Thursday, June 28, 2012

Kids Unscripted: Chapter 4

Talia: (after bumping her leg) "It will feel better in 4 hours and 2 minutes."
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Talia: (singing) "Warm cross buns, warm cross buns, one a penny, two a penny..."
Me: "You don't sing 'Hot cross buns?'"
Talia: "No, I just want them to be warm."
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Talia: "Mommy, we need to make some bows for my sister."
Me: "When do you think you're going to get a sister?"
Talia: "I think God is going to put her in your tummy at 7:30"
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Talia: "That's a big plate for a Talia!"
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Talia: "Elias gave me a hug. Can I keep it?"
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Talia: "I'm exercising by doing a curl-around-feet dance!"
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Talia: (trying on my dress) "This makes me look like a little angel!"
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Talia: (looking at Elias) "I was that size when I was little..."
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Talia: "Me and Elias are holding hands. I guess I'm his friend!"
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Talia: "I'm a radio!"
Me: "So why aren't you making music?"
Talia: "My batteries are almost dead."
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Talia: "I'm making baby sounds so Elias can understand me."
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Talia: "When you eat, your food goes down your throat and into a ropellar-holder..."
Me: "a what?"
Talia: "A ropellar-holder and then it goes down and goes 'pbbbbbbbbt!'"
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Talia: (after talking about what a PROpeller was on a helicopter or a boat) "Sometimes people use a really long spoon to scoop the water."
Me: "I think you mean an oar."
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Talia: "All of the bananas are acting silly!"
Me: "They look pretty serious to me."
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(Talia was sitting on an ice chest)
Mr. Martin: (thirsty) "Can I get in that box?"
Talia: "I don't think you'll fit..."
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Talia: "When people stop growing, they don't grow anymore they just change numbers."
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Talia: "I think it's 30 o' clock."

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Modesty in the Middle East


Abu Dhabi is a very international city. Living here, one is very likely to learn about cultures from the entire world, because just about every culture lives here. Sometimes this huge cultural melting pot in the middle of an Islamic country can have its clashes. This is seen in the cover-up campaign going throughout the U.A.E. as a response to the scantily clad people, especially in the malls close to the beaches. The campaign is not forcing every woman to wear a head covering and the traditional abaya, but is simply requesting that people cover from the shoulders to the knees.

Whether you consider modesty an important part of your daily life or not, when in another culture one should consider what is appropriate for that culture. When people do not educate themselves on how to appropriately dress in another culture (or just don't care,) that culture has the right to respond with a way to enforce the desired dress code. 

I think the byline for the U.A.E. cover-up campaign says it all: "Freedom and Respect are given as long as you are not abusing them."

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A 4-year-old's Artwork: The Phase of the Parrot

Much of my daughter's inspiration for her artwork comes from what we have studied in science or seen in the natural world around us. Octopus, for example, came from a science investigation on these creatures. She then drew octopi frequently in following artwork, including the one below, which came from the end of what I'll call the octopus phase. (You can't see all of his tentacles, she said, because some of them are behind him. The baby octopi supposedly haven't developed all of theirs... yes, this is the imaginative part of "science" but isn't all art to some extent?)
She then asked me to draw the parrot on top, and thus began a whole new phase of artwork: the phase of the parrot.
Since then she has drawn many parrots. This rainbow-colored parrot has what's supposed to be a wing on the front.
This is a family of parrots, with a mommy parrot, Papi parrot and baby parrot.
Annnnd... this is what happens when Elias gets Talia's artwork. Apparently, parrots are tasty, too.

I wonder what she's going to draw next...

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Chocolate Tarts

While Chel was visiting us in Abu Dhabi she decided to make chocolate tarts. She never follows a recipe exactly... And that's usually a good thing. This time it was complicated by having limited measuring utensils, only whole wheat and raw sugar, but it was still delicious.

Here is the recipe we sort of went by:


Preparing the filling.

Preparing the dough.

Portioning the dough.


Adding the filling.


Ready to bake.

Iced...


This is a Talia-approved recipe!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Honey, there's a lot of honey!

Every time we pass the honey aisle I am amazed at how many varieties of honey there are. There are brands from many different countries and from many different flowers. Milk and honey is also seen as a popular fragrance in things like shampoo and lotions. Honey is advertised in many sweets as well, and is generally much more popular than I ever saw in the States. You don't, however, hear much of the Southern endearment: "honey" like you would where I'm from... unless it's just said in Arabic and I'm not understanding.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Produce in Abu Dhabi

Every country introduces me to more new fruits and vegetables. There are several new things here in Abu Dhabi, but sometimes I can't find their names... so I took some pictures:
 (not the best with the phone, but that's the easiest way to get it.)


The only thing I recognize here, are the squashes on the top left... and I'm not super familiar with those.

I've never heard of a Pomelo before, or seen this type of fruit.


These look like particularly strange cucumbers to me.

These remind me of a large acorn or squattier-shaped eggplant.


Something else that is new to me here is the way you have to ring up the produce in its own special section. (Pictured above.) You get all of the produce you want and bag it up, then you take it to a special counter where it is weighed and labeled and ready for check out. This makes for a speedier checkout process as everything is ready to just be swiped through and paid for... but I didn't know this the first time I went and someone had to take my produce back and get it labeled for me. Oops!

Do you know what any of these things are or how to use them?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

"Arabic" Numerals and Arabic Numerals

Yes, numbers are written differently here, which is ironic since we call what we use "Arabic numerals." Here is an example, from right to left of course, of numbers in Arabic compared to Arabic numerals: http://www.languageguide.org/im/num/ar/

I'm in the process of learning these as it comes in very handy in this sort of situation:


Friday, June 1, 2012

Kids Unscripted: Chapter 3

Talia: "The baby thinks I'm his armrest!"
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Talia: "If a baby cow was in an egg, that'd be a big ole egg!" (Learning about mammals.)
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Talia: "Why'd they cut the piano in half?!"
Me: "Thats just a small keyboard."
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Talia: "Mommy, you're too fast! I want you to run like Papi!"
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Talia: "To make a couch, first you need a rocker-bouncer and some cushions and you screw them together with screws."
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Talia: "Mommy, I speak English, Spanish, and Silly-Girl!"
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Talia: "I have a pretend bird. It's called an 'Even' and it says 'Papa-bee! Papa-bee!'"
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Talia: "A big sister is a thing that teaches a baby how to do stuff."
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Talia: "Mami, you put the 't' upside down!"
Me: "That's an 'f'!"
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Talia: (eating a plum) "I can really taste the vitamins in this!"
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Talia: (about the dry cleaner delivery guy) "That guy treated people the way he wanted to be treated; he gave Papi some clothes and Papi gave some back!"
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Talia: "All of the yesterdays are gone... but not today! And not tomorrow!"
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