Day 7: Shopping with Ann

The day started with an international call back home to help calm some nerves. Steve’s flight had been delayed leaving San Francisco by 3.5 hours due to high winds and it pushed one of the kiddos over the edge. After some dramatic sobbing on the other end and soothing words on my end, the drama storm seemed to pass. I’m glad Steve is home, Steve’s glad Steve is home and I’m pretty sure Bill is ecstatic Steve is home.

Today was our big shopping day. We hired Ann Yang at http://www.redthreadchina.com to take us shopping. It sounds extravagant but it isn’t and it’s the best way to get good deals here. You pay Ann a (very reasonable) hourly fee and she does all the negotiating. And, boy are the deals good.

Red Thread China is geared towards assisting adoptive parents with care packages to the child they are matched with, services while families are in China and humanitarian aid and donations to orphanages throughout China. We did not get to shop with Ann last time and I’m so glad we did this time.

She met us in the lobby at 9:30 and we hailed a cab to the “toy market”. While it does have toys, the market also has many other kinds of souvenirs and today’s items of choice were silk dresses. I wanted to get Rowynn and Finnley both silk dresses for Chinese New Year. Because they run $3 – $5 each Ann helped us get sizes to fit now and a couple each for them to grow into. XiXi enjoyed picking the colors for her and her sister’s dresses. I also got a couple for me, some silk two piece outfits for the boys, Chinese army hats and tons and tons of chopsticks. Ann said XiXi should take them as gifts to her fellow classmates when she starts school.

I’m pretty sure I bought more than I planned because they told me I was “hot” and had the perfect body for the Chinese dress. LOL! Things people will say to make a sale.

From there we went to the pearl market which is an amazing place that is a large wholesale center for semiprecious stones. Quality pearls come at an amazing price and make for wonderful keepsakes to save and give to daughters when they get married. Finnley and Rowynn will each have them.

The store is loaded with cases and cases of pearls on strings. All colors, sizes, lusters and quality can be found. You get to select your pearls and the girls in the shop will hand knot them while you watch and finish with the clasp of your choosing. XiXi watched very closely. When Ann told her she would get hers when she gets married she scrunched up her face and giggled.

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After the pearl market we went to a back alley of authentic street shops to look for a clay teapot and some wooden ram carvings (since the upcoming new year will bring in the year of the ram). We were bargaining for the teapot that started at 80RMB and Ann told me I could get it down to 25. I just couldn’t do it — and stopped at 40 (about 6 bucks). The woman looked so happy and told Ann how nice I was.

The final taxi ride took us to a sports shop that sold athletic jerseys. Here I found Chinese basketball team practice jersey sets for $5. The boys will love them.

Ann is so fast and efficient, we were done by noon and back in time for our 12:30 meeting with our guide to put together our packet for the consulate appointment scheduled for Monday.

XiXi again just went along with everything with a smile on her face. No whining or complaining. I think she likes shopping, especially when she gets to pick things out.

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Back at the room, we ordered a room service meal of pizza and fried rice and enjoyed more TV. XiXi has a weakness for Chinese soap operas, reality shows and The Matrix (we’ve watched it twice now).

Tomorrow, our guide will take us and another family to Shamian island–a part of Guangzhou that has a colonial history and architecture. Looking forward to another fun day!

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Deb Sauer
    Feb 07, 2015 @ 18:38:39

    Ann is great. I went shopping with her 6 years ago when we were there.

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Reply

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