Thursday, February 25, 2010

Picture for Today: Feb 18 - 23

18th: After school play day.
19th: Daddy refreshes CPR skills.
20th: Scooter fun.
21st: Carpool.
22nd: Projects on the couch.
23rd: Lonely blankie after breakfast.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Accidental Bridesmaid: The Wedding

Today is the day. The wedding is at 3 pm.

We had a lot going on that day, we briefly considered not going to the wedding. But decided to go, there should be at least a few sitting in the audience. We grabbed our two small kids and hopped in a taxi.

Side note: It was over 100 degrees that day.

We arrived.

Hot. Stinky. Sweaty. Wrinkled. Hungry (the baby).

It was past three by the time we arrived. Our plan was to just sneak in the back to show our support.

As we walked into an office to ask where the wedding was, I heard the secretary say:

"Oh the best man and maid of honor are here."

I looked behind me, no one was standing there. Strange.

There was some commotion. I ducked into a small kitchen area to feed the baby. That just made me more...Hot. Stinky. Sweaty. Wrinkled.

A few moments later, the aforementioned secretary lady came running in.

"Hurry! The wedding is just waiting on you!"

"No, don't wait for me" I say "Just go ahead, I'll be right there."

A puzzled look crossed her face.

"But you are the maid of honor!"

A puzzled look crossed my face.

I pulled my hot, stinky, sweaty, wrinkly self together and headed into the room where I was about to be the maid of honor in a wedding.

The wedding began. The bride was beautiful. I stood next to her. I passed her the ring. I signed the marriage certificate. Photos were taken.

All the while I was in khaki carpi pants and a hot, stinky, sweaty, wrinkly white shirt. (Everyone knows you should not wear white to a wedding! What was I thinking?)

To Be Continued...Oprah got involved!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Picture For Today: Feb 12 - 17

12th: New pet, easier than a dog.
13th: Rescue diver training.
14th: Grocery day.
15th: Another merit!
16th: Hot beach day.
17th: Little Red Riding Hood play at school.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Birthday Parties...Enough Said

Don't know if you've ever noticed, but birthday celebrations are filled with many cultural nuances. My son and daughter have been to many parties here - all have been fun and exciting - just like birthday parties should be. Tonight we were at one such celebration at McDonalds. I would like to present to you the birthday party run down. How it all played out and how it struck me really amusing tonight.

invitation comes home in school bag for party the next day at 5 pm

4:15 pm - son and I go to toy store to buy a gift, we debate between a Barbie (called Fulla here) that sings verses from the Koran or a Barbie that comes with a free bracelet, son picks free bracelet one, good choice
4:45 pm - park outside McDonalds and fill out card and wrap gift
5:00 pm - go in, first ones there, mom of party girl on the phone with hubby telling him to buy a cake and candles
5:15 pm - some more kids show up, the other foreigners in sons class are all there by now
5:20 pm - lots of noise and chaos coming from the playland while moms catch up on all the news
5:30 pm - most kids are there
5:45 pm - more chaos coming from playland, kids have figured out how to climb on top of play structure, inside the cage thing-y
6:00 pm - McDonalds lady comes in and organizes a dancing contest, she plays very loud Spanish music that is full of very bad language (in Spanish at least)
6:15 pm - all 25 kids are sat down and food is served
6:20 pm - food is inhaled, more chaos in playland
6:30 pm - loud screaming
6:32 pm - Grimace comes into playland, he is so wide that he knocks down a bunch of chairs and many kids start crying, others see him as a big purple punching bag, so they punch him until Grimace can no longer stand up, many children are crying and running for their lives

6:40 pm - a very large chocolate cake arrives with 8 big candles and the torso of a blond baby doll/girl stuck in the frosting with frosting around her that looks like a wedding dress, sparklers are passed out to children who are all crowding to see the cake, the 8 candles are lit which create huge fireworks/flames jumping into the sky, all 25 kids stick their sparklers into the flame to light their fires, everyone screams and sings, surprisingly no one was injured, playland is now filled with smoke
6:45 pm - chocolate cake is served, it is laced with rose flavoring
6:50 pm - all children are sent home with extra chocolate rose flavored cake and McDonalds toy
6:52 pm - on the way out, another mother invites us to her daughters birthday party on Saturday, the invitation will be in the school bag tomorrow she says
7:00 pm - I smile

Friday, February 12, 2010

Picture for Today: Feb 6 - 11

6th: Sleep-over recovery.
7th: On our way to karate.
8th: Teaching stuffed animal school.
9th: Lunches ready to go.
10th: Family portraits.
11th: ESL Graduation.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Starch Gave Me the Giggles

I was getting ready to iron some shirts today. I got out the supplies - and this hit me funny.

Look at this happy business man whose wife used this great product so his scarf and dress are nice and starched. I was just ironing boring ole' Oxford shirts for my hubby.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Picture for Today

Last year, I changed from traditional scrap booking (with paper and books) to completely digital. I did this for a few reasons:
1. I was sick of moving all my scrap book junk around the world over and over again. It weighs too much and took up too much precious room in our very limited luggage allowance.
2. I don't have a ton of room in our apartment to drag that stuff out all the time.
3. I love playing around in Photoshop and found a great scrap booking software that uses all the great features of Photoshop plus more!

Well, this year I've decided to try a totally new way of documenting our lives. I have been taking a picture a day that shows a glimpse of what our day was like. Over the year, I hope the book will be a good history of what our family was up to. And I may become a better photographer in the process!

Here is a sample of what we were up to in January:

13th: Beads made at Handicraft program.
14th: Dog hotel for a few weeks.
15th: Time for bed.
16th: Late Christmas gift arrival.
17th: Homework.
18th: Big storm.

25th: Arabic tutoring.
26th: Bedtime story.
27th: School project.
28th: Kindergarten kids threw principal into pool.
29th: Mom is out for the count.
30th: Happy Birthday pizza for mom.

And last week:
31st: Mom still suffers.
1st: Webkinz.
2nd: Valentine decor.
3rd: Craft cupboard explosion.
4th: Family camping night.
5th: Traditional pancake morning.

Here is to enjoying what TODAY brings!

Accidental Bridesmaid

Since I recently wrote on the topic of marriage, I think it is time to share a classic story from the archives. Sit back, grab a warm drink, this is doozie.

March 2004
We arrived in the Middle East.

June 2004
We settled in our apartment and found a nice church to attend. One day (the day that will live in infamy) that seemed like a normal Sunday to us, we made our way to services.

I always sat in the back because my baby girl was, well, a baby. It was a small room, and anytime she decided to make her presence know, I slipped out the back door. The service was in Arabic, so I tried my hardest to pick out the hand full of words that I knew. Otherwise, I people watched.

Confession: I do a lot of people watching. Even in church. Don't judge me.

This particular day, I noticed a tall, young, nice looking American guy sitting with an Arab family. I was curious. I did what any other curious person would do. After the service ended, I walked up to him and said. "Are you an American?"

This started the adventure.

He explained he had just arrived from the States. He was a serviceman, was stationed in Iraq, fell in love with an Iraqi gal there, went back to the States, finished his duties, came back to get her out of Iraq, marry her and take her home.

A normal conversation you would have in the 'meet and greet' after church? See? People watching is FUN!

I thought he seemed a little flustered, lonely, etc, so I did what any nice motherly person would do and asked them if they wanted to have lunch with us.

He said he needed to talk to the pastor about their wedding arrangements, then would join us for lunch.

July 2004
We saw them quite a bit after that. They (and her father) were staying in an extended stay hotel right around the corner from our house. We had them over often, helped them when we could and just offered encouragement as they were wading through the paperwork of trying to get married so she could get her permission to move to the States.

They were really very sweet and cute. He could communicate a bit in Arabic, she a bit in English. You could see they loved each other deeply and had big hopes and dreams together.

August 2004
We received a phone call from them that everything was set. They were getting married that week and would love for us to come. He called a few days later and said:

Today is the day. The wedding is at 3 pm.

To Be Continued...