Saturday, January 31, 2009
So on to itunes. I purchased the few episodes available that I had not yet seen and then added a couple of shows for Grace including Dora and Babar. Well, I don't know if it is itunes or the lovely connection we have to the internet, but it took about 6 hours to download Dora - why I tortured myself twice (once to download and then again to watch the darn thing), I just don't know.
Now I'm sitting on the HARD tile floor in the computer room because all the chairs are taken (we should have internet in the apartment within a week - supposedly - I'm not holding my breath) and trying to get itunes to download the next Grey's. It keeps quitting for some reason. My cheeks are numb and ankles sore, but I refuse to give in and let the computer win. I will watch my crappy show and enjoy it! OK, it still has 2 hours to download, no 88 minutes, no 2 hours and my tush is starting to go beyond numb and into hurting. I can't really stay down here for two hours. Not if I'm going to get any sleep at all.
On another (and much more important) note, I may not have to go to work here after all. I probably will do some substitute teaching and I may consider working in a year or two, but I would really prefer to stay home until the little man is at least one, preferably three and in school. J went into HR and they said we should be able to get Mom's visa done if we get certain documents translated into Arabic and show that I have a permanent visa. We'll see. Rules here are more written in sand than stone. It all depends on to whom you are talking and who you are with at the moment. Apparently being a women alone can be an advantage in places that have lines. Hmmm... It is a balance between needing J to be there since he's the one employed and being better taken care of if we don't have him around - WEIRD.
Oh! itunes says only 12 more minutes. Maybe I'll make it if it doesn't crash again! I hope I didn't jinx it by putting it down in writing.
Monday, January 26, 2009
On another note, last night J and I were speaking to another pilot when he mentioned he was enrolling his son at the Canadian International School and that they were accepting new students and looking for teachers. We visited today. We might be able to get Grace in this year, but we definitely can get her a spot for next fall. They don't have any need for a full time teacher this year, but can use me as a sub and then get me on full time in the fall. I would just have to get the right paperwork with the right stamps to the right people. Ugh! I don't know how anyone gets anything done around here! I left my teaching portfolio in my basement in CO in an unmarked box in storage room that is packed to the rafters. I have NO idea which box has my diploma in it either.
So another paperwork nightmare begins...
Sunday, January 25, 2009
So barring the spit up, things were going pretty smoothly. I took a cool picture of the sunrise over the mosque which I've uploaded it to Facebook. I got LB (my daughter) dressed and out the door on time for school. J (husband) and Mom dropped LB at school and went on to try to get Mom her visa.
While they were gone I thought I'd have a leisurely breakfast. I got the oatmeal made, tea brewing and bread toasting. Then Little Man started to fuss, of course. So I put him in the high chair and made him some cereal, while my breakfast cooled, thinking I could eat and feed him at the same time. Ha! He was crying and fussing by the time I had it made so I left my breakfast to chill while I attempted to feed him. Nope, not happening. He just fussed and cried some more. So I took him out of the highchair, while my oatmeal congealed, tea turned bitter (I left in the tea bag) and toast grew stale and fed him "from the tap". The good news is that he only spit up a little bit and fell asleep.
He slept in the pack-n-play, which is so much more convenient than my arms. I was able to dress and groom myself in peace! I even got some cleaning and laundry done.
The bad news came when Mom and J got home. Regardless of the "no problem" attitude and J's employer, there will be no more sponsoring of in-laws. Mom can't be hired as a nanny because she's American. Huh? My guess is Americans are too expensive. So Mom will stay on a visitor's visa, making a trip out of the country every thirty days while we appeal (not likely to change anything) or Mom or I get a job. I don't think it would be difficult for me to find a job (J was asked if I was interested in a job when he signed LB up for school), but I would have preferred to stay home with the baby. We're going to see if there is anything available for mom first. Double Rat Farts!
Saturday, January 24, 2009
I've been spending the last few days doing laundry and trying to find places to put things. I hope DH doesn't mind me rearranging his piles to put things away or at least hide them. I've decided that the apartment is far too bare and empty to have piles of junk. In our old house, it blended in and didn't look quite so bad, but when you've got an expanse of shiny tile floor that pile of crap really stands out.
Hubby's friends received their shipment from their last house so they have stuff flowing out the front door into the common hallway. They've decide they didn't need two little white computer desks and we've promised to put them to good use. At last a receptacle for the paper pile. The file cabinet I bought should help too... as soon as I get some hanging file folders.
In a few days we'll receive a delivery from IKEA with a couch, arm chair, footstool and 3 bookcases. We took home a coffee table and a child size table and chairs. I'm not entirely happy with the couch color. I really wanted a particular couch because I found it to be the most comfortable, but there wasn't a huge selection of colors. So I found myself making what I think of as a very American choice. Denim blue and the chair is blue and white strip. Oh well, I can also have a cover made for it later.
Maybe the same guy that made our friend's curtains can make covers for the white dining room chairs that aren't white anymore. It didn't take long, did it? I think I'll have him make roman blinds for our living room windows and curtains for the bedrooms. So much saving money!
I'm going out to a different grocery store this afternoon. I'll write tomorrow about that little adventure.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Of course IKEA arrived exactly when they said they would. So I have my mattress pad and a couple of bookcases. I think I need about 20 more of those bookcases. Where do you put things when there are no coat closets, linen closets, basement or garage??? I have NO idea where I'm going to put anything when my 20 boxes arrive from the states.
After lunch we finally got going to the medical center around 3. It was NOT easy to find. Especially since it wasn't in the building we were told. There is a whole block of hospitals and medical centers and the immigration health tests are held in the Disease Prevention and Screening building (not exactly the same as the preventative medicine department at Khalifa Medical Center). Let's not even get into the dead ends, one way streets and parking lots with random double parked vehicles.
Once we were in the right place it all went smoothly and efficiently. The women's screenings are on a separate floor from the men so J couldn't go past the first waiting room. First, I got a number by presenting a copy of my entry visa and passport. Then I waited in line in a different room to pay 250Dhm. Once I had paid and had my picture taken, I went through another door and waited for the next available phlebotomist to draw blood. After that was done, it was through another door to wait for the next x-ray technician. She told me to take off my sweater and bra, but leave on my t-shirt....OK... After the chest x-ray (I'm pretty sure I don't have TB), I went through yet another door and ended up in the same waiting room where you pay and then out to the main waiting room where all the men are hanging around waiting (ironic). I have to go back today after 4 to get the results so I can take them to J's company's HR department for my permanent visa application.
After all that, I made a quick (ha ha ha) trip to Carrefour. J waited in the car so I got to go aisle by aisle as slowly as I wanted without anyone sighing or whining. It was really quite pleasant even if it was busy there. Of course I spent way too much time and way too much money, but there you go. I came home to a hot dinner (THANK YOU MOM!!!) and kids in jammies.
Monday, January 19, 2009
I'm starting to reevaluate my shopping priorities. Maybe curtains should be higher on the list. Right now the top of the list is a couch.
Today J got home about 2AM from his trip. He's sleeping in, but I can't afford to let him have a day off. We need to get to the medical clinic to get my blood test done for my residency. I need to be able to drive! I'm going stir crazy feeling trapped. I guess I could have taken a cab somewhere yesterday but I didn't really NEED to go anywhere.
We also need to go to the grocery store. We're running out of things we can eat without a stove. Maybe they'll really hook it up today. Maybe...
Sunday, January 18, 2009
At 8AM I called the gas man and... he answered! Woo Hoo! Even better he said he'd come today at 1PM. Wouldn't that be nice. I'm not exactly holding my breath.
Grace is staying home again from school today. I don't think her teacher would want to deal with her, umm... toilet issues...
Saturday, January 17, 2009
I used this morning to clean a bit. It seems like every time I turn around there is a layer of very fine dust on everything. So I vacuumed and mopped and scrubbed anywhere the baby had been eating. I haven't figured out what to use on the very shiny tile floors. The all purpose cleaner left streaks. So one more thing to adjust to, how to clean...
This afternoon the gas man should come to hook up my stove, or cooker as they are called here. IKEA should also deliver my mother's bed and mattress. At least the air mattress she's been sleeping on is high quality.
Back from another crazy day of shopping. Went to IKEA and got
stuff and ordered stuff. I got my bucket arm chair to sit in. We got
laundry hampers, shower curtains, room curtains and enough stuff to
fill a cart. We're having 3 shelving units delivered along with a
mattress pad to cushion my side of the bruiser of a firm mattress that
my dear hubby (DH) picked.
OMG! It's the 15th. We had the stove, washer and dryer delivered and
installed today. Simple right? Wrong! The stove is gorgeous, too
bad I still can't use it. That's right, we have a gas line, but we
need someone to hook it up. The good news is that we're finally doing
a load of laundry. The bad news is that tomorrow starts the weekend
so it will be Sunday the 18th before someone can hook up the stove. I
think the last time I cooked a meal was about the 5th or 6th. I just
want to have a home cooked meal, nothing fancy, just spaghetti or
DH is out trying to find a hardware store that will sell him anchors
for the concrete walls so he can hang the curtains. I'm really looking forward to knowing where things can be purchased and even more driving myself there. I can't drive our car until I have a UAE drivers license. I can't get a drivers license until I get my permanent residency. I can't get my permanent residency until I get my blood test. I can't get my blood test until I drive down to the clinic, but I don't have a drivers license! I guess I'll will wait until my DH is available to drive me, not that I can shop by myself until I get a bank card in my name...
but I do look forward to the days when they both sleep through the
night and stay asleep until a reasonable hour.
My daughter wants to go swimming again so here we are at 7:00 AM and
she's already in her bathing suit. I told her we need to wait for
either her dad or nana to get up to watch her brother. It think I've
stalled her for at least an hour or so. In the meantime, we've got
catch up homework. Yep, my 3 year old has homework. Her teacher
wants her to do the worksheets that the other kids have done in
class earlier this year like tracing letters, circling words with the same beginning
I've been trying to get this place tidied up which is difficult when there really isn't anyplace to put anything. I did notice something
last night. All the piles seemed to have only one person's things, my
Yesterday was Friday and the first day of the weekend. We went down to the Corniche where they have a family playground with another pilot and his family. One of the climbing structures is shaped like a pirate ship. The kids had a blast playing. Then we walked down the waterfront to a cafe for lunch. It is really beautiful here. One thing that was a little different was that the cafe was on the men's beach which is separated from the ladies and family beach by a solid wooden fence. Apparently single men can not be trusted around women in bathing suits.
After lunch we went to IKEA again. We were going to take the kids in with us, but after a morning of romping on the playground both fell asleep in the car. Nana stayed in the car while hubby and I ran in and got a couple of things. I've been actually cold in the middle of the night.
When I arrived in Abu Dhabi my husband had purchased mattresses, fitted sheets, pillows and pillow cases and a couple of very light weight bed spreads. They are not in fact any thicker than a sheet. He did buy our daughter a complete comforter and duvet cover, and my mother got her own at the first IKEA trip. I
was waiting until I choose a bed to decide what duvet cover I wanted, but
I gave in and bought something yesterday. I got black and white so
hopefully it will go with any bed we choose.
I also got extra pillows, light bulbs for mom's IKEA lamp, more drawer
bins... I don't know what I'd do without IKEA! I've started a very long wish list. The top of the list has sofas and more storage units, but a bed would be nice too.