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January 5th, 2007, 07:18 AM
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m_westbro m_westbro is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Texas y'all!
Posts: 17,144
Hope y'all don't mind me sharing all this, but today is the 3 year anniversary of our Jaden's "Gotcha Day"! She was only 10 months old and a tiny little thing, but even then, we could see that our little cutie had quite the personality and was going to live up to the "spicy" reputation that babies from her province of Hunan are famous for. Here are a few pics of our little Spicy Peanut, and what I wrote in our journal about the day we met her.
Referral pic, our first glimpse of Guo Xiang Hui:

Gotcha moment with Dad, his first time to hold her:

Cutie in her first Tommy outfit, LOL!

Cheerio face:

Meeting big bro for the first time at the airport:


Journal Entry:
The Big Day, Monday, January 5, 2004

"Neither of us slept well last night, and we were both up very early. We had to have our bags outside the door at 7am, and be in the lobby to go to the airport by 9:15. Derek was so nervous that he couldn’t eat breakfast and he paced all around the lobby while we waited to leave. It reminded me of the day I had Jakob, he just physically could not be still. Some of our travelmates got tickled that he was so nervous because he’d been so cool and collected up to that point. The flight from Beijing to Changsha was about 2 hours long (seemed longer in those tiny Chinese airline seats), but a little nerve-wracking given how anxious we all were to get there and meet the babies. Shortly after we arrived, we had to go do paperwork then we headed back to our rooms to WAIT. The Hua Tian Hotel is 5-star and very beautiful, we have gorgeous white down comforters and pillows, and Jaden’s little crib even has a tiny down comforter of it’s own. The lobby is all decked out for the Chinese New Year, we’ll be sure and get pics of that later. Anyway, back to the good part! Tracy, our Holt guide, call at 4:55pm to say that the babies had arrived and that they would come by in 5-10 minutes. (insert pacing and nervously preparing cameras here, lol) At 5:05, the knock at the door finally came and I opened it. She looked totally calm and was so cute all dressed in a huge poofy yellow and orange outfit. The orphanage caretaker handed her to me (insert tears rolling down my cheeks here) and she just looked right up at me then started checking out the rest of the room. She was breathing really quickly, but she didn't cry or seem too scared of us. One of the first things I noticed about her was that she had so many teeth (7)! Vicki (our local guide) and the caretaker left us and let us have about 10 minutes alone with her. She looked back and forth at both of us and Derek videotaped that first few minutes (I can only imagine what was going through her mind at that point). I handed her to him and took a few pictures, and she wasn’t too thrilled with that so he gave her back to me. I tried to sit down on the bed with her, but she whimpered so I jumped right back up (I didn’t want to be the first one to make her cry, lol) and walked around the room talking to her. Vicki and the caretaker came back in and told us more about her and answered our questions. They said she had a slight cold and that she had a little diarrhea because they had just changed formula at the orphanage. She had a little bruise on her forehead where they had put an IV to give her fluids. These are some of the other things they told us about her: She like to watch TV, she eats and sleeps well, she likes to suck on her blanket to go to sleep (even though they tried to break the habit), and that on the bus on the way to the hotel, that she had said “baba”, which is Mandarin for Daddy, for the first time ever and they thought it was very strange that she would say it today (she’s a genius, I tell you!). ? They left and then we were on our own. We slowly started to take off her layers (there were 3!) and finally got down to her tiny little body. I put her in a purple 6-9 month size outfit with purple and white socks and a bib that said “I love my big brother”. All 20 of our newly formed families then met for dinner here in the hotel at 6:30. Jaden just sat quietly at first and looked around, she seemed to be just taking it all in. I made her a bowl of congee and steamed egg and she ate off the spoon like a pro. She ate 3 bowls full as a matter of fact and probably would’ve kept going if I’d let her. Then the spicy girl show began…she started smiling at me when I gave her kisses and got more and more animated the more we played. Everyone thought she was such a cutie and couldn’t believe how happy and smiley she was. Many of the babies, especially those who had come from foster care, were very upset and cried throughout dinner. I felt so bad for their new Mommies and Daddies, especially those who had just become parents for the first time. We came back to the room and tried to give her a bottle but she wouldn’t take it and we didn’t have much luck getting her to bed either. She faked us out by falling asleep at 9:30 but then was up at 10:15 ready to play! She didn’t go back to sleep until around 2:30am. She’s such a cute little stinker though, we didn’t mind too much. We are head over heels in love already and are so blessed to call this beautiful child our daughter!"

If you've made it this far, thanks for sharing in our special day! Adoption is an amazing journey, and I am so thankful to have been blessed with the experience of it. I wish all of you who are in process now (or in the future) the very best and want to say hang in there, your dreams can and will come true.
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