wherever you go


Myka and Emery

Myka is a sweet, doting, slightly smothering, older sister.  Sometimes the hugs are a little too close and long, and sometimes the kisses are on the plentiful side, but I love it.  She is gentle. She loves her baby sister.  And because Myka is away at school all day during the week I appreciate that when she is around she wants to hold and take care of Poppy.

Emery shows his love in different ways. He often shares his blanket and stuffed animals with her which is especially adorable because these are usually His Things. He covers his ears when she cries and doesn’t like when she is ‘loud.’ Not that the boy is quiet; he is the loudest of the three by far. He misses his momma sometimes, so I am making sure to spend some one-on-one time with him.  Today, we made Cookie Balls (actually called Energy Bites, but kids like cookies so..). He is a good helper.

Poppy is doing well. She is a week old today! We are still taking it easy. Stephen has started going to work in the afternoons, and I’m working my way toward being up in time to get Myka ready for school. I am so glad we have the flexibility to make this a gradual process. I’ve only been a mother of three for a week, but so far it’s been wonderful!

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There’s a dragon in our bathroom

I sent Myka to the bathroom to wash her hands.


Myka – I need the light turned on. There’s a dragon in there, but it disappears when the light is on.

Me – Ok. I’ll be right there.

Myka – there’s a dragon.

Me – I’ll turn the light on so the dragon will disappear. [I turn on the light]

Myka – It’s still here. But it’s just a little one.

Me – As long as it doesn’t eat you, that’s fine with me.

Myka – It’s a good one. It does this.

She crouches with her hands held up in front of her – like a rabbit.

Myka – It doesn’t bite me.  It’s pretend.






I found more pictures!

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These are the Easter eggs we dyed.  We used purple cabbage, red onions, yellow onions, and beets. (In the picture, from front to back: cabbage, beets, red onion, yellow onion.) I put a piece of white muslin in the dye with the eggs just to see what would happen, and someday I’ll dye some fabric this way. The fabric that was in the cabbage dye looks lavender, but it turned more blue later. It has a iridescent, two-tone look.  I love these colors!  The eggs sat in the dye in the fridge for about four days.  Then Myka helped me shell them and we made deviled eggs.  Then I ate at least six deviled eggs a day, probably more.  I really like them, and they needed to be eaten anyway.



We invited some people over for dinner on March 15th, the Ides of March.  So we jokingly said it was toga party.  Myka and Emery wore togas….for three minutes because they hated them and wanted them off. Now.  I’m not sure if Myka is laughing or crying in this picture. I’m guessing laughing, but I’m sure she was unhappy soon after this picture was taken.

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Family time at the pool makes me happy!  Just the short walk there is exciting: Emery wanting to walk, tossing items out of the wagon, Myka excitedly going the wrong direction.  Haha! There was laughter, there were tears, and we love it. That one picture of my feet – that’s about all of me that got in the water. It’s still quite chilly, hence the wrapped up Myka warming herself beside the pool.  Not to worry; I’m sure it will be all too toasty soon.  I’m told the water gets too hot to swim in during the summer.  When that happens I think we’ll all just stay inside.  Can it be called hibernation if it’s summer and hot out?

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now I have time

EDIT: After I posted this I accidentally deleted all the photos on my blog.  I’m not sure if I can find the ones that are in this post; they aren’t in my photo folders.  I’m still working on it, but until then….


And now that I have some extra time I can catch up on posting some photos.  Let the randomness begin!

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Myka has some letter stickers and I made a page for her to use them on one day.  She did a great job finding the correct letter sticker and putting it very neatly on the page.

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Myka and I made a tent for her out of a sheet over the coffee table and couch.  The cats thought it was for them.


Lola is still shy, but she is getting more and more friendly and will let you pet her.  Sometimes.

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I love when my children eat food.  Crackers with peanut butter and raisins (frogs on lily pads) was a big hit.  And oranges. They love oranges.  “These have orange juice inside!” is Myka’s comment every time we eat them.

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Myka, Emery, and I went on a bus trip from our compound to a beach in Jubail.  The trip was organized for the Bechtel wives here in Jubail, and most of the people who went were from the other, larger compound here.  A bus came to Al Jude (the compound we live in) and pick up three other women and the three of us.  I didn’t know what to expect or what to pack.  I wondered if we were going to be on the beach or just see the beach, if there were going to be other children, if Stephen was going to have to come rescue me half an hour after we arrived…  But it was great and we didn’t need to be rescued.  There was a play ground and lots of other kids.  Myka and Emery dug in the sand while the adults sat in chairs and chatted on the beach.  Lunch was delicious; I had shawarma for the first time and loved it.  There lots of little sandwiches and bite sized desserts.  Most of the time I was chasing Emery, trying to keep him near by, or explaining to Myka why she couldn’t get into the water, so I only ended up with these two photos.  Disappointing but typical.  He loved peeking through those slats though!  This was on one of our walking loops during lunch.  No high chair meant I was either trying to hold a squirmy boy or we were walking.  We walked a lot.  I am so thankful for friends who help me keep an eye on Myka and Emery!  They are the only way I can make it through these kind of events.

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I don’t like I ever told you about the soup Stephen and I made.  Chicken vegetable soup made with real broth which Stephen cooked down himself.  He is such a good cook.  I love when he makes me broth.  It’s a labor of love, and I’m thankful he takes the time and makes the effort to do things like that.  This wasn’t as good as the broth he made from our deep fried, flavor infused turkey last year, but come on…they were deep fried.

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There was a recipe for apple cinnamon scones that I wanted to try, but it called for cinnamon chips.  I didn’t know if I could find any around here, so I looked up a recipe for making your own cinnamon chips.  These. Are. Amazing.  I can’t wait to try this with cinnamon bread.  And you can use a different seasoning instead of cinnamon to make pumpkin pie spice chips or ginger chips or whatever else you want in little bursts of flavor.  Yay!  The scones turned out quite yummy, by the way.




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I made some animal crackers from weelicious.com.  They were easy, yummy, and the kids gobbled them up.  I don’t think they lasted three days, maybe only two.  The first tray burned.  The oven got too hot.   This is a continual problem for me, but I’m learning and checking on whatever I’m baking more often.  Myka helped me cut out the cookies and loved picking out the cookie cutters.  I loved that these cookies are made from basic ingredients and I know what my children are eating.  We’ll make these again!


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Sleepy girl! Sometimes if she sits still long enough and she is tired enough she will fall asleep during quiet time.  So cute..

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After going out for lunch in Jubail with some friends, we stopped at Cafe Lewan for some cheesecake.  Stephen mentions this cafe and their delicious cheesecake just about every time we drive past it, and I was tired of hearing about it but not eating it.  It was so good!  The coffee shops here have very good pastries and desserts and hot chocolate.  Because I don’t get out much, they probably seem all that much more exciting. Haha!

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We’ll end with some of our fun, everyday photos. Emery desperately wants the phone.  Only, he likes to put it in his mouth, so I he doesn’t get to hold it very often which makes him a little upset.  Myka likes to take pictures with my phone.  Pictures of me, herself, the cats, the rug, a doorknob, the counter….the world from the viewpoint of a three year old.

The. End.

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It’s quiet. I’m (almost) alone.  Emery is napping, and Stephen took Myka to the pool.  It’s her first trip, and while I’m disappointed to not be joining in the fun I’m content to have some time to myself.

This morning we slowly got up and ready and then went out for lunch with some friends.  The children were well behaved, and the food was delicious.  What more could you want?!  Haha..  We even played on the playground right outside the restaurant before lunch and stopped for cheesecake afterwards.  It has been a Lovely Thursday so far!

The restaurant we went to is called the Streakhouse.  I really like their food, and most of the time the customer service is very good.  They have these bread sticks that are sprinkled with garlic salt or garlic and salt or something, and they are so good I just keep nibbling on them the whole time we are there.  We should go back soon.  *hint hint*

My belly is full and now the question is – Do I do anything productive with my quiet time or do I just read and watch tv?   My money is on the second option…

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I make breakfast for lunch all the time.  At least once a week.  Pancakes, french toast, scrambled eggs, something like that.  For one thing, Myka will usually eat these things, but also, they’re really easy to make.  I like that it’s basic ingredients: bread, milk, eggs.  I either have them in the house or we can pick them up at the store here during our walk in the morning.  The kids usually just get them plain, but I’m trying to get Myka to try something on her pancakes.  Peanut butter? Bananas? Honey?  So far she hasn’t wanted any of these things.  I think I’m going to look for some frozen berries, maybe strawberries.  Ooh!  maybe I’ll chop up some apples into tiny pieces and add more cinnamon.  Maybe she’ll like that. I know I will…

What do you put on pancakes?  Anything your kids really like?


catching up


Our porch is being screened in.  It will be wonderful to be able to use it more. In this picture the screens are not up yet.  They are a dark green, so it does darken the porch, but not too much.  Now we just need to kill the mosquitoes that are now trapped on our side of the screens. Stephen filled in some holes in the structure of the porch and added a latch to the door.

Because our porch is now enclosed, our two kitties have been delivered!  I’ll try to take pictures tomorrow, but most of the time today they hid behind the shelves that are on the porch.  Myka and I went out, sat on a blanket, and read for a while this afternoon.  Hopefully they will get used to us quickly.

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Here is the washcloth I knitted.  Isn’t it cute?!  I used a basic cotton, craft yarn.  Also, please notice my bracelet and Myka in the background.  She loves being a princess and dressing up.  And sometimes I get to dress up a little too.  It will be fun to have the sewing machine out and be able to make things for her and with her.  I think she’ll really enjoy that.  First, I need to find a desk for the sewing machine to sit on.  Usually I’d just use the table, but the chairs are too low.  It would be really uncomfortable.  I’m going to ask if they have some desks in storage here that I could look at and maybe a chair as well.

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I found these on my phone (among many others…).  Guess who was taking pictures with my phone!  We have a self portrait on the left and a very happy Emery on the right.  The image is blurry, but he is so excited to see his sister!  How cute is that?

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We still don’t have a seat for Emery.  These chairs have a large gap between the seat and the chair back, and he could fall right through it.  So this is how we feed him most of the time.  He doesn’t seem to mind very much.  And I love this picture of the three of us!

More catch up posts to come…