Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!!

First a big Happy Birthday to our granddaughter Elyse and one of Hanna's best friends from Michigan - Sammie - we love you both and hope your Birthday's are wonderful!

Today we visited Teng Wang Villa and got to experience what it is like to be a celebrity! We had crowds of people following us everywhere we went. They wanted to touch Hanna, feel her hair, test out the springiness of her curls, hug her, kiss her and take pictures with her or with us. There were many schools age children having tours of the pavilion today and a couple of them around Hanna's age wanted to talk to us. The were so cute and kept saying "Hello" and "Nice to meet you" and then the would giggle and whisper to each other and then say "Hello" again. They were very curious about Hanna, so I asked them if they wanted a photo with Hanna, suddenly about 20 of them appeared all jostling for a spot in the photo. They then followed us - almost the entire class, until we got into the narrow stairway and someone called them back.

After that group there was a group of older students from something called Blue Sky Institute, there with their teacher. They also followed us and kept telling us how beautiful Hanna was and first one and then the other, and then another and then part of the group and then the next part of the group wanted photo after photo with Hanna, Hanna and I, or all of us. They followed us everywhere we went asking questions and wanting to tell us things about themselves. Then they wanted to know where we lived in Nanchang, I just knew they would show up here and want to hang out with us some more. They really were very nice, but it is definitely something we are not used to! There are some nice gardens surrounding the pavilion and we enjoyed walking in them and getting away from all the stares for a while. Rylee was a big Baba's girl today and was pretty quite most of the day. I think the crowds of people following us around was a little intimidating. I thought it was a good sign though that she wanted us to hold her and would move closer to us whenever strangers were around. So many people stop and ask us about Rylee. Usually they are asking if she is Chinese, I say yes and then that always brings much discussion among the group. Sometimes they look like they are trying to understand how we ended up with a daughter that doesn't look like us, sometimes they give us big smiles and nods. We asked our guide about this and she said that people that are local understand adoption because they see many families with the babies, but visitors from smaller cities don't necessarily know there is such a thing as adoption and they want to know how we got a Chinese baby. Rylee is warming up to us really well and getting more comfortable with us. She had many more smiles when we got away from all the people.

Our guide doesn't seem to understand silliness that much. Yesterday when we were in People's Park, Hanna was practicing her trotting, canter and gallop. Finally Wanda said "What that for? What purpose for that?" Ummm... I guess the purpose would be for fun??? Apparently children in Nanchang don't run around pretending they are horses! And then today Hanna posed in her duck walk pose and Wanda again looked really confused! Finally she asked us "What that? Why she do that?" We just couldn't help but laugh, she just couldn't see why you would do such a thing. We tried to explain and finally she just shook her head and walked away from us while we were still laughing. Poor women is probably trying to figure out what strange thing we are going to turn Rylee into - lol!!!

Rylee is not quite sure what to do with me yet. She is much more accepting of affection, but not initiating it much. Sleep time is key for us and it seems to be when I make the most progress. She was so tired at nap time that I held her and rocked her close to me so that she could hear my heart beating. When she fell asleep I laid her down and rubbed her back and her arms and snuggled next to her. When she woke up she was happy to see all of us and came to me often. At bed time tonight she tossed and turned. She would pull my hand over and put it on her back, but then she would push it away. Then she would pull me back and put my hand on her forehead (I have been putting her to sleep by rubbing her temples and across her forehead gently) and then she would push me away. Then she would pull me back and then push me away, and so on. Finally she let me hold on to her feet. After a while she reached out and held my hand and touched my face some. A while later she moved over to lay on me where she could hear my heart beat. There is so much going on inside that little person right now, and she is doing amazingly so well.

When we were in the elevator last night there was a group of people heading up to the hotel bar and we were all crammed in together. They started talking to me (I was holding Rylee) and the only thing I understood was Chinese National and they were pointing at Rylee. I said "yes", they talked to each other until a man in the middle placed his hands together, bowed his head then stood up looking directly at me and gently said "thank you!". I choked up because how could I explain to someone that does not speak my language that it is I who is so very thankful? I didn't know what to do, so I bowed my head back and could only whisper "you are welcome" with tears brimming my eyes...


  1. Oh my gosh. What a moment for you and Rylee when that man bowed in front of you and said Thank you! Oh I would be the same as you were.

    Oh God it is US who should thank them! Wow.....what a powerful moment in time that you will NEVER forget!!!! Awesome.


  2. Thank you for these wonderful posts from China. My 18-month-old daughter is also from Xinyu, and it brings back many memories to read your blog and see your photos. The woman holding Rylee on Gotcha Day was the same woman who handed Caia to me in February. Rylee is beautiful, and it sounds like she's adjusting wonderfully. I wish you well!

  3. Hey Guys, it looks like everything is going well I just showed sammie all the pics. She is asking alot of questions. She wants me to tell Hanna her sister is cute!!! Be safe and have a good trip home. I'm sure youre all very tired. Love Karen and Sammie thanks for the Happy Birthday note!!!


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