Guangzhou Shopping Day (July 3)

Last night Daniel reached a new milestone ~ his first bath as part of the M family.  The tubs here at the Garden are pretty big, but we figured that four may be a bit intimidating, so Mom took the girls to her room to bathe them.  It did take a little coaxing, but Zhenyu finally decided that he'd give the small water a shot with his brother.  Pretty sure that he decided he liked it…

all smiles at bathtime
Oh, in total randomness ~ I totally forgot something that Alfred told us Friday on our way to the airport.  Ian handed him a paper with all our kids' Chinese names and asked for their meanings.  The other three were confirmed as what we thought they were.  And while both Daniel and Kylie share a common base character (Zhen), hers is a noun that means something like jewelry where his is a verb that means "to shake."  And Yu means "the universe."  So Alfred said that whoever chose Daniel's name gave him a very strong name, essentially it means, "he who shakes the universe."  Oh dear!  :)

Okay, so last night.  While Ian got the big kids settled he and I had some bonding time over stickers.  One sheet that he wanted to put in his notebook was hard to get of the sheet and so he'd point to one for me to peel and then he'd stick it on, look up at me, smile and then clap his little hands while whispering "yay."  It was so sweet!  When we did lay down, he fought sleep for quite some time despite being really tired.  Eventually he did sleep for an extended period of time, but around dawn he started thrashing for a while.  But this morning he woke up super snuggly, so we'll celebrate progress.

Today was a pretty low key day.  We were heading shopping at a big plaza, so I dressed my kids in their sibling shirts to make it easier to spot them in a crowd.  

sibling shirt day!
Kylie has decided that Rebecca is really here to assist our family in child control and she happily helps lead the way anytime we are all in one big group.  

Kylie proudly told me that Rebecca asked if she wanted to be her assistant.
While I have plenty of jade jewelry, I did want to replace my pearl necklace from last year that had two pink and one black pearl.  Ian bought me a really pretty one with two pink and two black to represent all four of my kiddos.

Several other moms getting pearl necklaces.
It took a little while for them to be strung, so my big kids hung out with some of the other families while we waited.  

Talking to Carter and his dad.
On this trip we have three first time parents and it has been fun thinking back to our trip for Kylie.

Offering encouragement to a new mom.  And Daniel actually was content to stay in the Ergo the entire day.  
While there we also decided to pick up a few DVDs of the ever popular Chinese cartoon The Pleasant Goat and the Big Big Wolf.  While we were in there Daniel was taking a sip out of the bottle of orange juice Ian had bought for us to share and I don't know exactly how it happened, but first the bottle started to tip down, which poured about a cups worth of pulpy orange juice in between he and myself and then in surprise he jerked it back up and poured about another cup of it all over his face.  While we were standing on the black marble floor of the DVD store.  Wish I had gotten the camera out to take a picture of his little surprised, pulp covered face.  

We decided to head out into the plaza behind the shopping mall for lunch.  With our kids being as tired as they were, and time being somewhat limited, we followed the masses into a two story McD's for a quick bite.  It was crazy busy and finding a seat proved to be a challenge.  With limited seats, Daniel continued to stay in the carrier, so now parts of his lunch and the sprite the two of us shared joined the orange juice down the front of me.

the big kids enjoying a familiar lunch.
The plaza below.
When all the shopping was done we came back to the hotel and met up with Adam and Lindsay for a little while before they headed back down to their city.  It was so good to see them!  

Our family with one darling little extra.

Our two families just a bit bigger than the last time we saw them.
Then it was nap time and while it took a little while for Zhenyu to calm down, he did take a long nap, the first half of it snuggled against me on the couch.  (I may have caught a few winks beside him).  Ian and Mom took the girls to the pool while I stayed here with the snoozers.  Kylie and Darcy came back full of giggles so I do hope that we all get to make it to the pool before we head home.  

We ended the evening with a group dinner at the Malaysian restaurant across the street from our hotel.  This time it was nice because they allowed each family to order for themselves and as we had been there before, we knew what we liked.  We had mostly veggies and noodles and our family was pretty content and we got to chat with one of the new families (who brought along her parents and his mom).

Even though Ian and the girls had showers when they got back from the pool, Guangzhou is like a sauna right now and everyone was wet after our ten minute walk back.  So mom took the girls to her room for bathtime (which they think is pretty special) and the boys got their bath after I had a shower.  Not that I needed one to get the street funk and all the food Daniel spilled on me throughout the day off or anything.  Daniel and I had another sticker bonding time and he almost went to bed without fussing, but we started to go for two nights in a row with no shoes.   But he needed the comfort those little worn out sandals provide, so I went searching in the dark for them.  And his bulldozer.  

Once he had the shoes and his beloved bulldozer and his thermos full of water he finally got still and quiet.  I had turned on our nightlight and looked him in the eyes and told him in Mandarin that he was a good boy and that I loved him.  He didn't break eye contact with me, but he also didn't crack a smile in the least.  I do look forward to the day that those words bring a smile and comfort to his little hurting heart.  I know it is coming...

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