This morning we met Rebecca, who is the best guide ever, to go shopping. She took us to a neaby shopping center area with a large open area surrounded by shop and a mall connected. It was pretty crowded when we arrived this morning. Rebecca said that this was not very crowded, and we said, “It looks pretty crowded to us.” Erica’s dad said, “This is about as many people as there are in Starkville.” 🙂 Rebbeca said that when we meet up after lunch it would be filled with people. Aaron’s mom reminded me while we were shopping that this was like shopping right before Christmas in the US. There biggest holiday, the Spring Festival (Chinese New Year) is the 26th of this month. I usually avoid shopping during that time during the US! I can’t stand the crowds! But it was great having Rebecca with us! She showed us the best places (ie. cheapest) to buy different things.
First, we went to a dvd store. Most of the dvds were $2USD! Rebecca instructed us on which type to look for because only certain types work in our dvd players back home. She also checked with us to make sure the ones we wanted were in English and not just English subtitles. Eli and Titus, Caleb picked out 5-6 dvds that ya’ll will like. Rachel grabbed everything she could get her hands on! We let her pick out a dvd (Teletubbies); we said no to the SpongeBob. I also bought her a Cinderella dvd. I asked one of the store clerks to help me pick out a cd with well-known Chinese children’s songs because Rachel loves to sing. They had Bolt on dvd which is still in theaters in the US. We also got Planet Earth–two dvds(one with episodes 1-6, the second with episodes 7-11) for $5USD each. I have been wanting those for a while.
Next, we went to a children’s shoe store. While we were walking there, Erica’s oldest son Carter told Caleb, “Good! All we have to do there is sit!” It turns out the store was too small for all of us to get inside, so the guys all waited outside. At this point we are all thinking the guys should have just stayed at the hotel anyway. The shoes were so inexpensive! Most of them are too gaudy for my taste, and it is hard to find ones that don’t have Barbie, Snoopy, or McDonalds on them. I did find a cute pair of pink MaryJanes for Rachel which she had to put on immediately. They were only $7USD. I decided to buy a lavendar pair of the same style since they were so cheap. I found a few other pairs I liked, but they did not have Rachel’s size. Christy, I was thinking about you and wishing I knew your girls’ shoe sizes.
Next, we went to shop for underwear for Youyou(pronounced Yo-yo), the Hammonds little girl. She is so tiny that they haven’t been able to find any panties small enough to stay on her! She is so sweet and just looks like a little doll.
Rebecca took us to a pearl market next and helped us pick out good quality pearls. I bought a pearl necklace to give Rachel when she’s older perhaps for her wedding. I also bought a few other things to give her over the years and a few gifts for others back home.
Then guys navigated the extremely packed two-story McDonald’s with the kids while we finished pearl shopping. Then we headed to McDonalds. It was insanely crazy there. You just have to wait til someone gets up and grab a seat one at a time wherever you can. Poor Tommy had to navigate the stairways in this crowded place with Suhui in her stroller!
Something funny I forgot to share yesterday: When Rebecca was instructing us about the Thai restaurant and she told us to tell them “No napkin. They charge for napkins.” Erica asked her, “What are we supposed to use?” Rebecca rolled her eyes and said, “Bring your own napkins! You Americans spend too much money!” She is hilarious!
Rebecca also takes such good care of us. She will tell us where to go to buy something; then she will say, “I will just come with you.” She even came to McDonalds and ordered for us even though we have navigated McDonalds fine with their point and order menu they have for foreigners.
We have also had several other adoptive families we have met here speak highly of Lifeline, our agency. Apparently, they have a good reputation.
Some suggestions for traveling families–bring your own package of napkins/papertowels or buy a roll of paper towels when you get here. I usually just carry a package of wipes to clean up with after eating. Also, paper plates would be handy if you plan to eat in the room. We have not been able to buy paper plates here. We brought lots of snacks which were lifesavers for us and are all gone. And we have eaten in the room alot since Rachel is not a lot of fun to eat out with or to shop with for that matter. We keep telling here she better enjoy this because it’s going to be a while before we take her out anywhere once we get home! 🙂
Shopping mall in Guangzhou
Decoration in the mall for the Spring Festival (Chinese New Year). It will be the Year of the Ox.
Shopping center in Guangzhou
Caleb having loads of fun shopping!
Suhui in her stroller
Carter, Caleb and Jackson playing in front of the pearl store while mamas shop
Suhui in the playroom. Whenever she sees a photo of herself, she says “Hui hui!” (hway-hway). That’s what her foster family and the people at the orphanage called her.
Caleb, Carter, and Jackson got to have some great rough-and-tumble boy fun yesterday. Thought you might like to see Caleb having fun!
Here he and Carter are playing dodgeball in the playroom yesterday
After shopping we came back to the hotel so that Rachel could get a nap. Tommy went to Starbucks and was then going to take the boys to the playground. I think Rachel and I will head that way now. She’s awake and has energy to burn!