Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Spring is in the air

It actually does get quite cool here….the cold at night killed off my peppers ….and the days now are in the 60’s range.  Tents have multiplied in the desert, and I can see that rare glint of greenery that will be around for a short bit before summer’s heat.  The dragon flies are back….they are everywhere and bigger than I remember dragon flies to be…there are lots of birds flying to and fro…and I often hear the cooing of pigeons….right on my window sill here in the desert!!!? 

I played golf at the make shift desert golf course near the site, for the first time.  It actually wasn't bad…on the hard sand my ball traveled much further than if it were on nice green grass….but I actually was keeping my eye out for the desert lizards….saw foot prints…and was ready to follow them instead of my errant golf ball.

On the way home, at almost the same instance, John and I spotted something actually growing along side the road.  So of course we stopped and this is what we found.desert melon


Melons……growing wild along the roadside…they look big here, but they are no bigger than a tennis ball.  I tried researching these babies…but found nothing to report to you….I cut one open and have to say….it may look like a melon as we know it…but all I did was touch my finger to it to taste……and it didn’t taste like what I expected….hmmm…maybe it needs to ripen????

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The ship of the desert……






In olden days, Arabs famously used to refer to the camel as 'the ship of the desert.


Camel racing is a favored sport in the Persian Gulf nations, and it is no different in Kuwait. It is a tradition that is firmly rooted in the culture of these desert nations, where the camel in times past was esteemed as a valuable animal, providing transport, meat and milk.


Today amongst the material wealth of these nations, the camel is less important for these purposes, but camel racing is conducted in the present day with undiminished fervor.

Camel racing is in many ways somewhat different from horse racing, which is practiced throughout the world. Interestingly, racing camels are usually females as the males are considered to be ill-natured and difficult to handle.


Welcome to the Kuwait Camel Club

Camel racing is a fervently and enthusiastically followed sport, with breeders expending huge sums on breeding, and devotees of the sport following developments in camel racing with great zeal. Thousands cheer on their race favorites, while on some tracks breeders and other enthusiasts speed alongside in their motor vehicles.

The pictures are fun…..but you gotta be there to believe this….so here’s the next best thing




Saturday, February 5, 2011

Christmas in my heart


I love how Christmas is really a celebration the whole month of December….that is when the carols are playing, shopping to be done, get togethers, cookie making etc.  And the week between Christmas and New Years kids are off from school and many grown ups have time off too.I arrived two days after Christmas but  Lizzy’s tree was still up and the boys walked me around the house to see every decoration they placed.  They stuck to me like glue…wherever I went they went..sharing the same chair, my name on their lips….grammy grammy grammy….telling me of all their important news, playing and reading….they made sure I felt loved !  (can it be any better than that?) Amy’s family joined us a day later and then it was all about the cousins.  So fun to see them all together.  We did manage to make the traditional gingerbread houses, something I did with my children every Christmas time…..and seems like just yesterday.  It was crazy and loud and fun!  We took them to a children’s museum , along with every other family in Milwaukee and experienced chaotic on a new level, only to leave after 45 min and discover a visit to McDonalds playground and lunch was more to all of our liking. New Years Eve was a time for the mommies to have a break.  So, the three of us dressed up and went out for dinner. The girls were a bit skeptical wondering how soon their cell phone might ring.  All was kept under control and we came back to a quiet house,  What a treat to sit with your adult daughters laughing and talking, no interruptions and the bond strengthened not only as mother, daughters, sisters, but as women.  My heart expands and my heart experiences love in yet another dimension, as I observe the new  stages my children are in( them as parents) and each new phase the grandchildren are in…which happens in a blink of an eye.



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I spent a week in baby land…and once again got to experience such joy and love as I was caught up in the life of my son’s family.  Three babes to feed, hold, clothe, cuddle,bathe, to move from one place to the other..and a big brother to keep busy, wrestle with,  and play.  Oh gosh, how do they do it???  They just do!  They have a rhythm  The triplets are 19 months…just beginning to walk….still faster on all fours.  Each demonstrates their unique personality, and this is the only way I am able to distinguish who is who between Chase and Mason.  Juliannna has determined her place….that of the princess….and the boys seem to acquiesce…including Mack!  Kristal worried I might want to go somewhere or do something while visiting…that never crossed my mind…it was wonderful to just be part of their life for a week….my favorite place to sit…..on the floor….that's where all the action is….building blocks over and over,  babies crawling all over you, sneaking kisses, and the many parades either chasing or following up the hallway and around the table. 

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Mike's family


I am blessed, my heart is full, there is no end to love….in giving or receiving it. 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

York, England

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Train Station in YorkPicture 126

The Royal York

The city was founded by the Romans in 71 AD. ] In the Middle Ages York grew as a major wool trading centre and the ecclesiastical capital of the northern province of England. York is a walled city, situated at the confluence of the Rivers Ouse and Foss in North Yorkshire, England.


We enjoyed walking the small, quaint  streets, and shopping at the many shops…I even got my hair cut in the medieval town!!!


In the park near the river…John was able to capture ruins of an old cathedral…  the lighting was perfect.

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We really enjoyed our time here…met some nice people…


                                                          and celebrated Christmas together.

A very different Christmas…..

Our R & R did finally turn out to be really delightful…… We had SNOW, we  had Christmas lights and music and fanfare….we did get to rest in York, visit and shop in a medieval town, and experience Christmas Eve Service at midnight at a gothic cathedral, York Minster.


but getting there was an adventure

.A train to Calais,

John on train deb on train to Calais

a ferry over the   English Channel



This was pretty impressive…..there were bars, restaurants, food court, a duty free shop, arcades…….a mini cruise!


It was dark when we arrived in Dover, England…and unable to capture it with a camera, but we did see the “Cliffs of Dover”


Catching the next train to London…..we arrived around 11:00 pm….lugging our suitcases behind us; we came up from the tube and saw this:


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.this is what we wanted to see….a little bit of Christmas.  This is an outdoor Holiday Market in Hyde Park.  Our hotel was on the other side of this….very big park….three local young men were extremely helpful with all the fancy GPS stuff on their phones….they were able to direct us….get in a taxi.


Thistle Hyde Park Hotel Exterior

Thistle Hyde Park Hotel… over looked Kensington Gardens

Due to the storm….and travel delays, our time in London was cut in half. 


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We visited Kensington Palace and the Towers….went to the theatre and saw OLIVER

A lovely lunch and rest

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We had two days before hopping a train headed for