Live...laugh...love Life with 4 kids 6 and under. Our trip to pick up Tonito in China is: mid-March 2008 through April 12. Our trips to pick up Ricky in Ethiopia are in June and August of 2010.
Thursday, April 3, 2008
DAY 9: "International Grand Bazaar" in Urumqi
Today was a very productive shopping day at the "International Grand Bazaar," a huge market in Urumqi where many different ethnic groups (including Han) sell handicrafts, antiques, jewelry, clothes, and more. In my mind, I was trying to imagine how we were going to handle this huge market with 2 very active three year olds (and no stroller), and keep an eye on the camera and money at the same time. To my surprise, it went very, very well!! We each were in charge of one child (what would we do if Maya were here!? I guess we would have had to have a double stroller!) and Toño took care of the money and I took care of the camera (which is why I am not in any pictures).
The first picture is outside the market; then Vivi is trying on the hat/veil we got her (and one for you too Maya!). Then below is Toño using his uber-intimidating Mexican bargaining tactics to buy some antique Chinese coins, and finally a group shot of the kids outside the market (only Drew and Lily are missing!). The back row is Stephanie, Brian, Vivi and Toñito; the front is Gillian Sha En and Luke Tian Bo.
We bought lots of souvenirs for Toñito, and our family, and could have spent many more hours exploring!! Originally I wanted to buy one present for every birthday he would have until he is 18, but now I might want to just give him everything now:). We'll see.
Here are some pictures from the market:
The first one is ice cream, then pomegranate juice, then dried fruit, more dried fruit, Uygur hats, and a watermelon stand. I should have taken more inside!!!!
After the market we came back to the hotel and laid the kids down for their first afternoon nap (Vivi's first in China and Toñito's first since we got him). This was a well-needed nap!!!! After 2.5 hours of sleeping they were in much better moods! The best part was the during their nap, Toño and I ordered food from the "Muslim Restaurant" in the hotel, and had a fantastic lunch of local Uygur food without any interruptions:). We ordered lamb shish-ka-bobs, this veggies dish, and then on the right is rice with lots of dried fruit, and then lamb dumplings.
We then took a taxi with Kim (Drew's mom) and found both Drew and Toñito's "finding place." It was emotional to visit the hospitals where they were left to be found by the loving people that took care of them until we could become a family.
We got back to the hotel and decided we should spend some time playing and running outside in the plaza. It was so fun!! We rented these large stuffed animals that drive around on wheels (sounds weird, kids love it), and they were crashing into each other and laughing hysterically (as was our audience). Then we found Stephanie, Brian, Gillian and Drew and they all ran crazy kicking around a soccer ball and bumping into onlookers. Toñito collided and fell down twice hard but he reached for a kiss from mama and then kept running. He is definitely the smallest in the group, but wants to be a big kids like everyone else.
After the plaza it was time for dinner (we now know he likes broccoli, corn, kidney beans, lamb dumplings, celery, and onions!) and then a long bath. This time the kids took hotel toothbrushes in the tub and scrubbed the plastic animals for almost an hour. I am not kidding- they love playing in the water!!! Toñito got his first massage by papi and LOVED it. He was so still and closing his eyes- it was a great way to calm him down after the ticklefest and before bed. He is such a good boy- he says xie xie if you give him anything, and is laughing most of the time. He is very easy to please, very smiley, always wants to laugh at something, and is just really cute!! Of course he is testing us now by hitting either Vivi or us and laughing. He doesn't hit hard, but he does it just to see the reaction (which is why we learned "boo ta"= no hitting). At first Vivi would just cry and come to us, but she needed to learn to stand up for herself. So after several role plays she now puts her hands up and says "No hitting! Be nice!" She actually loves when we act it out- she says "Mommy, you be Vivi and I'll be Toñito" and then she pretends to hit me and I have to say "Be nice." And then she wants us to reverse roles. This goes on for a while, and she laughs the whole time. So then we hear her say to him "Be nice!" and he just repeats it with his cute accent- "Be nice" and then they just keep repeating it and laughing. Aaaah, three year olds:). But then he also is showing much more affection and kisses me and Toño a lot on the cheek. Here are some cute pictures today in the market of Vivi and Toñito, and then him with his new souvenirs: