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Saturday, May 3, 2014

Day 4 of the trip: Jade Shop, Great Wall, and the Summer Palace

Fine Jade Factory and Shop in the morning
Saturday, May 3, 2014
Today was our last sightseeing day in the Beijing area. We just love the rich history and culture and people! We especially appreciate our tour guide, Dennis. He is so fantastic with children, has such a great knowledge of China, and his favorite author is Tim Keller! How can you go wrong? We started the day at the Jade Factory and Shop, with very high quality, fine jade as well as breathtaking framed silk embroidery. 

 After pondering the options, we carefully selected a soft white ancient jade and sterling pendant to purchase as a meaningful gift for our Kate. It's from a piece of fine jade that is hundreds of thousands years old. I am going to wear it on Gotcha Day and Adoption Day and we will present it to Katie when she is older. It is a circle, in China: symbolizing both the Moon Festival: the re-unification of family, and in the U.S., the circle symbolizes eternity, an unending commitment. We will love her forever. She was meant to be a part of our family since before she was born... As our song for her goes, 'we have loved you for a thousand years, and we'll love you for a thousand more!' (Perri).

Cara with our driver who totally adores her, Mr. Geng, in front of a silk embroidered panel.

The Great Wall of China in the late morning 
Truly a landmark, thousands of miles long, but we went to a popular portion near Beijing. We all climbed a bit but the only Doug and Dennis climbed up the steepest and furthest parts. Cara and I waited for them and were eventually mobbed by family photo opps. :)

It was already there. YES, He does! :)

Here's the Blond Celebrity Phenomenon crowd... and I'm busy getting more TicTacs out for the children. 

We love China!

The Emperor's Summer Palace and Gardens in the Afternoon
What a gorgeous place, Dennis led us on a tour of the Emperor's gardens from the 17th century and we took a brief dragon boat cruise. Cara had just woke from a nap (she had been up since 2 am) and only wanted to be held.

Okay, I'm off to take my baby to swimming in the hotel pool finally as promised and grab some dinner before we leave in the morning for Katie's province. The high speed train ride with all our luggage may prove logistically challenging. We will REALLY miss Beijing and Dennis: I really thought today: I truly respect and appreciate China! I'm so grateful for the chance to experience her heritage and nation's history. Next week though, we get to experience HER China: Handan. A third of my heart is in Handan and will be meeting me in Shijiazhuang in 39 1/2 hours (but who's counting?!?) ;) 

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