We got to the beach Thursday and the beach and pool were a smashing success! Rylee loved the water and even the sand and waves of the ocean! Friday the other family arrived and Rylee grabbed right on to the 5 - almost 6- year old girls, but essentially ignored the older girl that Rylee actually knows. She wouldn't really talk to her or even look at her and I didn't want her feelings to be hurt because of this. Finally I pulled Rylee aside and asked her if she remembered this person. She said "Sure Mama, sure I do" I said "Why don't you say hello to her? She has missed you and wanted to see you? Can you say Hi to her?" Rylee said "Who dis person Mama? Where this friend?" So I pointed to her (she was basically right in front of us) and Rylee said "I don't see her, she not here!" (pretending to not see her) So I told her that I thought she might be worried that she was going to go with this friend, but she would always stay with Mama. I told her that she could talk to her friend and play with her friend and that it was okay, she was not going back to China, she was staying with Mama! She finally said okay and went over by her friend. She interacted with her just a little during the two days and had a whole lot of fun learning to swim and playing with the other girls.
After they left and I had a chance to talk with Rylee about it I asked her if she remembered her friend. She said "Sure I do Mama, she take care of me just a little bit - like a tiny baby bit. She take me to play en park! She tell stories and sing. I not sing though cuz I just a little bit baby" "Lots I take care of myself China Mama" I asked her if she liked this friend and was glad to see her. Rylee said "Sure Mama I like her, she my friend, I stay Mama I LOVE you Mama! In China I big, I cook myself an make congee with banana. I have milk 1 cup an 1 cup water an mix it like this, I do it myself" she mimics stirring "Dis really good Mama!", surprised I said "You drank milk in China? Why don't you drink milk here?" Her answer - "You don't make 1 cup milk and 1 cup water Mama, dis bery yummy like dis!" I asked her what else she likes and she told me "Banana cookies! and noodles an mix vegbles together Mama dis bery yummy too!" (she does not eat veggies at all except corn!) "En soups mama, I like soups and flies (means rice)!
Some things we learned this weekend:
- The orphanage had a cow and the kids had fresh milk every day.
- Rylee was called by another name that means "Little Dragon or Dragon Baby", how appropriate is that!!!!
- She was able to roam the orphanage unattended and pretty much could do whatever she wanted. (this we had already figured out)
- Rylee was not as bossy in China (but given the nickname???)
- Rylee is an excellent actress (this we had already figured out also)
- Rylee likes milk (big shock to me)
- The kids had meat twice a week
- The orphanage grows their own vegetables
- Rylee had been in school for a couple of years and all the kids walked there by themselves
- In school they were treated differently because they did not have families
I am so very thankful to our new friends for giving us a glimps into our daughters past. What a blessing to be able to have this part of Rylee's past and to share it with her! Below are a few pictures from our trip...