Left home at 5:15am, a little behind schedule, but our plane was late, so it didn't matter. Got through all checks okay. We checked 6 bags loaded with donations. I bag was 50lbs exactly, the other was 48lbs. The others were 40-some pounds. Good thing I took out the gigantic can of formula and put it in my carry-on!
We made it to Dallas about 20 minutes before the next plane was to leave, so Taylor and I literally ran to the next gate (got to take the cool am-trak deal too). They kindly waited for Nathan to arrive with our carry-ons (we had to valet-check them in Springfield). But, that plane ended up having technical difficulties, so we sat for about 45 minutes before leaving.
Made it to Miami okay with about an hour to spare, so we grabbed some sandwiches and waited. We then waited 2 stinkin' hours on the plane. The excuse: Someone was supposed to be on the plane but they weren't but their bag was and the bag crew had to sift through all bags to find it. this was the same excuse as last time. I asked a stewardess about it. She said a) the bag wasn't on the plane b) this is common b/c they are extra/super cautious about any bags going on a plane without the owner. So, we arrived in Port-a-Prince 2 hours late at dusk, so by the time we got our bags and met Vera it was dark. I was nervous about that, but it was actually quite nice. After getting chewed out by Barbara for not informing her we were coming (we only informed Vera, didn't know we had to tell Barbara too), we headed for a hotel where I thought we had reservations. Nathan got to hold his baby girl for the first time! She had been waiting with Barbara for about3-4 hours, so she was asleep.
We got to that hotel, discovered we didn't have reservations, they called another hotel who had room, the Habitation Hatt hotel. It was very nice. Nice clean rooms, gated, a/c, running water, tv, fans and a gorgeous pool. We all slept good that night!
We spent the day at the hotel. Taylor swam in the pool a lot while Charlene and I watched. I thought she was ready for a nap, so I didn't get her swimsuit on. That afternoon she didn't go either, it started to get stormy looking. The restaurant there is wonderful. It is bright and airy and the food is delicious.
Charlene is much more active at 10 months that she was at 6 months. She can crawl everywhere, she can walk holding on to things--she wasn't even using her legs at all last time. She talks a lot, grabs everything and has one huge honkin' tooth on top (top right). She has one bottom tooth (left) you can see and the right one just broke through. So cute. She cries more, gets mad more and doesn't sit in the Jeep very well anymore. She has to be moving. Last time it took her 3 days to smile at me without being prompted. She was doing that the first day this time. She loves being around us, loves being held and LOVES these little sweet potato baby snack things I brought. Should've brought cases of that!
Taylor loves playing with her little sister. She enjoys giving her little pieces of food, toys to play with and making her laugh. Charlene responds to her name, so Taylor would call her name when we were at the pool and Charlene would look and Taylor would jump in the pool real funny. Charlene loved that!
We all took a nap this afternoon. Nathan got the first chance at a nap, then we 3 girls all layed down on one of the beds. Charlene fell asleep on me and Taylor beside me. I slept about 2 hours and the girls about 3 hours.
We had an appointment at the US Embassy today at 11am. We got picked up about 8:30am and headed over there. I brought all the papers i needed, but we still had to fill them out. I've never seen so many people in one waiting area before! All waiting for Visas I guess. Charlene's birth mom was there, so it was great to see her. I was really hoping to meet her last time, but it never worked out. I have so many questions for her, but there wasn't anyone to translate for me :( She got to hold Charlene for a lot of our wait. We signed out papers, swore before some official that we would take good care of Charlene and answered some questions. The birth mom did her interview while we were there and took Charlene with her. All went well.
Barbara then took the 4 of us and Charlene's birth mom to the village (orphanage). We took some pictures together, toured the village, and ate lunch with LaWanna and all the babies. We then went back to the hotel.
Nathan took Taylor swimming while Charlene and I stayed back for hopefully a nap. Charlene napped a bit at the Embassy, but really needed a good long nap. Charlene wouldn't take a nap, but about 20 minutes later I hear Taylor and Nathan coming up the stairs and she's crying hysterically. She was trying to get out of the pool on the side and slipped and hit her mouth, knocking out 2 teeth. Fortunately, they were baby teeth. Nathan thought she only knocked out the front one that was super loose anyway, but when I looked, I noticed the one next to it was gone too! nathan's eyes gew wide. After about 10 minutes of calming Taylor down, he went back to the pool and found the 2nd tooth! (He had the first one already) Unbelievable. Charlene was so off schedule and so tired, that she fell asleep at bedtime, but without a bottle, so she awoke about 3am hungry! I fed her, but she didn't want to lay down alone, so she fell asleep on me and we all slept the rest of the night. Not the best night's rest, but ok.
The food at this hotel is delicious. There isn't many choices, but what we've had has been good. All I can eat is beans and rice, but it is sooo good. I was going to order a salad, but Vera warned that we don't know what water was used to wash the veggies, so I get beans and rice. Taylor also loves the beans and rice but has also gotten spaghetti. Nathan has tried various sandwiches. They have the best french toast for breakfast and the freshest orange juice.
We ate b'fst then Nathan and Taylor went swimming, then we got packed up, and sat down to eat lunch and Barbara showed up to take us to the beach. Taylor was complaining of a stomach ache, so we knew she had to eat. Barbara couldn't wait, so she called vera to come get us. She did and we went back to the village. We switched bags from Barbara's car into Vera's and headed to the beach. It's where we are now. It's been alright so far. Will write more later.