Friday, December 14, 2007

December 14, 2006- Embroidery Factory

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful. I know that full well."
Psalm 139:13-14

I can’t tell you how many times I have read on other adoption websites that the 3rd day is the day of big improvement! Obviously, AnnaClaire has decided that we are here to stay. She has gone to sleep and woken up 3 times (plus naptime) and we’ve still been here. We’ve gone back to the orphanage, and she is still with us. So today, this 3rd full day with our sweet girl, we saw huge strides. As reported from Mom and Dad because I was asleep at the crazy hour of 2:30AM… They said that she woke up whimpering, not even crying, at 2:30. They fixed her a hot bottle and she fell right back asleep after chugging it. At 7:15, Dad woke up to see AnnaClaire sitting in her crib playing with her hairbrush! That’s our girl! She didn’t want to wake anyone up, so she stayed in her crib and kept herself occupied! Aww ;). I woke up just after 8 and fed AnnaClaire her good morning bottle. She didn’t want much of it. Mom tried feeding her some with no luck either. We played with her all morning and then got her dressed in one of her sweet outfits. She keeps pulling out her bow which saddens Mom and me so much. I’ll teach her to keep it in, yes I will! We were just about to go down for breakfast at 9:30 when Amy came to our room. Amy is such a great guide. We all love her, she is awesome. Anyway, she couldn’t believe that we hadn’t eaten yet! (She didn’t think we could eat in 30 min… we were planning on leaving for the embroidery museum at 10!) I’m telling you, they are very on time here! They rush about with everything they do! They rush out of the plane on plane rides, they honk if you are sitting in the traffic one second, they eat exactly at noon, etc. It’s very funny! We went down to breakfast… AnnaClaire didn’t want much to eat but ate some congee. I went into the hall outside of the breakfast room and held her. We danced to the Christmas music (I mean song. They ONLY play “I’m dreaming of a White Christmas” it is all that is ever on!) We walked around in circles and looked down to the lobby which is filled with tacky Christmas decorations. I had her smiling and we had fun. We then went downstairs and got in cabs. We needed 2 so we had a girl cab and a guy cab. I held AnnaClaire and she was very happy the whole ride to the museum. She even fell asleep on my shoulder! She woke up when we got there and was ready to see Dada. The museum was very cool. Embroidery is what Hunan is famous for. It is so beautiful! AnnaClaire was quite restless in the museum and only wanted to walk around or be held by Dada (who was videoing). It made it tough but she ended up letting anyone hold her although she was a squirmy worm! She even reached for Mama which just made Mom’s day! We got to walk through where they were making it. They all paused to see AnnaClaire who loved all the attention. The embroidery is so beautiful and a true work of art! We headed down the stairs to the museum shop. There are actually 3 shops. 1 has accessories, one has two sided embroideries on stands and one has framed embroidery. I got a really pretty framed embroidery with flowers that I’m going to hang in my room. I bought AnnaClaire a 2 sided flower embroidery on a stand for her room. I got an embroidered pocket mirror and we got AnnaClaire a little embroidered satchel thing for a gotcha day present. While we waited for Dad to pay, AnnaClaire seemed fussy, so Mom gave her some pear juice. She LOVES her little gerber juices and drank the whole thing. She was ao smiley and reached for Mom again in the car ride. We then left for lunch. First we stopped by the room. Amy translated AnnaClaire’s HTS reports while Dad videoed it so we will always no (See “the first year” post). Will and I played with busy little AnnaClaire who was just walking up a storm! She is SO cute when she walks. She stood by the bed and played with toys a little. Dad changed her diaper twice (once poopy and once wet). This girl who we’ve had for 3 full days has gone poop 4 times! This is a very good thing as sometimes the babies have constipation problems and have to have prunes. Not our AnnaClaire! Anyway, after fun time in the room, we headed across the street for lunch. There was an underground tunnel to get to the other side as it would be like frogger to get to the other side by crossing the street. AnnaClaire let me carry her and we skipped and swirled and jumped. She was squealing in delight. She was very antsy when we got to the restaurant. Mom took her outside for a bit to calm her down. She came back just as the food was coming out. She sat with Mom the whole time and really enjoyed herself. AnnaClaire ate green beans and rice off of chopsticks! She also had terra root (that is good!), sweet potato, and some of the Chinese cabbage that was mixed with her beloved green beans. She also got a hold of the tea and drank that~she loved it! Lunch was cheap again! Not as cheap as yesterday, but still cheap. It was so delicious! Amy knows the best places to eat. Our best meals have been here. The ones in Beijing were not nearly as good. We came back to the room after AnnaClaire and I bounced through the underground walkway again. We stripped her down to her onesie and put on a pair of pants. Dad and Mom gave her a bottle which she didn’t eat much of. She fell asleep on Dad’s shoulder. He put her in the crib and she has slept peacefully since. She woke up about an hour ago and cried for about 2 minutes. She then fell right back asleep. I’m guessing she’ll be up any minute! We love our sweet girl so much! Tomorrow is our last day in Changsha. We head to Guangzhou tomorrow night. I’m very excited to see all of our travel group and all the new babies and kids!!! But it is also the last leg of our trip which makes me sad.

AnnaClaire is the sweetest thing. She attracts attention and everyone wants to love on her. She loves to wave to people and smile at people and hams it up for anyone who watches her. She is so outgoing and such a drama queen~she really knows how to work the crowd!!!!!!!!!!!!

She now goes to anyone in our family without crying and although still a daddy’s girl, she is learning to love everyone and doesn’t scream when she goes to Mama anymore.

Following is a list of all AnnaClaire can do!

She blows the sweetest bubbles
She knows 3 words- ba-flying kisses (she says it ALL the time and absolutely loves this word) zou- ready to go (haven’t heard this one yet, but the nannies said she knew it) and jiang- peek-a-boo (we heard this one for the first time today!) I have also heard dada but its more like dadadadadadada as in baby talk not exactly dada as in daddy.
She can walk on her own but isn’t all that steady
She stands up but can’t stand for too long on her own
She sits down
She is learning to get up when she falls
She blows the sweetest kisses
She waves
She knows exactly what to do with her toys and can hold most of them that have a place to grip
She can turn pages of a book
She can pick up her own cheerios out of the container
She can pull bows out of her hair (this has got to change!)
She can “brush” people’s hair
She claps her hands
She laughs out loud
She bangs her toys together

And I may be missing something, but this is most of the things she can do. Oh she is terrified of strollers but loves her Ergo (baby carrier)!

AnnaClaire had a VERY nice and long nap!!! We have been playing since. She is such a sweet girl. She played with Mom and me for a long time. She liked to shake the medicine because it made a fun sound! She loved biting on the toilet paper holder (the infamous toilet paper... good times in Beijing!) She played a lot with all her toys and was having a blast walking to me! She had fun with Dada and Will too. We learned that she cannot go from standing to sitting without falling but she can go from sitting to standing. We had a blast just playing with our sweet girl. I'm adding a few pictures from tonight and a few others from the trip.

Our girl is SO smart! She has been walking so much today and is a great walker! She is also very smart with her words. We were looking at the who loves baby book and she had the page open to Drew and Will. I thought she was just talking baby talk but then we realized she was pointing to Drew and saying "ge ge! ge ge! ge ge!" (ge ge means big brother in Chinese) It was SO cute. She did the same on Will's page! And then there was this: AnnaClaire got a plug out of Dada's bag and Mama said "no, no!" And AnnaClaire shook her head and said, "BOO!" (boo means "no" in Chinese). She is our sweet little genius!

On another note, Mom, AnnaClaire, and I are all coming down with colds... that's what happens when you share chopsticks and give open mouth kisses! But it's all worth it :) Anyway, please pray that we'd all feel better. It's especially hard because AnnaClaire is pretty restless with her cold... poor baby!

Oh and she is wearing a bow in lots of the pictures (I said that she kept pulling them out in the last post). Well, most of the pictures are taken around the same time and so the bow hasn't gotten old yet... I did put one in my hair and another one in her hair and she very much wanted to be like sissy. She kept it in for the longest yet! We have to keep that up!!! I guess you could say she is starting to tolerate the bows! Thank goodness! What is a girl without her bows?

Lots of love,

A year ago, Amy took us on a nice little taxi drive and we visited the embroidery factory. I remember on the way, AnnaClaire fell asleep in my arms. It was the sweetest thing ever. The embroidery factory was awesome! AnnaClaire was so busy there. She was really cute and all the embroidery ladies LOVED her so much! Everyone stopped work and just came over and wanted to hold her, play with her, look at her. Amy took us to another delicious lunch. We really did have the best food in Changsha. Amy picked all the best places, and entrees for us. She was the best! I cannot believe it's been a year since this day. I remember it so well. I remember crossing under the street to get to lunch, having more terra root, seeing the beautiful embroidery. I have a vivid picture in my mind of AnnaClaire drinking a little apple juice in her bottle, sweetly sitting in Mom's lap in the middle of the embroidery place. I remember so much about our trip. It really was the best trip EVER! I am so thankful for the past year. It has brought us so far, and AnnaClaire has grown so much. Look at those 2 little bottom teeth in all the pictures. I love those 2 little teeth! They are so cute! I miss her gummy smile! I love her so much... God is SO good!

AnnaClaire, a year ago today, we spent our 3rd day with you. You were still soooo attached to Daddy, but you were slowly getting better with the rest of us. We visited the embroidery factory and it was so fun. You loved walking all around there. There were beautiful embroideries there. I remember eating at that yummy restaurant and you had your first tastes of hot tea! I remember when e crossed under the street, I carried you and we bounced down the stairs and you laughed so hard the whole way there. Thank you for the year. It's been a great year. I love you so much, Little Miss!
Love, Sissy

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