This will be my last post from China. It is hard to believe the day has finally arrived. In a few hours (5:45am) we will head downstairs and check out of our 4th hotel since we arrived 23 days ago. The packing is done, except for a few last minute things, and the girls are already in bed.
Today was spent in the room getting everything organized and packing those suitcases to the brim. We'd packed three of our checked bags already, and part of our carry-on luggage when we realized that we could not find the room key and our cash. We searched this room over. Digging through the trash, crawling around looking under beds- all the fun stuff. We had taken some of our trash out already to the cleaning crew and were afraid Meimei might have thrown it away. I chased down the cleaning cart and tried to explain to the ladies that I wanted to dig in the trash. Obviously, they were pretty sure I'd lost my mind. In my defense, it is quite difficult to use hand motions to explain how a 6 year old who can't keep her hands off ANYTHING might have thrown something important away. Finally they told me to wait a minute and they tracked down the guy who took our trash. After pawing through every inch of the trash bag, there was still no card and cash. By now they were thinking I was trying to say that the guy stole it and they want to call a manager to come to our room. I'm reassuring them that in no way did we think that he took it. About that time Meimei pops her head out the door, and I point to her to let them know we think she is the guilty subject. A minute later Virgil comes out of the room, victoriously holding up the missing articles. Evidently little miss sticky fingers saw us packing and decided to help. She had shoved both the card and cash under everything else in one of the suitcases. I'm still amazed that he found it. When I finally made the cleaning crew understand, we all had a good laugh. The moral of this story is that you must hide anything of value while Meimei is around. If you don't she just might help you 'hide' it somewhere.
Our time here has gone very well. No melt-downs, no tantrums, and the girls all stayed healthy. Each city had many people who showed us kindness. We were blessed with wonderful guides, who were very patient with the girls. The girls are bonding with each other, and we have been able to talk to our girls back home almost everyday of the trip. We are so thankful for all those at home who have loved on the girls. Emily, my mom and David have taken great care of them and it was a blessing that they came and stayed at our house so the girls could keep some semblance of normalcy. Food has been brought to the house, Xiaoyun taken to school each day, the blogs posted for us, our grass mowed, and many phone calls to check on the kids from various people. It seems like some aunts and uncles might have spoiled them while we were gone. They've been taken to dinner, to a play in Louisville, to the toy store, and probably much more we know nothing about. Most of all, we have had so many prayers prayed on our behalf. What a blessing you have all been to us!! We are so thankful for all the encouragement and support- not just while we've been in China- but also in the months leading up to it. We know our girls will be welcomed with open arms, and that there are many who are waiting to love on them. We cannot wait to introduce you all to two incredible little girls!!
BTW- We will have 36 hours of traveling (from hotel to Louisville), to include a 6 hour layover in Shanghai, three separate flights, security checks at least three times, and immigration to clear in Detroit. Please continue to pray!!!