Saturday, September 27, 2014

Passing tests, winning hearts.

Subtitle of truth: All words, no adorable pictures. Fair warning!

Primrose completed the first three of four big labs today: an ultrasound, an x-ray and a contrast enema x-ray (boo-ya, it's always a good blog when you can use that word!). Toby and J were off at swim team, Isaac was building elaborate balloon-and-yarn games in the front hallway, and I had just put our girl down for a nap after a long morning. It was the perfect moment to call in and start scheduling some of the un-fun on our medical to-to list.

The scheduler surprised me after offering a date two and a half weeks away by mumbling casually that if we could get to the hospital ASAP they could get all but her MRI done today. Isaac was a champ, helping me grab her shoes & socks and a bag of toys. He held open all the doors and pushed all the elevator buttons while I carried the drowsy princess to her waiting staff.

It's never easy to see a kid cry and hold them down anyway, but it was harder to do today than it ever was with my boys. They always had us there with them any time something difficult had to be done, and we have always known what the general result would be. All we know about our daughter's medical experiences comes from dry translated paperwork we've been given. On FangFang's Chinese Child Welfare medical report, it says she didn't have a foster mom until she was four months old and then it was "for the professional care and enjoy the warmth of family." She had already been in the hospital twice by then and the second time was for two different kinds of post-operative infections. It's hard to believe that living in the orphanage didn't contribute to those problems no matter how much they have improved over the past 20 years.

After her fosters were on the scene the report starts to say things like, "her mother usually takes her to the park" or "her mother says she likes aspermous watermelon" which we take to mean seedless, and YES ma'am, she really really does. Is it odd that I love to see the word "mother" in report without the qualifier "foster"? I hope this baby knew love and assumed it would always be her own. She's certainly had practice at bonding.

Thanks to two other empty open handed mothers tonight, she will forgive me for holding her down. I imagine it's possible she's accessing that pragmatic resignation we have benefitted from and that I never want her to need again. Her hitching hoarse-voiced cry stuns me, but I can't help but welcome finally getting to it. I was surprised to feel something like joy being able to stroke her hair and hold her little body along with the nurses in the nautical candy-painted x-ray room. Selfishly, I was almost eager about the whole thing, raring to take my spot and give her everything she could want. Everything except of course to get up and leave that awful radiology place where they do such uncomfortable things to her.

The results came while we were at a park afterward (way to be prompt, amazing OHSU pediatric radiology department!) watching her slide and run and squeal. She has all her organs, and initial reports show all functioning well. Can you believe that? I don't yet. I haven't cried much, and I feel like maybe I haven't breathed much since she came home. I'm doing a bit of both tonight.

We went right out and had a celebration dinner where she ate my whole veggie burger and all the tomatoes from my salad. Then we promptly bought her and her ecstatic brothers an aquarium. It seemed the thing to do.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Not a bat of a lash!

The first appointment for our girl today went very well. It was a piece of cake, proving that worrying works. The pediatrician was very thorough and kind, helpful in every way. We didn't have any blood drawn or shots given so as far as Primrose is concerned we spent the afternoon in a too-small play room with a killer view meeting strangely touchy-feely people all in matching outfits.
It's a blue unitard type thing. She really isn't half-nekkid, I swear.
To make today's appointment doable, my Mom drove up from Salem an hour away to watch the boys. This meant taking Toby to his piano lesson, which ended up meaning they sat on the freeway for 40 minutes trying to get home when somebody's truck went up in flames during rush hour. My mom's reaction to these inconveniences upon inconveniences was to take the boys out to dinner and give them a Pokemon movie she found earlier in the week. I just hope the boys don't connect car fires with wealths of little boy treasure raining down upon them, or we'll have to research homeschool anti-arson curriculae ASAP.

People have asked how we ended up adopting. We have had a long time to think about that, but never had a good answer until just the past few weeks. "It is just something I have always wanted to do" was the best I had up until now. When I turned a million years old and was still single, I even daydreamed about adopting on my own. Jonathan and I talked about it the day we met. Lately I've been realizing a better, more clear answer: I got this impulse from my parents. They find ways to be family to people. No, that's not quite right: they see the people around them as family. They're the kind of friends who will be there to help in practical ways and who never forget when others are generous with them. They do it easily, without it feeling formal.

I have never felt more like we really live here than now.
The truth is, left to my own devices I just like my people. My little group here, maybe with a few extras from outside life. But it's good to stretch. Primrose is our daughter- she's my people now, and my people are better for it. Getting to her, however, was a stretch. Or it felt like one at the time. Now that she's here it feels like it was the kind of stretch somebody makes to reach a TV remote or the drink menu rather than one that would equal a marathon or something impressive. Last night Isaac said, "Mom, I'm super tired tonight but I'm really glad she's finally here." Words right out of my mouth, kiddo.

Stickers in the bottom of my bag saved our bacon in the waiting room.
We have no less than a page and half of additional medical tests ordered up and ready to go. It's too much to worry over so I'm just putting my head down and stepping forward. Spoiler alert: my Mom's already on board for helping with the boys.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A Long-Anticipated First

Tomorrow is the first of our US doctor’s appointments for Primrose. I have a certain amount of anxiety about this, most of which centers on making sure we’re doing what needs to be done to get all the information we need as quickly as possible. This is my job now. I’m made for this kind of thing, let me at 'er. (Please let me not come across too "Whacko Rabid Mom". At least not in the first appointment.)

We have had the good fortune of getting a response from the specialist in Cincinnati who trains all the other specialists in her condition. This guy invented the procedure done to kids born with her birth defect. Our new local pediatrician has insisted on waiting to order any of his required information until after this appointment, which took almost a month to get. This local gal is supposed to be an adoption specialist pediatrician, so we’re giving her a chance for now. I am trying to have a decent attitude going in. It annoys me that she wouldn’t at least schedule the things the specialist requested. I will be a very squeaky wheel if there are delays because of this pediatrician.

Primrose may need no other follow-ups. She could be as whole as she appears, which is to say she is 100% as healthy as an adorable little… feisty but cute animal? What would that be, like a hedgehog or something?
Speaking of hedgehogs, she adores animals of any kind.
Fish in particular make her shriek with joy.
I would love prayer for the doctor to have clear information, to miss nothing and to act promptly on whatever needs action. The icing would be that the appointment and likely blood draws and other procedures not be too traumatic for our girl. Other families are reporting pediatricians needing to take up to 9 vials of blood. That could be tough with a little bit of a 19 month-old. That could be come-back-tomorrow-to-finish tough. I bet you $50 she is going to know a hospital when she sees one, and she is not going to like it. I wouldn't if I were her. She surprises me daily with her chutzpah, though, so maybe she'll waltz in and out without batting a long, lovely eyelash. 

FangFang eats like a horse, runs around happily all day, sleeps like a champ, laughs easily and often. She's scary-smart. She doesn’t seem to have any persistent problems from her birth defect, which may have only involved her lower digestive tract and perhaps minor deviations in her lower vertebrae.

Turn your volume down because this girl is HAPPPPYYYYY about fish:


Every day I try to replace this worry with gratitude. We have friends who are dealing with things far worse. My parents’ friends, our extended family members are trudging along with things that are absolutely no fun at all and may go on to devolve from there. We are grateful for all the gifts we’ve been given and I include Ms. Loves-Bananas in that “we”. We are blessed upon blessed.

No joke, she brought me this famous book
after disappearing down an aisle in the kids room at the library.
I actually looked to see if a librarian planted it, but nope.
I think she likes it for the banana.  
She "reads" books to us. I can't seem to catch a video, but it involves a lot of
Mandarin-babble, darn near Shatneresque emoting and squealing. 
We’ve been talking to the boys about the meaning of the word “fair”. Fair doesn’t mean equal. Fair doesn’t really exist and isn’t something worth longing for (though justice is, but it's not usually what we think we want). Fair seems beautiful and appears to equal “happy” but it’s never really there in the first place. Anyway, I think we can safely say we’ve been given so much more than fair.

So much on top of all the “nice” is packed in our house, what should I find to fuss with and worry over? I hold our little soft-haired beauty and she lets me tickle her neck and it’s almost ridiculous. Thank you, Lord, for these gifts, for this busy life and for this particular living. 

The camera smile!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

We've known each other a whole month!

Our newest American has another week down, including three nights falling asleep in a pack-n-play in a green room while the orchestra played on and on. She loves the instruments, particularly (duh) the strings, and stares at each one as they warm up. It worked out for me to put her in bed at breaks, and like always she slept like a champ. It was fantastic to see all the orchestra folk and have so many of them come up to give our new girlie some love. I've been overwhelmed by the support they've shown us. 
A pillow that folds out into a blanket hand made by a fantastic friend in the orchestra! 
My parents, the kids and I all went swimming together on one of the days. The boys are great swimmers, thanks to community center classes from the age of 2. Primrose watched them dive for rings, swim laps, play with pool noodles and generally swim like fish. Pretty soon she was trying to dive and squirm out of my hands to do exactly what her brothers were doing. We’ll have to add lessons to her weekly obligations ASAP. 

Watermelon for the Dynamic Duo.
Planting plants and looking for bugs.
Yesterday, Isaac gave his sister his beloved pillow pet because she kept lay-hugging it and making high-pitched happy noises. Well, the fact that we bought him a stuffed turtle the size of Florida may have helped just a little to seal the deal. He has been quite generous with her, though. As the younger of her two older brothers, I suppose she has encroached more on his favorite things and status in the family. So far he seems not to mind at all. It probably helps that they are so similar in personality and both crave interaction all.the.time.

See? It is a seriously large stuffed turtle.
FangFang can almost say "turtle" now, though she often says fish in Chinese instead.
Isaac gives her rides on that thing on the hardwood floors.

I’ve come to the decision not to teach much this year. Between running our music academy and performing, I’ve achieved a balance in my life that it’s imperative I maintain. Without a few margins in place, I worry our homeschool, my running (nascent as it is), or my mental health will disappear screaming out the patio door, possibly with its hair on fire and wearing polka dot circus pants. I love teaching, but the weekly daytime commitment of it is just too much for the time being. 

Sock on hand antics! Whatever works!
We’ll have to wait and see whether any of the opportunities I’ve had will return when I’m ready to get back to them. It's kind of a bummer to have that hanging over my head. Sometimes I daydream about the idea of year-long maternity leave like the Scandinavians reportedly have. It wouldn’t apply in our situation, I suppose, since I haven’t been full time anywhere except with each of the kids in a long while. Thank God (really, truly) for my husband and whole family.

She's learned a lot in one month. Her language skills and skills in general seem through the roof to me. People ask us if we're sure she's only 20 months (we're sure). I can take no credit, so I just marvel right along side them. Check out how she says "tomato" and understands everything I say in my supremely annoying "mom voice" in this video!


One month into our lives as a family of five, I can say it's easier than I had anticipated. She sleeps well, she seems happy, we love her. It's a busy life with very few breaks, but it's working out. It was such a long wait, I think we each had time to be truly ready for her to take her place with us. Nothing is better than seeing her right where we wanted her all along. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Huh. That was weird.

Tonight was weird. You’ll need some backstory to understand, so I will do that annoying thing where I take the whole blog to get back to tonight’s story.

This entire weekend was long and overbooked. It felt surreal: I’ll admit it was unfortunate timing. There wasn’t a choice available to me other than just sucking it up and going to work. In one of the gigs, I had some wonderful solos and loved the conductor and the repertoire. In another, I’ve already asked out of some things and didn’t want to jeopardize my paycheck. In every gig I have, the fee is per service. There is no sick leave, no maternity time. Man, I sound desperate to justify the packed weekend, don’t I… sigh.

Well, it seemed to all go swimmingly. Our little bit of spiced fierceness loved meeting everybody and her brothers have always loved tagging along for symphony weeks. At break in Eugene she wanted to wander around, following the sound of the instruments. I even wished we had had more time before the second half of rehearsal.

She fell asleep as planned in the car after lunch on the way to my second gig two hours away. The boys were great, playing and giggling with her in the long stretches of the boring drive and then pointedly ignoring her when we wanted her to sleep. Honestly, she is easier than Isaac ever was as far as sleeping and schedules go.

On Sunday, she met a LOT of wonderful people at church. Most of them were pros, smiling and saying hello without invading her space, being playful and fun while following her lead. Just a couple insisted on touching her arm or trying to grab at her hands. She doesn’t freak out, just pulls back and shakes her head fast, clinging a little tighter to me with her legs. It’s hard to know what to say when people disregard her signals and push her boundaries. She’s probably fine, it’s probably standard one year-old behavior, and I don’t want to reinforce her discomfort by becoming tense and protesting myself. On the other hand she’s a pretty flexible kid, but I’d rather she not be forced to flex any more. I feel a strong urge to let her lead.


In adoption communities, there seem to be more than a few very finicky moms. They have particular words, questions, interactions they do not tolerate and (at least online) that will make them crawl right down everybody’s throat. Before we met our daughter, I thought maybe they were just difficult people, stubborn and coincidentally able to stick out the long and difficult adoption process. Now I realize it’s probably that they just don’t know what else to do when they encounter uncomfortable situations with their kids “from hard places”. They have a special knowledge of their child and her history, and they have the deep responsibility to help that child through all kinds of situations. They don’t often have many allies with similar experiences. With all our three weeks as an adoptive family, I already know that when I see others being ultra finicky and demanding online, I will be sympathetic.

We try to teach our kids to be sensitive, to weigh their actions and think about the impact they have. On the flipside of that, we work hard to help them give others the benefit of the doubt and let things roll off, taking into account all sorts of possible reasons when somebody is grumpy or offensive. We include the brokenness of humanity as a reason so many people can be unpleasant. I myself give them lots of opportunities to practice forgiving by being flawed right in front of their eyes daily. Ideally, it helps them empathize and show compassion (and the flawed part can't be helped, they're stuck!). We plan to teach Primrose to do the same, which means we need to model the same.

So I don’t say anything, but I turn my body away shielding her when she squirms. We smile and I touch the (usually) older ladies’ arms when they seem to miss her discomfort. How do you let a one year old know it’s okay to say no to more introductions? And yet by the next encounter, she is reaching out to touch fingers, ET style, with a kind and patient new friend. So then I think 'what do you know, anyway?' I am just making all this parenting stuff up as I go. Everybody is. 


Hopworks: the spicy minestrone got a big thumbs up!

She didn’t have any dramatic melt-downs, although for a while after running happily around she did want to lay on the floor at church and she would not go anywhere without being carried by me. J sat near her and they made up little peek-a-boo games that didn’t require her to stand. We had retreated to a back hallway where they pipe in the sermon for folks with babies, and it was a nice respite.

Today was low-key with my stupid Chinese cold and fatigue lingering, and tonight was outright weird. We sat on the porch watching bats fly overhead, and she shrieked excitedly at every one. Then she shrieked excitedly as Isaac practiced cello. Near the end of his session I remembered I had made some little videos for him to use for practice while we were in China, and put them on our TV so he could play along (here if you're really curious). Primrose was beyond excited shrieking about this. She started jumping in place, a mix between dancing and moshing without a pit. It was one of those toddler moments when they look happy and excited but you know they are skating on the edge of hysterical laughing and crying and careening into furniture.

Then Isaac’s TV practice video ended and “mama” disappeared from the screen. And she freaked right on out! She acted afraid, clawing to climb up on me and then wailed as though she had been physically hurt. Isaac and I were both so surprised we froze! For a fraction of a second I wondered if her tummy hurt or she had been afraid of the “me” on the screen after all but too scared to express it until I went away. Later, when she had calmed down and Jonathan was in the room, we played one of my videos again and she seemed perfectly happy all along. She took her bath and went to bed like a sane person.

See what a conundrum parenting a toddler can be? Was it the impermanence of somebody she needs that scared her? Or just the fact that it was late evening and the song she liked ended? Or something completely unrelated? Either way it was sad and I hope the calmer weeks will help us avoid creeping her out and upsetting her like that again.


Poor happy easy beautiful slightly freaked out kiddo!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Aw, honey, it's okay!

Our daughter is a master communicator. She loves people. Like Isaac, she will play with toys as long as they keep somebody playing with her. She picks up expressions and cues into moods. At one year old, she can already make fun of herself.

Check out this video and pay attention around 36 seconds in. She starts out explaining to me that she would like to spoon the soup her dang self, and moves into something else entirely. This kind of transition happens all the time with her. She savors every opportunity to laugh and to make us laugh, too.


Her ease of adjustment seems to be nothing short of miraculous. Today I wondered: what would she do if her foster mom walked in the room this very minute? Would she run to her and not want to come back to me? It’s not that I’m jealous or greedy for her to pick me! Pick me!, it’s that I wonder how the calibration of her heart has changed. What’s going on in there? I wish I could see this all from her view, and in that way not miss anything she needs.

This is FangFang's Etch-A-Sketch, but Isaac made a cool picture.
He does stuff like this in the morning because he likes to get up before everybody else.
I had to take a photo quick before she shook it up.
I made her cry the saddest cry the other day. As we were leaving a store and getting buckled back into the car, I was struggling to get her hands through her carseat straps. I had to take a toy from her hand for a minute, which of course she then twisted and reached for and started to protest. When I said, “Wait!” a bit too sharply, she took one surprised look at me leaning over her space and started to wail. When it didn’t stop right away, I saw both boys had started to tear up a bit, too. It bothered them that none of our voices were soothing her. That “mom” wasn’t enough in that moment.

It reminded me of that first day, holding her on the couch at the Children’s Welfare Institute while she sobbed and hiccupped on the back of her hand. I ended up pulling over almost as soon as I had taken off so I could find a way to comfort her and I was so relieved when rubbing her cheek worked. It just sounded like a deeper cry, a more sincere one than the average frustrated tired toddler. Remember how I said we keep reading more into everything she does? It felt justified this time.

She's fond of bling.

She wants to wear a tutu and have two hair clips?
Done. 
It’s almost unfathomable, the amount of adjustment kids are asked to attempt. Even this tiny master communicator, even if she were more mature in terms of language and logic, she would not be able to tell us what this is like for her. What she needs when she's freaked out and cries extra long. We still would not be able to share the whole experience with her. It would feel good to say we’ll give her all the love to magically cover the places we don’t understand, but I’m not sure it’s adequate. I'm not looking for reassurance and I'm fine if when she's older she has no interest in making her adoption a central theme in her life; we're a great fit as a family. It's just that I want to know all the parts of her, even the places where she has had loss. In a lot of ways, I am grateful that she came to us so young that we will be the only family she remembers. That we have all these years set out ahead of us to snuggle her in, to "get" her.


She has my heart, and all of her dad’s and all of the boys’. We are so proud of her and stagger around in love in a soup of cheesy feelings thick as Velveeta. A big part of me cannot wait for her to know that in her bones.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

She shoots, she scores!

Tonight was my first night away for rehearsal and here you see a picture of the biggest problem. A very kind guy named Wayne in the Camas Union High auditorium parking lot changed this thing for me. I was even on time (by a hair) for the downbeat. It's a charmed life I lead.


Best news of the week: Primrose didn't cry a single tear with her dad leading her team of assistants tonight. He made me wait until I drove all the way home to give me this report, because he is spicy just like his daughter. It was so nice to be relieved of the stress of putting all the nighttime duties on J alone. As I was driving to the gig (but before my tire started going whoooosh whoooosh whoooosh), I realized that it was the first night for either of us to fly solo. Single parents of the world, you should know I think of you often. It's just so much harder to go it alone for a night or two, I can hardly fathom being a sole caretaker.

We were given a meal today (hot dang, that is a fantastic thing to do for somebody!) and I'll give you three guesses who ate every bite of hers. Primrose loves lots of complex flavors and as it turns out, kindhearted tortilla soup is definitely on her menu. I have my fingers crossed that her diet won't be limited when we go through all the medical checks and get the full picture of her digestive health. She sure seems to plow through just about everything. We're using her to push the boys' mild food pickiness a bit. Good thing they're too young to harbor resentment (much).

Tonight we played some of Bloch's Concerto Grosso No. 2 and it was a lovely re-entry to work. There are moments when it sounds so much like Vaughn Williams, and others where it's totally "Baroque-ish" as our conductor would say. Bloch lived in Oregon for a while and liked the viola, so I'm required by law to like his music, don't you think? It felt wonderful to sink into that kind of rich texture after such an unusually long (3 week!) hiatus.

Here's a video of a smaller group playing the piece in a space with the exact acoustic of my freshman dorm stairwell. I used to love to practice long slow passages there, because I was just that annoying.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Wuhan travel series: Packing

This post is my guide to packing for travel to China, part of a 4 part series.
Links to the other three posts are at the end of this one.
We traveled for adoption from August 14-28th, 2014

China Packing Tips
Adult Meds- 
Yes, amen, bring all the meds. Get a z-Pack or two, some Cipro, Immodium, cold meds, favorite painkillers (OTC and otherwise), allergy meds (including topical if you’re prone to that), the works. Meds do not take up much room and being uncomfortable in a traveling situation is miserable. Take meds out of boxes/bulky bottles but keep instructions with them in snack-sized Ziplocs. Then put all the meds for you (or each member of your family) in a bigger Ziploc. I had a plastic shoebox from the dollar store sitting around so I put the whole shebang along with make-up in there, which made unpacking easy. If you don’t end up needing them, you can get rid of them at the end of your trip and use the space for souvenirs. We donated a bunch to the adoption agency.

Bar Soap- 
A bar of soap can be nice since the hotels generally only offer gels. Obviously this is personal preference, but I hate those smelly gels and it was nice to have a good old bar of Dial (which you might be able to find in country- I didn’t try). 

Clothes- 
For a two week trip, I would bring five or six days worth of clothing. You can wash things in the sink and let them dry a couple of days or use one of the cheap laundry services ubiquitous in China. There is also a third option for summer: come back to your room every few hours strip down and hang up your clothes so they can air out. If you're diligent and generous with deodorant, you can totally stretch the clothes to work for two weeks without washing. Bring some workout type clothes, but otherwise bring whatever you are most comfortable in. Also, bring enough skivvies for every day traveling plus three or four.

One additional clothing note: do not I repeat do NOT use a ziploc or similar non-breathing bag for dirty clothes in summer. We had a tee shirt grow MOLD in a matter of days. The heat and particular soup of dampness became a disgusting, staining collection of green spots. It was weird and sad and felt like we were being punished for trying to keep things clean. The horror. 

Shoes-
Comfortable is paramount. If it's summer, you can wear sandals all over so ignore people who were worried about dirty streets unless you are going way out in the boonies. Maybe bring one closed-toe option in case it ends up raining. One thing I wish I had brought was a thin pair of cheap flip-flops. It would have been nice in the hotel with icky carpet, and if the shower had been gross I would have worn them in there, in addition to the pool areas. The nicer hotel ironically gave out slippers. 

Adoption Specific China Packing Tips
Kid Meds- 
In addition to the adult meds above get a lice kit, scabies cream, pinkeye stuff, painkiller, benedryl, anti-fungal cream, nice thick hypoallergenic diaper cream, gentle baby wash/shampoo. Put anything that needs a prescription but isn’t pediatric dose-specific (scabies, pinkeye, etc) in your name if you can. Not only might you need it for yourself in the end (who knows?) but your insurance should cover it, which is not going to happen for your kid until they are in your custody. 


Diapers-
If you’re adopting a young one and are not going somewhere extraordinarily rural, bring only a few diapers from home. We brought a few (like 6- enough for an afternoon after meeting our 18 month old girl) and we paid anywhere from US $10 to US $25 for a big pack of Pampers Sensitive. I saw Huggies as well as Chinese brands. Wipes are also everywhere, and I found the sensitive ones in larger more Western style shops. Diapers are $25 at our Target, so I didn’t think they were that much more expensive at all, something I had been warned about in people’s blogs. Maybe they fluctuate, but to me they were too big a gamble in terms of sizing and luggage space to bother bringing from home.

Diaper Bag-
I was really glad we brought backpacks instead of diaper bags. The kind we brought had several huge pockets and an interior sleeve for laptops in addition to side pockets for bottles of water. Backpacks expand more than diaper bags, are easier to carry, can be hung on the back of a stroller more easily, and go through airport scanners and such without as much worry about the straps getting caught on stuff. They also look nicer and don't make your shoulders/neck hurt from a lopsided load. I would also recommend a safety pouch for your passport, cash & credit cards. I never hid it under my shirt, but it was nice to have in the outside pocket to keep everything tidy.  

Cameras-
If you regularly use an SLR or fancy camera, by all means bring it. Otherwise, clear off your camera and just use the heck out of that. iPhones and similar do a great job. The focus (hahaha- FOCUS!!) will be on helping that new little one. You will be both busier and more helpless than you've been, maybe ever. Take more pictures than you think you'll need. I'm really glad we did.

The rest of my Wuhan travel series:
Packing 

From Hong Kong to Wuhan

The Wuhan Poly Hotel and Getting to Carrefour

Food and Shopping Near Hongshan Square