Cindy Hsu is a familiar face to many New Yorkers. Since 1993, she's been chronicling the triumphs, tragedies and everyday tales of the metropolitan area as an anchor and reporter for CBS 2 News. Offscreen, she's the mother of Rosie, 7, whom Cindy adopted from China at 11 months old, a story she told in an Emmy-nominated broadcast feature, Bringing Rosie Home. The Hsus live on the Upper West Side.
Does Rosie ever visit you in the newsroom?
CH She comes with me on Saturday mornings and sits quietly at the desk next to mine and naps in one of the offices. On weekends I anchor all the shows—6am, 9am, 6pm and 11pm—so I go to work at four in the morning. She knows everyone in the newsroom.
RH It's really fun. I have a friend there named Catherine and I play computers games with her. She's a grown-up.
CH I have very strict rules for Rosie when she's there. She's not allowed in the studio when we're on the air, and she can't distract any of the workers by running around and being noisy.
How do you balance parenting with your busy work life?
CH It's a juggle. She sleeps at other people's homes on Saturday and Sunday nights. The coolest thing is that my friends in the area are our extended family. They all kind of went on the adoption journey with me—filling out the paperwork, seeing her picture for the first time—and really pitch in. There's another single parent in our building who takes Rosie almost every Sunday night. I honestly wouldn't be able to do it without her.
Are you teaching Rosie about her Chinese heritage?
CH I don't speak Chinese, though I tried to learn it when I was younger. Rosie takes it as an after-school program at her school. It's only once a week, but I'm hopeful!
How's it going getting ready for the new school year?
CH Honestly, I have to try and remember when the first day of school is! I'm so unorganized. Rosie is much more responsible—she often reminds me of things.
RH I do. I help her remember the names of people and restaurants.
CH We're very lucky that we found each other. She helps me navigate life.
Rosie, do your friends know that your mom is on television?
RH She actually came to my class once and said she was a reporter. She even brought some video so we could see her. My friends thought it was cool.
Do you think you'd want to be a reporter when you grow up?
RH No! I don't like to wake up really early.
"We're big fans of City Diner (2441 Broadway at 90th St, 212-877-2720), which is open 24 hours a day. It's so comfortable and, unlike other places, there's never a big line for brunch. Rosie usually orders French fries and scrambled eggs."
"We absolutely love Chinatown! We would eat dim sum every single day if we could—we like the places where there are a million things you can get off carts, like the Golden Unicorn (18 East Broadway at Catherine St, 212-941-0911)."
"I like the personal neighborhood feel of West Side Kids (498 Amsterdam Ave at 84th St, 212-496-7282). The folks who work there are wonderful at helping you find the right toy for the child you're shopping for—especially when it's a last-minute birthday gift!"
"The Museum of Chinese in America (215 Centre St between Grand and Howard Sts; 212-619-4785, mocanyc.org) has lots of family workshops and programs, and cool exhibits like a re-created Chinatown shop from years ago."
"Modern Martial Arts (215 W 76th St between Broadway and Amsterdam Ave; 212-721-2240, 4blackbelt.com) is great for confidence building. Rosie's been taking classes there for three years. She just earned her blue belt!"
"Emack & Bolio's (389 Amsterdam Ave between 78th and 79th Sts; 212-362-2747, emackandbolios.com) is an ice cream place that's open late and has unusual flavors. I get chocolate and peanut butter but Rosie likes plain old vanilla. It's really good."