Welcoming Lily!

Friday, February 16, 2007

What a week!

Photo descriptions:

1) Eating breakfast today - note the waffle flying in the air. It takes a lot of food to fill her up. Also note that my sister Lexi does my hair in the morning before she goes to school.

2) Sisters before Lexi took off to school today.

3) The next three photos are not staged. Lily helping take laundry out of the washer today. "I do laundry."

4) Lily taking out a cleaning cloth from the washer.

5) Lily then proceeds with the cleaning cloth to wipe the floor. Charles and I were amazed. Where does she come up with this stuff? "I do floors."

Well we've been home almost a week now and everyone has turned their sleep around and recovered from jet lag. I was the last and spent many nights awake between 1-4 am. Lexi had no problems and Charles and Lily had minimal difficulty. Lily is a great sleeper (usually between 10-11 hours per night plus a 2-hour nap during the day). Last night she went to bed at 7:15 am and awoke at 6:15 am. We are really pleased with this, as we are people who need our sleep. Cross your fingers this continues.

Lily got one outing per day this week. She went to school for show and tell in Lexi's class. She loved being with all the kids and Lexi loved having her in the classroom. Lily also went to Charles's office and my old office. She got a trip to Toys R Us to buy another new car seat and a little car of her own. She also visited her family doctor where she checked out great for her health and received 3 shots. Lily really wasn't bothered about the shots, she is tough. Tomorrow she got invited to a birthday party of one of Lexi's classmates. She will get to swim and likes to do that.

Charles was also able to obtain both a health card and social insurance number for Lily this week. This was huge as now she can begin to apply for Canadian citizenship and get a Canadian passport so she can travel outside of Canada.

We've had many calls of congratulations, gifts and lots of flowers (lilies of course). What great friends and family we have.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Posted the photos now

I've posted some of the best photos since we received Lily, please begin at the entry We've got her to see the photos from the trip.

I'll keep posting to this blog as it is an easy way for everyone to get to know Lily Racquel Zi Tao Wright.

More photos

(photo descriptions - 1. Charles and the girls getting some rest on the Vancouver to Toronto flight. 2. Michael, Laurie, Simone and Maxine [This is Charles's older brother's family] meeting Lily in Toronto. 3. Lily's first day at home in Canada.

I wanted to just add a few other photos. Everyone had a really good first day at home today. We worked on unpacking and getting our house further baby proofed as Lily is a destroyer of anything that can be ripped apart. She will stay in the playpen for a few minutes and this is enough time to be able to load the dishwasher or help Lexi with something.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

We are finally home!

(Photo descriptions - The final night in Beijing our agency threw a Goodbye China and birthday party for all the babies. It was a great party and such a wonderful thing to do as all the babies were between 13 - 15 months so they had never had a b-day party yet. As you can see it was festive and Lily got to really grab hold of the cake, which she liked smearing all over herself rather than eating.)

Ok Friday was literally the longest day in my life, with crossing the date line our Friday turned out to be 36 hours long. We had breakfast twice and I don't want to see an airport or the inside of an airplane for at least six months. But happy to announce we are all home safe and sound but somewhat tired.

The flight from Beijing to Vancouver was almost 11 hours and 39 babies were on the flight! Needless to say the plane was pretty crazy. Lily got over stimulated and was hard to calm down but finally slept for about 4.5 hours of the flight. Then again it was "Amazing Race" style to make our next flight and get Lily through immigration in Vancouver. We had to leave our stroller behind as we couldn't wait for them to bring it up from the plane and just left it in order to make it to our next flight. No time could be wasted and even with that we managed to miss our flight but were put on a 30-minute later flight to Toronto. I slept for most of the Vancouver to Toronto flight, while Charles and Lexi and Lily played really nicely.

We had a great welcome home visit at the airport hotel by my brother in law and his family. Thanks to them for delivering congee and tofu for Lily (thanks to my other sister in law for teaching Laurie how to make congee). It came in so handy as our car would not start (11 pm). I guess the harsh cold killed the battery. CAA came to start the car so we loaded everything up and had Lily in her car seat (first time). About 2 km later the car's electrical system just shut down while driving. We lucked out that the car decided to do this in front of a Holiday Inn so I marched Lexi and Lily into the hotel and got a room and Charles was left to deal with getting the car out of the entrance to the hotel. My car was doing crazy things and the back window was down all night, not functioning, so he had to unload the whole car again and bring everything into the Holiday Inn. We had a good rest at the hotel and a nice breakfast but my car is being towed back to London and we hired a mini van and driver to get us back to London. We finally arrived home at 10am Saturday.

Now Lily really feels like she is ours! We've given her a tour of the house. She's looked at many toys, smiled, seems very happy and had a nice lunch. I put her down for a nap and had one myself. Lexi is now giving her a piano demonstration. We thought our house was child proofed but it is not.

I'll get to posting photos later today, I know you are all dying to see her. My sister in law says she looks nothing like her old photo.

So happy to be home. China was an amazing experience and Lily is so great! We are all so happy.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

The last post before we travel home

This will be my last post from this amazing adventure, not only do we have an awesome daughter, we have had great travels. I know it seems crazy to pick up a daughter from another country, live out of suitcases, ride on a tour bus everyday, eat food you've never tried before and shop till you drop, but we've done it all and really are in good shape. Thank goodness our active Lily needs lots of sleep. We all get a good rest every night.

I need to do some catch up on the trip. We did go to the doctor for clearing Canadian immigration and Lily fared really well. She weighed in at 21.5 pounds and is 75 % in height and 50 % in weight on the Asian baby growth chart scale. She has a small head circumference but the doctor is not worried about her as she is so active and walking and talking and "generally crazy" with energy. Our babe I think was the largest weight in the group at her 9.8 kilos. I think another two babies were 9.7 and 9.6. Lily also has the most hair and eats the most. Although her eating did get the best of her last night. She just won't stop eating and filled herself up so much that there was only one way to go - out! Needless to say I've been baptized by my daughter and my gag reflex did not kick in so that means I am her mother now. We are not feeding her as much today because she can not regulate her intake yet.

Back to the travels. After the doctor we went to the Beijing zoo and saw the giant pandas. The weather was 16 C - the highest for this day in the history of weather in China. We also saw some zebra and Lexi really wanted to see the giraffe but when we got to their cage they were not there. At night I stayed in with Lily and Charles and Lexi went to the Chinese acrobat show. Lexi loved this and is still talking about it. Lily and I went for Japanese food in the hotel and she ate an entire order of tofu all by herself plus rice cereal, fruit, biscuits and milk. Her stomach was so big I don't know how she kept all the food in but she did and had a good night's sleep.

Now for the shopping the past two days we've done the silk market, pearl market and clothing market. I am great at getting the price I want and can do it so fast. My favorite place was the pearl market, gorgeous pearls and so inexpensive. The stores would string what you wanted while you waited. I'll post a photo of my baby gift pearl set (necklace, ring and earrings). Thank you Charles! The clothing market was an adventure. Shopping was so much fun and I got great deals, for example 7 pairs of children size shoes for 50 yuan each which is about $7 a pair. These shoes are nice and I would have paid $80 in Canada for a similar pair. Also picked up a Gucci bag and Rolex oyster watch. They are really nice fakes! Plus I had to buy more luggage to get everything home.

This morning we all went on the tea house tour to learn about the Chinese tea culture and of course more shopping. I really loved the lychee and rose tea and the best part everyone loved was the "pee pee boy" who tells you if the tea water temperature is correct. Again I will have to post a photo of this. Basically if the water is hot enough this little clay "pee pee boy" will tell you by squirting water out of his ?EKGIM:#$$#%#.

Tonight is the final night and we end it by our agency throwing a birthday party for all the babies. Everyone is going to wear their purchases and Lexi can't wait to wear her red silk Chinese dress with her purple leather boots. Lily also has a Chinese outfit she will wear. It will be a great party. I can't believe we have to leave already, today is the first day I've felt like I'm ready to go home. I'm tired of washing dishes and bottles out of the hotel room sink. I miss the dishwasher and Lily needs to be contained to a high chair for eating so it will be nice to have one of those as well.

So since we've come to China the travels have been great, weather has been exceptional, we've all stayed healthy and we get to bring home Lily.

My thoughts on Beijing are this city is amazing and the growth is exceptional. The traffic is a nightmare all day long. The Chinese say it is rush hour all day long. We've seen lots of the 2008 Olympic sites but I can't see how this city will work with the Olympic crowds.

When we were in Guangzhou it was a much "wilder" city, more exotic. Beijing is very cosmopolitan and going very Western very fast. We've learned so much about the Chinese culture and we all really like it here. We've also made some really nice friends with the other families and we hope to see them again in the future.

We leave here on Friday and get back to Toronto on Friday. We don't know if we will return home late Friday night or stay over and drive back on Saturday. It all just depends on how tired we are and the weather.

See you all soon.

Charles, Jill, Lexi and Lily

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Beijing, The Great Wall and Miss Lily

Our travels to Beijing went really well, slight delay at the airport caused us not to get to the hotel until 1:30 am, but Lily had a great first plane ride. She slept for half of it and then was very good for the rest of the flight and the bus ride to the hotel. The hotel we are staying at is opulent and very comfortable and we are really close to many of the 2008 Olympic spots and see the construction going on. The Bird Nest facility and swimming facility are awesome. We are close the many pizza restaurants and Lexi chose Big Pizza to go to last night. We all had a "western food fest" with a buffet we all enjoyed. Lily got her first taste of ice cream. Of course, she liked it. She continues to eat everything we give her and is such a good eater.

The first day in Beijing we toured the Summer Palace, which is quite impressive. Basically an empress wanted a summer cottage, so she had thousands of people build her a lake and an estate which is amazing.

At night we went to Big Pizza and the local department store so I could get more memory for my camera. I've taken too many photos and ran out of space. Well Lily decided to have a huge #2 diaper that was explosive and caused us quite the stress. People here do not like to see any baby skin exposed to the air and will come up and tell you to cover her up. Chinese babies usually do not go outside at least for the first year, a cultural thing. I had to take her into the department store and throw away her tights and clean up her dress (Auntie Linh if it wasn't your dress that you gave her I would have thrown it away. So Lily is bare legged, Charles was taken to task and had to go buy her pants for the walk back to the hotel. He said they were the most expensive baby pants in Beijing but when you need pants you need pants. He also bought a larger snugli so we could go up the Great Wall in the morning.

The weather is Beijing has been record breaking warm. Yesterday 12 C and probably the same today. I do not have a winter coat here and haven't had to buy one yet.

Today was the Great Wall - we went to the Bading area and climbed up four towers. This is an impressive sight in the world and it was warm and not windy so we had a great climb. Lily slept through half of the hike but was awake for the "roller coaster" down. It was like a toboggan run/roller coaster that you went down on. It was lots of fun to ride down to Bear Park and back to the bus.

Also shopping was on the agenda today with visits to a jade factory and a cloisonne factory. I did purchase a beautiful jade bangle that I'm supposed to pass along to Lily when she gets married. The Chinese know how to sell product. It was a full day and Lily is now sleeping soundly.

Monday we take all the children to be checked out by a doctor for their medical approvals. I'm sure Lily will pass with flying colours. We will find out her true weight. My guess is 23-25 pounds.

Lexi and Lily are great sisters. Lexi can't keep her hands off of Lily and tries to wake her up in the morning for play time.

Lily has some Chinese words for bottle, mom and dad. She also understand hello and goodbye. She is developmentally on target. She is amazing and we can't wait until everyone can meet her face to face.

They guys are all planning to watch the Super Bowl during breakfast tomorrow. Go Colts!

Signing off for Sunday night.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Touring, shopping and those dimples!

Photo descriptions

1) Lily and I at the Chen Family Temple today
2) Me and my best girls
3) Hanging out in the park across from our hotel
4) Playing with some of the other girls and Lexi's friend Camille who was also 6.5 and got a sister. Lexi and Camille became good friends.

Hello everyone - just back from the best foot massage ever - bet you didn't think I would write that today. It was another great day. Life is easy, Lily is really taking it easy on us so we are really enjoying our days here in China. Today we did touring. Although we woke at 4:30 am we were all asleep by 9:00 pm the night before so a full night was had by all.

We went to breakfast at 6:00 am and went to breakfast again at 9:00 am. Then the touring began and we went to Chen family Temple. There were porcelain, wood, brick and stone carvings. It was beautiful.
Then off to a great lunch. The food was prepared Hainan style (this is an island off the coast of China, that is their Hawaii). The food was excellent. Lexi even got adventurous. Lexi got a special "Year of the Dragon" jade necklace today and is so happy with her special treasure. We got Lily a "Year of the Rooster" inside painting bottle that the artist painted her name into.

Ok, about Lily. She continues to not stop eating and smiles all day long. She is so happy and like her Uncle Michael "Ducky" has dimples at the tops of her cheeks. Lexi and Lily love each other. I've never heard Lexi laugh so much or be so happy. She is such a big help and loves it when Lily bonks her on the head.

Our hotel is amazing, we've got a large suite where there is lots of room to move about it. The room overlooks the Pearl River (China's third largest river). Lexi and I ventured off shoe shopping today. It was great. Shoes for $3, we also found a really girly pink snowsuit for Lily because we have to leave Guangzhou tomorrow afternoon and go to Beijing where it is winter. The weather here in this subtropical climate has been perfect 70 degrees F and sunny.

Some of the babies played together this afternoon and we all just watched as they have their own little society between each other. Lily trades toys with others and makes this funny sound when someone takes her toy. Another girl was the dominant "queen of the castle".

Lily is such a loving little girl and likes to dance and watch Chinese TV and eat. She went to bed at 7:00 pm tonight so I went and took advantage of the foot massage in the hotel. Now many of you know I'm a spa queen and well this treatment was amazing. The Chinese should export this whole process, better than anything I've had in North America.

There are tons of groups here picking up their children. There is a large group from the US and Spain plus our Canadian group. All the children look so great. We received more official paperwork today, including Lily's Chinese birth certificate.

The main reason we are going to Beijing is to visit the Canadian Embassy to get ready to take her into Canada. So Beijing is mostly touring.

Well that is all for today. Sorry I can't upload photos. I will add the photos when we return to Canada. I've got to purchase another memory card tomorrow as my camera is full!


Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Wednesday in China

Photo descriptions
1) Sisters getting to know each other
2) Hey I'm sure cute (thanks Linda for the hat!)
3)Sisters dressing alike in panda themed outfits
4) My first swim in the hotel pool. She loved it.
5) Girls dressed alike again in "Daddy's little Valentine's shirts". It was a suprise for Charles.

It is Wed.in China now and we've had another great day with Lily as part of our family. Her vivacious personality came out today. She is a "jolly jumper" doesn't sit still, says mama and ate dim sum (sticky rice, congee, Chinese noodles) for breakfast. We are all in love with her and Lexi is so happy. Lexi harbors no jealousy for the lack of attention paid to her.

G & G - Lexi has been shopping for herself and Lily and bought some Barbies' with pink hair, rubber ducks for Lily and a new baseball cap for the sun.

We've had beautiful warm weather here in Guangzhou.

Today everyone is talking about the alligator that was decapitated at the table at the restaurant during dinner last night. It was a local who ordered this, no one from our group.

We are all over jet lag as of today. Last night I finally slept!

Lily has huge thighs and is wearing 18 -24 month clothes. I have to go buy her shoes as none that I brought fit her. She has a wide foot.

As for sleeping, I give her a bottle (I hold her), once the bottle is finished you hand her a blanket and put her in her crib and she goes to sleep in two minutes and doesn't make a sound until morning.

That's all for today.