Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Our Daily "Hotel" Life in Al Ain

Time to play has been a little over a week since my last post.

Mon., Feb. 10 - The kids and I got up early, had breakfast, and then headed out to a friend's place to do some laundry. One of the many wonderful things about being an expat in the UAE is you have an instant circle of friends! We are all living in a foreign country so we band together to help each other out and help each other learn about this amazing country we are in. Being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) we are used to this type of instant "family" within our Church and it is even stronger here! While I was doing laundry and visiting with my friend our children had a great time playing together! Then she surprised us by taking us to a local mall and out to lunch at Papa John's! This was also hubby's first day at his new job! is going to be much harder than we thought BUT we still feel this is where we are supposed to be and that all the pros will outweigh the difficulty of the job. Let's just say that 6th grade Arab boys aren't any better behaved than 6th grade boys in the US of A!

Tues., Feb. 11 - After another wonderful breakfast, the kids did some school work and then we checked out the pools (yes, plural, as in 3 pools)! They had a blast! After swimming, we ran everyone through the showers and Unicorn got ready for the Church Youth Activity...they played ping-pong and then cleaned the church building (a rather large Villa). Today hubby had to fill in for a math teacher that was gone to training. He said the day flew by but that he felt like he was thrown to the wolves! He is glad he gets to shadow the other teacher for a couple more days!

Can you see Ladybug? She is getting ready to go down the water slide!
Wed., Feb. 12 - One of these days I need to remember to take my camera to breakfast as it is quite the spread! After breakfast the kids did their schoolwork and we headed out to the mall. We signed the kids up for ice skating lessons, bought a flat iron, and tried to find some jeans for me (I have lost 5 pounds since we got here and my jeans don't fit anymore) and failed. On Wednesdays (and Mondays), hubby has professional development after school so he is home a bit later than usual.
Ladybug school (with a Monkey in the mirror)
Monkey School
Unicorn School ?!? (looks uncomfortable to me)!
Thurs., Feb. 13 - Thursday is the new Friday! Yippee! Hubby survived his first week! The kids and I enjoyed another day of school work and the pool. We also found the trampoline that is at the hotel! Monkey and Ladybug had a BLAST jumping (poor Unicorn is to old for the trampoline). We had a nice relaxing evening as a family and then ran everyone through the showers again as Friday is the new Sunday! ;)

Probably not a bad way for a red-head to sunbathe!
Monkey sunbathing?
Ladybug catching some rays!
She loves the water slide!
Monkey enjoying the water slide.
I think we wore him out!
Fri., Feb. 14 - The Muslim Sabbath is on Friday so Friday is our new Sunday and off to church we went! Our little Branch is just that...LITTLE! We had 45 people in attendance and we meet in a nice Villa! The kids call it "Villa Church"! Since they knew we were coming there were lots of hugs and many people were glad to finally meet us!
Valentine's Display at the hotel
Sat., Feb. 15 - I got a massage and a detox body wrap!!! Then we took a family field trip the the mall to get some more long sleeve dress shirts for hubby to wear to work and I finally found a couple pair of jeans that fit...and a cute new top!

Sun., Feb. 16 - It was back to work for hubby...his first day going solo with his own classes. It wasn't too bad, only 3 forty-five minute classes! He also got his schedule and he will have 3-4 classes of 6th grade science each day. He has to be at his school by 7. The boys do stretching, read from the Koran and sing the National Anthem at 7:15 and then classes start at 7:30. The boys are finished at 1:15 and the teachers can leave at 1:30 (except for Mon and Wed when they have professional development until 3:00). The kids and I hung out at the pool and the trampoline again (tough life, I know)! Around 5 in the evening we got an email that all the new (middle and high school) teachers would be heading to Abu Dhabi for training for the next 3 days and to call if they needed hotel accommodations. Hubby decided to catch a ride with his normal carpool and come back to Al Ain each night. Unicorn went to Seminary in the evening.

Mon., Feb. 17 - Hubby was up early and off to Abu Dhabi for training. The kids and I had breakfast, did some school work and headed off to the mall for their ice skating lessons. Have to say I was impressed as the have NEVER ice skated before. They got out on the ice about 20 minutes before their lessons and started trying to figure out how to move on the ice. Then they had about 25 minutes of lessons and the girls were able to ditch the "walkers"! The practiced for another 45 minutes or so and then I had to drag them off the ice so we could go get some lunch! They have begging to go back ever since we left! If they still like skating after a few more lessons we will sign them up for lessons on Wednesdays too! After lunch we found a nice little clothing store that had some cute clothes for kids and we picked up a few items for the kids.
Ladybug before her lesson
Monkey before his lesson
Unicorn and Ladybug before their lesson
Lesson time!
Unicorn skating without the walker
Ladybug without the walker
Racing to the other end of the rink
Not bad for first timers!
Monkey without the walker
Monkey going all the way around the rink after his lesson
Practicing after their lesson
Ladybug not wanting to leave!
Tues., Feb. 18 - Laundry and play dates again! In fact, we had 2 play dates today! Lots of fun. Unicorn had a Youth Activity in the evening. They went to the Rugby Club and played Frisbee Golf!

Wed., Feb. 19 -Today we caught up with some school work after a busy week. Hopefully we will make it to the pool tomorrow! Insha'Allah (means God willing...a VERY common phrase here)! Hubby was able to pick up his passport with his permanent resident visa today and get some information from the bank too. We have a local account and our housing allowance but no house or bank card! No will all happen eventually!
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