Losing Your Mind

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It is Wednesday afternoon here in Doha and for my lucky muppets there is no school tomorrow. The heat has taken over this week and so we have sought refuge at our pool as we do so many unbearably hot afternoons. 

The three muppets were in the pool before I had even walked out the door and they were quick to call positions for a game they were going to play. As I sat in the sun sipping my club soda I listened to the banter back and forth and in between the three.  Suddenly things got heated, the middle muppet was not happy with a call the oldest had made. He was demanding a second chance and the oldest was reluctant. I watched as he screamed at the oldest and pleaded with the youngest to take his side. He stomped his feet and told the oldest how selfish he was and then decided to jump on top of him in the pool. As he ran to make his leap he slipped and tripped and did a partial flip in to the water. The oldest muppet burst out laughing. He couldn’t contain himself and the youngest joined in and soon the middle guy was laughing too. They forgot about what they were fighting about and started to reenact the whole scene laughing at the middle muppets folly.
I didn’t even have to step and break up their fight they solved it on their own with humour and they learned a few valuable lessons. If you are going to loose your mind make sure you have your balance first and most importantly you need to be able to laugh at yourself sometimes!

 

The Necklace

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A few weeks ago the oldest muppet told me about a project that he was working on in school as a part of their community service project. The students in his class and the other grade 2 classes were designing necklaces to sell to raise money for the Red Crescent (which is similar to the Red Cross in Canada) He spoke excitedly about the designs he had created and said that the grade 2 students would get a chance to buy the necklaces first and he really wanted to buy the two that he had made.

At the start of this week he told me that on Tuesday they would be selling the necklaces and not to forget to give him money. When Tuesday morning arrived I scrambled through my purse for small bills but could only come up with a 100 riyal bill (about the equivalent of 30$ Canadian) for the oldest muppet. I asked him just to bring me back the change at the end of the day and he agreed to do so.

When I pick up the three muppets from school that day the oldest was bursting to show me his purchases, as soon as we walked in the door he went through his bag to find the necklaces. He came up to me and hugged me and handed me a necklace that was a simple square tile with a rainbow painted on it attached to a string. “This is for you Mummy” he said with a smile on his face “I know that you like all the colours in the rainbow and I thought you might think that this was pretty and that it would make you smile.” I hugged him and thanked him for the thoughtful gift he held up the second necklace and told me it was for his father, he had painted a yin yang symbol on it and was eager to give it to him. When my husband woke up to get ready for his evening shift the oldest muppet excitedly presented his dad with his creation. The other two muppets were quite upset that they didn’t get a necklace and I suggested that maybe we would make something together on the weekend.

The next day at pick up we waited for the oldest to come out from his after school activity. The two younger guys ran happily around the playground with their friends and didn’t even notice the oldest coming out the front of the school. He came up and gave me a hug and said that he had something to tell me. He told me that he had found the change from the necklaces in his back pack this morning and was going to give it back to me but then he thought about how upset the youngest and middle guy were about not getting necklaces. So he decided to use the money to buy them each one. He pulled the two little necklaces from his pocket. “I’m sorry Mum” he said “I know I told you I would bring the change home, but I didn’t waste the money, it all went to charity which is a good thing” I had to agree with him and told him that I was proud that he had thought of his brothers feelings. He pulled out a third necklace and said smiling “I bought this one for myself, you know since it is for a good cause” I laughed and suggested we get going. In the truck the oldest handed out the necklaces to the youngest and middle muppet, they were so happy that their big brother had bought them something so cool and thanked him with a big hug. It was amazing to me that something so simple made them so incredibly happy because it was from him.

As we made our way in to the school this morning the oldest saw the middle guy wearing his necklace he was proudly showing his friends what his big bro had given him. I gave the oldest a high five to say goodbye and he said to me “You know Mum that feeling of helping others and making people happy it is the best feeling isn’t it?” I totally agreed with him and I was a proud mama at that moment. I am so glad that the middle and younger muppet have such an amazing big brother to look up to!

The Bunny

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The Easter Bunny visited our house on Sunday morning and the muppets were super excited. They ran through the house searching for eggs and were happy to see that the bunny had not forgot to get them a few extra treats as well. They each had a basket full of new water toys and all three and they were eager to use them.

When they returned to school on Monday morning the youngest muppet told anyone that would listen about his egg hunt and the fact that the bunny had also brought him toys! The Easter bunny was his new hero and had replaced Darth Vader and Santa Claus for the time being.

We had to stop at one of the local shops to get water this afternoon. As we walked in to the mishmash which is most of the corner stores here the youngest muppet decided to explore the isles. They were jammed with everything from flour to potato chips and in no particular order. I was about to pay for our purchase when the youngest came running towards me “Mummy!” He yelled excitedly “look the Easter bunny!” In his hand he held a box of Playboy body spray. I started to laugh and looked at the shop owner who just raised his eyebrows. I didn’t know if understood what we were saying but all I could think was that one day that will be the only bunny the youngest muppet will want visiting!

Hope everyone had a happy Easter!

Sing Me a Song

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The youngest muppet told me a few weeks ago that I would get to visit his music class one day and listen to him sing. I asked him if it was a concert and if they were practicing something special, I got nothing back from him. Not because he was keeping it a secret, he genuinely had no idea what they were going to be doing. As the day approached I asked him if he was excited about his Musical Celebration the following day. He looked at me blankly and said “That is tomorrow?” and when I asked if he would be singing or playing instruments and he just shrugged and walked away. Needless to say when I arrived at the music class this morning I didn’t have high hopes of a spectacular performance.

The music teacher explained to the parents that it was not a performance but a glimpse in to what the children have been learning and what they do in each class. The kids came marching in to the classroom singing a song and formed a circle, the youngest muppet spotted me and waved excitedly as he made his way to his spot in the circle. He sang some songs with gusto and others he was a little unsure, but he looked like he was having fun dancing and singing with his friends. When I picked him up from school I told him how much I enjoyed his music class that morning. He was quiet for a minute and then he replied “It was fun mum, and next year I will get to be on the big stage like Rhysie and Ryder, and it will be my turn to put on a show!”

Our littlest muppet is ready for the big leagues next year, always trying to keep up with his big brothers!

A Side of Ranch

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The middle muppet is the king if ketchup, his father and I joke that he just uses his food as a vehicle in which to get the ketchup from the plate in to his mouth. We laugh it off like it is no big deal, but we are both pretty sure that he consumes more than any human should! This past summer while we were at a friends place visiting we decided to order pizza from the local pizza shop in town. As the muppets sat down to eat my girlfriend asked the muppets if they wanted any dip for their pizza. The oldest muppet turned up his nose for a minute but then realized that his friends were all having it and decided to give it a try. The youngest muppet will do anything the oldest does so he was sold and the middle guy… well I think he heard the word “dip” and made his decision before my friend finished her sentence. The three muppets enjoyed their pizza and ranch dip and the middle muppet declared that it was the best thing in the world!

The rest of the summer the middle muppet insisted on side a ranch with most of his meals, he would dip just about anything in it and sometimes it was pretty gross but he was eating so I was happy. The middle guy was sorely disappointed when we returned home to Doha and our pizza arrived ranchless. Since my husband had been the only one home for a few weeks there wasn’t a full house of groceries so we didn’t even have any in the fridge to help his growing addiction.

Now sometimes living here it can get frustrating trying to find the foods that you enjoy at home. One day there will be Cheerios in every shop filling the shelves and a few months down the road nothing and it may not come back for another few months. So when I went looking for ranch dip on our first shop after holidays I wasn’t completely surprised when I couldn’t find it. I didn’t make it my top priority to find it I figured it wouldn’t kill him not to have it. Every so often I would look at the grocery stores that we normally shopped at and finally one day it was there on the shelves.

The middle muppet was with me and grabbed four bottles, “You never know mum, they might not have it again next week!” I laughed and agreed that four bottles should be enough. So for the past few weeks the muppets have enjoyed a side of ranch with everything, and I mean everything… the middle guy even dipped a cheese sandwich in it tonight!  I will let him enjoy it while he can, cause you never know when the next ranch shortage will be. 😉