17 posts categorized "China 2006"

September 02, 2006

The Famous Red Couch

Red_couch_framed We had Maddy's medical exam at the clinic on Shamian Island today so we took the opportunity to visit the White Swan hotel and get a picture of the girls on the famous red couch.  We didn't do this when we adopted Gwen since our agency never stays at the White Swan but we promised ourselves that we'd do it when we retured someday.  That someday was today!

There are several of these red sofas in the hotel and we spent the better part of an hour searching for The One only to learn that they're all the same.   

The tradition is for adoptive families to plunk their new babies onto this velvet throne and get a group photo of all of the screaming infants.  There's something about sitting on this that sucks the happiness out of the children since I don't think I've ever seen a baby smile in any of the Red Couch pictures.  Our girls are further proof of this.

Madeline pics


On Maddy's adoption day, we received a photo album with about 30 pictures of Maddy at various ages.  This is such a treasure and we're so grateful to her orphanage for taking these pictures and giving them to her new family.   

The pictures on the left are some of the pictures we received.   They're arranged in age sequence and you can view the age by holding your cursor over the picture.  Click the image to see the full size picture. 

The picture in the upper left corner is the earliest picture we have of Madeline.  It's dated 2004/8 and was probably taken very soon after she was found (she was found on 7/31 -- her birthday).  She was so tiny..... just four pounds.

She's smiling in so many of these pictures.  She's a very happy little girl! 

The last picture was taken just one week before she joined our family.

September 01, 2006

How's this for enthusiasm?

Carseat Andrew here, filling in for Donna for a moment.  She mentioned a couple of posts down that Gwen unrestrained in a car or plane is like a 26 pound overcaffeinated monochromatic Dalmation puppy, and Maddy isn't much better.  So we really had no choice but to buy child carseats for the trip home.   

As you may know, China is opposed to vehicle safety in all its forms, so even finding a carseat to buy is tricky.  We went to a giant department store catering to tourists, and found some cheapo Graco carseats on sale for i-kid-you-not about 10% of the cost of a new car.  We found only one other place that sells carseats, in this case a Chinese brand called "Goodbaby", listed in a product catalog under the heading "infantile products."  Ironically, we're considering using the Goodbaby carseats as timeout chairs once we're back in the states.

Anyway, as you can see, Gwen loves her new carseat!  We pick up Maddy's probably tomorrow, and then we can plunk our beloved babies in front of our tiny but invaluable portable DVD screen so they can watch the Two Minutes Elmo at eleven hundred hours every day.  Elmo in Grouchland is our current favorite -- great movie!  And we're fondly imagining that we might actually step out of the 747 with most of our hair still in place.

August 31, 2006

6 Banyon Tree Temple (then and now)


It's hard to believe that we were here not quite one year ago.  As we walked into the courtyard, we were filled with such a sense of deja vu.  You can read about last year's visit to this place here:  2005 Six Banyon Tree Temple.

Here are a few pictures of this year's visit.  Click the picture to see a larger view.

Temple_sarah Temple_3

Far left is Sarah (from the famous USAA China Team) and Donna and the girls. The other picture is, of course, Andrew and the two smallest members of his fan club.

August 30, 2006

A few more pictures before Guangzhou


This is our guide, David.  He looked after us so well while we were in Nanning.  He even entertained the girls while we packed (that was more help than he'll ever know!).  The kids really loved him! 

The hand in the middle of the picture is Daddy's.  He's trying to get the kids to look at the camera.  Unfortunately, Mommy cut his head off since she was too busy looking at her pretty babies to notice that Daddy wasn't in the picture (bad Mommy!).



Not even Britney Spears is *THIS* bad!  Look where our girls are standing!  Both girls wanted to sit with David and couldn't resist the view from the front seat so they stood up all the way to the Nanning airport.  Gwen tried to "help" the driver steer the van and change gears and he was a good sport about it while ensuring that we all arrived alive at our destination. 

Without a car seat, Gwen is IMPOSSIBLE to control in a car or plane. She's a squirmy bouncy bundle of energy.  Most of the time, she's standing in Mommy's lap holding onto her thumbs and jumping up and down with a huge goofy grin on her sweet little face.


The flight to Guangzhou was only one hour long but it was 60 minutes of pure challenge for Mom since Gwen needed to be entertained the whole time or she'd unfasten her seat belt and try to get out of her seat. 

Here she is modeling Mommy's super mod reading glasses while sucking on a butterscotch lollipop.  When she was finished, she turned around and used all her charm to seduce the man next to her into giving her most of his in-flight snack -- which she neatly placed in her barf bag before asking him for more.

All of this was yesterday evening.  Today, our first stop was the Temple (We'll blog some pics of that later) and our 2nd stop was a department store to purchase two car seats for our trip home!  1300 Yuan each but well worth it!

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