Day 14 – Free Day And Packing For Home!!!

5 06 2013

My eyes opened at 4am. I knew this was our last full day in China! I waited until 5:30 am and then I made everyone get up and get our day started. NO, I did not have so much to accomplish that I needed to start early! Today was a free day. We had zero plans or appointments! I just wanted to get the day started so we could be closer to home. Honestly, I wanted to start packing but Doug said it was too early. We ate a leisurely breakfast (Yep, eggs and toast again!) and then went to the hotel playground to allow Levi to burn off some of his energy! And boy does he have a lot of energy. Then it was off to catch a taxi. Doug wanted to visit this local plaza that we found last trip. They had the model airplanes that he collects for VERY cheap! This trip did NOT disappoint! He ended up getting his new planes for less than he paid two years ago. We could really make some money if we could buy these planes and sell them in the US! But my husband wants to keep them allJ No shocker for those who know him! I was very happy that he found exactly what he wanted. We left there and headed for Shaiman Island, one last time. On the way our Taxi was hit by a local city bus! We were in a car accident in China! Ready for this…the driver of the Taxi NOR the driver of the bus even stopped! They kept driving. Doug was riding in the front and he was about to panic! The Taxi driver let us out and then drove just a few hundred yards away and finally got out to check his car. Needless to say, we were not injured but I guess it would not have mattered if we had sustained an injury! NO ONE cared! (ONLY in China, my friends!)

Our last few minutes on Shaiman Island made me so sad! Not sure when we will be back, if ever. It’s hard to say goodbye to a place that holds such wonderful memories. I wanted to cry my eyes out, honestly! But my fear of making Levi upset forced me to hold myself together.

We got a bite for lunch/dinner and then headed to the hotel to begin the packing process. Let me be the first to tell you that my husband could fit an elephant in the suitcases if I asked him to. He is an amazing packer! We had so much to bring home…and he made it all fit. It seemed impossible to me but he’s THE MAN!!

So we are packed and ready to come home! We leave here at 6:30 am on 6/6 (China time) and arrive in Charlotte at 9:38pm on 6/6 (US time/Flight UA 3792) I wish I could say that was just one full day of travel but it is actually about 26 hours of travel! Oh joy! My favorite part!

Thank you so much for humoring me and reading about our journey! I am so thankful for all your comments and emails! They have gotten me through the days that I wanted to pack up and leave early! We are so thankful that God chose us to parent DongFang, Kun! He is such a treasure. God’s plan for our lives has been so much richer and fuller that we could have ever anticipated. He alone is to be praised for the miracle of Levi! He will officially be Michael Levi Kun Huber as soon as we land in Chicago.

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“The Lord has done this,
and it is marvelous in our eyes.”

Psalm 118:23





Day 8- The People’s Park

30 05 2013

The People’s Park was a beautiful family park. It was full of large trees that provided so much shade. The flowers, unique pavers, rock formations and birds singing made for such a peaceful morning. The park also had a mini amusement park, exercise equipment and a play ground. We enjoyed the quiet and relaxed atmosphere in the midst of a big city. Nanchang had a lot of rain last night, so the park was virtually empty. It was a great change of pace for our family. It was just what a soul’s needed to be surrounded by God’s beautiful creation! What an amazing time to praise Him for his glorious works!

After the park, our guide suggested a local restaurant for lunch. It was good food but so crowded! The service was not speedy so our little guy was over the entire lunch before it even began.

We headed back to the hotel for the day after lunch. We spent the afternoon in our room just getting to know Levi a little better. He had a great day. We have learned that he did NOT like to ride the child-sized rollercoaster in the amusement park. It went slow but he was not a fan. He did LOVE the exercise equipment and he was so balanced and coordinated. He did have two small melt downs. One was over the ride and the second was over being told NO again. He definitely wants to have his own way all the time. He is such a pleasant and happy child. We are feeling so blessed and thankful for the gift of this precious child.

We visit another Temple tomorrow:( morning and then our flight leaves Nanchang for Guangzhou at 5:30 pm. The day will be full but we are thrilled to be heading to Guangzhou. It’s one of our favorite places in China! It also means that we will be on the last leg of our journey to bring Levi home. In addition,  we are on step closer to being home and hugging those five faces we see on Skype each day. We miss them like CRAZY! My post could be delayed tomorrow so no one start to worry if you do not hear from us! We will post from Guangzhou as soon as possible!

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**Two pictures of Mini-Grace…..for YOU Emma Grace!

**Two pictures for you Dana! Remember over three years ago when we finally held our girls in this room! Doug and I had to find it one more time. It brought back all the emotions of that wonderful day!

“My friends, adoption is redemption. It’s costly, outrageous, expensive,

excruciating & exhausting. Buying back lives costs so much. When God set

out to redeem us, it killed him.”
~Derek Loux





Day 7 – Free Day

29 05 2013

 

This is the happy little guy that we wake up to each morning!

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He is full of personality!

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We got dressed and ready to start our day! (Our future’s so bright, we gotta wear shades:)

 

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This Chinese boarding school is right outside our hotel window!

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We decided that we did not need a tour guide and that we would act as our own tour guides for the day. So we headed off to the Tengwang Pavilion and then the Shengjin Tower.

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Then we headed off for Lunch/Dinner-nothing new..Papa John’s again! UUGGHH! Mini-Grace was waiting

for Emma Grace to wake up and call on Skype.

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And Levi finished his evening with some noodles. Now this boy can eat some noodles in no time flat! So funny!

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On a sad note. Our little guy had his first melt down tonight. He was actually being naughty and I corrected his behavior. He got very upset and started to cry. I guess once the tears started flowing, he released all the grieving of the past three day. It was heart breaking. I hated to see him like that but honestly I do believe it is better for him to grieve than keep it bottled up inside. He calmed down after about 10 minutes and then went to sleep quickly!

“Little Fox smiled and then thought for a moment. “Mama, will you be my forever mama?

“Always and Forever and no matter what.” She promised. “This is where you belong.

Here, with me, my sweet child. You are mine. The best gift in the whole wide world.

I will always love you and treasure you and celebrate the day you came, the day God Found us you!”

 

 

 





Day 6- Shopping?

28 05 2013

We started our day with breakfast…the same one…one egg, two pieces of toast and an Asian apple pear! I am thankful for good food but I may never eat these foods again when I return home! 6 days and counting of the same food:) (No flaming me….I know some people don’t have any food!) Levi ate like a champ. He had noodles, watermelon, cantaloupe, eggs. It’s hard to believe but he prefers a spoon and fork to chopsticks. I will admit he gets the food in his mouth anyway possible. I am not sure we should frequent fine dining anytime soon:) (HA!)

Our guide asked us to meet her at 10:00am to do some shopping. So, if you know anything about shopping in China, you know that I was so excited about walking through the local markets and buying some local goods. I made a list of people I needed to shop for (mainly five sweet faces from home) and then packed by backpack for the day. As we walked, I told our guide that we had made our way to the local Wal-Mart the night before. She stopped and looked at me and said, “So you already shop?” UUGGHH….she changed directions and then entered the local RT Mart. (Same concept as Wal-Mart) We walked around the store aimlessly. There was nothing there that we had not seen the evening before. We picked up just a few items and then were on our way- BACK to the hotel! Our day was over with the guide…..and we were on our own for the next 48 hours! She informed us that we had a day of rest the next day. “Free day!” she said.

So for the rest of the day, we played in the hotel room. Needless to say, it was a long afternoon. We played every game I could think of and with every toy I packed! We were all a little stir crazy. I am sure some of you are thinking that we should visit the hotel pool. Well, we would love to! BUT…Levi is so tiny that just as soon as you put him in the bathtub he starts to shiver and lips turn blue! The pool is inside and not heated. We do not think it’s a great idea for him to get so cold. We are hoping that the next hotel has an outside pool.

Our time spent with Levi allowed us to see a little more of his personality. He’s such a sweet boy. He loves to walk holding both our hands. He gets very upset if one of us drops his hand. He does have a few “bad” habits. He likes to throw toys. I mean random, out-of-the-blue, for no reason at all! He also like to open, shut, touch, feel, click, move, shake, push, pull EVERYTHING! I KNOW this is just curiosity but let’s be honest….it keeps us on our toes! He has started to repeat many words we say to him. He is just repeating and not using them on his yet! I am sure in time, when he gets around two certain four year old girls, he will start to talk for survival!!

Pray for our “Free Day” tomorrow. Nanchang just is not the type of city that you can stroll down to the local park and play outside for a while! Maybe we will find something to do outside of the four walls of this hotel.

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Mini-Grace does McDonalds……Yuck…McDonald’s again!

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Check out the OREOS….Double flavors in the middle? Have you seen these in the States?

Just hangin’ out with my Daddy!

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He’s a Huber! A San Diego Charger fan ALREADY!(****NOTE: These pictures are for Daddy,  Mac and Uncle Tom!!!)

 

“You are my God, and I will praise you;   you are my God, and I will exalt you.

 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;  his love endures forever.”

Psalm 118:28, 29

 





Day 5- Providential Paperwork/ Walmart!

27 05 2013

Today started early with breakfast and then off to do the paperwork required in his Province , Jiangxi. We had to go to three different offices and sign our names with thumb print over our signatures at least 10 times. Then we had a family picture. We were handed our adoption decree for about 10 minutes and our guide noticed a mistake. I had checked the document twice but the mistake was in Chinese so I would have never caught it. They had him listed as a girl. Needless to say that had to be fixed. We are still waiting on the new adoption decree. After paying fees that have doubled since our last visit in 2011, we were finally free of paperwork until we arrive in Guangzhou.

Most people are aware that driving in China is an experience! There are traffic lights and they do abide by them for the most part but there are no such things as lanes or kindness while driving. It’s every man for himself! This being our third trip, one would think that I would have been ready for the horn blowing, brake slamming, almost crashing ride. NOT SO MUCH! This driver is out of control! He came just inches from hitting a scooter! I honestly wanted to scream. But I am the only one in the car that seems stressed! Everyone else is along for the ride…..while I have lost years off my life!

We made our first journey to Wal-Mart tonight. It was a two-hour trip. One hour of walking. Levi did great! He has experienced too many firsts today to even try to mention! But let me tell you…he’s taking it all in. He did start repeating some English words today. His sweet little voice is so raspy. We did make many purchases just mostly went to get out of hotel room and people watch.

Here are a few pictures from our day! We are seeing more and more smiles each day. Although he did tell the girls that brought him here from the orphanage that he did not want to go with us. (But only because they asked him…he did not say that on his own:)

 

 

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Psalm 68:5-6 –

Father to the fatherless, defender of widows-
this is God, whose dwelling is holy.
God places the lonely in families;
he sets the prisoners free and gives them joy.
But he makes the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land





Day 4- Levi’s Forever Family Day

26 05 2013

I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him.
I Samuel 1:27

What an amazing day! It has been filled with so much emotion and excitement. I know you all just want to hear about Levi so I will not bore you with our travels!

We were told the he would be brought to our room at 4:00 but at 3:15 the doorbell rang and there stood the most precious face! He was obviously very shy but had been told what to expect. He came into the room and very hesitantly began to look at the toys we had set out for him. He watched every move I made. It wasn’t long before he even began to imitate the actions I was making with his toys. (SO VERY ADORABLE) Then the two ladies that brought him talked to him in Mandarin. I have no clue what they told him but you could tell they were giving him the final goodbyes. They both kissed him and walked out of the room. He did not cry but I could tell he was trying to be brave!

We went to dinner and played in the room for the remainder of the day. He even let us give him a bath. It was so funny to watch him hold plank with his legs out in front of him for 5 plus minutes in a row. He just laughed and laughed. He has such a jovial personality! After getting him out of the bath, we put some baby magic lotion on and comfy PJ’s! Then he was 100% Huber! You have to know that all my babies require Baby Magic:)

We have learned so many new things about him in the last few hours:

He is kind and curious.

He loves to play with matchbook cars.

He is very ticklish!

Bath time made him smile.

He just lays down, closes his eyes and goes to sleep.

His first experiences with umbrellas, French fries and a Western style toilet all happened today!

He is painfully thin.

I am not sure why we are always surprised when God gives us yet another blessing but ONCE again we are standing in awe of God amazing plan! This happy little boy has a family. We will always be his family…forever and always and no matter what! We wait with anticipation to introducing you to our son!! He’s amazing!

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“Your busy day is at an end
It’s time to go asleep again
Before your dreams take you away
Hear me when I say

      You are mine, I will never leave you
              I will see you through the night and be here in the morning
                 Close your eyes and have a good time dreaming
                    Knowing you will never be alone because you are mine.”

-Go Fish / You are mine





Day 2- Touring Shanghai

24 05 2013

Can you believe it? We slept the entire night! We must have been exhausted. In the past, our normal wake up time is about 3am. However, today we did not even move until 6am. We spent the first half hour seeing our children on Skype. They all tried to make their way to the camera and ALL wanted a front row seat. Our Hannah Li was so happy and her smile beamed from ear to ear…..as long as she was front and center of the camera! We headed to breakfast in the hotel. We ate eggs and toast. It was good and plenty to sustain us. I tried the steamed tomatoes too.(Not thinking I will go there again tomorrow.)

Our guide then took us to the Shanghai Museum. We spent two hours reading and observing the history of Chinese furniture, coins, calligraphy, jade, ceramics and clothing. It was very interesting and I honestly have NEVER seen that many coins in one location. The security was tight and they obviously treasure all the artifacts! After the museum, we went to the French Concession area of Shanghai. It was very modern and almost felt like home with a Starbuck’s and shopping on every corner. This area is home to the Memorial site of the First National Congress of the Communist Party of Chin@. We were able to walk through the memorial and our guide was very helpful in helping us understand the “politics” of this area.

It was lunch time and our guide dropped us off…literally…at a local fast food restaurant named Yoshinoya. It was an experience. I had veggies and rice and Doug….had….chicken, beef and rice. It looked disgusting!!

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The Tianhou-Silk market was next. This was a set up from the very beginning. It was a demonstration on the life cycle of the silk worm. The we were led to slaughter….I mean led into a room with beautiful silk pillows, comforters, blankets, shams. They were breath taking and so there we stood just Doug and I with at least 7 people waiting to help us spend money. It was uncomfortable. We loved it all but were not prepared to try and bring home a new bedding set. HAHA!! If you know us, you would know that we are always pushing the weight limits on our suitcases. So, this was just not a good choice. We did manage to get out of there alive and only buying two pillows. YES, they are shrink wrapped. It honestly was amazing.

Our guide then told us the day was over. It was 1:00pm. She could tell we were disappointed and so she offered to let us go to the ERA Intersection of time/ Shanghai Circus/ Acrobat show. We accepted her offer and went to have a small rest before our 6:30pm departure.

The show was a lot like Traces in the USA but add seven motorcycles in a steel caged ball…all at the same time. It was incredible. We were not allowed to take pictures. Sorry!

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Our guide lead us back to the hotel and then we just went out exploring the VERY active night life of Shanghai. As you can tell from the pictures…it was a taste of home. We found Nike and Apple store for Mac! We wished you were here with us to see that! Then we even found our first McDonalds. We really thought of you then son! Emma Grace, Can you find Mini-Grace in the pictures?

It was a very busy day. Only one more full day before we fly to Nanchang. Love to all! ( Can you tell I am the photographer? Not one picture of me today…will try to do better tomorrow!)

 

“We are settling for a Christianity that revolves around catering to ourselves when the central

message of Christianity is actually about abandoning ourselves.”

David Platt, Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream