Sunday, August 9, 2009

And now, the blog post you've all been waiting for

Sorry, for the delay in posting. It's been a really busy 24 hours. Max got to us just after three in the afternoon yesterday. It was a loooooong morning. The last two hours were pure torture. I've felt an amazing calm throughout most of this adoption, but during those two hours I wondered what the heck I had gotten us into. Our guide called us from the lobby when he got here and my stomach really started churning. But, as soon as he walked through the door the calm returned. He was grinning a huge grin when he walked in and you could just tell he was a happy, loved little boy. We had the additional unexpected blessing of his foster mom being able to come with the orphanage director and staff to bring him too us. We didn't have any inkling that this was a possibility. We had a lot of time to ask her questions and she brought the cameras and video camera that we had sent with our care packages. We haven't had time to develop the film yet, but we know that this will be a huge gift to Max in the future. We were also able to take some pictures with Max and his foster mom. Again, such an unexpected and wonderful gift. As soon as his foster mom and the orphanage staff left we had to go take pictures to have for the registration office today. We walked about 10 minutes to the photo studio and it only took about 2 minutes to take the pictures. Our guide said that some children cry for so long that it takes 1-2 hours to get decent photos. After this, we walked back to the hotel and everyone was hungry so we decided to walk to a nearby noodle restaurant. This became more of an adventure than we had expected. First of all, we had to cross three streets to get to the restaurant. This was probably one of the scariest events of my life. We got stuck in the middle of one road when the light changed and cars and buses were zooming withing 1-2 feet of us. But, we made it. Of course, since this is such a rural province there aren't many westerners that visit and very few people speak English. No one at the restaurant did and we sure don't speak Mandarin. Thankfully they had pictures and with some pointing and gestures we ended up with some food. We aren't really sure what all of it was, but the noodles were very good. We then walked down to the grocery store to buy some formula, water, and a gift for the orphanage. This wasn't nearly as challenging as the restaurant other than the fact that mom was stopped by security for wanting to take her backpack in the store. It was also a bit challenging to carry everything back to the hotel, but we made it. We then hung out and played in the room for awhile and got things ready for today. Max and Ellie are both troopers. It was a very long day and they both had great attitudes all day long. Ellie has really taken to the big sister role and our biggest issue with her so far is that she wants to carry him, feed him, and do everything for him and he's already got strong opinions about what he will and won't do. About 8:30 Max finally realized that his foster mom was gone. He grieved pretty hard for 30-40 minutes until he finally cried himself to sleep. But, everyone slept straight through until about 6:30 this morning which was a wonderful and much needed rest. Max woke up a little sad this am, but it didn't last long. Once we got him to take his first bottle he felt much better. We then had to get ourselves ready and fed breakfast. Max is a great eater so far. He had loads of fruit at breakfast along with a few potatoes. After breakfast we got all of our paperwork and money together and went to the registration office. Max's foster mom was there again today and we were able to get some more pictures. Everything went well until the last set of photos when Ellie and Max had there first sibling squabble over a bottle of water. At the same time, Max's foster mom left, he started screaming, and Ellie started crying. We were glad to leave after that. He fell asleep in the car though and now back at the hotel is in good spirits again. He and Ellie are playing bubbles and trucks and barbies. If we're feeling adventurous we may try to get to the park or pool, or we may just hang out in the room. Also, we have a friend of a friend who is a cleft surgeon in Lanzhou and he stopped by last night. We are going to meet him for dinner at the hotel restaurant for dinner. Tomorrow, we are visiting the Gansu provincial museum but that's not until 10am so we'll be able to have a more leisurely morning. Thank you everyone for your thoughts and prayers - they've been working. So far everything is going much better than we could have hoped for. We miss you all.


  1. Alexis,

    He's so sweet and beautiful! I could not be happier for you. It sounds like everything is going perfectly! I cannot wait to meet him. He looks so full of life and energy. What a ball of fun!!! Still sending lots good thoughts your way. Keep us posted! I can't wait to see more pictures of your little man!

  2. So glad to see things working out! Max is very handsome.

  3. What a delightful little boy! Congratulations to all of you. The ICU at NKCH is thinking and praying for you all. We can't wait to meet Max.
    Dianne S.

  4. I'm here sobbing at my desk. So happy for you guys! Max sounds like such a sweetie. What a gift to meet the foster mother - and twice! All the hard work to get to this point was so worth it!!

  5. He is so cute!! It sounds like everything weant pretty smoothly! That is awesome! Isaac is sitting here with me looking at his picture and he said "baby Max". He doesn't get that they are the same age. Congratulations and God bless!