"Take an action each day that alleviates suffering in the world. Bring light into darkness."
-Angeles Arrien

Here is the test to find whether your mission on earth is finished:
If you're alive, it isn't.
--- Richard Bach

I have come to realize more and more that the greatest disease and the greatest suffering is to be unwanted, unloved, uncared for, to be shunned by everybody, to be just nobody [to no one]
--Mother Teresa

We were not separated at your birth.
It was the moment at which we began our journey toward each other
-Nancy McGuire Roche

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

We are home!!!

Well the flight from Hell is finally over and we are home safe and sound in our cozy home. We were thrilled to see our family and they were thrilled to see us and the new arrivals. The babies took to everyone and were on their best behaviors even with the time change and jetlag. We are so happy to be able to start our life as a family of seven. We missed our 3 older children so much. A month was way to long to be away from them.

It is so strange to leave Hanoi and return to the US after almost a month. It gives you a whole new perspective on your life. I am somehow humbled by the whole experience. I wonder if some of you BTDT have also felt this way?

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Leaving Vietnam

All 3 Lang son families are leaving Hanoi today. Rich's flight leaves in the afternoon and it seems Kent switched to our new flight this evening.We are very lucky to have been able to catch flights out before the Holiday rush. The babies have all grown so much in the past few weeks and all seem to be attaching well.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Hanoi Vietnam November 1st

Our Angels

Sweet as an angel when he is sleeping! Problem is getting him to sleep.

Our beautiful Meliah!

Cutest little bunny!

Do we look like TWINS??

Yes Mommy, I am sharing my toys with Sissy!!

Visa approval

Well good news, All Lang son babies got approved for their Visas today. This is a relief. Bad news is our flight was scheduled for tonight but the embassy refused to expedite our Visa so we could get home to our other 3 children waiting at home. This was very disappointing but really about what I expected from the embassy. They sure don't seem to go the extra mile for us adoptive parents. It did not really phase them we could be stuck here an extra week because of flights being booked because of the Holiday next week (Costing us a couple of thousand dollars extra). Is it so much to ask for a little compassion? I guess so when we are dealing with the US government.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Monday, November 12, 2007

Introducing Khai Baylen Nguyen Thompson and Meliah Oriana Tran Thompson

We are so busy with our excursions and both the babies that I find it very hard to blog on a consistent basis. When they go to bed between 7-8:30 I fall into bed soon after. I know (GASP) hard for you that know this night owl to believe. While I was waiting on the children I would have to force myself to sleep at 3:00 in the morning. They have cured me of that. They are finally both napping at the same time, on day #13, so I stole a second.

Sunday for about 4 hours we toured The Museum Of Ethnology Museum. (http://www.vme-org.vn/) Something to put on your to do list. They had the actual Khin and Tay (Both my children's ethnicity) houses rebuilt on sight. The children were absolutely beautifully behaved. Today we did the The Temple Of Literature. Beautiful buildings, Lilly pad ponds and gardens. They did wonderfully today too. Vietnamese people stop us and want to know how long we have had them. They are so surprised the children are so comfortable with us in less then 2 weeks. The people actually stop us and take pictures of our son. They tell us he is very handsome by Vietnamese standards. Both the children will draw a crowd almost anywhere we go. Today I saw this crowd swarming around the benches and wondered what was going on. Only to find Mark and our Daughter at the center of the crowd of 15-20 people. Him answering all kinds of questions about our children. Now I know what the animals on display at the zoo feel like. I never expected this kind of attention. I only wonder what kind of attention we will draw back in the states? I can not imagine it will be more then this.

Saturday we finished up our shopping for the donations from the fundraiser. It was a shopping trip from hell. We went across town to humongous mall with a Big C. Kind of like a knock off Walmart. We drew such a crowd we could not walk down the isles. I filled 2 baskets with all kinds of goodies for the babies back at the orphanage. Here is my list:
- Baby Walker
-5 baby Bunting sleeping Bags
-4 Head pillows
-6 Sweaters with matching booties and hats
-4 Button up sweaters
-5 winter Hats
-6 Fleece Pant and shirt sets
-4 puzzle Mats
-3 Large Boxes of Infant rattle toys
-Many bags of Balls,Toys, Rattles
-4 XL Johnson's Head to toe wash
-5 Prickly Heat Johnson's powder
-5 XL Johnson's Baby shampoo
-3 XL Johnson's Baby Bath
-3 XL Johnson's Baby soft wash
-4 L Johnson's Baby powder
-2 XL Johnson's Baby Powder Blossom
-3 Large Washcloths
-5 Johnson's Baby Deet free Anti Mosquito Lotion

Officially we have decided on names for the children. We have been calling him Tai (TY) up until now because he responds to his name and he has had a little bit harder time adjusting. Luckily one of our picks is surprisingly close to his birth name. We would like to introduce Khai (Ka-EYE) Baylen Nuygen Thompson and Meliah (Ma-LEE-ah) Oriana Tran Thompson. Quite a mouth full. We incorporated both their Vietnamese last names as a second middle name. Since they are both relinquished we thought this would be a nice way to honor their birth families. I can not express in words how very honored we are to welcome Khai and Meliah to our family. They have grown in our hearts over these past months but they are now finally part of our family forever. We can't wait to introduce them to their brother and sister's waiting at home.

Khai is a male name with
Vietnamese origins.

-Emperor Khải Định (啟定) (Nguyen Buu Dao) was the 12th Emperor of the Nguyen Dynasty in Vietnam.

-Phan Văn Khải (born December 25, 1933) is a former prime minister of Vietnam. According to Vietnamese custom, this person properly should be referred to by the given name Khải. He was elected to the position on September 24, 1997, and was re-elected in August 2002. On June 24, 2006, he announced his resignation

Kai is also a
Hmong male name that is sometimes spelt "Khai".

-In Hawaiian, Kai means ocean or great water. The sea.
-In Latin, Kai is rooted in the word Gaius, which means earth.
-In Welsh and Scottish, Kai means "Keeper of the Keys", after Sir Kay, from King Aurthur's Knights of the Round Table


Meliah or Malia means peaceful and calm,gentle waters.. It is of Hawaiian origin.


Means "from the east" or "sunrise"

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Thursday November 8th

First set of donations for orphanage donated by Magazine Fundraiser

As you all know I decided to take my blog private. I was reading the Embassy statement about increased NOIDS on Adoption Integrity and the Embassy mentioned PAPS BLOGS. It gave me a unsettled feeling to think about the possibility that the embassy could be following our blogs. With all my paperwork problems I decided it was better to play it safe.

We headed to the big mall here because I wanted to go shopping for my fundraiser donations. I am so glad I decided to bring the money to Vietnam and shop here. The money goes so much farther and I did not have to mess with transporting the items overseas. I am happy with my first purchases. I got 5 sweaters, 20 pull on pants, 25 button up shirts and 5 winter hats. I hope to clear the citimart out of baby bath, lotion and shampoo tomorrow.

We went on our daily evening constitutional tonight. One goes in Mark's backpack and the other in my front pack. Like I said we were invisible before on the streets of Hanoi until the babies came along. 2 babies must be very rare and very lucky. People here make such a big deal about 2 babies. They want to touch us and the babies. Makes you feel like a celebrity. We got lost on or evening walk. Mark took us down a back alley and for about an hour we got lost in these residential back alley ways. I thought we would never find our way out of these mazes. We walked until way past dark. Imagine us, 2 Americans with babies strapped to them walking down these thin alley ways where foreigners are probably ever rarely seen. We actually caused a traffic jam. They were running out of their houses to see us. Kind of interesting to see how the people really live. Not the part of town the tour guide would bring you to.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Wed November 7th- Passport & SOS clinic

Got babies passports today. SOS clinic checkup was today. No wonder it feels like I am lifting 35 pounds because I am. She is 17 lbs and he is 18 lbs. DR said very good size for 7 months. He only had world growth chart not Vietnamese and he said they are both 50 percentile for the world. He kept asking if we were sure about our sons birth date. He was born in the hospital and relinquished so we are sure. DR was very surprised how advanced he was. He was surprised he could sit unassisted and crawled. Very unusual for baby institutionalized for 7 months. He was also surprised our daughter could sit unassisted. A week ago she barely could but we have been working on it. They are both very intelligent babies. Our son was so steaming mad during the checkup. He screamed. They kept asking if he was hungry. They always think baby is hungry if they fuss at all. No he is just pissed off. You should see him at night time. He has quite the temper when he is not getting exactly what he wants. She was a little angel. Not one whimper or tear. He has been vaccinated and she has not. Weird for being in the same orphanage and being the same age. He has the vaccination scar . I wonder how they decide which kids to vaccinate or not?

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Tuesday November 6th

Embassy Interview

Another busy day. I am so glad to have this first embassy interview behind us. I was of course a basket of nerves and we ended up being second to last. I expected some grumpy old mean embassy guy but it was really a pretty young girl behind 2 inches of glass. She was nice enough but I knew she held the fate of our family in her hands. I was told to keep my answers short and to the topic. That I did. Here are some of the questions that the embassy asked while I remember them-

-When did we arrive in Vietnam?
- What day was our G&R?
-How long was the trip to Lang son?
-When was our referral date?
- Was the day of G&R first time I saw both babies?
-Did I see referral pictures of these babies with my referral?
-Was referral first time I heard of these babies?
- How much of the orphanage did I see and to describe it?
-Did I see other babies or babies rooms at the orphanage?
- Did I ask to see other babies?
- Was I told the circumstances of my children's relinquishment?
-What exactly was I told about each child's situation?
-Did The birth parents attend the G&R ceremony?
- Did the birth parents speak to me?
-What did they say?
-How did my Daughters birth father act when we met him?

She said it was good that both sets of birth parents attended the G&R because this showed they were aware the children were being given up for adoption. This is good. She pretty much said it should be 4-6 days if they do not investigate but again she said the birth parents attending was a good sign. I am pretty relived. All the appointments out of Lang son went well.

Unfortunately the other families with us from the other province were pretty much told they are going to be investigated. They are the first family from this province and all 4 children were abandoned within a week of each other. They said the officer said this threw up a few red flags. I wish them the best of luck. I know this is a very hard position to be in.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Monday November 5th In Hanoi- Lucky Turtle

Our sunshine!!!

Waiter at restaurant. They love Babies!!

Our Grumpy Head!!

We had a busy day today. We have finally braved going out with the babies. Sunday was our first real outing to the ceramic village. It was really beautiful stuff. We spent $170 mostly on tea sets. Was nice to see the other families we have not seen since the G&R. It seems the babies from Lang son were a lot better cared for then the babies from Bach Ninh. Bach Ninh babies had scabies, abscesses and respiratory infections. Only our son from Lang son had an ear infection. All theWC babies are adorable .

Babies get up at 5:00 to start their day. We have been taking long walks around Hanoi everyday with the babies. Today we headed out with our carriers. I have been looking for lantern street. I want to hang different color and shape silk lanterns above the babies crib at home. I found about 8 beautiful silk lanterns in many deep colors. I am thrilled about my purchase from my children's birth country. A little something to remind us all of Vietnam.

We then walked home past the lake from Lantern street. There was a big fuss at Lake by the temple. Crowds of people and motor bikes stopped everywhere. Police were trying to control traffic. We noticed everybody pointing over towards the temple in the center of the lake. Finally we realized there was a humongous turtle beached in the grass around the temple. This supposedly is a very rare sight. Mark read online they have not spotted a turtle in those waters since 2002. It was obviously a very huge deal. We took some pictures but not sure if you can tell it is a turtle. Will post later.

We have our USCIS interview tomorrow. I am very nervous after hearing about more NOIDS issued lately. This time to relinquished families. I have decided worrying is not going to change the outcome so I am trying to stay in good spirits. Wish us luck. We really will be devastated if anybody try's to separate our new little family.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Daddy's Girl and Boy. Aren't they cute?

Out for our evening constitutional in Hanoi.
Look at matching outfits. Daddy's Girl and Boy

Holding Hands

Saturday, November 03, 2007


Today was a good day. A lot of you are probably wondering about names. Right? Well they already know their Vietnamese name. We want to change them but are not sure how they will adjust. Reminds me of a story about our dog. When we got her she was 3 months old and HER name was Larry. Yes a girl named Larry. It was a family tradition. Her mother and grandmother were both named Larry. We tried to change it but she would not respond. So now 17 years later we still have a GIRL dog named Larry.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Still alive

I just wrote a LONG post and it disappeared. Not what I need with such limited time.

We finally have the babies on the same eating schedule but not sleeping. They are still waking 2-3 times at night to eat. They eat a lot. They are little piggies.

They got up today at 5:00 Am ready to go. We are all getting used to each other. We decided to head out for a walk to find a little bakery. They really like the double stroller. They kind of zone out in it. It is fine on the streets near the Hotel and early in the morning. We were out before the shops opened or the street vendors were all over the place. It was nice to get out and walk. We ended up at the Melia Hotel to eat. We had our first experience with someone just taking the baby out of our arms. The waitress really liked our son and just walked over and took him right out of my arms. She stayed within our sight but I did not like it. He really likes the Vietnamese ladies. I think they remind him of his birth mother. The language is also familiar to him. When we were heading back to the hotel a flock of older women surrounded us. I thought they were going to yank the pacifier out of our daughters mouth. They cooed over the babies and tried to take them out but they were strapped in the stroller. As we went to leave the one women leaned down and kissed our son right on the mouth. I freaked out. I have no idea where her mouth has been and she had a mouth full of rotten teeth. It was disgusting but there is nothing I could do. Why do people feel they have the right to touch them? This incident makes me never want to leave the hotel again.

They babies are really starting to bond with us. My daughter looks at me with the most adoring eyes. They are filled with love. It melts my heart. She is a perfect little happy girl. My son is onary(SP). He has a VERY strong personality. When he is happy he is all smiles and personality. When he is upset you will know and he demands all your attention right away. He will not fall asleep by drinking a bottle. I have to swaddle him in the Moby carrier and walk the floors for hours. He will usually wake up when you try to lay him down. He seems to be a little less fussy today with the switch in formula. He picks on his sister. He will take the pacifier right out of her mouth or bop her on the head. She is so sweet and just adores him.

They both reached for me today when Mark had them and they got upset or hurt. That was such a great feeling that they are looking to me for comfort. We can just not get over the fact that these 2 perfect kids are ours forever and ever. We love them so much. I can not imagine life without them. How did we ever get so lucky???

Our first embassy appointment is on Tuesday the 6th. A little later then we hoped for. Sos clinic and passport on Wednesday.