Friday, May 30, 2008

Guiyang, Day Four -- Hanguoshu Waterfall

Today we took a long drive to see Hanguoshu Waterfall and the bonsai park surrounding it. It was a nice chance to relax in the car, take in the scenery and learn about the many minority cultures in Guizhou. We were able to video many of our guide's "lessons" about Guizhou, to save for Addison and to enjoy ourselves.

Our guide, Richard, has such a heart for children and for China. It is clear that he has a mission to make China better for people, especially for children. He is not blind to the problems his country faces, and we discussed these at great length, but he's also very proud of the rich heritage in this country.

Addison continues to do well, although bedtime is a bit of an issue. It seems his biggest fears come out at this time, but he's falling asleep without his pacifier (woo hoo!) and only waking once in the night, briefly. He will also periodically put on his backpack and request help to put on his shoes so he can go home. He'll ask about 8-10 times per day to go home and I tell him, "I am mama. This is papa. We love you." He's not amused by this, but quite honestly, I wouldn't be either. I'm actually quite pleased that he hasn't been an instant cuddle-bug because something just doesn't ring true to that, you know? It makes sense that he's hesitant, although he does seem to like us. He just doesn't trust us yet. No worries, we've got a long time to develop that because we are his forever family.

Things we have learned about Addison in the past few days:
1. He doesn't like to be barefoot.
2. He doesn't like his hands wet or dirty.
(No worries, I can handle sensory issues. We've already started working on them!)
3. He loves "Automan" - some cartoon character that he apparently watched all the time.
4. He loves cars, splashing his feet square in the middle of a puddle, and gymnastics.
5. He likes peanut butter, but not crackers. He sucks the peanut butter off the cracker and then gives the soggy cracker to me. Thanks, buddy!
6. When he's about to do something he thinks he shouldn't, he turns to look at one of us and then gives us THE CUTEST SMILE, then proceeds with his plan of action.
7. He loves to mimic and repeat, although his articulation is very poor. I'm sure speech therapy will be in our future, but I'm not worried about this as his possible issues are nothing like Kate's major speech issues.
8. He snores when he sleeps.
9. He has an infectious laugh.
10. He gets stressed out when around a lot of children and starts acting out (pinching ears, hitting, etc.). I'm not sure where this comes from, but I think once he starts feeling safe and trusting us, this will improve.


More later. Tomorrow we're visiting a Chinese Training School, which focuses on performing arts and learning English. Should be fun!

Lots of love from Beautiful Guiyang,

The Lucky Ones


Laurie McLean said...

It's so good to hear about your days and to see Addison with you guys! Clearly you are meant to be together and I am so happy that he is already bringing you guys so much joy!

Karen M said...

Wow! That waterfall is something!! Addison looks more and more comfortable with y'all. I couldn't agree with you more about it being a good thing that he's not overly affectionate right off. As you said, he's got the rest of time.... Those pictures of him kissing Scott and him kissing you are the sweetest! Love all the pictures. Hugs.

Anonymous said...

Hey Scott-Everything looks great! Addison looks like a wonderful little boy! We're so happy for both of you. Meghan says Addison, "has a bright light that comes through even in pictures from across the world." Best wishes for a great rest of your trip, a moving cultural experience and a safe flight home.
PS-Cubs have been kicking butt and the soups have suuccckkkeeeddd since you left. GT has been real boring and everyone has been real "grumpy" if you know what I mean. Peace love and don't forget my stuff. Hahaha.
The Farrs