Monday, August 15, 2016

Coming Home

Well we survived one week at home, more about that later.  We are so thankful to be home.  The trip home was not fun but it had to be done so we just did it.  We got up at 5 am to get a 6 am breakfast and a 6:30 van to Hong Kong.   I must say that the van ride was much better than the train we took last time.  We hit our first immigration check point into Hong Kong at 8 am.  We got to the airport about 9 am, our flight was at 1:15.  We waited for the check in counter to open and got all checked in and headed for some food and to wait by our gate.  The Hong Kong Airport is BIG thank goodness for good signage in English! We found a play area near our gate and let the girls play a bit before our flight which contrary to the rest of the trip was running early and was scheduled to leave at 1255!  Woo Hoo!!  We got on the plane and even got someone to trade Jim seats so we could sit together. Then before take off the pilot announce that our 12 hour flight was actually 11 hours!  So far so good.  But then as you can imagine or maybe you can't and if you can't I suggest you keep it that way, we started feeling the pressure of 2 adults traveling on a 11 hour flight with 2 children.

I won't go too far into the UGLY of the trip but it was not something I really wish to repeat.  Hailey had never slept any where but in a crib and Chloe just really wanted to be home.  It was a turbulent ride with several time we were not allowed to get out of our seats and every time that happened Chloe needed to use the facilities. Every hour that went by was a milestone that we celebrated.    We made it to Seattle and it was the best feeling ever but to say we were all a hot smelly mess would be an understatement.  We literally stunk!  I forgot to pack an extra pair of pants for me and we had been peed on by a leak diaper, spit up on and were just hot and sweaty.  But other than pants we found the nearest bathroom after customs and changed.  We then had to go back through security and another passport check.  I had to take off my shoes...IT WAS NOT A GOOD THING!!  But somehow no one passed out or threw up, I count that in the miracle.

We then had a long lay over in Seattle but we used to time to eat, play in the play room, and just relax not on a plane. We caught our plane to Yakima which was the roughest flight I had ever been on and Chloe slept through it all.  It was be the best feeling ever to land in Yakima.

My parents decided to pick us up at the airport and I am so happy they did.  It was a very long day and we were really tired.  Chloe woke up pretty quick when she discovered that her Banana and Poppy Seed were there.  She ran to my Mom and Dad, she really missed them, 15 days was too long for her 6 year old heart to stay away from the people and places she loves.

We then made a quick stop at Costco for some comfort food and milk so Chloe could have her precious hot milk.  We then made it home and after that I have to say that my memory starts to fade a little.  I guess that is what being awake for over 30 hours does to my poor brain but we survived the trip home and being home is a huge part of really feeling like a family.  

Friday, December 4, 2015

Some Pictures from Our Last Days in China

 We didn't do too much the last few days in China.  We did visit the memorial to Sun Yat Sen and the Temple of Six Banyan Trees.  The Memorial was a large auditorium...not much to look at, really.

The Temple happened to be under least there were some monks to look at.

 Chloe really liked having noodles for breakfast...see that smile?

 Our trip began at 6:30am, when we got in a van to drive to Hong Kong.  At 9:15AM we were in the airport in Hong Kong.  We took off at noon, and arrived in Seattle just midnight China time, we made it through customs at Midnight (9AM Seattle ).  Then we needed to wait around until 3:40PM Seattle time, that's almost 8AM China time.  We made it to Yakima and to Costco for milk and a few easy dinners.  By the time we get home and everyone got showered and into bed we'd been up nearly 30 hours.

 Hailey hanging out in the window in Hong Kong Airport.

 This is how our stuff looked at the gate in Seattle...Hailey is on the seat between Cora and Chloe.

What a day!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015


 We have always, as a family, wanted to see pandas.  Finally, we have. (Jim here)

Yesterday we went to the Guangzhou Safari Park.  We went with a couple families.  Below is one of the new additions to one of those families.  He kept pointing out trucks and cool things he was interested in.  He and I had some fun pointing things out and teasing each other.

 Chloe did well.  She enjoyed the animals and a little extra time with whichever parent she wanted.

 We saw a startling variety and number of animals.  There were at least six Rhinos.

 I was surprised to find Dinosaurs...didn't realize genetic engineering had come so far.

 This Zoo was different from others I have been to in that some of the animals were allowed some interaction with the people.  There were some adolescent orangutans playing above the crown, and some black monkeys I don't remember the name for and am too lazy to look up.

 Below is our friend Jill, she and Benjamin accompanied us around the rather large park.  Four hours is NOT enough to do it justice.

 The park had at least 28 tigers by my count, and that's not counting any other tigers we just didn't see.  The white tigers put on a show every half hour...where they jumped for chicken.  It was impressive, they are such large cats, and yet pretty bouncy.

 Another thing was the up-close and personal Giraffe experience.  You could buy a sprig of leaves and feed the giraffes...and by my count there had to be about 15 to 20 giraffes at the park.

 Benjamin got in on the act, too!

 Finally, we got to see the pandas!

 If an animal couldd be MORE at ease with their place in life, I'm not certain it exists.,

 The pandas were awesome.  They were very expressive.  Something about their eyes just said so much.  They seem like playful beasts, and I kinda want one for a pet!

It was a long day, particularly for the girls.  Hailey was beat!  And she didn't walk a bit.