Saturday, March 5, 2011

Party Time!

Marcella's official birthday is on March 8 but we celebrated with her school friends this past weekend.  This is the first time we have had a "friend party" and I was quite pleased with how smoothly it all went.  We reserved a room at our Island Oasis Rec Center, ordered pizzas, brought drink boxes and bottled water, had clementines and plums, and ordered two beautiful cakes from our friendly Tamimi grocery store.

The party's theme was "Fancy Nancy" and went from 10-1.  We spent the first hour doing crafts: making fancy bracelets, fancy critters, and fancy clips.  Then everyone played outside on the playground adjacent to the room, came in and ate, played some party games, and had cake.  About half of her class showed up including two very sweet boys, as well as Ms. Mary, her teacher.  We had specified there by no gifts but her teacher gave her the neatest gift cerftificate- a fancy manicure.  Ms. Mary said her daughter had received one as a gift and could not resist giving one to Marcella since the party was a Fancy Nancy party.  We will have so much fun at our local salon. 

I had planned for us to play about five different party games but we only played three: pop the balloons, red rover, and a game we called the Dress Up Relay.  The kids' favorite game was actually one we came up with before we popped the balloons.  Casey just made it up right then; it was basically making a balloon volcano and they wanted to do this over and over.  It was a very sweet bunch of children and everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Return of the King

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia declared a holiday this past Saturday.  This was in honor of his safe return from a three month absence.  He was actually in the US for medical reasons.  We really enjoyed our unexpected three-day weekend.  I did not find out until Marcella came home from school on Wednesday and told me.  I was a little skeptical, but Casey confirmed the good news when he came home. 

On Thursday we enjoyed a KAUST sponsored event called "Family Fun Day."  The day started off with bike races in the morning.  There were races for all ages and bike and helmet decorating contests.  We decided just to be observers this year but I can tell the girls are excited about entering next year.  The adult bike race was a site to watch.  Four of the men competing were professional-like with appropriate gear and bikes.  I have never seen a bike race up close and I was very impressed with their speed. 

In the afternoon we played at the Fun Day's "water park" set up.  KAUST had kiddie pools out with hoses for toddlers and for the school agers there were jumping castles and water.  The girls had a blast with all their friends.  It was so fun watching them run around.  The pictures show the girls with their faces painted (done during Fun Day).

KAUST also sponsored a Classic Car Show this past weekend.  This event was situated along the Harbor area and we all enjoyed viewing the cars.  There were even some good oldies playing to help us get in the mood.  We were all most impressed with the cool shelby cobra and corvettes.

Finally you'll see little Eleanor holding her first duplo cake!

Free Wheelin'

We are sooooo proud of our girls!  BOTH of them have just recently taken their training wheels off!!!  About two weeks ago Marcella finally decided to have them off.  She really had not been using them at all but needed them on for a confidence boost.  She was so proud of herself for actually making the decision to have them off.  Next week she turns 7 so this was a big six-year-old milestone for her to overcome.

Well Theresa was not to be outdone and as soon as Marcella's were off she wanted hers off as well.  She was having some issues with putting her foot down for stopping so we worked on that and just this past weekend she was off on her own!  Theresa is only 4 1/2 and I think this is the earliest that any of us have been able to bike (by us I mean Tantes and cousins).  She is so cute because she likes to wear the gloves, knee pads, and elbow pads.  I think these will be off soon though because her confidence is up- she was doing some standing on the peddles biking yesterday evening.

From the last picture you'll see that Eben showing off on his motorcycle (it's actually Eleanor's but he prefers her purple to his red).