The days and weeks seem long right now, but they still manage to pass by in spite of that. We are getting settled into a routine, just in time for the surgery! We are officially approved for Titus's first surgery on February 1, so we'd really appreciate prayers as we prepare. The first surgery will repair his lip and part of his palate, and it'll be at least two days in the hospital.
I've got to wrap up our China trip, or it will fade into even more distant memory! But it's been pretty exhausting with four kids now that my mom is gone, and we are still trying to unpack and put our house back together from the trip. So I'll leave you with two days and some very cute pictures!
Day 7, December 29
We got up and met our guide bright and early to do the medical check. Every person who applies for a US visa has to undergo a medical check, but thankfully the clinic that process them was not to busy. We went back to the hotel and finished up the visa paperwork, then our guide took me on a tour of the area around the hotel. She was very conscientious about telling us all the American food around the hotel, until we finally had a long conversation about how my family fully embraces the "eat to live" mantra, especially when it comes to ethnic food. When in China, eat Chinese! So she took us to a little noodle shop next to the hotel and pointed out a few other Chinese restaurants as well. We went back there around lunch and got some dumpling for take-out...they were delicious, although a little different than I was used to. There were some halal signs in the shop, so I'm pretty sure the dumplings were beef with some kind of warm spices in them. Still, pretty yummy.
After Titus woke up, we walked over to Yiexiu Park. I wanted to see the flower pavilion, but it had just closed, so we walked around the little lake and did a brief jaunt into the park. But I was still pretty tired from traveling, and it's really a vigorous walk due to all the hills. We tried out the executive lounge for dinner at the hotel and then hung out in the room.
Day 8, December 30
I had my shopping list all prepared for our visit to Shamian Island and managed to leave it at the hotel. The consulate used to be located there, and although it's not as popular with adoptive families now, they still have a lot of shops that have cheap souvenirs. I did a little better in my bargaining (husbands are a great foil, right?), but the highlight was running into a few French families that we'd seen in the hotel. I was able to carry on a conversation with them in French (!) and it was interesting to hear about their experiences. Of course we took some pictures at the statues:
We were going to eat at a Dim Sum restaurant, but Titus was starting to get tired, so we headed back. For dinner that evening, we went back to the noodle place and ate--Titus approved of the dumpings, noodles, and mushrooms!