Un-Welcome Home

This was not the first post I was expecting to write after returning from my summer hiatus. After a great trip back home and an even more fun stop over we were all a bit home sick and so happy when we finally landed in JFK. Our 8pm flight stood on the tarmac for another hour because of some rain which caused the departing flights to be delayed and hence an airplane traffic jam! what annoys me is that with all the technological advancements why do we still have to put up with these slight weather delays.. it was light rain not a thunderstorm!!

We disembarked the plan around 9:30pm making our way to a hallway that led to stairs that would eventually lead us to immigration. Because of all the delays there was a significant crowd.. everyone tired.. and then we heard the vibration.. it took a second to place and then we saw it.. everyone was turning and running.. running towards us! I had H sleeping in my arms.. I ran.. I didn't know what to do.. I went to the nearest wall and clung to it.. H still in my arms, my eyes searching for M and D. I spotted D standing dazed in the middle of the hall.. the stampede of people coming his way.. I screamed his name.. I screamed.. I couldn't leave H.. where was M.. and in a flash the screaming people passed by and I closed my eyes holding H closer.. and then it was over.

The first thing I did was search the ground afraid to find my baby boy on the floor somewhere.. But he wasn't . thank god.. thank god.. and then I heard M call my name and he had D.. D was fine.. crying.. a small bump on his head. 

But it wasn't over yet.. only minutes later we were faced with another stampede. Everyone was confused.. no one knew what was going on.. a terror attack? Families were separated,  a mother searching for her child.. a woman with a bleeding leg.. we were ushered into a room.. down a flight of steps.. up another.. people started to push.. people were losing their calm.. 

After what seems like an hour we were told the coast was clear, we could head back downstairs for immigration.. finally. 

Lines began to form and it was as if order had been restored.. We were probably 30 minutes into the process, still in the immigration line when the police rushed in screaming 'everybody down, everybody get down' and that's what we did.. Stayed in that position for.. I don;t even know how long. SWAT walked through us.. they were looking for something.. or someone.. we heard talks about a shooter.. we heard talks of Terminal 8 being shut down as well.. we were in Terminal 1.

After some time we were allowed to get up again but still no word on being able to get out. It was sometime before midnight that the immigration officers returned and it was 1:10am by the time we left the airport.. another hour before we finally got home.. Home.. 

The next morning when we checked the news to see what exactly had happened.. turns out false reports had been called in claiming shots had been fired outside both Terminals 1 and 8 due to which we were put under lock down while the police searched for a shooter. But no one was found, no shell casing, no evidence to support the reports..

Okay then..  

Sorry to start off with such a downer but I felt I had to share.

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Summer Travels

I am going to be taking a leave of absence for most of the remainder of the summer. The boys and I are flying back home for a few weeks later this week. So most of my days are being spent packing.. I am looking forward to attending a very close friends wedding and the boys with get a chance to bond with family.. especially cousin's who are waiting anxiously. While most of my family have met D.. this will be his third trip.. though the first in his mind, he doesn't remember the other two. No one but my parents and brother have met H. 

What I am not looking forward to his the airport and flying 16 hours solo with the two boys.. D shouldn't be much of a problem.. I am packing many activities for the flight.. but H is a bit of a wild card.. send me happy thoughts!!

M will join us towards the end to join in on the wedding festivities.. and then on our way back we have picked a new European country to explore :)

I hope to share some of our trip on Instagram so follow along.

Have a wonderful summer vacation.. I'll see you all when we get back.

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20 Questions with D

1. What is your favorite color? Purple
2. What is your favorite toy? Race Face Robot Game
3. What is your favorite fruit? Oranges
4. What is your favorite food? Pizza
5. What is your favorite ice cream flavor? Vanilla with Rainbow Sprinkles on a Cone
7a. What is your favorite tv show? Backyardagins
7b. Favorite Movie Lightening McQueen
8. What is your favorite animal? n/a
9. What is your favorite song? Fight Song - Rachel Platten
10. What is your favorite book? I Love My Hat by Douglas Florian
11. Who is your best friend? Hussein C
12. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Playing on the slide
13. What do you want to be when you grow up? Astronaut
14. What is your favorite thing to do with mummy? Playing board games
15. What is your favorite thing to do with baba? Playing foosbal
16. What is your favorite thing to do with H? Bath Time
17. What makes you feel sad? When grandparents leave
18. What makes you feel happy? When it's my birthday
19. What was your favorite thing about being 5? Being in Kindergarten
20. What do you look forward to most about being 6? Practicing basketball      

I changed a few of the questions.. 
Here are 20 Questions with D when he turned 5 and 20 Question with D when he turned 4

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We are currently toward the tail end of the holy month of Ramadan.. as of today we have one week of fasting left. For those of you not aware of what Ramadan is, well it is a month where we fast from dawn to dusk.. so at present approximately beginning around 4 am and ending around 8:30 pm. During the fast no food of any kind is permitted. And while I know the hours seem long it's not really all that hard.. it takes a day or two to get used to it and then you can hardly tell.. I personally miss food just because food is awesome but there is not a lot of I'm too hungry to function type of scenarios.

We are also celebrating a birthday this month.. D turned the 6 on Thursday :) Since we were all fasting.. minus the kids of course.. we will be taking a rain check on the family celebrations.. but the big boy started his day off with some whip cream covered MnM pancakes. And D continued the celebrations with an ice cream party at school.

Friday was D's last day of school.. in a few months we he starts public school and I'm not sure if I'm ready for that just yet :( When I asked him if he was sad he asked 'sad about what?'

 Saturday was graduation.. 

Each child was supposed to create a centerpiece for graduation about themselves from infancy to now.. 

But before the year ended D's kindergarten class put on a little art show.. below are some of the class's work and the ones that D did.

Van Gogh

Jackson Pollak

Piet Mondrian



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Friday Photography

Into the Light - Taken while driving through the Chesapeake Bay Tunnel connecting Virginia to Maryland. To read more about our trip read here

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Love this print but don't think your wall is ready just yet.. how about this print on other things?! Check these beauties out.
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New Jersey's Grounds for Scultpure

With D's Kindergarten year coming to an end their class decided to visit the Ground of Sculpture in Hamilton, New Jersey. I had been meaning to check it out for sometime now so I was excited when I found out it was going to be a family trip. We left H at home with the grandparents.. and though we arrived late D had an exam at his Saturday Islamic school that he couldn't skip :( We stayed even after everyone left and I'm already thinking we need to plan another visit sometime in fall. If you have never been to a sculpture park you must add it to you list of things to do..

Now get ready for a ton of pictures!

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