Thursday, May 18, 2017


Vivi was adorable at breakfast each morning. Like many or heck ALL adoptive families before us, we cherished breakfast in our hotel. Finding food is hard in China and having a beautiful expansive breakfast buffet each morning saves your life and sanity. It took a bit longer with Vivi, but she always ate her breakfast really well, and it was so nice to have so many options every day so we could try a lot of them out and see what she liked. I didn't expect her to be picky about food. However, from day one she knew what she liked and didn't like. She would try anything, but if she wasn't a fan she would spit it right out. By now we knew she liked eggs, but not eggs with cheese. She loved yogurt, rice, and noodles. It was still really hard to get her to drink anything and she would never try juice. Monday was the first morning she was strong enough in her suck reflexes to suck up her yogurt with a straw, which is how they do it in China. I was used to Vivi telling me she was full by refusing food, but she didn't this morning and all of the sudden she gagged and threw up a little of it. I felt terrible. I had been really careful this whole time not to overfeed her and then just when I let my guard down she ate too much. Thankfully this was the only time it happened.

Also today I really noticed how much stronger she was in general. Her core was now strong enough to hold herself up easily in the car and while sitting. It was amazing how fast her body responded to all of the play and attention she was getting with a family.

On the agenda for the day was a trip to Shamian Island. It is a very traditional spot for adoptive families to visit. It is where the US Consulate used to be, and it is very quaint with a European feel so families used to stay there. It is quiet and pretty and has many shops that cater to adoptive families for traditional Chinese gifts. I snapped a few pictures on the way there because I didn't want to forget the many apartments and how every single one of them had clothes hanging out to dry. Also on our way there we video chatted with my parents because it was my mom's birthday. When we said goodbye, Vivi started saying bye-bye for the first time. It is her best and cutest trick to this day and it was so fun to hear her talk for the first time. She heard her nannies say bye-bye along with Chinese so it wasn't like I had taught her to say this, but I was pretty excited to hear her talk. Her voice is really the sweetest.

We basically just walked around, visited the shops, and had some lunch. I enjoyed the shopping. I knew I was paying more than I needed to for every single thing I bought, but I didn't really care. This was the only real chance I had at shopping while we were there and it was fun to buy Vivi and Stella some treasures. I bought some dresses and name stamps, and then a beautiful scroll with Vivi's Chinese name on it.

Shamian Island has all of these statues and it is kind of a tradition for all adopted children to get their picture with one of them. I thought it was kind of a silly tradition before, but when I got there I suddenly HAD to have that picture. It was just crazy to be there after seeing pictures of all the other little loves before her pose in that spot. It felt like her adoption wasn't complete until she got that picture. First Stella posed with her and then she posed by herself. At that spot we ran into a family that I follow on Instagram. I turned around and they were just there, and it was fun to meet them and their new daughter. We also met another family at lunch and Stella asked me: "Mom, how do you know that girl?" I told her I didn't, and had just met them. I don't know how she isn't used to having a mom that talks to everyone, but sometimes she still is surprised.

We had lunch at Lucy's which is a restaurant that caters to American adoptive families. I had a hamburger and it was pretty tasty. The only trouble with my meal was that by this point my tummy had shrunk tremendously and I could not finish it.

Soon our morning was over and it was time to head back to the hotel for our little lady to have a nap.

That night we went over to one of the malls and had dinner at the food court. We had tried to eat there the first night, but didn't have any cash and Brent had really wanted to go and try again. Brent really wanted some actual Chinese food and Stella and I had gone on a walk earlier that afternoon to check out some local spots and NONE of them looked appetizing at all so the mall food court was a great option. They had all sorts of choices. We learned that Vivi loves soup. She gobbled hers up like she hadn't eaten in days. While eating dinner Stella was reaching another breaking point. I could tell she was really homesick by this point. All of the changes and being away from home were hitting hard. So to cheer her up I let her get some really expensive Häagen-Dazs ice cream. That one scoop cost as much as Brent and I's dinner combined, but it made her very happy. When it was time to go I said "let's go" to Vivi in Chinese and she totally understood me. She came right over to me and grabbed my hand and was ready to go. Her face was all lit up because she had actually understood something I had said. At this point I didn't really realize how much Chinese she understood, so it was really cute.

We just hung out at home the rest of the night. I popped some popcorn and Vivi loved it. We watched some bad Chinese children's TV shows and then went to bed. Except Vivi did not want to go to bed, she wanted to play with Stella. And she did this adorable thing with her daddy where she pretended like she was going to sleep when he would walk in the room. She would be standing in the crib, and he would come in and she would slink down, put her thumb in her mouth, and grab her blanket. It was hilarious, our little trickster.

Things for me and how I felt about Vivien were getting easier too. I was starting to think she was the cutest thing I had ever seen. Every time we left the hotel room, I loved watching her watch me in the hotel hallway while Brent carried her to the elevators. She would always look back at me and make sure I was following and give me little smiles. It was so sweet.

No comments: