Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas 2010

Christmas is all about decking the halls, so with Abbey's help, our halls were completely decked out this year. 
When I admired my friend Monique's feather wreath and asked her where she had gotten it, she told me that she had made it herself and promptly gave it to me.  Isn't it gorgeous?!  It kind of showed up the rest of our quaint decor, but the style in this wreath made the perfect welcome to our Christmas home.  Thanks again, Monique!

So don't you think of bougainvillea when you think of Christmas?  I do, now.
Abbey's graphic style of art work is the best kind of decoration.  She is a master at making simple drawings so classy.

Since we were spending Christmas in Doha this year we knew we would be missing family and friends back home, so I invited a number of people to share our Christmas Eve dinner with us.  Only a few of those Doha friends were able to make it, but we had such a good time with Gurur, Anil, Elif, and Sarah, I was glad it was a small group.

Gurur and Anil are originally from Turkey but they moved to our compound last February and that is when we became friends.  They have been living in Germany for the last 16 years where their precious daughter Elif was born.  They are now Turkish Germans and love all the same great foods I do from Germany.  When Gurur and I first met she was telling me about her work as a pharmacist in Germany.  I told her about my family in Germany and how my dad had been born in a little town in the Westfalen area named Herne.  Her face was so surprised when I said that because she worked in a pharmacy in that same small town.  Now that couldn't be just a coincidence.  We were meant to be friends.  When Gurur told me a few weeks ago that she would have loved to experience an authentic Thanksgiving meal I kicked myself for not even thinking to invite them to our ward dinner.  So I invited her for our Christmas celebration with the disclaimer that our celebration would be about enjoying food, friends, and a religious program.  She was eager to be a part of it and that is how we had our first Muslim family over for Christmas Eve.
Sarah is a friend from California who is in my book club, a member of our ward, and is an English professor here at Qatar University.  When she showed up with cresent rolls, homemade fudge, and chocolate reindeer poop I knew it was going to be a good night. 

We had our tradtional clam chowder, relish tray, homemade rolls, with pumpkin and lemon pie for dessert.  I was sad we couldn't have the traditional German sausages that we usually have in Utah, but everyone enjoyed the food.  Little Elif was too busy getting used to our home to sit down and eat.  She was intrigued by the new dogs in our house, the two cats, the two birds, and the two turtles.  She felt like she had a ticket to the zoo.  Even though she was scared of the dogs, she was very brave and let Brett introduce them to her.

I think this is a reaction to one of Brett's jokes.

Gurur had helped Elif learn "O Tannebaum" and she sang it for us with such cute expressions.  We watched a couple of videos on the Nativity, sang some more songs and then talked until Elif's bedtime.  It was a great evening.
By the time everyone left it was getting late . . . .
The Natives were getting restless . . . .

And the yawns were setting in.

Even Baylee was ready to hit the hay.

So we jumped in our jammies . . .

. . . and went to bed so Santa could come.
Christmas morning brought the cats a nice new rug for the living room (Santa gave it to me, but you can see who claimed it first).

"I just dare you to push me off!"

Brett had been worried that Santa had put him on the naughty list so he took care of his own gift this year . . the kind that gives unconditional lovin.
Abbey got a remote control car as did Brett, so they have been racing around.

The only thing Abbey really wanted to do on Christmas Day was go to the beach, so we loaded up the dogs and went to Al Wakra.

Even though there were quite a few people at the beach that day we took the dogs out on a sand bar and that kept them from running too far and joining a Qatari picnic.  We spent the time playing keep away from the dogs . . .

. . . practicing cartwheels . . .

. . . and just relaxing.

The day after Christmas some friends from church called and invited us to a beach up north:  Fuwairit.
The dogs were in heaven once again and so was Abbey.  It was colder and more windy than the day before, but we had a blast and stayed longer than we expected.

We talked about great books . . .

. . . spent time lounging . .
. . . had more practicing of cartwheels . .
. . . and got to be good Samaritans by digging someone out of the sand.

Even a beached mermaid showed up in the form of Avery!
The Slight Family

The sun was setting as we called it a day.

The real presents that keep us racing around during the post Christmas days are these bikes.  We have been out each day in our Doha desert that we affectionately call "Tatooine". 
Smudge and Freckles think the bikes are just what they wanted for Christmas - more chances to chase outside.
If this self-proclaimed "Mermaid of the Desert" could have a motto it would be, "It's not about the presents we get but the time we spend together!"  Hopefully there won't be too many more Christmases we spend in Doha but boy did we do our best to make this one memorable.
Merry Christmas from Doha!


Mary said...

Looks like a fun Christmas! Those bikes are an awesome workout! Seeing your pics makes me want to get out on my bike! If only I had a beach to ride on!

Amy said...

Oh, Merry Christmas Kearneys! I love the headlocked dogs and Abbey's drawings. I think it's the details she puts in them that make them so splendid (the fringe on the snowman's scarf and the reflection on the ornament)! Speaking of the pups, you never did tell us how they came to be adopted by you, or did I just miss that post?

Jan.lyons said...

Looks like a wonderful holiday. I think my turquoise with pink polka dot bike would look wonderful in the desert. I look forward to meeting Freckles and Smudge.

Marinda said...

I'm always so excited when I see you have a new post. And once again, I wasn't disappointed. What a fun Christmas! What was an incredible zoo you're gathering!

KMurray said...

Wow great fun! I guess having kids at home really do keep you young and out and about. Fun photos!

KMurray said...

Wow great fun! I guess having kids at home really do keep you young and out and about. Fun photos!