Monday, December 31, 2012


 This year we had Thanksgiving at our house and invited our neighbors the Gerbers, who are from South Africa and don't celebrate Thanksgiving, and the Riders who we know in China.  Nicole and I had a volleyball tournament in the morning which Gavin and Vika came to, so Jonny was left at home to cook the turkey.  Of course I had it all prepared so all he had to do was put it in the oven at 10:30 which he had forgotten so it didn't actually go in until 11:30.

We all gathered around 5:00 to enjoy our feast.

 Vika decorated the tables with these hand drawn pictures portraying the first Thanksgiving.

 The table was filled with turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, rolls, corn, and pumpkin fritters.  All the normal Thanksgiving delicacies.  We then topped it all off with pumpkin and apple pie.

 It was so fun to share this holiday with friends.  The Gerbers said that they wished South Africa had a similar holiday and mentioned that maybe they would make up their own to celebrate Thanksgiving.  Before eating we all shared what we were grateful for and then had a very nice evening.

Hail in Saudi????

 Who would have ever thought that it would hail in Saudi Arabia?  I was sleeping cozy in my bed one morning back in November and after hearing Gavin, Jonny, and Nicole leave for seminary at 5:20, I heard this loud crashing sound coming from upstairs.  I ran upstairs to see what it was, thinking it was a broken pipe or who knows what.  I heard the sound coming from outside like someone was throwing rocks at the window.  I opened the door to our roof terrace and found very large pieces of ice all over the ground.  Of course I ran to get my camera and ran downstairs to take pictures outside.  The ground was covered with hail the size of very large marbles.

I was so busy taking pictures that I didn't notice that our car was still parked under the carport and then saw Gavin and the kids staring at me.  They had just gotten in the car to leave when it started and decided to wait out the hail.  Good thing because it probably would have dented our car.  They waited about ten minutes but then decided it was too late to go and came in.

Crazy way to start the day!

 Proof that it does hail in Saudi Arabia.


 Halloween is fun no matter where we are in the world.  Who doesn't like to dress up and eat candy all night long?  Our compound here in Saudi had a Halloween party and trick or treating night.  This is an annual event here and is quite the popular one even though it is mostly an American holiday.

This year Nicole dressed up as an Egyptian princess and Vika was an angel fairy.
 Quite fitting with the Egyptian princess and mummy together.

 Lilly and Eila are the compound cuties.

 Kayla was a rock star zombie.

 Jonny said he wasn't going to dress up.  He came to the party as himself but 15 minutes later I saw this buxom blonde walk in and was trying to figure out who it was.  Lo and behold, it was Jonny.  I took a double take and was shocked at what a gorgeous blonde he was.  Gavin and Jonny had to do the Prom pose.
 The teenage gang at the compound.  Matthew, Sienna, Franco, Jonny and Chris.

 I  happened to have a few Halloween decorations that I brought from China with us.  I added some lanterns from Ikea and orange lights which I brought from home to decorate our porch.

 All the kids went trick or treating around the compound and loaded up on candy.

Volleyball 2012

 Yes, we love volleyball in this family.  It's not right up there with Basketball as one of our favorite games to play.  This year Jonny was the captain of the JV boys team, Nicole was a starting setter for the Middle School girls team which Coree coached.  Both Jonny and Nicole, who are superb athletes, were crucial players for the team.  Jonny was a power hitter with his awesome spikes and blocks, and Nicole was the tipping queen.  They both play the net very well.

 Nicole's team took third in SAIKAC.

 The JV Boys team took second in Eastern Province and third in SAIKAC.
So proud of these two!