Thursday, February 22, 2018

Growing Up

Oh, this girl is growing up, and it is beautiful to see. After years (and years) of little sleep, she is now "sleeping in" and groaning about waking up--just like a proper pre-teen. Hence, the morning photo here.

As this is the time of life where kids deal with identity and are figuring out who they want to be, Dale and I both in awe of Sojo and how she embraces her uniqueness and believes that she will not change who she is just because it is the cool thing to do. There are times when I see her fierce loyalty to herself and tell her that many people struggle for years to get to the point she is at now.

But, wow, I still can't believe that she sleeps.

Friday, February 16, 2018


Living overseas her entire life, Sojo is a native English speaker, but there is a twist in some of her English phrases. Somehow, she has missed out on some of the more random English phrases and idioms, and she gets them mixed up often. This cracks all of us up something fierce. We've taken to writing them down so none of us forget.

But, then it also makes us wonder why a phrase that is so close (but yet so far) makes it sound so ridiculous. Here are some of our favorites from the past few years:

"I have a dog in my throat."

"I'm as fit as a horse."

"It's my way or the skyway!"

"We got off on the wrong toe."

And, our favorite one happened one night when we were talking as a family about how we appreciate that we don't need a lot of material things to be happy. Sojo agreed, "I know. We are such simpletons."

We still crack up about that one.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Soaking Up the Desert

As per Sojo's request, we are trying to get out in the desert a few more times before we leave this area of the world. This time, we decided to ask some friends who have never been in the desert (this tends to be a teacher or full-on North American thing to go exploring) to join us to share the beauty and adventure.

And, adventure it certainly was.

Starting with the camels blocking the road to the dunes. As we have to really go fast to get over the loose sand, we could not take the chance of gunning it with potential camels in the way. It left us no choice but to get out and check out the camels. Dale was mingling among them for a while, and they are very curious creatures.

This one was massive! And way too close to me--made me nervous. But, that smile and the sun rays were awesome. 

After we finally arrived (one person stuck at the start, which slowed us down), the dune jumping fun began. Sojo absolutely loved showing her friends how to do it, and I took a million photos of the teenagers to put on Instagram, which was really cute. 

One of our friends decided to leave early, but he wound up getting really, really stuck. Now, getting stuck is all part of the desert adventure, but this was not adventurous. He had three small, squirrely kids in the back. All the guys went to help him try to get out while the ladies stayed with the kids. At this point, the kids were begging to stay for the sunset, which was not at all our plan. 

Needless to say, we were there for the sunset. Again, so many photos of the kids in the sunset, and then we started to walk to the stuck cars before it became dark. The thing about the desert is when it becomes dark, it is like a light switch being turned off, and I certainly didn't want us all separated. 

Even though the guys spent the majority of their day digging out cars, it was a blast for the kids of all ages. And, the families who had never been before had a wonderful time.

Now to squeeze in a few more desert trips before the true heat arrives.