In March, 1994, the Gladney Center for Adoption's first internationally adopted child came home to the United States from Shanghai, China. Since that time, Gladney has placed nearly 1000 healthy infants and toddlers, and children of all ages with special needs, with families living in the United States. Over the past several years, adoption from China has emerged as an effective way to make or grow a family.
Friday, December 28, 2012
China Winter Tour - December 26
Robin Reif - December 26
First stop: Temple of
Heaven Park. 14 degrees outside, but locals act like it’s Spring. Under frozen
trees, they’re ballroom dancing, playing cards and mahjong, gambling, gossiping
with friends. Apparently, Chinese women retire by 50 and men by 55 to make room
the young, which helps explain the crowds on a frigid weekday. Whatever they’re
wearing to keep warm, we want some of that. Bitterly cold, we still join in Tai
Chi, then continue to the Hall of Prayer, an ornate circular structure where
Ming Dynasty emperors prayed for a good harvest.
On to hutong area where
a parade of red rickshaws, parked near the edge of a frozen lake, take us down
narrow alleys to local homes for lunch. A remnant of Old Beijing, these grey
painted flats hugging central courtyards are the new hot area for Party
Officials and celebrities.
Our host, a feisty,
enterprising lady, serves a sensational meal then ushers us into her
paper-cutting studio across the courtyard where her work is for sale ensuring
her hospitality is generously repaid before we leave.
Happiness Group at CCCWA
Panda Group at CCCWA
Later at the Beijing
office of the China Center for Children’s Welfare and Adoption, we get a
glimpse of our “holy of holies”--the famous Matching Room. Standing at the door
with our children, we look around at the spot that changed our lives for the
good and forever.