When it’s hot, enjoy cold stuff!

Here in the UAE, summer is warm…okay hot. The temps hover around 37-42oC. There is also very high humidity, making it seem even hotter AND the air, when it blows, is also hot. Those are my experienced facts.

There is NO need complaining, whining, moaning and groaning…..it is what it is.

Here’s my spin: Drink cold water ~ Drink iced tea ~ eat watermelon and cold apples ~ stay hydrated. Enjoy and be thankful that the beautiful sun is shining on your day.

Make a plan to meet friends inside a building to talk, work, strategize….or go to the beach with a floatie and a water bottle and enjoy the summer air!

Life is too short ~ make everyday great, FuN and joyful!

Aloha,

Denise

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School Starts ~ Ring that bell!

We had a wonderful “Back to School” orientation day at our school yesterday and today is the big day!  We met the new superintendent, new principals and new families. We handed out schedules, directories, maps of the campus and maps of Abu Dhabi; restaurant guides, souvenir post cards, book marks and posters. Everyone is ready to start!

Now, to re-set my alarm and get my exercise regime back on track….

Cheers to a new school year! I’m sure you’re all dancing with glee~ what I learned: summer is a great break from routine but the kids are happiest when they are together and in activities and so am I.

Aloha,

Denise

Dr. Doolittle would be so happy!

A 30-minute taxi ride to the Emirates Park Zoo left a lasting impression! Tara and I spent the morning visiting the farm, forest, sea, jungle, desert and street animals! Yes, they were ALL there: cows, goats, birds, lions, elephants, leopards, giraffes, camels, sharks, fish, eels, raccoons, armadillos, skunks, snakes and lizards. Whew, that’s a packed zoo.

The zoo is lovely, air-conditioned and newly remodeled ~ very clean, with friendly staffers and even has a delicious restaurant and ice cream!

I learned that the animals from all over tolerate the heat, play well together and enjoy being smiled at and photographed.

If you’re wondering what to do for a morning, I highly recommend this outing. Dr. Doolittle would be so happy here: he’d have a lot of conversations!

Aloha,

Denise

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Summer is ending….

From June 20 till August 24th we’ve enjoyed summer: friends, foods, sunsets, fireworks, boats, planes, autos, sand, surf, singing and little moments in between.

My daughters begin school next week; one in college, one in high school. That means check-in calls, brown bag lunches, PTA meetings and Mom’s Nights Out!

I’ve accomplished a lot this summer: more than usual. I’ve given and received great hugs; shed tears of frustration, joy and blessings; experienced magic and dreams coming true; and realized exactly my place in the world.

Cheers for summer! I know the sunsets will be sweeter and the days will be richer as we begin the new season. Have you recounted your summer fun?

Aloha,

Denise

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Something I learned

When you surround yourself with wonderful, smart and generous people, your life becomes richer and more FUN. I’ve been doing this since third grade and my life gets better each year.

Lately, my originating circle includes friends from the UK, Australia, the US  and the UAE. I’ve been touched, moved and inspired by them all.

It starts with a smile and a “hello” and grows from there. Do you agree?

Aloha,

Denise

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Amazing Graces

I went on my first “Girls Road Trip” since moving to Abu Dhabi and it was BRILLIANT! My friends Beth and Sherry drove and Jayne, Joanne and I were happy passengers traveling from Abu Dhabi to Al Ain*, home of Sheikh Zayed, father of the UAE.

*from wiki:

Al Ain (Arabicالعين‎, al-ʿayn, literally The Spring), also known as the Garden City due to its greenery, is the second largest city in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and the fourth largest city in the United Arab Emirates. With a population of 568,221 (2010), it is located approximately 160 km east of the capital Abu Dhabi and about 120 km south of Dubai.[1] Al Ain is the birthplace of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the first president of the United Arab Emirates, and it has the country’s highest number of Emirati nationals.

Al Ain is located in Abu Dhabi, inland on the border with Oman. The freeways connecting Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai form a geographic triangle in the center of the country, each city being roughly 130 kilometers from the other two.

The drive was comfortable, filled with lively conversations and about 2 hours.

We arrived to tour the Sheikh’s home, an oasis/ date palm farm /irrigation miracle, the Al Ain museum and the view of the city from atop the highest point Jabal Marfeet.

The fun continued during the evening as we ate dinner, got to know each other and played a fun card game. These are extraordinary women from UK, Australia and the US; the English language added to the fun. We ate crisps, wore sunnies, and laughed about nappies. Quite an education!

Our second day was all about the Wadi Adventure water park. (www.wadiadventure.ae) We all experienced some NDBs (never done before), including a ride down white water rapids; surfing in a 90-second increment, man-made lagoon; zoomed down a zip-line high over the river; executed a ropes course ten stories over the ground and a log swing. For six sunny hours we enjoyed the time together. We even witnessed a sand storm that blew through the park!

True friends grace our lives and it is only when you explore the friendships do you realize how important girl-time is. I am most grateful for ALL my girl friends ~ from every place I’ve lived ~ and I treasure the times I spend with them.

Thank you Beth, Sherry, Susie, Joanne and Jayne for the fun and friendship! Sky diving is our next adventure!

Aloha,

Denise