Saturday, August 2, 2008

Swim, Swam, Swum

Naomi met a new friend, Stephanie, at the pool today. Stephanie has to get therapy on her right arm. She cannot extend it due to an injury during birth. Her parents said that it will probably be overcome with therapy.
Naomi gives daddy a kiss and flashes one of her fantastic smiles.

Moon cakes and more

Ahhh, it is actually very refreshing to be in GZ. The hotel is much busier but the area around the hotel is much more laid back. We are on an island so to speak but it seems more like a peninsula. I would compare the lifestyle somewhat to Mackinac Island (minus the horse poop), but Asian style. Peter says it is too expensive for most natives to live here. They get many Chinese here on vacation as well as adoptive families. You only see taxis, limos or high end vehicles here. They have tennis clubs and fancy restaurants down the streets. There are "squares" inside the neighborhood blocks where they play badminton and hacky sack. The buffet is much better here at the White Swan hotel. They actually have a chef from Louisiana working here. So the french toast is really french toast. They even had waffles today. I didn't see any duck or chicken feet, but it was breakfast! We had our medical appointment for Naomi (which she passed with flying colors) and had her photos for her visa done today. Then we took a taxi into GZ and did a supermarket trip. We were going to do the electronics market too but we spent so much time marveling over the delicacies available that it was time for Naomi's nap. We'll make another trip this week and check that out. After her nap we ventured out to the shops around the hotel and visited our new China friend, Judy, that we met last week when we were here. She invited us to her church (she's a Christian of 3 yrs) here and we are going to go tomorrow. She owns a shop off the main street so we did some shopping there. She gave us some good deals. We hit the pool after working up a sweat (nothing in comparison to Nanchang though). Naomi loved the pool and made some new friends. The swimsuit Danna Taylor gave us fit her perfectly. It seemed like there was a "daddy's club" meeting in the kiddie pool. It was great to hear all the different adoption stories. Some of the stories were sad but all had happy endings. There were quite a few older/special needs children. A few cleft palettes, one had burn scars on her arms and another had something with her arm that it wouldn't extend. All are fixable it seems. Most of them were 2 or older, most of the parents started out like us and switched their dossier to accepting a special needs baby because they were tired of the wait. It looks like it only speeds the process up about 6 months. Many of them used The Holt International agency that is supported by many of the Christian artists we play on Smile FM. I have heard many praises for that organization from the families that have used them. We have not met anyone who has used the same agency as we did.
We don't have any more appointments until Wed. & Thurs. so I'm sure we'll find some trouble to get into the next couple of days.
Today starts the Mid-Autumn Festival aka Moon Festival to celebrate the abundance of the summer harvest and tradition is to eat moon cakes under the moon. They have moon cakes for sale here and we are hoping to partake in this tradition sometime this week. I'll let you know how that all works out. As long as it involves eating cake and not some kind of animal feet I'm up for it.