Friday, June 30, 2006

1. Like my dance costume?
2. Watching the fish at McWane Center
3. Peas for lunch make me very happy (but not my mom - she says I can have her share!)

Well, It's been over a week since I posted anything so I thought I'd do a little update. Hannah continues to do GREAT. She amazes me with her resiliency and adaptability to change. She is picking up quite a number of signs (sign language) to communicate and is saying a few words. Her speech is very difficult to understand due to the cleft palate, but I'm so proud of her attempts. I can tell that although there are still gaps (and likely will be for a while), she is understanding more and more English everyday. I can now give her simple directions without guestures and she will follow them (or shake her head "no" toddler style!, but she usually follows them.) She's eating great, sleeping pretty good. She goes to bed and falls asleep easily now, but still wakes up in the middle of the night crying a lot. But, she goes back to sleep quickly. She's a very well rounded child - she likes to dress up in her princess and dance costumes and crash her toy cars together. She loves to splash in the pool, dance, and likes to cuddle up in my chair to read books. As someone who loves to read myself, I love that I see the beginnings of that desire in my daughter. We take weekly trips to the library to pick out books, and then we read and re-read them every night. As soon as Hannah has put on her pajamas and brushed her teeth, she looks at me with a big smile and signs "book". She's not a big fan of TV or videos. That's probably a good thing. There is one video that she does like though - a "Miss Patty Cake" sing-a-long video. Hannah also likes to color, and we have a posterboard of her artwork that is still "in progress" hanging up in the kitchen. That 1 piece of posterboard is among the best .79 I ever spent. It has kept her busy while I fix dinner for over a week now! Hannah is doing well with meeting new people as long as it's not too many at once. Big events with lots of people are harder and still a bit overhwhelming. At church, she does great during the service (she sits with me and enjoys the music the first half and goes to the nursery the 2nd half to play) but has a bit of a hard time afterwards. So, I'm taking it slow and trying to be careful not to let her get into a situation that's too overwhelming, and yet allowing her to experience what she can. Like I said at the beginning, she amazes me with her resiliency and adaptability to change!

So, that's where we are...happy and very blessed! Thanks for checking in on us and look for more updates soon!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Some Pictures

1. It's Hannah!
2. No, it's a scary monster!
3. Playing with our friends Karen and her daughter Leanne (I like these people - they clap and cheer for me all the time!)
4. I love my new tricycle. My mom put it together all by herself. I thought it looked too easy for her so I added a challenge by climbing all over her while she did it.
5. Summer Fun - I love my little pool!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Cleft Clinic Visit

We had our cleft clinic appointment today and it went very well. It was a long morning, but Hannah was a trooper and hung in there great. In fact, one of the nurses gave her treats at the end for being the "model patient of the day". As soon as that sucker made it to her mouth, she started crying! That's my girl . .hang in there and hold it together until you get the reward. Then, let loose!! I can't blame her a bit though.

There is fluid in her ears, so one thing they will do is put tubes in her ears when they repair her palate, if not before. This is very typical of children with a cleft palate.

Dr. Grant, her plastic surgeon, was great. He thinks he can close the palate with one surgery, although hers is pretty wide and there are no guaruntees that he won't have to go back in later to complete it. Then, he will do a lip / nose revision when she's 4-5 years old, and finish her gumline repair when she's 8-9 years old. But neither of those will affect her speech like the open palate does. We don't know the date on the palate surgery yet but are looking at late September as a possibility.

I had some pictures to post from the last few days, but am having a bit of difficulty. I'll try to get them up tomorrow, but wanted to at least take a few minutes to let you know how her appointment went today.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

A Few Pictures from the Weekend

1. Shaving Cream Fun!
2. This is NOT my mad face. This is my "intensely involved" face.
3. Okay, I know I have a closet FULL of shoes, but I think I'll wear mama's shoes today!
4. Sliding at the park

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Beautiful Princess

I just had to post these pictures of my princess. She LOVES to play dress-up and this is her favorite of her dress-up clothes. She has been so fascinated with looking at herself in the mirror, and until today I didn't have a mirror at her height. So, she always asked to be picked up so she could see in the mirror. She wanted to look longer than I wanted to hold! Like we're talking, she'd look at herself in the mirror for 10 minutes if I'd hold her that long!
So, we took a little trip to Wal-Mart to buy her a full-length mirror. She danced and sang in front of it forever! It was so cute and sweet. She really is a beautiful princess.

Monday, June 12, 2006

5th day home!

1. All ready for church. Don't I look adorable?
2. Hannah with my parents

Today is Hannah's 5th day home! We stayed at each hotel in China for 5 days, so I keep waiting for her to start throwing her things in the suitcase! But, it definately feels good to NOT be moving on to the next place.

Hannah continues to do well adjusting. My parents came to visit Saturday, and she seemed to really enjoy the visit. It didn't hurt that they brought her a small pool to play in.

Sunday we went to church. We don't usually go twice in a weekend, but Hannah enjoyed the music so much the first time. Once again, she loved listening to the music. She clapped and sang along. After the music, I took her to her Sunday School room. I stayed with her, but I wanted her to start getting used to the room. She enjoyed it, but had a little meltdown when it was time to go. Looking back, even though she seemed to enjoy everything, it was just a little too much, too soon.

Today was our first visit to the adoption clinic. It went very well. Everyone said she was doing great. Her height is in the 25% for children her age and her weight is at the 50%. Hannah didn't enjoy the blood draw (who does?), but recovered very quickly. We will go back to the adoption clinic in about 3 weeks to get the results of the tests and for some developmental testing. She will see her regular pediatrician some time soon after that. We haven't scheduled her appointment at the Cleft Clinic yet, but that should be coming soon too.

Thanks for checking in on us!

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Our First Few Days Home

Here's a few photos from our first few days home.
1. I love my pink boots! (and mom can't figure out why this posted sideways! It's not like that on the card!
2. Anything can double as a microphone!
3. Would you like to hear Mozart or Bethoven?

Hannah is doing well. We are slowly working out the sleep thing. She slept better last night . . I predict we will be on a somewhat normal schedule by early next week. :-) She is playing so well, and even starting to venture into her room alone to play at times for very brief periods. Mostly she goes in her room to get the toys she wants and drags them to whatever room I am in. Right now she has worked very hard to drag her table, two chairs, and 2 baby dolls and a toy phone into the computer room with me! And she is dressed "Toddler Style" (yellow butterfly pajamas, a red jacket, and pink cowboy boots).

I took Hannah to church last night (my church has a Friday night service) and I thought she did really well. She had fallen asleep in the car on the way there, so she wasn't quite her perky self, but everyone was thrilled to meet her . We only stayed the first 25 minutes for the music. Her eyes never left the musicians! She was mesmerized. So many people there have prayed for both of us and have helped in so many ways to make her being here a reality, that it was so special for me to worship in that place with her sitting by my side.

Friday, June 09, 2006


We made it home Wed. night - or Thursday morning in reality. We made it the house sometime after 1:00 a.m. Our flight out of Newark was delayed, which made a long day seem longer. But, it was a blessing too - our flight out of Beijing was delayed too so if the last flight was on time - I'm not sure we would have made it.

Hannah did as well on the planes as can be expected for a 2 year old flying so many hours. She did manage to sleep about 6 hours. We arrived at the Birmingham airport about 11:30 to be greeted by some wonderful friends. It was so special to see some of my closest friends meet Hannah for the first time.

Our time at home has been good, although sleep schedules are WAY off right now.
Hannah slept 7 hours Thursday, but it was between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.!
Oh well, we'll work the sleep out slowly.

Hannah has her first doctor's visit Monday morning at the adoption clinic - so keep us in your prayers for that.

Hannah has adjusted to our home more easily than I could have hoped for. I can only be thankful to her foster family. They may have spoiled her a bit, but they also taught her so many good things. She knows how to play, she has obviously had some kind of consistent routine before and although it's not our routine, she understands that. Mostly she has definately been loved and she knows how to love in return. She wakes up each morning and crawls in my bed and gives me lots of kisses, high 5's, and beautiful smiles.

God has been so very good to us. I'll try to post some pictures of her at home soon.
Right now I have a toddler wanting my attention.
love, DeEtte

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Red Couch Photos

It's a tradition here at the White Swan hotel for families to have their picture taken on one of the red couches in the lobby. So, tonight we dressed Hannah up and took our Red Couch photos. My favorite is her with the red dress by herself with her hands on her hips.

Check back to the blog for updates on Hannah and our life together. I'll try to post more home pictures and updates from time to time. (Not daily though!)
Thanks for following our journey!

Our Last Day

Hannah treated us a little this morning by sleeping later than usual. Her cough is much better, but she is still consistently waking up in the middle of the night. She will cry and scream and become very restless. She will cry out to me and will let me hold her and rock her and will then go back to sleep. In the mornings, she will cry out a little and then come crawl in the bed with me. She'll be so sweet and playful. She'll point over at Beth and when I whisper and motion that she's still sleeping, Hannah will "whisper" in her best 2-year old whisper. It's so cute.

After breakfast, Beth and I took Hannah for a walk and did our last little bit of shopping. In one of the shops, a worker asked us where Hannah was from. When I said that she was from Wuhan, the girl told us her boss was from there. The woman came over and talked to Hannah. She told us there were not many kids that came through from Wuhan and she was so excited. She gave Hannah a little jade bracelet and said it was a gift since she was from the same province. It was so sweet and not a "sales gimmick" because I had already bought and paid for my items. The sales people here are all very nice and friendly, and they are all very good salespeople. They've got this "sell to the adoptive parents" thing down. When a baby gets fussy, they give her a free small toy. They'll take the stroller and push and entertain the baby so parents can shop. And they all say they "give you a very good price. She's so cute - I give you a very good price". I've gotten better as the week has gone on with the bargaining. True to what I'd heard before, the first price quoted is almost never the price they'll sell it for if you're wiling to bargain a little.

We ate lunch in the room and Hannah took a nap. This afternoon we went to the US Consulate for our swearing in ceremony. Basically, about 20-30 families boarded a couple buses and drove 40 minutes to the consulate. We went inside and waited. Imagine that many families with newly adopted children 6 months to about 6 years old. Mostly in the 6 month - 18 month age range. It was a bit chaotic! I was proud of Hannah though. She did really well. Eventually, we were all told to stand and raise our right hands. (Hannah raised both hands with a huge smile!) We were asked if everything we submitted was true - we all said "yes" and that was it! Hannah clapped. Of course, Hannah also clapped as soon as the official came out with the microphone and said "Welcome". Hannah even claps for me when I sing for her. Those of you who have heard me sing may not believe it - but to her, I sing beautifully!!!

We went back to the hotel and then met several other families for dinner at The Cow and Bridge Thai restaurant. Then, it was back to the hotel to finish packing. Hannah is asleep now - which is where I am headed.

This trip has been AMAZING! Hannah is AMAZING! And God's grace throughout this journey is most definately AMAZING! I can never thank you all enough for your love, support, and prayers. I have felt them each day and have seen the answer to those prayers in so very many little and big ways.
Please pray for our travel to go smoothly and for Hannah (and us) to be able to get some rest during the flights- we are leaving our hotel at 7:30 Wed. morning (6:30 Tuesday night for you at home) and will be traveling 24+ hours. And please continue to pray for us as we adjust to life together in our home.
love, DeEtte

Pictures from Monday

1. DeEtte and Hannah with our friends Karen and Quinlynn
2. Beth and Hannah in front of waterfall
3. Just call me "Hollywood!"

Monday, June 05, 2006


I don't know what the deal with the pictures is. I was able to post pictures from yesterday just now. But, now I can't seem to post the pics from tonight. Oh well. Today was a fairly relaxed day. We slept in a little (and Hannah slept much better last night - waking up once but then sleeping the rest of the night) and enjoyed our breakfast buffet. Then, I took Hannah up to the room to play a little. She is really playing well with all the toys now. I had to hang out in the room waiting on a call from my guide who was at my consulate appointment for me. So, Beth took Hannah down to the pool for a while. Then, we ventured down the hall to play with Karen and Quinlynn some more. Hannah and Quinlynn are two "peas in a pod" and will copy each other's every move. They weren't to sure about each other at first, but are now friends. They have these elaborate conversations together. Not in Chinese - but in "toddler talk".

I fed Hannah lunch and put her down for a nap. When she woke up, we met our guide to go shopping. We went to a market off the island where I bought some pearls and jade for her when she is older as well as some DVD's. I paid the same amount for 10 DVD's here that I would have spent on 1 in the U.S.!
Hannah did really well shopping and our guide treated her to an ice cream.
We went back to the hotel and played a while. Tonight, we went on a Riverboat Cruise. It was very relaxing and Hannah loved looking out at the water and the boats. When we passed under the bridge the first time, it scared her a little. But, being the very brave girl she is, she decided it was fun after that. There were several adoptive families on the cruise. I know I'm a little biased - but well, I got the best kid of the bunch! I'm sure their parents believe the same thing - which is just as it should be. Hannah did entertain some of the other families though with her dancing on the top deck of the boat!

We came back to the hotel and Hannah and I walked around the shops a little. Then I put her to bed. Tomorrow we have our "swearing in" ceremony at the consulate and Wednesday we come home! I am blessed beyond measure, a little tired, but very happy. Can't wait to see you all and introduce you to my daughter!
love, DeEtte

Pictures From Yesterday

(Bottom to top)
1. Silly Hannah!
2. Sunbathing Beauty (after the pool)
3. I love noodles! (I know the picture is sideways, but it's the best I can do at the moment)

Sunday, June 04, 2006

A Fun Day!

This morning after breakfast we headed to the zoo. It was very hot and humid, but Hannah enjoyed herself. She imitated the signs for several of the animals we saw. She liked the bears best. At the end, we found a little play area. Hannah and I rode several rides and she loved it. After our last ride, she decided she was not ready to go - so once again she staged her own "sit-in" protest in the amusement park. For some reason, this time other people weren't ready to come try to talk to her. Maybe because it was a zoo so most of the other people there have children too and understand? In fact, one lady commented to Beth that her daughter does the same thing.
We waited on her, and just as we started thinking maybe she could outlast us, it started raining. That got her up and to me in a hurry! We got soaked rushing out of the zoo, but it really felt good after being so hot.

We came back to the hotel and ate lunch. Then, Hannah and I both took about a 2 hour nap. Hannah and I went shopping. I'm going to be in trouble when she's a teenager. She loves new clothes, shoes, and purses!! After that, we decided to try out the pool. Hannah loved it!! She loves being in the water.

We went a couple doors down to play with our new friends Karen and Quinlynn. Karen adopted a 2 year old last week as well. We got to know each other a little online before traveling, and had the same flight from Newark to Beijing. She then went on to a different province, but is now here in Guangzhou. (Since everyone ends in Guangzhou). Hannah and Quinlynn weren't too sure of each other at first, but then started laughing and playing together.

We enjoyed a late dinner at Lucy's, and then did a little more shopping. Hannah went to bed fairly easy. I'm hoping she sleeps better tonight. Last night she did not sleep well at all. But, her cough is a lot better today, so I'm hopefull she'll rest better tonight. She's been in a great mood overall though. She continues to amaze me with the things she picks up. She is understanding a lot more English than I expected after such a short time, even though she is not speaking much. She also loves to be "on the go". If she's ready to go and I'm not, she decides to help me out by bringing me my shoes and bag!
She is also so sweet! It's amazing to watch how much more cuddly and affectionate she has become. When I think about our first day together - it was a good first day. But each day has gotten better and she almost doesn't seem like the same child. Everyone here comments on her smile and she does have a smile that lights up the room. And I get to see it all the time!

Tomorrow morning we are hanging around the hotel. I have my U.S. Consulate Appointment at 10:30. I don't actually go to the consulate - my guide goes for me with all the paperwork I have already filled out. But, I am suppossed to be in my room so she can reach me if there are any questions. Once she calls with the "all-clear", we are free to do whatever we want. We are meeting her later in the afternoon to go to a Jade and Pearl Factory. Then tomorrow night, we have a Riverboat Cruise planned.

Our guide reconfirmed our flights for us today - and we will be flying into Birmingham as planned - at about 9:07 p.m. (barring any delays) on Wednesday night. To me, it will feel good to be home. But to Hannah, it may seem like another hotel. hmm - that won't be 5 star though. No HUGE breakfast buffet, no elevators (she loves pushing the button), no one to come turn our bed down at night and leave chocolate and slippers out for us, but it will be HOME and where we belong. (So, if any of you want to help ease the transition for Hannah by coming and turning my bed down at night and leaving chocolate by my bed . .well, I guess we can work something out!) :-)

okay, I've tried several times to post pictures and I don't know why it's not working. Sorry - but I'm ready to go to bed, so I'll try again tomorrow night.

Lori and Drew - I told Rebecca you said hi. She said she misses your family and that you have beautiful girls!

Jill - I showed Rebecca the pictures of the jewlry you sent and she said we could find them tomorrow at the jade factory, so I'm on the lookout!

Good night!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Medical Exam, Shopping, Bathing, and Playing!

1. Happy Girl!
2. I love to wash my hair
3. What do you think of my new dress?
4. I love my Mrs. Potato Head - hey, is that her arm coming out her nose? Well, I like her this way!

Hannah had a rough night's sleep last night. She woke herself up several times coughing. At about 2:00, she ended up in my bed and slept okay until about 7:00ish. Once she got up and going, she was all smiles and seemed to feel fine.
After breakfast, we went for her medical exam. I had hoped to have pictures of it, but well . . it wasn't really pleasant and I wasn't able to really get pictures. Hannah did not want to get out of the stroller for her visa photo they take right before the exam. She had too, which created a little tantrum. Her visa photo shows a scowl! Then we went a couple doors down for the exam. At one point, she ended up staging her own "sit-in" protest by promptly sitting on the sidewalk and refusing to move and by screaming. I've learned by now, that if you just give her a couple minutes, she'll calm down and we can go on. But, the people passing by on the streets would have none of that. They all wanted to stop and talk to her as she is having this melt-down. It was a little frustrating, because I knew it was making the situation worse. I looked up at our guide and told her that I knew if everyone would leave her alone, she'd be fine in a couple minutes. Our guide was great and tried to run interference for me - telling the people to go on, we were fine. Finally I got her to the exam room. She cried through the whole thing, but did cooperate. Luckily it was short. She weighs 14 kilograms, which I think is right at 30 pounds. She is 91 or 92 cm tall. I haven't figured that in inches yet. Everyone we meet here in Guangzhou first asks her age and then says "oh - she is a big girl".

After the exam, we headed back to the hotel. Hannah and I played in the room a while and then I had a bunch of paperwork to fill out. We went to the playroom and Beth entertained Hannah for me while I did the paperwork with our guide. We went to lunch at a restaurant called "The Cow and Bridge". It's a Thai restaurant and was very good. Hannah really does a good job with eating out. After lunch, I put her down for a nap. We spent the afternoon mostly playing. We went to the play room for a little while, but this time there were other kids there. Before it was just us. Hannah left the babies and little kids alone and went straight for the older boys to try to take away their toys. I don't have to worry about her being picked on - she can hold her own! Later, a little girl, maybe 18 months old, wandered over to Hannah and I. She kept putting her head down on my lap or reaching for a hug. Hannah would have none of that! She became very possessive and climbed in my lap and kissed me. That was a good sign to see. She has been very affectionate this afternoon - climbing in my lap, running for hugs. We went for a walk around the island and I did a little shopping. I got Hannah a couple silk dresses and a couple pairs of shoes. She loves clothes. Her eyes light up everytime I pull something out to put on her. So, tonight, we had a "fashion show" with her new clothes and shoes. Her favorite pair of shoes are the famous "squeaky shoes" I bought her. They mostly have them for younger babies, but I did buy her one pair. Just one. And they were adorable today in the hotel room as she jumped and played and made them squeak. So adorable, that I think her grandparents would love to keep those special shoes at their house for her!! Just kidding, but I do promise not to let her wear them to school next year!

I gave Hannah a bath - she loves to play in the tub and wash her own hair. Then we had dinner. We had ordered a delivery order from Danny's Bagels.
It's been very rainy here the last couple days - so we've stayed close to the hotel.
But I think that's been good. Hannah and I have both needed some "down time". She's relaxed a lot and has generally seemed happy. She consistently uses the signs for "more" and "help" and she verbally says "help" very clearly as well. She's also learning "please" and "up". She's very smart and imitates everything.

Bed time tonight was much easier. She put up a little fuss, but not much. I'm hoping she sleeps through the night and gets a good rest. Tomorrow morning we are going to the zoo, if it's not raining here.
okay, I'm off to bed.
love, DeEtte

Friday, June 02, 2006

Safely in Guangzhou

Well, we made it to Guangzhou and Hannah is asleep now as I'm typing this. First of all, thanks for the many prayers and wishes and comments on the blog. I can finally pull it up here at the White Swan Hotel. While I don't have time to respond to all the messages - know how much I appreciate them and you!!

Last night, we went to a local restaurant with our guide for "hotpot" - a traditioanl meal of Wuhan. It was very good. Hannah loved it. She picked up the chopsticks and ate like a pro for the first couple bites. Then, she did what any 2 year old would do: she held the chopsticks in one hand and picked her food up with the other hand to eat!! We walked around a little and then headed back to our hotel. Hannah went to sleep fairly easy and slep a little later than normal this morning. Good thing - because she never really got a nap in today. When she woke up, she crawled into my bed and stayed there beside me for a little while.

After breakfast we headed to the Civil Affairs Office to pick up Hannah's passport. It was a short, sweet little ceremoney and then we were off to the airport. I got a little teary-eyed driving through Wuhan the last time. We said good-bye to Jordan at the airport and he had brought Hannah a little gift. He has been great. Hannah did really well on the flight. It was only an hour and 20 minutes - but she did great until the last 10 minutes because she wanted the seat belt OFF. She was perfectly happy having it on the rest of the flight when it didn't really matter. Anyway, I was pleased with her first plane flight. I had packed her a little backpack with toys for the flight. She adores the backpack (Thanks Denise!) and doesn't really like to take it off. But she didn't need the toys for the flight. She was completely amused by taking wet wipes and wiping herself, me, Beth, the tray of her seat, and whatever else was in reach.

Hannah has been somewhat grumpy this afternoon. But, that's what no nap does. I tried to put her down when we got to the hotel and she slept about 10 minutes and woke herself up coughing. She seems fine as long as she's up playing, but is coughing a lot when she lays down. We decided to go to dinner at Lucy's - an American Cafe. She loved the french fries and the ice cream we had for dessert. She was so dissapointed when the ice-cream was gone - that she decided to lick the plate! We went back to our hotel and found the playroom and let her play for a while. Then, we went to get ready for bed. She fought bedtime tonight pretty hard - crying and screaming. It's been a tough day for her - her first plane ride, no nap, a new hotel, a new van and guide. She's seemed very vigilant today about where I am and also where Beth is.
She wasn't too excited to see our new guide, Rebecca. Rebecca is great and I'm sure Hannah will warm up to her. I just think she was looking for Jordan - our old guide. So many changes in her little life in such a short time. You can pray that her cold improves so that she can get some good rest. I think it will do wonders for her.

We are calling Hannah by her name "Hannah" now, mixed with "Xiu Xiu" and "Hannah Xiu". She's not consistent at responding to Hannah, but is starting to.
She imitates EVERYTHING she sees me do. I put deoderant on this morning, and there's this little girl standing next to me pulling up her shirt and motioning for her to have some! Getting her to brush her teeth has been no problem once I figured out I just needed to brush mine in her sight and she'd come running for her toothbrush!

She is an amazing child! I really wish I could get a good picture of her "pout" that she is becoming famous for. It's the "I'm not REALLY mad, but I want you think I am" pout and it's the funniest I've ever seen. (And y'all know that as a preschool teacher - I've seen lots of pouts). Hers really is the funniest! But, when the camera comes out, the pout is over.

Tomorrow we meet our guide at 9:00 a.m. to go for Hannah's medical exam. Then we will return to the room to go over some paperwork things. We may go shopping off the island tomorrow afternoon.

Okay, I'm off to bed. Later!
love, DeEtte

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Visit to Yellow Crane Tower

This morning, Hannah woke up all smiles and giggles and ready to play. Beth had bought her a toy phone last night that lights up and talks and plays music. (We're hoping having it decreases her interest in resetting our alarm clark each night - this girl loves buttons!). Hannah played with it for a long time, handing the phone to us and saying "ello", "eye, eye" (hello, bye-bye). We headed down for breakfast. She is loving the watermelon here. We went back up to play a while and then met our guide for a visit to the Yellow Crane Tower. It is one of the famous sights of Wuhan. All these pictures are from there. I don't know why some of them posted twice - but I'm happy they posted so I'm not messing with them. The view of the city from atop the tower was great. You can see a Christian Church in the background. Hannah's orphanage is next to the church - although you can't really see it in these pictures. Jordan told us that the church was home to Wuhan's first orphanage back before 1945. He said the government stepped in and started providing social welfare after that point.
There were MANY steps to climb up and town at the tower and Hannah is quite good with steps. She loved looking out over the city. I was struck with a little sadness while holding her as I realized she was looking out over her city and tomorrow, we will be leaving. I've heard other families describe the bittersweetness of leaving their child's birth city, but didn't really understand that until now. I'm ready to head to Guangzhou and then home with my daughter. She will have many more opportunities to become the person God has created her to be. And yet - it is a bit sad to think of her leaving this culture and city. But, I'm trying to learn and soak up as much as possible, so that I'll have stories to share with her when she's older.
Hannah got a little restless and whiney at the end of our trip. We headed back to the hotel for lunch (Macaroni and Cheese) and a nap. She is sleeping now. I'm going to go try to pack up some while she is sleeping. Our guide is coming over this afternoon to give us the schedule for tomorrow and to take us to a local restaurant so we can sample some "hotpot" - a dish that is very popular here in Wuhan. I don't know when I'll update again - some time after I get to Guangzhou. Tomorrw we pick up Hannah's passport at the Civil Affairs office and tomorrow afternoon we fly out.