Thursday, July 10, 2014

Wrapping It Up....

I have been home now for four days, so ready to wrap my head around the trip and finish the blog posts.  This was the first time I have not been able to access my email from my laptop (click here to learn why I learned why I could only use my gmail ap from the Ipad), so was unable to download my photos to send to Mike. Any posted were sent from a team mates Iphone. Journaling was cut short, because I was doing so on my ipad, which makes it a bit more challenging especially when exhausted.

I'm going to try and fill in the parts of the story that were left off or not in detail.  I will try to to not ramble too much and let the photos speak for themselves...

Since we had an early morning flight, it allowed us to spend an afternoon with the kids that wasn't on the agenda. I was warmly greeted by Min Yer, once again. She is such a girlie-girl. She loves to have her nails painted, carries around a purple wash cloth, and loves to be photographed in front of the flowers. I won't tell you how many flower pics I have of her!

Stephen, ChenChen, Robin and DengDeng out for a walk, something they always ask to do.

Sweet Oliver recently had his bilateral cleft lip repaired, but not yet his palate.

Ed and DengDeng share a talent for art. Here DengDeng was coloring in Ed's dragon.

Getting precious Lily out of her crib.

ChenChen always looking for a ride!

First craft; tissue flowers and butterflies to brighten the place up. Even the nannies participate.

On the square next to our hotel. Our team's redhead was the most popular for photos. We told her she should charge and use it as a fundraiser for next year's trip!
Day Two started off at the fossil park, which was posted about already. When we returned to our hotel, we crashed a beautiful wedding party! Turns out they typically have two parties; one with the bride's family, where she wears the white dress, and one with the groom's family, where she wears red.

The bride's other dress on display.

We wanted photos of the couple, but they insisted we get in the picture!

Ed's buddy, whom we saw on our walks every day. He loved it when we stopped to greet him. He was especially happy later in the week when we left him with a Polaroid photo.

A rare smile from Sarah. She even sang quietly to herself this visit, something I have never heard her do in my years since meeting her in 2008.

Sing spends most of his time jumping on the trampoline or playing in the ball pit.

I love this shot of ChenChen, as he is always staring intently into anything with a reflection, such as eye glasses or a camera lens.
Jian is such a risk taker. He loved it when Raya would scoot him around, the faster, the better!

Feeding time from some of my favorite nannies! Lunch this day was dumplings and congee.
Ying and I picked out some umbrella strollers for the orphanage this afternoon. We hope they continue to be used when we're gone. We used them at the park and for walks on the grounds of the orphanage.

Group photo at the park on Day three, which I already posted about while in China.

Following the morning at the park and being followed by paparazzi (this time official), we did some bubbles and more crafts with the kids.

I also presented the director some blankets Erica's mom made, along with some pillow case dresses students at my school made for MLK Day of Service. I can't wait to show my students these beautiful models....

After our morning trip to the Buddhist museum, we made tutus, which is always a hit with kids and adults alike.

Lunch with Sally, our new Chinese friend with the Canadian accent, in the striped dress.
Since the sidewalks were washed clean by the rain, we redecorated with some sidewalk tattoos. Well, at least three grown men did!

Claire, one of four new children at the orphanage since last year. She has a severe skin disorder that has her skin all flaky. She also has difficulty focusing her eyes. They insisted on us not holding her the first couple of days, as she was covered in cream, but I think they got tired of us asking;)

David, a new young man with cerebral palsy.
PARTY TIME!!!  We celebrated with the upstairs kids by giving them Pop Rocks. Always a fun reaction when they realize what's going on...

Getting lunch ready...

And face painting....

Finally, birthday cake, and watermelon, and lychee nut, and banana, etc...

And our least favorite, saying goodbye...
A rare, priceless smile from Michael. Best shot of the entire trip for me!

Another new boy, Nick, sharing a moment with Lauren

I gained a new respect and bond with Liu this trip.

The new director lights up whenever she sees Wu Ping.

Two sets of beautiful eyes!

Hugh and I kicking it back in the ball pit and taking selfies.

Min Yer's other best friend, Ying.

Love this photo of many of the nannies in their Go.Be.Love shirts that many people in the states generously sponsored.

The team, right before we left.

Group shot

Always tough to say goodbye. The next morning we headed back to Beijing to meet up and swap experiences with the Fushun team. We checked into our hotel and walked and shopped around the Tiananmen Square area.  Saturday we headed to the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. The area has really grown since I first went there several years ago.  There is now a new base area with shuttles to what was once the parking lot. This was a great improvement, as there was very little parking. However, on the downside, the local farmer's shops are being removed. Our guide told us that some of them wore shirts stating "Give us back our land." Sadly, I don't think they will be there next year...
The tram I rode up in posted its' claim to fame; Bill Clinton once rode in it.

The entire two groups. You are supposed to see part of The Great Wall behind us, as we are on top of it, but as you can see, it was a bit smoggy that day!

Me thinks they were a bit tired afterwards!

Shopping and an acrobat show both came later. Neither disappointed!  Sunday we left without a hitch, but us Seattle group had a 28+ hour trip on our hands! Once again I am happy to be home with my family, sleeping in my own bed even though sleep is totally messed up these days. As always, I have brought back a little more of China in my heart...

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