Monday, March 10, 2014

We're here!

Valentines Day, 2014- We traveled xx miles and almost 25 hours to arrive in Thuwal, Saudi Arabia. Our new home for the next 3 years (David's Ph.D was only supposed to be 5 years too, so we'll see).  And we are happy to report that we LIKE it here!

Why are we in Saudi Arabia??  David was offered a great opportunity to work with a renowned researcher in his field. He will be a post doctorate in a plant science laboratory at KAUST-King Abdullah University of Science and Technology.  It is a new University that was built an hour outside of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

I laughed the first time he told me he was offered a position here. I said, uhm, no. We obviously both changed our minds as we researched this opportunity. I could go on and on about why we chose to come here, but in short, it met our needs, hopes and the lifestyle we were looking for. I dreamed of something international, but Saudi Arabia NEVER crossed my mind.  However, we feel very fortunate to have this once in a lifetime experience. We'll see if it's everything we envisioned it would be during these next 3 years :)

Everyone traveled and has adjusted wonderfully! All 3 kids have started school, David has started work, and I have started relaxing ;)  We love it!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Madeline's birthday

Madeline turned 1 on Sept. 11th. I LOVE this little girl! The day before her birthday as I was taking the kids to school, we pulled over on the side of the road to let an ambulance pass by. Without a thought, I started to cry. My mind just happened to return to year ago when she and I were rushed in an ambulance to the nearest hospital and I had an emergency c-section 5 weeks early. I pictured everyone on the streets stopping on the side of the road to let us rush by just like we had done and it made me cry. I know that our Heavenly Father watches out for us and helps us to have the best possible outcome in the worst situations. We are so blessed  to have Madeline in our family.

 I feel like I've been blessed to know a little bit about my children before they are born and Madeline continues to be everything I felt she'd be. A very sweet, beautiful, easy going, loving and happy child. She makes everyone's day better!

Thanks for the cute birthday shirt Aunt Heidi and the cute tutu Aunt Janelle!


Cole started Kindergarten and Stella started Preschool. They attend the same school and have school uniforms to wear, hence the white shirts and blue bottoms. It's been a busy year already driving back and forth continually all day it seems, but the kids are doing great work and love going to school, so I guess that's what matters most.

Thursday, September 2, 2010


Pictures I never got around to posting earlier. Preschool ended for Cole and Stella back in May. They both had great teachers and made good friends. Cole had a party the last day of class where they celebrated by cracking confetti filled eggs they made on each others head, symbolizing good luck. Stella had a graduation ceremony where she received a certificate and a carnation.  I made flower cookie bouquets as Thank You's and people even asked me if  they could pay me to make them for other occasions...sure! There is also a picture of Cole and the infamous Roxann -Cole's first love. Lucky for him, she loves him back. Roxann's son Ricky was in Cole's class and Roxann helped out often.  Apparently he takes after his dad and has a thing for older women hee hee.

Stellas 4th Birthday

On August 1st Stella turned 4 yrs old! She is one beautiful, spunky, entertaining and absolutely priceless little girl, we love her! She wanted an all pink, princess party-of course. We had a couple of friends over for pizza, red velvet cake and homemade pink ice cream all in honor of her. I made her the tutu, but I think I'll remake it and come up with something a little different. HAPPY BIRTHDAY STELLA -now just 3 more birthday and 1 halloween party to go before Christmas.


I finished, well almost, this armoire several weeks ago. I have some touch ups to do, but for the most part it is done. The intent was to put in the living room, but it's so big it wouldn't really work anywhere in there. We moved things around in our bedroom and it fits nicely. The top part has a shelf so it can store more. The best part is I got it on craigslist for 100$! David helped me fill in cracks and sand. Then I painted, painted, distressed and stained. I'd like a little darker stain around the distressed parts, so that's another part I'll finish later too. Overall we were very happy with how it turned out. We found some other great craigslist deals that weekend too. It was just one of those days :)

We have always thought it would be cute to have a bench for the kids under the playroom window. We bought this bench for 15$ on craigslist. It wasn't in great condition but David pulled out the wood putty, made some adjustments, sanded, primed and painted, painted and painted and it turned out cute. I'm going to make a cushion for the top and maybe one day get baskets underneath....
The yellow in the room really isn't that bright either :)

I LOVE this headboard. I couldn't find an inexpensive headboard that I liked for Stellas bed. It's a queen bed and functions as the guest bed too. But thanks to craigslist, that same weekend I came across this bed frame. It was dark turquoise green, but I loved the iron wrought and the curved lines. Luckily I was one of the first who called and the man saved it for me. It was apparently in high demand after that. I think we ended up paying 15 or 20$ for it too! I couldn't decide on what color to paint it. Stella wanted it PINK, not soft pink like I was envisioning but hot PINK. So we compromised. I painted the decorative parts pink and the rest a creme and then eventually distressed the pink parts and toned them down a bit....alot really. But there was a moment or two when I was very tempted to paint it all PINK. It was pretty cute.  It looks pretty in her room and I wish there was a foot board to go with it, oh well.

 We bought another headboard for our room, but I haven't started that project yet. Another 25$ find from Craigslist though. My other great project was this pottery barn chair. I bought this slip cover years ago for 1$ new at DownEast outfitters in Utah because a name was stitched on it. Like my other ones I un-stitched the name and it's not noticeable. I decided it was time to splurge and buy cushions for it since Stella and Cole tend to fight over the other one and this one being pink would be fun for the girls. I went to an upholstery store to buy some foam thinking it would be much cheaper than buying the foam insert from potterybarn kids (70$) To my surprise, foam is made from petroleum and so the price of it has gone up significantly. The manager said it would cost me 70$ to buy the foam for it.aggh. He agreed it was WAY to much to spend esp. since I only paid 1$ for the slipcover. So he led me outback where they have to throw away all their foam for hygiene reasons and showed me brand new large pieces that they couldn't reuse. He gave them to me FREE! I cut them to size and covered them in some old material I had and they fit perfectly in the slipcover. I think I may even have enough foam and misc. stuffing to make another chair with another new 1$ slipcover I have. So we'll have 3, one for each child -spoiled. I wish he'd give me some free stuffing for my beanbag covers :)