Seeing the pearls in the market was amazing. You will never see anything like it! Our guide was very knowledgeable and took us to only reputable dealers where we would get fair prices and "the real deal." No fakes here.
The day prior to this we also borrowed a stroller from the hotel we were staying in and discovered that Hannah really liked to ride in it. What a blessed relief for me! I was the only one she would allow to handle any of her care in China, she wanted to be on me at all times, and was also sleeping in our bed for bonding purposes. I was exhausted, the ergo was getting heavy, and her volatile moods were making it difficult to contain her in the ergo at all times. She was so happy to ride in the stroller, it got her physically off my body for a short stretch of time, AND Chris could push the stroller if we didn't make a big deal out of it (she wanted to know where I was at all times)! I cannot begin to tell you what a wonderful break this was. Our group outings with the stroller were welcome times for me to just simply get a break from the physical demands of being her primary caregiver throughout our time in China. Yes! Praise Jesus! She likes the stroller! I felt like a new woman. Seriously. You have no idea what this silly borrowed stroller did for my state of mind that last week of China. I wish we'd asked for one in Nanning!
Closing the deal on our pearl purchases. I did the shopping, Chris handled all the money. This American girl can only calculate US Dollars in her non-math brain. Chris was a Chinese Yuan genius. So thankful God paired us the way He did!
Bags of pearls? Yes, please!
As far as the eye could see! Seriously, it was a sight to behold.
Yay for the stroller! Seriously, YAY!!!!! Can I get an Amen or a cartwheel? Yippee, girlie likes the stroller!
After our shopping was complete at the pearl and jade market (no jade for me....I just didn't see anything I loved) we went to tour the Chen Family House. Honestly, this trip was happening very close to lunch and nap time and Hannah was getting restless. We were not there very long and I did not use the time wisely to learn anything about it. Ha! I have no clue why it was a big deal, why we went there, or what made the people there so special (aside from having lots of money). What a horrible tourist I am! Survival mode, y'all. The second week of China was total survival mode. We did, however, get a really awesome scroll of calligraphy with Hannah's Chinese name and American name on it, Gotcha Date, and information about the calligrapher. We plan to hang it in her room. While we did little to "tour" this spot, we did get some cute photos!
We were there while everyone was gearing up for Chinese New Year celebrations. I loved all the red lanterns and wanted to find some to bring home for our own celebrations. I struck out in a major way on this project! Maybe amazon or etsy can help me now that we are home.... Sad. I really wanted "authentic" decorations.
Chen Family Home. The carving on the outside was so ornate.
The calligrapher making Hannah's wall scroll.
Within the home.
The front entrance.
More about this amazing family in a future post. They were God's secret little nugget of blessing to us for our week of Guangzhou. Seriously. Probably would have gone off the deep end or still be hiding in a corner of our hotel room if not for breaks of sanity and "normalcy" with them each day. People say you are forever changed by those in your travel group. So true.
I spy with my little eye a.........SNACK CUP!
Snack cup security = relatively happy Hannah (as happy as she got in China) and relatively secure Mama. One day I thought I had forgotten the snacks. I kid you not! I panicked! Heart to the floor panic! Looked at Chris with tears starting to bubble over...."I think I forgot THE SNACKS!" His face sunk. "Seriously?!" "Yes! I don't remember putting them in the bag!" What was likely thirty seconds that felt like at least a half hour later, we discovered we had, indeed, packed the snacks. Crisis averted. PHEW!