Today we got our paperwork completed for Amanda! According to the Chinese government, both Hope and Amanda are ours!!
This in addition to the fact that TODAY IS HOPE'S 14TH BIRTHDAY!! Happy birthday, Hope!!!
It was a difficult morning for the girls, though. When I told Hope that we needed to go again, she told me "no". When I told her to put her shoes on, we really needed to leave, she started asking questions of where and why. I don't think she trusted my answers, but at least she was complacent and came along. Granted, Hope is normally quiet, but she crawled into a shell I hadn't seen since we got her. Even Amanda was more subdued.
When we arrived at the same place we got Min Zhi from the day before, I could almost guess what the girls were thinking. We were ushered into a waiting room and left alone. In the room were some large plastic toys, one of which was a huge ball. Dave and I started kicking the ball to the girls while sitting on couches. Smiles emerged, followed by laughter when Dave and I were falling off the couches and making wayward kicks...by the time we were called out, our girls were more relaxed. Hope didn't want to be anywhere near us in the room we were questioned about our intentions, but I had her sit on my lap anyway. She heard the questions and answers and saw the exchange of RMB. Not what I would have chose, but all of a sudden it seemed to click...we weren't returning her/them, we were making it real. When it was time to leave, Amanda didn't cry at all, even when her ayi gave her a hug. instead, Amanda almost flew to Dave's side and grabbed his hand. Hope even took my hand--the first time she initiated!!!
After all of this, we went to lunch by the hotel again. We had Hope choose the restaurant and order; partially because we wanted her to assume responsibility but mostly because none of the restaurants have ANY English or ANY pinyin and very few photos of what the food is supposed to look like! We saw for the first time that Min Zhi will eat until the food is gone--as soon as we realized this, we took her food away because she had already eaten more than Dave. She may not be hoarding right now, but she definitely doesn't know to stop.
We stopped at Wal-Mart again, this time to buy some rubber flip flops. The big, cushy slippers I purchased for the girls yesterday found their way into the shower, and it's questionable whether they will dry any time soon. We also stopped at a DVD store and got the girls their choice of movies and music. It was nice, as Hope actually ASKED for some music!
This is a big change, even since this morning. I had to use her birthday as "leverage" to get her to wear her new clothes. I also used it to get her to agree to let me paint her nails. She only agreed to sparkly clear polish only on her pinky nails and only AFTER I painted Dave's big toe! What a guy!
Anyway, we now need to wake our new Chinese princesses. They both fell asleep while waiting for me to finish this post. We plan on introducing them to pizza tonight, followed by a scoop of ice cream. American eating at its finest!
All my best,