Cindy Brown and Allen Joseph

Cindy and Allen

Cindy Brown and Allen Joseph

After many years of living and traveling through Asia, we are about to embark on the wildest adventure of a lifetime - becoming parents! We are adopting a baby boy in Vinh Long, Vietnam. Please join us on our journey to be united with baby Bao.



Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 26th 2009

Well, we are back home, safe and sound, and Bao is snuggled in his new crib. This is where our story ends of our journey to Bao. And this is where our new life begins as a family - Allen, Cindy, and the boy from Vinh Long. ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 26th 2009

We have just added photos to our blog. They are throughout, and we have also added two videos to the entry "We Got Him!" Enjoy.... read more

Asia » South Korea » Seoul January 24th 2009

So the Boy from Vinh Long, who rarely got outside the orphanage door, took his first international flight, Hanoi to Seoul, Korea. He was pretty good, well, when he was sleeping, which was most of the flight. They brought us a child's passport holder with pages to have the captain of each flight sign. They also brought us a really cute bassinet and attached it to the wall in front of us in bulkhead seating. Very comfortable and he seemed to enjoy being in a makeshift crib. Sounds great right? But, he was hungry way before we landed, so we gave him the bottle too early and then when we started our descent, his ears were really hurting him. Screaming, screaming, screaming. Upon landing, he looked totally peaceable, thumb in mouth, face and body relaxed, looking ... read more
Charity Box
Chaity Box
And Still Crying

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 24th 2009

Shortest flight we could find on the return and still it will be about 27 hours door to door between our hotel to home. The itinerary is: Hanoi to Seoul (4 hours); 4 hour layover in Seoul airport; 13.5 hour flight to Atlanta; 1.75 hour layover in Atlanta during which time we have to collect our luggage and go through customs and hand sealed Bao envelope to customs official and get Bao admitted into country (joy!); 1 hour flight to Tallahassee. So here is what we have just for baby and all carry on: Bottle Bag: Bottled Water - 4 - Check (some airports actually let you bring this in if it is sealed) Baby Bottles - 7 - Filled with powdered formula Formula if Bao Goes Through All Bottles - 1/2 Can - Check Paper ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 24th 2009

It is the day before Tet and we are leaving tonight. We went for lunch at our second favorite place, Quan An Ngon. It means "Delicious" in Vietnamese. The restaurant originally was set in a courtyard, with chefs cooking all around the outer perimeter. The cuisine is all traditional Vietnamese based on the three regions of the country - the North, South, and Central Highlands. The courtyard remains but they also have an indoor part, perfect on a day like today - the coldest day in Hanoi so far. Today we dressed baby Bao in a long-sleeved shirt, pants, socks, a quilted vest, and even a blanket, but still faced comments. What if they knew that he was actually the Boy from Vinh Long, living all of his days until recently in one of the warmest ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 23rd 2009

Today said goodbye to our friends. Our friend Lan had a beautiful scroll made for Bao with very special calligraphy. On the right hand side at the top it says in Chinese characters, Tet 2009. On the left hand side top is the lunar new year. On the right hand side bottom is his name Bao Tien, and in the middle is a message for health for children. The calligrapher was ranked number 1 in Vietnam four years ago. Traffic is becoming wearing; due to Tet, it is unsafe anymore to cross the street, which is frustrating as we love to walk through the old quarter. There are just so many motos and cars on the road because of the holiday. So we always call for a taxi. Today I left Allen and Bao in the ... read more
Calligrapher
Calligraphy
Scrolls

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 23rd 2009

Aah, post scabies treatment. Bathtime was fun for Bao, except that the water was room temperature. We used La Vie bottled water as we didn't want him to get the shower water in his mouth. Ok, when arrive home are going to resume our pledge of not spoiling baby. Then we dressed him and laid him down in his crib. He looked at his hands like long lost friends. "I thought I'd never see you again", he seemed to be thinking. He stared at them in wonder, twisting them here and there, and cooing at them. (ok, made up the cooing part). In general, a renewed love affair with hands. The funny part? He was so exhausted from all day crying and trauma over realization of once again traitor parents that he zonked out, legs splayed, ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 22nd 2009

Forgot to mention the biggest news, Bao got his visa yesterday! This was the final step in such a long process and we were thrilled! Our interview with the U.S. Embassy was easy, basically just waiting while the liasion reviews your paperwork and paying the visa fee. Just like the passport photo, the visa photo was fabulous. Again, don't know how they got him to look so perfect, like glamour shots, not a hair out of place. The Embassy staffer even commented on it. Only issue was that Bao burst into tears right when our name was called to be interviewed. I tried to tell him that America only likes smiling, happy babies but he was having none of it.... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 22nd 2009

Today was the day of reckoning, the second scabies treatment. The doctor said he didn't have scabies after we applied the first treatment, but we decided to apply it again as a preventative measure. We had to keep the cream on all of us for at least 8 hours. As you recall, Bao's favorite thing besides feeding time is sucking his thumb(s). Therefore, we had to swaddle him with arms at his sides. Luckily, the family next door had already checked out. Bao delivered two lessons to us today. The first is that you have to multitask with children. We thought we could handle the triple challenge of changing the poopy diaper while applying the scabies cream and keeping hands out of mouth and poop, when Bao suddenly projectile gakked onto the bed and then wanted ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi January 21st 2009

Well, it has been eight days since we have been united with Bao. This is what we have observed. For the first nights (and days), he had a lot of night terrors. At first we would think that he was awake, as he would be screaming and thrashing around, but he was really sleeping. Even when he slept without the night terrors, it was fitful, and he would contort his body and head and thrash about every 10 minutes. Now he sleeps peacefully, has few night terrors, and the other day he was napping in my arms and I touched his cheek and he smiled. We were not able to give him full formula at first because we brought ours from home and it was too rich for him, so we had to dilute it more ... read more




Tot: 1.098s; Tpl: 0.04s; cc: 4; qc: 84; dbt: 0.0991s; 1; m:saturn w:www (104.131.125.221); sld: 3; ; mem: 1.4mb