Wednesday, November 24

who is the boss?

the other day we were going to jason's parent's house for dinner. because of the time change, it was already dark when we left our house. this really stressed hiba out. because most of the time, when it is dark, it means it is bed time for her. so the whole way, she kept saying "we can't go to gramma and papa's because it is dark!".

finally jason said to her, "hiba. chill out. it is ok that we are going to gramma and papa's house even though it is dark. are you the boss? no. i am saying it is ok. and who is the boss?"

hiba relied, "daddy is the boss!"

and then after a moment of silence, she added, "haha! i just called mommy daddy!".

Monday, November 22

on being thankful

a lot of my friends are updating their facebook statuses or blogs every day with things they are thankful for. i don't really like joining in facebook fads, you know like the 25 things list or putting where i like it as my status. instead of jumping right in, i wait awhile and then reluctently join in with everyone else in a i-don't-really-want-to-do-this-but-i-will-since-i-know-you-all-are-dying-to-know-what-i-think sort of way. so, in that vein of thought, here are some things that i'm thankful for at the moment.

i'm thankful for my kids. i am also thankful that they are growing up. i am also thankful for older moms that tell me that i can be thankful that they are growing up, instead of telling me that i should cherish every moment with them while they're little because this is the best time. because if this is the best time....well, shoot. i love my kids. i really am glad that i get to stay home with them. but they are exhausting. physically, emotionally, mentally exhausting. but they are growing up. and it is so fun to watch. like today, they just played outside while i did things around the house. i left the door open and checked on them about every two minutes, but they can play outside by themselves. both of them! which means i can actually clean and organize because they are not right by my side waiting to instantly destroy whatever progress i make. they actually play together some now, which is so cute. matthias mimics hiba's every move and she loves to lead him around, show him things, read to him, help him play. it's so sweet. and i am so glad we're past the baby stage and will be glad when we're past the toddler stage. but they are fun. i love them.

i'm thankful for my husband. he's great. i've realized this a lot lately. i'm thankful that God put us together and that we're a good match.

i'm thankful for friends. we've made some pretty great friends in little rock and it's neat to see how that's developed this year. we're finally making some friends together, instead of me having my mom friends and jason having his rugby friends. we've gotten to hang out with friends together a lot lately, which has been great. we've also gotten to see some old friends, which is always fun.

i'm thankful for home decor. kinda shallow, i know. but lately i've had time and energy to get some painting (thanks mom!) and decorating done and our house is actually looking more like a grown-up house and less like a college dorm room. it's less stressful to sit in my living room because my list of things to put on the wall or furniture to paint or fix is slowly getting smaller and i actually like the way my house is looking.

i'm thankful for this weird crazy nice weather. it's like 70 degrees outside right now. which means my kids can play outside, i can have the windows open, our gas and electric bills are crazy low. all around a good thing. unless this is all due to global warming, and then it's a bit on the disastrous side, but right now i love it.

i'm thankful for new boots. i finally gave into this skinny jean and boots look that seems to be all the rage. sometimes i feel like i look like my little sister (which is ok, since she's super cute, but i'm a little older than her and a mom, so i don't feel like i should look like i'm 19), but i have to say i like the look. plus the boots keep me warmer (you know, in the cold 50 degree weather we've had the last few nights....) and they're almost as comfy as flip-flops.

Tuesday, November 16

then and now

things i did today:
*woke up in my house as my heater was going
*ate cold cereal for breakfast
*went to a brunch for a moms group i am in
*experienced fall weather
*went to one grocery store to buy a turkey, asian food, potato chips, and bananas
*had friends over for dinner
*went to bed with the assurance that tomorrow i'll live in the same place that i did today

things i didn't do today:
*eat fresh made pita and hummus for breakfast
*pack up the last of my stuff that i just have to have, while trying to give away anything i can't fit in my suitcases
*decide that i do in fact want more stuff than will just fit in seven suitcases and throw together an unknown number of boxes to be shipped to us (although i'm fairly certain the number of boxes packed is at least one more than the number we got....)
*say goodbye to the life i'd known for three years
*hug and wave goodbye to some of the best friends i could ever ask for
*take one last look at the place my kids were born
*miraculously fit seven suitcases, a double stroller, two car seats, a diaper bag, a huge purse, two kids and three adults into one vehicle to drive to the border
*made it through israeli customs without having to take my clothes off
*leave palestine

Friday, November 5

and then we realized...

it was a cold night. one of the coldest so far that year. and of course, our heaters didn't work. the landlord promised he would fix them soon. i said we should call up saleem asap to see if we could borrow the propane heater that he had since he never used it, it was actually ours at one point, and the landlord never fixed anything nearly as quickly as he said he would. but instead, i settled for my fuzzy blanket that jason had gotten me for christmas our year at the house of hope. he knew how much i loved fuzzy blankets, and since he got me one it meant i didn't have to somehow have all of my fuzzy blankets shipped over from the US - which was what my plan was.

so anyway, it was cold. i snuggled up in my brown fuzzy blanket on our uncomfortable couch, probably watching some re-run of boston legal, listening to hiba not sleep in her room and praying that matthias would actually stay asleep in his. it started like most other november nights that we'd had in palestine.

i don't remember who brought it up, but somehow jason and i got to talking about our rejection letter. the one from the ominous, all-powerful committee at the ministry of interior that kindly informed us that our request for visas was denied and we had two weeks to leave. by now we were down to 11 days. our plan was to ignore it. we had tickets bought for the end of december, weren't planning on coming back anytime soon, so who cares what the committee said. we'd stay. they might fine us, they might black-list us, but whatever. who cares, right?

but then we started talking. and thinking. and realizing. we realized that our plan was kinda dumb. jason is more qualified to work in palestine than anywhere else in the world. our lives, our kids lives, some of our best friends were formed there. and five years (our potential black-list time) is a long time. heck, three years is a long time. that's how long we'd been there. we realized that putting ourselves in the position of not being able to return was not really an option.

so we started to talk. and pray. and think. and pray some more. and in a couple hours our normal november night had been turned upside down. we were leaving in 11 days. we had plane tickets to change, baby furniture to sell, clothes to pack, books to ship, a car to sell (or push off a cliff....). but most of all, we had a life to wrap-up, a chapter to close. and we had 11 days.

but on the good side, we could tell our landlord he didn't have to fix our heaters and soon i'd be back to all the fuzzy blankets i could ever want. a lot sooner that i wanted.