When we finally got her to open her eyes, she didn't look surprised or scared to see us. I was really worried she would wake up upset. But she was very happy for me to pick her up and get things going. She very much liked getting dressed up and admiring her bow in the mirror.
While she was finishing her bottle, we Skyped back home. We wanted to introduce Arella to this Zoe character we've been talking about her whole life, but at the same time we were nervous how she would handle it. Her reaction... she kissed Zoe on the screen! Zoe just stared and stared and Arella was actually somewhat excited! We'll see if that keeps up once we're home...
A final trip back to the Civil Affairs office this morning made the adoption official in her province. We'll take all the paperwork to the US Consulate in Guangzhou next week to finalize it on the US side. Here we are in front of the building.
Zoe was way more relaxed and happy this morning. Maybe she could feel our excitement. When we first walked in, the vice director of the orphanage was there. Zoe reached out for him and he looked to me to see if it was okay. I could tell from the day before he's pretty close to the kids, so of course I let him hold her. I was worried she wouldn't want to come back to me. But she only let him hold her for a minute then reached back for me! What booming joy coursed through me in that moment!!
We sat with the civil affairs official, and she asked us several questions. Like, the baby only has one ear; do you mind this? If you have no problems with this child, please sign this. Just such a funny process. Here we are making it super duper official by stamping our thumb prints over our signatures.
Zoe even got to be official with a little red right foot print.
And then guess what came next... I twirled her around in a circle and out came her first real smile. We didn't get the full thing on camera, but this is her happy, slightly smiley face.
So we all have a better perspective, the green is the Hunan province where Zoe is from, and I'm pointing to her city down on the southern tip.
And here is a map of China, and Amy, our awesome guide, is pointing to Changsha, where we currently are.
One last picture of the three of us in front of the office sign after we're officially a family!
All the excitement and happiness wore her out. She fell asleep in my lap on the way back to the hotel.
Such a sweet little thing she is and she's starting to open up and give smiles more. Neither one of us can believe how quickly she's adjusting. I almost ended the post here, but itty bit just woke up and we found out a little secret that gave us this!
I'm sure there will still be a few bumps ahead, but it's sure nice to see she's already taking to us. Must be all that praying...
Tomorrow is a fun day. Just a visit to the park and hanging out. Looking forward to it.