Leaving on a jet plane…. arriving in China!

Hi pals. I’m typing this from our airplane… isn’t technology a marvel? But I am tying on a teeny tiny tablet keyboard, so I’m having to retype every word, basically, since I’m also in a cramped airplane seat, so have tiny t-rex arm syndrome. :).

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I am trying to keep a good record of this trip because I’m sure, like most big events, this will eventually fade. So here’s how things have gone.

We have been packing for DAYS. DAYS. And by Monday night, we had 99% of our stuff packed and ready to go, and then the rest of Tuesday was just chucking more stuff in that we “might” need. I’m sure we brought far more then we needed, but we ended up with two 46 lb suitcases, so I’m quite pleased with that. Roughing it isn’t really my “thing” so I’m pretty proud of our “light” packing.

Emotionally, the days leading up to leaving were rough. I’m sure I looked frazzled, and I certainly felt that way. I was worried about Eden, I was worried about the trip, etc, etc, etc. I mean, just, all the worries. And I told myself that I would worry right up until we walked into that airport, and then I was done. I had done as much as I could, and that would have to be enough. As much packing, as much prepping Eden, as much aimless worrying, and at some point I just needed to relinquish it. I was especially worried about an emotional airport scene with Eden, on both our ends. I could just see her having to be dragged away, and me sobbing through security. Ugh. But a few days ago, I read a blog post from a fellow adoptive mom who said that she has encouraged her kids to yell and scream and jump as they were pulling out of the driveway, and on the way up, I told Eden that I wanted her to make as much noise as possible while we were walking away and make everyone stare. It worked really well and we got good hugs and goodbyes and then she screamed us into the airport. I am so glad that I read about that tactic, I think it saved us a lot of the sads.

Once we got to the airport, we got boarding passes, checked our baggage and got through security in record time, and had plenty of time to go eat, so we walked down to Chik–fil-a, and had a nice American meal of fried chicken and fries. Our flight was delayed 40 minutes, so we got to chill for a little while, chat with friends, etc. It was a huge help for my fragile emotions to read all the notes and texts from the people we love. You guys helped so much.

So we boarded, got our seats, and off we went. We found out that for some reason, our flight would be shorter then usual by about an hour, which is why we delayed our take off. Apparently Beijing only lets you land within 30 minutes of your planned time, so we had to adjust for that. We don’t really care why, just WAHOO shorter flight.

So far we’ve had dinner (thai beef!) and drinks and have watched two episodes of The Newsroom. We’re still too wired to sleep much, but I’m sure we’ll get there. Tylenol PM is our friend. There is a guy sitting across from me who is having some PHELM ISSUES, so ear plugs are also my friend.  Update:  Josh slept two hours, me, about 20 minutes.  We are not good airplane sleepers.

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One super cool thing that’s happened is we are sitting in a row of four seats, and the other couple in our row is also adopting a 2 year old little girl. So it’s been fun talking with them and comparing notes.

Anyway. That’s the beginning of our trip. Sorry for the stream of consciousness blogging. Not my best effort, but all I can manage for now. Thanks again for following along and for loving us well. Couldn’t do it without you!

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Okay, now we’re on our room and we’ve actually slept, so maybe I can be coherent. We landed yesterday and were met by our guide, and waiting on another family who were also arriving around the same time. One thing that has been nice is this process is being able to connect with other families who we’ll be traveling with via Facebook, so we knew who we were meeting and there were hugs and much rejoicing!

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We took a mini bus to our hotel from the airport and got settled in our room. By then the lack of sleep and long day were catching up with us, but I was hungry, so we walked to a noodle shop that was right next door. We ordered a chicken dish and a beef and noodles dish. I’m not sure that either of them was a huge hit, but they were pretty good filled our bellies and that was enough. Then we came back and Josh was out like a light. I don’t know what it was, but I was WIRED and not quite ready to sleep, so I video called my parents and Eden and talked to them and then finally, finally, the crash happened. We both slept okay, but woke up at about 3:45 wide awake and ready to start the day. I’m sure we’ll pay for that later.

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Today we’re going to see Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, then we’re going to see the old streets of Beijing via rickshaw, and have dinner with a local family in their home. It should be QUITE A DAY!

Tomorrow is the Great Wall and then the day after we take the train to Zhengzhou and the wait to meet Jia is hours, not days. I am loving being here, and so glad we got to come a few days early and see Beijing, but I think I am just anxious to get to Jia and get started. But I am not wanting to squander our last few kid free days for a loooooooong time, so I’m soaking it in. What a ride!