Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Passing time between paperwork

Once we finally had our dear Riley there was lots of paperwork...and lots of time in between. I often didn't take too many photos of the paperwork part mostly because I had too much to carry!
We brought along Nick's DVD player which was such a life saver! The two of them clicked immediantly as you can see.

First meal out at an Italian Restaurant in our Chinese Hotel!

We even had entertainment! The very first song they sang was Country Road by John Denver...which just so happens to be Nick's fav song! If only he knew just how crazy it was to hear this half way around the world in China!


My one photo of the long list of paperwork.

I just told Riley not to eat the crayon and she gave me this look as she was teasing me! Oh, my. I'm gonna have my hands full!

Big bro watching out for his little sis. He thought the road was too twisty!

Play room in the hotel!

Nick put his braclet on Riley...ahhh sharing! How long will this last?

Tickle time! Both of them LOVE to be tickled...the sound of laughter really heals the heart.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Riley's Gotcha Day!

Everyone is SO excited that this is finally the day they get to meet their beautiful child! It's a very strange feeling knowing that soon we'll be holding Riley.
Bus ride to meet our children! See Ted in the back?

Nick deep in thought. That amazing mind of his.

Here she is!!!
We were told that we all will probably need to wait anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour to meet our child, but the Orphange Officer was waiting with Riley on the steps!!!


Finally get to hold her in my arms!!! I was so surprised and VERY HAPPY that she didn't turn me away.

Riley's proud new brother.

The orphange gave us a very special album recording Riley's life, something that will be very special for her to view in years to come.
The orphange officer gaves us back our gifts that we mailed to Riley in May. We sent her a photo album with all of our pictures, and it was well worn and used! It brought tears to my eyes knowing that they cared enough to show her this album so often so she would know us. She immediantly grabbed for the album when she saw it and held it close.

One of the CCAI Families, Aaron, video taped our meeting while our CCAI Guide, Rita looked over Riley's wonderful album.

My heart melted watching my son's excitment to finally met his new sister! There is no experience in life that will ever compare.

We needed our photo taken for the official documents.

Everyone was filled with so much joy and totally exhaused on the bus ride back to the hotel.
What a morning!!! We got her!!!

Zhengzhou Bound... Riley's hometown!

We flew from Beijing to Zhengzhou. Zhengzhou is the town where our daughter's orphanage is located. We get to unpack and rest, and then tomorrow morning we go to met RILEY!
Zhengzhou Airport

Zhengzhou Airport Security...more fun

Our luggage carrier...a.k.a Dad

Every hotel had a safe in our room where we kept all our important documents (we had a lot of them on this trip!) and of course our cash.

Our entire bathroom was marble!

We loved our nice big windows!

The view outside our window.

Waiting for dinner with our families...Nick was passing time drawing.

Nick's friend Lily.

My Ted.

Nick and I went exploring and found this awesome hallway in the hotel.

This place is FILLED with marble EVERYWHERE! It sort of reminded me of a cruise ship! Our room looked fantastic, but there was a lot of water damage everywhere (ha...like a cruise ship) and had a very musty smell.

I think this is what they mean by a Bull in a China Shop!!! I was holding my breath that he didn't break anything...then I looked at the price tags, and picked him up and quickly carried him out! Ha

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Great Wall

Our sleeping was still very messed up...naturally...our bodies were still 12 hours behind. We went to bed around 7:30 pm after the Acrobatics Show the night before, and we all awoke around 3:00 am. Thankfully breakfast started at 5:30 am! The breakfast had everything you could imagine!
Lots and lots of Western foods. We ate familiar foods, but ventured out and tasted lots of the local cuisine as well.
Everyone loaded onto the tour bus excited to see The Great Wall! It was about an hour and 15 minute drive from our hotel to The Great Wall. As we left the city limits of Beijing the mountains got larger and larger. So exciting!
Full bellies and the drive made many us of us sleepy...including Ted. That didn't last for long because Teddy has ALWAYS wanted to go and see The Great Wall! He could hardly contain himself...yeah, didn't get a picture of him jumping around!

The Great Wall Tour Entrance.

Part of our CCAI Family Group! Nick was ready to GO! I love Lilly's pretty little pose.

What an amazing site!

Okay, yes, this is totally amazing, but I have to say that I sort of imagined a serene and peaceful sound while viewing  such an unbelievable site...but that is NOT what it was like. A major highway ran right under the wall, and EVERYONE blew their horns...constantly! Also, it was about 100 degrees and very, very humid.

Nick was so excite to get started! I love this photo. Look at our 4 year old, the world traveler!

Yes, they sold ice cream! We figured he needed the sugar to climb these steps! Some of the steps were very, very high, about 18 inches or more. They were also very worn, so everything was uneven. Did I mention it was stifling HOT?! Nick basically had to crawl up some of the steps because they were too high. The step were very dusty because of lack of rain, so Nick was covered in layer of gray dust....but that didn't stop him!

Ted stopping for a break. He took a TON of photos!

Nick was a climbing maniac! We could not stop him! I had no idea he loved to climb so much. We had to remind him that we have to go back the way we came, and he needed to save his energy. This photo shows how upset he was that he had to turn around. Not to mention that EVERY Chinese person wanted to touch him and take a photograph of him! He was pretty irritated with all the attention. It was like he was a famous movie star!

A view from one of the look outs. This is one of my fav photos.
Nick and I turned around to met with the rest of the group while Ted climbed (and I mean, CLIMBED) to the next look out. Nick did just as good climbing down as he did up!

Acrobatics Show

We had a very FULL day of tours, we were tired from only sleeping a few hours...okay, EXHAUSTED, andhot and grumpy, but everyone knew that the kids were super excited to see the Acrobatics Show, so we pushed forward knowing that sleep would be coming shortly!
Waiting for the show to start.

Once it started it was totally amazing! Nick could not stop watching. He loved it! I tough the same, but could not stop myself from nodding off. Found out that other parents did the same! Haha

Everything was perfect!Great Job!