Friday, December 19, 2014

Awladuna Akbaduna--again

I'd call today an Awladuna Akbaduna kind of day. The Arabic proverb that most often comes to mind and most often describes my heart:

اولادنا اکبدنا ماشیین علی الارض

Awladuna akbaduna mashyeen 'ala al'ard.
Our children are our hearts walking around outside of us.
(literally: Our children are our livers walking on the earth.)

Dear Husband, Tayta, and I gathered around the computer monitor, two continents away, to watch Active Son walk in the Boise State University commencement ceremony and receive his Bachelors of Science degree from the school of  Heath Sciences. 

That wave was for us. We cheered loudly!


We were able to spot Active Son in the commencement crowd with the Jordanian flag on his mortar board.

Love that smile. Love this guy so much. We're so proud of you, Active Son!

Also today: I was praying for Oldest Daughter as she had a job interview in Chicago, and for Artist Son as he traveled to London to begin a holiday tour of Europe with a college friend. That is a lot of mom-emotions and mom-prayers for one day. I wish I could hug them all!

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

A Charming Singer

The white-spectacled bulbuls which frequent the trees in our yards, serenade me throughout the day. Their beautiful, clear songs often draw me to the window and sometimes out the door, beckoning me to observe the creatures who sings so charmingly.

Today I spotted these bulbuls, resting after an brief afternoon concert and cozied up to each other in our pomegranate tree, which is nearly bare of leaves.

I tried to sneak around to the other side of the tree, guessing that they would spy me and fly away, and so they did, only to alight on a nearby olive tree.

This bulbul's white spectacles and bright yellow breast can be seen in this picture.

It spied a few olives on the tip-top branches, missed when Dear Husband and a friend completed the harvest a couple weeks ago...

...and found one within immediate reach. 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Wedding Day

Last summer much of our family's energy, emotions, and imagination were involved in The Wedding--the wedding of our precious Oldest Daughter and (hmm, I guess he needs a blog-name, at least for now) Music Man.

It was our family's first wedding: the first of our children to marry and the first grandchild on both sides of the family to walk down the aisle. And, the first wedding in Music Man's family. I think all our hearts were expectant and full of anticipation of the joy a marriage would bring to our families.

The wedding was to be held Idaho, though the bride-to-be lived in Chicago, the groom-to-be, in Denver and then Chicago, and the rest of us (sans the college sons) lived in Jordan.  We arrived in Idaho five weeks before the wedding, and Oldest Daughter joined us two plus weeks before. Thanks to the internet, family, and friends, all was ready for the much anticipated wedding day.

The bride with her youngest sister-in-law and her youngest cousin

Tayta was an awesome maid-of-honor, anticipating every need and doing what she could to meet it.

I love this photo and all of God's goodness to me that it represents. It is framed and on my desk so that I can look at it as I pray for these dear ones daily.

We are family

We were beginning to wilt in the 95 degree heat, but we tried to keep smiling.

A posed picture, yes, but I think this was a case of the photographer helping us to get in touch with our true feelings.

My wonderful family. I love them. I can't remember the last time we were photographed together. When I was in high school?? My sister designed Oldest Daughter's bridal bouquet.

My dear father-in-law officiated the wedding

Dear Husband's family--we were so happy to have them all with us! They came from Arizona, Montana, Colorado, and Illinois.

Active son as the marvelous Master of Ceremonies

First Dance

(iPhone picture by Maida)

Oh, and how we danced! The happy dance and many more. Turns out Music Man was the president of a break-dancing club in high school and all his friends were fantastic dancers. We also did some Arab-style dances--mostly just the arm moves. 

This was an impromptu picture taken by our photographer/friend's daughter just after the bride and groom departed. I love the people in this photo--no family, all friends, though friends-like-family-friends. Represented here are high-school locker partners, college roommates, weddings (officiating and participating in), raising children together (though often across the continents), living together, three families who have lived most of their adult lives overseas, bible-study, lots of prayer, lots of joy, and a few tears.

Just this week a thoughtful friend whom I hadn't seen in months asked me to share my favorite memory of Oldest's Daughter's wedding day. I could answer without hesitation: Being surrounded by the love and rejoicing of our dear family and friends as we celebrated together the marriage of our daughter and new son-in-law. Included in that family now is Music Man's family. Our tribes have united in love and a hope for our daughter and her husband's future together. I thought of the Grinch that day--yes the Grinch!--as I felt my heart grow three sizes.

Photographs by Valerie MacMahon of Pictoria

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Flowering Jordan Calendar~October 2014

Wildflower spotting: Black Irises, Wadi Shu'ieb, April

Friday, October 10, 2014

Beautiful Idaho

The beginning of June is a lovely time for a wedding, but Dear Husband and I have discovered it is not the best time for celebrating an anniversary: Early June finds us coming (from Jordan) or going (to the States), just arriving, or, if we are in Jordan, attending a myriad of end-of-the-school-year-events. Not that anniversaries must be celebrated on the day or even the week, but Dear Husband and I tend to loose the plot when it comes such things.

This year, our 29th year of marriage, we traveled to the States a little bit early and so were somewhat settled in beautiful Idaho by the first week of June. There was one, and just one weekend, during which Dear Husband and I could get away for a couple days, and a friend offered their country cabin in McCall--we were off! Two days together at the front end of a full-to-the-brim summer was perfect.

I can't remember when I last visited McCall in early June. Perhaps I never have. The meadows were still green and I saw many Idaho wildflowers which I'd never seen (or noticed) before. Unlike my beloved Jordanian wildflowers, these will have to remain nameless as I do not know their names, and I haven't had time to look them up.

Dear Husband and I spent half a day at Ponderosa Park hiking our favorite Lily Marsh Trail, continuing on to Osprey Point. Enjoy the scenery!

Osprey Point overlooking Payette Lake

Deer-spotting was a joint effort. Dear Husband found the tracks, and I found the deer. After 29 years of marriage, we're getting better at working together. 

 I love that Dear Husband share a deep appreciation for the beauty of God's creation, and that we can enjoy it together.

I was feeling badly that I am so far behind on blogging the very special times our family enjoyed together this summer, but seeing images of beautiful Idaho and remembering those times has brought me refreshment on this gray, dusty Mafraq day. Seriously, we had a dust storm today with winds so strong that it we lost electricity for hours. Yes, perfect timing for some Idaho summer memoirs.