Precious itty bitty dumpling was up at 5:00am this morning. Patrick and I both got to spend some time with her before her brother and sister woke up. We had to be up early and ready to meet our guide Mary at 8:30am. Breakfast went the same as yesterday. Havi went searching for her foster mom. She actually walked Patrick right out the front of the hotel! She did have more to eat. So that was a plus.
We had an hour and a half drive to the ancient city of Pingyao, which is over 600 years old. Havi fell asleep about 30 minutes into the drive...standing straight up and looking out the window. If you haven't traveled in China with little ones, don't be alarmed at that previous statement. There are no child restraint seats here, unless you count the arms of an adult.
Anyway, we finally made it, and the very blatant staring began. Patrick wore Havi in the carrier so I could be free to take photos.
We walked up to the top of the city wall. There are 6 gates to the city, resembling a tortoise: one in the north, one in the south, and two in both the east and the west walls. The tortoise symbolizes longevity.
The bigger dumplings had fun looking outside the city walls.
Then we walked along the city streets. Notice the staring as Patrick fed Havi snacks and water. Admittedly, they probably don't see many men carrying babies. Still, we garnered a lot of attention. She did great in the carrier, by the way. We walked along one street that used to have 22 banks. Our guide Mary called it the ancient Chinese version of Wall Street.
Inside one of the bank courtyards, Madeline thought it was time for a photo shoot.
There are no cars along most of the streets in Pingyao. Motorized bikes are a very popular mode of transportation here and all of China, for that matter.
Lanterns line the streets and are very pretty when lit up at night.
As we were heading out, I spotted a few Chinese children out on the street.
It was a lovely trip. On the way back, Havi was very loud and animated. She was such a hoot. We arrived back at the hotel around 2:30pm. Surprise surprise, Patrick headed out to grab lunch for all of us while we hung out in the room. Poor poor baby girl grieved hard again, reaching at the door for her foster mom. Then she was tapping at the window again and actually fell asleep with her hand still clinging to it. She napped for about an hour, and when she woke up, she was so very sad. After holding her and rocking her for about an hour, the sobbing began again. She stopped crying when Caleb played Andrea Bocelli on his iPhone. Then she started eating and perked right up.
Now this might be too much information for most of ya'll, but if you're a part of the adoption community, you'll understand my excitement when I tell you this next bit of news. I have to stop and give props to my little girl (and mama too) because this newly adopted, grieving 18 month old actually did her business in the potty twice today!!! I'm serious people. I'm so proud of her. How did she do it you might ask? I held her like the Chinese people do, behind their kids' knees...but over a western potty. Yep. She's pretty awesome.
Well, the night ended with lots of noodles, hot and cold, bubbles, lollipops, and smiles. She went to bed like a champ too, climbed right into our bed and laid down with us and fell asleep.
Tomorrow is a big day. We will head to either the Jinci Temple (if the weather cooperates) or a museum (if it doesn't) in the morning and then to the orphanage and Havi's finding spot in the afternoon. We will also have an opportunity to meet with the foster family. We haven't decided yet which one of us will go and who will stay back with Havi. It's so obvious their love for her. She was so well taken care of. She is constantly feeding us and sharing her food with us and smiles and laughs easily. She is such a joy. We are so very much in love with her and are so grateful for all the love her foster family showed her for the first 18 months of her life.