No, I’m not pregnant! I had that taken care of after number four.

On Friday, we were sitting outside smoking sheesha, watching some Dexter and someone was knocking on the door. I made Ross get it because I figured it was one of the boys friends looking to see if they could play and well, it was his turn. So he opened the door and I heard, “Oh My God!” I looked in and there was our dear friend Khalil peeking in through front door!








Khalil and his wife Amy abandoned us nearly two years ago to move to Abu Dhabi. They are such dear friends and we really, really miss them. It was an excellent surprise!! He is here for four days for work. Unfortunately Amy and their sweet little three month old Peter couldn’t make it. But it was so great seeing Khalilio! We spent the afternoon hanging out and he got to meet Griffen for the first time.

Later that evening we had dinner at the neighbor’s house, it was fantastic! He’s going to be offshore for a few days but should be back on Tuesday, hopefully early enough to hit the beach with us.

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Early Birds

I took up running about six months ago. I never really enjoyed it before because I hated the heavy lumbering feel when wearing runners. But, this past summer I bought a pair of Vibram FiveFingers. They are so amazing, really. I never knew I could enjoy running as much as I have. These shoes give your foot full movement and flexibility. They support and protect at the same time, it’s as if you are running barefoot. I start running and feel like Hermes, just gliding across the pavement.

For the last week or so, I have been getting up at 5am and driving to the Corniche to run. They mark on the pavement every 100 meters. If you know Doha, I tend to start at the Sheraton Hotel and I jog to the Dhow Harbor, which is just about 5000 meters. By the time I turn around and run back, that totals about 6.2 miles.


The Corniche is great because the view is always different, I don’t find it so mundane as jogging around my compound. Even at 5am, there are others around and it’s good to know I’m not the only crazy one! I’ve seen lots of the same people most mornings so we wave and smile, maybe say good morning as we pass each other.

I took my camera with me this morning and unfortunately I wasn’t early enough to get the beginning of the sunrise. Yesterday it was gorgeous! Today was Friday though, the beginning of the weekend, the holy day, and I was really surprised to see how many people were up and out so early. Most weren’t even there for exercise. There were a lot of men fishing and ladies just strolling along. I think I’m seriously becoming an early bird, which I never really considered before. I’ve had a lot of great, healthy realizations about myself lately. Girl power!!


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You Capture: Vibrance

Well, this week’s photo challenge is “Vibrance”. I skipped last week because I was pretty busy. But this week, I thought that I should participate for ME. If you are interested in photography of any skill level, go visit Beth at I Should Be Doing Laundry! Join in on the fun, seriously, go on!

I recently find myself in need of some lifting up and what better way for a girl to do that than to recognize her worth, her value, and her purely feminine, human nature?

This is what I know:


The deep seeded love for life and the energy within me are what strikingly shine through my features in hues of red, green and flecks of brown.

I am pulsating.

My heart beats and I feel my blood coursing through my veins which travel the length of my vibrant body, over and over again.

I smell of herbs grown in the earth and I long to lay camouflaged in brightly colored autumn leaves.

I am thankfully, so very much alive.

I boldly resonate and linger like a good Australian shiraz.


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Dead Mermaids With Flies “On The Side”

Last August, after recovering from my last two boys having the chicken pox, we went on a trip to Myrtle Beach South Carolina with my parents. We had a blast! There was the beach and shopping and swimming and shopping and good seafood and shopping. One afternoon my mom, sister and I went out to do a little shopping. I’d asked if any of the boys wanted to go with me and Perrin was keen. So we hopped into the Hummer and headed out. I had a dress that I needed to return so that was our first stop.

As I got out of the car, it hit me that I was leaving my sweet, pure, innocent, sunshine personality of mom with my dark humored, broodily creative eight year old. God help us. Perrin, please, please behave yourself I thought as I ran into the store. I looked at Kilraine and said, “We have to make this quick, mom and Perrin are alone together!” She knew what I meant.

We made our exchanges and ran back to the car. Mom was waiting and as we climbed in things were a little awkwardly silent. I said in my best cheerful voice, “all done! Where to next?!” Mom goes, “well, Perrin and I have been having an interesting discussion while you were gone.” SHIT! I was like 5 minutes max?! I just said, “yeah? what about?”

“Well, apparently he wants a tattoo as soon as possible,” she said. I just laughed and said, “He has another 10 years for that because that is as soon as he will be allowed to have a tattoo.” Whew, that’s not so bad I thought. It could definitely have been worse. Then my mom looked into the rearview mirror and said to Perrin, “Perrin, tell you mom what kind of tattoo you want to have.”

Perrin got this huge pot stirring grin on his face and he goes, “Weeell, I said I wanted a picture of a rock” and he paused for a dramatic flare then very seriously, “with a dead mermaid on it.” I just burst out laughing. What tha? A dead mermaid???…THAT’S AWESOME! My mom just looked at me so seriously and said, “Kelly, he is too dark. It’s disturbing.” With that, Perrin started laughing and said excitedly from the back seat, “with flies on the side!” He is such an antagonist!!

I looked at my mom and said, “look, he’s winding you up and it’s working! You’re letting an eight year old boy wind you up! Just laugh at him, tell him it’s cool and move on.” So we did and everyone is still talking about the dead mermaid tattoo with flies on the side. My sister Christy and her husband both have tattoos and so she had asked me to have Perrin draw out his idea. This is what he came up with:

I think he likes the idea of Christy having his tattoo but at the same time, I think he’s a little hacked that he’s not 18 yet!

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It’s A Long And Rugged Road

I’ve had a lot of thoughts and emotions toiling within me lately. The boys and I are headed home soon and it is a very welcome break. Doha can become so stagnant and lifeless after awhile. There are just some things that are unshakable within our lives and for me, those are the Appalachian mountains. Nothing, absolutely nothing in the world feels more like home to me than seeing that mountain range, walking through it’s forrest and breathing the crisp clean air filled with the scent of pine and dirt. It gives me so much joy to watch my kids trying to creep up on a deer or spending hours skipping rocks in the river.

I find myself yearning for greener pastures, to leave Doha behind and to feel like I can sink my roots into fertile soil. I long to say “we’re home” and it mean the location that we truly call home and actually make it so.  I am growing weary of being the “Global Nomads.”

If only life were that easy. We would be trading one set of trouble for another and I guess in the long run it all comes down to priorities and I suppose reality as well. We have to make ends meet, and we have four kids to put through college. This job is what makes that happen. Some days, I just want to say “screw it” and be done here, I know Ross often thinks the same. I guess it’s a good thing he keeps me somewhat grounded to this world. Otherwise I’d probably float away on dreams and ideas and whimsical fancies.

Heaven When We’re Home: By the Wailin’ Jenny’s

I have really enjoyed this group, the Wailin’ Jenny’s. I’ve posted about a few of their songs before. I’ll type the lyrics below, but it has become my theme song over the last few months. You can listen to the song by clicking on the link above. I guess the things for me is that I may feel restless and unsettled and uncertain of life at times, but it is comforting to remind myself that all of these things are what makes me who I am. At some point, we’ll “find what we’re looking for. Then we’ll drop these bags and search no more, because it’s gonna to feel like heaven when we’re home”.

“Heaven When We’re Home”

Don’t know what time it is, I’ve been up for way too long
and I’m too tired to sleep.
I call my mother on the phone, she wasn’t home,
and now I’m wondering the street.
I’ve been a fool, I’ve been cruel to myself.
I’ve been hanging onto nothing
when nothing could be worse than hanging on
And something tells me there must be
something better than all this.

I’ve fallen many times in love and every time
it’s been with the wrong man.
Still I’m out there living one day at a time
and doing the best I can.
Cuz we’ve all made mistakes
that seem to lead us astray.
But every time they helped to get us where we are today
And that’s as a good a place as any
and it’s probably where we’re best off anyway.

It’s a long and rugged road
and we don’t now where it’s headed,
But we know it’s going to get us where we’re going.
And when we find what we’re looking for
we’ll drop these bags and search no more
‘Cuz it’s gonna to feel like heaven when we’re home
It’s going to feel like heaven when we’re home.

There’s no such thing as perfect,
and if there is we’ll fnd it when we’re good and dead.
Trust me I’ve been looking,
but tonight I think I’ll go and take a bath instead.
And then maybe I’ll walk a while
and feel the earth beneath me.
They say if you stop looking
it doesn’t matter if you find it
And whose to say that even if I did
it’s what I’m really looking for.

It’s a long and rugged road
and we don’t now where it’s headed,
But we know it’s going to get us where we’re going.
And when we find what we’re looking for
we’ll drop these bags and search no more
‘Cuz it’s gonna to feel like heaven when we’re home
It’s going to feel like heaven when we’re home.

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