Monday, 28 September 2015

Baby A

During our long summer holiday away, our next door neighbours unfortunately moved out. Only down the road to Dubai, but still; no more chats in our back garden across the wall, or quick little plays with the puppies - or baby A!
The other day they were up in Abu Dhabi and came over to say a quick hello. So lovely to see them, baby A had obviously changed a lot since we had last seen them, and now he could walk! Although he was mostly interested in playing with Lucas' Nerf guns... Only a year old, but things that go "Bang!" - what's not to like?

Friday, 25 September 2015

Nathan's day

Nathan was actually off for his birthday this year, yay!
He had a nice day with the family. He got woken up as per tradition with singing and gifts (special 'Big Bang Theory'-LEGO that the kids had picked out while in the LEGO store this summer, very cool!):

We had a huge sushi lunch, with chocolate milkshakes and everything. Gotta celebrate when it's somebody's birthday!

We did a quick trip to Yas Mall to purchase the big birthday gift...

Later on in the afternoon there was a small Nerf war with Lucas and his mates; and we had friends over for Pavlova:

Finished the day with an All Black World Cup game (they are looking more worried than they had to be!) - NZ-Namibia 58-14.
Happy days!

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Our gorgeous boy

Lucas really enjoyed the CrossFit Kids training he did last term, so he decided to continue this year as well. He likes the varied training sessions and he has found some good friends there who he has a lot of fun with; and he really likes his coach, Ms Annie, who was his Grade 5 teacher at school.
So this term we try to get him there for all three sessions they offer each week. The CrossFit gym is too far away from everything, so there is no time to do something else while he's there, so I usually just sit and wait.

Yesterday I decided that instead of just sitting there twiddling my thumbs, I would partake in the CrossFit MetCon session purposely scheduled at same time. We did a "Mile Run" ladder for time: Run 1 mile - Rest 3 mins - Run 800 m - Rest 2 mins - Run 400 m - Rest 1 min - Run 200 m.
While I've never been a fast runner, I'm also not very fit at the moment and running outside in 38 degrees was... hot. The sessions are only 45 minutes, so when I came back in after my 400m, I got told I wouldn't have time to finish the workout, as I was the last one. Ah well, no biggie, not the first time that's happened! :)

In the car on the way home, I asked Lucas how his workout had been, and after telling me all about it, he asked what we had been doing. The following conversation happened:
- So what did you do Mummy?
- We did a "Mile Run" ladder.
- ONLY running? No burpees or anything??
- Hang on, we ran quite a lot outside (I showed him the distance, and explained the workout), it was hot, and hard! Although I didn't get to finish the last bit.
- Why not?
- I was the slowest, so the coach had to cap my workout.
- Why?
- Because everybody else had finished when I had one more bit to go. I was too slow.
- Hm... (Thinking) That's not nice.
- Well, I have to get fitter, and be faster for next time!
- (Thinking some more) Was it only girls running?
- No, it was a mixed class, there was one man and four women.
- Ah! So Mummy, don't worry, if there had been more people I'm sure there would've been someone else slower than you!
- (Smiling) I don't know buddy, maybe, maybe not. It doesn't matter. I'm not a fast runner and I'm not so fit. That's why I need to come back and train more, so I get faster!
- I would've been sad if I didn't get to finish my workout Mummy... You know, I could've waited for you! You could've just finished after class!
- Yes maybe I should've..! Good thinking!

Do I need to say that my heart was swelling up from his very caring comments, and driving home I got tears in my eyes from listening to my son trying to boost my confidence. Our gorgeous boy.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Keeping busy

So we are three weeks into the new term and kids are back into routines again. Apart from school and homework, they have something on every day, apart from Friday's.

Lucas is doing CrossFit after school on Mondays and Wednesdays, and Saturday mornings; Linnea is doing gymnastics on Tuesdays and both kids train rugby every Sunday and Thursday evening. 
Keeping busy, and fit!

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Dragon Boating with ADAS

This morning I went to the beach to try out a sport that I hadn't tried before - dragon boat racing!

It is the ADAS (Abu Dhabi Airline Spouses) group that have set up a team, and the plan is to get together and train twice a week, and maybe enter a fun race or two further along in the year.
This morning there was quite a few of us, as it was a free trial to start the season. I'm not sure how many ladies will return to actually commit to the team; but it was a good workout, and lovely to be out on the water; so I will definitely consider participating on a more regular basis.

Dragon boat racing originated in China over 2000 years ago. Traditionally, these boats are carved out of teak wood. For competition events, the boats are generally decorated with ornately carved Chinese dragon heads and tails, but during training these decorations are usually removed.

The crew of each boat is typically made up by 20 paddlers, a drummer or caller up the front, and a person who steers at the back of the boat. The paddlers all face the front, where the drummer or the caller sits and guides the rhythm of the rowing.

Dragon boat racing is very similar to other human-powered water races, such as canoeing, but has one main distinguishing factor: rather than an oar, we used a paddle - which was not attached to the boat in any way. This meant it was important for the all us rowers to move in a synchronized manner and the movements had to be shorter and sharper. It's a fantastic workout, it really gets you working your whole upper body - AND it sure gets you working on your team spirit..!
(Thank you Jennifer Cruickshank Lévesque/ADAS for some of the photos!)

In the right direction

School timings have changed for our school this year and the kids are starting their school day slightly earlier than last year. It's only changed by 15 minutes, so it hasn't affected us much in the mornings. We were already leaving that little bit earlier because Lucas now being in Secondary, have to be in his Advisory room straight after the first bell.
Our school is growing so with these new timings, they are able to stagger the lunch breaks for the students, so it wont be too crowded in the canteen and the playgrounds.

We leave for school around 7.20 in the mornings, and this morning when we came outside to get in the car, Linnea said:
- Oh Mummy, it's a bit cool outside today!

Well, while it was still 32 degrees so "cool" might not quite be the fair description, it was for sure cooler than last week, when it was already 37-38 degrees that early in the morning! But she was right, the wind was actually not hairdryer-warm this morning, so I guess the temperatures are going in the right direction, and rather fast too! Yay!
Won't be long now, and we will have some lovely 15 degrees in the mornings again!

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Tee & Putt

The temperatures now in early September are soaring around the mid-40s, so to get the kids out of the house, you still only go from inside - to another inside... At least today, we decided to try something new - a newly opened indoor mini golf, with the added twist of it being glow-in-the-dark!

Each lane wasn't very big, although a few of them proved to be a little bit challenging. Linnea was the only one who managed a hole-in-one, on one of the first holes. The whole mini golf is decorated in an Arabian Palace theme, quite cool with all the neon colours!

This 18-hole mini golf is part of a franchise, already with two outlets in Dubai; but this is the first indoor glow golf in Abu Dhabi. If you would like to try, it's called Tee & Putt, and it's situated in Dalma Mall, just next to Toys R'Us on Level 2.

Friday, 4 September 2015

Overlapping holidays

When we left Edinburgh airport a week ago, we also left Nathan behind. It was a bit like in the American movies - we got to kiss goodbye at the gate!
Nathan had another flight at the same time, but he was going to Copenhagen, via London, to keep holidaying. His three week vacation unfortunately only coincided with ours for his first and our last week; so as we headed back to start school, he went on to Scandinavia to catch up with some friends.

He had a night out in Copenhagen with Søren and Thomas, dangerous stuff!

Then he took the train up to see Sam and family in Nyköping. Weather was enviably perfect, just look at this sunny day, when they were out with the boat, Sweden at it's best. Gorgeous!

Making the most of the lovely sun and the perfect temperatures, before it's back to 45 degrees again...

Swedish meatballs for lunch!

One day they went to Stockholm, and had lunch at the Bianci Café in Stockholm. Right down Nathan's alley with Bianci bikes all over the walls and ceiling. Very cool.

He's now back in Denmark for another couple of days, before it's time to come home and get back to work, and to us.
After two summers holidaying apart, I really, really hope that he will manage to get some better suited time off next year; so that we can travel, see friends and enjoy some time off together during the summer holiday. Fingers crossed.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Aunty Nikki messed up...

We didn't have much luck with remembering our things on this trip.
Aunty Nikki forwarded us this funny email conversation she had with Linnea, while we were sitting on the train from Aberdeen to Edinburgh. (Start from the bottom)


From: Nikki White
Date: 27 August 2015
To: Boel Watson, Nathan Watson

Oops, guess Aunty Nikki messed up.

Sent from Nikki's iPhone


Begin forwarded message:

From: Linnea Watson
Date: 27 August 2015
To: Nikki White
Subject: Re: Hi

I no that is why I asked you to tell her pls and if you do don't tell her that I told you.

Sent from my iPad


On 27/08/2015, Nikki White wrote:

Oh no you are gonna be in trouble!!

Sent from Nikki's iPhone

On 27 Aug 2015, at 14:45, Linnea Watson wrote:

Hi Aunty Nikki I forgot my glasses at your house can you tell my mum that I forgot them in your kitchen.


Ha ha, poor Linnea, she got busted! She had to learn the hard way that us grown-ups stick together and we will find out!
Although, no biggie. We had ordered a few things that didn't arrive before we left, so as Nikki will forward them on to us, she will add the reading glasses into that parcel as well.
Good thing we saw the 'Inside Out' movie while in the UK, so we could use that to talk about the "honesty planet" with Linnea, for future reference! Hmmm, little minx.