OK....so you are all going to kill me when I say there will be no photos in this post. It's 5:30am, we are in the pitch black in our hotel room with our little sweetie sleeping (finally!) in the crib right next to us. No way I'm finding a camera and a cord right now in the disaster zone that is this room, but I promise I will later. Suffice it to say that if you thought she was a cutie before, you are really in for a treat because she is quite literally the cutest kid on planet earth.
So, a little rundown of our day after the Great Nanning Balloon Search....
Our guide, Cindy, was running a little late, which was giving both of us agita (severe understatement). When she finally showed up, we were ready for a little chit chat time, here's how you run our camera, can I get you some tea kinda thing. Nope. Turns out, she had just met E downstairs and they (E and two nannies from the SWI) were on our floor in the sitting area right near the elevators, directly across from us. So, Cindy basically just said, "Get ready", grabbed the camera and was off. Now the 150 degree room felt like about 250 degrees.
Our door was wide open so we could hear a little pitter patter, and some chatter, maybe a mini-scream. Next thing you know, there she is, in all of her padded glory, Yiquan! (EE-Chwahn) She was in many layers of clothing, including some favorites we had seen before in pictures. She came into the room and was pretty curious about the balloons and other things we had laying around. She was carrying the little cell phone that we had sent in her first care package. The nannies told us that everything is "hers" and that when she got off the van she tried to take along everything in it. She kept trying to pick up more things without putting anything else down first.
Overall, things went incredibly smoothly. E was very sad when her nannies left, following them down the hall to the elevator. We then walked the floor of the hotel which is a huge circle several times while she calmed down. When we passed the open door to our room, she'd slow down, look in, and then keep walking. Eventually we came into the room, signed some papers with Cindy, got our instructions for tomorrow, and Cindy left. As we expected, E was very, very sad and looking for her "Mama", and she didn't mean me. She obviously loved her Mama very much, and was truly very loved. We are so grateful for that.
We spent maybe an hour with little E at the door, very sad to be with us. We tried to soothe her and let her cry it out, which was very good for her, and for us. When she seemed a little (and, I mean just a little) calmer, P and I moved into the room and started playtime. Or, crazy time. Whatever you want to call it but P said we were like a Vaudeville Act with no talent just acting completely nuts. Singing, dancing, making a human choo-choo train of two, pushing balloons around in the stroller, singing a song called "We are crazy! We love Yiquan! Ni Hao Yiquan!" to the tune of "Let's Go, Red Sox!" Nuts. Totally and completely insane. Before you knew it, she wanted in. We were playing with the stuffed animals, bopping things on the head with the balloons, kissing the dolls, and exaggerating how fun it was to kiss and hug them. Her eyes lit up a few times so we ratcheted up the giggly crazy play until she couldn't help but get all crazy herself. She even answered the toy cell phone and said "Bye!" We had a breakthrough.
Next came Cheerios and snacks, which she seems to love. She was eating them and feeding them to us. Every once in awhile she would take a sip of water and she clearly knows how to use a straw. She is very smart and understands cause and effect.
While she seemed OK with all of this, she wasn't smiling, just taking it all in. We had been told she is VERY hard to get a smile out of, for anyone. Every once in awhile, though, her eyes would have a little glimmer, and especially with the toy phone when she said "Bye", there would be a little smile.
We played for awhile and then realized that she must be hungry, so we ventured out to Walmart to get some cup noodles. Earlier (when Cindy was still here) we had tried to put her in the stroller and were met with a fierce resistance. I think after pushing around the balloons and toys and dolls she decided she liked the idea and hopped right in! She was an angel in Walmart, we handed her her cup noodles and she held them intently, letting go just long enough so they could be rung in.
When we got back to the hotel, she finally decided it was OK to shed some of those layers (this whole day took place with her wearing her coat and sweating bullets in the hotel room) after she saw us take our coats off. Monkey see, Monkey do! So, we hung out, ate noodles, stood at the window which seems to be her favorite place and where she's set up her "shop."
Bath time went remarkably well. She did not like the idea of getting undressed so we just did things gradually, stuck our feet in the tub, P hopped in the tub in his boxers to show her it was OK. We had been told that she likes the bath, so we figured this would be an easy one. Not so much at first, but then it was OK. Once she had poured water all over her padded, super-absorbent clothes (and mine), I think she agreed that getting undressed was a good idea. She let us wash her up and powder her up and she seemed pretty content.
We came to the bed for our first attempt at rest. She REFUSED to lay down, but she sort of laid on me and dozed off. This is when the fun begins. P gently picked her up to take her to the crib, she went down for 4 seconds, and game over. Up again, ready for snacks and anything else except sleep. More noodles until we ran out. P ran to the closest fast food joint (KFC of course) for more food. Meanwhile, E fed me Cheerios and banana and tried to scrape up the last of the noodles. We played until P got back and she enjoyed a few french fries. Now it's almost midnight here, and P and I are wearing out. P said that E was like that last person at the party who just doesn't get the hint that the fun is over. We thought she would be tucking us in.
So, we figured why not do a few more activities like brushing teeth and showering! I brushed mine, she let me brush hers. Then it was time for my shower and there was NO WAY that was happening without E joining me. It's a walk-in shower, and she tried to walk in right behind me, socks and PJs and all. Thank goodness it's a glass shower because we somehow managed to keep her on the dry side of glass, although she did try to open the door and jump in.
In our final attempt at rest, we put the crib right up to the window so she could fall asleep looking at the lights of Nanning. This seemed to soothe her, and she slept.
Me, not so much. Maybe 2 hours, and then P and I talked about the day, and now we're doing a little silent middle of the night blogging. We've got a very busy morning. We are worried because we will be seeing Cindy and the nannies again, and we hope that this doesn't set E back too much. But that's OK, we'll bring out the Vaudeville Act and cheer our sweet angel up again.
She's perfect, smart, funny, adorable, and ours. She's so much more than we could have ever, ever wished for. She was loved and she clearly knows how to love. We are so lucky to have this sweet little (and I mean little!) girl in our lives. In a few short hours, she has already brought so much joy to our lives. We are pinching ourselves, wondering how we could have ever been so blessed to have this little, darling princess in our lives.
We know you want the good stuff (pics!) and I promise to post soon! We are running on fumes as our little angel sleeps.
Love, T + P + E