Friday, January 31, 2020

January's Over

I feel like we are starting off 2020 good so far with three posts before the usual monthly recap! 😆

Besides new year's, exploring outdoors, and a happening week we still had lots of fun with friends, birthday parties, and school events!

1. Moana and Madison putting on a show.
2. The little ones were not to be left out and had their own show ready for the encore.
3. It's been chilly this month so instant pot potato soup hit the spot.
4. Birthday party fun watching the magician.
5. Scootering at Katara.
6. CeCe lounging.
7. Fun at Bounce for a friend's birthday party.
8. A coffee catch up with a friend.
9. A selfie? And with blue hair? Keep reading. ;-)

Two of my closest friends had their birthdays this month and I'm so thankful I got to celebrate with them. Michelle and I surprised our friend Marli by dyeing our hair blue and then dyeing hers. We love how it turned out and she was very thankful.

Michelle's birthday was towards the end of the month and we celebrated out in the dessert (blog post to come). However, I was able to give her a birthday hug and coffee on her day.

We signed up for a cooking class at 800 Degrees pizzeria and it was the perfecta after school activity for these hungry girls. They make delicious pizza!

We got to attend multiple fantastic and fun birthday parties this month! Our neighbor Sophia had a delicious and adorable candy-themed birthday and our friend Mikey had a fun Pokemon-themed party. The girls were in heaven at both!

1. We've visited a new favorite park multiple times this month. It's nearby and relatively unknown meaning it's not too crowded yet.
2. Olivia was excited to pick up trash. She ran over to us and said "I'm saving the planet!"
3. Delicious tacos for a Mexican fix.
4. If I fits, I sits. 🙄
5. Puddle jumping during the January rain.
6. Scarves and jackets for the cooler weather this month. [And Madi's fake eyeglasses she insists on wearing 🤷🏻]
7. Delicious Tandoori chai with a friend after visiting the new fruit and veg market.
8. My salsa-making helper with the goods from the market.
9. After church lunch with friends, but waiting for the restaurant to open.

The girls had Sports Day this month at school. The parents were invited to come watch the younger kids outside, but since Madi had seen me at the opening ceremony I snuck over to the gym to watch her as well. The weather was perfect and the girls were ecstatic about their medals!

Madi has been learning about places in Qatar and had multiple field trips in December and January to visit different landmarks. The unit is finished, but not before their Celebration of Learning where we were invited to meet with our "travel agent" and learn about Qatar. Madi loved showing me the pictures she's made and helping me prepare for my trip.

I saw multiple memes about the 37th day of January and how the month felt slow. It seemed to pass quickly for our family (not without it's ups and downs of course) because of so many things happening in Doha and school that have kept us busy. However, we are excited for February to come because we have some fun things to look forward to next month!


Sunday, January 19, 2020

Doha Happenings

Do you ever have those weeks where it feels like there is so much unique stuff happening that you want to do and take advantage of? This past week was one of those and we definitely looking forward to resting next weekend!

We kicked off the weekend with a family bike ride from our compound over to the Lusail boardwalk. We weren't sure if we'd even be able to ride it, but we were and the girls did amazing and had a lot of fun! We rode along the boardwalk, stopped for a coffee and snack, played on the playground, and then finished the ride home.

That Sunday I met Jason at the convention center downtown near his office to walk the International Book Fair happening. We got some amazing deals on some great books and enjoyed a quick lunch together.

Tuesdays are half days for the girls and we took advantage this week to hit up the Kaffeinated Festival in Katara. The girls enjoyed waffles and hot chocolate and we enjoyed trying a couple different coffees.

Last year we attended the Light Me Lusail festival and were excited to visit it again this year. They changed up all the different light stations from last year and the girls loved it. Their favorites were the boards that made mosaics and the "conducting" of the lights.

While the weather was still nice we headed back to Torba Farmer's Market once again for scootering and some amazing food and juices!

Afterwards we had a quick outfit change and headed to Disney in Concert! The girls were mesmerized with the music and singing and we loved experiencing the joy with them!

I'm thankful that not all our weeks are quite this busy, but was happy to take advantage of all the fun things happening in Doha!


Monday, January 6, 2020

Desert Exploring and Mangroves Kayaking

We continued our adventures around Doha the first weekend in January by heading out of the city once again. This time we were on the search for desert rose rocks!

I mentioned to Jason ages ago that I wanted to go out and hunt for this unique rock and that I'd found an old blog saying it was in the Umm Bab area. Jason took he initiate and started researching on his own and found another blog that listed GPS coordinated in that same general area where you could find the rocks. The blog was over ten years old, but we packed up the car and figured if nothing else the girls would get some fresh air and play in the sand.

We walked around in the general area and then all of a sudden looks down and bam there they were! So many of them laying on the surface. Small and intricate ones, larger fragile pieces. They were everywhere!!

We also saw free- range camels roaming in the area. So cool! A Qatari woman stopped by the girls while they were having a snack and told them they were her camels and asked them if they liked them. :-)

We'd booked a guided kayaking tour and scheduled it back in December. However, when Evelyn hurt her finger we had to reschedule. Thankfully they understood and so on Saturday we headed to the other side of Qatar towards Purple Island. These mangroves (shrub or small tree that grows in coastal saline or brackish water) are famous for having flamingos and being gorgeous. We didn't get to see any flamingos on our visit, but we all had an amazing time and I think we will be looking into renting kayaks to visit again!


The weather was gorgeous and we loved spending another weekend outdoors exploring a different (and green!) part of Qatar.


Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Welcome 2020!

After celebrating New Year's Eve, we headed to the nearby Museum of Islamic Art park for some outdoor playtime. Madison visited the park with her class in December and she's been begging to go back since. It's a huge park with lots of play areas and activities.

That afternoon we had friends over to play games and have traditional black-eyed peas and cornbread. Regardless of where we have lived while overseas, we have made sure to have this meal on January 1st. It's a fun tradition and we enjoyed sharing it with friends!

This year's recipe was by far my favorite and we will definitely be making it again next January!


New Year's Eve 2019

Similar to last year we decided to do a hotel staycation. We found a reasonably priced brunch, booked the hotel with points, and got excited for our mini getaway.

During check-in the hotel had a complimentary chocolate hour. Great way to kick off the weekend!

We got dressed up for dinner and took pictures while we waited for the evening to start.

The girls changed into pajamas shortly after the dinner started to participate in the kids sleepover the hotel had arranged for them. They enjoyed games, Frozen on repeat, and playing while we continued eating our dinner.

Definitely the first to arrive 😆

The girls enjoyed the chocolate fountain for dessert (and half their dinner). YOLO, right?

This is the part where I say we made it to midnight and rung in the new year before going to bed. Lies. The girls were done and so were we. We snuck up to our room and all climbed into bed around 11:15 (so close) and watched the fireworks show at the Burj Khalifa in Dubai on TV before the girls crashed. We moved them to their beds and then stay half-awake until the Doha new year before collapsing into bed. #partyanimals

Happy New Year 2020!

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