Thursday, March 31, 2016

A Day in the Park

Wednesday, was a mixed day for our group.  Some families having not visited their orphanages on Tuesday following breakfast left for their orphanages.  That left a group of us behind at the hotel.  A few of us gathered and went to the park that is located about a 20 minutes walk down the road.  It really isn't that far, but you have to cross over the street using a bridge and then take you life into your own hands as you cross another 6 lane road to get there.  The day was very warm and beautiful.  Ivy loves riding in the stroller which is a very good thing as my arms are aching from carrying her around all day.  This park is the same one I took Avery to visit when we were here to years ago to adopt her.  The park is beautiful and very full of families.  As a group we were quite the spectacle.   One family adopted two babies at the same time, plus they brought their three other children with them on this trip,  another family the husband is 6 foot eight, and well I am blond and get my own fair amount of attention.  If I had a Yuan for every photo taken of me, I would be rich.  Ivy was too little for the amusement rides, but the other families children loved them.  Then it was time to go home for a little nap before adventuring out for dinner.  We went to BBQ!  I know we are in China, but I have Chinese food every morning for breakfast.  Zax's is run by an American who is from Atlanta of all places.  I can't get the photo off my phone, but you will just have to believe me the food was good. I had ribs and sweet potato fries.  Yummy!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Officially Ours and a Visit to Xuchang

Tuesday was a very long day as we began the morning by departing at 9:00 a.m. to return to the civil affairs office where I  had received Ivy the day before to complete the adoption. China has a 24 hour waiting period before they will make the adoption complete.  If for any reason a family changes their mind they have this time period to say no.  The ceremony went smoothly and all 13 children that were received by their families on Monday became ours.  After the ceremony we had to travel to the office of notarization.  This ceremony also went very quickly.  We returned to the hotel around noon where we then had an hour to get lunch before each family headed to the city where their child came from.  Since our group was so large not all families completed this step on Tuesday, but some went on Wednesday morning.  China requires that you travel to the home city where your child is from in order to get a passport.  The drive to Xuchang took about an hour and thankfully everything went smoothly at the passport office.  It was then on to the orphanage where Ivy has lived the last two years.  I was surprised by how nice it was.  If you didn't know that this was a place where children lived and had no parents then you would just think  it was a nice day care center.  The rooms where clean the ration of nanny to child was pretty good and the children looked happy and well taken care of.  Such a huge difference from where Avery lived.  The grounds were nice as their was a small play ground outside and some lovely trees.  In Ivy's orphanage live about 150 children from the ages of 0 to 14.  Those who can go to school do and a van comes to pick them up each day.  Ivy was very well loved.  Sadly her caregiver was not there that day, but all the nannies where happy to see Ivy.  They kept taking pictures of us which made me a little uncomfortable because they were not doing the same for the other two families who were traveling with me who had also adopted a child from their orphanage.  I think she was kind of a rock star and maybe even a little bit spoiled.  It was time to say our goodbyes we thanked them and made our way back to Zhengzhou.  The journey back took us around two hours and Ivy had enough at this point.  She was so tired an hungry.  She cried the whole way back.  Poor thing!  That night we went to KFC for dinner.  I don't eat fast food that often, but boy did it taste so good. However, my dinner the night before was a snicker bar so this was a huge improvement.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Forever Family Day!

Sunday turned into a very long day.  I left the hotel in Hong Kong around 9:30 and checked-in and went through security to only find out that my plane was delayed by an hour.  I arrived in Zhengzhou around 4:30 in the afternoon making it through costumes just a little after 5 p.m.  Vivienne and the other CCAI representatives were there along with the rest of my travel group.  9 other families here in Henan  and three in other provinces making a total of 12 families all together.  We then drove to the hotel which should have been only an hour but ended up taking almost 2 hours due to traffic for an upcoming holiday.  Once we were checked in, we met our guide in the lobby and headed over to the Walmart to get supplies.  Cart full a few of us ate at Burger King.  I some how managed to get pick pocketed, but thankfully it wasn't to much money.  Then it was back to the room where I prepared all the equipment and pack a bag for Ivy.  Nerves in my stomach is was hard to sleep.  After a delicious breakfast we hopped on the bus at 9:30 a.m and headed to the civil affairs office.  When we arrived there was a baby all ready there, but it wasn't Ivy.  The camera were all whipped out and we all cried teats of joy for Robin.  Then it seamed like forever before the next baby arrived, but it wasn't one baby but 5.  Ivy was in that group of babies.  She screamed bloody murder and cried for almost a good hour afterward.  We signed the paperwork and back on the bus we went.  Ivy seemed a little happy once we got back to the room.  I fed her a bottle, some baby food and a couple crackers.  She seemed happy to play with the stacking cups.  However , was not thrilled when later we had to leave the room once again to fill out more paperwork for the following day.  Dinner was not going to be on the agenda for the evening but was able to find a snickers and a coke zero in the mini bar.  Did the trick.  Well it is late and I was able to finally get baby girl asleep.  I am off to bed now as tomorrow will be another long day.  Our family is now complete.  Thanks Ivy Margaret for joining our family.