Monday, July 23, 2012

Day 8 Together- Guangzhou Day 2

On Sunday, we went down for breakfast and then headed to the lobby at 10 a.m. to head to the Liwan plaza for shopping.  Our guide said she was taking us to a place where Chinese people love to go and where not many others know about or go to.   I can't lie...the whole night before and morning of I was thinking-  please God, don't let Lena have another tantrum or meltdown in public like the last time we went shopping in Fuzhou.  I probably tossed and turned over it even.   Well- I did get one answer to prayer.  The meltdown didn't happen in the shopping center.  It happened on the bus to the shopping center!   Thankfully we were surrounded by adoptive families who understand better than anyone what Lena and our family is going through.   Again though- I think they were thinking...glad it isn't our child, I feel so sad for that sweet little girl, or I feel so bad for that family- that would be so hard.   It was loud and it lasted about the whole bus ride.  It was with Rick this time.  Rick didn't give in and pass her off- surely that would have probably stopped the tantrum.  Some people may think this is mean or wrong, but I really think it is helping her to learn very quickly that we will not give in when she has a fit, tantrum, or meltdown.   We will be there for her, continue to love on her, and get through it together.   Kids are SMART!   She is slowly starting to realize- this isn't going to work with these people and they still love me no matter what.

 This was our first day trying out the stroller.  She didn't like it at first, but she got used to it pretty quickly and then liked it!

 Bus ride to the shopping plaza.

By the time it was time to get off the bus, she had worn herself out.  She was too tired to have another meltdown!  Thank the Lord!   :)   We got her in the stroller and walking on her own holding onto our hand today too which was nice because all that carrying had my hips hurting.  This is a big step for her!  We went inside the shopping center- there were two parts or buildings to go into.  One was mainly for jewelry.  I am not sure I have ever seen this many jewelry shops all in one building- it was at least four floors high and each floor was a circle of shops full of jewelry- pearls, jade, amber, you name it!   We got Lena some gifts for when she is older.  We like to try and get each of our adopted children a gift from their country for each year we celebrate their gotcha day until they are an adult. 
 Bags and bags of pearls! There are three qualities and we learned all about that.  We went with the middle grade quality for ours because the top quality was too expensive!
 Lena in the pearl store- she seemed to enjoy looking at the jewelry...typical girl, I guess! :)
 Heather and her beautiful first child.  They are from Washington state.
 Justin and his daughter, Piper- the cute one Evan likes playing with.  They are from Illinois.
 James and his daughter from Texas.
 Our friend, Kristi from Illinois and her daughter Chloe shopping in the pearl store for wedding gifts for SOMEDAY! :)

 They also had shops with marble and different stones- huge ones too!
One of hundreds of jewelry shops.

After spending enough time in the jewelry side, we headed over to the other side where we got some traditional Chinese dresses for Lena in various sizes, some Disney dvds and a Happy Goat dvd series, which is a very popular cartoon series here in China- Lena may or may not have seen it before.  She grabbed it pretty quick like she knew what it was.  We also went out to this street to look for something to eat quick and it was packed full of Chinese people and things for sale.  We didn't have any luck finding a place we could get food quickly, but we did find some ice cream cups and Lena LOVED her ice cream.  She made quite a mess, but she is very independent and wanted every little bit of it! :)   Another food item to add to her 'like' list. :)   I am down with that since it is one of my favorite foods as well.

 The clothing store where we got a few Traditional Chinese outfits for Lena and a traditional Chinese shirt for Rick.

 These are from the neat street we spent a few minutes on behind the shopping plaza.  We got ice cream on this street.

It was then time to meet the families and head back onto the bus to go back to the hotel for nap time.   During nap time, I took a taxi with Heidi and her daughter Kennedy and with Tammy and her daughter to Shamian Island.  Many adoptive families used to stay at one of two hotels on the island, but one is now closed for updating.   Now a majority of the families are staying off the island.   The island is a peaceful place- much quieter than the city.   There is a beautiful park that runs through the middle of it, with the cutest statues.   There are many shops as well that adoptive families used to love supporting.  Sadly, many of them have had to downsize or close their doors.   Not knowing where we were going, we went to two different stores and realized that we had gotten taken advantage of at the first shop, even after bargaining.   The second shop was not so bad.   We go back there on Wednesday and we now know which shops we should go to and which shop we should not!  I am so glad I went because I don't think our short time there on Wednesday will be enough.  Getting a cab back was a bit more difficult and it was raining, but we finally managed to get one.  When we got back, we had to get our families and head right to the lobby for dinner.  We went to a Mexican restaurant called Tekila to have dinner with a bunch of families from our Dossier To China group.   Our table seemed to have been forgotten about for ordering so we got our food last and quite a bit after everyone else, but the food was very good and we had a great time hanging out with all the wonderful families from our agency group and meeting some new families as well, including one family who is from a suburb of Chicago (used to be from the Madison area even) and who are adopting a sweet boy I was very familiar with and best friends to a little boy I am in love with. :)    I am hoping they might get to meet him when they go to visit their son's orphanage on Thursday.   I am so excited for them!

Taxi ride to Shamian Island

 We made it to Shamian Island! We could not have walked there from the Garden Hotel. :(   I believe you can walk there from the Holiday Inn Shifu though!
 The beautiful park that runs through the middle of the island- I will take a lot more pictures of this on Wednesday!

It is very common for newly married couples or young couples to get their pictures taken on the island.

From Tekila, it was back to the hotel where we waited for our laundry to come that we had sent out.  While Rick went for a run, Evan, Lena, and I watched part of Dumbo.  Lena LOVED the animals! Rick and Evan then went down to the pool to swim.  Lena and I hung out for awhile in the room.   Then it was time for bed...another day done and another day closer to going home!

 Watching a new movie we bought- Dumbo! :)

1 comment:

  1. Brooke - you guys look like you are doing great! You are SO right to hold your ground with little Lena. Our little Abby was (and still is) so strong-willed and smart! I can only imagine what it would have been like if we would have "given in" so many times when we were tempted to. Praying for you glad to hear that you are all healthy and enjoying your trip! Um, and as for a run - your husband is one brave man!! I love to run, but never, never attempted it in China! :-)
    Nikki :-)