Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Back to Abu Dhabi

The boys are definitely spoiled with Business class now.  Graham is so pre-occupied with the Entertainment TV that he can't even say "cheese" to the camera!
The headset provided is still a little bit too big for Charlie, so I ended up wrapping the socks (provided from the complimentary toiletry bag) on the top side of it.  Voila! :-)  On the previous trip, I used a napkin that was provided during meal time. The flight attendant really got a good laugh out of that one!
Speaking of a good laugh, I had a little "glitch" in my wardrobe during check-in to travel in Business Class, so I had to buy a new shirt and some new shoes.  And of course, the terminal only had 1 store that sold shoes and they only had men's shoes!  This was probably the only time I was blessed to have big feet.  I think I managed to get away with these:
Once landed back in the UAE, we all got to ride in a bus back to the terminal.  Haven't done that in a while!  It's pretty cool to be able to see the big airplane up close.
Okay, so how much Mac 'n' cheese boxes to we really need???  Probably still not enough!
The boys had class photo-taking the same week we returned.  Thankfully they were awake and all for it!  I did manage to take a few of my own:
Charlie is being his cheeky self, as usual:
And yes, it's getting hot here!
The roundabout at the end of our street is being repaired.  They finally decided to tear the whole thing up instead of patching up the depressions.  So in the meantime, we see our new construction "guy" every day.  He's our favorite one so far out of all the other ones we've seen around the city!
After I took the photo, I noticed his left arm is actually an arrow. It was painted black the next day after I took this pic.  Too funny!  We are bracing ourselves for another summer here.  Can't believe it will be 1 year once July rolls around!  It was just 42C or 107F last weekend.  YIKES!!!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Storage in Tulsa

Prior to coming back to the UAE, we decided to stop by in Tulsa, Oklahoma to pick up some things from storage (and to see some friends too, of course!).  I wanted to pick up some old family photo albums, especially those of my mom.  Gosh... where do I start??!
After moving a few things out of the way, I found this little box in the corner marked "Photo Albums" and "Abu Dhabi".  Phew! Thankfully I didn't have to move too many things out of the way!
The boys were happy watching a DVD.  Why do we have so many stools??? And ah, the rocking horse. I remembered driving by a garage sale and going back there the next day to pick that one up!
The boys had some other fun too in the storage unit:
Whhheeee...!!!
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The trip to Tulsa is never complete without going to Lowe's.  So many mowers to pick from!
Awww... so tired after!
But never tired enough for some blue ice-cream!
By the way, did I mention how much it rained during our 3 days there?  It was nice to actually see some rain and lots of clouds, for a change:
Needless to say, it was a successful trip back to Tulsa.  I'm so glad I have to photo albums now. All 3 of them. Yes, only 3. And that's exactly what Bob said "Only 3???" except in not quite the same tone as me :-)
I'll share some pics with you.  This is me in Kindergarten at age 6.  Graham and Charlie look nothing like me!
And I remembered my hair being frizzy like that (at age 9).  My mom decided she wanted to perm my hair. I spent the rest of that day trying so hard to brush it straight! Obviously, it did not work. Ha!
It's also nice to have my wedding dress back in my possession. It's the white one.  The purple/pink one was made in Beijing, China when I was there for a golf tournament. Funny enough, that's where I met Bobby (in 2005) in a pro-am. Unfortunately, this one doesn't fit me any more! And then, just another qi-pao in red color. Being Chinese, you can never have enough of these :-)
And coincidentally, I really needed a draft stopper for our back-door in the kitchen here in Abu Dhabi and I found one that we used in Tulsa while rummaging through a couple of boxes.  Perfect!... to keep all that sand and heat out!
It was definitely a great trip back to Tulsa. We all had a good time catching up with some old neighbors and friends.  Not sure when we'll swing by there again. Maybe I'll have to make up some other thing to pick up in storage ;-)

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Phoenix Trip

Yet another trip to Phoenix this past Spring Break.  We love it there! I think we love it there even more after being here in a different country.  Probably mainly because of all the conveniences in the US and also a lot fewer speed bumps and roundabouts on the road!
As usual, the boys have no issues flying Business Class (thank you, Daddy!). Charlie loves playing with the seat controls. Yes, it even comes with a massage option!
All set and ready to go! Mommy has a good view of ALL her boys - making sure they all behave on the flight:
Even before the flight takes off, Graham has already gone through the complimentary toiletry bag:
I think this says it all!
16 hours later, we land in Dallas and spend the night there.  Excellent idea, daddy!  The boys love being in a hotel room.  Hmm... I wonder why???
The next morning, jetlag sets in for Charlie:
Graham, on the other hand, is ready to start digging/playing in the backyard!
By the way, he was up at 3am the next three days before finally adjusting to the time change. In the meantime, lots of play time on the computer:
And also playing with bubbles outside.  Charlie loves getting at the bubbles with his golf club. Thankfully it's a plastic one:
More digging!
It's just amazing what kids think up with boxes.  I think this is a classic - "I... Am... A... Robot".  Graham even drew in the eyes, nose, and mouth:
I'm so thankful for this playroom. The boys love making a mess in there and relaxing and watching DVDs.  But somehow, that mess still overflows into the living room and kitchen! Kids, I tell ya!
New hat for Charlie! We found it at Target - gosh, how I have missed you!
Speaking of Target, we managed to find the ONLY underwear print that Charlie will wear! Charlie loves this new TV series on the Disney Jr channel called "Paw Patrol".  He is probably 99% potty trained now. Still wetting the bed at night but overall, doing really well!  Graham upgraded to some new undies too - boxer briefs for him. It's so funny how the boys are different that way.
Anyway, probably too much information there. Ha ha!

Back to Phoenix and back to... more bubbles!!!
During one of our trips to the supermarket, there was a fire truck parked along side the parking lot. Coincidentally, a fireman arrived in a... I'm guessing you call it a water tanker truck.  He was so nice to give the boys a tour of the fire ladder truck.  The boys loved it!
And when in Phoenix/Gilbert, we never miss going to the splash pad there.
As usual, always a fun time here.  Somehow, the boys decided to water the grassy area next to the splash pad:
Charlie ended up getting a few scrapes leaning over those bricks.  He's having too much fun to be bothered by it though!
Finally, some "daddy" time. This is probably why Bobby loves being back in Phoenix:
A little walk and... tada!
Speaking of golf, I was there to play in a mini-tour event.  Shot 73, 77, and 71 to finish T-16.  Not too shabby I guess.  I'm just glad I managed to end on a high note.  Plus, I think it took some guts to wear these compression socks!  It was quite the look which I wasn't used to.
It made me feel like a soccer player somehow and made me think of literally kicking the players! That's so bad, right??!  Well, if I'm able to shoot sub-par rounds feeling like that, maybe these compression socks aren't a bad thing after all.  I did somewhat feel a spring in my step - wasn't sure if it was the socks working or perhaps I was just having a good day! :-)

Friday, April 24, 2015

Teaching Graham how to write Chinese

A few weeks ago, I decided Graham needed to learn how to write his name.  Since he does get bored (and usually upset!) about having to practice writing, I figured perhaps something different this time might help.  Well, he actually did quite well!
I managed to find a book with little squares in them, so that helped as well.  Here he is learning to write "Lee" - my family name.  It is just a little tricky for him I think:
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And his Chinese name is "Wen", which means culture or literacy.  Thankfully it's a lot easier than Lee!
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We haven't done much writing since we just returned from a long trip.  Hopefully he won't nag too much once we have to get back to "work"!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Buzz hair cuts

Graham has been having his usual buzz hair cuts since he turned 2 year old, I think.  So when I go to the kids' hairdresser, I would just tell them to use the #2 setting on the clippers for Graham - all the way. Easy enough!
As for Charlie, I would normally tell the hairdresser to trim his hair shorter, so most of them have been using a combination of clippers and scissors. Well, except for this last guy.  He said #3? And as he trimmed some hair off the side of Charlie's head... I said, Ok, that looks alright.  And he proceeded to buzz his whole head just like Graham.  And then of course the realization sets in. Wow... that's really short!  And Oops... too late now! Ha ha!
Charlie definitely looks a lot cheekier and naughtier now with his buzz hair cut.  I suppose we are getting ready for the summer heat.  It was 93F today and I have been leaving the car running when I pick up the boys from school.  So far, the minivan has still been there in the parking lot when I return to it :-)
Soon enough, it will also be my turn to buzz my hair.  It will be my 4th time doing it, if I still decide on it - which means it will be 8 summers ago since my mom's passing.  I wonder how people will take it here since it is a whole different country here! I guess I'll find out later this summer!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Fun at the club

The golf club hosted a Family Day this past weekend.  The boys had loads of fun!  Graham was so excited about the bow-and-arrow section:
And he loves those bouncy houses:
And who doesn't love ice-cream, especially when it's free! 2 servings of rainbow sherbet for Graham:
And Charlie has ice-cream and pop-corn too, of course. This kid loves pop-corn! Thankfully he loves to floss his teeth too :-)
The club ran out of eggs to paint. Boo-hoo :-(
Here's Charlie a.k.a. our little fish.  He has no fear jumping into the deep end of the pool and he just learned to put his head into the water, with no goggles on!
Graham is still a little tentative but shows us he can put his mouth underwater. Baby steps with Graham!
It's amazing how different both boys are even though they live in the same house with the same parents!
Photo-op with Mommy!