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Friday, December 28, 2012

The really big day

Whew, this was one busy day -- Tian’an Men Square, the Forbidden City, a hutong tour, a visit to the CCCWA (formerly CCAA), and a Christmas party (which we practically sleepwalked through).

We thought we were totally prepared for the cold, but the second we stepped off that bus in Tian’an Men Square the artic blast had everyone on the tour scrambling for any extra clothing stashed in pockets and backpacks. Whooeee, that was some serious cold. A vendor came up to our family with kid-sized panda masks and we couldn’t buy them fast enough. So every picture you see of Ro and Ree has them toasty warm with their faces covered by pandas.


See? Funny and very happy little pandas (Ree in blue hat, Ro in purple one):DSC_6137LRs

Never realized it before, but those simple white coats stand out like beacons in bustling crowds. Very handy:

Our family portrait on the way to the restroom. Hee:

What exactly has to happen for a toilet to receive the coveted 4-star rating?:

Heading up the stairs to the Forbidden City:

I could stare at the architecture and details all day:

After the Forbidden City, we went on a hutong tour, which was AWESOME. Loved seeing that captivating town (want to get back some day and really spend some time there), riding in the rickshaw, and having lunch in a local lady’s bedroom:

Our gracious hostess (who said it was fine to take a picture):

The kiddos are all having a good time together. They’re cute to see. The tour group has three busses, grouped by age. We’re on the bus with the “littles”:

Everything is so colorful here:

This is the local bike repair shop. Seriously. See the pumps and extra parts?:

Ok, way too many pictures for one post, I edited it down as much as possible and still haven’t even said anything about our fabulous afternoon visit to the CCCWA. That merits its own post, so I’m going to have to call this one over and done and tell the rest of the story tomorrow.


  1. What a day!! Love seeing your pics of Tian'an Men Square and The Forbidden City. It makes me want to watch 'The Last Emperor' again. Such a massive, beautiful, unbelievable place! We toured it in a snow storm but remember the cold well. I too scrambled for a vendor the moment we stepped off the bus. Hannah was toasty warm and slept in the carrier the entire visit but mommy needed extra clothes. Love the panda hats! So cute!!

    How wonderful that you were able to go on a Hutong tour! loved this too! Your trip is brining back so many wonderful memories!

    Cannot wait to hear about your trip to the CCCAA!! Sweet dreams friend....


  2. I'm with Catherine...so many wonderful memoirs! We, too, loved our hutong tour and meal. In fact, I think it was the best meal we had in Beijing. We were in Beijing for three days before meeting Sophie. I can't wait to take her back some day and visit these wonderful places again. But, let's see...I now know I don't want to go in the winter! We were there in late May/early June and the heat was stifling. Actually, our travel group has talked about mid-late April tour, as the kids in MA and NH get one week spring breaks then on consecutive weeks, so each kid would then only miss one week of school. We'll see. But it makes me want to start planning!!! Great photos!

  3. It's so funny to see you all bundled up in places we were so hot!

    Will the girls get to visit their orphanage?

  4. It is like I am there with you on this trip. Thank you so much for sharing all of it. If you are willing, I'd love it if you would share with me the 2 pictures of the gates. They are inspiration for some quilts that I'd like to make and having the jpeg of the photos would greatly help. Thank bunches!