Love Creates a Family, Connected Across the World

Zi, Jana & Seth 12-14-14Not long ago, a young American couple named Jana and Seth lived in a home full of love. Their lives were filled with family, friends, animals and meaning. Something was missing, though: they longed to share their love with a child.

Their journey eventually led them to Zi, a baby boy in an orphanage on the other side of the world. Zi was almost a year old when they met in Nanjing, China in November 2014.

Zi still tickle gameI was entranced ~ watching this family coming together on Facebook ~ at how openly Seth and Jana welcomed Zi into their hearts ~ and vice versa. Though this adoption is both trans-racial and trans-cultural, the three of them seem to be drawn to each other in a web of love and destiny.

Zi filming at home Cropped 7-3-15This match feels meant-to-be.  Zi truly IS their son.  He is thriving, and so is the whole family.

We filmed Zi and his parents at the WNC Nature Center in May 2015, and a few weeks later at home in Asheville, NC. He was 1 ½ years old then.


Watch the video on YouTube: (Be sure it’s in HD for best viewing experience)

You can also watch in Vimeo
, if that’s your preferred platform:

Love Creates a Family, Connected Across the World from Little Pearls on Vimeo.

Zi still with Jana at Nat Center, closeThe lullaby that sets the tone for this Little Pearl was written and performed by both Jana and Seth. They sent it to Zi, so he could hear their voices and feel their love before they were able to travel to China.

Lila Tov means good night in Hebrew. In a re-recording specifically for the Pearl, the Mandarin term for good night (wǎn’ān) was also included, to round out the cultural influences in this family.

Zi still in Seth's arms at home

Lila Tov (adapted):

Wǎn’ān/Goodnight x 3
Sleep tight and just close your eyes

Today you Listened
and you felt
and you smiled
Zi still, close face at homeand you helped
and you played
and you showed someone Love
Lila Tov/Goodnight x 3
Sleep tight and just close your eyes

Now you’re growing
growing up
Zi still with Jana on webyou’ve known laughter
you’ve known luck
and you’ll always know Love

Good night, Wǎn’ān
Lila tov, Good night
Good night, sweet child

Sleep tight and just close your eyes


The Chinese proverb and red thread motion graphic seem a perfect fit for the sense that Zi and his parents were meant to be together, and that their connection is full of serendipity, even destiny:

An invisible red thread connects those who are destined to meet,
regardless of time, place or circumstance.
The thread may stretch or tangle, but it will never break.
Chinese proverb



Here is the rich story of Seth and Jana’s trip to China in November 2014, shot on Jana’s iPhone.  We incorporated some of this footage into the beginning of the Pearl: How We Became A Family – Our Adoption Story


90-second Pearl ~ April 2016

Featuring: Jana, Seth & Zi Kellam

Director/Producer: Linda McLean, Executive & Creative Director, Little Pearls

Photography: Shane Peters

Editing: Shane Peters with Linda McLean

Music: “Lila Tov” – written & performed by Jana & Seth Kellam

China footage: Jana & Seth Kellam

Baby giggles: Zi from his new home, December 2014

Audio Recording: Josh Blake at Echo Mountain Recording Studios, Asheville, NC

Motion Graphics: Robert Klein, Klein DigitalAsheville, NC

Production Assistance & Cameo at the WNC Nature Center: Ayla Peters

Zi still Jana reading book