Saturday, August 22, 2009

Welcome to our new blog site!

I've remained true to Microsoft far too long, and it is now time to be selfish and move on to what I feel is a better blogging application ... so here I am. Sorry Microsoft. Damn Google!
On that note, I'd love to hear if you all followed my blog over successfully and if you prefer this platform over MS Live Spaces. Any other suggestions to what you like to see or hear are most welcome!
We are counting down our final days here in Seattle before returning "home" to Dubai. The kids start school on Sept 6 attending on "Ramadan hours", which is essentially half-days until after Eid since fasting students, teachers, and parents may become delerious with short fuses and hunger if the school days last too long. With that, I should say Ramadan Mubarak! or Happy Ramadan! We are departing Seattle on Aug. 26. Until then, Issam and I will be fasting during daylight hours, which in Bellevue is from 4:45'ish until just past 8:00 PM ... yikes! At least the weather is cooler here. For those of you new to the Ramadan concept, the holy month of Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. We do not eat or drink (that's right, NO water!) during daylight hours for 30 days. It is a purifying time of patience, humility, self-restraint and good deeds. Children, pregnant women, and the terminally ill are exempt from fasting. I made myself sick with nausea yesterday dreading the holy month! I feel guilty about it, but come on ... who is really excited for this? I do, however, look forward to returning to Dubai for the vast majority of the month as I hear it is quite a festive time of year in the evening hours once fasting for the day ends.
We are leaving Seattle on a good note as we finally received some good news in regard to Jennah's health!! We had our 24-hr video monitored EEG and it shows nothing. That's right ... Jennah is truly seizure-free! There were no underlying seizure caught throughout the monitored period ... phew! Our doctor was careful to say, however, that although things haven't gotten worse, things have not exactly gotten better, i.e. her brain waves are still quite depressed in comparison to a typical child. This is OK ... this is Jennah.

We also got another opinion on Jennah's hip dysplasia. This orthopedic surgeon also recommends the hip adductor release operation. So the question is no longer if we will pursue the operation, but when. We will return to Dubai and continue to monitor her hips very closely, i.e. x-rays every couple of months. If her hips continue to progress in this direction as rapidly, then we may return during the holiday season (i.e. Thanksgiving thru New Year) for the procedure. Ideally, we'd like to hold out until next summer's visit.
In other news, my little bro, Mark, received his BSN and Nursing Pin! Congrats Mark!
The ceremony was abruptly halted as they huddled to figure out the pronuciation of "Harnpadoungsataya" (Harn-pah-doong-saht-tie-ya) ... hilarious!
I have also enjoyed playing with the Sammamish Symphony for their Summer Pops concert. We played a free concert at Pine Lake Park and also at the Village Theatre in Issaquah. It was a bittersweet ending as we played our encore piece, realizing that I will likely not be playing again for another year. They do have an orchestra in Dubai, but I have not really considered joining them since it would be so temporary.
It's been hard saying goodbye to all of my friends here, but I am also so thankful for having so many of you to leave! I know I always say it, but I really do love all of you and am so glad to have your friendship and support for everything from playing online games, to coffee dates, to playdates, and just the words of encouragement are more meaningful than you may ever know.
Until next time ... from Dubai ...