Monday, April 29, 2013


I always feel quite scandalous on Tuesdays!  It's the one day every week that I don't have to take Nicholas to school or drive the boys to after school activities.  Nicholas calls it his "lazy day" and wears his pajamas all day (unless we go to the pool).  I call it my "scandalous day" and wear ... shorts and tank tops!  We can get away with it on our compound, but if I leave the compound, I must cover my shoulders and down below my knees.  After nearly a year here, I do feel rather exposed in shorts and tank tops.  Funny how you acclimate.

I'll post again soon with more pictures and stories from the last week or so - we've been especially busy!  But it's time to wake the boys and get Jaden off to the bus...

Monday, April 15, 2013


We had a wonderully relaxing spring break in the Maldives.  What a beautiful nation of tiny little islands off the coast of India.  Most of our time was spent hanging out at the pool or on the beach.  We also went fishing, kayaking, and snorkeling during the day and enjoyed movies and chasing crabs on the beach at night.
Airport in Maldives - our flight was only 4 1/2 hrs.  Then we had a 40 minute boat ride to our resort.

Our room had a back porch with a couch and a hammock with the beach just through the trees.

The boys loved our outdoor shower.

Anyone know what kind of a tree this is??

Cove just behind our room.
Jaden and Ken went snorkeling here and saw several small black fin sharks.
Wish we had an underwater camera
Building sand castles ...
holding hands

collecting seashells along the beach.

Pool with the beach beyond...

karate moves in the pool
silly Nicholas

Poolside cafe

Ken enjoyed the fresh coconut

Hanging out in the pool

Pool at sunset

Nicholas didn't like the sand on his feet and was often carried around the island. 
Good thing he is a lightweight!!  Such a spoiled little boy!!!  Who still carries their 4 1/2 year old?!

We snorkeled everyday and Jaden did AWESOME!!  Nicholas did awesome snorkeling in the pool, but he wouldn't even try in the ocean.  He doesn't like sand or salt water.  Guess a beach vacation wasn't his favorite. 
First snorkeling trip ... Nicholas was mad when he heard all the cool fish he missed seeing!

Maldivian music and dancing one night at dinner

Palm frond trimmed and shaped into a heart.

Jaden loved finding small hermit crabs and letting them crawl up his arm

Nicholas preferred watching the crabs, not handling them

Big hermit crabs came out at night.  It was fun chasing after them with our flashlight.

This is as dressed up as we got on the trip ... no swimsuits and everyone wore shoes.  :-)

Resort at sunset

We found a ping pong table in the kid area on our last morning at the resort. 
Who knew they would like it so much?! 

Monday, April 1, 2013

Getting ready for spring break

Spring break is next week and we're hoping to do a bit of snorkeling with the boys in the Maldives (islands off the western coast of India).  The boys are both pretty good little swimmers, but we still bought some life vests that fit nice so they can float at ease in the water.  We also found children's snorkels.  Of course they couldn't wait to try them out!  So off to the pool tonight to practice.  Jaden was natural right from the start ... he will do great!  Nicholas seems to struggle keeping his mouth closed on the mouth piece.  It fits fine, but he can't seem to remember to keep his mouth shut.  (I always knew he was more like me than Ken!!)

Jaden is ready to snorkel!  Practicing in the pool...

Nicholas pracicing his snorkeling skills in the pool
so cute!

Super proud parents

Jaden's teacher was telling me last week that Jaden is doing really well in his math extension class.  He started off in the group before Christmas ... they work on more challenging math concepts with a special math teacher.  We weren't sure he was ready for the group at first, but he has really risen up and is doing exceedingly well!  It was nice to hear such encouraging news from his teacher!!
And the other exciting news from the weekend is that Nicholas is finally riding his bike without training wheels!!  I think he's been ready for a while, but we've had a hard time getting him to try.  Here's a little video clip from his first attempt without training wheels ... yep, successful on his very first attempt!  Way to go Nicholas!!! 

Easter Weekend

We had a wonderful Easter weekend... 
Boys all dressed up for church Friday morning
 After church service on Friday, we went to our friends house for an Indian Holi party.  It's a Hindu celebration of spring and includes a lot of water and color.  We had a great time - the boys played with water guns and there were powdered colors in bright yellow, pink, green, etc.  People were covered in colors and then the guys started throwing each other into the pool.  Poor Ken was thrown in - lost his glasses, soaked his wallet, and ruined his phone.  Glasses were found, wallet dried out, and phone seems to be working again, so all turned out fine.  We had a great time with our new friends!
After being thrown into the pool ... still smiling!
 Saturday morning started with an Easter egg hunt for the kids in the compound.  It was a great turnout, but it was HOT!!!  May have been the warmest morning of the year.  The kids were sweating and all the chocolate candies were a melted mess.  We still managed to have a great time and then put the chocolates in the freezer when we got back home.  :-)

Boys showing off new Spider Man watches from the Easter bunny

Collecting eggs in the compound

Spoon races following the egg hunt

Jaden and Gabi were neck and neck in the spoon race!

Collecting more eggs inside our house (too hot to bother outside)