Friday, November 20, 2009

We Are Back By Popular Demand!

We have decided to update the blog because of catching a lot of grief and people asking me if we actually did bring her into the house or just left Olivia in front of the garage (the last picture posted). We also believe it is a good idea since all of our family lives in Ohio and this will be a great way for them to stay updated.

Olivia is adjusting well to her new home and family. She has gotten into a schedule with napping during the day (9am and ~5pm) and going to bed ~8pm. She is trying like hell to walk which we have been told by some to discourage haha! And Olivia has very strong passion for food and I mean like “Daddy’s” passion. There is not much she will not eat. Hope all of you enjoy the pictures. I will post more in a week or two after she has all of her medical tests complete.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Finally Home!!!! - Our Last Post

Back Home

Veronica and Olivia

Nonna (Laura's Mom), Olivia, and Laura

We missed our connecting flight to Fort Myers and stayed Saturday night in Chicago. The customs and immigration process took much longer than expected.

I would like to thank my sister, Dee, for keeping this blog updated and for all of you who followed us through the adoption process and trip to China. We had a blast but it is now time to get a little normalcy in our lives and show Olivia she was not adopted to a couple of gypsies. Above are a few pictures of Olivia we would like to share with all of you - the one picture has Olivia with our guide Veronica whoI do not know how we would have gotten through this process without. Hope to see all of you soon.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Open Market

We visited the open market yesterday which is called the Qingpingdong Drug Market. They call it a drug market because things such as scorpions, ants, snakes, etc . that are used as a natural cure for ailments. I have quite a few wild pictures from our visit. Some of the pictures show the live critters, a large blade attached to wood that slightly resembles something that would cut paper but is actually used for shucking turtles, and a lot of cool pictures of daily life in the open market. Our guide, Veronica, thought it was best not to take us down the street with what we consider to be domestic animals because of how inhumane it could look to us. We have one more day here and even though we had an experience of a lifetime both Laura and I are ready to come home. I will continue to update this website until we make it home. Laura and I thank all of you who have been following during this journey.
Turtle on a stick.

The Butcher

Street life

Busy streets

More street life

Snake Wine

Snake Skin

Turtle Shucker


Chopping Block


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Red Couch

It has been a tradition with all Great Wall Adoption families that each group dress their sons and daughters in traditional Chinese clothing and sit them together on the red couch in the White Swan Hotel for pictures. As you can imagine, it is quite a task to get all of them to behave at once for the pictures. In our group, there were eight baby girls and one “special needs” 3-year old boy adopted. Olivia is sitting in the first row, second from the left.
I also took a picture of mom and daughter on the red couch.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A Blessing At The Buddist Temple

The Temple of Six Banyan Trees was built in 537 by Master Xiao Yu during the Liang Dynasty (502 - 557). The Six Banyan Tree Temple is a world famous Buddhist temple, with a history of over 1,400 years.

We visited the Six Banyan Tree Buddhist Temple today where Olivia was blessed by a monk.

The temple was destroyed by fire in the 10th century, and was rebuilt in 989.The temple was named this because it was built around 6 Banyan Trees.After the six banyan trees died from old age, a Flowery Pagoda (see picture) was built in its place in 1097. The pagoda is 57 meters high, and is constructed of wood and bricks. From the outside, the building looks like it is only 9 stories tall; however, it is in fact 17 stories tall from the inside. The building received its name from its colorful exterior.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Doctor's Visit

The doctor’s visit went as well as expected and was diagnosed to be in good health. She currently weighs 17.86 lbs and is 30-inches tall. We do plan on getting her in to see a pediatrician as soon as we are back in Florida.

In the afternoon we visited Yuntai Garden for a nice long walk. Olivia was half asleep for most of it but Laura and I really enjoyed it. Yuntai Garden is the largest garden in China and is heralded as "the Pearl of the Flower City of Guangzhou". The structure and layout of the garden is unique with with a working clock made of flowers and over 200 kinds of rare Chinese and foreign flowers. I took some pictures but am not sure if it will do it any justice.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

How the Locals "GO"

The only place we have been able to use American style toilets is in the hotels. Everywhere else you must use “squatting rooms” when you have to use the restroom. I attached a picture for those of you who have never seen when of these before. I took this picture in the restroom of a very nice restaurant.
Also, when we arrived back in the hotel room today there was a gift waiting for Laura and Olivia, courtesy of the hotel for all adoptive parents. It is a “Going Home Barbie” and is one of the cutest things we have ever seen considering how similar it is to mom and daughter.

Chen Family Temple

We enjoyed a bus trip to Chen’s Family Temple today. The temple is also known as Guangdong Folk Art Museum which was built in the 1890's. It has nine halls and six courtyards. It is now the largest and best preserved and decorated ancient architecture existing in Guangdong province.