Party in Ko Lanta

At long last, visitors! 

IMG_2065Party time with our cousins and siblings. 

IMG_2101Ladyboys singing Happy Birthday to Brienne. Easily the best birthday song of all time.

IMG_2092Men.

IMG_2116Fay & Ollie were best friends. 

IMG_2128These two loved playing on the dive boat. 

IMG_2135 These moms deserve an award. 
IMG_2137Brienne & Kelsey at the dive site. Beautiful people. 

IMG_2171Fay struts her stuff on our way to dinner.

IMG_2159Klong Dao: hard to beat the beaches on Ko Lanta.

IMG_2146A rare moment of tranquility.

IMG_2144Fay dead asleep in the middle of the ocean.

IMG_2080Happy babies= happy parents.

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Visitors gone. They left us too soon! 

Visitors: The stars aligned and a few of our favorite people came to visit! We would like to publicly thank Brienne & Kelsey (Ty’s cousins) and Kara (Ty’s sister), Taylor, and Ollie for making this week an absolute blast. We can’t even begin to describe just how good it was to share this experience and spend time with family. We love you guys! We regret we didn’t take more pictures; too much fun talking and playing.  

Highlights: 

1. Cramming all 8 of us into a truck and exploring the island.

2. Dinner at the beach every night. 

3.  All day dive trip to Ko Haa.

4. Relaxing at some of the best beaches in Thailand. 

5. Brienne’s birthday dinner. She will never receive a birthday song of this caliber again.

Fay & Ollie: Fay was quite excited to see her cousin Ollie after all this time apart. She treated him like gold, except she always tried to pull the long blonde locks out of his head. Must be Hair Envy. Ollie is just the happiest baby on the planet, so he loved playing with Fay and anyone else who wanted to say hello. We loved the fact that Ollie was a source of entertainment for Fay. We also LOVED Kara & Taylor’s Christmas present to us: A night of babysitting Fay. This allowed us to go out to eat by ourselves for the first time since September. Pure bliss. 

Ko Lanta: Ko Lanta is a refreshingly family-oriented island, and is home to some of the best beaches in all the land. We’ve never seen so much sand. Klong Dao was the perfect beach for Fay: huge and flat with a long, gentle slope into the ocean. She could run around in circles on this beach for hours. Ko Lanta is the best place we’ve stayed for complete relaxation. It became everyone’s vacation within a vacation, since we’ve all been on overdrive trying to see everything over the last few weeks. It felt great to just sit back and drink coconut shakes on the beach with our family. Life is good. 

Fay

We’ve received requests for more pictures. Here are a few NEVER BEFORE SEEN pictures from the last 75 days.

IMG_1096 Just chillin’ in Pai
IMG_1070 Testing the waters.
IMG_1060New pants. 

IMG_1030Decides to be happy after a small meltdown.

IMG_0742We’re losing hair because of this.

IMG_0785Getting to know Boon.

IMG_0821Surveying lunch. Yes, we ended up buying that shirt.

IMG_0869Warming up to her new friends.

IMG_0718New hand sign. Not sure what it means yet.

IMG_0639 IMG_0627Rockin’ out. 

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IMG_1727Comparing hairstyles. 

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See you guys later! 

Fay: She is so dang cute. You can begin babysitting January 10th. Please. 

Fay’s Cambodian Birthday

An Urgent Matter (PLEASE READ!!!!) : Dear readers, as many of you know we are trying to stick it to the man by entering a ski bum contest. We think the video is pretty hilarious, well worth the watch. Part of the judging process is the public vote, which ends on December 8th.  We would be extremely grateful for your votes! Click here to watch the video and vote! (You can vote once per day on all of your devices)

Ok, so now that you’ve voted for us, we’ll get back to the good stuff.

We took Fay to Cambodia for her birthday.

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First we went swimming.

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A rare moment of cuddling as Fay warms up after the cold swim.
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We had a great time celebrating Fay’s 1st birthday.
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Our wonderful friends Nik & Amy gave Fay the cutest dress of all time.
Fay: Fay is our favorite child. We’re still struggling to believe she has been alive for an entire year. As she continues to grow and develop, we now know one thing for certain: Fay loves being free. Holding Fay is now a privilege only to be had by the elite, AKA Sloane. She’s like, so over her Dad right now. Really though, Fay is cuter than ever and we love her more and more each day.
As our travels continue, Fay has made some amazing progress wearing down her parents. Sometimes we are not sure she is human. She speaks in a strange tongue and exhibits animalistic behavor as she runs around terrorizing her surroundings.  Because Fay can literally run these days, she’s been getting into quite a bit more trouble. But we won’t talk about that here.  We now go to bed at 9pm in order to receive the rest we need to survive another day. 
Cambodia: Much more to come on Cambodia. We will say this: Cambodia has won our hearts. So much so that Ty won’t stop talking about starting a travel tour company that only visits Cambodia. It’s that good.

Daily Life in Chiang Mai

Our time in Chiang Mai has come to end. Here’s a glimpse into the day-to-day over the past month.

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 Fay loves riding in the Songthaews ( little red trucks with seats in the bed)

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Street food is delicious. 

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Main form of transport for the month. 
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Fay’s feet look like this at the end of every single day. 

IMG_1009 We call her Gollum when she’s not behaving.

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Fay’s toys.

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Just chatting away with the cute old ladies at church. 

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Sorry about the pews…didn’t see that one coming.

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The best food joints look like this. Not sure what Sloane and Fay are up to.

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Real Thai dinner with our friend Pern.

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Locals taking pictures of Fay on the go.

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Happy Movember.

Sunday: We go to church on Sundays. The branch we attend is wonderful. It has about 100 active members, and most of them are local.  We do have a small handful of English-speaking expats, which means we get our own English-speaking Sunday school. Fay is now completely impossible to contain. Luckily, the nursery leaders just take her away during Sunday school. She usually lasts anywhere from 20-40 minutes, at which point we begin to hear her terrifying screams echoing down the church halls. We cherish those 20-40 minutes. After church, we continue to seek after truth by visiting the dozens of Buddhist temples dotting the city.  Then we break the sabbath and go out to eat. Cut us some slack, we only have a mini-fridge. 

The Rest of the Week: Ty has been putting in quite a bit of work during the week.  He’s been spending most of his time getting his current business ready for Christmas and planning for 2014. He’s really enjoyed strategizing and coming up with new ideas with Austin (his amazing business partner)  via email and Skype. He’s excited for what lies ahead, even though he has no idea what that might be. The rest of his time is spent networking with other entrepreneurs and researching new business opportunities. 

So what does Sloane do when Ty is working? All you mothers out there already know the answer. It’s a miracle Fay is still alive, and that miracle comes daily in the form of Sloane. In addition to keeping Fay happy and alive, Sloane has become quite the explorer. She can usually be found perusing far-reaching botanical gardens, wandering specialty markets, and learning about the local handicrafts. 

Food: Food holds a special place in our hearts. We go out to eat for nearly every meal and we are very grateful that the food is cheap enough here to pull that off. We were especially excited to eat an authentic Thai dinner at Pern’s place…until they made Ty eat raw shrimp and strips of pig skin. Afterward, they turned to Sloane and said, ‘maybe you shouldn’t eat any of the raw food, we don’t want you to get sick’. Nice. Since we couldn’t show up empty-handed, Sloane made an american classic for our Thai friends: Rice Krispie Treats.  They were a big hit. 


Digital Nomads: From Krabi to Bangkok

It’s been a week of transition. We’ve gone from the beaches of Ko Phi Phi to the small town of Krabi.  (Fay and Sloane are healthy again thank goodness). Then from Krabi to Bangkok, and onward to Chiang Mai.

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The night market in Krabi.  We ate all sorts of new things. Delicious, cheap food. 10 baht chicken skewers are hard to beat.

IMG_0485We wandered around Krabi for about 20 minutes before we found this little gem of a hotel. It was cheap, clean, and Fay found a new best friend. Every time we passed through Krabi we stayed here so she could play with Nishah.

IMG_0445Getting ready to hike to a wat on top of a mountain. Imagine Christian Bale in ‘Batman Begins’ heading up to the league of shadows temple thinger. But in blazing heat and humidity, and no ninja training up top.

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Unnaturally tall steps. They said it would be fun, they said.

IMG_04621,273 steps and 2,000 vertical feet later, Fay declares victory. It wasn’t easy, but she persevered.

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Still gloating at her accomplishments.

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Are we allowed to ring the bells? Fay says yes.

Change: Our transformation has begun. Our clothes smell like Asia, and Ty has discovered he now sweats curry. Not sure if it’s Panang or Green…but definitely curry. We’ve adjusted to the smells, the busy streets, and we don’t get stressed out when Thai women take Fay away while we eat dinner. Ty is even working on his Asian beard (beard is a loose term here, you all know Ty can’t grow facial hair). Ty insists that his Asian beard is leaps and bounds better than his Jerusalem mustache.  We’d show you a picture, but Ty is begging for more time in hopes that you will actually be able to see the beard in the photo.

DCBKK Conference: Ty dragged Sloane and Fay back to the bustling city of Bangkok for three days so he could attend a business conference. He really enjoyed listening to, and being surrounded by, other crazy digital nomads.  All of the attendees were internet entrepreneurs, and most are living somewhere in Southeast Asia.  Fun to know that there are thousands of other people building their businesses while traveling the world.

Fay Update: Fay is walking like a champ. We are so excited…sort of. Now she can climb up and walk off beds, stumble off curbs, run away while we’re eating, and clip her face on sharp corners of chairs. But, we count the walking as the positive progress that it is.

Moving on to Fay’s teeth. For about 5 months now, people have been asking us if Fay is teething. We suppose this is the polite thing to ask when someone sees an irritable, crying child.  Too bad she didn’t cut her first tooth until last month. Last week we discovered she is working on five new ones at the same time. Now, there is no question on anyone’s mind. Fay is teething. These are dark times.

How to Travel with an Infant: Part 1

We have loved spending time with Fay in Thailand.  She loves it here, and the people love her too. Bringing a baby is a great way to strike up conversation and get to know all the wonderful people here, tourists and locals alike.  Experiencing the world as a family is an incredibly enriching experience. We highly recommend it.

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Life is a lot more fun when you stop worrying about dirt, sand, water, poop, pee, and the list goes on….

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Breastfeeding. Get used to nursing in public.  With so much out and about time, it has been pretty much mandatory for Fay. Although Thai women don’t breastfeed in public, we haven’t experienced any negativity when Sloane nurses Fay.  This is probably the most interesting place Fay nursed.  If you want to learn more, you can wikipedia Phra Nang Cave. WARNING: Image not suitable for youngsters…or the immature.

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We love it when other people hold Fay. Particularly during meal times.

Travel Tips for Infants:

We won’t pretend it’s a walk in the park every day.  At the time of writing, we are on a ferry and Fay is fighting her naptime.  It also looks like she is trying to grow some buck teeth. This is bad news for the other 50 people on our boat.

Here are some tips to making life a little easier:

1)   Beco Carrier. If we could only bring one thing for Fay, this is it. We use this daily to tote Fay around. It works like a charm. Light, relatively compact, and pretty comfortable to wear.  Using a carrier is the only way to go in our opinion.   Don’t even think about a stroller.

2)   Buy a Peapod. Imagine a miniature tent just big enough for your baby to sit up in. It is small, lightweight, and very compact.  Once we zip Fay inside, we don’t have to worry about bugs, mosquitoes, or choking hazards. This is where she sleeps every night. Tip: don’t set it near any ledges; Fay has been trying to barrel roll the whole tent when grumpy.

3)   Request the bulkhead seats on the airplane.  Did you know you can attach a bassinet to the bulkhead?  Probably more ideal for babies under 10 months, but either way you have more legroom, and you’re ideally located near the bathrooms and emergency exits. This means plenty of room to walk around and let the little one go wild.

4)   Speaking of planes, arrive a little bit early to the airport.  Not sure what other airlines do, but for whatever reason Delta has to check you in manually when traveling with an infant. They also have to charge you additional hidden fees/taxes for the child (amounted to $95 for us). Don’t ask why, but it took the Delta agent 15 minutes to get this all sorted out.

5)   Don’t overly stress about cleanliness.  We learned early on that Fay cannot be contained. Let’s just hope we’re helping her gain strong immunities to Asian germs.

6)   Snacks are a good way to help keep the peace. We really like the fruit melts by Gerber.  Tasty treat for both child and parents.

7)   Develop patience.  We’re serious about this one. It’s probably the most important tip of all time.  Wish we knew how to help you (and us) on this one.

We are still learning as we go. If you have any other tips, ideas, or suggestions, please let us know! Anticipate another one of these posts near the end of our journey.

Wat Pho Statue

We Made It.

The adventure has begun.

Baby Traveling to Thailand

SLC. Fresh as a daisy.

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Tokyo. Not so fresh anymore.

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Tuk Tuk ride. Fay likes the feel of the wind in her bow.

Wat Bangkok

Wat in Bangkok

Wat Pho Bangkok

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Wat Pho 

sleeping buddha wat pho

Buddha

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One day in Bangkok is plenty of time. Headed South. 

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Fay is  really diggin the view. 

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The View. 

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We think we’ll settle down here for a little bit.

Fay Update: We are proud to announce that she is still alive.  She’s had her moments, but overall she’s done quite well.  Her constantly changing surroundings have pushed her into hyperdrive, which adds a nice level of stress to our otherwise unencumbered lives.  Ever since she took a record 12 steps in the airport the other day, she’s decided she wants to try running.  It never turns out well. She also started climbing in our Bangkok hotel; she may have broken the room phone as a result.  And yes, the rumor that Thai people love babies is absolutely true. Fay is now a celebrity; everyone follows her around and she even has paparazzi issues to deal with (we’ve counted about 6 people who have taken a picture of her so far).

Bangkok: One day is about all you need here.  The highlight of our day in this mess of a city was Wat Pho. The most exciting part of the day in Bangkok was Fay pooping all over Herself, Ty, Sloane and the Taxi. The most stressful part of the day was being stranded in the outskirts of Bangkok in torrential rains for 45 minutes. Apparently rush hour + monsoon = no taxis. Good to know. 

Today is Day 4 and we are now in our third hotel (technically bungalow). We’ve used planes, trains, automobiles, tuk tuks, and boats to get to our current location.  We are exhausted and sore. To alleviate our pain and suffering, we’ve both gotten foot massages and Thai massages.  Feeling much better now. 

This is great.

Travel Prep: Gearing up for Thailand

Our little family is headed to Thailand for 3 months.

We’ve had a lot of fun preparing for our journey/walkabout/adventure/vacation/whatever-you-want-to-call-it.

Everybody wants to know why we are going.  Sorry, but we don’t know the ‘why’ just yet. We just know that it will be a good experience! If you think we are crazy, we take that as a compliment. To honor you, we decided to get crazy haircuts:

Sloane chopped off all her hair:

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Ty got a mohawk. He wants to call his new look ‘Breaking Bad’:

Ty's Mohawk

This is what we are bringing:

Travel Packs

We’ve come up with three family rules for our trip. Trying to break some poor habits. 

1) No rush (Ty has a patience problem)

2) No TV 

3) Get off the electronics! (Exceptions: Ty’s work, Communication, ‘Journaling’ on our blog)

Why we are keeping a blog:

1) Friends & Family have requested

2) It forces us to Journal

3) Provide useful info for little families seeking adventure in SE Asia

4) Convince you to come visit us

Wish us luck. 26 hrs. of travel time with Fay is extremely frightening. Peace out.