Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Daddy Daughter Day

Lily and I had a great Daddy Daughter Day today while Mommy rested. We took a tour with some of the other families and went to a Buddhist Temple, an Art Museum, and a Market. Lily was such a great little girl today. She didn't fuss at all, fell asleep in my arms for a little while, and relaxed in the stroller. Afterwards, Mommy, Lily, and I went to the Swan Room (kids' playroom in the hotel) for a little playtime and then out to dinner. It was a great day.

Monday, February 22, 2010

It's official...

After getting Lily yesterday, we went back to Provincial Civil Affairs Office today to be submit our adoption registration and notarization. After being interviewed by the Registry Official and then by the Notary, Lily is now officially ours.

Afterwards, we went to Carrefore marketplace, which is like a crazy version of Wal-Mart. We were told we had 70 minutes, to which I scoffed like that was an eternity. Well, about 60 minutes in, we had a cart and a half full of stuff and only half our list crossed off. We bailed on some unnecessary items, took off for the formula aisle, and got back to the bus.

Tomorrow afternoon we head to the Passport Agency to apply for Lily's Chinese passport.

So far, Lily has eaten well and slept almost 10 hours last night. She is napping right now and will have another bottle when she wakes up. She was a little cautious yesterday and cried just a bit, but today she has been laughing and smiling with us a lot. This is a true blessing.

I am having difficulty updating pictures to the blog today, so please check our Facebook pages. All the pictures are on my page (Jack), but I will set the pictures to be viewed by Catherine's friends as well. Now...time to update our health insurance plan at work!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Here's the baby!

The bus leaves in 10 minutes!

This is it, no turning back now. We leave for the Civil Affairs Office in 10 minutes. That is where the Nannies and Orphanage Director are meeting us with our Lily. The next time you see this blog, it will no longer be about "the completion of a family", but rather "a family complete"!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

We made it to Guangzhou! Tomorrow is Gotcha Day!

We made it to the White Swan hotel in Guangzhou. We didn't get in until about 8:30pm, so we got our keys, ordered Room Service, and started unpacking. Tonight is our last sleep before we get our Lily tomorrow!! Call the Dr., Catherine is officially 10 centimeters dialated and she's ready to push.

Friday, February 19, 2010

One More Sleep..............

...............until sweet Lily is in my arms!!! After all these years of waiting and wondering and dreaming, I can't believe it is tomorrow.

Our time in Hong Kong reminded me a lot of our honeymoon in London. Lots of walking, people watching, doing some touristy things, shopping, and talking and laughing with each other. There is no cell phone, no Paige :(, no regular phone, no tv, etc. to interrupt's just been us. And you know what? We still "like" each other over 8 years of marriage!

So we are more than ready for a little interruption named Lily!

Our agency guide, will be picking us up at our hotel in Hong Kong this afternoon at 2:30pm and then we stop at another hotel to pick up our remaining travel group, and then we leave via bus for Guangzhou, China. This is where we will remain the rest of our time in China. The bus ride is estimated to be 2 1/2 to 3 hours. And considering the bus is all adopting parents from overseas, we will not be pushed, shoved, or tripped the whole time! :)

First half of our journey is complete, now come on 2nd half! We are so so close to you, Lily! We are coming my sweetheart, sleep well tonight!

Last full day in Hong Kong

So, Catherine spent the morning resting while I went out and walked the town taking pictures. I hit the promenade walk overlooking Victoria Harbour, Canton Road, Kowloon Park, and a few other spots. I took in a traditional Chinese Dragon demonstration along the way. It was a cool morning. Catherine and I went out in the afternoon and hit the Ladies Market in Mong Kok. We picked up a few souvenirs, had some dinner, and called it a day. Tomorrow we pack up and head to Guangzhou! Below are a few pictures from today. The first and third pictures are taken from our hotel room!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Some pics of our trip

Is it possible that all 1 billion people in China are in Hong Kong this week?

Here are two videos of me just to show you how crowded everything is. I feel like I'm doing a documentary, but it's fun. The first is from Disney yesterday and the second is from the tram to Victoria Peak today.

We had a great day today. We started the morning off with a phone call to Paige, who we miss more than words can express. A couple of more hours of sleep and then a couple of Egg McMuffins later (one each, thank you) and we were off. We headed to the Star Ferry and went across the harbor to Hong Kong Island. We took the tram up to the top of Victoria Peak. It was chilly and overcast but still much better than yesterday's weather. Then we went to Stanley Market. Catherine is pretty exhausted, but still loving every minute of it. I'm having a blast, too. Only two more days in Hong Kong and three more sleeps until until we get Lily!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Day 1...Disney!

OK, OK, before you bash us, let me set the record straight. We had not intended to go to Hong Kong Disneyland until our last day after having seen all the sights. Well, the weather today was horrible...45 and rainy. The rep from our agency that's here in HK said it was the worst day of the winter. Since we couldn't see the top of Victoria Peak from the bottom, we figured we couldn't see the bottom from the top. So, in hopes of getting clearer skies tomorrow, we went to Disney today (thank you Scott and Ellen!).

For those who don't know, it's Chinese New Year. If you've ever been to the Magic Kingdom in Orlando for New Year's, you know how bad it is. Well, this is WORSE...MUCH, MUCH WORSE! I'm not kidding. The place was packed and apparently the Chinese culture is to push and shove to get where you want to be. It was interesting to see HK Disneyland, but it was chaos. I plan to upload a video later, but for now, you'll have to enjoy this photo.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

We made it to Hong Kong!!

It took 26 hours of traveling, 2 flights totalling 18+ hours, 11,000 or so miles and we are finally here. We are missing our little girl, Paige, but we are excited to get our other little girl, Lily, on Sunday. Now, time to get some sleep and hit the town tomorrow.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Our bags are packed, all the preparations are complete! Jack & I finally leave today for Hong Kong. We will go to Guangzhou, China on Saturday and meet Lily on Sunday, Feb.21!

Paige is staying home with both sets of grandparents and school to keep her busy. But I couldn't help but notice her head hanging a little low yesterday :(

Jack and I can't wait to really take in Hong Kong and relax and have fun.......and then really try to remember as much as we can about China so we can tell Lily about her "birth" into our family..........but then the mom & dad in us, wants the trip to go so fast, so we can get back to Paige and have both our girls in our arms!

During the next 3 weeks, if you have a spare minute after 11:30am m-f, could you give Paige a call, please? I just know she loves getting phone calls!

That's all from now in the US of A, will touch base once we sleep a bit in Hong Kong!

love to you all!

Saturday, February 06, 2010

ONE Month From Tonight.......

I will be able to hold BOTH of these angels at the same time, in the same country, same earth, same time zone, same EVERYTHING for as long as God lets me!!!!! How totally lucky am I?!?!

After all these years, months, weeks, days, and minutes of waiting - just ONE more month and my dream comes true!

We leave February 15th and return March 6th! Jack & I are having a little bit of a 2nd honeymoon in Hong Kong for a couple of nights, then we meet up with our group on Feb. 20th......take a bus ride from Hong Kong to Guangzhou, China ( I was personally told by our Adoption Agency co-owner and operator, no poop in bus only pee :) )

Then our Gao Ai Qun (Lily's Chinese name) will be brought to us the NEXT day, Feb. 21st! So if it rains where you are on that day, those are my tears of happiness coming down from heaven......

I am going to my best try not to cry, because I don't want to scare Lily, but I can't make any guarantees!

Thank you to all of you who have prayed for our family for all this time....we love you all!