Friday, October 31, 2008

Rain and more rain

Well, the rain continues and is likely going to rain the entire next week. Flooding! Boy, water past your knee and higher on some roads. John went out this morning and returned soaked. He is enjoying touring the side roads.

Regardless, we ventured out with the other families to Hanoi Hilton. It was quite humbling to see this place,right next to our hotel, where many prisoners were housed. We can actually look out our hotel window and see it.

We go out later today to get supplies. We are enjoying this little cafe in the hotel. We ate breakfast and lunch there.
It is amazing to think we will see Nate on Sunday!!

Yuck factor

John and I caught the sun out and headed out to shop. He ventured out earlier and had a place I HAD to see. I should have known better!!! We go down this little alley (about a block long). At first we saw beautiful fruit and veggies. Amazing looking fresh items. There were some little booths selling avariety of items. Then, I started seeing all this meat being chopped. I won't even begin to say what all we saw. I walked as fast as I could to get out of there. Dodging motor bikes, people, and puddles of water. I barely made it out. John wanted me to stand in front of the bowl of squirmy eels, but I said that is a picture for him.

The first picture is of some lovely ladies sitting by the lake. They wanted John to take their picture and laughed when they saw it. They look like they have known each other for years.
The other 2 families get in tonight. Then we will head to Thanh Hoa on Sunday. The G&R is now on Tuesday, but we hope to see Nate both days. We have really enjoyed seeing all the babies with their forever families. The hotel is full of little ones. They were dressed up in costumes and went trick or treating throughout the hotel.

Happy Halloween Tatertot! We miss you! Remember to Follow the Yellow Brick Road.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Our meager dwell

The kitchen. His crib- notice the pink flowers

A great room to relax in, watch TV, and post on the computer. The TV has some English channels.


It is a raining Friday here. It is suppose to rain off and on all weekend. The drive in from the airport is very similar to China, only motor scooter instead of bicycles. Everyone honks! It is actually interesting to watch. I sit here and listen to the horns honking.

I slept good! It took a while to get settled, but I was o-u-t! John said he slept okay, too.

Two FTIA families got to Hanoi last week, they have there children who are from a different orphanage. They are going to Halong Bay for the weekend. We hope to go next weekend. It is a beautiful place that we both really want to visit.

I just pinched myself. Yes, we are here!


We made it to the hotel about 30 minutes ago. The airlines was very efficient. However, the plane was extremely warm and I didn't sleep much. John rested on that leg (14 hours). We actually left about 30 minutes later than planned and still arrived 30 minutes faster than planned. The 2nd leg (5 hours) was much cooler and I slept-hard! I feel much better.

This room is huge! Way more than we were expecting. We have a 2 bed rooms, a kitchen, a dinning room table, 2 bathrooms, and a TV area. His crib is already in the room. We will go to the store tomorow and get things we need. Not sure what else we will do.

We are going to Thanh Hoa on Sunday, but found out our Giving and Receiving isn't until Tuesday. Not a big surprise. We had heard rumors from other families that it usually gets moved back a day. We will now spend Sunday and Monday in TH and return to Hanoi on Tuesday.

Gotta go...getting tired.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Busy, but not hectic!?!

Not sure why, but I don't have the stress and frantic feeling that I expected to have at this point. There are things to do, but I have actually had time to relax today. Tatertot is enjoying her time with her Ms. Lolly (J-sister). She got here yesterday and is getting familiar with our routine. She is not talking a lot about us leaving.

J- is off tomorrow so we will go vote. I still have a few loose ends, but it will get done. If not, it will be okay. The main thing, this time next week we will have Nate. We will be parents of 2 children.

We hope to be able to post on Friday that we have made it to Hanoi. It all depends on the internet. We have the webcams set for the computers.

Please keep all of us in your thoughts and prayers. It will be a long adventure for all of us!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

3 Countries 1 Family

I could not have said it better! We were surprised with this cake at our gathering of the families we traveled to China with in 2004. We had a great time!!

Monday, October 20, 2008


We will leave for Vietnam in 9 days. two weeks Nate will be with us. We will hopefully get to see him on Sunday for a hour or so. Then, Monday morning we will have our Giving and Receiving. It is really just starting to sink in that we are getting on a plane in just over 1 week! J- and I are both busy getting things done. So much to do.... better get off here and get busy~~

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Our VISA's came this morning! That was the last important piece of paperwork we needed!
Airline tickets-check
Hotel arrangements- check

Things are coming along with the packing. I just hope I can get everything in the suitcase and not be over airlines regulations. We have a bunch of things for the orphanage. We have heard that the children and adults love American chocolates. I have several bags of chocolates. I just need to figure out how to get them there without melting. Any ideas?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy Columbus Day

John was off work for Columbus day and went to eat lunch with Tatertot at school. She was excited! Tonight, we all went for a walk through the field and back. She loves running the length of the field with Lucy (our basset hound). I was carrying "sugar baby". He is a 5# bag of sugar in the baby carrier. I am now ready for the 10# bag. Nate was 17+ pounds in September. I hope to have my back in shape by the time we get to Vietnam. Thanks Lisa for the carrier. It works great!

Tatertot just told me that today was Christopher Columbus Day. "Momma, he sailed on the Nina, Panera, and Santa Claus". How funny!! You can tell where we like to eat lunch.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Travel Approval!

We are scheduled to leave on the October 29th. A week later than we thought, but we are leaving. The Giving and Receiving is scheduled for the 3rd!! Travel arrangements have been booked. We found a great travel agent.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


This is a test run for video. I am trying to get all the technical stuff down before we travel. This is a short clip I took with our camera. Just before taping this, she was singing, "I want my I-600".

Monday, October 6, 2008

The stork is almost ready!!!

The stork is ready for take off (not really, but getting prepared). I've had this picture saved in a file for over a year. I just love this picture. My list of things to do seems to get longer, not shorter. I have really gotten into making bags of goodies for the school aged children at Nathaniel's orphanage. I wish I could do more.
It looks like we are going to check 3 suitcases. If we shop anything like we did in China, we will need the gift suitcase to get everything home.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

almost 4 years ago

It is difficult to realize that it is finally time to pack. It was this time 4 years ago that we were packing for our trip to China. I had no idea what was ahead. Now, four years later it is time to pack again. This time for our trip to Vietnam. Even though we are not first time parents, it won't be the same. There will be new experiences. New challenges. We will be coming home parents of our son that we have waited so long. What a difference 4 years makes.

Thursday, October 2, 2008


When? That is the question. When we will get our Giving and Receiving date? That determines when we will travel. Several families (from another agency) are on their way this weekend to Thanh Hoa. They have a G&R for October 8th. It is amazing to think we should be on our way very soon.

Tatertot and I are going to Build a Bear tomorrow. She is going to make baby brother a bear. I am going to surprise her with a bear that I can record a message and have it placed inside the bear.

Tomorrow is's to getting a call about our Giving and Receiving date!!!