Friday, November 30, 2012

Moving time

So...uh, yeaaaa... I'm moving.  Sweet.  No big deal.  JUST KIDDING!!!!  YAYAYAYAY!  Hip hip hooray!  And a HUZZAH for good measure!

The new place is really brand-new!  It's a small two-bedroom apartment with kitchen, two bathrooms, two rooms, and a living area.  It's really nice.  I like it (yes, I've seen it... twice!).  The other day, I went to see it and pretty much everything is moved in!  Another HUZZAH!

The only downside to moving (again) is that I have to pack everything up.  Yes, I unpacked my things because they told us they had no idea when we'd be moving.  And I have bought a lot of things!  GOOD GRIEF, have I bought a lot of things!  It's a wee bit ridiculous.  Like, seriously.  Ugh.  I feel like I have just about anything and everything a small FAMILY would need.  I might be slightly exaggerating, but STILL!  WHAT?! 

I can't wait to finally get into my apartment and unload everything.  Putting it in it's proper place and knowing I won't have to move it for the rest of this  year and (at least) next year, too.  Phew.

Peace, love, & new apartments!

Friday, November 23, 2012

YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!!!

KATIEDALE IS COMING TO KUWAIT!!!!!!  

FEBRUARY 7TH - PLEASE COME FASTER!!!!

PEBBLES!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

Yup, today is Thanksgiving.  It didn't hit me until I was awake for a couple of minutes, but I promptly wished my friends a great Thanksgiving. 

I love Thanksgiving.  It's a great holiday.  Not only is it filled with the most delicious food ever, it is filled with love, laughter, family, and warmth.  How can you not love that?!  This year's Thanksgiving was filled with school!  Yay!  But I still like to take some time to reflect upon things of which I am grateful for.  Here is a bit of that:

* my family * my friends * my sister * the people who have stuck by me no matter what * my students' parents * my assistant and very good friend, Hibah * blankets to pile on top of me * food to stuff my belly with * chocolate * ice cream * chicken * good friends to share laughs with * baby smiles * small hands in my hair * tiny arms wrapped around me in a hug * moving to an apartment very soon! * my Kindle * my education * my ability to grow * my ability to learn * my ability to see things from various vantage points * football (REDSKINS!) * my boss * my coworkers * travel * my hunger to see more and learn more and do more and be more * KatieDale * my sorority sisters, who are still around and continue to help me become better * amazing professors * laughter * the ability to be who I am...

Etc, etc, etc.  This list could go on and on and on.  You shouldn't just make a grateful list on Thanksgiving.  When I'm sad or in a down-and-out mood, I like to make a list of things that I'm appreciative of.  It doesn't always help, but it definitely gives you something about.  Things could always be worse.  We are lucky.  We are fortunate.  Be grateful for what you have and who you are.  Go out and do good.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Last Weekend


Last weekend was a great weekend, in addition to it being three days!

Starting with silly faces.

Fabric Souqs

Race-day apparel (whoop, crew!)

First 10K and medal!

Gorgeous sunsets.

Beautiful weather!

Here's hope to this weekend being just as dandy!

Peace, love, & cool weather!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

3 Days

... THAT has been the most magical thing ever, lately.  We had a surprise 3 day weekend last weekend because Kuwait celebrated their 50th anniversary of their Constitution.  They had so many fireworks - it was record breaking!  No, seriously!  It was!  I watched from the roof of our hotel, surrounded by good people.  I thoroughly enjoyed the hour of fireworks... I mean, who wouldn't?!

Then, we had a 3 day work week!  While it was super short, it felt super long.  I wasn't feeling life this week, and I'm not quite sure.  I guess it's just one of those slumps that creep up on ya and settle right on in for a bit.  I'm in the process of shaking it off for good at the moment!  This week at school, we started a new unit: Bears!  So I had the kids bring in their teddy bears and we have been doing fun things all week.  I'm excited to continue it next week.  If only the kids would get their ish together and stop being knuckleheads causing trouble.

THENNN we have another 3 day weekend!  It's the Islamic New Year (HAPPY NEW YEAR, btw!) and so we got Thursday off!  It's been relaxing so far.  Went to the salon and will probably meet up with some new friends tonight for some shisha and beverages.  I'm excited!  :)

Some other pretty awesome things: my boss complimented me on my comments on the report cards saying that I worded it very well and the parents can see what exactly is going on in the classroom from it.  :) My Arabic teacher (for the kids) loves me - so says all the other Arabic teachers! :) Went to Mad Musicals last night put on by SIK and it was pretty okay. :) Got to see Alex and Ian.  They always make me smile.

Here are some pictures and a video of my week!:






video








 Peace, love, & Lucky Number 3

Friday, November 9, 2012

This Week in Bullets

Hola,

This week has proven to be a bit of a test to my patience, happiness, motivation, and any other good/feel-good words.  But there have been pretty amazing things that have happened, too.  Here's what's been up:

  • the school (KG) has been going through assessments because report cards are coming out soon.  Thankfully (and, at times, surprisingly) my class did relatively well.  There were just a few that I had a feeling wouldn't do as well, and didn't.  But that's good!  I'm happy about that.  
  • in relation to assessments, I haven't really been in class this week because I've been assessing one-on-one and so my TA has been leading the class this week.  I missed them, until I was in the class yesterday.  They were complete MONSTERS.  We were going to have a fun day, but those little munchkins ruined it, so we did not fun work.  Suckers.
  • Obama got re-elected.  While I didn't really follow the election all that closely, I knew for a fact that I definitely did NOT want Romney to win.  I still don't feel like either were the best candidate, but Romney was just the WORST.  I cried out of pure happiness that he did not get elected.  Thank goodness for that.
  • us hotel people are still in the hotel and there hasn't been ANY good news WHATSOEVER.  We heard via hearsay that there might be an apartment ready in fifteen days, but when my roommate and I went to talk to the assistant superintendent yesterday, we were told it wouldn't be ready til January/February.  The apartments we were supposed to be moving into are all ready, but the owner backed out of having North Americans in his complex.  Bullshit.  ACA needs to get their shit together because it is not fun.  I'm fed up, but not to the point where I'm going to go find my own apartment, because our apartment stipend???  DUMB.  It's only 150KD, not nearly enough for anything.  Dumb dumb dumb stupid stupid stupid.  I'm very frustrated.  I love the school and my kids and my boss and my coworkers.  It's this one thing that is bugging me.  I'm not settled in and I don't feel at home yet because, well, I'm not at home.  It's dumb.  And frustrating.  And stupid.  
  • I'll end this with good news.  Next week, we start the 2nd Quarter and we are kicking it off with the theme of Bears!  I'm very excited to bring my teddy bear, Brianna, in.  It'll be great.  She'll have a blast in school.  Last time I took her to school (in Korea), though, the kids gave her stupid mole on her snout.  So... I will have to talk to her about how this school will be better... insh'Allah.  I really love bears.   


That's it, homies.  Sorry for the rant, I tried not to make it all negative, but whatever.

Peace, love, & teddy bears.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Home sweet home: Pakistan edition

Since I've been home for four days, I guess it's sort of time to write about Pakistan, eh?

Well, as most of you know, our flight was delayed... three times.  Yea.  Ridiculous, right?  That's what I'm saying.  We flew on PIA.  The last time I remember flying on it, I just remember it being really smelly and how my parents just complained about it.  Because it was so cheap, though, we booked our tickets with PIA.  Supposedly they have quite a history with delaying their flights a trillion times before actually leaving, and we got a little taste of that!  So, 12 hours after we were supposed to take off, we finally were on the plane.

It takes about 3 hours to get to Lahore from here, so it wasn't too bad.  The pilots are awful and it's still smelly, but that's about it.

We got off the plane around midnight and were greeted by my uncle and taken home.  We didn't see many family members because, well, it was midnight.  So we went to sleep to ready ourselves for the next day, in which we were to go FABRIC SHOPPING!  My cousin is having her wedding in January and, since it's during a 3 day weekend, we are going to go!  YAY!

That's what we did pretty much our entire first day - fabric shop.  Because it was the day before Eid, it was CRAZY out in the streets, yo.  People can be crazy insane, including my father the Pakistani-Kuwaiti-American driver.  Oy.

Our second day there was Eid.  We didn't go out much that day, aside for going to a pharmacy and a grocery store right quick.  We had a couple visitors, which was nice to see again (after 2.5 years for me).  That was nice.  We received raw meat from neighbors and family and my uncle, dad, and I went to the butcher to pick up our part of a CAMEL we ordered!  YESSSS!!!!

That night, my married cousins came over and we had a BBQ-type thing in the yard.  It was cold out, so the huge fire was very much welcomed!  The chicken kabob was delicious and Saman made delicious salad thingie!  :)  It was a lot of fun hanging out with the family in that way.  I don't remember having a time like that - just hanging out and laughing that much and smiling that much and stuff.  It was really really lovely.

Our last day in Pakistan, we spent the majority of the day in/around the house to squeeze in as much time with Grandma as possible.  We ate our CAMEL for lunch and it was DELICIOUS!!!!  Ahhh.  Nice-uh.


This trip was exceptionally nice.  While we didn't get out too much, we spent some good QT time with the family that proved to be one of the best trips I've had there.  It's so weird that the older you get, the closer you might become to cousins and aunts and uncles.  I love my Grandma too much, too.  I'm so incredibly happy I got to see her while I could.  It makes me happy making her happy, smile, and laugh (which she did a lot of).  Although there is a huge language barrier, we still manage to have a lot of fun together and understand each other after a couple of minutes of guessing, which just adds to the fun.  I'm hoping that by January, I can learn a couple more phrases of Urdu (heyyy, Rosetta Stone).  I love her.

 Fabrics!

 Mama :)

 The craziness of people.

 Family BBQing

 Mama, Grandma, and Daddy

 Eid Mubarak, goat!

 What an excellent gift!

 Thumbs up for a great visit!

Peace, love, & family