Monday, January 16, 2012


We made it home safely on Saturday morning. 

I will be working on moving over the posts from China to this site in the next couple of days.  I will also be adding some more posts that I did not get to while we were in China.  So please scroll down and enjoy our trip to China!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Two More Days

Only two more days and we will be going home!!!

Sorry I have not posted the last two days. We have still been out and about but we are just done. When we have returned to our room the past two days we have either just watched tv or took a nap. I will do some posts with pictures soon.

Two days ago we visited the Chen Family Temple and then went to check Makinley's TB results, which she passed.

Yesterday we visited the Guangzhou zoo and I highly recommend this. It was lovely. All of the animals were up and about so we got a lot of good pictures and video.

Today we are going back to the island to walk around and then head to the store for some last minute supplies.

Tomorrow at 8:30am is our Consulate Appointment, then we have nothing more to do until we fly out Friday night.

Like I said, we are ready to go home.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Orphanage Visit

Today has been a very emotional day for us. It was wonderful to get the opportunity to visit where Makinley has lived for the first three years of her life. It was wonderful to see the children and how very happy that they are. But there are so many. Zhongshan orphanage is home to 500 children that need forever families and that is heart wrenching.

We were not sure how Makinley was going to react going back to her 'home'. She did so much better than I could have EVER imagined. She did not cry or fuss at all. She stayed in her stroller and just watched everything happening around her. I think that the stroller actually made her feel like she was in her own little bubble. Every time some one came up to her she would just sit back and turn her head. She did not respond to anyone except Ms. Zhong at the end of the visit. She did look at her nanny (ayi) and listen to her when she talked to her, but she would not let anybody touch her except me. My baby was very brave today. Honestly, I do not know how these sweet children do this. Everything changes for them. Their whole life as they know it is now different. I have no idea what she must have been thinking today as we went back to Zhongshan. She always seemed to know that I was not going to leave her. She never seemed scared, just a little nervous again. Honestly, the only time that she is not nervous is with us in the room. Then she just talks, giggles and plays away! 

We brought 250 DumDum lollipops to pass out and the children absolutely loved them. The older kids swarmed us for them. Everyone was very appreciative. It was a good choice for a treat because all the children can have them and enjoy them. As we passed out the lollipops we were able to meet many of the children that have families in the process of adopting them. They were all beautiful. All the children were beautiful. They all touched my heart very much.

In the baby room we were told that most of the babies had families adopting them. Most were healthy so they were being adopted domestically, which was wonderful news! Ms Zhong told us that she has 400 families in the process to adopt children from Zhongshan!! That total is domestic as well as international. That seemed like a very large number to me. It was great news because it means that these children will have families.

Zhongshan orphanage is rated the best orphanage in China. The government has put a lot of focus on Zhongshan and it is very clean and well maintained. I am so glad that this is where my daughter was. She received physical therapy while she was there and it is very apparent that they have worked with her.

As we were passing out the lollipops to the older children a group of girls grabbed the list with the names of the children that I needed to get pictures of and started finding children for us to take pictures of them. They were so cute and they were so very helpful. We got to see 12 of the 14 children that we had on the list. The other two are in foster homes. They were asking what the names next to the children's names were and I told them that was the Mama or Baba's (daddy) names. They were asking how to say them and then Journey, my friend's little girl, kept telling everyone, "Your Mama's name is ..... Your Baba's name is ......" It was very cute. Then they would ask, "Who was my Mama?" because they wanted to say the name correctly. It was so fun to be in the center of the chaos of children.

The older boys (ages 5- 13) kept asking Ms Zhong, "When are you going to find me a Mama and a Baba?" There are so many boys at Zhongshan. I told her that I have already been telling people to adopt boys because they fill many orphanages since most people only want to adopt girls. Ms Zhong told me to tell them to adopt the boys at Zhongshan!

The children are obviously well cared for at Zhongshan. They eat well they have beds and clean showers and classrooms. There is still something significant missing...a connection. My sweet girl did not connect to anyone at the orphanage, not one. Out of all of the nannies that have taken care of her for three years, not one of them did she really give the time of day to. Not one of them did she let touch her. She let Ms Zhong hold her but not until the end when we were leaving. She refused her the entire visit up until that point. So while this is the best orphanage, there is no love connection. This only a family can give to these precious children.

So my heart is heavy tonight as I will never forget the faces that I have seen today. The sweetness in each of their smiles and the tender hugs they desperately ached for.

All the nannies gathered around 

Makinley's Nanny

Makinley's bed

Passing out lollipops

The girls looking at our list

Ms Zhong and Makinley

Pictures of Z Kiddos

I'm going to post pictures first of the children whose parents will be looking to see if I got pictures of their children. Then I will post about our visit. The kids were all beautiful and wonderful!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Shopping Day

Today we spent the day shopping and walking the old street markets. We are very fortunate to be with only one other couple right now so we have had a very nice time getting to know each other and our guide, Kelly, whom we had as a guide the last time we were in Guangzhou. We have learned a lot about China culture and for the past two days our guide, Kelly, has taken us to two very amazing places to eat. They definitely do not cater to westerners at all and Donny and I get to try a lot of different foods because she just orders for the group and we eat it. We have tried things that we would NEVER order for ourselves. But the last two lunches have been the best food we have had since we have been to China. She orders about 5 to 7 different dishes and we all get to try some. For those of you who do not know my husband, he does not eat anything. Yet, he has tried nearly all of it and he has actually liked it. Our guide tells us that what we have eaten with her is like their home cooking. No chinese food in the US tastes like this. It is much better here. It is Cantonese cooking. As good as it was, we would not go back on our own. We would not know how to order what she did. The first place did not have a menu!

For all of my Z family, we are visiting the orphanage tomorrow!!! I am really praying that I will get to meet all of your beautiful children!! I have 14 kiddos to see!! I will post pictures as soon as I can. Love you all!

Makinley did amazing today. She does not whine or fuss, even though we go past lunch time sometimes and miss nap. She is a wonderful, lovey, happy little girl. She is slowly letting go of some of her fear when we leave the hotel, but she is always ecstatic to return to our room. She is very comfortable here with us. We just love her so much!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Red Couch

While we were on Shamain Island today we went into the White Swan (mainly to stay warm). Even though the hotel is closed, the first two floors are open with their shops and restaurant. That meant that we could get our "Red Couch" pictures.

Sleeping is also getting better, thank you all for asking. I think we are on a normal schedule now. Makinley has slept great both nights too.

We LOVE the emails! I try to respond, but I know that there are several that we have read that I have not responded to. I am sorry, but please keep emailing us. We are half way through the trip, but we are already ready to go home. Our children are missing us a lot too and that makes it hard. Your emails give us something to look forward to in the mornings and evenings.

For the Z families, our guide is trying to set up a day to visit so when I know I will let you know. Or guide was sick so we have had another guide the past 4 days. Now that she is back she will set up the visit.

Medical Exam

We headed out this morning for Makinley's medical exam. It was the coldest today that it has been since we arrived here, and it has been cold most days. Today was raining and cold...brrrrr. My girl is a trooper though. She is doing so well bonding with me. She even gave me kisses this morning on her own when I got her out of bed..swoon..what a lovie!!!

So we arrived at the medical clinic and she was extremely nervous, again. As soon as she saw the nurse and the doctors in the white coats she totally lost it. Screaming Mama, Mama, Mama and flinging her body all over the place. A bit like she did for me on Gotcha day. It took me and a male doctor to try to hold her down just so he could check her heart and her body. We were not doing so well at keeping that little buggar still. Did I mention before that this child has super human strength. Our poor guide tried to help me hold her for her ear check and was shocked at how strong she was. So we screamed and pitched a fit through the whole exam. You can only imagine the TB test....but as soon as she was done with each station I was able to calm her down. The rest of the afternoon whenever we would enter a building (for lunch or shopping) she would get so paniced. Poor baby.

She also decided today that Daddy was not one of her favorite people. Poor Daddy. But this evening he got her in the tubby and has been playing with her for awhile with the bubbles and toys. I guess he is on her good side again.

We found another food place in the hotel called Food Street. It has all chinese food and it is actually pretty good. It really is reasonably priced too. We have eaten there twice now. Our guide will be showing us some other restaurants nearby tomorrow. Although it is just too yucky to go walking outside right now anyways.

This is a normal sight.  People carrying oversized loads balanced on their bikes.  It just amazes us.

She is Ours!

Yesterday we had to return back to the civil affairs office to do some paperwork that would make Makinley legally ours. I was worried about the car sickness. And I was worried as to how she would do going back to that place of horror for her. Well, the Dramamine worked. What a HUGE praise!! But my baby was deathly scared when we got in the van. We went up the elevator and she was so very nervous. Once we got there she settled down a little and we were able to do the paperwork. It is official now. Wan Chun Ying is an orphan no more!!! She has started her new life and she is now Makinley Faith Chun Ying Sloan!!! She is our girl...finally a Sloan.

After we left the civil affairs office we went to the Carrefore for some groceries. It is similiar to their super Walmart. We bought some things for the children back home and then headed back to the hotel. It was a good day after all. I just wish that she had not been so terrified.

 Her first McDonald's

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Meeting Makinley

We are settled in back at the room and everything is going so much better than we could have imagined. Especially with how it started......

We arrived at the Civil Affairs building and waited for Ms. Zhong (orphanage adoption director) and the nanny to arrive with Makinley. We saw them come in as they were explaining to our guide that she got sick on the ride there. They tried to clean her up a little and then we were the first ones to meet our child. She started to walk out and as soon as she saw us she started to walk backwards. Ms. Zhong took her hand and gently led her out. She tried to walk right by us so I jumped up and went to see her. Then it happened....complete melt down. Worse one that I have ever seen. My poor baby didn't just cry, she SCREAMED!!!! She screamed and fought with me for so long and so hard that I thought that she would get sick aagin. Finally she settled down and stopped crying after what seemed like forever. She allowed me to hold her tight, as I had been doing the whole time. She is so shy and timid even with Ms. Zhong. If anyone spoke to her she just lowered her head and turned her head to me. Daddy was a nono until about 5 minutes ago when he started playing cars with her and now he has her laughing. What an incredibly cute laugh she has.

On the car ride to the store she got sick again, so we told the guide to take us and the other couple with us back to the hotel. So she has already christened me as her Momma by throwing up on me. :D

When we got back to the hotel we headed straight for the room so that I could get her soiled clothes and her incredibly stinky diaper off. I know that the last thing you should do right away is take them out of their clothes, but I did. I had to. They were extremely yucky! Next bad thing to do is the bath, and yep, I broke that rule too. Into the bath she went. She was amazed! Then Daddy added bubbles and she was in wonderland! She has obviously never been in a tub and has never seen bubbles. She stayed in for quite some time just playing away. Daddy went to do some paper work and I just watched her smiling and laughing away. After tubby we got some lotion on (another moment she loved) and then put our jammies on.

She has been amazing ever since. She has played with her toys, laughed at cartoons and even danced to the songs. She has jumped because she was excited and she has discovered that she likes Cheerios. Oh, and Skittles too! Thanks for the heads up on that Angela. Although they brought some from the orphanage too. She has even learned how to drink out of a sippy cup. That was very humorous to watch. All this and she has only been with us for three and a half hours. She is actually doing better than even Ashlyn did when we met her. Praising God for answered prayers.

Daddy waiting to meet Makinley 

Poor baby was scared to death