James 1:27 " Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. "

Friday, January 24, 2014

Last Days in Guangzhou

Our last few days in Guangzhou were pretty calm and we really didn't do a whole lot.  On Sunday we went to the wholesale jewelry market and back to Shamian Island for some more shopping.  Then on Monday, January 13th we had our Consulate appointment to obtain Avery's visa for entry into the US.  On Tuesday afternoon we loaded up into a van and started our journey home.  We traveled by van into Hong Kong where we spent the night and headed to the airport the next day.  On Wednesday we began our 26 hour trek home.  We arrived home to Dexter around midnight on the 15th.  We were so happy to be home.  Everyone slept pretty well that first night home.

We have been staying pretty close to home the past week.  We made it to church on Sunday and Avery had her first doctor's appointment on Wednesday, complete with shots!  The shots made her feel pretty icky for the past day or so, but I believe she is on the mend now.  Here are some pics of our last days in Guangzhou.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Safari Park

Today we went to the Safari Park. It was really neat, but Carsen didn't really care for it. We rode a train through an area that had white tigers, elephants, lions, bears, camels, giraffes and many other animals. The were really close up. Carsen sort of enjoyed looking at the animals, when he wasn't covering his nose from the animal smell. He did the same thing at the fair, but I thought it was just a fluke then, but nope he has a sensitive nose! He got scared in some of the dark tunnels and stuff so we didn't get to see the pandas, but what we did see was really neat.

Carsen covering his nose from the smell.

Official Adoption Day

On Tuesday, January 7th we returned to the Civil Affairs office to make Avery's adoption official. We had to promise to them that we would take care of her, provide for her needs and never abandon her. We signed a bunch of papers and that was it, she is officially Avery Gracyn Jones.

The past several days we have mostly just been hanging out and getting to know our new daughter and letting her get to know us. We went to the Guangdong medical clinic to have her medical examination done for her visa to the US. She had to have a blood draw for a TB test and this brought on the tears.

She is opening up to us more and we are seeing more of her true personality. She seems to be quite stubborn, used to getting her way and has not been told not much. She likes to latch on a an object and carry it around with her, but when its time to leave or someone else needs that object she does not want to give it up.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Avery Day!

Our guide picked us up from our hotel around 2pm to head to the Guangdong Civil Affairs office. When we got there our guide went to check in and Jamie looked over to another room and said I think I saw her. She had already arrived and as soon as our guide took care of a couple of things they brought her out to us. She didn't cry our act scared. She went to us and started playing with some of the toys we brought. We sat down by my mom and Carsen and she saw the ipad Carsen had. She immediately tried to "help" him with the ipad. We signed some papers, talked to the lady from her orphanage, and took some pictures and we were on our way. Next stop was the Carrefour for needed supplies of diapers, formula, water and snacks for the kids. Then back to the hotel.

She is very curious...looked out the window while riding through the city, walks around the hotel room checking everything out and when food comes out she comes right over and will try anything. She is eating and drinking good for us. She has not had a lot of variety of food, but so far she has liked pretty much everything and is willing to try anything. We have gotten a few smiles and giggles, but you can tell she is still on guard. She went to sleep around 8:30 by herself and is still sleeping now. Today we are going back to the Civil Affairs office to finalize the paperwork.

Saturday, January 4, 2014


We made it to Beijing Thursday evening late after an almost 4 hour delay leaving Chicago. On Friday we went to Tiannamen Square and the Forbidden City. Today we went to the Great Wall. We have enjoyed our time in Beijing, but we are ready to move on with the next part of the trip. Tomorrow we leave Beijing and head to Guangzhou where we will be for the rest of the trip. We will meet Avery Monday afternoon.

Carsen is doing pretty well except his body is not accepting the time change very quickly. He was up at 2am on Friday and at 1am on Saturday and we finally got him back to sleep around 3 and then he slept to a normal time of 7.

The view of the plane getting ready to leave Chicago, it snowed all day.

Carsen watching the plane in Paducah

Carsen loved the Great Wall he would have climbed to the top if someone would have helped him. He loved to lean over the edge and look around.

The whole gang at the Great Wall.