment though we are truly giving birth at the same time, in the same room.}  The rest of our afternoon will entail going over all the documents and making sure everything is in order for Andie-Grace's Gotcha Day tomorrow.  Then, Aron will take us and the other family to Aeon {similar to a Walmart...and, yes, I'll be taking lots of photos!} to purchase formula, diapers and a few other necessities {like water...we are going through this bottled water quite quickly and need to find some gallons!}.  Usually, the family takes the newly adopted child with them immediately after they receive the child at the civil affairs office to purchase their favorite formula and treats but Aron has already been in touch with the orphanage to know what to get ahead of time.  This means that once we get Andie-Grace tomorrow we can come directly back to the hotel to begin bonding and spending lots of quality time together! 
We've already met several other adoptive families here, too.  Every adoptive family has to come to Guangzhou for at least the second week of their adoption trip since the US Consulate is located here.  This is where you apply for your child's visa to enter America as a US citizen.  Remember all those approvals we needed from Immigration earlier in the process...well, they all come together at that appointment.  And, our hotel caters to many adoptive families so there are lots here!  Since Andie-Grace lives in this province, we will stay in this city {the provincial capital} both weeks.  Some of the other families that are staying here have invited us to join them for dinner tonight at Tekila's {yes, our first meal out on the town in China will be Mexican!}.  We are really looking forward to that, too! back to the hotel! We are staying at a 5 star hotel and it's gorgeous!  The staff are very hospitable and helpful.  One of the guys that works as a concierge saw me wandering around with Wyatt and came out to see if he could help us.  He is originally from Germany but has lived here for 7 years.  The hotel is The Garden...appropriately titled for it's lovely gardens featuring a beautiful waterfall and lots of koi ponds and gardens.  The boys are in love with the fish...Wyatt wants to grab them up and hold them and Luke just feeds them gobs of bread.  There are many Asians here but also a lot of other nationalities.  At breakfast this morning, we defined the culture as very Euro and, y'all, the people watching is fantastic!  Another adoptive mom clued me in on asking for a cappuccino as soon as we are seated at breakfast...and I had three this morning!  So good!  I'll have to take photos of the breakfast one day to capture it all.  Quite an experience and delicious!  Our adoption agency has some sort of agreement with the hotel and all our agency's families stay here.  I told Scott that I'd love to find out what it really costs to stay here because you can't get a suite at the Hampton Inn for how affordable our cost is.  We were able to all pile into a one bedroom suite with a king bed and rollaway twin for Wyatt.  Luke slept in three different spots last night {which is pretty typical for him} so we couldn't justify the cost of a two bedroom just for that.  It'll be interesting adding Andie-Grace tomorrow night!  They've put a crib in our bedroom but I'll be the first to admit that all my babies co-sleep for quite sometime.  Obviously, she has spent 15 months in a crib and it may very well be her safe place as well as where she has sadly learned to self-soothe...and, if that's the case, then we'll do whatever is best for her.  But, I'm praying she'll quickly want to receive lots of snuggle time and allow us to comfort her.  So, who knows how many kids we'll end up with in our bed by the end of the week!  {I should mention that the concierge guy asked Scott if he could do anything to make our stay more comfortable and my never one to shy away from an offer hubby immediately responded "Sure, make our room bigger!".  The concierge said that since we will be with them for two weeks that he would try to arrange for an upgrade!  We shall see!}  I think I've effectively changed the topic at least ten times {thank you, jeg lag!}, in a nutshell, the hotel is beautiful, the architecture is amazing, people watching is the best {it's 70 degrees and locals are still wearing puffy coats outside} and the lost in translation signs are hysterical!


Jen Moore said...

I can't wait to cry (additional) tears of joy when I see that precious baby placed in your arms! God is so good!

Unknown said...

Love it sweetiheart!! - it is almost here!!!!!
THanks for all the pictures to get us stoked for our trip!

Unknown said...

love it!! - so close!!

Hall Family said...

What great photos! We were just there 2 years ago in November to adopt Pei. We too had 2 little ones with us 7 and 9 year olds. Looking forward to seeing gotcha day photos!
Alisa (Pei from Foshan)'s mom

Anonymous said...

New to your blog, so beautifully written and incredibly inspirational.

Good Luck, Praying for all to go well.